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We review a book each month at A Public Witness and for this installment, Beau Underwood examines a memoir on family histories, racism, and what our society needs to do now. He highly recommends Lisa Sharon Harper.'s Fortune: How Race Broke My Family and the World — and How to Repair it All.

Darron LaMonte Edwards offers up some thoughts to consider this Independence Day weekend. The United States is currently divided by political party, white supremacy, and economic depravity. We are a nation in conflict and everybody is on edge. So what can we learn from a king named Asa?

Since being elected to lead the World Council of Churches earlier this month, the Rev. Jerry Pillay, former general secretary of the Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa, has been rebuffing critics who accuse him of making antisemitic remarks by referring to Israel’s treatment of Palestinians as tantamount to apartheid.

Marcia Pally, a professor at New York University and guest professor at Humboldt University-Berlin, talks with Word&Way President Brian Kaylor about her new book White Evangelicals and Right-Wing Populism: How Did We Get Here? She also discusses Jan. 6, political history, and economics.  

Church

Since being elected to lead the World Council of Churches earlier this month, the Rev. Jerry Pillay, former general secretary of the Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa, has been rebuffing critics who accuse him of making antisemitic remarks by referring to Israel’s treatment of Palestinians as tantamount to apartheid.

While the plan to split the mainline Protestant denomination over its disagreement about the ordination and marriage of LGBTQ United Methodists will likely still be considered at the next General Conference meeting, wavering support for the protocol leaves the church either imagining a new way forward or plunging into chaos, depending on whom you ask.

A Black Baptist preacher in Dallas, Texas, offered a fiery call at the general assembly of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship for Christians to engage in social justice even if they get attacked for being “heretics.”

Nation

In this issue of A Public Witness, we introduce the likely Republican gubernatorial nominee in Illinois. Then we revisit previous examples of interparty primary meddling before warning about the potential dangers of fueling Christian Nationalism for partisan gain.

The Supreme Court on Monday sided with a football coach from Washington state who sought to kneel and pray on the field after games. The court ruled 6-3 for the coach with the court’s conservative justices in the majority and its liberals in dissent. The justices said the coach’s prayer was protected by the First Amendment.

After nearly 50 years, Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion nationwide, is no more. In a decision Friday, the Supreme Court overruled both Roe, decided in 1973, and a 1992 decision in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which reaffirmed the constitutional right to abortion. The ruling came in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

World

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that made abortion legal nationwide, has prompted lawmakers in Israel to make it simpler to terminate a pregnancy. On Sunday, the parliament’s Labor Welfare and Health Committee approved new regulations to reduce the bureaucracy and intrusive questions that Israeli women have long faced when seeking an abortion.

Two priests, age 79 and 80, respectively, were shot to death in the small church on Cerocahui’s town square Monday (June 20), along with a tourist guide they tried to protect from a local criminal boss.

France’s top administrative court ruled Tuesday against allowing body-covering “burkini” swimwear in public pools for religious reasons, arguing that it violates the principle of government neutrality toward religion. While worn by only a small number of people in France, the head-to-ankle burkini draws intense political debate in the country.

Editorials

Editor-in-Chief Brian Kaylor responds to comments by Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President Al Mohler, who attacked Americans United for Separation of Church and State while he advocated for government prayers in public schools.

Editor-in-Chief Brian Kaylor reflects on starting a third year of a global pandemic. Looking at coverage of this pandemic and the flu pandemic of a century before, he offers some lessons to consider.

Brian Kaylor reacts with satirical humor and sharp criticism to Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt filing lawsuits against dozens of public school districts after school officials enacted mask rules to keep children and teachers healthy amid the omicron surge.

Word&Way Voices

Darron LaMonte Edwards offers up some thoughts to consider this Independence Day weekend. The United States is currently divided by political party, white supremacy, and economic depravity. We are a nation in conflict and everybody is on edge. So what can we learn from a king named Asa?

Contributing writer Greg Mamula offers the latest entry in a six-part series on the future of the church. In this third article, he uses the Apostle Paul as a model and focuses on how we should focus on building more and better networks in order to be agile and respond

Contributing writer Rodney Kennedy offers his thoughts on the controversy swirling around Phil Mickelson and other members of the PGA who decided to join the Saudi Arabia-backed professional golf tour. He argues that when we compare this to the Colin Kaepernick saga, we can see just how much whiteness and

E-Newsletter

We review a book each month at A Public Witness and for this installment, Beau Underwood examines a memoir on family histories, racism, and what our society needs to do now. He highly recommends Lisa Sharon Harper.'s Fortune: How Race Broke My Family and the World — and

In this issue of A Public Witness, we introduce the likely Republican gubernatorial nominee in Illinois. Then we revisit previous examples of interparty primary meddling before warning about the potential dangers of fueling Christian Nationalism for partisan gain.

We travel back to 1962 to consider the Court’s case on prayer in public schools (including how Word&Way praised the ruling at the time). Then we return to the present to analyze the arguments in Carson v. Makin before peering into the future to consider where this dangerous trip might be taking us.

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Podcasts

Marcia Pally, a professor at New York University and guest professor at Humboldt University-Berlin, talks with Word&Way President Brian Kaylor about her new book White Evangelicals and Right-Wing Populism: How Did We Get Here? She also discusses Jan. 6, political history, and economics.  

In episode 56 of Dangerous Dogma, Terri Hord Owens, General Ministery and President of The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), talks with Word&Way President Brian Kaylor about her experiences in leading a Mainline Protestant denomination today. She also discusses racism,

In episode 55 of Dangerous Dogma, Luke Timothy Johnson, author of The Mind in Another Place: My Life as a Scholar, talks about his life as a biblical scholar and teacher. He also discusses biblical interpretation, preaching, and theological education.

In episode 54 of Dangerous Dogma, Khalia Williams, associate dean of worship and music at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University, talks about teaching and leading worship and co-director the Baptist Studies Program. She also discusses worship in light

Books

We review a book each month at A Public Witness and for this installment, Beau Underwood examines a memoir on family histories, racism, and what our society needs to do now. He highly recommends Lisa Sharon Harper.'s Fortune:

Robert D. Cornwall reviews Psalms: The Prayer Book of the Bible by Dietrich Bonhoeffer with a new introduction from Walter Brueggemann. While Bonhoeffer was thoroughly trained in the historical-critical method of biblical interpretation, in his book on the Psalms he

Robert D. Cornwall reviews Words of Love: A Healing Journey with the Ten Commandments by Eugenia Anne Gamble. This book reflects on the Commandments in a manner that is both deeply spiritual and personal and we see aspects that people

Robert D. Cornwall reviews Churches and the Crisis of Decline: A Hopeful, Practical Ecclesiology for a Secular Age by Andrew Root. This book explores the question of what the church might look like in the future as it experiences a