Nathan Blake is a 28-year-old lawyer who left his firm to work full-time in Iowa on the Barack Obama campaign for president. He talks to Spectrum about mixing politics and religion, and Obama's chances.
Question: What is your role in the Barack Obama campaign? What do you do every day?
Answer: I've been a field organizer for about a year and recently switched to the communications team in Iowa.
Field work is on-the-ground voter contact – what this campaign is famous for.
Robert E. Lemon has been the treasurer of the Seventh-day Adventist world church for the last six years. He recently reported tithe takings of $1.78 billion for the last fiscal year – as well as a multimillion “extraordinary tithe”.
In a wide-ranging interview with Spectrum, he shares his insights about how giving trends are changing, how the Church spends its money and why endowments aren’t always a good idea.
Alden Thompson, professor of biblical studies at Walla Walla University, is a prolific writer, frequent speaker and long-time contributor to Spectrum. Here he talks to Spectrum about how he sees the Adventist church changing, and the conflict between liberal and conservative Adventism.
Question: You have been at the Walla Walla University School of Theology since 1970. What changes have you seen in Adventist thinking and Adventist theology in the last four decades?
A new movie called Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed advocates "intelligent design" and promotes itself as a film that uncovers the persecution of educators and scientists for challenging evolution. Starring Ben Stein as questioner - Michael Moore-style, except conservative - the movie banked $3.2 million on its opening weekend.
It has garnered plenty of criticism, and even a lawsuit from Yoko Ono who isn't happy about the movie's use of John Lennon's song "Imagine."
Renee Battle-Brooks is chief of the Child Abuse and Sexual Assault Unit at the Prince George's County (Maryland) State's Attorney's Office. She spoke candidly to Spectrum about the tough cases she deals with every day and how frustrating the job can be. But she sees that believing in people empowers them, and she keeps on fighting.
Question: How long have you been in your job and what led up to it? How did you pick this area of work?
Sarah Porter, with a career in international development ahead of her, recently accepted a job with ADRA in Yemen. A few weeks in, Spectrum asked her what the country is like and what her job is teaching her.
Q: How would you describe Yemen from your experience so far? How is it the same, or different, than you imagined? What are the Yemeni people like?
In 2005, Palgrave Macmillan published The Road to Clarity: Seventh-day Adventism in Madagascar. This social anthropological study, written after two years of fieldwork by Eva Keller, has been acclaimed by academics and read with interest by Adventists.
The study, which began as a PhD thesis for the London School of Economics in 2002, examines the intellectual life of Malagasy Adventists, and the reasons they remain members of the church.
Last year, Shi-Yeon Sung became the first woman to be named assistant conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Working under the renowned James Levine, the 32-year-old South Korean is making the most of her two-year opportunity to work with some of the world’s best musicians and conductors.
In 2006, Sung won the prestigious Sir Georg Solti International Conductors’ Competition in Frankfurt, Germany – the first woman to ever take home the top prize. She was given €15,000 in prize money and concerts with the Frankfurt Museum Orchestra and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony.