Friday's News & Ideas

  • Can you get swine flu from a communion chalice, or is paranoia our real problem?
  • Robin Hood is popular (again)
  • Superheroes patrol Cincinnati

The religious dimensions of the torture debatePew Forum: Survey finds that support for terror-suspect torture differs among the faithful; more often Americans go to church, more likely they are to support torture.

Diocese makes financial progressBoston Globe: The Archdiocese of Boston slowly digging out of financial hole caused by clergy scandals but still facing pension fund challenges.

Can Communion chalice transmit swine flu?Religion News Service: Religious groups urging houses of worship to take special precautions this weekend, including changing sacred practices.ELCA News Service: ELCA issues statement, resources about worship and influenzaWashington Post: Forget germs. The real contagion is our paranoia

Fewer receive sacramentsColumbus (Ohio) Dispatch: Young adult Catholics less likely than earlier generations to have celebrated the sacraments.Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Bishop to lead rosary march

Double Spark

Why does Robin Hood keep coming back? And who is Shadow Hare?

Green tights. Pointy cap. Bow and arrow. Why the enduring fascination with the bandit, Robin Hood? In the BBC Magazine, one scholar says the character's popularity has long represented people's frustrations with life in capitalist society. His appeal arises from primal desires for justice and equity. Though medieval in origins, Robin Hood “is a fantasy broad and deep enough to possess the imaginations of people in almost all times and places." Maybe even this new team of Cincinnati crime-fighters, featured on the Wired website: the “Allegiance of Heroes.”