Exorcism and 'deliverance ministries' targeted at gay people and others are on the rise in sections of the church, says Joseph Laycock. But perhaps it is the exchange in which both responsibility and autonomy are forfeited in favour of superstition which is the true “deal with devil.”
Researchers have been looking at ‘Giving USA’ for 2009. While the category of religion may not always overwhelm casual readers of trend-reports, writes Martin E. Marty, religious giving is much watched. And there is much to watch and reflect on.
Cheaply produced (if expensive to consume), Sarah Palin is a popular commodity whose religious saleability is evidenced by the merchandise generated around her, says Jeremy Biles. He compares and contrasts this phenomenon with that of the destroyed 'Touchdown Jesus' statue and asks what the iconography of faith says about actual belief.
The 2010 World Cup will absorb acres of newsprint, whole swathes of the internet and hours of broadcast time in the coming weeks. Ekklesia will offer an alternative perspective - looking at the social justice issues behind the sporting headlines.
Our humanity - with all its redeeming points - can overtake our particular fears, angers and doubts, says Harry Hagopian. For him, an Armenian, a chance encounter with a Turk proved a compass point in this quest and possibility to move beyond confrontation.
A Handbook of Theological Education in World Christianity, released at the Edinburgh 2010 conference, provides "a world-class resource for all of us who feel a need for continuing ecumenical formation", says the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches.
The decline and problems faced by The Crystal Cathedral and other mega-churches has been an occasion for Schadenfreude for those inside and outside the Christian community, says Martin Marty. This is too simple and too judgmental a view.
Football connects people in positive ways, but also exposes the limitations and injustices of human society, says Tinyiko Sam Maluleke, reflecting on modern South Africa, the World Cup, and the challenge of global Christianity.
G. K. Chesterton, it could be said, consumed the world; but the world did not consume Chesterton. Ian Gerdon celebrates his literary and theological imagination while pointing out the very human contradictions that make him both enduringly appealing and questionable.
Beyond the raw facts of the bruised and bloodied bodies, and the grief of those mourning the loss of loved ones, says Gordon Lynch, the unfolding story of the Israeli navy’s assault on the Gaza aid flotilla has wider symbolic significance.
The ConLib Queen's Speech, setting out the coalition's legislative programme for government looks pale and unambitious compared to the version Green Party leader and MP Caroline Lucas has offered to Channel 4 News.
Behind the tasks of politics, religion, philosophy and science lie abiding concerns about human nature and destiny, says Michael Meacher. In his new book, while eschewing conventional faith, he explains why he thinks life and humanity are full of purpose.
To question the sacralized version of violent history and ‘salvation’ embodied in the ANZAC weekend celebrations in Australia and New Zealand is to risk being accused of ‘blasphemy’ and causing great offence, says Jarrod McKenna. Yet Christians have to risk offending in order to witness to the nonviolent overcoming we encounter and are changed by in Christ’s cross, and to point a better way forward for humanity.