Friday's News & Ideas - 4/19/2019

  • Good Friday & death penalty
  • 7 last words services
  • Avoid anti-Judaism on Easter
  • Houston churches merge
  • Church fires and abuse
  • Goddess of fire

We should preach about the death penalty on Good Friday
National Catholic Reporter: To avoid preaching about the evil of the death penalty on Good Friday is akin to not preaching about the joy of the resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Black women cracking 'stained-glass ceilings' with Jesus' 7 last words
Religion News Service: Churches across the country are hosting Good Friday services this year that feature seven African-American female preachers expounding on the last seven phrases uttered by Jesus before his crucifixion.

Holy Week and the hatred of the Jews: How to avoid anti-Judaism this Easter
Australian Broadcasting Corporation: Christians called Jews -- the collective, all Jews -- "Christ-killers." How can a gospel of love be proclaimed, if that same gospel is heard to promote hatred of Jesus's own people?

St. Peter reborn: A gay, black preacher and his diverse congregation merge with one of Houston's oldest white churches
The Houston Chronicle: As two Houston churches merged, St. Peter's received the vibrant young people its congregation had prayed for.

For survivors of clergy abuse, watching a beloved cathedral go up in smoke felt viscerally familiar
Baptist News Global: Those who have experienced harassment, abuse and even rape at the hands of clergy have been watching their sacred space burn for years.

The Spark

Goddess of fire
In the Hawaiian religion, Pele is the goddess of volcanoes, fire and lightning. She is believed to have created the Hawaiian islands, and is considered to be a sacred, primordial force. Watch a park ranger rediscover his namesake and relationship to Pele at The Atlantic.

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