Up & Coming Weekly

October 06, 2020

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 15 of 24

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM OCTOBER 7-13, 2020 UCW 15 "Heaven and Hell" is one of several books featured on "North Carolina Bookwatch" this month. Religion is every where, even in three important books with North Carolina ties. North Carolina's beloved nove- list Lee Smith takes us back to an earlier time in her novella, "Blue Marlin." Its central charac- ter, Jenny, age 13, deals with her strong but immature religious views as she seeks to have God help her patch up her parents' crumbled marriage. On a trip to Key West, she bargains with God to do good deeds if he will bring her parents together again. Smith says that for all the sto- ries she has ever written, "this one is dearest to me, capturing the essence of my own childhood." The book is also a reminder that Jenny's immature view of God is one that is widely shared and not to be scoffed at. W hat really happens to us when we die? Active churchgoers are caught between two ideas. First is the belief set out in the Apostles' Creed in "the resurrec- tion of the body" and judgment day accounting. Second is the conf licting idea that believers in Christ go directly to heaven when they die while others go straight to a place of punishment that lasts forever. UNC-Chapel Hill religion pro- fessor Bart Ehrman's "Heaven and Hell: A History of the Afterlife" deals with this dilem- ma, and he sets out a detailed history of ideas about afterlife. Ehrman describes how ideas about afterlife developed in many religious traditions. He asserts that Jesus and the Apostle Paul did not believe in hell. The punishment for sinners was, they believed, simply annihilation, not everlasting punishment. Many North Carolinians do not appreciate our state's important place in the history of modern popular music or the inf luence of religion and church music on our music culture. Former Raleigh News & Observer journa- list David Menconi's new book, "Step It Up and Go, The Story of North Carolina Popular Music, from Blind Boy Fuller and Doc Watson to Nina Simone and Superchunk," helps set the record straight. The connections between gospel music, both black and white, run throughout the book. Menconi gives Ray Charles credit for "turning sacred gospel into secular soul, a new style that translated religious rapture into much earthier feelings." Charles transformed a gospel song, "It Must Be Jesus," into a "randy song" called "I Got a Woman." Menconi writes, "Changing that song's subject matter from upper- case him to lowercase her scan- dalized the church, but it caused a pop music sensation." A Winston-Salem group, "The 5 Royales," brought evangelis- tic fervor to secular music even before Charles. The group was one of the top R&B bands in the 1950s. Though forgotten by many, the group is immortalized by a street in Winston-Salem named after them. Menconi writes about a Charlotte group called Jodeci whose "spin on hip-hop soul was churching it up with gospel feeling. W hether pleading for sin or salvation, they had the same urgency." In 1992, one member of Jodeci told Menconi, "Someday I'm sure we'll all go back to gospel becau- se that's where our roots are." Maybe he was speaking for some of the rest of us. Religion: Too much or not enough by D. G. MARTIN LITERATURE D.G. MARTIN, Host of UNC's Book Watch. COMMENTS? Editor@upand- comingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. N O W L EA S I N G Proudly Managed By You Deserve Better. (910) 920-4491 4418-A BLANTON ROAD FAYETTEVILLE, NC 28303 FARADAYANDNORTHUMBERLAND.COM OFFICE HOURS MON, TUES & THURS 8:30AM - 5:30PM S TA R T I N G A T $ 6 0 0/ M O N T H * ONE & TWO BEDROOM APARTMENTS CA L L T O S C H E D U L E A T O U R O R A P P L Y O N L I N E T O DA Y! *PRICING SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE 700 Ramsey St. Fayetteville, NC 28301 • Incredibly Fresh Flowers • Custom Silk Designs • Lovely Plants & Dish Gardens • • Conveniently Located Within Minutes of Fayetteville Hospitals & Funeral Homes Corporate Services: • arrangements • Grand openings • Promotions Flowers Express What Words Cannot www.FloralArtsNC.com 910.822.0425 Celebrating 40 Years of Service Flower for October Calendula

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