August 15, 2007
Regarding ?Public School stage not the place for God,? Mailbag, Saturday: I could certainly understand citing the 1st Amendment in being critical of the presentations at John Burroughs High School ? if there was actually a connection or a point, but there isn?t, so I don?t. Before we wring our hands and whine while citing the separation of church and state, perhaps we might all revisit the history book and actually read the 1st Amendment: ?Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
August 22, 2009
A recent article on CNN.com reported that the number of young Muslims using the Internet to connect and learn more about their religion is increasing. One young Islamic woman even started a website “as a place for young people in the region to ‘show a different side of our religion and discuss topics big and small, taboo and not,’” the article says. How important do you believe technology is in giving young adults the ability to learn more about, and even challenge, the basic tenets of their religion?
October 5, 2002
Mel Wolf's complicated treatise (Sept. 18) on the invocation at City Council meetings basically says we should pursue the issue to a higher court, hopefully overruling the lower court decision not allowing the name of a specific deity in City Council invocations. What about the atheist or agnostic in our society who doesn't share the supposed religious beliefs of a community? And I emphasize supposed, because I believe most people hold their religious beliefs quite loosely.
May 3, 2013
Can believers and nonbelievers connect? Is there a common ground they can agree on? Writing in the New York Times, T. M. Luhrmann thinks there may be, but admits it's going to be difficult. The author of "When God Talks Back: Understanding the American Evangelical Relationship With God," about how evangelicals develop the skills to speak to God and how it can change their minds, says that there's a line in the sand between those with faith and those without, a line that cannot be crossed because of the fundamental differences in beliefs and outlook.
October 11, 2008
Atheists and agnostics, your prayers are answered with the release of ?Religulous,? a comedy disguised as a documentary and hosted by your spiritual leader, Bill Maher. This low-budget new release is offensive, insightful and controversial. It?s also the funniest movie I?ve ever seen on the polarizing subject of religion. Larry Charles, the director of ?Borat,? is back with a vengeance, and this time the high priest of comedy is making fun of Christians, Jews, Muslims and anybody else stupid enough to be interviewed by his guerrilla filmmaking crew as they go on a comedy pilgrimage across the globe visiting holy sites and sacred areas.
September 1, 2007
A n AP-MTV poll has found that after their relationship with parents and friends, 55% of youths say religion makes them happy. Does that number surprise you? Is this number at all reflected in your own congregations? ? I definitely believe that one who follows a life of spirituality will be happier, and I see this phenomenon within my congregation. A strong relationship with the Creator and a sense of shared fellowship and community with other believers can be a source of deep personal contentment.
May 2, 2001
Gary Moskowitz MAGNOLIA PARK -- Kyle FitzGerald, a senior at John Burroughs High School -- and a Catholic -- has strong feelings about prayer in public schools. "I'm against school prayer in all forms, including the Pledge of Allegiance," he said. "It goes against everything this country was founded on." FitzGerald and four of his fellow seniors from John Burroughs will attend a town hall meeting in Sacramento Thursday to tell elected officials exactly what the teens think about the role religion plays, or should play, in public schools.
March 25, 2006
It wasn't religion that drove John Muir Middle School teacher Barry Sarna to take his seventh-grade class to church on Tuesday ? it was education. The social studies teacher led the seventh-grade gifted and talented students on a walking tour of Burbank, stopping by Temple Emmanuel, St. Robert Bellarmine Catholic Church and First Methodist Church. The excursion gives students a chance to observe the similarities and the differences between the religions, explained Mary Lou Stefano, a Gifted and Talented Education program teacher who helps organize the excursion.