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Blog: Where We Write

Digital Saints

By Maria French

It was recently reported that Rome is preparing to give sainthood to a 15-year-old computer whizz who passed away from Leukemia in 2006.  He was a young boy who cataloged miracles online in service to Rome, or as the Pope has proclaimed, ‘in service of the gospel.’  He is being referred to as the digital saint.

In keeping with tradition, the person up for beautification needs to have been deceased for five years before proper inquiry can be made into their life, with one requirement being at least two miracles performed.  

But what constitutes a miracle? 

I came across a book this weekend in Shakespeare’s hometown of Stratford-upon-Avon.  It was everything you would expect an old bookshop to be, especially in the medieval town of such a literary colossus.  

“Saints of the Twentieth Century” recalling heroic tales of those who lived and died in the cause of something greater than themselves. ...

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More Than Lip Service: Is the Church Essential Work?

By Maria French

What makes the church more than a self-help option?  In the name of ‘essential work,’ what are the categories of community the church provides for its congregants that are integrally Christian?

I don’t ask these questions because I know the answers. 

I ask them because I think they must be asked and deeply considered. 

If you are keeping up on the news across the U.S. when it comes to church openings (or non-openings) you will find that many pastors have fought against the continued government mandates not to assemble for the purposes of worship.  There has been outrage, citing infringement on their first amendment rights, calling for churches to be seen as essential work as well as an invoking of mental health statistics among church goers who no longer have the comfort and community of their in-person Sunday gatherings.

There has been a distinct ‘us vs. them’ narrative when it comes to churches re-opening and...

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