Digital Loneliness

Many measures of adolescent mental health began to deteriorate sometime around 2009. It is true of the number of U.S. high-school students who say they feel persistently sad or hopeless. It’s also true of reported loneliness. And it is true of emergency room visits for self-harm among Americans ages 10 to 19. This timing is suspicious because internet use among adolescents was also starting to soar during the same period. Apple began selling the iPhone in 2007. Facebook opened itself for general use in late 2006, and one-third of Americans were using it by 2009. Continue reading

Do not let your hearts be troubled

This coming Sunday is the 5th Sunday of Easter in Lectionary Cycle A. In yesterday’s post we introduced the idea of a farewell discourse and its biblical legacy. Today, we begin to consider the opening words of the gospel: “Do not let your hearts be troubled” (14:1). These same words will be repeated in v.27 when Jesus promises that the Holy Spirit will accompany them after Jesus returns to the Father. Continue reading