17 November 2008

November snippets

  • Philip Jenkins, author of The Next Christendom, has done it again. Just out is his new book, The Lost History of Christianity, whose subtitle says it all: "The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia — and How It Died." It is a riveting account and definitely merits a review, which is forthcoming in this space.

  • Fr. Neuhaus has posted a short piece unsurprisingly titled: The Coming Kulturkampf. Here's an especially trenchant paragraph:

    Christians do want to be useful in their Babylonian captivity. They follow the counsel of the prophet Jeremiah who urged the children of Israel to seek the peace of the city of their exile, for in its peace is also their peace. The great danger, then and now, is that, in being useful to the city of their exile, they forget the New Jerusalem, the city of their destination. It really is not terribly gratifying to be a “religious vote” eagerly sought by the partisan factions of Babylon when we remember that [Jesus] called us to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world.

    Somewhat less helpful is his discussion of culture, which is missing a rather crucial component: the human element of shaping responsibly the world of which we are part. Neuhaus would do well to read H. Henry Meeter, The Basic Ideas of Calvinism, especially chapter 7: "Human Culture."

  • New Brunswick's Telegraph-Journal has published an op-ed piece favouring electoral reform: Respect voters through proportional representation. Bravo!

  • Oh, no. Not again: Ex-Harvard scholar enters Liberal leadership race.

  • The fires sweeping through southern California have affected Redeemer's sister institution, Westmont College in Santa Barbara. Thank God that no lives were lost, though much property is now gone. Please remember the Westmont community in your prayers.

  • Two weekends ago I was in the Boston area for two events. First, congratulations are due to my niece Bethany Givens and her new husband Brian Blankespoor, who were married in Andover, Massachusetts. Second, I was privileged to speak to the members of the first-year American government course at Gordon College. The instructor is Dr. Paul Brink, a 1993 graduate of Redeemer's political science programme. If any of his students are reading this, I bring them greetings and thank them for their hospitality and stimulating company.

  • This had to happen sooner or later: Extinction Threatens Yellow-Pages Publishers. I guess most of our fingers now do the walking over the keypad rather than the phone book.
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