Generous Orthodoxy  




Wednesday, May 13, 2015

American Christianity in decline: Wisdom from the Inklings

There will be much wringing of hands about the new poll showing that the number of people calling themselves Christians in America is in steep decline, especially among young adults. Here is the link to a Times article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/12/upshot/big-drop-in-share-of-americans-calling-themselves-christian.html?ref=todayspaper&_r=0&abt=0002&abg=1

This is indeed cause for concern. But not despair. Philip Zeigler, professor of theology at Aberdeen, just sent me this wonderful article about the Inklings (C. S. Lewis, Tolkien, etc.) in which there is a quotation from Lewis that strikes me as precisely the thing we need to know and remember:
Lewis himself warned against making too much of Oxford’s Christian revival, pointing out in a 1946 article for The Cherwell that it could not be counted on to last: "Sooner or later it must lose the public ear; in a place like Oxford such changes are extraordinarily rapid. … Whatever in our present success mere Fashion has given us, mere Fashion will presently withdraw. The real conversions will remain: but nothing else will."
 The whole article, from The Chronicle of Higher Education, is well worth reading in toto:

 http://chronicle.com/article/Oxfords-Influential-Inklings/229967/



Monday, May 11, 2015

The nail salon scandal: investigative journalists doing God's work

Here is a heartening story from the New York Times. I am no fan of our governor, Andrew Cuomo, but this time he really pulled through with the right moves. Huge numbers of women go to the nail salons--I certainly do--but I had absolutely no idea about their pernicious hidden practices. Here is the article about Cuomo's actions:

http://tinyurl.com/kf95dqm

There are two original articles, one of them about the manicurists being cheated out of their earnings, and the second one about the dangers posed to their health by the chemicals. You can access these by clicking on the links supplied in the article about Cuomo's response. I wouldn't be surprised if they win a Pulitzer. This is the sort of journalism that costs the Times a great deal of money. It must have taken many months to put together. It is not easy to get Asian women on the low rungs to talk, since many of them are accustomed to being meek and submissive.

It is also interesting to read how the Koreans impose an ethnic hierarchy on those below. All things considered, maybe best to go to an all-Korean salon for your own peace of mind...but then what about the abuse of the Vietnamese, the Hispanics, etc. below them? This expose should help, especially with the six-language interviewing process that Cuomo has set up.