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. 128, No. 10, May 17

Certified Copy
Certified Copy Directed by Abbas Kiarostami Starring Juliette Binoche and William Shimell [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Certified Copy, the first English-language film by the Iranian writer-director Abbas Kiarostami, is a road-trip meditation...
Churches Slowly Rebound from Recession
The recession was a double-barrel blow to American congregations: directly hurting their budgets while increasing the demands for counseling, emergency housing and other social services. But the worst seems to be over, according to a report that...
Episcopal Future: Is Anglican Reconciliation Possible?
THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH in the United States (EC), like other denominations, has been in crisis over human sexuality. What is different for the EC is that it faces, in its debates, the question of whether or not its vocation is to be an American Protestant...
In Praise of Imbalance: The Holy Rhythms of Life
EVERYONE is talking about balance. It's like the Holy Grail. We all want to know where to find it. We want a balanced checkbook, a balanced diet and a balanced portfolio. Most of all, we are striving for the right balance between our work lives and...
Kmiec's Gospel Falls Flat at State Department
The State Department has a "rigidly narrow" view of diplomacy that neglects religion's role in foreign affairs, a prominent ambassador charged as he announced his resignation in mid-April. Other foreign-policy experts have another name for it: Religion...
Moving Parts: Liturgical Body Language
MORE THAN 20 years ago when our son was seven years old, I took him to the New York Auto Show at the vast Jacob Javits Center on the west side of Manhattan. Ben and I arrived midmorning to find that the place was already packed. Within half an hour...
Nancy Hardesty, Pioneer Evangelical Feminist, Dies
Nancy A. Hardesty, one of the founders of evangelical Christian feminism, died April 8 in Atlanta after two years of treatment for pancreatic cancer. She was 69. Hardesty, in recent years a professor of religion at Clemson University, coauthored...
Obama Reflects on Beliefs at Prayer Breakfast
In a pre-Easter prayer breakfast at the White House, President Obama said Jesus' death and resurrection "puts everything else in perspective." Using the kind of personal religious language he once shied away from in public, Obama spoke of "the pain...
Public Sees Christianity, Capitalism at Odds
Are Christianity and capitalism a marriage made in heaven, as some conservatives believe, or more of a strained relationship in need of some serious counseling? A recent poll found that more Americans (44 percent) see the free market system at odds...
Reflections on the Lectionary
Sunday, May 22 Acts 7:55-60; John 14:1-14 I HOPE YOU'RE LIKE me in at least one respect: I hope you're lucky enough to find yourself frequently working and worshiping with people of other faiths. I have come to believe that the future will be...
Rome to Beatify Anti-Nazi Priests, but Not a Lutheran
RESIDENTS OF the northern German city of Lubeck have long taken pride in four native sons--three Catholic priests and a Lutheran pastor--who were beheaded in quick succession on November 10, 1943, by the Nazi regime. The commingled blood of Catholic...
Safeguarding Women's Health
Imagine you are a young mother living paycheck to paycheck, with no health insurance. Where would you go for a pregnancy test? For treatment of a sexually transmitted disease? To obtain contraceptives? In each case, the answer for millions of Americans...
Same-Sex Complementarity: A Theology of Marriage
A YEAR AGO the bishops of the Episcopal Church received a 95-page report by eight theologians to provide the church with a "theology of same-sex relationships." (The report was published in the Winter 2011 issue of the Anglican Theological Review.)...
Seminary Enrollments Showing Upturn
TOTAL ENROLLMENT is up for the first time in four years at seminaries of the Association of Theological Schools--thanks to the addition of 11 new schools to the roster of North America's accrediting organization. Without those newly admitted seminaries...
Senate Confirms Cook for Religious Freedom Post
A New York minister will soon fill the Obama administration's long-vacant position to oversee international issues of religious freedom. The Senate voted April 14 to confirm Suzan Johnson Cook for the post. The vote, coming after a lengthy and controversial...
Something Game-Changing
WHEN AN ATTENDEE of Rob Bell's congregation said that he was certain that Gandhi is in hell, Bell responded, "Really? Gandhi's in hell? We have confirmation of this? Somebody knows this? Without a doubt?" Some of Bell's evangelical brothers and...
Trouble in Paradise
As Christianity has spread around the globe, interfaith contacts have become vastly more complex. Not only do Christians now interact much more extensively with Buddhists, Hindus and members of other Asian faiths, but they no longer do so solely as...
Welcomed to Ministry
ALMOST 25 YEARS AGO, I began learning to be a minister under the patient guidance of Bernard O. Brown, the dean of the chapel at the University of Chicago and an Episcopal priest. Our Sunday service ended with a Eucharist, celebrated at a large and...
What Do the Bylaws Say? Order and Disorder in the Church
I HAD NEVER concerned myself much with a congregation's bylaws, those documents that prescribe what each board or committee of the congregation is for, who can serve on each one and for how long, and generally how a church is to do its business. As...