Essay / Culture

Anywhere But the Suburbs

There are occasional days when I heartily affirm with Randy Newman: ‘I love LA!’ More often, I hate it. On Tuesday morning I flew back to Los Angeles, with its cars and concrete, its hurry and hustle and hassle. I had been in the Southeast

Essay / Art

What is the What: Sudan, Manute Bol and Activistic Art

Last week, Manute Bol died. The tallest and thinnest man in the NBA, he was a shot-blocker on stilts, an amusing presence, really, a trivia answer. He was also, it turns out, a very good man. Bol grew up in southern Sudan, a largely Christian

Essay / Culture

Winston Churchill on George Washington and Abraham Lincoln

America has been blessed many times throughout its history with remarkable leaders. Winston Churchill, who many know as the Prime Minster of Great Britain during WWII, was keenly interested in American history. He was interested in American history partly because his mother was an American,

Essay / Culture

MLK: "To Go Forward, We've Got To Go Back."

The greatest works of Martin Luther King, Jr. are the “I have a dream” sermon and the “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” These are MLK at his best, when his preparation and his personal struggles lined up providentially with the turbulent events of the civil

Essay / Culture

A Terrible Little Stroll with C.S. Lewis

Who, I ask you, wouldn’t enjoy taking a walk around the Oxford countryside with C.S. Lewis? Surely, no matter what you wanted to talk about, that many-sided man, that generous soul and omnivorous reader would be able to engage you in illuminating conversation. Surely. But

Essay / Culture

Happy Birthday, Rudyard Kipling

Question: “Do you like Kipling?” Answer: “I don’t know, I’ve never kippled.” Today (December 30) is the birthday of Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936), the enormously popular writer who was the first English author to win the Nobel Prize in literature (1907) in his early 40s. But

Essay / Culture

Gladstone: The Impregnable Rock of Holy Scripture

Today (December 29) is the birthday of William Ewart Gladstone (1809-1898), who has been called “the most eminent of the eminent Victorians.” Gladstone the politician dominated British history throughout the bulk of the nineteenth century: He became a Member of Parliament in 1832, and remained

Essay / Culture

How the Trinity Freed the Slaves (Happy Birthday Granville Sharp)

Today (November 10) is the birthday of Granville Sharp (1735-1813). Sharp is remembered for two major accomplishments. First, you will find his name in every history of the abolition of the slave trade. His involvement began when he met a man named Jonathan Strong, a

Essay / Culture

The Peace of Westphalia

Today (October 24) in 1648 the Treaty of Münster was signed. Together with the signing of an earlier treaty, this event is known as the Peace of Westphalia. It brought a resolution to the terrible conflicts we call the “wars of religion,” chiefly the Thirty

Essay / Culture

Happy First Day of Creation

Today, October 23, is the day the world was made, a little over six thousand years ago. It was a Saturday night. It happened late in the day, at the time of day we would call nightfall once there was a night to fall. Archbishop

Essay / Culture

For The Love of Service

Have you ever had a week that was so taxing that the only thing that keeps you going is the belief that it can only continue for so long? I recently had one of those weeks. I had finally made it to the Saturday following

Essay / Culture

The Secret of Marriage (for Paul and Charity)

If the old-fairy-tale ending “They lived happily ever after” is taken to mean “They felt for the next fifty years exactly as they felt the day before they were married,” then it says what probably never was nor ever would be true, and would be