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Our consumer society’s dependence on instant gratification has infected our religious practice. Advent comes with a countervailing message: Expect God to show up in unexpected places, like a subway car, a Zoom call, or a stable.

The coronavirus has extinguished some traditional holiday cheer at the Illinois Capitol. There will be no Christmas tree nor any holiday displays inside or outside the building.

Gordon Coleman, pastor Mount Vernon Missionary Baptist Church in Callaway County, Missouri, talked with Word&Way after vandals left massive damage on Wednesday to the Black Baptist church founded by enslaved people before the Civil War.

Baptist

Gordon Coleman, pastor Mount Vernon Missionary Baptist Church in Callaway County, Missouri, talked with Word&Way after vandals left massive damage on Wednesday to the Black Baptist church founded by enslaved people before the Civil War.

A historic Black Baptist church in mid-Missouri originally started by enslaved Blacks before the Civil War was hit by vandals Wednesday. The significant damage to Mount Vernon Missionary Baptist Church near Holts Summit in Callaway County is significant.

Two trustees at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Missouri, continued their attacks on Word&Way for reporting about the two-year controversy involving the school and the Missouri Baptist Convention.

Nation

The coronavirus has extinguished some traditional holiday cheer at the Illinois Capitol. There will be no Christmas tree nor any holiday displays inside or outside the building.

Medical debts totaling more than $5.2 million owed by more than 3,200 families in Kansas and Oklahoma have been paid through a project of the United Church of Christ Kansas-Oklahoma Conference, church officials said Tuesday.

Black clergy leaders are joining forces with the United Way of New York City for a new initiative designed to combat the coronavirus’s outsized toll on African Americans through ramped-up testing, contact tracing and treatment management.

World

The Palestinian Health Ministry has recommended strict limits on Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem this year due to the coronavirus outbreak. Celebrations in the biblical town revered by Christians as Jesus’s birthplace are usually attended by thousands of people from around the world.

Pope Francis is supporting demands for racial justice in the wake of the U.S. police killing of George Floyd and is blasting COVID-19 skeptics and media organizations that spread their conspiracies in a new book penned during the Vatican’s coronavirus lockdown.

A German government official warned Tuesday (Nov. 24) that anti-Semitism is emerging as a common position among people protesting pandemic lockdown measures who otherwise come from widely differing political backgrounds.

Faith & Culture

Luther's advice was the subject of a lunch-and-learn session hosted Friday on Zoom by Good Shepherd Church, a congregation in suburban Naperville affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

The Christian Medical & Dental Associations is calling on churches to stop meeting in person and to move their services online. Church members can still read the Bible, sing hymns, and take part in online services from the safety of their homes.

Evangelicals have largely championed the rise of mass incarceration, writes Aaron Griffith in his new book. They've also undertaken novel ministries to try to bring compassion, healing and conversion to those behind bars.

Scriptures in Pictures

As fighting continues between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces in the separatist territory of Nagorno-Karabakh, priests from the Armenian Apostolic Church conducted a blessing and baptism service for soldiers. Such images fit biblical stories. But is this 2 Chronicles 13 or 1 Kings 22?

Exodus 13:20-22 as seen in photos of a caravan of about 10,000 indigenous Colombians traveling to the capital of Cali to express to President Ivan Duque their grievances about violence and government neglect.

Amos 5:16, as seen in photos from the National COVID-19 Remembrance, outside of the White House on Oct. 4, 2020. There were 20,000 empty chairs, each representing 10 Americans who have died from COVID-19.

Editorials

Editor Brian Kaylor reflects on the ministry and impact of Word&Way this year, and he expresses thanks to our readers and donors who helped make it all happen.

As more cities and states consider enacting much-needed mask mandates during the growing coronavirus pandemic, Editor Brian Kaylor urges a healthy view of religious freedom that does not carve out unnecessary and dangerous exemptions.

Editor Brian Kaylor reflects on the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month, and the important role of Christians in bringing peace and the voice of God to a war-filled world.

W&W Voices

Robert Ingold writes a letter to the editor to offer a public apology concerning concerning allegations he made during the Missouri Baptist Convention annual meeting in October.

With November being the month of Thanksgiving, there always seems to be a gratitude or thankfulness challenge that pops up on social media. Columnist Heather Feeler writes about trying a “thank you project.”

Columnist Wade Paris explores the idea of gratitude by imagining a conversation between a curious angel and God as they peek in on several people on Thanksgiving Day.

Other Opinions

Our consumer society’s dependence on instant gratification has infected our religious practice. Advent comes with a countervailing message: Expect God to show up in unexpected places, like a subway car, a Zoom call, or a stable.

Liberty University has long bragged about being one of America’s largest Christian colleges, but this year, even after suffering its first loss by one point on Saturday, it can also boast about its nationally ranked football team. But to get there,

Trump did more than capture White evangelical Christians’ votes: He in many ways became the face of White evangelicalism. But when White Christians fail to stand in solidarity with Black people and immigrants, there is really nothing Christlike about our

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