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At a glance, here’s what you need to navigate the world of faith this week …
Americans, passing through July 4 means that we’re in the second half
of summer now. Millions plan to travel, despite sky-rocketing gas
prices — many of us on faith-related journeys. Tell us about a spiritual journey you’re taking.
pack their faith along with their luggage each summer — traveling on
mission trips, pilgrimages or simply including spiritual reflections
along their way. Some stay close to home and organize summer programs
This week, there’s a second major examination of slavery — this time a
report on modern slavery on ABC Nightline Tuesday night. On Tuesday
morning, we’ll publish a review of the TV program — and, on Wednesday,
our Conversation with David Batstone is a chance to meet one of the
most innovative of the modern abolitionsts.
along with Dr. Wayne Baker of the University of Michigan’s prestigious
Institute for Social Research. It’s true — you can make a difference
by helping Dr. Baker with his research.
We know that many of our readers will have questions about this Times
article. So, today’s ReadTheSpirit story provides context — and links
to everything else you’ll want to know related to this intriguing stone
familiar with serious research into American religious life knows that
if Steven M. Cohen’s name is on the cover of a report — it’s probably
a report on Jewish life and it’s certainly worth reading, whether
you’re Jewish or not.
again with a study of single, Jewish adults aged 25 to 39, a segment of
the population that he and his research colleagues regard as “swing
voters” who will determine the future of the Jewish community in
report just became available this past week in PDF format. And, as
usual, Cohen reaches out to draw parallels to the larger religious
the headline from this report: Contrary to myths about young adults not
caring about religious affiliation — these Jewish adults
overwhelmingly identify themselves with Judaism. The problem is:
American religious life (Jewish and Christian as well) is geared toward
the dwindling portion of nuclear families in our population. This is
not a world that feels comfortable to single younger adults.
properly understood, Cohen’s report is a pointed challenge to mainline
Jewish and non-Jewish religious leaders who continue to structure their
communities around Mom, Pop and the kids.
— for pointing out to me that there are, indeed, a small but growing
number of Quaker Pagans in the U.S. Stay tuned to Wayne’s Web site this
week, where you’ll read more about them in an upcoming story.
an advance peek at this group, here is an example of the kind of
interesting online writing you’ll find from this little spiritual
movement. Check out: http://quakerpagan.blogspot.com/
Hot Read: Foreign Policy
2008 Foreign Policy magazine: the one with “Asia’s New Miracle” on the
front cover. Here’s why we’re calling it this week’s “Hot Read” — John
Hoberman’s “Think Again: The Olympics.” I won’t steal Hoberman’s
thunder by listing his seven myths about the Olympics, but I will share
one example: “The Olympics Promote Human Rights.” Quite the contrary,
Hoberman reports: “Olympic diplomacy has always been rooted in a
doublespeak that exploits the world’s sentimental attachment to the
spirit of the games.”
“Think Again” piece slams the Olympics a little too harshly, I think,
but it is a sobering dose of historical balance in the gung-ho American
anticipation of the games.
reason to buy this issue of FP: It includes the 2008 Foreign Policy
Failed States Index, an annual “must read” for people who care about
the health of our world.)
checked out online broadcasting? Vibrant new formats are blossoming
everywhere — and we are especially interested in reports on
tough-to-cover subjects related to spirituality and culture.
week’s Planner, we highlighted a Wall Street Journal report by Andy
Jordan on efforts to save traditional Chinese neighborhoods.
week, mark your calendars for 5 PM (Eastern Time in the U.S.) on July
18 for a special report on religious persecution in China related to
the looming Olympic games. The reporter is Gary Baumgarten, who had a
long career with CBS and CNN, but now reports online. Check out his
Blog: The Gary Baumgarten Report.
On the 18th, you can click on the link from his site to hear this
report concerning China. Or, check out his work anytime before that.
We’re going to be exploring …
about a 2,000-year-old stone inscription that could be related to
Jesus’ life and death. In putting that story into a broader context,
we’ve also got cool links to “read more” about the significance of this
We’ll introduce you to Dr. David Batstone, currently one of the world’s
leading abolitionists. Batstone is a scholar from California who once
ran Sojourners Magazine but found his life transformed by researching the book, “Not for Sale.”
Now, he’s trying to build a grassroots movement around the world using
innovative new-media strategies. You’ll find inspiring news and some
intriguing ideas in this story.
- 204: Here are Two — a Film and a Book — for some Great Summertime Reflections
- 203: In a world of depressing news — why are we so “up-beat” all the time?
- 202: Conversation With Dr. Wayne Baker, the Researcher Behind OurValues.org
- 201: Tuesday Quiz: So, how do “OurValues” stack up with others?
- 200: Here’s NEWS on a New Web Page Where Your Values Make a Difference
- 199: How Much Room Is There for Love? Answers from Wall.E and an Outsider
- 198: Writer Judy Gruen Pokes Fun at Pop Culture that Dismisses Real Life
- 197: Conversation With Comic Book Iconographer Chris Yambar
- 196: Good News! Pew Researchers Find Faith Strong– AND Flexibly Diverse
- 195: Readers Help Us Find Inspiring Values in a Summer of Global Change