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God Talk Miscellany XVII

Here’s some of the God-talk I ran across in my infobaun meanderings this week:

The End (How Postmodern Protagonists Live: Not Happily Ever After. Or Even at All) is a great Washington Post article about the latest hope-less trend in horror films (and books) to kill off all the characters. In the interest of full disclosure, I don’t watch these kinds of films these days. I had a hard enough time in the early 1980s watching horror films where people actually survived, like the now-considered-classics Halloween, Friday the 13th and The Shinning. Anyway, Hank Stuever writes with a humorous edge (which helps in dealing with the subject matter) and leaves us ruminating about evil and its portrayal in films. What do we do with it? How much evil is too much evil? What about hope and the value of life? (Warning: the article spoils the endings of several films and books and also contains descriptions of scenes within them.) As I was reading, I couldn’t help but think of the 2004 BBC interview I heard with Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams about evil in the shadow of the Beslan school massacre. (This link contains link to the audio; sorry, I couldn’t find a transcript). While listening to the interview, I remember being struck by Williams' observation that the children were not abandoned by God – that God was very present at the time in concrete ways. That is, at least in my humble opinion, a key issue when ruminating over the portrayal of evil and hope in film as well.

This past week, among its prolific posts, GetReligion ponders whether or not some college-bound Christian high school students are being penalized by California’s UC system for being too well-read. They also take a look at the coverage of the annual Pew Forum’s data release about religion and public life with “another round of 'Name That Newspaper'.” And they also explore the Scientology ghosts in the Tom Cruise-Paramount split.

At Jesus Creed, Scot McNight takes a look at the book Dear Church: Letters from a Disillusioned Generation. One of his favorite parts: “… stages of disillusionment with the church are most valuable when they inspire us to get off our religiously-bogged-down booties and actually do something to help better represent God’s purposes to our world”. McNight also ruminates on the rise of what he calls neo-fundamentalism.

BeliefNet reports on a survey that ranks the most and least “prayerful” colleges and the most and least religious colleges among other things.

The Biblical Recorder has a great article on the emerging movement. Author Chad Hall looks at both the strengths and weakness of the movement as well as misconceptions about it. It might be a little basic for some of you, but I liked it.

The NY Times explores how Clergywomen Find Hard Path to Bigger Pulpit.

Wayne Jacobsen posts this oh-my-goodness-so funny twist of the classic bridging the gap to God image created by a pastor “with too much time on his hands.” (Heh, my husband says my sense of humor is going geek. You decide.)

Claw of Conciliator points to a Charlie Rose interview with evangelicals Rick Warren and Greg Boyd. Haven’t watched it yet, but planning on it

Rev Abi has an interesting post on cell phone theology.

And Kari is thinking about 30 days of nothing. I might too.

And now it’s time for me to go to bed. Blessings.

(Image: by Mike D on


Kari Z. Murphy said…
Hi Carmen,
You've been spotlighted at the Christian Women Online blog!

In Christ alone,