Bitter and Beloved: What Our Editors Are Reading | Sojourners

Bitter and Beloved: What Our Editors Are Reading

Since Monday of this week, the escalating violence in Israel and Palestine has killed 126 Palestinians and seven Israelis. As Mae Elise Cannon and Joyce Ajlouny write, “While the immediate violence must be brought to an end, the realities of the ongoing Israeli occupation of Palestine cannot be ignored,” especially not by U.S. Christians. Neither should Christians ignore the bitter irony of how the municipality of Jerusalem has further plans to evict more than 1,500 Palestinians in order to build ... a biblical theme park.

Also this week in irony: It turns out that policies California imposed to curb climate change are actually adding more carbon to the atmosphere. Some churches that had just figured out how to safely reopen with COVID-19 precautions are now grappling with new CDC guidelines. We critique pastors with flashy sneakers, yet ignore the morality of our own spending habits. We work hard for diplomas and degrees, and yet as Jes Kast reminds college graduates, no title is more important — or utterly unearned — than being beloved.  

1. U.S. Christians Can’t Ignore Israel’s Ongoing Occupation of Palestine
While the immediate violence must be brought to an end, that can only happen when the root causes of injustice are addressed. By Mae Elise Cannon and Joyce Ajlouny via

2. ‘Not Everything That You Want Is Righteous for You to Buy’
Talking with the creator of @PreachersNSneakers on rich pastors, capitalism, and why we should all examine our spending habits. By Mitchell Atencio via

3. The Climate Solution Actually Adding Millions of Tons of CO2 Into the Atmosphere
New research shows that California’s climate policy created up to 39 million carbon credits that aren’t achieving real carbon savings. But companies can buy these forest offsets to justify polluting more anyway. By Lisa Song and James Temple via ProPublica and MIT Technology Review.

4. An Open Letter to Graduates, From a Pastor in Your College Town
No title or degree is greater than “beloved.” By Jes Kast via

5. The Emerging Movement for Police and Prison Abolition
Mariame Kaba, a New York City-based activist and organizer, is at the center of an effort to “build up another world.” By Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor via The New Yorker.

6. When Conspiracy Theories Come to Church
How to deprogram followers of Trumpism and other extremist cults. By Gina Ciliberto via Sojourners.

7. Congrats to the 1,000 Feral Cats Who Just Got a Job Policing Chicago’s Ratty Streets
Chicago has a rat problem, and not in the 1920s-style “gangsters during Prohibition time trying to figure out which one of their crew is working with the feds” kind of way. By AJ Dellinger via

8. Blessed Are the Blue-Collar Workers, For They Can Save Creation
The American Jobs Plan is an equitable infrastructure plan that prioritizes clean energy and environmental justice. By Susan Hendershot via

9. The Jean War Between Millennials and Gen Z Cannot Be Won
Every generation flies a denim battle flag. But surrender may be the only way out. By Maura Judkis and Abha Bhattarai via The Washington Post.

10. Do the New CDC Guidelines Mean a Return to In-person Worship?
The CDC’s updated guidelines encourage the fully vaccinated to mostly return to normalcy, leaving church leaders torn between celebration and caution. By Gina Ciliberto via

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