Jim Winkler resigns as head of National Council of Churches

The National Council of Churches announced on Janu­ary 26 that Jim Winkler, its general secretary and president since 2013, is leaving his post.

Winkler told readers of the Protestant ecumenical organization’s e-newsletter of his departure, writing in a “final column” that “I have completed two terms as president and general secretary and now move to the next chapter of my life.”

He did not cite a reason for his departure. Winkler also did not re­spond to a request to comment on his move.

Global Buddhist spiritual leader Thich Nhat Hanh dies at 95

Thich Nhat Hanh, global Buddhist spiritual leader and longtime Viet­namese political exile, died on January 22. He was 95.

He had been in declining health and returned to Vietnam three years ago, expressing a wish to spend his remaining days at his root temple in Hue.

Thich Nhat Hanh spent 39 years in exile from Vietnam because of pro-peace advocacy that put him in conflict with both the North and South Vietnamese governments during the Vietnam War. He also criticized US involvement in the war.

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Famed medieval Jewish woman recognized with new statue

She was one of the most wealthy fi­nanciers of her day, known to the kings of England and described as the most important Jewish woman of medieval England. She was also brutally murdered in what may have been a 13th-century hate crime.

Now, a statue of Licoricia is to be unveiled in the historic city of Winchester, both to celebrate her achievements and to alert people to Britain’s dark and often forgotten antisemitic past.

Princeton Theological Seminary removes slaveholder name from chapel

Princeton Theological Seminary’s board has unanimously voted to dissociate the name of slaveholder and anti-abolitionist Samuel Miller from the school’s chapel.

The decision on January 25 follows actions by the seminary’s Association of Black Seminarians and allies, who wrote a petition and held demonstrations asking the board to rename the chapel.

Christian community in Nigeria counts losses after flood incident

When Emmanuel Nkwea left his house for his farm on a Saturday morning in September 2021, he was hoping to return with food items for his family. But disaster struck in Aponmu—a small, mostly Christian community in Nigeria’s southwestern state of Ondo—and Nkwea’s house was destroyed in a flood.

“The disaster of that morning shattered me. I was left with nothing after the incident,” Nkwea said. “The water swept away my properties and also destroyed the house where I have been staying for over 20 years.”

Claremont School of Theology ordered to offer land to neighboring colleges

According to the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Claremont School of Theology must offer its Claremont, California, campus for sale to the Claremont Colleges, a neighboring consortium of schools—and for a price likely to be millions below fair market value.

The financially embattled United Methodist seminary has long been willing to sell its 16.4-acre campus near Los Angeles. But seminary leaders insisted on getting a fair market price, which they put at about $40 million.

Baptist leader calls denial of voting rights ‘evil’

On the day of a major voting rights debate on Capitol Hill, a social justice coordinator for the Progressive National Baptist Convention said fighting for voting rights is an effort to conquer evil.

“This convention practices a ministry of erosion,” said Willie D. Francois III, cochair of its social justice arm, during a January 18 news conference held in Atlanta and livestreamed on the denomination’s social media.