Military chaplains may officiate at same-sex marriage ceremonies on
and off military bases, the Pentagon has announced, in a move that
closely followed the repeal of a ban on openly gay service members.
WAHSINGTON (RNS) Religious freedom advocates rallied Wednesday (Sept.
28) around an Iranian pastor who is facing execution because he has
refused to recant his Christian faith in the overwhelmingly Muslim
The British-based group Christian Solidarity Worldwide has asked
international supporters to urge Iranian officials to halt plans to
execute Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani.
Does the Southern Baptist Convention need a new name? The president
of the nation's largest Protestant denomination, Bryant Wright, who is
also a pastor in Marietta, Georgia, says the idea should be explored
again for the sake of evangelistic success alone.
(RNS) Don't look for children's Sunday school classes at Ridgewood
Church in Port Arthur, Texas. And forget about scavenger hunts and water
park trips: the youth ministry is no more.//
Sound like a dying church?
(RNS) Pop quiz: Who said "We often suffer, but we are never crushed.
Even when we don't know what to do, we never give up"?
According to a recent poll, more Americans attributed the passage to
comic book hero Captain America, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and
former President George W. Bush than its actual source: the New
Testament book of 2 Corinthians.
(RNS) New York-area residents are more spiritually active since 9/11, a
new survey shows, but the uptick in faith may be a matter of coincidence
rather than a religious response to the terrorist attacks.
In a post-9/11 bid to better relations with Muslims, pastor Bob
Roberts invited Muslims to his NorthWood Church in Keller, Texas, for
Q&A sessions and a cooking club and to help on a few home remodeling
projects. The result: Roberts lost "a bunch of church members," he
Prison Fellowship, a prominent evangelical ministry to inmates, has laid off dozens of employees, citing the faltering economy.
total of 72 staffers were let go as part of a restructuring that
included new leaders as of July 18. Jim Liske, a former pastor in
Michigan, is now the ministry's CEO, and Garland Hunt, a former Atlanta
pastor, is now its president.
In the weeks since North Carolina's legislature laid off most of its
prison chaplains, Betty Brown, director of prison chaplaincy services,
has been crisscrossing the state searching for volunteers who can attend
to the religious needs of Native American, Wiccan and Rastafarian
John Stott, a renowned and prolific author credited with shaping 20th-century evangelical Christianity, died July 27 in England at age 90. While not a household name like evangelist Billy Graham, Stott was considered nearly as influential.
WASHINGTON (RNS) President Obama agrees with religious officials'
concerns about protecting the poor as Washington debates the nation's
debt ceiling crisis, according to leaders who met with him this week.
A delegation representing Catholic and Protestant organizations met
with Obama and high-level White House staffers for 40 minutes on
Wednesday (July 20).