That Was The Week That Was

This’ll be my last post for a while, as we enjoy a family reunion and wedding. Meanwhile, enjoy these posts you might have missed during the past week:


• There’s a spiritual side to The Spirit of St. Louis (the Lindbergh memoir that is… and the Billy Wilder film adaptation of it).

• I’m still working on an “elevator speech” version of the Pietist option. But one way or another, know that it’s not a quick fix.

…There and Everywhere

• Speaking of things not given to quick fixes… The reason I wrote so little here is that I spent a lot of time polishing an Anxious Bench essay on Christian colleges and sexuality, responding to critiques by Carl Trueman and Rod Dreher.

• Dreher was kind enough to reprint parts of my piece in a dismissive response at The American Conservative. I’d link back, but I can save you the time: he thinks I’m throwing up my hands up in surrender.

(Thanks to Scot McKnight for suggesting that his Jesus Creed readers consider the Pietist option as an alternative to Dreher’s own much-discussed option.)

• In related news… Jamie Smith wondered if it’s appropriate to use sexuality and marriage as markers of small-o orthodoxy. (For a thoughtful critique of Smith, head over to Derek Rishmawy’s blog.)

• Does the next wave in evolutionary biology point “to a more holistic system than scientists have traditionally seen, one more open to some divine inspiration for life”?

• Bob Smietana shared a fascinating interview with two scholars of independent network Christianity.

• Does the decline of small town businesses and suburban malls have any implications for churches?

Dying mall
Dying mall in Maryland – Creative Commons (goblinbox)

Same question, subbing laundromats for malls and colleges for churches.

• Once more with feeling: why having strong public colleges and universities is valuable, even for their private competitors.

• Did you know that first-generation college students are the most likely to major in the humanities or social sciences? (I didn’t.)

• It’s been a quarter-century now since one of my favorite bands released an album that both “embodies a broader, more spacious Midwest” and “a Midwest as surveyed by an Old Testament prophet dispensing curses and blessings…”