September-October 2013

Cover Story

Francis—refreshingly candid and seemingly repelled by the perks of the papacy—offers new hope for the Catholic Church and beyond.
In John Carr's view, Pope Francis is already shaking up the Catholic Church—and the best is yet to come.


New data shows that Protestant churches, including evangelicals, are increasingly involved in social action ministries.
Gaza, a land at once ugly and impoverished—and beautiful and rich.
'Not to share one's goods with the poor is to rob them.'
Pope Francis is clearly on a mission to alter the status quo, but will that extend to greater freedom for women's leadership in the church?
How taking it to the streets is changing theological education.
Regardless of where we end up on immigration reform, Matthew 22 reminds us that no law can make us love our neighbor.


Korean sex slaves—so-called "comfort women"—stand up for respect and justice.
Dreams of a better life—and political corruption—spark rising protests around the world.
A grassroots resistance movement emerges in North Carolina.


You can't hide this kind of debacle forever—people are finding out.
GOP attempts to circumvent the health-care law range from the inane to downright bullying.
More than 80 bills to restrict voter access were introduced in 2013.
If you have something to hide, hide it better.
We should always be open to what God is speaking to a new generation of Christians.

Culture Watch

"We're all bastards," Will Campbell wrote, 'but God loves us anyway."
The March by PBS / Secular Days, Sacred Moments edited by David Cooper / One True Vine by Mavis Staples / The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict by Dale Hanson Bourke
Comic book creator Gene Luen Yang on his latest work, Boxers & Saints.
When we experience movies like memories, we meditate rather than consume, and do what Pascal suggested was the antidote to all the problems in the world: sitting still for 10 minutes and thinking.
Has the uptick in Christians eager to adopt overseas done more harm than good?
Resisting Structural Evil: Love as Ecological-Economic Vocation. Fortress Press.
Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner & Saint by Nadia Bolz-Weber


I appreciated Danny Duncan Collum’s article “Love, Race, and History” (June 2013) about U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey.
Khaipi, a peace studies professor in Thailand and a Chin religious freedom activist
Reflections on the Revised Common Lectionary, Cycle C
As a Christian who leads four lectionary study groups, I attempt to bring Rabbi Seth Goren’s wisdom on “Recognizing ‘Christian Privilege’” (July 2013) to my students by using Jewish websi
Rose Marie Berger’s “The Pope We’ve Been Waiting For?” (June 2013) is spot on!
Gregg Brekke’s important article “A Holy Land Without Christians?” (July 2013) draws attention to an issue that should concern us all—the decreasing Christian population throughout the Middle East.
Reflections on the Revised Common Lectionary, Cycle C
A poem in response to “Peering in the Dark Corners,” by Catherine Woodiwiss (July 2013), on U.S.
Excerpt from Stand Our Ground: Poems for Trayvon Martin and Marissa Alexander

Web Extra

When most people think of Gaza, surfing is not the first thing that comes to mind. But photo journalist Ryan Rodrick Beiler has an eye for capturing the resilience and richness of life in this occupied land.
In the September-October 2013 issue of Sojourners magazine, senior associate editor Julie Polter interviewed award-winning comic book author and artist Gene Luen Yang about his new