NEWS FEATURE: Exhibit shows importance of African-American sacred music in American life

c. 1997 Religion News Service CLEVELAND _ A life-size cutout of singer Marian Anderson looms large in a new exhibit at the Western Reserve Historical Society. Rightly so. Even when not listening to her soaring, powerful contralto, Anderson’s story is not only gripping but emblematic of American life. Here was a singer rejected from a […]

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NEWS STORY: Alabama lays claim to longest Christian-Jewish dialogue

c. 1997 Religion News Service MOBILE, Ala. _ It’s not at all unusual in this age of religious pluralism for clergy members of various faiths to get together and hash our their differences while looking for points of agreement. It is uncommon, however, for laity to do so, especially when such dialogue extends beyond a […]

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A pollster’s `index of leading spiritual indicators’

c. 1997 Religion News Service UNDATED _ George Barna, president of the Barna Research Group and author of more than 20 books, has been polling Americans on their spiritual beliefs for more than a decade. In his latest book,”The Index of Leading Spiritual Indicators”(Word), Barna offers a statistical report on the state of religion in […]

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NEWS FEATURE: MARTIN LUTHER KING Jr.: An inconvenient hero, King dared the world to do more than dre

c. 1997 Religion News Service Now that he is safely dead Let us praise him … Dead men make such convenient heroes: They cannot rise to challenge the images we would fashion from their lives. Carl Wendell Himes Jr., 1977 UNDATED _ In the 29 years that have elapsed since his assassination, the Rev. Martin […]

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RNS Daily Digest

c. 1997 Religion News Service Church-state group chides Gingrich for seeking to be”national pastor” (RNS) House Speaker Newt Gingrich, whose recent speeches have been peppered with religious language and what the Georgia Republican says is the need of the nation to be”submissive to God’s will,”has been criticized by a church-state separation group for his remarks.”You […]

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NEWS FEATURE: Clinton has a special affinity with African-American religiosity

c. 1997 Religion News Service WASHINGTON _ President Clinton, a white Southern Baptist with a Roman Catholic education, likes to call Bishop Donne L. Lindsey, the leader of some 135 black Pentecostal churches in Arkansas,”my bishop.” The two men have laughed, cried, worshiped and eaten barbecued ribs together ever since Clinton’s first term as governor […]

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RNS Daily Digest

c. 1997 Religion News Service Billy Graham to give eighth inauguration invocation (RNS) Evangelist Billy Graham is scheduled to give the invocation at President Clinton’s Jan. 20 inauguration ceremony, marking the eighth time he has participated at such an event.”I am both humbled and honored to be invited by President Clinton to again lead the […]

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NEWS STORY: Muslim group issues guide to eliminating job disputes

c. 1997 Religion News Service WASHINGTON _ Last year, a Muslim woman working for a discount retailer in Enfield, Conn., was fired from her job for refusing to remove a head scarf she wore as a sign of Islamic modesty. In Sugarland, Texas, another Muslim woman was threatened with the loss of her job at […]

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NEWS STORY: Vatican, fearing”relativism,“acts more harshly on dissent

c. 1997 Religion News Service VATICAN CITY _ The Rev. Tissa Balasuriya is not a martyr by the Roman Catholic Church’s definition, but the recently excommunicated Sri Lankan priest says he is a victim of the church whose teachings he has spent a lifetime following and promoting.”I act according to my conscience,”Balasuriya said in an […]

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COMMENTARY: The best bishops are experts in two-way communication

c. 1997 Religion News Service UNDATED _”Whatever is going to happen to our poor church?”a woman asked me at a recent dinner party. Like virtually all the social encounters I had with Catholics over the holidays, the conversation was about the late Chicago Cardinal Joseph Bernardin.”What do you mean?”I replied.”All those dried-up old men in […]

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