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. 122, No. 14, July 12

Awakened: A UCC Revival Meeting
AS AN Episcopalian, I was not entirely sure what to expect at the annual meeting of the Massachusetts conference of the United Church of Christ. When I mentioned my uncertainty to a colleague, he added his own views: "Massachusetts. UCC. That's the...
Be Happy: The Health and Wealth Gospel
WHEN SHE CAME to church it was a big event. She wore her nicest dress and a grand Sunday hat. But then she wouldn't appear again for months. Every time I visited her she would assure me that she wasn't backsliding. "Don't worry--when I'm not at church...
Bush Praises Moderate Church in SBC Speech
Touting his desire to build a "more compassionate society," President George W. Bush thanked Southern Baptists assembled for their annual meeting last month for being "soldiers in the army of compassion." The president also highlighted, apparently...
Deaths
* Theodore A. Gill, 85, a prominent Presbyterian theologian and educator who was also a civil rights activist, ecumenist and magazine editor, died in Princeton, New Jersey, on June 10 after a lengthy illness. In the 1960s he was one of a group of white...
Fighting Words
SINCE I ALWAYS played in the band, I never learned the words of my schools' fight songs. That's just as well, if Warren St. John's account of such songs is accurate: they are "anachronistic," "out of date," "bloodthirsty," "chauvinist," "white," "cheesy,"...
Fostering Family
Sunday, July 17 Romans 8:12-25 THE OTHER DAY my husband, Ken, and I splashed and swam in a pool, then ate burgers and drank iced tea at a barbecue hosted by our friends Ann Marie and Patricia. We are pleased and proud of the honorary titles "Uncle...
Into the Future
OVER THE YEARS I have attended many commencement ceremonies as a parent, occasionally as the speaker and this year, for the first time, as a grandparent. One ceremony that stands out in my mind is when my daughter received her M.D. from Ohio State....
'Loose' Emergent Churches to Add More Structure
The Emergent church movement--activities so loosely organized by design that many proponents call it the "Emergent conversation'--has succumbed to its own growing popularity 'and named its first national director. Or rather, make that "national...
Loyalty Oath: A Matter of Ultimate Allegiance
TWO YEARS AGO one of my students wrote a master's thesis defending just war, then joined the U.S. Air Force to train as a fighter pilot. I suppose you could look at this as pedagogical success: I'm a teacher who helped one of my students turn the corner...
Moving On
WE ARE LIVING, as Adam said to Eve, in a time of transition. Our son John graduated from high school and turned 18 on the same day. His brother, Andy, turned ten on the day of John's senior prom. The boys are turning comers, and their parents are turning,...
Posting Decalogue OK-Sometimes
Advocates for church-state separation generally gave a collective sigh of relief last month when the Supreme Court ruled that the posting of the Ten Commandments inside two Kentucky courthouses is unconstitutional. But at the same time the court, closely...
Pray as You Can
Sunday, July 24 Romans 8:26-39 Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52 I WAS RAISED in a middle-class, suburban family for whom religion, like sex, was a taboo topic. My Uncle Paul, a monastic known as Brother Leo, would join us each year for Thanksgiving dinner,...
Quirks of Grace: When Strange Things Happen
MINISTRY IS befuddling either in the way the people we serve are just so very strange, or in the way the grace of God catches us off guard--or both. Granted, some out there "get" the liturgy and sound theology we're offering them, and in admittedly...
RCA Struggles over Gay Issues and Growth
AFTER A FORMER seminary president was defrocked for residing at his daughter's gay wedding, the top official of the Reformed Church in America urged the denomination not to be paralyzed by disagreements over homosexuality. Delegates to the RCA's...
Reading Privileges
WHICH CARD WOULD Americans relinquish first--their driver's license, Social Security card, voter's registration or public library card? All four documents link us to a larger political and social reality, and each symbolizes something about the privileges...
Report: No 'Overt' Faith Bias at Academy, but Insensitivities Abound
A military panel that examined the religious climate at the U.S. Air Force Academy has found no "overt religious discrimination" but did see "a failure to fully accommodate all members' needs." While the report issued June 22 did not find institutional...
Rick Warren Publicly Pursuing Programs against World Poverty
Usually when the words "evangelical" and "poverty" appear in the same sentence, the minister at the helm is Jim Wallis, Ron Sider or Tony Campolo. When Rick Warren is written and talked about, it's almost never in the context of any political issue....
Seeing through Illusion
I AM AN AVID reader of graduation speeches. A graduation speaker must convey an idea under difficult conditions and in a short time--an almost impossible challenge. So I am fascinated when I find a speech that works. This year's best speech had this...
Sensual Morality Play
LATINO CINEMA has a long tradition of tweaking the Catholic Church for its supposed hypocrisy, involvement in secular politics and manhandling of sexual issues. Thirty-nine-year-old Argentine filmmaker Lucrecia Martel now joins in with her own rants...
Time Out: A Sabbath Sensibility
WHEN I WAS a child I could hardly wait for Wilhelm Roepke, my grandfather, to arrive at our farm. Though he had formally "retired' after a lifetime of farming in Poland, Germany and southern Alberta, he couldn't stay away from the fields and the barns....
What God Knows: The Debate on 'Open Theism'
THEOLOGIAN JOHN SANDERS lost his college teaching job recently because of his endorsement of 'open theism"--the view that the future is not determined by God. His ouster from Huntington College in Indiana followed three years of nasty debate within...