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Web Exclusive: A Conversation with John Terpstra

By Mary Kenagy Mitchell Interview

John Terpstra has been in church since before he was born. “I have heard everything there is to say about the place, for and against; both its necessity and its redundancy. Have felt it all, in my bones,” he writes.  The fall issue of Image includes his essay about church, titled “Skin Boat: Acts of…

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Young-Adult Fiction Comes of Age

By Hannah Faith Notess Book Review

The Possibilities of Sainthood by Donna Freitas (Farrar Strauss Giroux, 2008) Dark Sons by Nikki Grimes (Hyperion, 2005) Trouble by Gary Schmidt (Clarion Books, 2008) Once Was Lost by Sara Zarr (Little, Brown, 2009) AS A TEENAGER, I was given several novels in a series of inspirational young-adult (YA) books. On their pastel covers, modestly sweatshirted girls with big hair and…

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Skin Boat

By John Terpstra Essay

Skin Boat: Acts of Faith and Other Navigations The following essay is excerpted from a new book of the same title from Gaspereau Press (www.Gaspereau.com).   TODAY I believe in God. A visiting friend and I were listening to a jazz trio one Sunday morning in an Anglican church. The trio led off with a…

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The Superhero and His People

By Santiago Ramos Essay

I want a hero: an uncommon want, When every year and month sends forth a new one, Till, after cloying the gazettes with cant, The age discovers he is not the true one ——————Lord Byron, Don Juan, Canto the First A SUPERHERO MOVIE is foremost an entertainment, often kitschy, sometimes trashy, but regardless, it is…

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The Jewel

By Richard Jones Poetry

I like this moment when there is nothing more I need to do, when I have emptied everything on the counter— eggs, bread, apples, and some chocolate I will give my children after homework— and I am free to study the checkout lady’s red face ever so slightly gasping for air, the quick hands of…

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Window

By Rod Jellema Poetry

He looks skyward and sees he forgot to snap off the lamp in his upstairs study. He’d call it aging, but aging is not, he tells himself, a downward slope. He hadn’t climbed to get here. His life isn’t a hill. It’s more like a long sleep, with tens of thousands of dreams, dreams of…

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Automat

By Rod Jellema Poetry

Edward Hopper, oil on canvas, 1927 Nothing automatic or newly modern here, nothing springs open to dispense a bowl of hot soup or a cool slice of pie in exchange for coins. But neither will a waiter intrude. The young woman sits alone, fashionably dressed and without expectation. Surely someone said he would meet her,…

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Why Sacred Music Endures

By James MacMillan Essay

The following lecture was originally delivered in London in October 2008, marking the thirtieth anniversary of the Sandford St. Martin Trust, which promotes excellence in religious media programming in the U.K. It was later broadcast on BBC Radio. HISTORY HAS an annoying habit of sneaking up and mugging the certain and the convinced. In European…

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In Between

By Robert Cording Poetry

They had reasons to believe in God. Miracles helped. And their aftereffects must have lingered for a time, but then, the disciples needed to start walking again, one town to another, nothing in between but the hot, dusty road and a desert of sand and rock where not one thing required a moment’s appreciation. Just…

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Reading George Herbert

By Robert Cording Poetry

All he ever wanted was to disappear. But he kept coming upon himself as if he were a character in a story who, despite his best efforts to understand, remained inscrutable. How he tried to keep straight the difference between who the author said he was and who he thought he was. He told himself…

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