St- Louis Post-Dispatch

Jews and Jesus: A 'Spiritual Incursion' in St. Louis

The breaking news — only 2,000 years old — that Christians and Jews have vastly different views of Jesus made the front page of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch over the weekend (and was picked up nationally by Religion News Service this week). To be more specific, the Post-Dispatch featured a Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod congregation that seeks to convert Jews.

The newspaper’s main headline immediately cast the effort in a negative light:

Now, according to my online dictionary, incursion implies “a hostile entrance into or invasion of a place or territory.” Perhaps the headline is a major reason that the story upset so many folks in the LCMS. That, and the fact that the piece used phrases such as “targeted for conversion” to describe evangelism efforts by the Lutheran congregation.

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New to the Godbeat in St. Louis: Lilly Fowler

Congrats to @RNS contributor @LillyAFowler, succeeding @townsendreport as #religion writer at @STLtoday. Starts Jan. 20. #journalism @GetReligion Thanks much! Big @townsendreport shoes to fill. Will do my best.

— Lilly A. Fowler (@LillyAFowler) January 10, 2014

@LillyAFowler Congratulations, Lilly. You'll be great. Can't wait to read your stories. @GetReligion @mattfranck @stltoday @RNS

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So this renegade Polish priest and an Episcopal bishop walk into a bar ...

OK, not really. But you know how we’re always going on about stories that make people not affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church seem like they are, in fact, affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church? Well, here’s a great example of a religion journalist doing it right. Here’s the very top of St. Louis Post-Dispatch religion reporter Tim Townsend explaining part of a complicated scenario:

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God works through means: a story

I’m not sure if we looked at the media coverage of the “miracle priest” in Missouri. If you’re unfamiliar with the story, here’s an early Associated Press account of how a “mysterious priest” “suddenly appeared” and prayed over and anointed a badly injured car accident victim with oil. That piece is headlined “Priest comes out of nowhere to aid accident victim.” Here’s a News-Tribune (Jefferson City, Mo.) follow-up with more details.

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When lawsuits attack, Catholic edition

A few weeks ago, a lawsuit in Nevada made news because it revolved around alleged 3rd Amendment to the Constitution violations. Third Amendment Rights are invoked so rarely as to be the butt of jokes. See, for example, The Onion‘s “Third Amendments Rights Group Celebrates Another Successful Year.”

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News crisis: when people agree (Lutheran edition)

I’m in St. Louis this week at the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod’s 65th regular convention. The convention was largely peaceful and unified. And where it wasn’t, the issues were extremely important but fairly unique to the LCMS. I keep thinking how difficult it is to cover a convention such as this. Religion reporter Tim Townsend, of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, was at the convention.

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Halloween: trick or treat for Christians?

In yet another case of liberal bias by GetReligion, tmatt screamed “Boooo!” the other day at a one-sided story praising Halloween evangelism.

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