Muslims to meet on response to Islamophobia

Omar Sacirbey |

(RNS) With the 10th anniversary of 9/11 looming, attendees at North America’s largest Muslim gathering next month will be told that the best way to deal with Islamophobia is not to lay low, but get involved in politics, interfaith work and community affairs. That’s the message that leaders of the Islamic Society of North America […]

Study says Jews volunteer, but not because of `Jewish’ values

Lauren Markoe |

(RNS) Young Jewish Americans volunteer enthusiastically for a multitude of causes, but the vast majority do not connect their service to their Jewish identity, Jewish institutions or Israel. These findings, from a survey released Thursday (June 23), both hearten and concern Jewish leaders. “The good news is that this is an idealistic, motivated population,” said […]

Evangelicals see declining influence in U.S.

Adelle M. Banks |

(RNS) Are U.S. evangelicals losing their influence on America? A new poll released Wednesday (June 22) from the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life seems to say just that, with the vast majority — 82 percent — of U.S. evangelical leaders saying their influence on the country is declining. At the same time, their […]

Churches call for U.S. to pull out of Afghanistan

Jack Jenkins |

WASHINGTON (RNS) As President Obama prepared plans to bring a limited number of U.S. troops home from Afghanistan, a group of 40 religious leaders called for the president to “bring the war in Afghanistan to an end.” Signers of an open letter, including high-profile religious leaders like Sojourners founder Jim Wallis, expressed frustration over the […]

Leaving God out of Pledge tees off Ohio congressman

Sabrina Eaton |

WASHINGTON (RNS) NBC’s decision to edit the word “God” from the Pledge of Allegiance during last weekend’s coverage of the U.S. Open golf tournament has teed off an Ohio congressman, who wants the U.S. Golf Association to reconsider its relationship with the television network. “When we silence the name of God, we dim the light […]

Wednesday’s Religion News Roundup

As President Obama prepares to speak tonight about withdrawing some troops from Afghanistan, a group of mostly liberal faith leaders are calling on him to bring them all home and end the Afghan war. “The past ten years have shown that we cannot broker peace in Afghanistan by military force,” the leaders say. On the […]

Americans distinguish between politicians’ financial, sexual failings

Lauren Markoe |

WASHINGTON (RNS) Americans are tougher on politicians for their financial misdeeds than their sexual ones, but men are more willing than women to tolerate sexual misbehavior in their elected officials. The findings, released Wednesday (June 22) in a detailed survey by the Public Religion Research Institute, show that Americans across religious groups consider it worse […]

Critics push Obama to change faith-based hiring rules

Lauren Markoe |

WASHINGTON (RNS) A group of clergy and lawmakers is trying to overturn a nearly decade-old policy that allows faith-based organizations that receive federal funds to hire and fire employees on the basis of religion. Critics say President Obama has reneged on a campaign promise to repeal the policy, which was put into place by President […]

Conservatives want senator to resign after affair

Jonathan Tilove |

WASHINGTON (RNS) The president of the Christian conservative Family Policy Network sent Sen. David Vitter, R-La., a letter Monday (June 20) calling on him to follow the lead of former Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., and resign rather than leave Republicans and conservatives open to charges of hypocrisy. Vitter admitted to a “serious sin” in 2007 […]

Orthodox basketball play allowed to cover her arms

Michele Chabin |

JERUSALEM (RNS) The international basketball federation has decided to permit an Orthodox Jewish basketball player to cover her arms during competitions in accordance with her religious beliefs. FIBA made the decision several weeks after point guard Naama Shafir, a member of the Israeli national women’s basketball team, said she would be unable to play in […]