Archive for the ‘theology’ Category

Old Men in Skirts & Women’s Health

February 20, 2012

Old Men in Skirts & Women's Health

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is objecting to a recent HHS rulemaking which grants American women equal access to healthcare and directs health insurance companies to provide them with contraceptive services. Of course, America’s Roman Catholic bishops have their own sort of family planning; they are (presumably) celibate. Not so the females in their flock, two-thirds of whom use some form of contraception. The HHS regulation does not apply to employees of churches but to workers in the separate nonprofit corporations spun off by religious institutions. It has little to do with health reform, and everything to do with the rights of employees under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.


Moses and Macaroons

April 9, 2009

Moses and Macaroons

Tonight the Obama family is hosting a Seder, a ritual meal celebrating the Jewish holiday of Passover. Many Americans are unfamiliar with the customs of this dinner, such as the compulsory obligations to tell the Exodus story and drink four glasses of wine (oh, the sacrifices …).

One seasonal mystery that puzzles Gentiles is the miraculous appearance of canned Kosher cookies in American supermarkets. Actually, Jews are puzzled by this as well, since the cookies are macaroons made with coconut, chocolate, and other ingredients which do not figure prominently in Old Testament texts.


Media Alert — Caution, Real News in DC This Weekend

January 16, 2009

Media Alert -- Caution, Real News in DC This Weekend

We hate to disturb working reporters covering the vital Celebrity Inaugural Ball lobster-booze-caviar beat, but real news may break in Washington this weekend. Okay, real political news, but that’s as close to “reality” as most remaining Washington scribes get these days.

Sleep-deprived, hung-over DC reporters should report to Howard University at 11AM Sunday for Chapel Call.  Stop groaning — it’s a story. The speaker will be Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., Pastor Emeritus of Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ. 

The nondenominational Chapel Call will be held at Howard’s huge Cramton Auditorium to accommodate the expected crush of Fox News, National Review, and Washington Times reporters. Just joshing — the popular weekly event outgrew Rankin Chapel and moved to Cramton long ago.


America’s Change of Poetic Vision

December 18, 2008

America's Change of Poetic Vision

The program for the January 20th Presidential Inauguration Ceremony is shaping up, and a few angles have people bent out of shape. Chief among them is the choice of clergyman for the traditional Invocation, Rick Warren of California’s Saddleback Church.

 Pastor Warren’s views, especially regarding sexual minorities, differ from those of the President-elect and many of his supporters, and some human rights advocates feel a strong sense of betrayal. The worst part of this controversy may be that the noise drowns out news of the strong, sure voice which will be heard  at the Presidential Podium after Rick Warren’s, the voice of poet Elizabeth Alexander.


The Enduring Faith of Phil Gramm

November 18, 2008

The Enduring Faith of Phil Gramm

“When I am on Wall Street and I realize that that’s the very nerve center of American capitalism and I realize what capitalism has done for the working people of America, to me that’s a holy place.”

“This is part of this myth of deregulation. By and large, credit-default swaps have distributed the risks. They didn’t create it. The only reason people have focused on them is that some politicians don’t know a credit-default swap from a turnip.”

“They are saying there was 15 years of massive deregulation and that’s what caused the problem. I just don’t see any evidence of it.”

— Texan Swiss banker and former Senator Phil Gramm, quoted  by Eric Lipton and Stephen Labaton (with Griff Palmer) in “The Reckoning: Deregulator Looks Back, Unswayed,” New York Times, November 16, 2008.


Monica Goodling Returns — Wonkette Buys Defibrillators, Oxygen

July 28, 2008

Blond, wide-eyed, loyal Republican-in-Christ Monica M. Goodling is back in the news, and the Blogosphere is panting. The Regent University alumna and Gonzales-era Justice official has been fingered in a probe by the DOJ Inspector General for violating federal law and Justice Department policy by injecting politics into Justice hiring and firing.

Unconfirmed reports claim this event has triggered deliveries of cardiac defillibrators and oxygen tanks to Wonkette bloggers and key commentators.

Take a deep breath before reading the story, folks. Relax; this won’t be going away any time soon.

Image by Mike Licht,

NotionsCapital has no connection to Wonkette, especially since it migrated to WordPress and commenters can’t get back on. Man, what a mess.

More Than Talk

May 16, 2008

More Than Talk
Rev. Jeremiah Wright, 1973

In 1972, a dynamic young pastor. Rev. Jeremiah Wright, assumed leadership of an 85-member middle class Chicago congregation, Trinity United Church of Christ. Like other UCC churches of that era, Trinity wished to appeal to middle class whites as well as blacks but, given its inner-city location, had difficultly attracting either after the 1968 riots following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.


Beyond Words

May 11, 2008

There is an organization in south Chicago, at 400 West 95th Street, (near three Chicago Housing Authority communities, La Salle Food & Liquor, and Blowout Hair Studio) that provides child care and counsels troubled families.

It runs a Family Rescue Shelter for victims of domestic abuse, provides computer training for children and teens, helps needy children get basic school supplies, runs job fairs and trains the unemployed and underemployed in the skills they need to compete for jobs.

It conducts support groups for cancer patients and their families, educates the community about early detection and prevention, and helps dispel myths and fears about cancer. It provides professional family, group, crisis, and grief counseling.


Pope — Sex Abuse by Priests is Very Very Bad

April 17, 2008

Pope -- Sex Abuse by Priests is Very Very Bad

Pope Benedict XVI is so “on-message” during his USA trip that he started in his airplane, before he landed.  His message seems to be:

Sex abuse by priests is very very bad.

Even when it isn’ t child sex abuse by priests, which it usually is.

Even when it isn’t gay sex abuse by priests, which it usually is.

Sex abuse by priests is part of the sexualization of American society.

Sexualization of American society is part of the secularization of American society.

Ergo, secularization is responsible for sex abuse by priests.

Victims of sex abuse by priests would really benefit from pastoral counseling.

By priests.

 Perhaps Mr. John Wojnowski will have something to say about that.


Crime Against Humanity — Fill ‘Er Up?

April 14, 2008

 Crime Against Humanity -- Fill 'Er Up

Here in Washington, DC, we await the visit of Pope Benedict XVI, who recently promulgated seven modern sins for the instruction of believers in the Catholic Church, second largest religion in the world and one-quarter of the U.S. population. Will His Holiness speak out about the largest contributing factor in the current world food crisis, the conversion of foodstuffs into fuel?

Washington would be an appropriate place for such statements. U.S. government incentives are largely responsible for this ill-conceived policy, responsible for rising world food prices, food riots and hunger. This is where the agri-business and energy industry lobbyists are, the people who convinced otherwise sane officials to make food scarce and expensive by putting it into automobile gas tanks.