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Appeals to Christian identity were common during the Trump administration, but with Trump out of office and hundreds of Jan. 6 insurrectionists now facing federal charges, hard-line Christian Nationalists are increasingly fueling their movement with opposition to COVID-19 vaccines and mask mandates.

Pope Francis said Wednesday he didn’t understand why people refuse to take COVID-19 vaccines, saying “humanity has a history of friendship with vaccines,” and that serene discussion about the shots was necessary to help them.

In this issue of A Public Witness, we take a shot at exploring Biden’s new vaccine rules not as partisans, or even as citizens, but as followers of Jesus. Although we’ve advocated for Christians to voluntarily get vaccinated, government mandates raise additional moral issues warranting our consideration.

Douglas Laycock argues that under the general law of religious liberty — including the Constitution and state and federal religious freedom laws — the government has an easy case to refuse religious exemptions from vaccines against infectious disease.

Pope Francis said Wednesday that Catholic bishops must minister to politicians who back abortion with “compassion and tenderness,” not condemnation, and warned that they shouldn’t let politics enter into questions about receiving Communion.

Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, acknowledged Friday that he is “a bit” frustrated with fellow evangelicals who have hesitated or refused to get the vaccine, even as the delta variant has led to an average of more than 1,000 U.S. deaths a day.

Terry Wildman hopes the new translation published Aug. 31 by InterVarsity Press, 'First Nations Version: An Indigenous Translation of the New Testament,' will help Christians and Indigenous peoples read it again in a fresh way.

In this issue of A Public Witness, we look at today’s special California election and the troubling campaign tactic of churches turning over their pulpits on Sundays for campaign speeches. We also offer a reminder that the IRS rule banning such partisan sermons has not been recalled. 

Pope Francis traveled to the far east of Slovakia on Tuesday to meet with the country’s Roma in a gesture of inclusion for the most socially excluded minority group in Slovakia, who have long suffered discrimination, marginalization, and poverty.

St. Nicholas Church was the only house of worship destroyed in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Twenty years later, a shrine replacing it is nearing completion for this Eastern Orthodox congregation,