What? Do you want them to commit suicide?” That was the response of Sis Levin, a Columbia University specialist on finding alternatives to violence, when asked if Palestinians should be encouraged to engage in nonviolent demonstrations against the Israeli military occupation.
In exploring the minister’s public obligations, it would seem sensible to bypass the activity of worship and concentrate on the minister’s social service, on the grounds that the latter bears most directly on politics. Politics seems far removed from the liturgical.
People don’t read on the Web—they scan. Researchers Jakob Nielsen and John Morkes found that 79 percent of their test users always scanned Web pages and only 16 percent read them word-by-word (www.useit.com/alertbox/ 9710a.html).
Although ministers like to think of themselves as members of the professional middle class, they are hanging on to that status by their fingernails. Male clergy especially are pursuing their vocations despite a strong “fear of falling,” to use Barbara Ehrenreich’s phrase.
In this new millennium, globalization and pluralism are preoccupying themes. Theologians across the spectrum struggle with both, as do businesspeople who work in global markets, executives who wrestle with “spirituality in the work place” and parents who care about preparing children to live in this globalized and pluralistic world.