Lost in all of the news about the deposition of Bishop Bennison and the actions of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, was a rather important event in the history of the Episcopal Church. Yesterday more than 500 worshippers from across the nation, including over 12 Bishops, took part in a service of public atonement for the Episcopal Church’s silence about slavery.
I don’t believe in God, but I miss Him,” the book begins. Julian Barnes, an atheist turned agnostic, has decided at the age of 62 to address his fear of death — why should an agnostic fear death who has no faith in an afterlife? How can you be frightened of Nothing? On this simple question Barnes has hung an elegant memoir and meditation, a deep seismic tremor of a book that keeps rumbling and grumbling in the mind for weeks thereafter.
As the United States staggers from its credit binge to a straitened future, the religious holidays demand their own form of self-denial. Jews fast on Yom Kippur and, for the most observant, the Fast of Gedalia, which comes the day after Rosh Hashana. Devout Muslims did not take food or drink during daylight hours for the entire month of Ramadan, which ended this week.
When chatter about candidates and platforms fills the airwaves, when everyone pontificates about the last debate or recent TV appearance, you can seem out of touch with reality or too timid if you don’t join in the national conversation and take a public stand. Who wants to go to a church led by an irrelevant coward?