Tibetans mark their new year with a protest

NYT |

TONGREN, China: It was an auspicious start to Losar, the Tibetan New Year: Snow fell across this mountain valley as red-robed Buddhist monks in a prayer hall began chanting and beating drums. But a monk watching the ritual Wednesday morning wanted to make one thing clear: The ceremony was one of mourning, not of celebration. […]

No. 1, meet No. 2

Arkansas churches finally have something in common with bars: Church goers cannot carry concealed weapons into their places of worship. While the State House approved a measure allowing concealed weapons to be taken to church, the bill died when the Arkansas state judiciary committee stalled its passage. The issue raises some interesting church-state questions.The First […]

Study: Terror fight must include battle of ideas

Lolita C. Baldor/AP |

WASHINGTON (AP) – A task force of Middle East experts is urging the Obama administration to work within Muslim communities in the United States to counter extremism and prevent Islamic militant groups from gathering new recruits.

Imams unable to grasp needs of Western Muslims: report

Marina Jimenez/The Globe and Mail |

Imams are out of touch with the needs of Western Muslims, and divorced from the struggles their congregants face in secular society, according to a new report from a leading Canadian scholar.

Catholic movement rocked by news of founder’s scandal

Bruce Nolan |

NEW ORLEANS — Hundreds of Louisiana families affiliated with a conservative lay spiritual movement within the Catholic Church have been rocked by revelations that the movement’s revered priest-founder for decades led a secret life — and has a daughter. An estimated 200 families in New Orleans and Baton Rouge belong to Regnum Christi, said Jim […]

COMMENTARY: Purim will fall amid grim backdrop of anti-Semitism

A. James Rudin |

(UNDATED) As a child growing up in post-World War II America, the Jewish holiday of Purim was always filled with costume parties, satirical skits, carnivals, tasty sweets, and gaiety. The highlight of the holiday, to be celebrated March 10 this year, is the public reading of the Megillah (the scroll containing the biblical book of […]

CREW files Brownback complaint

Glenn Thrush/Politico |

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a nonpartisan good-government group, filed a Senate ethics complaint against Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) over the use of faux Senate letterhead in a fundraising letter on behalf a conservative Catholic group.

Return to sender?

National Catholic Reporter has received a fundraising letter lambasting liberal Catholics and bearing Kansas Senator Sam Brownback’s signature. The letter’s from Catholic Advocate, a conservative Washington-based group. The undated Brownback letter names many prominent Catholic Democrats and accuses them of abandoning the Catholic faith in their support for The Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA). Moneyquote: […]

10 Minutes with … David T. Olson

G. Jeffrey MacDonald |

(UNDATED) Booming megachurches might grab headlines, but the bigger story of American congregations is one of accelerating decline, according to David T. Olson, director of the American Church Research Project. Based on data collected from more than 200,000 churches, he projects that by 2050, only 10 percent of Americans will be in church on any […]