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. 6, March 22

A Delayed Meeting
I WAS PARKING my car along the curb when I saw him again. Over the years I'd often seen him, always walking an old black Labrador retriever along the sidewalks of the elegant neighborhood where our church is located. Like the dog, the man had scruffy...
Blue Valentine
Blue Valentine Directed by Derek Cianfrance Starring Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling Marriage is a juicy topic for filmmakers, but few movies get made about happy ones. More common is the dissection of a once-happy union that is coming...
Budget Cuts Hurt Poor, Say Religious Groups
Get ready for more undernourished infants, dangerously cold homes and disease-stricken communities in developing countries if proposed federal budget cuts become law. That's the message coming from left-to-center religious advocacy groups, who've...
Do Christian Athletes Seek Big-Dollar Contracts like Everyone Else?
As contract talks broke down between Albert Pujols and the Cardinals, St. Louis baseball fans began nervously asking themselves a host of questions. He's a Cardinal for life, right? He wouldn't go to Wrigley Field because he likes winning too much,...
Forgiveness Expert Explores Religious Dimension
FOR MORE than a quarter of a century, psychologist Robert D. Enright has been a pioneer in the scientific study of forgiveness--the kind of guy Time magazine once dubbed "the forgiveness trailblazer." Enright has probed the mental and physical benefits...
Gay Cause Leads in PCUSA Voting
More than halfway through the balloting by regional presbyteries, a proposal to permit ordination of openly gay and lesbian pastors in the nation's largest Presbyterian denomination holds a lead. The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)...
Hanson, WCC Criticize U.S. Veto of UN Resolution on Israeli Settlements
PRESIDING BISHOP Mark S. Hanson of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America said he was "dismayed" that the United States vetoed a UN Security Council resolution that would have condemned the illegal Israeli settlements on Palestinian land. Hanson...
Huckabee Draws Heat for Anti-Islam Remarks
Southern Baptist preacher and former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has landed in hot water for comments critical of Islam. In an interview on Fox & Friends the former Arkansas governor and potential 2012 presidential hopeful criticized...
Imagination and Hope
OLGA GRUSHIN is the author of two critically acclaimed novels, The Dream Life of Sukhanov and The Line. Both grapple with the legacy of the Soviet Union and the depths of human character. Raised in Moscow, Grushin was the first Soviet citizen to graduate...
Mexico's Crisis of Faith
For all the crises and confrontations that the United States faces around the world, some observers think that the most alarming situation of all might be on our own doorstep. Back in 2008, the U.S. Joint Forces Command warned that both Mexico and...
Muslims and Copts Together
UNLIKE THE OTHER Middle Eastern countries experiencing popular uprisings, Egypt has a significant indigenous historic Christian presence, and Christians make up about 10 percent of the population. Perhaps one of the chief ramifications of the protests...
Prayer as Crucible: How My Mind Has Changed
THERE IS A SENSE in which my mind has changed only once in the course of my career as a theologian, but once instigated, this change was so dramatic and transformative as to sweep everything else uncomfortably in its wake. Like a subterranean explosion,...
Pro-Union Clergy Voices Enter Wisconsin Debate
The pro-union rallies in Wisconsin have a retro feel to them--particularly for people of faith. At one time clergy and faith-based groups were on the front lines of the American labor movement, but priorities shifted with the rise of the religious...
Reflections on the Lectionary
Sunday, March 27 Exodus 17:1-7 TRANSLATED LITERALLY, the Spanish word desahogarse means "to undrown oneself." It refers to disclosing a story of grief or difficulty in a way that liberates the teller, or at least lightens her load. Have you traveled...
Religious Bodies Oppose Lower Tax Deductions
FOR THE third time in three years President Obama's proposed budget will attempt to reduce tax deductions for high-end charitable donors, and for the third time nonprofits and religious organizations are pushing back. Many religious nonprofits,...
Sacramental Sex: Divine Love and Human Intimacy
WE WERE CAUGHT off guard, and so we stalled for time. It was a cold New England morning. We'd already finished breakfast, brushed teeth, pulled on boots, coats, hats and gloves and loaded our two children into the car for the ride to school, preschool...
Scenes of Grief
NEWS OF Reynolds Price's death on January 20 prompted me to revisit several of my favorite books by him. Price taught at Duke University and wrote novels, poetry and essays that deal with religion and theological themes. Raised a Methodist in rural...
Suffering through Lent
WHEN ASH Wednesday arrived in 2009, I couldn't muster the courage to go to church. The thought of having one of our pastors make the sign of the cross on my forehead and say, "You are dust and to dust you shall return" was more than I could handle....
The Union Struggle
Labor unions, wrote Pope John Paul II in his encyclical Laborem Exercens, are "an indispensable element in social life ... indeed a mouthpiece for the struggle for social justice." Having seen how Poland's workers fared under capitalism and communism,...
Waiting to Wed: Young Adults on Sex and Marriage
SOME OUTSIDE OBSERVERS look at the relationship scene among young adults and consider that it is entirely about short-term hookups and that the majority of emerging adults are avoiding lasting and meaningful intimate relationships in favor of random...

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