The Qur’an gives us insight into the Muslim world—as well as the Christian faith

My colleague Fran Leap, a thoughtful and wise explorer of intellect and the human heart as related to the divine, describes her experience as a Christian coming to know a very different holy text– one that comes from an aural rather than scriptural tradition. The Qur’an longs to convince its hearers of the fragile and temporary nature of human life on earth, and of the eternal significance of the life…

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Relative Number of Tweets containing the terms “church” or “beer” aggregated to the county level, June 22-28, 2012

But what about tweets containing “church” AND “beer”? So in honor of the 4th of July, we selected all geotagged tweets[1] sent within the continental US between June 22 and June 28 (about 10 million in total) and extracted all tweets containing the word “church” (17,686 tweets of which half originated on Sunday) or “beer” (14,405 tweets which are much more evenly distributed throughout the week). See below for more…

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Automata and Mimesis on the Stage of Theatre History (Some Notes)

For me, the July 4 weekend marks the halfway point for the summer — if it’s not the chronological center of the summer, it is the time when I look at the number of weeks before fall classes start, and look at the list of things I had hoped to accomplish for the summer, and reassess. I’m doing great on the family time, and the lawn looks about as good…

York Crucifixion of Christ (Toronto, 1977) 2 of 4

Christ willingly stretches himself down on the cross. Surprised, one of the soldiers observes: “Behold, himself has laid him down,/and bent his back unto this tree.” From one of the first web pages I created, for an academic article about a computer simulation of the epic medieval Christian pageant the York Corpus Christi Cycle. The tiny, grainy video clips were cutting-edge multimedia back in 1997.  via York Crucifixion of Christ…

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Lesson Plans: Activities Related to Stage Musical & Film — Jerz’s Literacy Weblog

My talented wife wrote this lesson plan, in honor of our local performing arts school (Stage Right! Greensburg)’s production of Joseph this weekend. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tim Rice, draws its story from the (Old Testament) book of Genesis: Jacob gives his favorite son, Joseph, a gloriously-colored coat, which incites the jealousy of the other 11 sons.  Eventually, when…

Dolores Hart, who kissed Elvis Presley, is now a nun in Oscar-nominated documentary

Dolores Hart kissed Elvis Presley in her first film, starred in nine more movies within six years, and then gave it all up to become a nun. On Sunday, she returns to Hollywood to attend the Academy Awards, where a new film about her is up for best documentary short. via Dolores Hart, who kissed Elvis Presley, is now a nun in Oscar-nominated documentary  – NY Daily News.

And With Your Spirit

My daughter was amused that, even with a cheat sheet in my hand, I automatically responded to “Peace be with you” with the traditional “And also with you,” every time this Sunday, instead of the new translation “And with your spirit.” Not once did I get it right.

Lessons from “It’s a Wonderful Life”

My talented wife has written a set of lesson plans for It’s a Wonderful Life, the immediate occasion being our local professional theatre company’s production of the musical version. (See Stage Right Greensburg calendar.) Based on Philip van Doren Stern’s story “The Greatest Gift” (1943), Frank Capra’s 1946 film It’s a Wonderful Life celebrates the life of George Bailey, a good-hearted man who once dreamed of getting a college degree,…