Welcome to my blog. Ã¢â‚¬Å“On Religion,Ã¢â‚¬? IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m calling it.
I approach the whole thing with trepidation.
Why? First off, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve grown quite comfortable writing in the detached, pseudo-objective, third-person voice of a newspaper reporter. An article may have my byline on it, but IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m removed from the words. Like a narrator you hear but donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t see, I suppose.
Now IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m blogging. I still have to write what I see and hear and observe. But I can no longer pretend IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m not there. I have to be part of it. Like a host or a guide. Gary Stern in first person. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I. I. I. Me. Me. Me.Ã¢â‚¬?
Second, writing about religion, as a journalist, isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t always easy. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been on the beat for almost 10 years, trying to explain and interpret events in the religious realm. I do so while trying hard not to (unintentionally) offend any group, denomination, movement or sect.
I have a feeling that it will be easier to offend by blog.
If I write in my own voice while trying to make sense of some conflict, I can see partisan-types taking my observations as signs of bias or an agenda.
But maybe not. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll see.
Journalism evolved from the keeping of journals, right? Maybe a blog is just a modern journal. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s how IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m going to look about it.
IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m writing notes and thoughts in my journal. But instead of translating them into newspaper-ese, my notes Ã¢â‚¬â€œ succinct, pithy and insightful Ã¢â‚¬â€œ become this blog.
The world of religion is an awfully big place. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll try to touch on events and trends, people and ideas, that are important or interesting (or even, on a good day, both). LetÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s see how it goes.