Controversial convert

The latest episode in Pope Benedict’s tumultuous relationship with the Muslim world is controversy over the conversion to Catholicism of Egyptian-born journalist Magdi Allam, an outspoken critic of his former faith whom Benedict personally baptized at the Vatican on the day before Easter. Among those criticizing the high-profile baptismal ceremony was one of the 138 […]

Pope marks Easter with nod to Muslims, China

c. 2008 Religion News Service VATICAN CITY _ Easter is the most sacred feast in the Christian calendar, when believers of all denominations celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus. But for Pope Benedict XVI, this year’s Easter celebrations were fraught with significance for the Catholic Church’s relations with the non-Christian world _ particularly Islam […]

Pope marks Easter with nod to Muslims, China

c. 2008 Religion News Service Judge rules against woman seminary professor (RNS) A federal judge in Texas has ruled against a former professor at a prominent Southern Baptist seminary who said she was dismissed because of her gender. Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary was within its rights when it decided not to renew the contract of […]

Pope marks Easter with nod to Muslims, China

c. 2008 Religion News Service (UNDATED) This is the time of year when the Catholic Church enjoys the greatest growth spurt of the entire year _ an estimated 150,000 adult converts who were baptized or confirmed into the church on Easter. A recent survey shows 44 percent of Americans now profess a religious affiliation that’s […]

Another Award for the Dalai Lama’s Mantel …

The Dalai Lama may be at odds with the Chinese troops currently stationed in his homeland, but the good folks at Hofstra University think he deserves the inaugural $50,000 prize for fostering interfaith harmony. Hofstra gave the exiled leader of Tibetan Buddhism the Guru Nanak Prize on Monday, and His Holiness will accept it in […]

Easter at the Lincoln Memorial

In case you (like most of us) were still sleeping when the sun crept over the U.S. Capitol on Easter morning, Lee Love has some smart pics of the Easter Sunrise Service at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington …

Martin Marty’s Picks for Mt. Preachmore

Martin Marty, the unparalleled scholar of American religious history at the University of Chicago, lists his top preacher picks to replace Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson and Roosevelt on Mt. Rushmore: Walter Rauschenbush, Harry Emerson Fosdick, Reinhold Niebuhr, Martin Luther King, Jr., and William Sloane Coffin. They all preached to many classes of people, including those powerful […]

Conan the Buddhist dog

Those who believe in reincarnation may take a special look at a Zen Buddhist temple in southern Japan, where a young Chihuahua named Conan prays with the monks. The 18-month-old black-and-white pup joins in the daily prayers at the temple, sitting up on his hind legs and putting his front paws together before the altar. […]

Clinton’s Jeremiah Wright Problem

Seems Barack Obama isn’t the only candidate with a Jeremiah Wright problem. The Politico (and the NY Times) is reporting that Obama’s fire-breathing pastor had a meet-and-greet with Bill Clinton at the White House back in 1998. It’s the date people would probably remember more for Clinton’s mea culpa for the Monica Lewinsky scandal: “I […]

Jerusalem Turf Battles and Straight Shuls

Couple of good stories this week from The Forward, the New York-based Jewish newspaper: Straight Shuls: When Gayanne Geurin Weiss and her husband went looking for an Atlanta synagogue to join, they soon found one that had everything they wanted; it was warm, friendly and spiritual. There was just one catch: It was for gay […]