As the Iraq war rages and President Bush continues a fruitless search for weapons of mass destruction, a brutal school shooting in a suburb of St. Louis leaves four teenagers traumatized. This painfully beautiful novel by Anne Valente, who teaches creative writing in Santa Fe, captures the complexity of human responses to violence.
Matt talks with Cornelius Plantinga Jr., the former president of Calvin Theological Seminary, about miracles, the collapse of the sacred/secular distinction when “every square inch of creation belongs to Jesus Christ,” and why preachers should read more fiction.
An elementary school in Baltimore is sending children who misbehave to a Mindful Moment Room. In a room with lamps, decorations, and plush pillows, the students are encouraged to use breathing and meditation practices and to talk through the incident that got them sent to the room. There were no suspensions at the school last year. A nearby high school used the same approach to discipline problems and saw a decline in suspensions and an increase in attendance rates (Upworthy.com, September 22).