From RNS headquarters in Washington — where everything is red, white, blue and crowded — we bring you the Religion News Roundup on this Inauguration/MLK Monday. Stayed tuned to RNS for our take on the inaugural prayers – text and subtext.
Obama began the day, per presidential tradition stretching back to FDR, with a service at St. John’s Episcopal Church, a short walk from the White House across Lafayette Park.
On Sunday, the Constitutionally-mandated actual swearing in day, the Obama family attended services at Washington’s Metropolitan AME Church, where the sermon was about trusting in God.
Rachel Zoll says religious tensions are casting a shadow over the inaugural festivities.
And tomorrow, it’s the National Prayer Service at Washington National Cathedral, led by Methodist preacher Adam Hamilton, who, as our own Dan Burke informs us, started his church in a funeral home.
Clergy are urging flu shots and encouraging congregants to share the Sign of Peace without actually touching one another — just two of the ways that faith leader are trying to ease the suffering this flu season, which came early and hit hard.
The son of a Cavalry Albuquerque former preacher gunned down his father, mother and three of his nine siblings with an assault rifle Saturday night, Christianity Today reports.
That same day, accidental shootings at gun shows in three states leave five people injured. That same day, pro-gun rallies draw thousands to state capitols across the country.
The Vatican on new gun control initiatives in the U.S.: “a step in the right direction.”
In Wisconsin, Punjab Singh, the Sikh priest shot by a white supremacist last summer at the Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, is making slow progress, but likely won’t walk or talk again.
The coal mining town of Vicco, Ky., pop. 334, is likely the smallest in the nation to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Town commissioners voted 3-1, with the lone objector referencing his Christian beliefs.
Pope Benedict XVI this weekend said Catholic charities can’t accept funding from groups that oppose church teachings.
In Bangladesh, a tribunal sentences an Islamic cleric to death for crimes against humanity during that nation’s 1971 war for independence.
Where are Sunday liquor laws strictest? Indiana, reports the Indianapolis Star.
A “godless mom” in Texas gains traction with a blog about raising children without religion.
I haven’t read it for awhile. Today’s a good day. MLK Jr’s Letter From a Birmingham Jail.
- Lauren Markoe