Christian Ministry in a Digital Age

Scott Stiegemeyer, MDiv, MA

We live and work in the wonderful age of digital technology. Some of us can remember the analog days of having to drive to a library to find certain information which can now be miraculously accessed on a pocket computer. Libraries are still important, but no one can deny that computer and media innovations have changed our lives dramatically. The discussion lies in to what degree and where the boundaries should be set. Teenagers and adults spend hundreds of hours looking at their phones, updating their statuses on social media, and following the trends of their online friends. People feel pressure to remain constantly connected. After speaking with a group of California high school students about their own technology habits, one mentioned that FOMO (or the “Fear of Missing Out”) is a common experience for young people. This is only one side effect of our constant connection to our devices.

Death and the Church, Part IV

Robert C. Kurka, DMin

This final essay in my series on “Death and the Church,” was intended to be a summons to the local church to provide hospice training for its members. Clearly, there is hardly a better present-day ministry for a faith community to practice a Christian view of dying than a hospice program constructed on sound biblical premises. Certainly, an Intersections article needs to be written on the dignity and comfort that hospice provides to an incurable patient, not to mention the transformational effect such service brings to a team of caregivers. However, due in large part to an article in a recent Trinity Journal, this piece is taking another direction.

Bioethics in Transition: Why Academic Conferences Still Matter

Paige C. Cunningham, JD, PhD

“I was expecting something inspirational and devotional. This was egghead stuff, and not really Christian.” That is a rough paraphrase of a comment from one attendee at our recent summer conference. He may have been anticipating more of a focus on discipleship and inspiration for Christian living, which I enjoy—and would expectat meetings of organizations dedicated to encouraging Christian physicians and lawyers. Or, he may have thought that plenary speakers would frequently reference biblical texts as the primary content of their presentations, since it was a Christian bioethics conference.

Whatever the case might be, the criticism raises the question: why do we at CBHD bother with designing and hosting academic conferences? This can be illustrated by considering the theme of one of the Center’s recent conferences, Bioethics in Transition.

Celebrating WALL-E’s 10th Birthday

Michael Cox, PhD

For those with eyes to see, the movie WALL-E (Disney and Pixar, 2008) can be something of an apocalypse, revealing God’s Kingdom and stoking a Christian imagination. . .

As the plot unfolds, the audience is confronted with a subtle but profound question: Who is the human here? The answer is clear as WALL-E saves humankind from an entertainment-centered, sedentary existence. But this post-apocalyptic flick can reveal something to us about what it means to flourish as humans—and maybe just save us from ourselves.