Legal battle in Southern California could threaten federal Colorado River drought plan

The fight between a lynchpin water and energy district could threaten a multi-state emergency drought plan for Colorado River




Employee handling food with bare hands among violations on this week's restaurant inspection list

Four restaurants in Mesa and Phoenix on this week’s list for 4 or more violations. Also see 20 spots that earned top scores.




I Told My Husband I Had Feelings for Another Man

When we finally spoke face-to-face, his exact words were, “I get it. He’s scratching an itch that I can’t right now.”

I remember the moment I felt an unmistakable attraction to a man who wasn’t my husband. It would mark the beginning of an infatuation that waxed and waned for nearly a year. He and I were both active in a local community organization. For at least six months, we had greeted each other and exchanged superficial pleasantries on a weekly basis without anything remarkable transpiring. But on this particular day, we had a long, substantive conversation. Through it, I discovered that we not only shared many of the same perspectives but also clicked well—to the point my heart rate increased and the hairs on my arms and the back of my neck stood up.

I don’t know if he had felt any of the same things as I did. If so, he didn’t show it. Our parting was casual and friendly. We didn’t hug or shake hands. But as I got in my car, I couldn’t stop grinning. I was hyper-aware of all my senses.

Looking back, it’s not surprising it happened. I was in the midst of a major identity shift that was changing the way I saw myself and how I fit in the world. After learning previously unknown stories of my family, I had come to embrace my Taiwanese heritage—a development that caused me to abandon many of my long-held beliefs about race, class, money, power, and social responsibility. The opinions and ideas that had once fostered solidarity between my husband, Peter, and me were now a source of friction.

At home, I constantly felt hurt, misunderstood, and frustrated. I prayed about these negative feelings, but doing so didn’t magically erase the pain and isolation caused by not feeling seen or understood by my life partner. I still loved Peter and knew he loved me, but an ideological and personal chasm …

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Can Christians Drink Alcohol? Here’s What 1,000 Protestant Churchgoers Think

Most say the Bible doesn’t ban booze, but they abstain anyway.

Views on Christians drinking alcohol have stayed steady among Protestant churchgoers over the past decade, according to a new study.

While 41 percent of Protestant churchgoers say they consume alcohol, 59 percent say they do not, according to a survey released today by Nashville-based LifeWay Research.

In a 2007 phone survey, LifeWay found 39 percent of Protestant churchgoers said they consume alcohol while 61 percent said they do not.

Gallup surveys over the last 75 years have typically shown that two-thirds of all American adults have occasion to drink alcoholic beverages, including 63 percent in 2018.

“While alcohol consumption continues be seen as mainstream in the United States, churchgoers’ attitudes about drinking haven’t changed much in the past decade,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research.

Almost 9 in 10 of churchgoers (87%) agree that Scripture says people should never get drunk. That’s up from 82 percent in 2007.

But when it comes to total abstinence, fewer than a quarter (23%) of Protestant churchgoers believe Scripture indicates people should never drink alcohol. A majority (71%) disagree.

The share of churchgoers who say Scripture teaches against any kind of alcohol consumption has decreased six percentage points over the last decade. In 2007, 29 percent said Scripture directs people to never drink alcohol; 68 percent disagreed.

When Christians drink socially, many churchgoers believe they could cause other believers to stumble or be confused. In 2017, 60 percent agree and 32 percent disagree. (The portion who say drinking socially could cause others to stumble dropped slightly from 63 percent in 2007.)

Researchers also found slightly more than half of churchgoers …

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Is Scottsdale's controversial Desert Edge project dead? City leaders give their takes

Prop. 420 and Desert Edge, while not synonymous, were inextricably linked.




Video shows how gunshot at gender reveal party started Arizona wildfire

The U.S. Forest Service released a video Monday showing how the 2017 Sawmill Fire in southern Arizona started.




Your Brain Is Not a Computer

Why being human means we must be embodied.

Human bodies married to metallic bodies—one complex system intertwining with another—happen with more frequency these days. Samsung revealed research this month on technology that would allow people with physical disabilities to control their TVs with their thoughts. Johnny Matheny became the first man to receive a robotically controlled arm earlier this year.

But in some ways, movement toward cyborg (cybernetic organism) applications sounds like a leap into dystopian science fiction. Businessman Elon Musk aims to connect the brain to computers, and one neurologist was even willing to hack his own brain to further research on human speech, hoping to one day attain life extension itself.

While recent advances in medical science have shown just how complex the human body is, and therefore how difficult this will be, computers continue to become more and more complex. The study of these two systems developing together over time is called cybernetics, a term coined by the mathematician-philosopher Norbert Wiener in an attempt to explain the newfound technological ability to “command and control” machines—including biological organisms.

Noreen Herzfeld, a professor who teaches at the intersection of life and tech at Saint John’s University and College of St. Benedict, spoke with CT recently about whether computers will one day control our human bodies, why embodiment matters, and how bodies and souls are a part of the human system. With degrees in both theology and computer science, she has written numerous books and articles, including In Our Image: Artificial Intelligence and the Human Spirit, Technology and Religion: Remaining Human in a Co-created World, and Religion and the New Technologies. …

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Friendly, Caring, and Carrying Churches

Three steps to move into deeper church community.

We all want our churches to be loving environments. But what does that look like? How do we make that happen?

As I see it, some churches work to be more friendly— and that’s good. Some move beyond being friendly and move to caring— and that’s better. But, I think there is another step. That step is being a carrying church.

Let’s look at the progression.

Friendly churches

It starts with friendly churches.

We need to be intentional about the friendliness of our churches. Nowadays, many churches and church leaders do trainings on how to be a friendly church. A church can be an intimidating environment for newcomers, so we must start taking steps to make everyone feel more comfortable when they enter. We have things like welcoming teams and greeters at the door.

In the past, churches weren’t as intentionally friendly, at least as we would think of friendly today. Oftentimes, no one would greet you at the door; you would just walk in. But now, there are smiling faces opening the door when you enter. Someone says to you, “Hey, good to see you!”

Friendly churches are a step in the right direction in transforming our churches into places that better reflect the love of Christ. It’s nice to feel as though you’ve walked into an approachable and agreeable environment.

But we can go further.

Caring churches

As time passed with more and more churches becoming friendly churches, we began to realize that people weren’t just looking for a friendly church. They were looking for friends. A friendly church doesn’t mean friends. It just means you taught people how to greet one another—which is a good thing, but there’s more to friendship than that.

A friendly church is …

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Democrats won more seats in Arizona House than they have since 1966. Here's how that changes the state

Forget any assumptions you still have about the Arizona Legislature being a hotbed of conservatism. More Democrats will mean more moderation.




Breaking into construction: How an ADOT program attracts women and minorities

More than 90 percent of workers in the construction industry are men. ADOT is working with education and business leaders to change this statistic.