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Because the United States has such deep and important roots in Christianity, it is always going to be difficult to separate the two. One can make an argument that the United States is the most Christian nation on earth. (A possible exception is the Vatican.) One can also make an argument tha…

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We have been arguing with each other from the beginning. “That woman you gave me offered me the fruit and I ate it.” “Well, that serpent you let loose in the garden tricked me.” Cain, jealous of his brother, clouted Abel on the head with a rock and killed him. Sarah and Hagar. Jacob and Esau…

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This may be a minor blip and we may soon forget, but make no mistake, we are changed. We do not know how we are changed yet, but we are. I recall a pleasant lunch my wife and I had several years ago in Milano, Italy. We were with two widows old enough to be our grandmothers. When we finished…

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When people will not listen to what we are saying, we are left with no choice but to act. This is at the root of most massive acts of civil disobedience. Acting is also generally riskier than writing or speaking - although those can get us into trouble as well. We may well remember famous wo…

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I've written before that I believe most people can get along with each other when we believe there is enough for everyone.

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Sunday is Mother's Day, perhaps the most sentimental of all secular days that has been allowed to leak into most of our churches. So much so that some advertise special services to celebrate moms.

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I have heard sincere apologies given by public figures, but I've rarely witnessed an apology accompanied by a change in attitude or behavior, otherwise known as repentance.

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It's no secret that we in the U.S. are becoming more neurotic, anxious, and depressed. I can't help but think it might have something to do with the healthy habit of "questioning everything" spinning out of control.

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If there's one thing I like in life it's stability. That's not the same as being inert. Nor does it mean I don't like new things or adventure.

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One of the funniest selling points I see on TV -- when I watch shows with ads -- is the rush delivery that is offered on a product that I did not know existed, much less needed only 60 seconds earlier.

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My best man moved away. I moved across the ocean -- when it was still expensive to make a transatlantic phone call and email had not quite arrived.

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During the first couple of weeks each year, I spend time reflecting. It's a good time to reset some goals and reorganize priorities. In reality, very little changes during these times.

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The time of year from Thanksgiving until Epiphany is wonderful. During that time, we turn the corner from shorter days to longer ones.

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I have heard it said that it is not a good thing to mix religion with politics. The only problem with that is its impossibility. We may mean different things when we say it but, upon reflection, we know the two are inextricably locked together. What I attempt to do personally is not allow pa…

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It would be foolish to compare today with the devastation wrought by the plague of the 14th century. What today we call the “black death.” Most of the destruction happened within a few years, but it recurred for at least another five decades after that. It took England 150 years to regain it…

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• West Kentucky Christian Alliance, Memorial Day Christian service, 5 p.m. Monday, McCracken County Courthouse lawn. Bring a chair. All CDC regulations will be enforced. Information: 270-994-3230.

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Eighty-seven years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Abraham Lincoln delivered perhaps the most famous speech in American History. In its text is the ironic line, “the world will little note, nor long remember what we say here.” This is, of course the Gettysburg Address, …

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With my schedule disrupted like most of us, I decided to take the plunge and do something I have been putting off for years. You got it. I finally picked up “War and Peace.” It is my nighttime reading just before I go to bed, so it may yet take me a while to get through it. Yep. Just for fun…

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A bubbling stream, a few animals around, a partly cloudy sky, about 70 degrees and a wisp of a breeze — hopefully right after a rain. The birds are singing and there are absolutely no bugs anywhere. It is quiet. That poster says Psalm 23. (We forget about “the valley of the shadow of death,”…

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There is no doubt that our current circumstances have had various impacts on us. Some are busier than ever, others are working in different locations, and yet others are struggling and out of work completely. We are all concerned about different things even though the cause is the same.

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On the one hand, everyone needs to do their part and take care of themselves. On the other hand, everyone needs to look after their neighbor and take care of each other. Both of these statements are perfectly true, but if one is taken on its own without the other life would become unbalanced…

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There is an elephant in every room of our lives. It is a big bull elephant. Rather than being left alone and ignored, he is raging through the house out of control and then going after the neighbors. There is no one left unaffected, regardless of faith, work status or income. It takes some d…

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What a strange Lenten and Passover season we are finishing. I hope never to experience one like it again. We are away from our normal gatherings at this time of year. However, this one is perhaps more like those original events than any we will experience. Each family making its own preparat…

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I want to thank all of you who are reading each week. I am encouraged by the notes and comments that you occasionally send my way, even the ones that correct or challenge from time to time.

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This is how this always happens. This is how disaster overtakes us. We can never see it coming. We have learned to avert, be prepared, and predict a lot of things over the past centuries. But we are still surprised every 10 or 15 years or so by a disease, an attack, greed, or some other some…

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This may be a minor blip and we may soon forget, but make no mistake, we are changed. We do not know how we are changed yet, but we are. I recall a pleasant lunch my wife and I had several years ago in Milano, Italy. We were with two widows old enough to be our grandmothers. When we finished…

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Concert/MusicalsTrace Creek Baptist Church, 3577 Ky. 131, will present “The Promise 2020” at 7 p.m. April 3 and 10; at 2 and 7 p.m. April 4 and 11; and at 6 p.m. Easter Sunday, April 12. Doors open one hour before start time. There is no charge for admission. Reserved seating is available fo…

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What we practice when life is calm and predictable will present itself when life becomes more turbulent and less predictable. It is that spiritual muscle memory that we should be developing in our lives for when trouble rolls in and decides to stay for a while. The same applies to us physica…

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One of my favorite stories about Jesus and his disciples begins with a question about who to blame. Jesus walked by a blind man and those following him asked, “Teacher, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” (John 9:2, RSV). Jesus immediately turned from assigning blam…

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How could something so small cause so much trouble? How could something we can't see wreak so much havoc?

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When people will not listen to what we are saying, we are left with no choice but to act. This is at the root of most massive acts of civil disobedience. Acting is also generally riskier than writing or speaking - although those can get us into trouble as well. We may well remember famous wo…

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NEW YORK -- It has become standard practice for U.S. corporations to assure employees of support regardless of their race, gender or sexual orientation. There's now an intensifying push to ensure that companies are similarly supportive and inclusive when it comes to employees' religious beliefs.

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I refuse to pick a side and I also refuse to be neutral. Watching the State of the Union address was like watching some sort of combination of "Saturday Night Live" and "Madam Secretary." It was part drama and part comedy. This is not intended to be disrespectful. It is how I felt as I was w…

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MINNEAPOLIS -- In Midwestern boots or bare feet in sandals, the faithful walked in procession down a snow-covered street here, keeping the rhythm of festive music and carrying paintings of St. Paul, the patron saint of their hometown of Axochiapan, Mexico.

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LONSDALE, Minn. -- A Minnesota Roman Catholic priest apologized Wednesday for saying in a sermon that Islam was "the greatest threat in the world" to the United States and Christianity.

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I love hearing stories, and I love telling them to anyone who will listen. Even the same story told over again continues to have fresh meaning, because every time it is told it is spoken into a fresh context. Events, location, people present, the emotion in the room and the purpose of tellin…

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I find that it takes effort to keep even the good practices of my life from skidding off the road on one side or the other. Most self-examining people take time for reflection or meditation on a regular basis. It is a healthy practice, regardless of one's faith -- or lack thereof.

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Every year on this weekend I attempt to connect my thoughts here to Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It is hard because I am the recipient of "white privilege." However I believe that a thing being difficult to write about is one of the best reasons to do so. Even if it exposes ignorance and blin…

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Hypocrite alert! This is very much a do as I say and not as I do column. I think it is the nature of desperately wanting human beings to focus on those things that are inclusive rather than exclusive. It is also important to understand the focusing on inclusive does not eliminate boundaries.…

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VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis cautiously waded back into the crowds on Wednesday after video of him swatting away the hand of a pilgrim who grabbed him went viral and sparked a papal apology.

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VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis is pinning much of his hopes for a more peaceful world in the new year on women, saying violence against them is akin to profaning God and calling for them to be increasingly involved in making major decisions.

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LEXINGTON -- After winning her first professional fight in the first round, there's no denying that Lexington boxer Samantha "Sammy" Kinchen has power in the ring. The trick, her coach says, is training her to rein in that power.

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I was having a conversation many years ago with a neighbor in England. At some point he said, "The difference between the English and Americans is that you still believe in your flag and we don't." I was not sure exactly what he meant by that, or even if it is accurate but recent events have…

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OPELIKA, Ala. -- An Alabama woman who survived a deadly tornado that blew down most of her home is getting a new place to live thanks to an aid group.

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A couple of months ago, my son and I stumbled into a window of opportunity to clear some trees, a dead limb about 20 feet off the ground, and some underbrush in our backyard. I had been looking for a window and on that day it happened. I got the ladder, a harness, ropes, chains, rakes, limb …

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CHICOPEE, Mass. -- More than a century ago, waves of Catholic immigrants from Ireland, Poland and Quebec settled in Chicopee and other western Massachusetts mill towns, helping build churches, rectories and schools to accommodate their faith. Today the priests leading those churches are unde…

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There are times when waiting for someone else is considered polite, but for most of life it is better to go first. It takes courage, experience, and character to go first most of the time. Good leaders know this.