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Author Mitch Carnell

Mitch Carnell is a member of First Baptist Church of Charleston, South Carolina. He is the author of “Our Father: Discovering Family.” His writings can also be found at

I have been thinking about Bill Wilson’s article on the word “just” since it appeared Oct. 31. In fact, the Rev. Bob Boston, retired Presbyterian minister and counselor, had already chastised me about saying, “I’m just a layman.” I understand that the phrase tends to create second-class citizenship for the laity. Using laypeople to teach […] Read More

As the Republican candidates for president crisscross South Carolina, spewing venom at each other and producing lots of heat but no light, I have to ponder what I want for our country. I want everyone to have adequate food and a safe place to sleep. I want everyone to have access to health care. I […] Read More

Many people regard New Year’s resolutions with the same disdain they attribute to the fruitcake. I am a proponent of both. For several years now, I have made the same New Year’s resolution, and I ask God to help me to keep it: I will take no bitterness into the new year. Whatever has happened […] Read More

Editor’s note: The National Day of Listening was started by StoryCorps in 2008. Click here for more about the day, and here for a feature on StoryCorps. The day after Thanksgiving is not only Black Friday, it is also NationalDayofListening. Here is one day when we are all encouraged to listen to each other. It […] Read More

By all reports, the workplace is at its most toxic level. Bullying, disrespect and hostility are rampant. The protracted economic meltdown has only served to make matters worse. The result is an unhealthy environment that is costing both employers and employees. Workers are not as efficient or effective. They accomplish less in the same amount […] Read More

Carol and I left New York City on Sept. 2, 2001, after seeing “The Music Man” the night before on Broadway. Nothing could have prepared us for what lay ahead. “The Music Man” is about as American and apple pie as any show can be. It portrays our values in a delightful, light-hearted manner. We […] Read More

Does urging Christians to practice civility rob them of their ability to speak out on issues of great importance to them? This is the criticism I hear most often, that somehow striving for a more respectful dialog fosters a watered-down approach to the issues that confront us. Some have suggested that following this admonition is […] Read More

I was surprised and perplexed as I examined my curious, contradictory behavior. My wife and I go each summer for a week to the ChautauquaInstitution in western New York state, where we hear outstanding ministers from a variety of pulpits. I always take a notepad to the worship services and sit with pen ready to […] Read More

One of the most encouraging telephone calls I ever received came one Saturday morning. The woman introduced herself as the wife of a former student. She wanted me to know that her husband had just been chosen as the administrator of a major hospital in Florida. Then her husband came on the line. “I want […] Read More

The cashier and I were concluding our discussion about the “Say Something Nice” button I was wearing when I handed one to the man who had just walked up. “Fat chance,” he said looking at the button. “Those guys in Washington set a bad example.” Back at home, I clicked on the national news in […] Read More