News & Ideas - 5/1/2018

  • Why does Congress have chaplains?
  • James H. Cone remembered
  • North Korea's secret Christians
  • "God and the IRS" reviewed
  • Jerusalem's Christians under threat
  • The summer of '78

How does Congress have chaplains without violating the separation of church and state?
The Conversation: The present controversy over the resignation of Father Patrick Conroy, a Jesuit priest and longtime House chaplain, offers a unique opportunity to ask broader questions about why the U.S. Congress employs chaplains and what they do.

Theologians and white supremacy: An interview with James H. Cone
America: In this 2006 interview, James H. Cone, who died Saturday, urged white theologians to speak out forcefully against racism, saying, “I speak out against white supremacy not because I have lost hope, but rather because I too have found it.”
Religion Dispatches: James H. Cone: In memorium
America: “Writing is the way I fight”: Remembering James H. Cone

North Korea's secret Christians
The Atlantic: South Koreans are proselytizing in the adamantly atheist country using thousands of illicit radios smuggled over the border.

'God and the IRS' stakes out controversial positions on religion and taxes
Forbes: A new book argues that accommodations to religious individuals have been implemented in a random, haphazard manner without any sort of overarching system.

Christians in Jerusalem's Old City 'under threat' from settlers
The Guardian: Church leaders claim priests are being verbally abused and spat at while property is being vandalized in the ancient walled city.

The Spark

Scenes unseen: The summer of ’78
Six months ago, a city official cleaning out an office found a box with nearly 3,000 color slides -- pictures made in parks across New York City’s five boroughs late in the summer of 1978. They were taken by eight New York Times photographers out on strike; no one had looked at them for 40 years. They show the decrepit state of the city's parks, as well as people sunning, laughing, splashing and eating popscicles during that long-ago summer.

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