RPLI Posts

Public Religion in the News Digest, November 15, 2019

Nicholas Kristof’s review of Karen Armstrong’s The Lost Art of Scripture. Karen Armstrong is a well-known scholar who writes books for an educated laity. I’m sure the book will be a good read. And the review per se, includes some wonderful lines. Here is an example: The ancient Chinese scholar Xunzi complained about an early […]

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Committing Religion in Public, with the Rev. Dr. Ray Owens

What leads a congregation to start what became Oklahoma’s first public partnership school, and what has been their experience with the venture? The Rev. Dr. Ray Owens, senior pastor of Metropolitan Baptist Church in Tulsa, addresses these and other matters related to the Greenwood Leadership Academy. Links mentioned in the podcast: The Metcares Foundation, Greenwood […]

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Why religion and politics are inseparable

[In the following essay, by “politics” I mean the value propositions that feed public policy, rather than electoral politics or public policy per se. I mean the “stuff” that in-forms public policy and how we vote.] Religion and politics—a pairing related to but different from church and state—are inseparable. While sometimes they taste sour together, […]

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Public Religion in the News Digest, November 8, 2019

The President’s latest private meeting with Christian-Right leaders Quote: “Trump’s meeting on Tuesday with at least 25 faith leaders from around the country was not on his public schedule, however it was acknowledged by a brief White House statement later that day. “Johnnie Moore, a member of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom […]

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Public Religion in the News Digest, November 1, 2019

Why Democratic candidates need to talk about religion better and more often. Frank Bruni opinion piece. As a friend pointed out to me, over 20 years ago George Lakoff said the Democrats had a problem using moral and religious categories (and her point was that Marianne Williamson’s approach—using the language of spirituality rather than religion […]

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Committing Faith in Public–The Rev. Shannon Fleck

Welcome to the first podcast of Committing Faith in Public! This is the podcast for people who want to be inspired by individuals and communities of faith doing good work in public. Our guests tell stories of their work to weave a more just, kind, and diversity-inclusive society. Our first guest is the Rev. Shannon […]

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Why E Pluribus Unum Is a Better Motto for Today than “In God We Trust”

On July 30, 1956, President Eisenhower signed the bill that made “In God We Trust” the national motto. This was the first official national motto and replaced the unofficial one, which goes back to the Franklin-Jefferson-Adams era, “E Pluribus Unum”: “Out of many, one.” I wish the nation would revert to “Out of many, one.” […]

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Public Religion News Digest, October 25, 2019

Dallas Officer Convicted of Murder, Victim’s Brother Offers Forgiveness, Judge Gives a Hug Who can offer forgiveness? Does forgiveness require that the offender ask for it? These and other questions are raised, once again, in the extraordinary scenes in the courtroom of a Dallas police officer convicted of murder and the actions of the victim’s […]

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William Barr’s Faith-Based Stance on Public Morality in America

Overall, while there are many places where I fundamentally disagree with Mr. Barr, I do share a concern with him. The concern is not the decline of institutional Christianity, of a particular sort, but is this: Which institutions today are in a strong position to form moral communities and moral citizens that can develop the virtues necessary for a multicultural, shared-space democracy?

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Public Religion News Digest, October 18, 2019

Islamophobia: A Bipartisan Xenophobia in American Politics Liberal Islamophobia? Not as bad or as explicit as on the Right, but it is there.   The Deepening Crisis in Evangelical Christianity “[A]s a starting point, evangelical Christians should acknowledge the profound damage that’s being done to their movement by its braided political relationship—its love affair, to […]

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