The devastation has created mounds of rubbish. Photo by Pio Arce, courtesy World Vision

The devastation has created mounds of rubbish. Photo by Pio Arce, courtesy World Vision

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Thousands of people are feared dead in the Philippines as surviving residents struggle to find food, water and shelter. People are filling up a hospital’s chapel, where just 70 workers of 300 have been showing up to work. “We have no other place that’s available at the moment, and of course it’s a place where people can find comfort” in this heavily Catholic country, says Faith Alianze, a doctor.

On a Veterans Day broadcast program, Kenneth Copeland and David Barton told listeners that soldiers should never experience guilt or PTSD after returning from serving in the military.

Are there really 100,000 new Christian martyrs every year? BBC looks at the facts. Judd Birdsall says Christians must be more realistic in reporting.

Tennessee regulations do not include a provision for churches to have venomous snakes, so the Rev. Andrew Hamblin of the National Geographic series “Snake Salvation” is taking up the cause.

The U.S. Catholic bishops stuck with tradition in electing Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., and Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Houston to lead the hierarchy.

The first Muslim exercise DVD has apparently hit the U.S. market.

A rabbi returned $98,000 he found in a desk purchased on Craigslist.

CNN Money profiles Christian financial adviser Dave Ramsey, advising readers to save like Ramsey, not invest like Ramsey.

Ithaca College professor Rachel Wagner argues that first-person shooter video games (like “Call of Duty”) work like religious rituals.

Religious and labor leaders joined immigration activists at the launch of the “Fast for Families: A Call for Immigration Reform and Citizenship.” Today, President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Valerie Jarrett, Cecilia Munoz and Melissa Rogers will join Leith Anderson, Russell Moore, Gabriel Salguero, Joel Hunter and other religious leaders to discuss immigration.

Casey Cep writes on Flannery O’Conner’s “Prayer Journal” for the New Yorker. And here’s NPR on the book.

Jesus’ trial and crucifixion were legal at the time, a 300-page study has concluded.

Oakland University, in suburban Detroit, says a former women’s basketball coach physically and emotionally abused players and pushed her Christian beliefs on them before she was fired.

Religious couples in the UK fear discrimination when they apply to adopt (subscription required).

John Tavener, a composer informed by Orthodox Christianity, has died.

In celebrity news, Miley Cyrus is planning a trip to Israel next year. Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence stopped during the premiere to comfort a girl in a wheelchair.

Richard Cohen’s Washington Post column on the tea party is making a lot of people mad over his description of how cultural conservatives might have a gag reflex when considering interracial marriage.

Categories: Beliefs

Sarah Pulliam Bailey

Sarah Pulliam Bailey

Sarah Pulliam Bailey is a national correspondent for RNS, covering how faith intersects with politics, culture and other news. She previously served as online editor for Christianity Today where she remains an editor-at-large.


  1. Christian and conservative sources get paid to push certain investments by dodgy companies that knowledgeable people avoid. It’s all about the preacher getting prosperous.

  2. Unfortunately, you are right Mr. Mcgrath! I wish you weren’t but if there’s money to be made by fleecing the flock then it’s time to get the shears out. The whole martyrs thing annoys me as well. Inflating the numbers to bolster your cause or to raise money does a great disservice to the real martyrs who do sacrifice their freedom and lives around the globe. But, like I said, if theres money to be made…

  3. Oh, do also want to say how much I appreciate Ms. Bailey’s writings and contributions here on these pages. You have a great staff of writers here. Keep up with the good reporting and work. Know that we appreciate it!

  4. I’m surprised that no one else has picked up on how insulting it was for the TV station to liken Rabbi Noah Muroff to “the Good Samaritan.” The parable to which that name refers comes from the New Testament and was one of Jesus’s wisdom stories. I can’t imagine that a Jewish rabbi would feel comfortable having a Christian parable used in reference to his action when Judaism also clearly has moral laws about profiting from others (how about “Thou shall not steal”?).

    To add insult to injury, the TV reporters are even more biblically ignorant for not knowing — or at least researching — the fact that Samaritans and Jews were enemies during Jesus’ time. So they’re commending a Jewish rabbi by likening him to an enemy from the Jewish past? Shameful, sloppy “infotainment.”

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