Theater chain changes mind on Passion ad
The AMC movie theater chain gained media attention this week for rejecting an ad from the Baptist General Convention of Texas, which wanted to tie in a publicity campaign to the upcoming film The Passion of the Christ.

"You want to see the most scandalous story ever?" an actor says as the ad opens. That's followed by a series of words flashing on the screen: Betrayal. Sin. Adultery. Greed. Envy. Weakness. Poverty. Torture. Murder. Then the young actor again: "Redemption," he says, and the Baptist convention's logo appears, with the words, "Now playing at a Baptist church near you."

Too hot for the AMC, apparently. But when the BGCT offered to change the words murder, torture, and adultery to fear, anger, and deceit, the AMC said it would take the ad, which will now appear on about 150 screens in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area.

"I suppose AMC has the right to choose what they have on their screen, but this policy is hypocritical," Wesley Shotwell, vice moderator of the BGCT's executive board told the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram. "There's been a lot of sex and violence on their screens during the movies."

Still, since the BGCT and the Southern Baptist Convention have been at each other's throats lately, Weblog is eager to see if any Southern Baptists will accuse the BGCT of "watering down the gospel" by changing the words. (Just kidding, folks.)

Second grader suspended for mentioning hell
After a classmate said, "I swear to God," 7-year-old Brandy McKenith warned that such language was troubling to the Almighty.

She could have said, "You know, Scripture warns against taking the Lord's name in vain, and furthermore, warns against taking oaths. These are affronts to God's sovereignty and holiness, since ...

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Launched in 1999, Christianity Today’s Weblog was not just one of the first religion-oriented weblogs, but one of the first published by a media organization. (Hence its rather bland title.) Mostly compiled by then-online editor Ted Olsen, Weblog rounded up religion news and opinion pieces from publications around the world. As Christianity Today’s website grew, it launched other blogs. Olsen took on management responsibilities, and the Weblog feature as such was mothballed. But CT’s efforts to round up important news and opinion from around the web continues, especially on our Gleanings feature.
Ted Olsen
Ted Olsen is Christianity Today's executive editor. He wrote the magazine's Weblog—a collection of news and opinion articles from mainstream news sources around the world—from 1999 to 2006. In 2004, the magazine launched Weblog in Print, which looks for unexpected connections and trends in articles appearing in the mainstream press. The column was later renamed "Tidings" and ran until 2007.
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