ALL RELIGIONS PROMOTE IDEALS
EVOLVING DEBATE WITHIN ISLAM—As the fasting month begins for 1.8 billion Muslims around the world, an ongoing debate over the role of “Sharia” (or “Sharia Law”) continues to surface in headlines involving Muslim communities. Thanks to a leading organization of religion scholars, three top journalists were able to prepare one of the most interesting and balanced reports on the subject we’ve seen in recent years. The story is headlined simply What Sharia means and how it is understood around the world. The article is hosted on the website of the International Association of Religion Journalists (IARJ). Please, read this thoughtful overview and share it with friends. The subject of Sharia is frequently misunderstood and often is used in an inaccurate way to spark anti-Muslim bigotry. And, thanks to our friends at IARJ for publishing this story at the start of Ramadan!
This week, you may also want to read:
- OVERVIEW of RAMADAN: Our coverage by Holidays expert Stephanie Fenton.
- HELPFUL BOOK: Learn about The Beauty of Ramadan, a detailed overview of Muslim customs in this special month.
- QUESTIONS & ANSWERS: Also, please consider this Michigan State University book that many readers find very helpful in understanding Muslim customs and culture.
PAYING TRIBUTE—As this week begins, Americans are enjoying a three-day holiday weekend and in many communities, families also are paying tribute to fallen soldiers. Columnist Stephanie Fenton has the Memorial Day story.
Want more on holidays? Remember the simple address: www.InterfaithHolidays.org.
GOD SIGNS—Did you know that more than 5 million men and women are graduating from high school or college this year in North America? All the way from Prince Edward Island, Suzy Farbman brings us this fun story of a boy who dreamed of his senior prom with a particular image of his grand entrance in mind. And, this very enterprising young man made it happen, too!
FILM & FAITH:
ED McNULTY’s easy-to-remember online address is at VisualParables.org.
Among Ed’s latest free movie reviews are:
- DISTURBING THE PEACE—You may have to search for this film, but it’s a remarkable, inspiring look at a group of Israelis and Palestinians who are working toward peace in a new way. Ed gives the film 5 out of 5 stars. (And, if you’re interested in thought-provoking films about this part of the world, Ed also suggests we reach back to see Al Helm: Martin Luther King in Palestine.)
- GOING IN STYLE—There are some fun moments here and some endearing performances, but the overall movie about three aging, would-be thieves is only so-s0, Ed concludes.
- THEIR FINEST—You might have to search a bit for this delightful film set during the Blitz in World War II Britain. But it’s well worth it, writes Ed. (5 out of 5 stars)
- THE CIRCLE—Tom Hanks stars as a Steve Jobs kind of character in an “intellectual thriller” that Ed praises with 4.5 stars.
- GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, 2—Ed gives this sequel 4 stars.
- ITALIAN FOR BEGINNERS—This week, Ed also urges us to reach back for this wonderful 2000 film.
- BORN IN CHINA—It’s appropriate that Disney engaged Chinese director Lu Chuan to helm this beautiful nature film, most of which was shot in the China highlands. (4 stars)
- WHITE HELMETS—”We are indebted to Netflix for making documentarian Orlando von Einsiedel’s short film so widely available,” Ed writes. (5 stars)