Because my interest in Israel is not new, it won't surprise you to learn that quite a few years ago I read In the Land of Israel by Israel's best-known living author, Amos Oz (pictured here in a photo I borrowed from Tablet magazine).
Oz is a careful observer and a clear thinker. And he is unafraid both to love Israel and to criticize its leaders when, as they sometimes do, they make bad decisions, especially in relation to the on-going conflict with the Palestinians.
You will get a good sense of Oz and his thinking in this engaging interview with him just published by the Tablet online magazine.
Now that peace negotiations are resuming between Israel and the Palestinians, I find it encouraging to know that Oz believes peace, though it may not be at hand, is inevitable. Here's what he says:
"I believe that peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians is unavoidable. How soon it will happen, I don’t know. It’s difficult to be a prophet in the land of the prophets. It’s too much competition in the prophecy business around here. But it’s unavoidable, and it will come."
So have a look at the Oz interview, and if you haven't read any of his work, put it on your list.
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THE FAITH OF COLLEGE STUDENTS
So what's the religious makeup of American college students? Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., asked that very question in a national survey, and although I don't find the results surprising, those results should give traditional faith communities pause. Lots of college students seem to be moving away from traditional religions. The question those religions should be asking themselves is why and what might they do about it.
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P.S.: The Mainstream Coalition, a nonpartisan Johnson County, Kansas, group that promotes separation of church and state, will be celebrating its 20th anniversary with a free event that includes a sermon at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 8, at Village Presbyterian Church. For details, download this pdf flyer: Download Sermon Flyer8-1