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No Prosperity Gospel
On Kwon Jeong-saeng’s “The Church I Dreamed Of,” Autumn 2014: This article could have been written for the churches in the USA. We have come so far from the simplicity of worship without complication or reservation. Money has become all-consuming, and even the gospel has been perverted to encourage us to give with the promise of returned wealth – what a lie. Trisha Freitag
Finding God in Creation
On Claudio Oliver’s “Becoming a Rooted Church,” Spring 2015: I live in the United States, but part of my family lives in Brazil, which holds a special place in my heart. Now I’m seventy-five, and I realize that it took me much longer to hear the Message that you have heard. We live here with an organic garden and a tribe of abandoned dogs and cats. We feel God’s presence as we simply focus on the animals and our visitors, trying to keep our minds open. God bless you. Patricia Silva
John Muir’s Bible
On Calvin B. DeWitt’s “The Psalmic Soundtrack of John Muir,” Spring 2015: Thanks, Dr. DeWitt! In college I studied the religion of John Muir. This article, with its copious quotes, was not only a reminder of that semester but also a worshipful experience. Dean Van Farowe
Can Wars Be Just?
On Ron Sider’s “Does ISIS Prove Nonviolence Wrong?”, Winter 2015: It’s hard for me to take the Just War theory seriously. Show me one Christian denomination that is capable of applying it. It may be a great discussion topic for theologians, but unless there is a plan of implementation it’s not serious. Can you imagine a church saying, “This is not a just war by our criteria; therefore we call on all members to refrain from any form of participation in it, including our active military members, since participating in an unjust war is tantamount to committing murder?” Steve Dintaman
We need to acknowledge right off the bat that the empire (the USA and its allies) has actively supported the arming and training of extremist (Wahhabi) Muslims since 1979. This strategy began in Afghanistan and has been used since in other countries. To stop ISIS, we must confront the possibility that it is the US government and its allies that are at the root of terror. No matter what the cause of violence, Jesus-followers betray the radical core of the gospel when they take on the task of solving these problems within imperial categories of thought. Berry Friesen
Steering the Plough
On Plough’s Spring 2015 issue: You asked for feedback on the magazine’s design. I noticed that in the last issue there seemed to be an emphasis on space and graphics, or was it bigger print size? [Ed.: Yes.] My concern is that Plough is not a pretty coffee table magazine, but a magazine that offers spiritual sustenance. The reader needs articles of a reasonable length with religious, theological, and inspirational substance. Small articles have their place, but we need solid food for thought as well. Thanks for a truly unique magazine. Bob Pounder
This new Plough Quarterly is simply amazing. There’s an authentic ecumenical spirit that flickers through the pages. Katie Thamer Treherne
As a subscriber in Cuba, I agree that Plough truly is “much more than just a magazine.” Never lose the Christocentric voice that you represent. Rafael Godínez Soler