Elizabeth Beyer 5-23-2018

Students from high schools across the country appealed to lawmakers during a forum on gun violence prevention on Capitol Hill. Photo by Elizabeth Beyer

Students from high schools across the country met with Democratic members of Congress Wednesday to discuss gun control reform just days after another shooting claimed the lives of 10 and injured more than a dozen at Santa Fe High School in Texas.

the Web Editors 5-23-2018

Houston Texans linebacker Lamarr Houston and cornerback Kevin Johnson kneel during the anthem, October 29, 2017. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

In the 2016 season, many players followed in the footsteps of San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who began kneeling during the national anthem as a form of protest against police brutality and racial inequality sparking a national debate. 

Image via Adelle M. Banks / RNS

“He’s placed on an emphasis on women’s role in the church that is fast being questioned, even in the confines of the present-day convention, as that letter signed by women asking for something to be done attests,” Leonard said. “These were not moderate, liberal women. These were women who came of age in the SBC and who challenged his particular theology of marriage and spouse abuse.”

Pope Francis leads the Italian conference of bishops (CEI) meeting in the Synod Hall at the Vatican, May 21. REUTERS/Tony Gentile

A Chilean man who suffered clerical sexual abuse has said Pope Francis told him in a private conversation that God had made him gay and loved him that way, according to the Spanish newspaper El Pais.

the Web Editors 5-21-2018

Image via University of Notre Dame

Sister Pimentel spoke on her own experiences as a child of Mexican immigrants and urged graduates to listen to God's call to stand in solidarity with the vulnerable and to be a voice for the voiceless. 

the Web Editors 5-19-2018

Bishop Michael Curry, presiding bishop of the American Episcopal Church, delivered the sermon at the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on Saturday, focusing on God as a source of love — and justice.

Em Steck 5-18-2018

Photo by Elizabeth Beyer/Medill News Service

President Donald Trump promised Friday at a prison reform summit at the White House that a bill to reform the U.S. incarceration system is “going to be strong, it’s going to be good, it’s going to be what everyone wants.” Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, though, said the bill does not do enough to address prison reform, making the passing of a bill less and less likely before the midterm elections.

Ken Chitwood 5-17-2018

A driver drives a car along the street after Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA), the island's power company, said on Wednesday that a major power line failure in southern PuertoRico cut electricity to almost all customers, in San Juan, Puerto Rico April 18, 2018. REUTERS/Gabriel Lopez Albarran

Following up with Juan after a year of struggle in the wake of the storm, he said, “Puerto Ricans are proud, committed, strong, and ‘pa’lante’ (moving forward). And that includes Muslims.” After the destruction of Hurricane Maria, the month of Ramadan, held special meaning for him. It held hope for “renewal.”

Image via Michele Chabin / RNS

“For evangelical Christians the embassy move is part of eschatology,” the expectation of what will transpire at the end of times,” explained Rabbi David Rosen, director of the American Jewish Committee’s Department of Interreligious Affairs. “The return of the Jewish people to their ancestral homeland and the reestablishment of Jewish sovereignty in Jerusalem is seen as a stage ultimately leading to the full messianic era.”

Rebekah Fulton 5-15-2018

Photos from the Poor People's Campaign Launch in D.C.

the Web Editors 5-14-2018

A Palestinian demonstrator reacts during a protest against U.S. embassy move to Jerusalem and ahead of the 70th anniversary of Nakba, at the Israel-Gaza border in the southern Gaza Strip May 14, 2018. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa

U.S. President Donald Trump announced last December plans to relocate the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, in a move to recognize Jersualem as the capital of Israel, upending decades of U.S. policy and outraging Palestinians.

Image via Liz Donovan / RNS

Interpretations of Scripture taught throughout the evangelical world, such as dispensationalism and replacement theology, hold that the repatriation of Jews to the Holy Land is a necessary precursor to Armageddon and the Second Coming of Christ. The creation of the Jewish state, and especially Israel’s seemingly miraculous victory in the Six-Day War, seemed to many evangelicals to be the fulfillment of prophesy. The Second Coming, surely, must be right around the corner.

the Web Editors 5-09-2018

Acting CIA Director Gina Haspel is sworn in prior to testifying at her Senate Intelligence Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 9, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Haspel reportedly led a secret black site in Thailand where torture techniques were used on detainees. She also played a role in destroying videos documenting the torture of detainees, specifically ones tied to the 9/11 attacks.

"This does not establish justice, its establishes injustice," Rev. Barber said, riffing on the Preamble of the Constitution. "This does not provide for the common defense, because it takes away defense from the poorest among us … This does not promote the general welfare, it promotes harm for the least of these."

A file photo of a girl picking up a cupcake as she breaks fast at King Fahad Mosque in Los Angeles, California during Ramadan. Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

Ramadan is a period of fasting and spiritual growth, and is one of the five “pillars of Islam” (the others being the declaration of faith, daily prayer, alms-giving, and the pilgrimage to Mecca). Able-bodied Muslims are expected to abstain from eating, drinking, and sexual relations from dawn to sunset each day of the month.

Photo via SEPAsynod video

First, delegates chose the Rev. Patricia A. Davenport for the office of bishop in Southeastern Pennsylvania, a synod that includes Philadelphia. Then on Sunday, delegates voted for the Rev. Viviane Thomas-Breitfeld, a pastor in Beloit, Wis., to become bishop-elect for the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin.

the Web Editors 5-07-2018

Image via RNS/Adelle M. Banks 

The letter was published May 6 in the wake of a video of Patterson making objectifying comments about a teenage girl in a 2014 sermon and the surfacing of an audio recording of Patterson advising victims of domestic violence not to divorce their spouses. 

Image via Emily McFarlan Miller / RNS

But since the 2016 meeting, many of its smaller U.S. jurisdictions and regional bodies, called annual conferences, have made their own decisions regarding LGBT clergy. Last year, the Mountain Sky Conference elected Karen Oliveto, a married lesbian, as the denomination’s first openly LGBT bishop.

Derek Burnett 5-06-2018

Illustrations by J.D. Reeves

In today’s model, sanctuary functions as a safety valve, a moral check on the state’s pursuit of its own narrow economic and political interests. An increasingly secular state is therefore a driving force behind the practice of sanctuary. Yet the Catch-22 is that a too-secular society will no longer honor the sanctity of the house of worship. Effective church sanctuary, then, rests on a knife’s edge: It requires a Goldilocks zone in which a society is just inhumane enough to ignore the suffering of vulnerable strangers, rendering sanctuary necessary, but just humane enough to refrain from violating the sanctity of its faith communities, rendering sanctuary ineffectual. Not every country in the world exists in that Goldilocks zone.

Image via Stephen Melkisethian / Flickr

Portman’s protest touched a raw nerve not just because of who she is – a world-famous Jewish celebrity and a well-known supporter of Israel – but also because of whom she is seen to represent. Her outspoken opposition to Netanyahu has been portrayed as typical of her generation of young American Jews whose attitudes toward Israel tend to be more critical than that of their parents and grandparents.

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