The Valparaiso Project on the Education and Formation of People in Faith, based at Valparaiso University in Indiana, has been encouraging people to think about and live the communal practices that form Christian existence.
A half hour before the Sunday morning service begins, St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco already displays the holy chaos that characterizes its worship. In the domed entrance hall a choir is practicing motets.
As anyone following the news knows, Palestinians and Israelis offer two entirely different accounts of the violence (and two different accounts of what has happened in the region since the emergence of the state of Israel in 1948). The siege at the Church of the Nativity is one more example.
Why september 11?” That question, said Israeli peace activist Uri Avnery, needs to be raised. “Preparations for the terrorist attack had been going on for years. Why did Osama bin Laden choose September, 2001 instead of a year ago, or [why not] wait until next year?”
Next to the minaret of Milwaukee’s Islamic Society a new sign appeared after the horrific events of September 11: “Our Hearts and Prayers Are with the Victims and Their Families.” That message was emphasized at the mosque’s prayer service on September 14, the national day of remembrance for all those who have suffered as a result of September 11’s terrorist attacks
What was it . . . about this place that made him feel that his life was under judgement?" Adam Dalgliesh wonders during a sleepless night at St. Anselm's Theological College, the setting of P. D. James's new novel. Not only James's durable detective but all of the other major characters in residence at the college during the week of a dramatic murder find their lives brought under judgment.
A terrified boy huddles in his father’s arms moments before an Israeli bullet kills him; a baby girl sits smiling in a stroller moments before a Palestinian bullet extinguishes her life. These are but two recent reports of the violence that blights life in the land where the Prince of Peace once called humanity to follow him.
In her new novel, Doris Lessing gives a fresh twist to an old idea: What would our world seem like to an alien who found himself among us, and how would we react to such a being? But Ben Lovat is not a creature from another planet; he is from our own distant past--a throwback to a species near the beginning of human evolution.
I think that writing is therapeutic. I agree with the psychologist who said that creativity is the successful resolution of internal conflict. But when it comes to autobiography, I myself don’t want the beasts roaring around. It’s not that I’m suppressing them. I know who and what they are. But I think there’s something a bit self-indulgent in feeling that we can say absolutely everything. I think there are things that have happened in our lives that we have to accept and come to terms with, but I don’t think that we necessarily have to write about them.
One of the best things about William Willimon's new book is that he introduces us to serious, spiritually significant works of fiction and makes us want to read them. One of the worst is that we might be tempted to take Willimon's book as a shortcut, using his summaries of great novels as a substitute for reading them.