The Christian Century

Founded on January 4, 1900, The Christian Century is a biweekly magazine published by The Christian Century. Its subject is religion. The Rev. John M. Buchanan is Editor and Publisher and David Heim is Executive Editor.

Articles from Vol. 126, No. 13, June 30

Beauty and Delight
MY MOTHER STUDIED painting at the New York Art Students League with Joseph Solman, the American artist who died last year at age 99. Solman was briefly a member, along with Mark Rothko, of an artistic vanguard known as The Ten, which in the 1930s rejected...
Before Muslims, Obama Uses Family Background to Urge U.S.-Islam Respect
Dogged by persistent but untrue rumors that he is a closet Muslim, Barack Obama's presidential campaign carefully sidestepped questions about his Muslim ancestry. But in Cairo, Egypt, on June 4 Obama quoted the "Holy Qur'an," greeted his audience with...
Breaking Glass Ceilings at Large Churches
Methodists opened the ordained ministry to women in 1956, and today female ministers account for about 20 percent of the clergy in the denomination. And 14 bishops heading the 50 U.S. regional jurisdictions of the United Methodist Church are women--28...
Church Netiquette
LIKE MOST PASTORS, I claim that the face-to-face meeting is the best way to do the ministry of the church, but you would never guess it by my work habits. Also like most pastors, I spend an enormous amount of time reading and composing e-mails. ...
Deaths
* Franklin H. Littell, who pioneered research studies on the Nazi Holocaust and on the history of Anabaptists, died at age 92 in his home in Merion Station, Pennsylvania, on May 23. His graduate seminar on the German church struggle and the Holocaust...
For the Glory of God: Conductor John Nelson
JOHN NELSON IS a world-renowned conductor noted for his commitment to contemporary sacred music. He was born in Costa Rica to American missionary parents. He attended Wheaton College and the Juilliard School of Music. He founded and serves as the artistic...
Media Priest's Conversion Strains Ecumenical Ties
In the nearly 500 years since the Church of England split with the Roman Catholic Church, a fair number of converts have crossed from one church to the other. Still, the path can be rocky, as Alberto Cutie--the most recent high-profile convert--discovered...
Moderate Baptist Church Calls Second Woman Pastor
A North Carolina Baptist church has called its second woman pastor--an act that is still rare among Baptist moderates, despite the fact that virtually all moderate and progressive Baptist institutions support women's eligibility for the ministry. ...
New Hampshire Governor Signs Gay Marriage Bill
New Hampshire became the sixth state to legalize same-sex marriage as Governor John Lynch signed a bill rewritten slightly by lawmakers to ensure that religious organizations and their employees would not be forced to participate in same-sex wedding...
Pro-Choice Perspective
THE MURDER OF abortion provider George Tiller prompts me to do something I do not like to do--venture into the issue of abortion. My hesitation is not because I do not have a position. I do. I believe that matters of reproductive rights and responsibilities...
Reflections on the Lectionary
Sunday, July 5 Mark 6:1-13 JERRY'S PHONE CALL came as a pleasant blast from the past. He and I had attended elementary school together, but then my family moved 50 miles away and I hadn't seen Jerry for six years. Now we were about to "split...
Star Trek
Star Trek. Directed by J.J. Abrams. Starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Eric Bana. A riveting sci-fi adventure, Star Trek is the first of the summer blockbusters that audiences can truly care about. Its action is rooted in feeling rather...
Summer in the City
If, as Karl Barth said, God may speak through a blossoming shrub or a dead dog, I reckon God may be found at rock festivals. At least that is my hope every spring as the Chicago winter finally eases its grip and I begin planning rock music outings....
Taking Exception
RECENT ADVANCES for same-sex marriage have raised important issues concerning religious liberty. The four New England states (Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont) that recently recognized same-sex marriage have all had to consider how broadly...
The Cairo Speech
President Obama's June 4 speech in Cairo was just that--a speech. As commentators at home and abroad pointed out, it will take deeds to give substance to his call for "a new beginning" in relations between the U.S. and the Muslim world. But words are...
The Church on Facebook
OREON TOLD ME she's praying for you," my husband, Gary, said in between bites. He and I were having dinner after work one night when I was in the throes of a particularly stressful time at work. Gary is a pastor at a downtown Chicago church, and Oreon...
Will Tiller Murder Alter Abortion Debate?
The setting of the murder of physician George Tiller--a Sunday morning inside the Lutheran church where he was a member--counters the image of late-term abortion providers as secularists, casting him more as a churchgoing martyr than a godless murderer....