Benjamin Perry 12-09-2019

Too often, we discuss immigration as if migrants were objects, not subjects in their own journey. Individual stories disappear into the rhetoric of “tens of thousands,” retreating into statistics’ deadening numb. Lost, too, is the depth of migrants’ faith; the courage to sojourn as a stranger in unknown lands, fueled by longing for a loving future.

The evening before an Arizona jury decided the fate of Scott Warren, who was charged with a felony for harboring and assisting "illegal aliens," people of faith from around the country gathered in Tucson to show their support. After two hours of deliberation, the jury found Warren not guilty.

Simran Jeet Singh 12-09-2019

Charlotte Clymer is an activist, writer, and Twitter savant. She’s a veteran who served with the U.S. Army from 2005 to 2012, and she serves currently as the press secretary for the Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ civil rights organization. Charlotte is one of the most prominent trans activists in the country, and I wanted to learn more about how her personal experiences with poverty, the U.S. military, and being transgender have shaped the person she has become today. I’ve learned so much through our friendship over the years, and I’ve learned even more in this conversation about the challenges she’s encountered, and how and why she remains active in seeking justice and civil rights for all.

Rachel Sherman 12-09-2019

Call it an American melting pot – or pozole, a traditional Mexican soup, or cioppino, an Italian-American fisherman’s stew – Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in the Belmont neighborhood of the Bronx welcomes worshippers from more than a dozen nations.

the Web Editors 12-06-2019

Climate music, baby Yoda, women in church leadership, and more on this week's Wrap. 

Brian Kaylor 12-05-2019

Mysterious people with political connections arrived from a country off in the East. They brought news the ruler did not like. There was a new claim to the throne. An effort was underway to remove him and install another ruler. King Herod wanted to dismiss the claims as “fake news” and a “hoax” — not because the intelligence report was inaccurate, but simply because he didn’t like the news. These Magi, after all, had done their research.

Saadia Faruqi 12-05-2019

There’s a difference between having a strong faith and being religiously obsessed, and religion can definitely be an addiction — in my view it becomes an addiction when it interferes with the rest of a person’s life, when following it means hurting oneself, or hurting other people. For me, I re-invented myself entirely in the wake of my conversion.

Jim Wallis 12-05-2019

Advent began on Sunday and will continue until Christmas. In Advent, we are to turn our thoughts to the meaning of Christ’s coming and the deep significance of the season for followers of Jesus. I would go so far as to say that Advent and then Christmas are my favorite liturgical seasons because they demand that we do the work to prepare our hearts to answer this question: What does it truly mean that God came and lived as one of us in our world to show us God’s way? The incarnation was the beginning of the Jesus movement to change the world.

Juliet Vedral 12-04-2019

Compassion. Curiosity. Courage. To author Talia Carner, a writer needs these three qualities to tell a good story — and they are on full display in Carner’s latest historical novel, The Third Daughter. Based on “The Man from Argentina,” and the tales of Tevye the Dairyman and his daughters by Yiddish writer Sholem Aleichem, the book tells the story of the hundreds of Jewish girls from Eastern Europe who were trafficked by the Jewish pimps union, Zwi Migdal, and brought to Argentina and Brazil in the late 19th and early 20th century.

Gareth Higgins 12-04-2019

A door closing tight, shutting out an image of a man sitting on an elegant chair, taking the hand of a subordinate: a firm instruction to keep out. Another door half-open, behind which another man in physical decline sits, alone and afraid of the dark. Two cinematic perspectives on two doors. The first forms the conclusion of Francis Coppola's The Godfather, as Michael Corleone is effectively enthroned as a demonic king. The other may become comparably iconic, as Martin Scorsese's The Irishman’s Philadelphia mobster Frank Sheeran does the most he can to feel regret, to feel anything, after a life of theft, killing, and nihilism masquerading as protecting the ones he loves.