Religion story of the year

Adelle Banks of RNS reports:

President Obama’s speech to the Muslim world has been ranked by the nation’s religion journalists as the top religion story of the year.

Evangelical leader Rick Warren … was named the 2009 Religion Newsmaker of the Year.

For Anglican navel gazers, the Communion showed up at #9 and #10:

9. The Episcopal Church’s General Convention votes to end a moratorium on installing gay bishops, disregarding a request from the archbishop of Canterbury.

10. President Obama’s inauguration features controversial prayers by evangelical megachurch pastor Rick Warren and civil rights veteran Joseph Lowery, as well as a pre-ceremony prayer by gay Episcopal Bishop V. Gene Robinson.

And at #12, in the words of the Religion Newswriters Association press release, “The Anglican Church in North America elects Robert Duncan, deposed Episcopal bishop of Pittsburgh, as archbishop, signifying that the breakaway group is not going to go away.”

For newsmaker of the year, Warren came out ahead of “Pope Benedict XVI; Archbishop Robert Duncan, who heads a new theologically conservative Anglican church; Jim Wallis, Sojourner’s editor and outspoken advocate for social justice issues; and Mark Hanson, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America throughout its long debate on ordaining gay clergy.”

If you are planning to visit ACNA, Lionel Deimel has kindly provided a tour guide blog post.

It’s that time of year. Ben Bernanke has been named TIME’s Person of the Year. Foreign Policy agrees — Bernanke is first among its 100 Top Global Thinkers. Oddly enough, the list is heavy with economists. Foreign Policy also observes, “it would surely be wrong to make the Top Dead Thinker of 2009 an economic theorist” though later adding,

Consider this: The argument for avoiding mass bank failures was made by Friedman, not Keynes. It was Friedman who argued that the principal reason for the depth of the Depression was the Fed’s failure to avoid an epidemic of bank failures. It has been Friedman, more than Keynes, who has been Bernanke’s inspiration over the past two years, as the Fed chairman has honored a pledge he made shortly before Friedman’s death not to preside over another “great contraction.” Nor would Friedman have been in the least worried about inflation at a time like this. “

My faith in economists is restored.

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