• My summer entertainment reading is always mystery novels which I’ve loved since meeting the Hardy Boys in 4th grade. Recently I’ve appreciated stories set in a different time period than my own, especially the […]

  • I want to begin my response to the NBA situation with a salute to business owners and people with financial resources who use their assets to make the world safer, healthier, better educated, and more beautiful. […]

  • One of the things I like most about Memphis and Memphians is that I don’t find a lot of pretentiousness about us. There’s much to love here (beautiful springs, the Civil Rights Museum, our barbecue, Shelby Farms, […]

  • Our healthcare system is in transition. At present we have the ACA which mandates health insurance for everyone, which is good but also new. Meanwhile, we’ve kept the old vehicle for getting most people their […]

  • One downside to our capitalist, consumer culture is that we’ve reduced so many of life’s decisions down to dollars. So, jobs are about paychecks for rich and poor alike. As a youth minister, I knew rich kids who […]

  • The best perspective on growing old that I’ve encountered recently comes from spiritual teacher Joan Chittister who wrote: “Fortunately, no one is ever stuck in one stage of life—cemented in that ignorance, […]

  • If you were addressing the nation on Wednesday, Nov. 7, the DAY AFTER the election, what would you say? What advice would you offer to your fellow Americans about the next four years? As a political science major in undergraduate studies, I took a class on “The Press and Politics” during winter quarter in 1980 in [...]

  • What is your favorite verse of holy scripture and why? “Love never comes undone…” 1 Corinthians 13:8. You have to smile at this feminist professor having a favorite verse from Paul’s writings. And it is a favorite verse rather than the favorite. I have several “favorites,” but this one comes to my mind today. This “version” of the [...]

  • Memphis is the second most generous city in the country, according to a new survey by The Chronicle of Philanthropy. According to the publication: “Religion plays a major role in how much money Americans give to charity. The parts of the country that tend to be more religious are also more generous.” Why is this true? [...]

  • What should Memphis City Council do? Are sexual orientation and gender identity an employment issue, a civil rights issue or a faith issue? Democracy. Freedom. Welcome (think of the inscription on the Statue of Liberty). Liberty and justice for all. Beautiful words that make the American story so glorious to most of us. Our challenge has [...]

  • The ethics of anonymous online commenting: I’m not fond of anonymity in our society . Since the Bill of Rights protects our right to express ourselves freely, I believe that anonymity is not necessary (in normal circumstances). Whenever folks are expressing opinions, making claims or charges, or venting their joy or anger in writing, they can and…[Read more]

  • Noted scientist and best-selling novelist Alan Lightman, a Memphis native, asks what are the boundaries between science and religion, the two greatest forces that have shaped human civilization. What are the different kinds of knowledge in science and in religion? And how do we come by those different kinds of knowledge? Members of the Faith in [...]

  • According to the 2010 Census, of the 168,000 children living in Memphis, nearly 67,000 — about 4 in 10 — are living in a family with a female householder and NO FATHER PRESENT. Later this month, Memphis Mayor A C Wharton will host the Second Annual Memphis Training Camp for Dads. (Wharton is writing a [...]

  • Members of religious organizations should proclaim and defend their understanding of marriage. They can and should determine who can be married in their midst, what the marriage means for the marriage partners and the community of which they are members, and how they believe such marriages honor God. But members of religious organizations do not [...]

  • In a world in which most religions begin with God the Father or some sort of male image of the divine, and are founded by male figures such as Moses, Buddha, Jesus and Muhammad, do we undervalue Motherhood or the role of women in faith? “Do we undervalue the role of women in faith?” Here is, [...]

  • Earle Fisher will note in a guest column this Saturday, “One of the most prevalent and plausible critiques of the faith community is that when it comes to matters of sexual abuse and domestic violence, the church practices ‘sacred silence.’ ” Do you agree? What can we do to provide a safe place for dialogue regarding [...]

  • In a recent interview, Rev. Franklin Graham questioned the Christian credentials of President Barack Obama and GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney. He apologized Tuesday for questioning President Obama’s faith. Meanwhile, on Tuesday, members of the NAACP’s religious roundtable called on Graham and all Christian leaders to “refrain from using…[Read more]

  • Should grieving be considered a psychiatric disorder? How do you define grief? How do you counsel or minister to those who are grieving? Can/should grief be medicated? Theologian Dorothee Soelle once observed that many of us in the Western part of the world now define utopia as “feeling no pain.” There seems to be a sense [...]

  • President Obama will deliver the State of the Union Address one week on Jan. 24. If you could address the nation next week, how would you describe the Spiritual State of the Union? I don’t know that I’m in any position to assess the spiritual state of the union, but I confess to having concerns about [...]

  • Sunday marks the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. How has America changed since then? How did 9/11 change faith in America? What impact did 9/11 have on the soul of America? Post 9/11 Americans are sadder, less innocent, more fearful than we used to be—a statement so obvious we hardly need say it. We haven’t [...]

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