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. 127, No. 3, February 9

A Consensus on Religious Liberties
Despite public school controversies that generate sparks every December, church-state columnist Charles Haynes of the Freedom Forum recently wrote, "The First Amendment solution is stunningly simple: Schools should plan holiday programs that are educational...
Church Workers Caught in Haiti's Devastation
Nearly a week after the devastating earthquake, with the capital city suffering from a shortage of water, food, medical help, gasoline, housing and safety from looters, Haiti's Episcopal bishop Jean Zache Duracin rejected an offer to evacuate him from...
Crazy Heart
Crazy Heart Adapted for the screen and directed by Scott Cooper Starring Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Robert Duvall The title of Scott Cooper's debut film, Crazy Heart, comes from a song by the movie's protagonist, a country singer...
Ecumenical Outcry Follows Coptic Christian Killings
The drive-by gunfire killing of six Coptic Christians in Egypt at their church on January 6, the eve of their Christmas celebration, has drawn widespread shock from the Vatican and church leaders in Europe, the Middle East and Australia. Jerusalem...
Executions Up in 2009, but Death Sentences Drop
The number of state-sponsored executions jumped 41 percent in 2009 even as the number of death penalty court sentences dropped, according to a report from the Washington-based Death Penalty Information Center. The 52 executions nationwide last year...
Generational Ties: Bridging the Gaps
I BEGAN THE VISIT with "Hello, I'm the new pastor at the Presbyterian church." An innocent enough introduction, I thought. "Wow. But you're so young!" came the reply. "Well, I just started. And sure, I'm on the young side," I said, hoping to...
Homegrown Counterterrorism
Terrorism has a homegrown dimension. Many of the terrorist plots uncovered since 9/11 have involved U.S.-born or naturalized U.S. citizens. For example: A white American convert to Islam is suspected of plotting to attack U.S. military personnel...
I Statements
I REGRETTED TO SEE in the January 2 New York Times that Peter Steinfels was writing his final "Beliefs" column. I've rarely missed a Steinfels column over the years. They were consistently respectful and totally devoid of either simplistic advocacy...
Jordan Files Complaint over Dead Sea Scrolls
Jordan has complained to a United Nations agency after Canada refused to seize a display of Dead Sea Scrolls at a recent exhibit in Toronto. Jordan says the ancient manuscripts, which had been on loan from the Israel Antiquities Authority, were...
New York's Elite Churches Struggle with Recession
More than a century ago, when Fifth Avenue was lined with mansions, its houses of worship were built, supported and populated by Vanderbilts, Astors and Belmonts. It was, in the words of the late Kate Simon in her 1978 book, Fifth Avenue: A Very...
Our Life Story
TOM WALKED into my office looking glum. He tossed his backpack on the floor, fell into a chair by my desk, sighed, and then rummaged through his bag for the registrar's form. Tom is a first-year seminary student, and I'm his counselor. We walked through...
Reflections on the Lectionary
Sunday, February 14 Exodus 34:29-35; Luke 9:28-36 WHEN I WAS in the fifth grade, I took an old shoebox from the hall closet and wrapped it in construction paper. Then I glued a triangular prism inside the box and positioned a penlight to shine...
The Past Isn't Past: The Weight of Congregational History
WHO CARES ABOUT history? I think about this question a lot because of my job as director of the Congregational Library in Boston. My association with this venerable Yankee institution, a large collection of things both important and inexplicable, means...
Travelers' Blessings: An Interview with Rick Steves
RICK STEVES got into the travel business by teaching travel classes at the University of Washington in Seattle and working as a tour leader in the summers. His 1979 book Europe Through the Back Door emphasized how to cut costs and encouraged travelers...
Up in the Air
Up in the Air Directed by Jason Reitman Starring George Clooney, Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga We are not swans," declares Ryan Bingham (played by George Clooney), summing up human nature to a crowded conference room. "We're sharks." The...
Vampires among Us
Met any vampires lately? They are unavoidable in popular culture, from Stephanie Meyer's books Twilight and New Moon (both made into films) to television fare such as True Blood and The Vampire Diaries. And though Buffy the Vampire Slayer may have...