Busted Halo
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July 26th, 2007
The former Missouri Senator (and ordained Episcopal priest) discusses how "moral values" have polarized America

When Missouri Republican John Danforth began his political career in 1968, he was already an ordained Episcopal priest. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1976, and re-elected in 1982 and 1988 before retiring in 1994. As priest and politician, Danforth says he is increasingly concerned about the state of American politics and its excessive polarization. His latest book, Faith and Politics: How the Moral Values Debate Divides America and How to Move Forward Together examines why he believes religion has been misused as a way to drive a wedge and erode the political center. Danforth recently sat down with BustedHalo… not only to call his own party to task for pandering to the Christian Right, but also to challenge

July 18th, 2007
One Paulist's journey from park ranger to priest to immigration-rights activist

Park Ranger and Pastor are not career paths that would seem to overlap much, but it was Paulist Father Gilbert Martinez’s work at the Grand Canyon that led him to the priesthood. After spending several years working as a National Park Ranger in the heart of one of the most awesome natural wonders on earth, the California native felt the call. Though he isn’t normally given to such lofty expressions of spirituality, Martinez looks back at his years of work—often alone in the quiet of the natural world—as a time when he was able to listen to God talk. His experiences in this cathedral of nature led him back to his Catholic faith and, eventually, the priesthood.
While he is still drawn to the beauty…

July 3rd, 2007
Hot off the campaign trail, the Kansas senator discusses faith, evolution and running for president

CNS Photos
Senator Sam Brownback is the Senior U.S. Senator from the state of Kansas. He is a devout Catholic and also a candidate for president of the United States. His very conservative stance on life issues, his refusal to separate his religious beliefs from his politics as well as his controversial response to a question about evolution at a recent Republican debate have all contributed to a gathering momentum in his campaign. Senator Brownback spoke to Fr. Dave Dwyer on the BustedHalo show on Sirius satellite radio just after returning from a four day, twenty-seven city campaign tour in Iowa.
BustedHalo: …Twenty-seven stops in Iowa sounds like a pretty extensive trip. How did it go?

Senator Sam Brownback:

June 5th, 2007
The former rock journalist talks about her conversion and The Thrill of the Chaste

BustedHalo: Dawn, you and I have known each other for a long time. I knew you mainly as a rock and roll journalist, who did liner notes for lots of cd reissues and wrote for a bunch of magazines…
Dawn Eden: (laughs) See, I love this because you having known me for a while can attest to the fact that I’m not just a poser. You know there are plenty of Christian writers who say, “Oh yeah, I was hip once, I was in the rock world once.”
BH: I can vouch for the fact that you were once in the rock world. In fact you and I once worked together when you wrote press releases for my old band and on my solo cds. So this is a big turn for you. Talk to me a little bit about how your book came about, Thrill of the Chaste. And what got

May 24th, 2007
The man behind PBS' "Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly" discusses The Life of Meaning

After spending more than four decades covering world events for NBC news— including a stint in Moscow between 1989-1994 where he reported on the end of the Cold War—Bob Abernethy set his sights on covering a different kind of story. Raised in a family of devout Northern Baptists, Abernethy was aware that a serious discussion surrounding issues of faith was missing from the national media landscape and developed PBS’ Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly to fill that gap. A decade later the show he created has helped add nuance and depth to the frequently one-dimensional and shallow discussion of faith and spirituality in the United States. In his new book The Life of Meaning: Reflections on Faith,…

May 22nd, 2007
The popular expert on the connection between mind, body and spirit visits the BustedHalo show on Sirius Satellite radio

Deepak Chopra is one of the world’s greatest leaders in the field of mind, body and medicine. The author of more than 50 books, Chopra is regarded as the pre-eminent authority of Eastern philosophy in the Western world. He has been a best selling author for decades whose writings have been translated into 35 languages. What many do not know is that Dr. Chopra was also the chief of staff at the Boston Medical Center and has long been revolutionizing common wisdom about the crucial connection between body, mind, spirit and healing. In his new book, The Buddha. A Story of Enlightenment…. Dr. Chopra shows how the iconic journey of the prince who became the Buddha has changed the world forever and how the lessons he

April 27th, 2007
Busted Halo talks conversion, pride, and holistic faith with the leader of indie rock's would-be revolutionaries.

Hang around the Christian music festival circuit for very long, and you’ll invariably hear about mewithoutYou‘s Aaron Weiss. Everyone has a story. Some have seen him walking around the festival grounds, picking half-eaten sandwiches out of the garbage and finishing them. Others talk about how he and his friends live in a commune in Philadelphia, sharing their possessions and profits from the band to live a life similar to those in the early church. Most who’ve met him say you haven’t felt a real hug until you’ve experienced his bone-cracking embrace. Everyone swears there’s something different about him, something beyond guitar riffs and record sales.
But standing…

April 17th, 2007
The country music legend opines on God, politics and Bob Dylan

He’s a born again Christian who made his name in the 1970s with a song about the devil. He’s also a “Long Haired Country Boy” who is fiercely patriotic. Charlie Daniels’ 40-plus year career has never been short on contradictions so it came as no surprise that the Grammy-winning perfomer also wasn’t short on opinions either.
Daniels recently sat down for an interview with Fr. Dave Dwyer during Fr. Dave’s daily “BustedHalo Show” on Sirius Satellite radio.
BustedHalo: Now I know the tradition you were raised in was not Catholic, but you’ve got an experience of Catholicism.
Charlie Daniels: Yes, I do and it was a very special experience, and it was…

March 27th, 2007
A young Atlanta priest uses a popular morning show as his hip-hop pulpit

by Is God using Naomi Campbell to teach us a lesson? The man Atlantans know as “Father Crunk” seems to think so. Here’s what he had to say about the supermodel, whose cell phone assault of her former maid resulted in “mop duty” at New York’s Sanitation Department this month—”We need to teach bullies a lesson. Bullies need to have the fear of God in them when they start trippin’. You can deal with bullies and still be loved by God.”
For those who may be hip-hop impaired, “crunk” is a type of hip-hop music that originated from the South. A fusion of the words ‘crazy’ and ‘drunk,’ “crunk” music is meant…

February 23rd, 2007
The star and director of Amazing Grace discuss religion, politics and the life of William Wilberforce

Though less-renowned in the United States than in Great Britain, William Wilberforce (1759-1833) was a member of Parliament who fought an epic battle for two decades to end the slave trade in the British Empire. While he is remembered primarily as legendary social reformer, Wilberforce’s tireless commitment to justice was animated by his deeply held Christian faith. His convictions were nurtured under the mentorship of John Newton, the former slave ship captain who renounced his work and devoted the rest of his life to Christian ministry (he also composed numerous hymns including the timeless “Amazing Grace”).
In the newly released film, Amazing Grace, Wilberforce’s life is…

February 7th, 2007
The painfully amusing genius of HBO's "Extras"

Andy Millman is the patron saint of resentment. The perpetually put-upon actor has love handles but no love life, recently landed a role in a sitcom that has been generously described as a “sh*tcom,” and retains the professional services of the worst talent agent in the United Kingdom. Yet in the hands of Ricky Gervais, the star and co-creator of the HBO series “Extras,” (Sunday nights on HBO at 10pm) Andy Millman’s unending misery is comic delight.
“Extras,” which centers on the awful travails of Millman’s bizarre career, is the funniest and cleverest show on TV. Now in its second season, it is yet another reason to buy a subscription to HBO. (In addition to…

January 19th, 2007
BustedHalo discusses life in the spotlight with the most high-profile Christian band in the post-hardcore rock scene.

Though self-identified Christian bands have been slowly breaking down the distinctions between the music that appears on the mainstream music charts and the albums that are normally trapped in the Christian music ghetto, the morning of June 20, 2006 marked a watershed moment with the release of Underoath’s Define the Great Line. One week and 98,000 copies later, they occupied the #2 album slot on the Billboard Top 200 chart. If Christian bands were supposed to only sell records to the converted, someone forgot to tell the legion of kids across the country that went to their local music store and plopped down $18 for Underoath’s latest assessment of the contemporary Christian life.
This was Underoath—a…

January 9th, 2007
The real-life team chaplain remembers the tragedy depicted in the film We Are Marshall

In 1970, Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia, faced a tragedy of epic proportions when it lost its entire football squad, along with coaching staff, boosters and family members in a plane crash. The recently released film, We Are Marshall tells the story of how this tiny steel town coped with the loss of loved ones, and how Jack Lengyel (played by Matthew McConaughey) took the coaching reigns and tried not only to rebuild an athletic team, but also a community.
Paulist Father Bob Scott—who was the campus minister and chaplain for Marshall University’s football team at the time—would’ve perished along with everyone else had he not stayed behind to work on campus that weekend.…

December 19th, 2006
The Arizona Cardinals QB is no fair-weather follower

Perhaps best-known as the man with the Cinderella story who catapulted the St. Louis Rams to a win in Super Bowl XXXIV, Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner is also noted for wearing his faith on his jersey sleeve. But it’s not the kind of display we often see, like players pointing to the heavens or kneeling in prayer in the end zone after winning a game. These rituals have become so much a part of the show in professional sports that at times the gestures seem like odd forms of spiritual showboating.
Warner’s Christian faith manifests itself in a different way on the field. Since winning the Super Bowl and being a two-time league MVP very early on in his career, Warner has struggled since 2003 to get…

December 1st, 2006
The former Bush staffer discusses his book Tempting Faith and the mutually seductive (and destructive) relationship between faith and politics

By the age of thirty, David Kuo was already a seasoned veteran in the highly specialized political warfare that takes place inside the beltway. First as an assistant to Bill Bennett and then later as a policy adviser to John Ashcroft and speechwriter for Ralph Reed, Pat Robertson, and Bob Dole, Kuo, a committed Christian, helped to articulate the vision and values that were at the core of the Religious Right’s agenda. But his devotion to politics took its toll and by the late 90s Kuo’s life began unraveling. His marriage had ended and he had left politics.
After a detour working for a dot.com and an unsuccessful attempt to start a charity to help the poor, Kuo was contacted to write speeches for then Governor…

November 16th, 2006
A candid conversation about the papacy with the author of The Rule of Benedict

In the wake of the midterm elections that created such a seismic shift in the American political landscape it is easy to forget that, not long ago, the entire world waited anxiously to hear the results of a very different balloting. Though the choice to make Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger the next pope was only decided on by a small group of cardinals and not a popular vote, the impact of that decision has been enormous.
Following in the footsteps of Pope John Paul II—one of the most significant world figures of the past 50 years—is not an enviable task. But as David Gibson’s insightful new book The Rule of Benedict makes clear, Pope Benedict XVI’s pontificate will not simply be a transitional…

November 9th, 2006
Faith, doubt and the midterm elections. A conversation with the author of The Conservative Soul.

I was a Catholic in a Protestant country.
I was a gay boy in the Catholic church.
I’m now an immigrant English person who came and made his life in America.
I’m a conservative at war with the Republican party.

Ahhh…and you thought your life was complicated?
As the quote above makes clear, Andrew Sullivan resists easy categorization. Ever since rising to prominence in the early 90s as the outspoken editor of The New Republic, the author/pundit/blogger/public intellectual has been a provocative voice in the rough and tumble arena of political, cultural and religious thought.
In his essays for Time or the constant commentary he publishes on his enormously popular blog “The Daily Dish”…

October 6th, 2006
The Franciscan Friar from the Bronx talks about the release of his third rap album

Chances are while you were having a cup of coffee this morning Fr. Stan Fortuna had already produced a new DVD, written a chapter for a book and recorded some new songs for an upcoming cd—depending on his mood it could’ve be jazz, Brazilian, hip hop or any number of the many styles of music he’s worked in over the past 20 years.
Don’t worry, it’s not that you’re necessarily lazy it’s just that the “rappin’ Capuchin” as he is known to some is an unstoppable force of nature. Now in his late forties, Fortuna has the energy of someone decades younger. He speaks in an exuberant, non-stop, New York-ese that you’d expect to hear waiting in line outside…

October 1st, 2006
One of the most important whistle-blowers of the 20th century urges current Pentagon employees not to make the same mistakes he did.

He was a Harvard-educated PhD whose star was on the rise in Washington, a trusted adviser to several administrations with access to highly confidential information. All of that changed on June 13, 1971 when the New York Times published the first installment of a classified 7000-page document dealing with the war in Vietnam that later became known as “The Pentagon Papers.”
Daniel Ellsberg was the source of the leak that exposed the deliberate deception that several presidents had engaged in regarding our involvement in Vietnam. President Nixon was so incensed by the revelation that he blocked publication of the document until the Supreme Court intervened and ruled against him.

September 14th, 2006
Busted Halo discusses the Christian music industry and the culture that birthed it with music journalist and author of Body Piercing Saved My Life, Andrew Beaujon.

Though much has changed in recent years to allow openly Christian musicians to move out of the Christian rock ghetto, it is still rare to come across a self-respecting music fan who would take the genre seriously, let alone admit to actually liking some of it. But in the pages of his entertaining and enlightening study of the Christian music industry entitled Body Piercing Saved My Life, Andrew Beaujon—contributing writer for Spin who also writes for the Washington Post and Salon—reveals this much maligned corner of the music industry to be far less monolithic (and less uniformly lame) than many outsiders realize.
Tracing the growth of the Christian music industry through the recovering hippies…

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