Wednesdays' News & Ideas - 10/16/2019

  • Secrecy vs. discernment at synod
  • Critic Harold Bloom dies
  • We need Christian colleges
  • Genesis in a dying world
  • German anti-Semitism on the rise
  • Spain's happy little carless city

Amazon synod's secrecy shows tension between transparency and discernment
National Catholic Reporter: The synod got underway with one of the most exhaustive, inclusive and transparent preparation periods in the 50-year history of Catholic synods. But once the opening business finished, that practice of transparency effectively ceased.

Harold Bloom obituary
The Guardian: The renowned literary critic argued in “The American Religion” that denominational lineages, established doctrines and theological distinctions meant less in America than an Emersonian theology of unmediated experience of the self as God. 

Why we still need Christian colleges
Christianity Today: As the liberal arts struggle, we should rally around Christian campuses that still embrace them.

Reading the creation story in a dying world
Christian Century: If the poetry of Genesis reminds us that all forms of life share in the life of God, then the care we offer in a dying world resists the myth of separation that has authorized so much disregard and destruction, writes scholar Debra Dean Murphy.

Never again? The Halle attack and everyday anti-Semitism in Germany
Der Spiegel: The near bloodbath in the Halle synagogue is only the shocking climax of a development that Jews have been sensing for years. Jews in Germany are taunted and harassed every day, often -- but by no means exclusively -- by the far right.

The Spark

Spain’s happy little carless city
The city of Pontevedra, population 84,000, has done something remarkable: it has reduced car use in its historic core by 90 percent, and citywide by half. And it has done it without blanket fees or bans, instead using clever engineering and some gentle nudging to get people out of their cars and onto the street.

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