April 21, 2013
Meditation of a Modern Believer By Christian Wiman Farrar, Straus & Giroux. $24. Reviewed by John Timpane Christian Wiman is a believer from a class of people who, in the minds of some, aren't supposed to believe. He's a poet - editor of Poetry magazine, a job he'll be leaving in June - a leading intellect, an artist. He's also facing cancer. He believes in God and, in My Bright Abyss , seeks to portray what that's like as of 2013 if you want to be an intelligent, aware, non-self-deluding, tough-minded, free-speaking person here and now. My Bright Abyss is a dark, mountainous work, part poet's notebook, part meditation, part illness journal.
April 17, 2013
A BOMBING in Boston on Patriots' Day. We don't know who did it yet, but does it really matter? The whole world seems to be about hate. I hate you because you don't look like me, or maybe you're a different color, or I don't like your sexual choices. Maybe I don't believe what you believe . Yes, it is a shame because religion does have a lot to do with the hate. I don't think that was what God intended. I just watched the series named "Bible. " It was the greatest series I have ever seen.
February 28, 2013 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Within hours of announcing he would run for a third term as Atlantic City's mayor, Lorenzo Langford on Wednesday was again embroiled in a long-distance altercation with Gov. Christie, who said the resort's leader has "no idea what he's doing" and runs the "most God-awful, wasteful" municipal government in the nation. Langford, 57, a Democrat who four years ago vowed that he had made his last run for mayor, fired back via e-mail that Christie's record as governor is "one of hypocrisy.
February 28, 2013 |
SHE WAS CALLED "Florence Nightingale. " And Lorraine Teresa Dade-Trumpler earned the title. Like the 19th-century English nurse, whose name has become synonymous with helping the ill and needy, Lorraine dedicated much of her life to easing the pain of the sick and shut-ins in her city. As a mother of Jones Temple Church of God in Christ, in North Philadelphia, of which her late husband was pastor, Lorraine spread her concern among children and adults, using her considerable cooking and baking skills to feed the hungry and taking flowers and gifts to those who needed a touch of love.
February 11, 2013
RE: "GUN VIOLENCE Debate Continues" (Stu Bykofsky column, Jan. 14). I am 78 years old and was raised during World War II. The column brought back vivid memories of my childhood. My dad had a .22-caliber rifle and he made a firing range in our cellar. He taught me how to fire it, take it apart and clean it. He would do the same for all the neighborhood kids with their parents' permission. He had a glass case where he kept the rifle, but never locked the case. All of us kids never went near the case without Dad's permission.
February 1, 2013
With Thursday's unveiling of corruption charges against nine current and former Traffic Court judges, the U.S. Justice Department has again proven it is Philadelphia's most effective good-government group. In a tone-deaf political environment where fixing traffic tickets is seen as no more harmful than double-parking, these charges bring hope. Maybe the people in charge of Traffic Court will hear the music and clean up a system that allows dangerous drivers to go unpunished just because they have friends in high places.
December 24, 2012
YOUR FAVORITE Columnist continues his tradition of an annual sit-down with God. YFC: Hello, Lord. God: What? You again? YFC: But - God: I'm kidding, kid. Take a load off. It seems like ages since I've seen you. YFC: I'm here every year around now. I was here last December. God: Get out - last year? My memory's slipping. But I remember your name, Jerry. YFC: It's Stu. God: You're not Blavat, the Geator with the Heater? YFC: 'Fraid not. God: I broke the mold when I made him. YFC: I'm more interested than you could ever imagine.
December 13, 2012 |
THERE WAS something about Catherine Leatherbury that drew people to her. Friends and neighbors would drop by her house in Overbrook just to be with her and soak up the warmth of her loving personality. Catherine devoted much of her life to caring for others, especially children, for whom she had a special place in her heart. Catherine LeVere-Leatherbury, a retired beautician, an active churchwoman who traveled to Europe and Africa on missionary excursions, an artist, a loving mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, died Dec. 3. She was 89 and was living in Dauphin, Pa., but had lived most of her life in Philadelphia.
November 19, 2012 |
After seeing Montgomery Theater's production of Sean Grennan's Making God Laugh , I think biblical standards of humor have declined a bit since Job's time. Grennan's play spans 30 years, beginning at Thanksgiving 1980 and progressing through Christmas 1990, New Year's Y2K, and Easter circa 2010. On each of these holidays, a trio of siblings learn the painful lesson that you can't go home again. The audience, watching the characters' lives move from youthful promise to adult discontent, gets beaten over the head with Grennan's continual insistence on his theme: If you want to make God laugh, create plans, so he can delight in frustrating them.
November 3, 2012 |
Mark St. Germain's two-character play, Freud's Last Session, ran for two years Off-Broadway and has made the rounds of regional theaters, winning prize after prize. The Arden's admirable production, directed by Ian Merrill Peakes, adds yet another debate drama about religion to the ever-lengthening roster so far this season. (Since the six shows I listed for my review of The Runner Stumbles on Oct. 22, we can add two more.) The debaters here are illustrious: Sigmund Freud (David Howey)