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Speaking of \"Being\"?

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I'm a big fan on the NPR show "Speaking of Faith with Kristi Tippett" (usually broadcast at 7 a.m. Sunday mornings). It's a thoughtful place for journalism and discussion about deep subjects.

Over the summer the show announced a name change to "Being." My first thought was "Blech."

I've since visited the show's website, where host Tippett explains the reasoning behind the name change (and her own trepidation) in a letter to listeners--and a sample of the hundreds of comments from angry and supportive fans.

Lighting the autumn flame

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Very soon the autumn equinox comes. Day and night are of equal length as the Earth tilts away from the sun in the Northern hemisphere. The sun itself rides lower in the sky. Dawns are a little chilly. Sunset comes earlier.

A sure sign of autumn here, and everywhere, is the fire of sumac. This wild plant grows everywhere on roadsides and at the edges of fields, native to almost every area of the world. The name comes almost unchanged from the Arabic down through Old French. The wild species goes unnoticed untl its leaves explode into a deep, vibrant red color as summer wanes.

Crimson is its main color but it also displays a brilliant yellow, a rich orange or an exquisite purple.

Hal Borland, a nature writer who wrote a weekly column in the New York Times for years, comments: "One wonders why the legend-makers never gave it credit for lighting the autumn flame in the forest, setting off the whole blaze of color. Legendary or not, there it stands now, full of cool autumn fire, ready to set the whole woodland aflame."

Seattle archbishop retires; Joliet bishop named successor

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On the wire this morning:

Archbishop Brunett of Seattle retires; Joliet bishop named successor

By Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI has accepted Seattle Archbishop Alex J. Brunett's resignation and appointed Bishop J. Peter Sartain of Joliet, Ill., as his successor.

The changes were publicized in Washington Sept. 16 by Archbishop Pietro Sambi, apostolic nuncio to the United States.

Archbishop Brunett, who was named to Seattle in 1997, is 76 years old. Under canon law, bishops must submit their retirement at age 75.

Archbishop Sartain, who is 58, has headed the Joliet Diocese since 2006. Before that he was the bishop of Little Rock, Ark., for about six years.

MORE TO COME

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