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Danielle Tumminio
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Danielle Tumminio is an Episcopal priest, life coach, and writer. When not lecturing at at or Yale or Tufts or speaking about her book, "God and Harry Potter at Yale: Teaching Faith and Fantasy Fiction in an Ivy League Classroom," she can be found working on her Ph.D. at Boston University. In her spare time, she enjoys yoga, biking, scuba diving, and singing country music when no one is listening.

Entries by Danielle Tumminio

An Open Letter to Tom Perkins

(1) Comments | Posted February 20, 2014 | 4:43 PM

Dear Mr. Perkins,

Recently, you told Adam Lashinsky at a speaking engagement that you had an idea that would change the world. You said that the government should enact the "Tom Perkins system" for voting rights whereby, "If you pay a million dollars in taxes, you should get...

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Screenwriter of My Girl Writes First Novel About Faith: An Interview With Laurice Molinari

(2) Comments | Posted February 11, 2014 | 9:55 AM

Many of you may know Laurice Molinari as the screenwriter for the popular film My Girl, but now she's taken on a new genre: children's fiction. I recently received a copy of her newly released first novel called The Ether, a book about a young boy who learns...

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What Do We Really Know About David From the Bible?: An Interview With Joel Baden

(70) Comments | Posted December 6, 2013 | 4:54 PM

David is one of the most prominent figures of the Bible, a person whose life and lineage shaped both Judaism and Christianity in crucial ways. So when I discovered a new book called The Historical David: The Real Life of an Invented Hero, I was fascinated by the...

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How Katniss Everdeen and Ancient Rome Unite to Teach an Ethics of Peace for our Time

(3) Comments | Posted November 22, 2013 | 4:22 PM

Let's play a game: I will describe a location, and you decide whether it's The Roman Empire around the time Jesus lived or Panem, the dystopian nation where The Hunger Games trilogy takes place.

Question 1: This location has a class of people whose wealth desensitizes it to the needs...

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Are Christian Themes Present in Ender's Game Film?

(28) Comments | Posted November 6, 2013 | 12:30 PM

Much has been made of Orson Scott Card's Mormon heritage and the influence it might have had on his beloved series, Ender's Game. But what about the new film? Does it have Mormon -- or even broadly Christian -- overtones?

At first glance, Ender's Game appears to be fairly a-religious:...

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So a Priest Attends a Seance...

(21) Comments | Posted October 31, 2013 | 1:48 PM

According to popular lore, it's the night when the veil between the spirit world and ours is thinnest, when the dead are closest to the living, when we are called to remember those who passed before us. Wiccans and Pagans call it the Eve of Samhain; Christians call...

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The Ultimate Wedding Day Battle: Priest vs. Photographer

(48) Comments | Posted September 25, 2013 | 2:01 PM

The wedding of Rob and Noelle Ruehle was off to an idyllic start: sunny skies, an elegant bride and groom, friends and family seated on a manicured lawn.

Then the priest turned to face the video camera, and the following altercation occurred:

"Please, sirs, leave," the...

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How an Episcopal Priest Is Using Stories and Humor to Teach Others About Christianity

(1) Comments | Posted August 27, 2013 | 5:22 PM

Episcopal priest Kathryn Banakis wants us to discover that Christianity wouldn't be what it is without stories, and not just the Bible's stories either. Our stories matter too. Banakis is particularly interested in showing how God didn't stop revealing important lessons to us humans with the last page of the...

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Don't Judge a Book of Mormon By Its Cover: How Mormons Are Discovering the Musical as a Conversion Tool

(1005) Comments | Posted May 13, 2013 | 5:04 PM

I met two Mormon missionaries, Elders Skyler Fenn and Jacob Chapman, on a chilly spring evening when my husband and I attended the musical "The Book of Mormon." They were handing out copies of the LDS Scriptures -- aka the original Book of Mormon -- near the theatre...

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Pamela Olson on Life Inside the Palestinian Territories

(55) Comments | Posted March 25, 2013 | 10:50 PM

I visited Israel and Palestine for the first time in the summer of 2008, and like many who step on the Holy Land's soil, I was confused, overwhelmed, and struck by the intensity of everything from the heat to the political climate. If you have already visited this part of...

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Candida Moss on Whether Christian Martyrs are a Myth

(281) Comments | Posted February 24, 2013 | 12:31 AM

I recently got my hands on a copy of Dr. Candida Moss's latest book, "The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom." As a person of faith and an academic, I was fascinated and challenged by some of her findings about how...

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Is Gandalf God in The Hobbit?

(101) Comments | Posted December 13, 2012 | 2:36 PM

I emerged from The Hobbit with a nagging feeling, like a toddler might get after a birthday party where no one brought out cake.

"I'm confused," I said to my husband, Eric. "Why did Gandalf need Bilbo and the dwarves?"

(Aside: The Hobbit is about a tiny little character with...

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Why Jerusalem Rocket Attacks Change Everything

(37) Comments | Posted November 19, 2012 | 9:36 AM

My husband entered the kitchen last night, his face ashen. I was unpacking my suitcase after a trip to Jerusalem, pulling out bargained-for spices, recycling drafts of a talk I gave at a conference on peace and reconciliation.

"Hamas sent missiles into Jerusalem," he said. "Three missiles."

"That's not possible,"...

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On Loving The Unlikeable Neighbor in J.K. Rowling's New Novel

(1) Comments | Posted October 12, 2012 | 1:57 PM

It's not easy to love the characters in "The Casual Vacancy": They don't wage an epic war against evil. They don't have warm, fuzzy names like Neville Longbottom or Albus Dumbledore.

They don't trade Chocolate Frog Cards.

Instead of the earnest likes of Hagrid and Luna Lovegood peppering the...

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Saving Christianity Through Love of God and Neighbor: A Response to Ross Douthat

(10) Comments | Posted July 16, 2012 | 2:52 PM

On Saturday, Ross Douthat's scathing New York Times op-ed declared the fate of Episcopalians like myself: As long as we keep changing, we will die.

At the end of his editorial, Douthat challenges Episcopalians and other liberal Christians to locate their essence, their unchanging identity, something that...

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A Female Episcopal Priest Visits a Mormon Temple (PHOTOS)

(1562) Comments | Posted April 22, 2012 | 8:00 AM

As I stood in front of the new Mormon Temple in Liberty, Mo., it struck me as ironic that close to 175 years ago, Mormons were forced out of this same state.

Whereas the Missouri public once urged their governor to force Joseph Smith and his followers out...

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Is Birth Control Coverage Motivated by Religious Freedom or Religious Bullying?

(0) Comments | Posted March 13, 2012 | 10:44 AM

Even though Rush Limbaugh apologized to Sandra Fluke, the birth control controversy isn't over. While the Obama administration continues negotiations with Catholic bishops, the New Hampshire House of Representatives passed a law to exempt employers from providing contraception on religious grounds to their employees.

Supporters of this bill -- or...

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What A Little Girl Named Penny Can Teach Us About Faith And Disability

(3) Comments | Posted February 21, 2012 | 10:08 AM

Imagine this: You and your spouse are expecting your first child. You feel the baby kick. You paint a nursery and pick out a crib that converts to a big kid's bed. In the mornings, you worry about building up a college fund and in the evenings, you dream that...

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10 Years Later: Clergy Response to the Sex Abuse Scandal

(58) Comments | Posted January 25, 2012 | 2:50 PM

This January marks the 10th anniversary of the clergy sex abuse scandal that rocked the foundations of the Roman Catholic Church and other Christian denominations. What began as a series of news reports in the Boston Globe about six Roman Catholic priests and the cover-up arranged by Cardinal Law led...

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Lowering Holiday Stress With the Help of Handel's Messiah

(4) Comments | Posted December 20, 2011 | 1:25 PM

Pitch rises at Christmas.

Stores hire seasonal workers to open earlier, close later; mail carriers rush to deliver presents wrapped for nieces and nephews by exhausted aunts and uncles who feel guilty they don't live closer, can't deliver the gifts in person; church musicians and clergy work extended hours,...

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