COMMENTARY: Accepting the downfall of a hero

c. 1998 Religion News Service (Samuel K. Atchison is an ordained minister and has worked as a policy analyst and social worker to the homeless. He currently is a prison chaplain in Trenton, N.J.) UNDATED _ In his book,”Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65″(Simon & Schuster), Taylor Branch, using recently declassified material, […]

COMMENTARY: Looking for a few good men of God

c. 1998 Religion New Service) (Dale Hanson Bourke is publisher of Religion News Service.) UNDATED _ Like most children of his time and place, Don McKinnon dutifully attended Sunday school. But despite the best intentions of his teachers, he couldn’t stand it. For a bright and active boy, sitting still while listening to Bible stories […]

COMMENTARY: The continuing failure of the public schools

c. 1998 Religion News Service (Andrew M. Greeley is a Roman Catholic priest, best-selling novelist and a sociologist at the University of Chicago’s National Opinion Research Center. Check out his home page at or contact him via e-mail at agreel(at) UNDATED _ The purveyors of conventional wisdom have been rushing once again to rescue […]

RNS Daily Digest

c. 1998 Religion News Service Robertson, IRS settle tax case over political activities (RNS) Ending a 12-year-old tax and politics case, Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network has reached a settlement with the Internal Revenue Service that calls for CBN to make a”significant payment”to the IRS but preserves the organization’s tax-exempt status. The settlement, announced Monday […]

COMMENTARY: Tell me an old, old story

c. 1998 Religion News Service (Dale Hanson Bourke is the publisher of Religion News Service) UNDATED _ We are assaulted by e-mail, bombarded by phone messages. News bites inform us and sitcoms entertain us. Beepers and car phones ensure we are always within reach. But despite the dizzying technological advances, part of us remains unreached. […]

NEWS FEATURE: American atheists a diverse, fractious lot

c. 1998 Religion News Service POCOPSON, Pa. _ Margaret Downey says her friends tell her she looks so wholesome she could crash a Christian Coalition meeting, and the mere mention of Madalyn Murray O’Hair, the nation’s best-known atheist, who disappeared in 1995, makes her recoil. “Mad, mad Madalyn,” she said. O’Hair, Downey believes, bullied her […]

COMMENTARY: Kosovo: It’s neither a melon nor Monica’s cousin

c. 1998 Religion News Service (Dale Hanson Bourke is publisher of Religion News Service.) (RNS) Balkanize. The word has found a place in American pop culture, stretching its meaning to fit anything that is divided and dysfunctional. But a better definition might be disinterested. Mention the Balkans themselves and the average American’s eyes glaze over.”What […]

NEWS STORY: Report: One in 10 Americans received food aid last year

c. 1998 Religion News Service WASHINGTON _ The nation’s largest hunger-relief organization said Tuesday (March 10) that last year more than 21 million Americans _ roughly one in 10 _ routinely received aid from food assistance programs, including food stamps, food banks and soup kitchens. Additionally, women, children, the elderly and the working poor are […]

RNS Daily Digest

c. 1998 Religion News Service Proposal to ease Presbyterian ordination standards unofficially fails (RNS) A proposal to ease the sexual standards required of pastors, elders and deacons in the Presbyterian Church (USA) has failed, according to unofficial tallies by interest groups on both sides of the issue. The proposal, known as Amendment A, was sent […]