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Petty Gossip?

I am on the road to Rome, but have paused to check my location against the sun. At the moment it seems High Noon in Vatican City, where the Pope - on the ropes - stares unblinking out at a secular world that doesn't seem to get his POV. What the current Pope calls "petty gossip" is, to the world at large, a rather serious moral and criminal fault - indecision or even cover-up regarding child sex abuse cases, on a horrific, even epic, institutional level. The world has unfairly equated the Church uniquely with perversion, when, in fact, all organisations, and walks of life, conceal such predators - but the Church does bear especial responsibility for veiling its culpability behind a uniquely (once strong) moral position, quickly eroding, perhaps gone forever.

The Rock on which the Church is built has been battered by a sea of allegations. The Pope, it seems, is in danger of a Marie Antoinette moment (let them eat cake). By thinking the crowds want crumbs, when in fact they bay for blood, things could get Barabbas-bad. It may be the Pope (by all accounts a good if seriously doctrinal man) didn't himself engage in cover-up. In which case he should have no problem doing more to reassure his flock and the wider wolves beyond. Otherwise, his Golgotha may loom sooner than expected. Which would be a shame. Good man Jesus deserves better from his kingdom on Earth.

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Announcing the Shortlist for the 2016 Sexton PrizeSeptember 13, 2016 / By Kelly Davio
Eyewear Publishing is pleased to announce the shortlist for the 2016 Sexton Prize. The finalists are, in no particular order, as follows:

HISTORY OF GONE, Lynn Schmeidler
SEVERE CLEAR, Maya Catherine Popa
SIT IN THE DARK WITH ME, Jesse Lee Kercheval

The shortlist was selected by Eyewear’s Director Todd Swift with Senior Editor Kelly Davio. Don Share of Poetry Magazine will select the winning manuscript, which will be released at the 2017 AWP conference in Washington, D.C. The winner will be announced in October. 
Congratulations to our finalists!