Israel’s Liturgy of Torture

Over the last week, thousands of Palestinians, Jews, and internationals protested the illegal and inhumane treatment of Palestinian prisoners.  800 Palestinian prisoners declared a one-day fast in protest of Israel’s detention policies, an act of solidarity with four men who continue an ongoing hunger strike calling an end to the unjust detention of Palestinians without charge and without trial.  The UN officials, remarking on the hunger strike that reached its 200th day, commented: “Israel must end the appalling and unlawful treatment of Palestinian detainees. The international community must react with a sense of urgency and use whatever leverage it possesses to end Israel’s abusive reliance on administrative detention.”  Clashes between the Israel Defense Force and protesting Palestinians became routine throughout the West Bank, as stones seemed to warrant a vast array of responses from the IDF: tear gas, skunk water, stun grenades, rubber bullets, and in some cases live ammunition.


And just as the international community began to report on the ongoing hunger strikes, Palestinian... Read More

On Wealth and Freezing to Death

Jimmy Fulmer used to frequent the Co-op for lunch on a daily basis.  He was quiet and kept to himself.  I didn’t know him very well, I just knew who he was.  After his death, I contemplated that I really only knew him through his quiet demeanor and physical addictions.  If I were to die, I would hate to be known only through the worst of what people saw in me.  In life, many still ‘name’ people based on the worst of their actions, stripping... Read More

Coming Up: Thoughts on St. Basil the Great’s Homilies: On Social Justice

I just picked up a collection of sermons by St. Basil the Great from the Popular Patristic Series put out by St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press.  This is the first collection of St. Basil’s work particularly dedication to Social Justice in the English language; hence the title On Social Justice.  In the coming weeks, I will be working my way through these sermons, starting with “To the Rich,” and blogging my thoughts as they... Read More

Invisible Children: A Political Theology for Emerging Humanitarians

[Editor’s note: the following is a guest post written by Scott Schomburg, who is an M.Div ’13 candidate at Duke Divinity School, with research interests in political theology and contemporary humanitarianism. A previous version of this was posted here] A new generation of humanitarians is coming-of-age in North America, turned toward an image of Africa in flames.  Ugandan scholar, Mahmood Mamdani, has analyzed this emerging humanitarian... Read More

Non-Voting as a form of Christian Political Witness

As a Christian, I am increasingly aware of the all things that aren’t God but that we tend to worship nonetheless.  On the top of this list of idolatry is the place of the nation-state.  We know with our hearts and minds that the United States is not God, but I don’t think we’ve learned it with our bodies.  Our hearts profess Jesus as Lord but our faith lies in the mechanism of the state.  When the financial crises occurred in 2008, it was... Read More

What does Reinhold Niebuhr have to do with Drones?

During Pres. Obama’s first year in office, he testified that Reinhold Niebuhr was his favorite theologian.  R. Niebuhr is of course famous, in part, because of his writings on “Christian Realism.”  I am under the impression that the vast majority of American Christians live under the Christian Realist moniker without ever having heard of Reinhold Niebuhr.  His ability to uphold Jesus’ principled way of nonviolence as “ultimately normative”... Read More

Why is the church important? (A note on the eschatological roots of Christianity)

A friend of mine who serves in a ministerial position prompted me with the question, “Why is the church important?” Obviously this is a very broad and opened ended question, without parameters—other than knowing his purpose was to teach young people in a retreat setting. However, rather than go through a whole proper prolegomena, I tried to say in brief why the church is important from my theological perspective. Here is what I said, with minor... Read More

We are back!

We apologize for the hiatus from this blog, but things are changing! Due to personal reasons of a different nature for each of us, keeping this blog going and building momentum was not in the cards until now, so we have decided to publish regular pieces this semester and see where we stand this winter. Expect a little more variety than the blog title might suggest, as well as some guest posts, but this blog will still revolve around conversations... Read More

Adele’s Pathological Perversion, or We’re Sorry Saint Valentine

On this Valentines day, here is a short meditation on dealing with relational destruction. Clearly I’m a cheery one. Actually, this is provoked by my annoyance with the recent ubiquity of Adele’s song, which I find insidious. Considering that Saint Valentine was martyred––a witness to the truth––I think he would agree with the need for honesty. Especially on a day that is his namesake. If you haven’t heard, Adele did quite... Read More

Videos: Marketing and the Economy

Here is a brief break from the usual kind of post, because in the past couple of months I found a couple videos that are too good not to share. Riley, a young, thoughtful feminist on marketing and gender: And Econ Stories has a number of spoken word/hip hop videos explaining Hayek and Keynes, and they are very well done in both content and production value. Econ Stories is headed up by producer/director John Papola and Dr. Russell Roberts at George... Read More