Posts Tagged ‘clergy’

Will COVID-19 finally be the end of the church collection plate?

The collection plate is passed during an Easter Sunday service. Photo courtesy of the National Archives April 22, 2021 By Bob Smietana (RNS) — In the 1984 film “Mass Appeal,” Father Tim Farley, played by Jack Lemmon, gives a young, aspiring priest a lesson in church finances. Give a good sermon, and church coffers will fill up.[ READ FULL COLUMN ]

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Barring women as leaders in church may be bad for their health, new study finds

Photo illustration by Christopher Ross/Pixabay/Creative Commons April 19, 2021 By Bob Smietana (RNS) — Going to church is generally touted as good for the soul. But there is also evidence church attendance can be good for your health — unless, that is, you are a woman at a church that bars women from preaching or[ READ FULL COLUMN ]

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Like Beth Moore, many women preachers have had to break free to follow God’s call

Kat Armstrong, left, with her Sunday school teacher, Beth Moore. Photo courtesy of Kat Armstrong March 29, 2021 By Bob Smietana (RNS) — Kat Armstrong didn’t know much about the Bible when she first became a Christian as a teenager. Knowing she was eager to learn, a pastor at First Baptist Church in Houston suggested[ READ FULL COLUMN ]

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America elected a female vice president. Now will it put women in the pulpit?

Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-California, speaks during the third day of the Democratic National Convention, on Aug. 19, 2020, at the Chase Center in Wilmington, Delaware. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) By Ryan Burge Produced in collaboration with the Religion News Service.  (RNS) — One of the most important stories coming out of the[ READ FULL COLUMN ]

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Most congregations are doing all right during COVID-19. But the future is uncertain.

A new study from the Lake Institute on faith and giving found that congregations’ giving was holding up during the pandemic, but barely half had met in person.

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Can churches’ focus on race move from reconciliation to justice?

‘The evangelical pastors that we interviewed, ultimately chose racial reconciliation as their primary frame,’ a scholar said of study of multiracial church leaders.

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Life in the 'purple' zone: Conflict in pews, silence in pulpit

Clergy with a mix of members with “red” and “blue” political views in the pews tend to tread lightly when it comes to preaching on controversial topics in sermons. Abortion, fossil fuels, a critique of capitalism, and LGBTQ issues were more often avoided in the pulpit, a new study found.

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In multiracial churches, pastors of color hitting 'the same white wall'

An ideal of multiracial churches is to be a sign of a day when faith transcends color and ethnicity. But are they instead increasing inequality? New findings from the Religious Leadership and Diversity Project find that black and Asian pastors in multiracial churches are “standing on the doorsteps of assimilation only to be ultimately denied entrance through the door of whiteness and access to the privileges enjoyed by the white majority.”

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Global studies reveal 5 ways faith can reduce bullying, empower victims

A new wave of international scholarship addressing public concerns over bullying is extending into religious communities.
Researchers are discovering that congregations are uniquely positioned to offer the type of social support and the promotion of values such as empathy, forgiveness and love of neighbor that appear to be effective ways of addressing the issue.

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Not just a joke: Studies find religious humor can break through prejudice, build social ties

Jokes about religion should be left to the professionals, not the politicians, a comprehensive new survey of religion and humor finds. The research is part of a larger project involving several Scandinavian studies on religion and humor that indicate support for a less hostile, more nuanced approach to religious humor that has the potential to break through the polarization in the West over perceived threats from immigrants and religious minorities.

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