Cover Story: ‘Enchanting stories’ welcome us into the adventure of Howard Brown’s new ‘Shining Brightly’

‘Learn anew about the American Dream’

Please, welcome and support the debut of this inspiring memoir

THE TWO QUOTATIONS IN OUR HEADLINES, this week—”enchanting stories” and “learn anew about the American Dream”—come from the Foreword to Shining Brightly, a new memoir by Howard Brown that celebrates the resilient power of hope, friendship and family. The book’s Foreword was written by best-selling author and psychologist Dr. Robert J. Wicks, an internationally sought-after expert on building resilience as we try to cope with life’s traumas.

Right now, we already are promoting this book that will be released officially at Rosh Hashanah this year in late September. That’s perfect timing because this is an uplifting vision of new hope that is perfect for a new year. So, this week, we are encouraging all of our readers to visit Amazon and order your copy either in paperback or hardcover. If you pre-order now, your book should be on your doorstep on September 27.

In the weeks leading up to that launch, we also are going to take readers inside our publishing house for glimpses of the many ways we share such good news with the world. So, over in our Front Edge Publishing website this week, we are sharing a sample email we encourage authors to send to their readers to build excitement about a new book.

This is a perfect moment to become one of Howard’s growing global circle of friends by ordering your copy of his book.

.

.

Bill Tammeus on …

Timely News from Rabbi James Rudin

FOR MANY DECADES, journalists who specialize in covering religious diversity have known Rabbi James Rudin as a wise and helpful interpreter of global news events. In this review of Rabbi Rudin’s new book, The People in the Room, author and journalist Bill Tammeus writes about the urgency of Rudin’s concern about the current rise in hatred. “How Christian-Jewish relations play out on Main Street America is now more decisive and important than ever,” Rudin writes. At age 87, Rabbi Rudin still is an important voice guiding community leaders and peacemakers.

And another tip for the peacemakers in our community of readers: This is a timely moment to order your own copy of Bill Tammeus’s own memoir—and his approach to “unplugging extremism.” It’s available from Amazon, titled: Love, Loss and Endurance: A 9/11 Story of Resilience and Hope in an Age of AnxietyThis week, we just learned that Bill’s memoir was nominated for the prestigious Thorpe Menn Literary Excellence Award. We won’t know if Bill won the prize until October 1, but the nomination is a significant honor.
.

.

Holidays & Festivals

Paryushan

HOLIDAYS COLUMNIST STEPHANIE FENTON, this week, brings us the story of Paryushan, the most important festival in the Jain religious calendar.

Labor Day

STEPHANIE FENTON also writes, this week, about some of the religious history connected with this major American holiday.

.

WANT TO SEE ALL OF THE UPCOMING HOLIDAYS & FESTIVALS?—It’s easy to find our annual calendar of global observances. Just remember the web address: InterfaithHolidays.com

..

.

 

CLICK ON THIS LOGO to read Ed McNulty’s special column highlighting two of Leonard Cohen’s most memorable spiritually themed songs. One of Ed’s recommendations is especially timely as we approach the Jewish High Holy Days in late September.

.

Faith & Film

Click on this movie still to read Ed McNulty’s review of the delightful new South Korean series Extraordinary Attorney Woo.

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.

 

 

 

 

 

Cover Story: Reflecting on our lives as Elul prepares us for New Year 5783

Illustration generated by AI via DALL-E 2

Elul reveals not what we want but what we need: spiritual grounding.

RABBI LENORE BOHM wrote our Cover Story this week, reflecting on an annual milestone that most of our readers overlook—Elul, the final month of the Jewish year. Rabbi Bohm’s thoughtful column reaches out across religious boundaries. All of us can learn lessons from Elul, which “is about widening our horizons and releasing our dis-eases and our mis-takes.” As summer draws toward its close and a busy autumn looms on the horizon, please enjoy this column and share it with friends via social media or email.

.

.

Dr. David Gushee—

Four opportunities to join Dr. Gushee online

THIS WEEK, Dr. David Gushee is inviting all of our readers to join him at upcoming events. The author of the best-selling call for the inclusion of LGBTQ Christians, Changing Our Mind, writes: “The following are events where you might enjoy finding a new network of people, organizations you want to support, and insights and information that will bring light to your life.”

.

.

Suzy Farbman—

A love born in sharing spiritual adventures

IN HER GOD SIGNS COLUMN, this week, Suzy Farbman introduces us to Ross Quigley, a former monk, and the love of his life, Suzanne Duca, whose relationship now includes bringing the best of Americana music to intimate crowds.

.

.

Click on this movie still to read Ed McNulty’s review of the documentary, Hallelujah—Leonard Cohen, a Journey, a Song.

.

Click this image to learn more about the August 2022 issue of Visual Parables Journal, offering complete discussion guides to films that include Everything Everywhere All at Once, Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris, Resurrection and Vengeance.

Faith & Film

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s circle the globe, asking: How can our world move from ‘I’ to ‘We’?

From Ukraine and Scotland to India and Detroit, Michigan—

Enjoy this multimedia reminder of our global connections!

Sharon Buttry and Ukraine—’The Myriad Roles of Women’

SHARON and her husband DAN BUTTRY are longtime friends of our publishing house. Check out Dan Buttry’s Amazon Author Page to learn more about their shared efforts on global peacemaking. This week, Sharon has completed an inspiring painting and online column about solidarity with the women of Ukraine. Please visit the Buttrys’ Global Peace Warrior website to see Sharon’s remarkable work.

.

Rodney Curtis and Scotland—a union and a reunion

RODNEY CURTIS is one of our most popular authors, columnists and photographers over the past decade. Check out Rodney’s Amazon Author Page to learn more about his books. This week, he’s telling us—and showing us—about highlights of his family’s recent sojourn in Scotland for a union of families in a Scottish castle. Please enjoy this column—and gorgeous photos—at Rodney’s website.

.

MSU Bias Busters and India—Let’s help stop anti-Sikh treatment in the U.S.

THIS WEEK, Michigan State University School of Journalism Bias Busters founder Joe Grimm writes about the timely need for all of us to help stop anti-Sikh bigotry that is cropping up in the U.S. this summer. This award-winning Bias Busters team of journalism students just recently published their 19th guidebook, 100 Questions and Answers about Sikh Americans. Please, read Joe Grimm’s column about recent troubling cases involving the treatment of Sikhs in the U.S.

.

.

MSU Bias Busters and Detroit—How can our world move from ‘I’ to ‘We’?

YOU’LL DEFINITELY ENJOY this short video from Michigan State University School of Journalism’s Joe Grimm that shows the Rev. Robert Jones demonstrating the roots of the famous protest song We Shall Overcome. Jones leaves us with the question: How can our world move from “I” to “We”? This is a video you’ll want to share with friends this week.

.

.

Suzy Farbman and Detroit—The Arts of the Cass Corridor

THE JEWISH NEWS has just published a profile of our columnist and author Suzy Farbman, focusing on her new book Detroit’s Cass Corridor and Beyond. “This is the story of the art world I knew,” Suzy tells journalist Suzanne Chessler. And, please, we also invite you to check out Suzy’s newest book on Amazon.

.

.

Holidays & Festivals

Krishna Janmashtami

AND ON AUGUST 18Across India and in Hindu communities worldwide, celebrations of Lord Krishna are planned—including, in some cities, those amazing human pyramids that are unique to this holiday.

.

Book Birthdays

PUBLISHERS and AUTHORS CELEBRATE “BOOK BIRTHDAYS,” the anniversaries of our books’ debuts. Among our August book birthdays are several that continue to be popular with readers.

.

WANT TO SEE ALL OF THE UPCOMING HOLIDAYS & FESTIVALS?—It’s easy to find our annual calendar of global observances. Just remember the web address: InterfaithHolidays.com

..

.

.

august visual parables

Click this image to learn more about the August 2022 issue of Visual Parables Journal, offering complete discussion guides to films that include Everything Everywhere All at Once, Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris, Resurrection and Vengeance.

Faith & Film

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.

 

 

 

 

Cover Story: What are the Big Five publishers? And why does it matter if they become the Big Four?

What’s behind the Penguin Random House purchase of Simon & Schuster?

As Book Sales Rise, Could Authors’ Access Shrink?

COVER STORY—When we founded our publishing house in 2007, we were determined to rank among the hundreds of mid-sized “independent publishers” in the U.S.—because our staff and our authors wanted the freedom to publish books that might never climb over the hurdles set up by the Big Five publishers. Now, in 2022, a landmark court case will determine whether the Big Five can increase their power by becoming the Big Four. In our Cover Story, Editor David Crumm outlines the essential issues at stake and provides links to further reading about this milestone in book publishing. Please, read this story and share it with friends via social media and email.

.

.

From our writers—

Martin Davis

Remembering Vin Scully

MARTIN DAVIS, author of 30 Days with America’s High School Coaches, is an expert journalist at covering all aspects of sports. He also writes for the Editorial page of The Free-Lance Star in Virginia. Last week, he published a moving remembrance of the veteran sportscaster Vin Scully. As Martin puts it, Scully “plumbed the human experience and nurtured our hearts, imaginations, and emotions from places most people who listened would never visit.

.

.

Victor Begg

Faiths vary on start of life

THANKS TO OUR LONG-TIME COLUMNIST—and the author of Our Muslim Neighbors—Victor Begg, the IslamiCity online magazine has published his overview of basic concepts of “the start of life” from a number of religious traditions. The current political upheavals in the U.S. about abortion are largely based on various Christian assumptions. Victor provides a broader perspective. Please, read his column and share it with friends.

.

.

.

Holidays & Festivals

Raksha Bandhan

AND ON AUGUST 11Across India and in Hindu communities worldwide, the sacred bonds between brothers and sisters are honored on Raksha Bandhan.

.

Book Birthdays

PUBLISHERS and AUTHORS CELEBRATE “BOOK BIRTHDAYS,” the anniversaries of our books’ debuts. Among our August book birthdays are several that continue to be popular with readers—and this is a great opportunity for us to remind everyone of these valuable volumes:

With the MSU School of Journalism Bias Busters’ team, in August 2018, we published 100 Questions and Answers About Police Officers. This guide has sections on training and  certification, special assignments, police culture, use of force, community policing, police jargon and police funeral etiquette. All the guides in this series are designed to help improve relationships across communities.

Earlier, in 2016, with the Bias Busters and their professor Joe Grimm, we published To My Professor. Teaching college is difficult and this book has some potential solutions. More than 50 chapters cover situations including expectations, communication, technology, race, gender and religion, mental and physical health. This is a perfect gift for the young person in your life who is heading off to college this fall.

Then, in August 2017, we published a book that has helped readers around the world learn more about American History Made Easy. This overview of American history was developed by veteran English as a Second Language instructor Kathleen Gripman to help men and women attain this crucial educational milestone. What began as a book primarily for ESL students also has become a popular choice for anyone who quickly wants to learn about the broad sweep of American history.

.

WANT TO SEE ALL OF THE UPCOMING HOLIDAYS & FESTIVALS?—It’s easy to find our annual calendar of global observances. Just remember the web address: InterfaithHolidays.com

..

.

.

 

Click on this photo to read Ed McNulty’s review of the new Showtime series, The First Lady.

Faith & Film

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.

 

 

 

 

Cover Story: Celebrating the 20th guide by MSU School of Journalism’s Bias Busters: ‘100 Questions and Answers about The Black Church’

.

‘To understand America, you need to understand the Black Church’

Please Help Spread this Good News Now

IN THIS WEEK’S COVER STORY, we are celebrating the upcoming publication of the 2oth guide by the Michigan State University School of Journalism’s Bias Busters team: 100 Questions and Answers about The Black Church.

TIME magazine put it simply: “To understand America, you need to understand the Black Church.” This new book will be officially released in just a few weeks—but is listed for pre-sale on Amazon right now. We are asking our readers to support this effort—and spread this good news—by reading our cover story, pre-ordering a copy now, and sharing this news with friends via social media and email. C’mon! It’s an easy way to help make our troubled world a little more hospitable place for all of us.

.

.

And on Native American Peoples—

Vatican photo provided for media use.

Pope Francis’s Pilgrimage

OVER THE PAST WEEK, Pope Francis circled the world to continue a process of Truth and Reconciliation for the centuries of trauma inflicted on Native Peoples by church-sponsored “schools” that were designed to destroy Native culture. We have been covering this historic milestone in our weekly magazine, offering periodic updates to our readers. Among this week’s links you may want to visit are:

The Vatican has provided both photos of the event and a complete text of Francis’s remarks in English.

The New York Times initially published front-page coverage by Jason Horowitz and Ian Austen. Then, on July 30, Horowitz published a follow-up report as well.

Religion News Service also covered these events.

To learn more, please order a copy of the guidebook in the MSU Bias Busters series: 100 Questions, 500 Nations from Amazon.

.

.

Dr. David Gushee

Two Opportunities to Hear from Dr. Gushee—

There are two new opportunities to hear from best-selling Christian ethicist Dr. David Gushee this week.

First, the progressive Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF) Conversations podcast talks with Dr. Gushee.

Then, the Future Christian podcast talks with Dr. Gushee about why Christian ethics matter in today’s world.

.

..

Holidays & Festivals

 

Tisha B’Av

A day to remember, mourn and ‘restart the journey.’

PLEASE DON’T MISS RABBI LENORE BOHM’S thoughtful reflection on what is sometimes described as the saddest day of the Jewish year. Tisha B’Av is far more than that, the rabbi tells us. In fact, it can be a helpful occasion on which to restart the journey home. Please, share Rabbi Bohm’s thoughtful column with friends via social media.

.

Lammas, Lughnasadh

ON AUGUST 1, each year, many families with cultural roots in the UK mark this beginning-of-the-harvest festival.

.

Feast of the Transfiguration

AUGUST 6An event revered by St. Thomas Aquinas as “the greatest miracle” is recalled by both Eastern and Western Christians today, on the centuries-old Feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord.

.

Raksha Bandhan

AND ON AUGUST 11Across India and in Hindu communities worldwide, the sacred bonds between brothers and sisters are honored on Raksha Bandhan.

.

WANT TO SEE ALL OF THE UPCOMING HOLIDAYS & FESTIVALS?—It’s easy to find our annual calendar of global observances. Just remember the web address: InterfaithHolidays.com

..

.

.

 

Click this movie image to read Ed McNulty’s review of Gabby Giffords Won’t Back Down.

Faith & Film

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.

 

 

 

 

Cover Story: The dangerous roots of our American obsession with who’s “in” and who’s “out” of our herd

.

What happens when our polarization becomes ‘an existential threat’?

Searching our religious heritage for solutions

WE ARE PROUD TO WELCOME BACK Virginia-based columnist Henry Brinton, who always brings us a fresh perspective on challenges we all face in embracing America’s growing diversity. Henry has been teaching and writing about this theme for many years—from his books, public appearances and ongoing columns. This week, you’ll likely be startled by a chapter of American history you’ve never heard about before Henry’s reporting. Please, read this column and share it with friends via social media and email.

.

.

From our writers

Pedro Brieger:

The Pope and Latin America

OUR FRIENDS TRULY FORM A GLOBAL NETWORK! ReadTheSpirit magazine is an active part of the International Association of Religion Journalists. This week, we assisted with the bilingual publication of award-winning Argentinian journalist Pedro Brieger’s news-analysis, El Papa Francisco y America LatinaHis column appears on the IARJ website in both Spanish and English.

.

.

Bill Tammeus:

Imagine if all our houses of worship—vanished?!

THIS WEEK, veteran journalist Bill Tammeus offers readers a 3-for-the-price-of-1 news roundup that you won’t want to miss. First, he poses a provocative idea: “Suppose all the faith communities just—disappeared.” Then, he offers a fascinating news item about “Monsters in the Bible.” And, wait! There’s more! He even offers a third item about reflections on the astonishing images from the new Webb telescope. Don’t miss this column! (and consider sharing this with friends)

.

.

Carol Trembath:

Remember to Review?

WERE YOU AMONG OUR READERS, last week, who read our Cover Story about the remarkable new Native American story by Carol Trembath? Carol’s book, Pass the Feather, continues her inspiring series of books about the real-life group of Native American women who have walked more than 20,000 miles around the Great Lakes, praying for our waters as they walk. If you were among those who decided to order a copy—please remember to be supportive of Carol’s work by visiting Amazon and adding a review!

.

.

Dmitri Barvinok:

What’s new in the 56th edition of the AP Stylebook? 

IMPORTANT NEWS FOR ALL THE WRITERS AMONG USAs Dmitri Barvinok explains in our Front Edge Publishing column this week, “The Associated Press Stylebook is the trusted companion of writers and editors around the world.” It’s the guide we use in editing this online magazine—and in editing the books we publish through Front Edge. This new guide includes “300 new and revised entries”—so Dmitri highlights a few of the most important for our community of writers and includes links to learn more about this new Stylebook. If you know other writers, please share this column with them via social media or email.
.

.

Holidays & Festivals

.

Lammas, Lughnasadh

Yes, autumn is coming …

ON AUGUST 1, each year, many families with cultural roots in the UK mark this beginning-of-the-harvest festival.

Feast of the Transfiguration

AUGUST 6An event revered by St. Thomas Aquinas as “the greatest miracle” is recalled by both Eastern and Western Christians today, on the centuries-old Feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord.

Raksha Bandhan

AND ON AUGUST 11Across India and in Hindu communities worldwide, the sacred bonds between brothers and sisters are honored on Raksha Bandhan.

.

WANT TO SEE ALL OF THE UPCOMING HOLIDAYS & FESTIVALS?—It’s easy to find our annual calendar of global observances. Just remember the web address: InterfaithHolidays.com

..

.

.

Click this photo to read Ed McNulty’s review of the film Brian and Charles.

 

Click this image to learn more about the July 2022 issue of Visual Parables Journal, which includes complete discussion guides to Elvis, Lightyear, 1776, The First Lady and many more films.

Faith & Film

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.

 

 

 

Carol Trembath debuts her latest Native American book ‘Pass the Feather’

‘It’s for the water.’

‘Pass the Feather’ continues the Native American walk around the Great Lakes

IN THIS WEEK’S COVER STORY, author and educator Carol Trembath returns to our online magazine with the remarkable story of Pass the Feather. This is the latest book in her series about the real-life Native American Water Walkers, focusing this time on a journey around Lake Erie. In this incredible, years-long project Native American women have walked 20,000 miles around the Great Lakes and waterways, prayerfully lifting up awareness of the water that is essential for all life on our planet. Please, read Carol’s story and help out with this timely effort. Share her story with friends and invite them to help, as well.

.

.

From our authors

Suzy Farbman

GodSigns galore when artists connect

IN SUZY’S MEMOIR AND HER COLUMNS, she often describes startling connections as “GodSigns,” especially when they lead to inspiration and new friendships. In this week’s columns, generations of artists wind up experiencing such moments as they connect—and now plan to brighten up a Detroit high school.

.

.

Joe Grimm and the MSU Bias Busters:

Help spread the good news

WERE YOU AMONG THE READERS, last week, who read our Cover Story about the launch of 100 Questions and Answers about Sikh Americans? Were you among the readers who immediately ordered a copy of the paperback or the Kindle edition? Well, here’s a friendly reminder from Joe Grimm and the remarkable MSU Bias Busters team of students: If you ordered a book, please return to the book’s Amazon page and add a review. Positive reviews are very helpful in spreading awareness of important new books like this one.

.

.

Bill Tammeus:

An Orthodox dome rises in wake of 9/11

IN A NEW COLUMN THIS WEEK, veteran journalist Bill Tammeus writes about a development near to his heart: “The most important victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001 were, of course, people. Nearly 3,000 of them died that day, including my own nephew, a passenger on the first plane to smash into the World Trade Center. I tell that family story and I explore the roots of extremism (and what to do about it) in my last book, Love, Loss and Endurance. But as well know, there were non-human victims of the terrorists, too—and not just the tall twin towers. In fact, one of the structures severely damaged that day was a Greek Orthodox Church, St. Nicholas.” Please, read and share Bill’s column this week. It’s a sign of hope in our troubled world.

.

.

Holidays & Festivals

Birthday of Haile Selassie

As we honor Native peoples around the world …

ETHIOPIAN leader Halie Selassie’s courage—in the face of deadly European aggression—is remembered each year on Selassie’s July 23 birthday. Stephanie Fenton shares the story with us.

.

.

Lammas, Lughnasadh

Yes, autumn is coming …

ON AUGUST 1, each year, many families with cultural roots in the UK mark this beginning-of-the-harvest festival.

.

WANT TO SEE ALL OF THE UPCOMING HOLIDAYS & FESTIVALS?—It’s easy to find our annual calendar of global observances. Just remember the web address: InterfaithHolidays.com

..

.

.

 

Click this image to learn more about the July 2022 issue of Visual Parables Journal, which includes complete discussion guides to Elvis, Lightyear, 1776, The First Lady and many more films.

Faith & Film

ED McNULTY, for decades, has published reviews, magazine articles and books exploring connections between faith and film. Most of his work is freely published. Ed supports his work by selling the Visual Parables Journal, a monthly magazine packed with discussion guides to films. This resource is used coast-to-coast by individuals who love the movies and by educators, clergy and small-group leaders.

Here are some of Ed’s most recent free reviews and columns:

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

.