10 things to know on this morning-after-the-Oscars.

1. Highlights from the celebrity night:

Lupita Nyong'o at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons via Wikimedia

Lupita Nyong’o at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons via Wikimedia (Image source)

The Oscars’ most beautiful line from an acceptance speech last night came from “12 Years a Slave” actress Lupita Nyong’o, who won best supporting actress: “It doesn’t escape me for one moment that so much joy in my life is thanks to so much pain in someone else’s.”

Matthew McConaughey was one of the few to mention God in his acceptance speech for best actor. “First off, I want to thank God, because that’s who I look up to,” he said. “He has graced my life with opportunities that I know are not of my hand or another human hand. He has shown me that it’s a scientific fact that gratitude reciprocates.”

And Darlene Love received a standing ovation for her brief but beautiful rendition of the gospel hymn “His Eye is on the Sparrow.”

(Watch for Laura Turner’s roundup soon.)

2. Moving on to much more important issues: Russia’s military advances into the Ukraine has put everyone on alert. Secretary of State John Kerry will visit Kiev on Tuesday in a gesture of support for the new Ukrainian government as Obama called on Saturday for Russia to withdraw. If you’re just catching up, here’s a primer on why Crimea is central to the conflict.

3. North Korea has freed John Short, a 75-year-old Australian missionary whom it detained last month.

4. From today’s front page of the New York Times, ministers from all denominations are helping passengers in dire straits financially and spiritually at the airport. And from yesterday’s front page, since the LDS church has lowered its age requirement for female missionaries, thousands of women have signed up, signaling a growing role for Mormon women.

5. Creation Museum founder Ken Ham announced that thanks to his debate with Bill Nye, a municipal bond offering has brought in enough money to begin the long-delayed Noah’s Ark theme park near the Kentucky-Ohio border.

6. London Mayor Boris Johnson says religious radicalization should be treated as child abuse, that children under radicalization should be taken away from their parents.

7. Google lost an emergency bid to keep the controversial “Innocence Of Muslims” film on YouTube.

8. A Virginia priest who ousted the Cub Scouts over gays kept its popcorn money for a Christian group. Meanwhile, Disney has ended its funding for Boy Scouts over its ban on gay adult leaders.

9. United Church of Christ churches have proposed a boycott of Redskins unless the team changes its name.

10. Hundreds of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews held a mass prayer in Jerusalem on Sunday in protest of a bill that would cut their community’s military exemptions.

Bonus: A Kentucky church is luring people in by giving away guns.

Extra bonus: Keep going with recaps with Brian Pellot’s religious freedom roundup.

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. Religious radicalism is a big problem in many homes, along with other behavior. But if you take the children, where do you put them, and how do you justify tearing them away from people they either love or have some love for?

    Somewhere in the past I read about a “Foster Grandparents” program in Colorado. Mature couples, after training, adopted , in the role of “grandparents,”young single women with abusive tendencies. The genius of the program was that the grandparents were there to support the mother emotionally, and getting involved in practical ways (babysitting, showing how to cook nutritious meals, showing mom how to read to the kids, etc.) By their paying attention and supporting the mother, her treatment of the kids increased improved.

    Stressed or confused parents need people to be therein the home for them to SHOW them a better way. Wouldn’t it be great if London were to recruit religiously observant couples for a similar program?

    The Colorado foster grandparents reminded me of a program I witnessed in the South Bronx when I was growing up, the Visiting Nurse program. Nurses would come into the homes of at-risk new mothers, help out and teach in practical ways, and recruit neighbors to be helpers too. The help of the neighbors would continue after the nine month or so visits of the Nurse. As a result my mother became an “aunt” to about five young mothers (I was the youngest, my mother in her 40’s when I was born.)

    We need a national version of the Visiting Nurses program.

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