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Theology

Real Spiritual: Decline

Brian Akers | Posted 09.01.2015 | Religion
Brian Akers

While traditional church may be in decline mine is just starting to thrive. If I listen to this narrative that "churching" is going out of style I might hang up my hat and think, "I got to the party too late and now no one wants to dance anymore."

40 Essential Books For Any #BlackChurchSyllabus

The Huffington Post | Antonia Blumberg | Posted 08.24.2015 | Religion

The black church has a long and important history in the United States, and it continues to serve as a driver of social justice work in many...

Kendrick Lamar's Theology of Alright

Stanley T. Talbert | Posted 08.13.2015 | Religion
Stanley T. Talbert

If you have seen Kendrick Lamar's latest music video, "Alright," then you know it is arguably one of the most epic music videos of all time. Lamar's "Alright" gives you a lift of hope in the midst of perpetual antipathy for black and brown human lives in our world today.

How #BlackLivesMatter Inspires People To Put Faith Into Action

Religion News Service | Antonia Blumberg | Posted 08.09.2015 | Religion

(RNS) When news broke of the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., a year ago (Aug. 9, 2014), St. Louis seminary professor Leah Gunning Fran...

My New Course on the Bible in Popular Music

Michael Gilmour | Posted 07.29.2015 | Religion
Michael Gilmour

Conversations about religion in art, and more precisely religious meanings in art are tricky. Lyricists obviously generate those conversations by their use of religious imagery but the relationship between music and (perceived) spiritual meaning has at least as much or more to do with audiences as artists.

I Am A White Christian And Black Lives Matter

Rev. Peter Goodwin Heltzel, Ph.D. | Posted 07.16.2015 | Religion
Rev. Peter Goodwin Heltzel, Ph.D.

While some claim that Dylann Roof is mentally ill, the truly frightening possibility is that he is sane and sober -- that he was raised under a white supremacist culture and is acting out his racism in the most violent of ways.

Can Anything Good Come From Charleston? Ferguson? Nazareth?

Rev. Dr. Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder | Posted 07.14.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder

There is a theology of geography. There is a connection between space and fate. There is something unspoken that connects destiny with places, places with people. Towns and cities do not surface with notoriety. Situations or quite often the deeds of people precipitate such famous or infamous states.

Rethinking the Creeds - Do Christians Have to Believe All That Stuff?

Barbara Falconer Newhall | Posted 07.14.2015 | Religion
Barbara Falconer Newhall

So powerful was the Christian belief in belief, that in some eras, heresy - incorrect belief - could get you burned at the stake. But now, according to Harvard professor and theologian Harvey Cox, the age-old Christian belief in belief is becoming a thing of the past: the Age of Belief is over.

Jeremiah Wright's Words Hauntingly Relevant Today

Rev. Dr. Susan K. Smith | Posted 07.07.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Susan K. Smith

Although Obama distanced himself from Rev. Wright in order to help his chances of winning the election, the fact of the matter is that Wright's message of the pervasiveness of racism was spot on... and it still is.

The New Gay America

Arzu Kaya Uranli | Posted 07.06.2015 | Impact
Arzu Kaya Uranli

I haven't come across any statistics showing how Muslim Americans approach the topic of gay marriage, but my experience tells me that there are diverse opinions about it.

Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beholder - But What If There Is No Beholder?

Barbara Falconer Newhall | Posted 06.26.2015 | Religion
Barbara Falconer Newhall

Something big and white and cloudy was lurking in the steep canyon below our house. I stood up from my computer and peered out the window for a better look. It was flowering tree, growing wild.

White Gods and Black Devils: The Rhetoric of Bishop Henry McNeal Turner-Pt. 1

Andre E. Johnson | Posted 06.02.2015 | Religion
Andre E. Johnson

Henry McNeal Turner's writing focused on much during the post reconstruction period. One of the first major debates Turner found himself in was on African missions and emigration.

We've Been Thinking About God All Wrong

Paul Brandeis Raushenbush | Posted 05.29.2015 | Religion
Paul Brandeis Raushenbush

The religious news is a wake up call -- but not to a retrenchment of past practices; but a radical reassessment of the way we talk about God.

Accountability For Anti-Intellectualism: Three Changes That Will Help Christianity Reverse Its Decline

Crystal Lewis | Posted 05.21.2015 | Religion
Crystal Lewis

The unsavory truth is that a large number of people leave organized Christianity because they are unable to find an adequate bridge between faith and reason within church walls.

Religion, Catechism, and Parables

Catherine Nagle | Posted 05.11.2015 | Religion
Catherine Nagle

Catechism classes were part of the Catholic education I received. But regardless of how much we know about religion, isn't it the same truth that we all come to sooner or later?

An Interview with Brad Jersak, Author of A More Christlike God: A More Beautiful Gospel

Andrew P. Klager, Ph.D. | Posted 05.07.2015 | Religion
Andrew P. Klager, Ph.D.

I've known Brad Jersak for about ten years, and I've long been struck by his ability to deploy the tools of a scholar to distill the most profound ideas from a given theological topic or problem.

Actors of Love

Catherine Nagle | Posted 05.04.2015 | Religion
Catherine Nagle

A few years ago, I met Carlos Espinosa, the founder of Holy Wood Acting Studio in California, and commented on one of his video blogs. I was struck by his wisdom and passion for opening an acting studio in California that is faith-based.

Grace in the Media

Martin Marty | Posted 06.28.2015 | Religion
Martin Marty

Now and then we do stop to notice some of this "soft news," which surfaces in explicitly religious comment and, shall we call it, "theology," which is what it is.

Who Better to Teach the White Man Than the American Indian?

Cindy Brandt | Posted 06.27.2015 | Religion
Cindy Brandt

This is an interview with Dr. Randy Woodley, a Keetoowah Cherokee Indian descendent, serving as Distinguished Associate Professor of Faith and Culture and Director of Intercultural and Indigenous Studies at George Fox Seminary in Portland, Oregon.

Is Barth on the Mark?

Rev. Peter E. Bauer | Posted 06.16.2015 | Religion
Rev. Peter E. Bauer

Like everyone, Karl Barth is limited to his historical and cultural and political context, but like all great theologians, he has the capacity to speak to universal ideals, morals and beliefs.

Searching for Sunday and Finding Home: An Interview With Rachel Held Evans

Zach J. Hoag | Posted 06.14.2015 | Religion
Zach J. Hoag

Rachel Held Evans just released her latest book, Searching For Sunday, with Thomas Nelson. It's an excellent foray into the church's current cultural moment, seen through the lens of Rachel's own journey from evangelicalism.

Race and the Fabric of Faith: A Timely Letter From Universities and Seminaries

Jack Levison | Posted 05.31.2015 | Religion
Jack Levison

Last week, the Presidents and Deans of America's 13 United Methodist Seminaries -- representing over 5,000 seminarians, including over 1,000 African-Americans -- wrote a thoughtful open letter outlining a vision from which all of us, whatever our faith tradition, can learn.

Fifty Shades of God: Does Easter Week Affirm Our Violent Desires?

Christian Piatt | Posted 05.30.2015 | Religion
Christian Piatt

Have we made God into a monster? And as a result, have we taken the holiest of weeks in the Christian year and dressed it up as a celebration of bloody, violent sacrifice?

5 Things Blogging Taught Me About the Bible

Cindy Brandt | Posted 05.13.2015 | Religion
Cindy Brandt

Crafting my own words has helped me ponder the process in which the Biblical writings have come to be in the following five ways. I hope it provides an alternative viewpoint through which we can study and appreciate the Bible.

Made in the Image of God: Art, Feminist Theology and Caroline Mackenzie

Grace Ji-Sun Kim | Posted 05.06.2015 | Religion
Grace Ji-Sun Kim

My theological writings arise from my personal journey through faith and doubt, difficulties and joys. Many of our encounters with God inform our theology, make us who we are, and shape our living. I position my writings to reflect this part of my life that I try to live out as faithfully as I can.