The supervisor of New York congregations for the United Church of Christ has been nominated to become the denomination’s next general minister and president. Geoffrey Black is expected to be presented to the UCC General Synod this summer as successor to John H. Thomas, who has served since 1999 and is not eligible for reelection.
The American Jewish population is 20 percent higher than previously reported, according to a new study released by the Brandeis University Steinhardt Social Research Institute. The institute estimated that there are 6 million to 6.4 million Jews living in the United States, along with another million people with Jewish ancestry.
The choice between preventing AIDS by teaching abstinence or by distributing condoms is a false choice, Democratic senator Barack Obama of Illinois said to a mostly evangelical conference held at the southern California megachurch founded by pastor-author Rick Warren.
Ten years ago, the World Council of Churches said the AIDS pandemic “exposes the complicity and complacency of churches, challenging them to be better involved, more active, and more faithful.” As World AIDS Day arrived December 1, religious leaders were cautiously optimistic that the moral and political will to fight the pandemic is finally being mobilized.
More than 300 religious leaders have signed up to form a new network of Muslim and Christian groups from 20 Arab countries, responding as a “united force” to the mounting prevalence of HIV/AIDS in their region.
The First Network of Arab Religious Leaders Responding to AIDS was launched in Cairo on November 9 under the acronym CHAHAMA.
A three-day United Nations meeting on the global AIDS pandemic has ended with a declaration that some diplomats praised as a landmark but that AIDS activists—including at least one prominent religious figure—called a failure.
Welcoming news that the Vatican is considering approving condom use by those with HIV/AIDS, a South African Catholic bishop fighting the pandemic said April 25 that the church must look beyond its teaching on sexual conduct to regard condom use as an “ethical imperative.”
After two years of acrimonious debate, Canada’s House of Commons on June 28 passed a controversial same-sex marriage bill. If approved as expected by Canada’s Liberal-dominated Senate this month, the bill will allow same-sex couples to marry, making the country only the fourth in the world to recognize homosexual marriage.