Brinton’s Bridges

When Big Fails, Go Small

When Big Fails, Go Small

The Roman Empire fell in the year 476, and historian Edward Gibbon said it was “the greatest, perhaps, and most awful scene, in the history of mankind.” But positive things continued to happen throughout Europe. Perhaps the lesson is: When big fails, go small. In The...

Unexpected Friends

Unexpected Friends

My friend Jason DeParle moved to the Philippines in the 1980s and lived with a Filipino family in a shantytown. They became unexpected friends. Now DeParle, a New York Times journalist, has written a book on global migration called A Good Provider Is One Who Leaves....

Canary in the Coal Mine

Canary in the Coal Mine

"We are in trouble,” said the Secretary General of the United Nations. “We are in deep trouble with climate change.” Harley Camden felt as though his river town of Occoquan was going to be the canary in the coal mine. In my upcoming novel Windows of the Heavens,...

“I Love Jihad So Much”

“I Love Jihad So Much”

Several weeks ago, the FBI arrested two men at the Tucson airport, under suspicion of supporting ISIS. One of the men said, "I love jihad so much." The threat of terrorist attacks is real, both in the US and in countries such as Egpyt. According to the Arizona...

Clergy Are Irrelevant, According to Poll

Clergy Are Irrelevant, According to Poll

A new poll reveals that Americans no longer hold ministers in high regard, and in the minds of many, clergy are irrelevant. Religion News Service reports that among people who attend church less than once a month, only 42% say they have a positive view of clergy...

When the Heavens Opened

When the Heavens Opened

In early July, a morning storm dumped over 4 inches of rain near Arlington, Virginia. Floodwaters rose when the heavens opened. According to The Baltimore Sun, water levels at Cameron Run in Alexandria, Virginia, rose more than 7 feet over 30 minutes. In Montgomery...

Phebe Novakovic in Occoquan

Phebe Novakovic in Occoquan

Phebe Novakovic is the chief executive of General Dynamics, a global aerospace and defense company. She started her national security career at the CIA. You would not expect to find Phebe Novakovic in Occoquan. And yet, both she and the people of Occoquan are deeply...

Inspirations For My Novel

Inspirations For My Novel

Writing can be a lonely activity, so I've enjoyed having opportunities in recent months to speak to groups about City of Peace. Everyone seems interested in the inspirations for my novel. I have spoken to members of churches, residents of a town, participants in a...

Nothing In The World More Powerful

Nothing In The World More Powerful

"What unites people?" asked the imp Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones. "Stories. There's nothing in the world more powerful than a good story. Nothing can stop it. No enemy can defeat it."  Although the final season of the HBO megahit Game of Thrones was full...

Being Nourished in Body and Spirit

Being Nourished in Body and Spirit

This spring, people of faith have been gathering around tables and being nourished in body and spirit: In April, Christians had Communion on Maundy Thursday, remembering that Jesus broke bread at the Last Supper and said, “Do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19)....

How Do You Spell Koinonia?

How Do You Spell Koinonia?

The Greek word appears 19 times in the New Testament. Important for Christians in the ancient world, it means sharing, contribution, or fellowship. But how do you spell "koinonia"? You don’t see koinonia every day, but it showed up in the 2018 Scripps National...

When a Terrorist Comes to Town

When a Terrorist Comes to Town

A terrorist spent two years studying the Islamic State fighters who attacked civilians overseas. Then he came to town. In early April, a Maryland man planned to drive a stolen U-Haul van into a crowd of people at National Harbor, outside of Washington, DC. By this...