Kazan Redux: Elia Kazan’s Seventeenth Film: “The Arrangement”

Today, as part of our “Kazan Redux” series, we’re going to re-review director Elia Kazan’s seventeenth film, “The Arrangement.” The review below was first posted on November 13, 2017 and has been slightly revised.


The Arrangement
Directed by Elia Kazan and featuring Kirk Douglas, Faye Dunaway, Deborah Kerr, and Richard Boone
Warner Bros., 1969, 125 minutes

4 Stars

Following the release of his previous film, “America America” (1963), director Elia Kazan turned to writing fiction. His semi-autobiographical novel, “The Arrangement,” was surprisingly the highest-selling fictional work of the year when it was published in 1967. Kazan adapted the novel to the screen two years later.


Middle-aged Eddie Anderson (Kirk Douglas) is a successful advertising executive living a very comfortable, upper middle-class lifestyle with his wife, Florence (Deborah Kerr), in a sprawling Southern California home complete with servants and an in-ground pool. But Eddie secretly despises the “arrangements” and the compromises he’s made in his life and unsuccessfully attempts suicide on the highway. While convalescing, Eddie has flashbacks of his unsatisfying career and of the young, outspoken, co-worker, Gwen (Faye Dunaway), who goaded him to follow his own desires and whom he partnered with in an extramarital affair. Following his recovery, Eddie reluctantly returns to the job he hates, but finds he cannot tolerate it and surrealistically buzzes the company office tower in his private plane as his final parting shot.

As Florence wonders WHAT is going on with her suddenly unhinged husband, Eddie is summoned to New York City to be with his ailing father (Richard Boone). He uses the opportunity to visit Gwen, who had moved to the Big Apple primarily to get away from the conflicted Eddie. Although Gwen has a new boyfriend, Eddie is undeterred. Meanwhile, Florence chases Eddie to New York to keep close tabs on her increasingly unpredictable husband.

Eddie sneaks his father out of the hospital in the middle of the night according to his wishes and brings him back to the old family homestead. The old Greek is suffering from dementia and insists Eddie take him to the bank for a loan to restart his oriental rug business. At the house, Eddie has painful childhood flashbacks of his domineering and abusive father.

After the family absconds with the father and commits him to a nursing home, Eddie walks in on a meeting with Florence and her lawyer, Arthur (Hume Cronyn), as they draw up divorce papers. Eddie is arrested after setting fire to the old family home (symbolizing the extirpation of the painful childhood memories). Eddie is subsequently committed to a mental institution where he’s satisfied to stay, but Gwen prods him into leaving and moving forward with his life. The father dies and the family gathers at the cemetery; Eddie and Gwen are together while Frances appears to have found a new partner and provider in Arthur.


While the film is not completely autobiographical, it does draw very heavily on the director’s life experiences. Kazan later wrote extensively on his troubled relationships with his father, his first wife, Molly Thatcher, and his spirited mistress and second wife, actress Barbara Loden. He had also experienced a bit of a personal, water-shed crisis after becoming extremely dissatisfied with his role as a theatrical director while desiring to be a writer.

Kazan admitted later that alpha-dog, Kirk Douglas, was entirely wrong for the role of troubled Eddie. His take-charge personality could not be concealed from the camera. Dunaway is bit over-dramatic as the strong-willed mistress. Kazan originally envisioned Barbara Loden playing the part of Gwen, which would have equated to the former-mistress-turned-wife portraying herself. Boone is spot-on as the overbearing father and Kerr is okay as the painfully long-suffering wife.

Kazan employs a number of questionable techniques in this film which serve as distractions. There’s some cartoonish “Ka-pow” graphics straight out of the then-popular Batman television show. The conflicted Eddie is made to debate his successful and sales savvy alter-ego within the same scene and adult Eddie is featured as an in-frame observer in flashbacks to his youth. There’s plenty of additional flashy editing that was “cutting edge” hip in the late 60s.

“The Arrangement” was not well-received by the public. Kazan later blamed the film’s failure on some “missing key elements” from the novel that had to be left out of the script for brevity’s sake. Excuses aside, this film has only a few redeeming qualities, but Kazan fans will appreciate the many references to his own personal life, which he would later elaborate on in great detail in his fascinatingly candid 1988 autobiography. “The Arrangement” was one of the first films dealing with “finding one’s true path,” a theme that would later preoccupy Hollywood and the culture in general. The 2007 DVD offers no commentary although the trailer and a short but interesting promotional documentary are included.

Additional thoughts from a believer

We’re all aware of the fabled, “mid-life crisis.” We’ve seen others go through it to some degree and, if we’re old enough, we’ve seen it in ourselves. A person reaches their forties or fifties and is confronted with their mortality. They ask themselves, “Is this all there is to life?” After working hard for so many years to please others by conforming to family or societal expectations, some resolve to please only themselves with the remaining time they have. Sometimes they go to sadly comical, stereotypical extremes, like the 55-year-old guy who buys a high-performance, red convertible sports car and dumps his wife for a 30-year-old girlfriend.

The protagonist in “The Arrangement” is suffering through a “mid-life crisis” on steroids. Will he find true and lasting happiness and fulfillment as a struggling writer living with his former mistress? Methinks not. Much of “The Arrangement” reminds me of the Book of Ecclesiastes. “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity” (1:1-2). Without Jesus Christ as your Savior, life is empty, life is meaningless, life is hopeless. Accept Christ as your Savior. Christ can save you from the coming judgement for your sin and give your life everlasting meaning in Him.

Kazan went on to write five more novels, but none would reach even a fraction of the popularity of “The Arrangement.” He began divorce proceedings against Loden in 1978, but dropped the suit when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Lodan succumbed to liver cancer in 1980. Kazan’s “post-arrangement” life was as unfulfilling as what preceded it.

The runway is definitely in sight, my friends. There’s only two more Kazan films left to re-review.

Trivia: “The Arrangement” is actually something of a sequel to “America America.” Eddie is the nephew of the protagonist of the 1963 film, Stavros Topouzoglou. In “The Arrangement,” the much-older Stavros is shown covetously eyeing the shoes of his dying brother, eliciting memories of the importance of a pair of shoes in the earlier film. Grizzled actor, Richard Boone, who portrayed Douglas’ father in the film, was actually six-months younger than his co-star.

Truth from Arkansas! Sunday Sermon Series, #90

It’s Two-fer-Tuesday, my friends, which means two new sermons from the brethren down in Arkansas.

First, we have missionary Adolfo Gonzalez preaching at Northern Hills Baptist Church in Texarkana from Ezekiel 37:4 on “God’s Call for Each of Us.”

Next, we have Pastor Cody Andrews of Holly Springs Missionary Baptist Church in Star City, preaching from Joshua 6:1-21 on “How To Make Your Walls Fall”

Both of these sermons were delivered on Sunday, June 13th.

Brother Adolfo Gonzalez – God’s Call for Each of Us

Pastor Cody Andrews – How to Make Your Walls Fall

Armstrong on Roman Catholicism and an ecumenical Judas in the making

A View of Rome: A Guide to Understanding the Beliefs and Practices of Roman Catholics
By John H. Armstrong
Moody Press, 1995, 144 pp.

4 Stars

Chuck Colson (1931-2012) was infamous for being President Richard Nixon’s “hit man” and was sent to prison in 1974 for his efforts to cover-up the Watergate break-in. Prior to his imprisonment, Colson had read C.S. Lewis’ “Mere Christianity” (see my unfavorable review here) and professed to have trusted in Jesus Christ as Savior. After his release, Colson became involved in several “ministries,” including leading an effort to forge an ecumenical evangelical-Roman Catholic initiative. Colson’s wife was a Roman Catholic and Colson regularly attended mass with her. In the early-1990s, Colson partnered with Catholic priest, Richard John Neuhaus in creating the Evangelicals and Catholics Together (ECT) ecumenical initiative that fully embraced Roman Catholicism as a Christian entity. Many prominent evangelicals signed ECT’s first declaration in 1994. However, many other evangelical leaders, including John Armstrong, objected to ECT, citing the irreconcilable doctrinal differences between Gospel Christianity and the RCC.

In this short book published one year after the launch of ECT, former-pastor and professor, Armstrong, delves into church history and deconstructs the rise of Roman Catholicism and its subversion of the Gospel of grace. Armstrong cites the Reformation as a Holy Spirit-led movement to recover the genuine Gospel. The author examines the doctrinal differences between Gospel Christianity and Catholicism, including the prime difference; the opposing views on justification. Roman Catholics believe they are justified by sacramental grace and merit while evangelicals believe they are justified solely by the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ imputed to them at the moment they accepted Christ as Savior by faith alone. Armstrong clearly demonstrates that Colson’s and Lewis’ “mere (c)hristianity” ecumenism leapfrogs doctrinal and spiritual realities that cannot be reconciled.

This book is a good primer for evangelicals and Catholics who desire to understand what divides them. However, I do have a qualifier. Armstrong’s approach is irenic in tone, even too irenic in my estimation. Armstrong encourages “dialogue” between Catholics and evangelicals in the quest for “better understanding” and sanctions “co-belligerency” in the culture battles against rising secularism. Such accommodation is a slippery slope that dangerously leads to the type of compromise and betrayal of the Gospel that is at the core of Chuck Colson’s ECT.


  • The Holy Catholic Church
  • The Dark Ages
  • The Great Evangelical Recovery
  • A Fallen Church
  • The Central Mystery of the Christian Faith?
  • Seven Sacraments?
  • Who Really Speaks for God?
  • Spiritual Life and Devotion
  • Death and Life to Come
  • The Present Hour
  • Is “Evangelical” Really Enough?
  • Recovering True Evangelicalism

Postscript: I take no pleasure in saying I told you so in this case, but Armstrong’s slippery slope clearly led to a fall off the cliff. His website states that “in the fall of 2018 (Armstrong’s) ACTS3 Network became The Initiative, an intentional missional and ecumenical community designed for assisting in the healing of the North American church. The Initiative is made up of pastors and lay members from all three major Christian traditions: Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox.” There are many other appeals to full-blown ecumenism with Rome scattered throughout the website. Armstrong became the Colson Judas he warned against. Open the door to false gospels, even just a crack, and the wolves will devour you.

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 6/27/21

The “wafer wars” continue to heat up. Two weeks after the U.S. Catholic bishops voted to formulate guidelines denying the Jesus wafer to high-profile Catholic politicians like President Joe Biden who support pro-abortion legislation, reaction is off the charts. Cardinal Wilton Gregory of Washington D.C. has already announced he won’t deny Biden the Jesus wafer. The newly-appointed bishop of Biden’s home-diocese of Wilmington, Delaware, William Koenig, has not said whether he will deny Biden the Jesus wafer, although it’s certain that his promotion by pope Francis was contingent on being on the progressive side of the “wafer wars.” The U.S. bishops’ decision is galvanizing advocates on both sides of the debate and will further widen the growing rift between conservatives and progressives within the RCC. The 56% of U.S. Catholics who believe abortion should be legal in all or most cases according to recent surveys will certainly personalize the bishops’ crusade against Biden. Please note that the genuine Gospel of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone is not embraced by either conservative or progressive Catholics.

Franciscan friar and priest, Junipero Serra, oversaw the promulgation of Roman Catholicism’s false gospel throughout early-California. He was also an official inquisitor and mandated physical punishment and even torture in cases of native peoples who did not conform to the Catholic rules and regulations propagated by the Franciscan missionaries.

The SBC should have kicked out Saddleback decades ago for Rick Warren’s enthusiastic embrace of the Roman Catholic church and its false gospel of sacramental grace and merit.

Objecting to the brainwashing is viewed as vile bigotry.

Pope Francis’ annoying gadfly

Finding Viganò: In Search of the Man Whose Testimony Shook the Church and the World
By Robert Moynihan
Tan Books, 2020, 375 pp.

2 Stars

Following his election to the papacy in 2013, Jorge Bergoglio aka pope Francis increasingly demonstrated that he was not going to follow in the conservative footsteps of his doctrinaire predecessors, John Paul II and Benedict XVI. When Francis tacitly lifted the ban on sacraments for remarried divorcees via a footnote in his 2016 apostolic exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, conservative prelates were galvanized. In November of 2017, four conservative cardinals formally submitted five “dubia” (questions) to the pope, requesting that he clarify his “reform” in light of traditional Catholic teaching, but were met with silence. As conservative opposition to the pope increased, a major scandal erupted in the Catholic church in June 2018 when it was revealed that cardinal Ted McCarrick, one of the most powerful prelates in the American Catholic church, was removed from “public ministry” for a long history of sexually abusing boys and seminarians. The scandal was the tipping point leading to large numbers of former victims across the United States coming forward and filing claims of sexual abuse and cover-up against priests and dioceses.

Two months later, in August of 2018, Catholicism was rocked even further when archbishop and former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States (2011 to 2016), Carlo Maria Viganò, testified that he had personally informed Francis of McCarrick’s predatory behavior back in 2013, shortly after he was elected, but that the pope had done nothing. Included in the archbishop’s statement were accusations of a powerful homosexual faction within the Vatican curia. Viganò called upon Francis to resign and forthwith went into hiding. In June and October 2020, Viganò issued additional statements supporting then-President Donald Trump and attacking the reforms of the Second Vatican Council. Included were comments promulgating several outlandish worldwide conspiracy theories, which served to marginalize Viganò even among conservatives.

In this book, Catholic journalist, Robert Moynihan provides biographical information about Viganò and interviews the archbishop-in-hiding regarding his 2018 testimony and the state of the Roman church under progressive Francis. Conservative opposition to Francis has not coalesced mainly because one of the prime tenets of conservative Catholics is absolute fealty to the papal office. This book is an example. Conservative Moynihan, founder and editor of “Inside the Vatican” magazine, attempts to walk a tightrope by providing a sympathetic soapbox for Viganò without outright endorsing his views.

This book provides some interesting information on Francis’ most vocal critic and “insider” insights into the current conservative-progressive tug-of-war within the the RCC. The significant takeaway from this book is that conservative Catholic priests and prelates realize that Francis is undermining Catholicism’s historic claims to the alleged authority and prerogatives of the papacy. Nowhere in sight within the 375 pages is the genuine Gospel of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. I would recommend this book only for evangelical Vatican watchers.

Throwback Thursday: KJV 1611-Only?

Welcome to this week’s “Throwback Thursday” installment. Today, we’re going to revisit a post that was originally published back on May 19, 2016 and has been revised. I don’t usually dwell on disagreements over secondary issues, but sometimes they can’t be avoided, especially when proponents of a particular view insist it’s a salvation issue.


The King James Only Controversy: Can You Trust Modern Translations?
By James R. White
Bethany House, 2009, 364 pages

5 Stars

I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior way back in 1983. There were many people and circumstances that pointed me to the Savior along the way, including a couple of guys at work. Jose and Ray knew I was interested in God and spiritual matters and would eagerly stop me in the hallway to strike up a conversation. I must admit, sometimes when I saw them coming from a distance, I turned and walked the other way. Can anyone else relate? But the Lord had been drawing me to Him for quite awhile, and I eventually accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior.

Jose and Ray were thrilled that I had accepted Christ, but they cautioned me that I needed to immediately plug into a good, Bible-believing church that only used the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. They advised me that all of the modern Bible versions were corrupt. Although I had just received Christ, I was no stranger to Christianity. I had done much reading and was already aware of the claims of the KJV 1611-only advocates.

Jose and Ray invited me to their church, First Bible Baptist* in Rochester, NY, and I visited a couple of times, but the church’s strong stance on the KJV bothered me. I asked Ray, “If the KJV is the only legitimate translation, then what about all the other people in the world who can’t read English? What do they do?” Ray answered that if modern translators used the KJV as their source-text for non-English Bibles then everything would be fine. Well, no translator is going to translate a translation when the ancient manuscripts are available. I also knew enough about translating to know that no two individuals would translate the KJV’s 17th-century English into another language using the EXACT same wording. Who then would judge which of the translations would be the “authorized” one? If the KJV 1611-only view was correct, then it appeared that God preferred English-speaking people over non-English-speakers. We Americans often have a parochial, myopic view when it comes to the rest of the world and I saw the KJV 1611-only mindset as another example of that.

Not wanting to attend a KJV 1611-only church, I looked through the yellow pages and chose another independent Baptist church close to our home. The pastor there used the King James Version, but he wasn’t dogmatic about it. Not once in the 8 years that we attended did he preach about the sole legitimacy of the KJV. I used the KJV at church like most everyone else in the congregation, but I read from my New American Standard Bible (NASB) at home. The archaic 17th-century English of the KJV seemed to me to be unnecessary baggage to have to deal with while reading the Bible.

I observed the KJV 1611-only controversy from a distance. Peter Ruckman spoke at week-long services at First Bible Baptist a couple of times. Anyone else remember him? Pastor Ruckman was based down in Florida and was one of the standard bearers of the KJV 1611-only movement. Ruckman’s weekly church services were televised in our area and his sermons always seemed to bring up the inerrancy of the KJV and the corruption of the modern translations. His messages usually included ad hominem attacks on anyone who didn’t agree with his KJV 1611-only viewpoint. Ruckman even went so far as to claim that if a particular text was found in the KJV, but not in the early manuscripts (and there are examples), then the additions to the KJV were divinely inspired!

So, I’ve been aware of the KJV 1611-only controversy for quite some time, but never gave it too much attention. After having walked away from the Lord for a very long “season,” I returned to Him two years ago. I continue to use the NASB in my daily Bible reading,** but also have a New International Version (NIV) since that is the translation used by our pastor. I began this blog last July and I’ve noticed from reading other blogs that there are still very strong advocates of the KJV 1611-only viewpoint. To educate myself a bit better, I recently read “The King James Only Controversy” by apologist, James R. White. I was already familiar with White because of his outstanding work defending the Gospel against the errors of Roman Catholicism.

I enjoyed “The King James Only Controversy” and found it to be very informative. I sincerely doubt those who hold to the KJV 1611-only viewpoint would consider it, but the reader who is curious about the controversy might find White’s book as helpful as I did.

Some thoughts from the book:

  • The English language Bible has a long history. The KJV translators relied heavily on the previous work of earlier translators such as Erasmus, Stephanus, and Beza. The KJV translators never considered their work to be inerrant and inspired, but only the best possible translation at the time. Early KJV Bibles referenced textual variations in the margins.
  • KJV 1611-only advocates are actually using a revision first published in 1769.
  • Several passages in the KJV are shown to be errors or extremely poor translations.
  • Variations in the ancient manuscripts can and should be examined objectively.
  • Modern translations (NASB, NIV, ESV, NKJV) are dependable. There are good reasons for the differences between the KJV and modern translations, but no translation is perfect, including the KJV.

Emotions run high on this issue. This post will surely offend some. Because KJV 1611-only advocates see the KJV as the inerrant, inspired translation of the Bible, they see any disagreement with their view as a direct attack on God’s Word and an attack on God Himself. There are actually many in the KJV 1611-only camp who go so far as to claim that anyone who does not use the KJV exclusively is not a genuine Christian. I’m not a Bible manuscript scholar, far from it, but I offer White’s book as a thoughtful rebuttal to the KJV 1611-only argument. This post is NOT an attack on God and His Word, although, if you’re a KJV 1611-only advocate, I’m sure you’ll see it that way.***

I’m not claiming that all translations are equal. Christians need to be discerning and must do a little homework. I would never recommend that anyone use a paraphrase Bible as their primary Bible, but I occasionally check a paraphrase Bible (NLT) as a resource.

The Pilgrims and Puritan Protestants came to America with the Geneva Bible, not the KJV. The translators of the KJV were high-church Anglicans and the Puritans viewed the KJV with great suspicion. The article below gives an interesting history of the English Bible for those who don’t want to go to all the trouble of buying and reading White’s book.


* The pastor of First Bible Baptist church at the time was James Modlish, a key figure in the KJV 1611-only movement.

**Note from 2021: I’ve been using the ESV the last several years.

***Another note from 2021: KJV 1611-Onlyism is still a popular paradigm within what remains of independent Baptist fundamentalism. Because of this book, KJV 1611-Onlyists view James R. White as a pawn of Satan.

The LGBTQ rainbow now even on my iPhone screen

We’re in the midst of “National Pride Month” and the ubiquitous LGBTQ rainbow is now even on my iPhone screen, compliments of the WordPress app.

I thought it was ironic that the LGBTQ rainbow-hued WP app is right next to my ESV Bible app. This brought to mind the Old Testament passage in which the Philistines captured the ark of the covenant and set it up next to their statue of Dagon. You know the rest. Truth is not contradictory. God’s truth will stand forever and all opposing social crusades will someday fall.

“When the Philistines captured the ark of God, they brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. 2 Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it into the house of Dagon and set it up beside Dagon. 3 And when the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the Lord. So they took Dagon and put him back in his place. 4 But when they rose early on the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the Lord, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were lying cut off on the threshold. Only the trunk of Dagon was left to him. 5 This is why the priests of Dagon and all who enter the house of Dagon do not tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.” – 1 Samuel 5:1-5

Truth from Arkansas! Sunday Sermon Series, #89

It’s Two-fer-Tuesday, my friends, which normally means two new sermons from the brethren down in Arkansas.

But today we just have Pastor Roger Copeland of Northern Hills Baptist Church in Texarkana, preaching from Luke 10:1-24 on “When On Mission For God.”

This sermon was delivered on Sunday, June 6th.

Pastor Roger Copeland – When On Mission For God

Heluva Good New England Clam Dip Recipe

Yesterday marked the first official day of Summer, so fire up the grill and bring out the burgers, hot dogs, and marinated chicken thighs! At our house, a patio picnic includes wavy potato chips and dip; New England clam dip that is. The days of buying clam dip at your local grocery store are long gone, but take heart because I have a very easy recipe for you. The post below was first published on July 10, 2017 and continues as this blog’s second most-viewed post of all time with 6981 hits to date.


An accoutrement staple of Summer backyard picnic dining is potato chips and dip. One of my family’s favorite chip dips used to be a New England clam dip manufactured by a local cheese company named “Heluva Good” of all things (see photo). For some reason, Heluva Good stopped making its clam dip in the early aughts (2000s). Some said it was in response to tightening FDA regulations.

Unable to purchase clam dip, my hankering grew and grew until I finally started searching online for a clam dip recipe that was similar to Heluva Good’s. I found the one below several years ago. It’s a pretty close facsimile and very easy to make. Any time we serve it to guests they always rave about it. I could eat a whole bowl of clam dip with wavy chips in a single sitting all by myself, but my arteries clog up at just the thought of it.

p.s. Heluva Good was headquartered in nearby Sodus N.Y. but was bought out by food conglomerate HP Hood in 2004 and like most things in New York, production was eventually moved out of state. It’s also interesting that the slang term, “one hell of a…” is used to connote something that’s either very good or very bad. The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms says the phrase (or “one Devil of a…”) has its roots in the second half of the 1700s.

Heluva Good New England Clam Dip Recipe

  • 6.5 oz. can chopped clams
  • 6.5 oz. can minced clams
  • 8 oz. package Philadelphia brand cream cheese – allow to reach room temperature
  • ½ tsp. minced garlic
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 and ½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 dashes Red Hot or Tabasco sauce
  • ¼ tsp. paprika
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  1. Drain clams, reserving ¼ cup clam broth. Put drained clams aside.
  2. Mix cream cheese with hand-held electric mixer until smooth while adding clam broth, garlic, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, paprika, salt, and black pepper.
  3. Add clams and mix together with a spoon or spatula.
  4. Cover and refrigerate for three hours
  5. Sprinkle the top with some additional paprika before serving.

Serve with Lay’s Wavy Potato Chips. Enjoy!

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 6/19/21

When Catholics refer to “Christian unity” what they mean is Protestants’ eventual disavowal of the Reformation and the genuine Gospel and their recognition and acceptance of papal authority and works-righteousness Catholic doctrine.

The U.S. Catholic bishops met this past week and defied pope Francis by voting to formalize guidelines that would deny the Jesus wafer to Catholic politicians who publicly support pro-abortion legislation, like President Joe Biden and House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi.

Perhaps some of the reluctance of pope Francis to apologize for the sufferings and deaths of hundreds of children at Catholic-run residential schools in Canada is that apologies connote culpability and lead to monetary payouts to victims and/or their families.

Surprise! There actually are a few conservative and traditionalist Catholics in Germany and they decry the direction of the current “Synodal Path” progressive initiative.

Throughout his tenure, pope Francis has regularly chided his conservative and traditionalist opponents with statements critical of “rigid priests” and “clericalism.”

Jesuit James Martin has been fighting for full acceptance of practicing LGBTers within the RCC. He has the unofficial backing of pope Francis.

I have not heard anything about this Lifewise Academy that’s mentioned in this article. I don’t know their theology, but I suspect they avoid doctrinal distinctives in order to circumvent negative reaction and controversy, i.e., Roman Catholic students can attend their courses without being presented with the genuine Gospel (rejection of works-righteousness religion and salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone).

American evangelicals were outraged by the Supreme Court’s ban on compulsory prayer in public schools in 1962 and have been calling for a return to the practice ever since. I’m not a fan of government-sponsored collective compulsory prayer or even shared “moments of silence,” when the unsaved of every religious stripe jointly contemplate an acceptable-to-all, nebulous “supreme being.”

The tug-of-war within the SBC involves two fronts; the fight over political involvement including “cultural relevancy” issues AND the fight over theology. It just so happens that those who espouse fidelity to doctrinal orthodoxy also largely propagate church-government integralism. What a mess. Expect an SBC split in the near future.