Thursday's News & Ideas

  • Lessons from Mars Hill
  • Misconceptions about seminarians
  • Why church choirs are dying
  • Justin Welby's doubts
  • Pastoral succession book
  • Johnny Cash in the Holy Land

The reckoning of Mars HillSeattle Weekly: As an allegedly abusive megachurch implodes, former members and other Christians ask: What can we learn from this?

7 misconceptions about people who go to seminaryUrban Faith: There are many misconceptions about people who go to seminary and Bible schools, here are a few, explained and debunked.

Many church choirs are dying. Here's whyReligion News Service: The newly released National Congregations Study finds church choirs are on the downbeat in white Protestant churches across the theological spectrum.

Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of GodThe (London) Guardian: Justin Welby tells BBC radio interviewer there are moments when he doubts -- but he is certain about the existence of Jesus.

Book on pastoral succession: 'All pastors are interim pastors'Religion News Service: For congregations that haven't thought about who will succeed their current pastor, the authors of a new book have words of warning: Be prepared.

The Spark

Johnny Cash in the Holy LandAmerican Christianity, in its many persuasions and denominations, has a very long history of engagement with the idea and reality of Zion, the Tablet reports. Eleven years after their deaths, Johnny and June Carter Cash stand as exemplars of the complexity and depth of the American connection to both the idea and reality of the promised land.

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