That Was The Week That Was

This week I invited readers to help me launch a new book project, opened a Lenten devotional series from the Conference on Faith and History and recorded a podcast about the National Anthem and athlete protests. Elsewhere:

• For Democratic voters in New York, complained one Slate columnist, “celebrating the idea of the competent blue-state governor is more important than reckoning with the reality of a serially underachieving chief executive playing three-card monte with dead bodies.”

• I’m not sure there’s ever going to be a right time to praise Rush Limbaugh… but if it’s too early to speak ill of the late talk radio fixture, it’s certainly not too late to consider how a 1930s priest paved the way for Limbaugh.

In 1939, a couple in Michigan listens to Father Charles Coughlin… who, incidentally, shows up twice in my Lindbergh biography – Library of Congress

• The latest evidence of the strength of Christian nationalist conspiracy theories: a conservative think tank found that a large majority of white evangelicals believe the lie that Joe Biden stole the 2020 election.

• For Peter Manseau, the story of one Christian participant in the January Capitol invasion “highlights the complex influence some churches have had through the past tumultuous months, and may yet in the future.”

• Does the United States need to learn from Germany’s post-WWII commitment to “defensive democracy“?

• Thanks to Miles Mullin for coming back to The Anxious Bench to review a religious biography of a key Cold War statesman.

• Now most of us are finally moving on from the U.S. election, there’s new international attention to a church massacre in the Tigray region of Ethiopia.

• The same week that PBS aired a two-part series on The Black Church, Pew released a major new study of African American religion.

• Theme music for Lent: the blues.

• Men are much more likely than women to be nonreligious… except during one age range.

• Do gender and race shape teaching evaluations? Yes, finds one study, but in more complex ways than we may assume.

• COVID hasn’t done anything to slow down admissions at elite universities, but it’s a different story among less selective schools.