By shifting our priorities and forcing us to get creative, the pandemic has had a lasting effect on church leadership. As one pastor reflected, “Jesus is replacing my desire to make people run at the speed of my vision with a desire to walk at the pace of a wounded community.”
New research has traced the outbreak of the Black Plague in the 1330s to a Christian community in current-day Kyrgyzstan. These believers also left us a record of what they thought we should know about their experience of the plague.
As the media discourse shifts from empty vanity to active hostility, the latest news cycle around Kanye West reflects some of the worst “shock culture” sensibilities we see among evangelicals.
On the Where Ya From podcast: A former DC police officer shares how he asked God to give him a different perspective on his work in law enforcement.
Behind the story
From Daniel Silliman: You may remember that when COVID-19 cases were just starting to sweep across the US in 2020, there were these organized and unorganized efforts to get people to keep diaries. Write it down, people said. Record the experience for history.
But the truth is that most of the documentation of our experience—even in times we can’t seem to stop calling “unprecedented”—are very ephemeral. Most of it disappears. Most is lost to decay and memory.
So if you do leave something to history, it should say what you want to say and what you think is important. That’s what I found so moving about this reporting from CT editor Susan Mettes about new research on early victims of the Black Death. These Syriac Christians didn’t keep any diaries that we know of. But they found a way to say something important, even 700 years later.
In other news
Scammers are pretending to sell the info of Southern Baptist Convention meeting attendees. (They don’t actually have that data. It’s a scam.)
According to a recent court ruling, requiring a St. Louis pastor to get a permit to distribute bologna sandwiches to the homeless is not a violation of free speech.