Latest Religion News

Southern Baptists oust one church for having woman pastor, two others over sexual-abuse policy

Feb. 20, 2024 20:59 PM EST

The Southern Baptist Convention's top administrative body voted Tuesday to oust four congregations — one for having a woman as senior minister, two for what it said were failures related to the denomination's sexual-abuse policy and one for lack of financial participation. The...

For Black ‘nones’ who leave religion, what’s next?

Feb. 20, 2024 16:06 PM EST

(RNS) — When Black Americans leave religion, it’s rarely a clean break. Take Rogiérs Fibby, a self-described agnostic, atheist and secular humanist who grew up in the Moravian Church. The head of the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Black Secular Collective, Fibby also considers...

Every week is World Interfaith Harmony Week for devotees of Swami Vivekananda

Feb. 20, 2024 15:51 PM EST

NEW YORK (RNS) — At a Sunday morning service on Sunday (Feb. 4), a priest gave a sermon, a choir sang devotional hymns and a congregation bowed heads in a joint prayer. It was a typical Sunday for these faithful New Yorkers. Yet rather than a church, this service took place at a...

The suspects in a Kenyan doomsday cult are ordered to be hospitalized after a hunger strike

Feb. 20, 2024 12:53 PM EST

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A Kenyan magistrate Tuesday ordered the main suspect in a doomsday starvation cult and 94 of his followers to receive emergency care after some of the suspects had to be carried into the courtroom to answer manslaughter charges, too frail and weak to "even open their eyes"...

New York Archdiocese denounces transgender activist's funeral held at St. Patrick's Cathedral

Feb. 20, 2024 12:33 PM EST

The funeral of a renowned transgender activist in a New York cathedral elicited a denunciation of the event by a senior church official, who called the Mass a scandal within one of the preeminent houses of worship in U.S. Catholicism. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York...

The Vatican's problematic process to address clergy sex abuse cases, explained

Feb. 20, 2024 09:04 AM EST

VATICAN CITY (AP) — One afternoon in mid-December, Pope Francis had a meeting that wasn’t on his official agenda or otherwise recorded, that underscored the utter dysfunction of the Catholic Church’s response to the global clergy sex abuse scandal. In the main reception room of...

A prayer for Evita: Here's why many Argentines are devoted to a first lady who died in 1952

Feb. 19, 2024 16:04 PM EST

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Early every morning, just as she reaches her workplace at a labor union in Buenos Aires, Ángeles Celerier heads to the chapel and prays to Saint Cajetan, Saint Teresa and Eva Perón. Perón — unlike the others — has not been canonized by the...

The keeper of the Vatican’s secrets is retiring. Here’s what he wants you to know

Feb. 19, 2024 04:05 AM EST

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican has been trying for years to debunk the idea that its vaunted secret archives are all that secret: It has opened up the files of controversial World War II-era Pope Pius XII to scholars and changed the official name to remove the word “Secret” from its title. ...

Houston megachurch holds healing and thanksgiving service a week after deadly shooting

Feb. 18, 2024 17:27 PM EST

HOUSTON (AP) — Celebrity pastor Joel Osteen's Houston megachurch held a special service Sunday dedicated to healing and thanksgiving a week after a woman opened fire in one of its hallways before being gunned down by security officers. Osteen's Lakewood Church has not had services...

What does it mean to claim the US is a Christian nation, and what does the Constitution say?

Feb. 17, 2024 08:11 AM EST

Many Americans believe the United States was founded as a Christian nation, and the idea is energizing some conservative and Republican activists. But the concept means different things to different people, and historians say that while the issue is complex, the founding documents prioritize...