The Matthew Shepard murder revisited

With October being LGBTQ History Month it allows the LGBTQ community to look back at historical events. And Matthew Shepard’s murder is one of them.

This October marks nineteen years since the death of Matthew Shepard. In October 1998, Shepard, then 21, was a first-year college student at University of Wyoming. Under the guise of friendship, two men (Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson) lured Shepard from a tavern, tortured and bludgeoned him with their rifles, and then tethered him to a rough-hewn wooden fence to die – simply because he was gay.

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Presence and Process

While the Christian church in 21st century North America is experiencing decline, interest in Buddhist-derived Mindfulness meditation is on the rise. Yet Christianity also has a rich meditative/contemplative tradition.

This book is an exploration of meditative/contemplative practices in both Christian and Buddhist contexts, emphasizing their areas of affinity. Common characteristics and effects of meditative/contemplative practices are defined.

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Faith and Reason 360

As fires rage in California and hurricanes menace the Gulf Coast and the Caribbean, hosts Ann Phelps and Debo Dykes talk with guest Frederica Helmiere about the environment and what lessons Christians can learn from their interaction with the natural world.

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Catholic church to make record divestment from fossil fuels

By Arthur Neslen for The Guardian

More than 40 Catholic institutions are to announce the largest ever faith-based divestment from fossil fuels, on the anniversary of the death of St Francis of Assisi.

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Interview with Robin Meyers: Do you have a message for progressive Christians?

Interview with Robin Meyers: Do you have a message for progressive Christians?

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How I Repented from My LGBTQI+ Stance

Recently, many in the LGBTQI+ community, as well as those who identify as allies, celebrated Coming Out Day. As most of us are probably aware, coming out can be a momentous occasion, but it can also be quite terrifying. And I can understand why; those who are more religiously-inclined tend to shun and scapegoat any and all who are not heterosexual—with God on their side of course—and even those who stand in solidarity with non-heterosexual folks. So needless to say, coming out can be quite the stress-inducing situation in our current culture (and most cultures that have preceded ours).

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Prayer and God

Whether the person engaged in the act of prayer believes in a supernatural deity or force or the benevolence of the universe, we are the only answer we’ve got to the challenges facing our world. Some will work toward solutions compelled by the god in whom they believe. Others will work toward solutions compelled by theirs own sense of compassion and responsibility. Goodness comes into the world through our own hands, voices, and actions.

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The word “God”

In religious as well as other history, when we don’t know our own history, we are condemned to repeat it. Condemned not by anyone else, not even “God”, but by ourselves and the consequences of our own willful ignorance.

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The Death and Resurrection of God: The Story in a Post-Christian World

A paper presented to the Living Traditions Symposium Atlantic School of Theology. Oct. 13, 2017

I propose in this presentation to give a glimpse of the material, spiritual, and historical reality as we can now understand it, and explore its implications for Christianity and all religions.

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Whitney Houston comes out posthumously

Houston exhibiting gender non-conforming behavior was no secret to those closest to her. The Daily Mail reported that Houston’s sister-in-law, Tina Brown, and her ex-bodyguard, Kevin Ammons, both believed Houston may have been a lesbian because she “had wild sex sessions with women while out of her mind on crack cocaine.”

But it was her ex-spouse, Brown, who over time came to believe Whitney married him with an ulterior motive.

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Why We Stay: What The History Of Mormonism Reveals About The Origins Of “Rae”

By Max Mueller for Religion Dispatches

Americans cannot understand our race past and present without grappling with the power of religion—in particular religious writings—to unify and divide. If race is primarily a construction of culture, then the original construction site was on the page, in particular, as I mentioned before, on the pages of our religious writings. And I’m not just talking about sacred scriptures. I’m talking about all the writings that America’s religious people produce in relationship (intertextually) with their religious scriptures. From public writings like sermons and legal codes, to private writings like journals and letters, these writings all make up what I call the “Mormon archive,” which is a smaller part of the “American archive.” The archive, I argue, is not just a physical and metaphorical space where (race) history is preserved. It is also where (race) history is made.

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Why Guadalupe?

In the lowest middle niche, there is a painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe directly behind a statue of Jesus on a cross.

Every time I see that Lady, I get ticked off! Why? I can never figure out why this fantasy person is so important or why she deserves all this adoration. Let me briefly share her story. Then I’ll tell you why she ticks me off.

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The LGBTQAlphabet – six letters will never be enough

For this year’s Pride, we collaborated with The LGBT Community Center, NYC’s home and hub for the LGBTQA community, to create a film celebrating the entire LGBTQA Alphabet—twenty-six ways to share who you are and how you love. Because all voices deserve to be heard.

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Bringing God Back

The problem with the Christian church in Western Europe is that it has little or no impact on the society at large. You can’t have an impact if the pews are empty. With the possible exception of Evangelical Protestants, the same trend is occurring in America, though at a slower rate. Museums are in our future too. Millennials are abandoning Christianity in record numbers. Like the people I spoke to in Denmark, they do not reject God but rather Christian doctrine.

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Survival @ 2.5 Minutes to Midnight

For 70 years, The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has maintained the Doomsday Clock, a graphic representation of the level of danger to the planet from nuclear weapons and other threats. Partly because of the election of Donald Trump, it has moved the clock from 3 to 2.5 minutes from midnight. The danger has been dire for many decades, and now it is worse – but only by a small increment.

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Treasure Map: Christians United in the Search

For 2,000+ years, Christians have studied the words of Jesus, the Apostles, Ancient Israelite prophets, psalmists and lawmakers in the Bible. We have been locked in theological debate over the meaning of life and how to achieve the union with God we so desire.

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Spiritual but Not Religious Should Be a Phase in Life, Not a Way of Life

By Inas Younis for Patheos

Do you identify as spiritual but not religious? If so, you are certainly not alone.

According to a recent Pew Research report, one-fifth of the adult population describe themselves as religiously unaffiliated. That’s a 15 percent increase from five years ago, and the percentage goes higher the younger you are. The “I am spiritual but not religious,” trend is the fastest-growing demographic in the U.S.

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USA’s First Certified Slaughter-free Dairy Opens at Gita Nagari

At the European Leaders’ Meetings this fall, ISKCON leaders from all over Europe discussed a common dilemma for devotees today: do we drink milk, an important staple of the ISKCON diet? Or do we avoid it, since today’s store-bought milk supports the slaughter industry?

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