Joe Kay 3-28-2018

By Adam Jones, Ph.D. (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Some chose to push back against injustice. Others tried to protect the status quo. Many thought they could just be spectators, watching without getting involved. That’s not possible, then or now.

May this insight be useful to you all. And may you feel minimally conflicted when you share it on Facebook.

Ron Stief 3-28-2018

FILE PHOTO: Gina Haspel, a veteran CIA clandestine officer. CIA/Handout via Reuters
 

Haspel played a central role in a past torture program of the agency. In the early days of the Bush administration, she famously ran a black-site secret prison in Thailand where detainees were tortured with waterboarding and other inhumane abuse. As the torture program began to come under fire by members of Congress and even some members of the Bush administration, Haspel was involved in destroying evidence of about 100 videotapes of the torture, ensuring that there would be no accountability or record of the torture.

Ed Spivey Jr. 3-28-2018

Image via Shutterstock/Succo Design

But back to the wall idea, which President Trump said could easily be built by the Army Corps of Engineers, because they’re, you know, in the army right? He assured skeptical Pentagon officials that the $20 billion would be more like a loan, because, duh, Mexico would pay it back. In fact, U.S. negotiators are already working with their Mexican counterparts to establish the precise terms of repayment. Asked if he prefers reimbursing the American treasury with a lump sum or in monthly payments, Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto replied, pleasantly, “How about nada? Does nada work for you?”

Juliet Vedral 3-28-2018

I firmly believe that every aspect of life is designed in some way to draw us deeper into spiritual intimacy and give us a better idea — however limited it may be — of what God is like. As a single woman, I felt invited to experience God’s longing for relationship with humanity. When I was unemployed, I felt drawn into God’s deeper story that transcended the one I wanted to tell about my life.

Joe Kay 3-26-2018

Shooting survivors from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., lead the cheers along with 11-year-old Naomi Wadler of Alexandria, Virginia (2nd R) at March for Our Lives in Washington, D.C. March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein

Movements take time. They have an ebb and flow — two steps forward, one step back. People lose interest or get distracted. Others get tired of struggling. Some say we’ve made a little progress, so let’s stop here.

Marc A Zimmerman 3-26-2018

Image via Rebecca Cook/Reuters

One likely reason that crime drops after joint neighborhood improvement projects is community engagement. Residents in the University Corridor intervention area reported participating more in neighborhood watches, block associations, and community events than in the area where residents didn’t undertake improvement projects.

Image by Robert Rognlien / CreationSwap.com

Isn’t that the question that the thousands gathered in Jerusalem for Passover, and the small circle of disciples and friends, were asking on that first Palm Sunday, and in the fateful week that followed? Who is this Jesus? And is it the Jesus we want to follow? The one we thought we were following? Or the one we now end up denying and rejecting? Which Jesus?

Juliet Vedral 3-23-2018

Image via Paul, Apostle of Christ trailer 

Caviezel went on to say, “There is one choice, it's Christ. And that doesn't mean it's gonna be easy ... Certainly wasn't easy for Jesus, certainly wasn't easy for Luke or Paul. So what does our faith do? In these tough times, not good times, the world in good times can handle it great. In bad times, what happens to us? That's when we become beautiful. That's when the world goes, how can you love?”

Cathleen Falsani 3-23-2018

Image via Isle of Dogs trailer

There is a moral (some might even say spiritual) clarity shared by the young humans in Isle of Dogs Anderson hasn’t been celebrated in his previous films, and that feels particularly salient right now as we watch children, led by the student-activists from Parkland, champion a national movement to demand sweeping legal and political changes to combat the rampant gun violence that plagues our nation.

the Web Editors 3-23-2018

1. What Is the Church’s Responsibility in a Constitutional Crisis?
Historically, the church has stepped in to offer a word on what the tenets of Christian faith look like in troubled times.

2. What Would a World Designed By Women Look Like?
For thousands of years the profession of architecture has been male-dominated — and a close look at our structures makes that clear. But now more than 40 percent of architecture school graduates are women. What does that mean for the future of design?

Sharrelle Barber 3-22-2018

People take part in a rally against the murder of Brazilian councilwoman Marielle Franco, in Sao Paulo, Brazil March 15. REUTERS/Leonardo Benassatto
 

To be clear, Marielle Franco was assassinated for speaking out against police brutality and the plight of blacks and the poor in the favelas of Rio and because she had a seat at the table of power. Marielle was a city councilor who, just 18 months prior, had received the fifth highest vote count out of 51 city councilors voted into local office in Rio. She was a part of the mere 5 percent of black and indigenous women who occupied seats of power in local government though they account for over a quarter of Brazil’s total population. Her ascension to political power surprised many as a young, black LGBTQ woman who had grown up in one of the largest favelas in Rio. However unlikely, Marielle was committed to using her platform to elevate and amplify the voices of her community and her constituents. 

Jim Wallis 3-22-2018

Our concerns about the future of our nation’s values, heart, and soul, and even for democracy itself compel us to respond more theologically than politically, where what we believe is the foundation of the things we must vocally reject. We believe that the future of the nation’s soul, and the integrity of faith, are both at stake.

Image via Gandalf's Gallery/Flickr

Acknowledging that loneliness is a profoundly human and sometimes uncurable experience rather than a mere pathology might allow people — especially lonely people — to find commonality.

Natalie Patton 3-19-2018

Tragically, the separation of spirit from matter has tainted the way we see all of humanity. In the past, it was used to justify violence against the Native Americans, and in the more recent past we’ve dismissed thousands of casualties from wars in the Middle East. We have leaders today who consider war in Korea palatable because “if thousands die, they’re going to die over there.” This is a direct result of a theology that cares more about souls than it does bodies. It’s much harder to love our neighbor if we don’t see the divine, the Christ, within them. It makes it much easier to characterize entire swaths of people groups who don’t have “Jesus in their hearts” as being the enemy. It continues to pervade modern day missions that typify non-Christian cultures around the world as savages living in darkness, rather than looking for the light that is already present and using that as the starting point.

Abby Olcese 3-19-2018

Image via "Love, Simon"/Facebook

Robinson’s performance as Simon is worth noting in the way it adheres to and subverts teen movie characters we’ve seen before, with particular regard to the master of the genre, John Hughes. Robinson’s got all the charm, looks, and outward swagger of a Hughes leading man, with the inner confusion and insecurity of Molly Ringwald, all rolled into one. He’s the rare effortlessly cool movie teen who doesn’t have it all figured out. And his friends are honest about their own issues, too, providing a refreshing portrait of movie teenagers that hits closer to reality.

the Web Editors 3-16-2018

1. “Hey Twitter, I'm On a Mission...”
Writer and artist Candace Jean asked Twitter to help her identify a mystery attendee at the 1971 International Conference on Biology of Whales — the only woman and only person left unnamed in a group photo, and someone the men present vaguely recalled as “an assistant.” The result: an electrifying public crowdsourcing project, and the learned histories of 3 incredible women.

2. The Koch Brothers vs. God

The fossil fuel lobby preached its gospel in Virginia. Now, black churches are fighting back.

Jim Wallis 3-15-2018

As Trump and Kim Jong-un approach possible conversations, here are 3 truths for American Christians to keep in mind.

Whitney Parnell 3-15-2018

As a black woman, my confidence is not just perceived as arrogance, but as intimidating and angry. 

Jennifer Butler 3-14-2018

Students release white doves outside Crescenta Valley High School in La Crescenta, Calif., as part of a National School Walkout to honor the victims of the shooting at Florida's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Image via Reuters/Kyle Grillot

Scripture calls us to do the things that lead to peace. Why then do we choose the path of violence?

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