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. 129, No. 1, January 11

A Room of Our Own
THE FOUR OF US women have a room of our own. One wall is all fireplace and mantle and built-in bookshelves, and another is fitted with clean glass panes overlooking rain falling on mossy woods. Behind me, the open floor plan puts our dirty breakfast...
A Weary Prophet: Jeremiah's Vexing Task
"Under the weight of your hand I sat alone." (Jer. 15:17) WHEN THE YELLOW buses roll each fall, I remember my elementary schoolteachers and say a prayer of thanksgiving, recalling each name and face. Mildred Chaffin, my fifth-grade teacher at Elbert...
Can There Be Too Much 'Tebowing'?
Thanks to Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow, sports and religion have become the topic du jour. Arguments over Tebow's path to the Hall of Fame can be waged, but it's clear that his name is a rarity: the proper noun (Tebow) can be used as a verb...
Climate Talks Offer No Help to Poor Nations
United Nations climate talks achieved minimal success in late 2011, say Christian leaders and activists, agreeing with environmentalists and other experts who claim the outcome at Durban, South Africa, did too little to respond to the impact of climate...
Feedback Frenzy
PERHAPS IT'S ser-flattery, but I'm wondering why everyone wants my opinion these days. Hardly a day goes by that I am not asked to share my judgment of some product, experience or person. The deep discount airport hotel where I bunked for a few hours...
George Harrison as Theological Rock Star
As the lead guitarist of the world's preeminent rock band and a prolific song writer, the Beatles' George Harrison has secured his place in pop culture history. But his greatest legacy may be the way his decades-long spiritual quest shaped the ways...
Gingrich's Rhetoric Stirs GOP's Jewish Activists
GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich ignited an audience of Republican Jewish activists in Washington by promising to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. And he was just getting started. Gingrich also promised to use American dollars...
How to Follow the Leader: Five Habits of Healthy Congregations
WHEN THEIR PASTOR'S tenure came to a sudden and disappointing end, members of First Church took the usual steps: they called an interim minister and formed a pastoral search committee. But then they took an unusual step: they created a leadership task...
Humanitarian Concerns Stall Cluster Bomb Accord
Religious leaders and disarmament campaigners hailed the decision in Geneva by 50 countries to derail a proposal backed by the United States, Russia, China, India and Israel to create a new global accord on cluster bombs, contending that it did not...
'Living My Truth': United Methodist Pastor Amy DeLong
UNITED METHODIST minister Amy DeLong was charged by the United Methodist Church with violating the church's Book of Discipline on two counts: 1) continuing her ministry while being a "self-avowed practicing homosexual" and 2) conducting a holy union...
Mainline Moves to Trim Bureaucracy
A list of the Episcopal Church's 75 commissions, committees, agencies and boards spilled over eight PowerPoint slides during a recent presentation by its new chief operating officer, Bishop Stacy Sauls. By his count, there are also nearly 50 departments...
Myopia of the Market
Since the years of Reagan and Thatcher, we have heard a steady drumbeat about the limitations of government. In turn, the free market has been extolled for its supposedly boundless benefits. Perhaps it is time--or past time--that we recognize that...
Pathway to Citizenship
Newt Gingrich's call for a more humane policy toward undocumented immigrants produced the usual reaction from other Republican, presidential candidates: they accused him of advocating "amnesty. The former House Speaker had observed, "If you've been...
Peer Power: The Promise of Clergy Support Groups
WHEN I CALLED a group of pastors to ask if they wanted to join a clergy peer group, they were understandably a bit skeptical at first. They didn't need one more meeting to attend. And they had already participated in other kinds of clergy groups--regional...
Prayer Concern: Remembering All the Victims of War
IN THE CHURCH I attend, populated largely by people who might describe themselves as left-leaning and politically aware, the prayers have for months included a prayer for the families of American soldiers who died that week. The names of the soldiers...
Public Image Worries SBC, Pleases United Methodists
A task force that studied whether the nationwide Southern Baptist Convention should drop its regional name tag may have encouraged advocates for change after its own polling agency showed high negative responses to "Southern Baptist." Proponents for...
Reflections on the Lectionary
Sunday, January 15 1 Samuel 3:1-10, (11-20);John 1:43-51 SOME YEARS AGO, when I was in my first pastoral appointment, I met an 11-year-old named Victor at youth court. A friend had asked me to serve as translator for Victor's father, who spoke...
Russian Orthodox Join Election Fraud Protests
After a week of mounting protest over alleged fraud in Russia's parliamentary election, the Russian Orthodox Church has called for stricter control over the election process--evidence of the extent to which anger has spread in Russian society. A...
Table Manners: Unexpected Grace at Communion
COMMUNION IS a vital part of my week. My tradition, the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), has staked its identity on the weekly celebration of the Lord's Supper. Each week we celebrate an open table: anyone who wishes to follow Christ is invited...
U.S., Cuban Church Leaders Seek Normalized Relations
Church leaders from ecumenical councils in the U.S. and Cuba wrapped up a five-day meeting in Havana on December 2 with a call for "normalized relations" between the two countries. A joint statement said that the long U.S. embargo against Cuba and...
War Horse
War Horse Directed by Steven Spielberg Starring Jeremy Irvine, Peter Mullan, David Thewlis, Tom Hiddleston, Benedict Cumberbatch and Emily Watson [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] War Horse is ideal material for Steven Spielberg. His adaptation of...