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Archive for the ‘Featured’ Category

Americans support religious freedom — as long as it’s convenient for everyone

Food is prepared for the community kitchen at St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church in Brookings, Oregon, in October 2021. Photo courtesy of St. Timothy’s February 15, 2022 By Ryan Burge   (RNS) — One of the most consequential legal terms in the 21st century may be “religious freedom.” As my colleague University of Cincinnati political scientist

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The deadly dogmatism of Christian nationalism

People shelter in the House gallery as protesters try to break into the House chamber at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) January 28, 2022 By Samuel L. Perry (RNS) — As the nation remembered the Capitol riots on Jan. 6 earlier this month, a deluge of articles highlighted

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Scholar: America is still reacting to the religious right, in more ways than one

Photo by Edward Cisneros/Unsplash/Creative Commons January 13, 2022 By Jack Jenkins   WASHINGTON (RNS) — A religion scholar believes major trends in religion and politics can be traced back to the rise of the religious right in the 1990s, a sea change moment that set in motion an array of phenomena ranging from an uptick

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Violence isn’t the only way Christian nationalism endangers democracy

Supporters of President Donald Trump climb the west wall of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. The mob proceeded to breach the Capitol. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana) January 5, 2022 By Samuel L. Perry (RNS) — One year ago at the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, the world witnessed one way

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Does religion make people more likely to welcome refugees? It’s complicated.

Pope Francis meets migrants during his visit at the Karatepe refugee camp, on the northeastern Aegean island of Lesbos, Greece, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino) December 6, 2021 By Carol Kuruvilla (RNS) — On Sunday (Dec. 5), Pope Francis, visiting the Greek island of Lesbos, made an emotional pitch for European states to

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‘Sinning in the Rain’: New study finds crimes go up when it rains on Sundays

Photo by Viacheslav Bida/Unsplash/Creative Commons December 2, 2021 By Bob Smietana (RNS) — To help people avoid sin, pastors often advise prayer, going to church and reading the Bible or other religious books. They might also want to get a few umbrellas. A forthcoming study from the Review of Economics and Statistics found that the

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Why the minichurch is the latest trend in American religion

The Rev. Derek Miller plays guitar and leads worship at Cornerstone Church of Spring Green, Nov. 7, 2021, in Spring Green, Wisconsin. RNS photo by Bob Smietana November 16, 2021 By Bob Smietana SPRING GREEN, Wis. (RNS) — The Rev. Derek Miller has seen the future of the church in America. And it is small.

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Some churches got mega PPP loans. A few got tiny ones.

The Love Power Jesus mural is a well-known landmark in Minneapolis. Image courtesy of Google Maps November 8, 2021 By Bob Smietana (RNS) — When the Rev. Janet Gullickson heard that churches would be eligible for Paycheck Protection Program loans at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, she sprang into action. Gullickson, pastor of Love

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How religious is your average 22-year-old? A new golden age of survey data opens a door.

Photo by Joshua Sortino/Unsplash/Creative Commons November 5, 2021 By Ryan Burge (RNS) — I’m a quantitative scholar of American religion and politics, so I am used to everyone from religion scholars unused to working with data to anxious parents asking me random questions. “Are Latter-day Saints attending church with less frequency in the last few

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Is God good for America? Depends whom you ask.

American flags on display in Boston. Photo by Valentino Funghi/Unsplash/Creative Commons October 14, 2021 By Ryan Burge (RNS) — Richard Rorty, the late philosophy professor, once claimed that religion is a “conversation stopper” — the ideal way to end any debate. For instance, if someone says in a debate, “It’s against God’s law for anyone

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