Thursday's News & Ideas

  • Remedies for church polarization
  • Banality of clergy failure
  • Future for Iraqi Christians
  • Schaefer appeals
  • Mormons punished for online comments
  • Hermit wanted

Fighting polarization within the churchNational Catholic Reporter: If our political life now seems incapable of finding any remedy to the polarization of the moment, the Catholic Church does have multiple remedies at hand.

The banality of clergy failureChristian Century: "Sam!" she says. She's greeting me as if I changed her life. Unfortunately, I haven't a clue who she is.

As ISIS advances, what future for Iraqi Christians?Christian Science Monitor: Tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have fled Mosul and its region after ISIS seized the city, uprooting communities tied to some of the earliest Christian societies.

Methodist pastor who performed gay son's wedding to appeal defrockingLos Angeles Times: Frank Schaefer, a Methodist pastor who was defrocked for officiating at his gay son's wedding, will appeal his punishment to a Methodist judicial panel this week.

Mormons say critical online comments draw threats from churchThe New York Times: From California to Virginia, more than a dozen Mormons say they face excommunication or other punishment because of comments they had made online about their faith.

The Spark

In Switzerland, city seeks a hermit who also likes peopleA Catholic weekly in Switzerland recently carried an unusual job ad: "Are you an idealistic, religious person who enjoys meeting people?" The ad was placed by the small Alpine city of Solothurn. As the Wall Street Journal reports, it is searching for a new hermit.

Want to get News & Ideas in your inbox every weekday?Subscribe to our News & Ideas newsletter.