Who Will Cry For a Witch? Lilith Saintcrow of God and Consequences reveals, with the help of the Indianapolis Star, an excellent religion story — a judge forbidding Wiccan parents from teaching their kids their religion because it’s not “mainstream” — and Jason Pitzl-Waters of Wildhunt demands to know why God bloggers, notoriously obsessed with freedom of religion, don’t care about witches. Good question.
Well, Isn’t That Nice? Blogger Too Beautiful catches an important omission in a Fort Worth Star-Telegram profile of controversial Bush judicial nominee Priscilla Owen. In what appears to be an attempt to humanize the widely-feared nominee, reporter Dave Montgomery notes Owens’ involvement in her church’s Sunday school. Fine. But should Montgomery have also noted that the church is as much in the fray as Owens? Too Beautiful did his homework and discovered that Owens’ congregation left the Episcopal Church last year in protest of homosexual ordination. Seems like a salient detail, and one that the paper overlooked not because they were whitewashing it, but because reporters and editors likely file “church” under one catchall, feel-good category.
Don’t Be Weird. Michael Roberts of Denver’s Westword picks up on some of the media aftermath of my Harper’s feature on New Life Church in Colorado. But “aftermath” isn’t quite the right word — despite Pastor Ted Haggard’s disavowals of his importance, he’s more than happy to welcome Tom Brokaw, Barbara Walters, and Dateline to his Colorado Springs megachurch — and he’ll even tailor his services for public consumption. Roberts reports on a memo from Pastor Ted to his congregation urging them to not act “weird” — i.e., worship as they’re accustomed to — or talk about “the devil” when the cameras are rolling. Blogger Non Prophet put the memo online. For full effect, click through to the actual text, complete with Pastor Ted’s latest foreign policy efforts in Israel.