This blog is maintained on behalf of the Amy Foundation for the purpose of tracking the best Christian journalism we find on the Web. Our posts regularly identify those news articles or opinions in the mainstream media that represent good faith-based writing and example them for other Christian journalists.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Good article on going green …

Here is a attention-grabbing article in the Indianapolis Star by Robert King, titled “Going green for God” (9/25/07). King reports on the increasing trend found in Indianapolis churches advocating eco-friendly policies and instituting “green” programs.

He writes:
Preachers are buying hybrid cars and sermonizing about carbon footprints and sustainable living.

Small groups are forming in churches to encourage the faithful to recycle, spread the gospel of eating organic, cut pollution and hand out reusable shopping bags.
And some congregations, concerned that Styrofoam cups can spend an eternity at the bottom of a landfill, are vowing to banish them from the coffee hour in favor of bring-your-own mugs.

Increasingly, the people filling places of worship across the Indianapolis area are tackling environmental preservation in a way that was once the sole domain of tree-hugging political activists.
Read more>>
King’s article attracted me because I have some “go green” children in my own house. My early grade-school age daughters are very eco-conscience and have assumed the recycling responsibilities for our family (please, don’t look in the garage).

I wanted to see how Indianapolis clergy back up their earth-friendliness with theology. Unfortunately, the article was more of an interest story and didn’t do that far in depth. It also didn’t include any recognizable scripture, so it didn’t qualify for the Amy Writing Awards.

I’m going to write King and tell him I liked his piece and tell him about the Awards. Hopefully, he’ll keep writing on matters of faith.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

A time to blog ...

This week Thursday and Friday, I am at The Internet Ministry Conference, held on the campus of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and sponsored by The conference is open to everyone this year and not just Alliance Members.

I came to find out how to better promote the Amy Foundation blog and website. I also wanted to ply some of the speakers on how best to include digital submissions in the Amy Writing Award winner.
  • An aside, Jim Watkins presented on writing for the internet attention span in a presentation titled, "How To Hook Today's Online Users." He's a former Amy Writing Award winner. (I enjoyed his presentation and bought his latest book, Writers on Writing.)

But we cannot just throw open the contest to the “blogosphere” either. So I thought this was a good place to start.

I’ll try to share more later.

Monday, September 10, 2007

A Great Article on Mother Teresa that doesn't Qualify

Here is another great article about the Mother Teresa’s private struggles with doubt. Annamaria Longo’s piece, titled “Mother Teresa endured severe test of her faith,” published in the El Paso Times, is excellent opinion that uses Teresa’s doubt to encourage all of us to remain faithful when facing our own apprehensions.

Longo writes:
For the average person who believes in God, it's difficult to think of losing God.

I can't even fathom how hard it would be to be someone of great faith and humility and lose God.

Late last month, excerpts from a new book, "Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light," were released, and we learned a lot more about a woman whom many of us already regard as a saint.

We learned that after receiving a message from Jesus in 1946 that she be his light, Mother Teresa never heard from him again.

We learned that she wrote to her confessors of the "darkness" she felt.

We learned that her smile was a "mask," "a cloak that covers everything."

But most of all, we learned that she was far stronger and more faithful than we thought.
Read More>>
While Longe’s piece hits its mark in encouraging the faithful to remain just that, it doesn’t include a quote of identifiable scripture, so sadly it doesn’t qualify for the Amy Writing Awards.

I will send Longe and email encouraging her and sharing with her the qualifying requirement for the award.

Good job, Annamaria Longo!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Inspired by Teresa

I knew there would be a flurry of newspaper opinions about Mother Teresa’s doubts. After reviewing several of them, I found Sally Oakes’ article, titled “Honest doubt can help you grow in faith,” in The Citizen of Fayetteville, Georgia.

It's one of the best.

Oakes writes:
So Mother Teresa doubted! Wow. I found this out today while I was on the Internet. The woman whose faithfulness and dedication to God’s work inspired the world, no matter what the religion, had faith struggles. I don’t know why this surprised me so; everyone who seeks more than a cursory relationship with Christ has crises of faith. I guess it surprised me because she didn’t seem to be anything but an incredible woman of God and a tireless worker for his kingdom.
Read more>>
What I like about Oakes’ piece is how she interprets Mother Teresa’s struggles in terms we can all understand.

I wish I had more time to write about Oake’s exceptional piece. All I can say is that she does a good job working in God’s word towards the end and turning the story toward Jesus’ own crisis of faith.

This qualifies her for the Amy Writing Awards.

Good job, Sally Oakes!