By Richard Mouw, Religion News Service|
May 26, 2017
DRIEBERGEN, Netherlands (RNS) Once a year in the Netherlands, joggers in the park stop running for two minutes. Bicyclists pull over to the side of the road. Television sets and radios are turned off. Parents hush their children. And in many villages and cities people congregate in public spaces for a communal ceremony.
By Kimberly Winston, Religion News Service|
May 18, 2017
DAVIS, Calif. (RNS) When Ian Johnson first went to China as a student three decades ago, he pronounced religion there “dead.”
But Johnson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist now based in Berlin and Beijing, has witnessed a transformation, one he documents in “The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao,” published in April.
In January, Republican Mike Parson took the oath of office as Missouri’s 47th Lieutenant Governor. A member of First Baptist Church in Bolivar, Mo., his ascension makes him the highest-serving Baptist in Missouri’s government. Word&Way Editor Brian Kaylor sat down with Parson for an interview in the Lieutenant Governor’s office in the Capitol.
On May 4, President Donald Trump signed an executive order on “promoting free speech and religious liberty.” Using a National Day of Prayer event at the White House for the political act, Trump signed an order he claimed would give “our churches their voices back” and “not allow people of faith to be targeted, bullied or silenced anymore.” Yet, supporters and critics alike note his executive order actually does little, instead outlining a general philosophy. Many Baptists quickly responded to the new executive order.
By Adelle M. Banks, Religion News Service|
May 4, 2017
(RNS) As President Trump readies a much-anticipated executive order on religious liberty, critics are lined up to take action before he even signs it.
Legal and religious experts say that the rights of women, LGBT people and religious minorities will be threatened by the new order but their fears are based on a draft of the order leaked earlier this year.
A decade ago, the Missouri Baptist Convention sought to remove moderate churches by adopting a policy requiring single alignment with the MBC and Southern Baptist Convention. Now MBC leaders appear to be violating those rules while accepting fundamentalist churches into membership.
By Kimberly Winston, Religion News Service|
April 28, 2017
(RNS) While politics and media both agree the "first 100 days" period is essentially meaningless in terms of predicting the eventual success of a presidency, neither is willing to ignore it.
One thing that is clear so far: White evangelical Christians, who helped put President Trump in the White House and who will be affected by many of his policies, both promised and delivered, remain his staunchest allies.
By Holly Hollman, Religion News Service|
April 25, 2017
(RNS) After a year of anticipation, the Supreme Court heard oral argument this week in a case involving religious liberty, federalism and original intent. The justices did so despite a recent development that changed the dynamics of the dispute.
By Yonat Shimron, Religion News Service|
April 19, 2017
NEW YORK (RNS) At the top of one of the hardwood sculptures currently on view at The Met Cloisters in Manhattan stands Jesus, flanked by saints and angels, two of whom are blowing the final trumpets. Beneath them, carved in deep relief, are souls in purgatory, prodded by demons, moaning as their fate is decided. At the sculpture’s base is the gaping maw of hell consuming someone.
Even if this were a normal-size work of art, the detailed, perfectly balanced presentation of its 50-plus figures would be remarkable.
Paul Msiza, a South African pastor serving as president of the Baptist World Alliance for 2015-2020, traveled to Jefferson City, Mo., in March. During his visit, he stopped by the Word&Way offices for an interview with Editor Brian Kaylor.
By Brent Landau, Religion News Service|
April 13, 2017
(The Conversation) This Sunday, April 16, Christians will be celebrating Easter, the day on which the resurrection of Jesus is said to have taken place. The date of celebration changes from year to year.
Easter is quite similar to other major holidays like Christmas and Halloween, which have evolved over the last 200 years or so. In all of these holidays, Christian and non-Christian (pagan) elements have continued to blend together.