As Passover begins today, here are 10 items from the weekend you should know.

1. A shooting at two Jewish centers in Kansas City on Sunday left three dead. A Missouri man, with a history of anti-Semitism and a former KKK leader, allegedly shot a boy and his grandfather outside a Jewish community center and a woman at a Jewish assisted living facility nearby.

Geshmirta matzo, in which a cream cheese and sour cream mixture is topped with cinnamon and baked. Photo by Dave Carlin, courtesy of Tina Wasserman’s Cooking and More and Reform

Geshmirta matzo, in which a cream cheese and sour cream mixture is topped with cinnamon and baked. Photo by Dave Carlin, courtesy of Tina Wasserman’s Cooking and More and Reform

This image is available for Web and print publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

2. For more light-hearted Passover-related stories, our friends at Tablet Magazine have cocktail recipes for the 10 plagues. And Lauren Markoe gets lighthearted about unleavened bread (how much matzo can you take?).

Dayeinu (Hebrew for “Enough!”) is the song during the Seder where Jews list an act of God in every verse, thanking the almighty for the Exodus. But you might sing “Enough!” when you play our collection of a cappella Passover parody videos.

3. Christians celebrated Palm Sunday yesterday, gearing up for Easter-related activities this week. Pope Francis abandoned his prepared remarks during his homily, delivering off-the-cuff remarks. He then posed for selfies with young people in the crowd.

4. Religious leaders are gathered with President Obama this morning for an annual Easter Breakfast (Here’s a livestream, or watch RNS for a report later today). Judging from Russell Moore and Rachel Held Evans tweets, looks like it’ll draw a fairly diverse crowd.

5. Elsewhere in politics, could social conservatives be in trouble? Some prominent Republican leaders are making appeals, without mentioning abortion or same-sex marriage.

6. The Vatican is digitizing millions of pages from its priceless manuscripts, opening them to the broader public for the first time.

7. A statue of a homeless Jesus is startling a wealthy community in North Carolina. One woman called the police, believing it was an actual homeless person.

8. A watchdog claims that two advisers to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s charity have links to the Muslim Brotherhood.

9. As secular communities are growing, “atheist church” might not be the right term to call some gatherings.

10. There’s a nun who is addicted to Twitter, using social media to spread the gospel.

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. Zulfiqar Malik

    Kansas City Muslims stand with Jewish community
    April 13, 2014

    The Muslim community of Greater Kansas City is deeply shocked and saddened by the horrific and tragic shootings which resulted in deaths and injuries. We are deeply distressed by this cowardly act which targeted innocent people.

    Muslims have always stood shoulder to shoulder during perilous times that our nation has faced. These attacks do nothing but strengthen our resolve to fight back such cowardly acts and unite us more. Our prayers go out for the fallen victims and to the Jewish community in Greater Kansas City. May the families of the victims have the forbearance and may the inflicted recover from their injuries quickly.

    We also like to commend our law enforcement teams for apprehending the culprit so quickly before he could hurt more people. We are confident that justice will be served.

    Shakil Haider
    Chairman, Midland Islamic Council
    PO Box 3702, Olathe, KS 66063
    Ph: 913-687-3900

  2. Bet that homeless statue of Jesus doesn’t remain there long. How dare someone offend these rich people and remind them that there are actual people out there that are suffering do to no fault of their own. Hey wait, didn’t Jesus himself say something about it being easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than to enter heaven? But the rich have that covered, they actually believe that because they are rich that they are the ones going to heaven instead of the poor unemployed, homeless folks who MUST BE sinners to be so poor or disabled or whatever. Boy, do they have a surprise waiting for them!

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