News

Trump at 2017 National Prayer Breakfast

Before National Prayer Breakfast, Muslims and Evangelicals Connect

February 18, 2018

Last week, the 66th annual National Prayer Breakfast rounded off a three-day event promoting interfaith communication and understanding.

Compared to the 2017 prayer breakfast, during which newly-inaugurated President Donald Trump sparked controversy by promising to “destroy” the Johnson Amendment and mocking fellow reality TV personality Arnold Schwarzenegger’s television ratings, some saw Trump’s 2018 speech as being comparatively “subdued.”

The president’s...

Read more about Before National Prayer Breakfast, Muslims and Evangelicals Connect
Burns Strider

Clinton Kept 2008 Faith Adviser Despite Harassment Allegations

January 31, 2018

Hillary Clinton opted to keep on her senior faith adviser despite sexual harassment allegations during her 2008 presidential campaign, the New York Times reported late last week.

Burns Strider, a 52-year-old who has made a name for himself as a liaison between the Democratic Party and influential faith leaders, reportedly harassed a 30-year-old coworker with whom he shared an office. The New...

Read more about Clinton Kept 2008 Faith Adviser Despite Harassment Allegations
Russell M. Nelson

LDS Church Announces New President

January 19, 2018

Two weeks after the death of leader Thomas S. Monson, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a new president.

93-year old Russell M. Nelson will take the helm as the 17th president of the Church, LDS leaders announced via live broadcast Tuesday. Nelson’s “setting apart” was no surprise—the LDS Church operates according to a fairly predictable hierarchy, and as first counselor to President Monson, Nelson was expected to take his place.

In a live broadcast...

Read more about LDS Church Announces New President
Roy Moore

Allegations of Sexual Misconduct Split Voter Base for Republican Roy Moore

November 21, 2017

Earlier this month, Republican nominee in Alabama for the U.S. Senate Roy Moore came under fire for allegations of sexual misconduct with minors as young as age 14 in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

On November 9, The Washington Post reported that, while working as a prosecutor in Alabama’s Etowah County, Moore allegedly propositioned...

Read more about Allegations of Sexual Misconduct Split Voter Base for Republican Roy Moore
Rohingya refugees

As Rohingya Flee Myanmar, Bangladesh Bans Three Muslim Aid Groups

October 20, 2017

In what some are describing as the world’s fastest growing refugee crisis, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya minorities have fled Myanmar since this August. As neighboring Bangladesh continues to accept refugees, however, it has begun to screen aid organizations in the name of security.

The Rohingya people have long faced discrimination in Myanmar, where they are both a religious and ethnic minority. Tensions peaked in late August when a group of Rohingya insurgents...

Read more about As Rohingya Flee Myanmar, Bangladesh Bans Three Muslim Aid Groups
Counter-protester clergy link arms at Unite the Right rally

While Religious Groups Condemn Trump’s Charlottesville Comments, Evangelicals Remain Devoted

August 27, 2017

After a white supremacist rally resulted in the death of a counter-protester, President Donald Trump has been criticized from religious leaders of a variety of political leanings, but has largely retained the support of white evangelicals, who overwhelmingly voted for him in the 2016 election.

The Saturday, August 12 rally in Charlottesville, Virginia saw the coalescence of assorted white nationalist...

Read more about While Religious Groups Condemn Trump’s Charlottesville Comments, Evangelicals Remain Devoted
Empty LDS conference center

LDS General Authority Excommunicated, First in Decades

August 11, 2017

A mid-level Mormon church official was removed from his post and excommunicated from the church Tuesday—the first excommunication of an LDS leader in almost three decades.

59-year-old James J. Hamula had served as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy—a body of leadership just below the church’s First Presidency and the Twelve Apostles—since 2008. This body of top officials, together called General Authorities, are the only leaders that work for the church full-time, leaving behind their former careers. Hamula had previously worked as a lawyer.

The...

Read more about LDS General Authority Excommunicated, First in Decades
Gay vet supporting trans rights

Trump’s Twitter Policymaking Jeopardizes Transgender Troops

July 28, 2017

On Wednesday, President Trump announced in a series of three tweets that the United States military will no longer allow transgender people to serve “in any capacity” on the grounds that transgender troops cause the military to “be burdened with tremendous medical costs and disruption.”

Transgender people have only been allowed to serve openly in the Armed Forces since last year, when the Obama administration...

Read more about Trump’s Twitter Policymaking Jeopardizes Transgender Troops
Same-sex wedding cake topper

Supreme Court to Hear Case on Baker Refusing Same-Sex Couple

July 5, 2017

Last Monday, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the appeal of a Colorado baker who holds that his refusal to make a same-sex wedding cake was not discrimination, but rather an expression of his freedom of speech.

The case centers around a 2012 encounter between baker Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, and couple David Mullins and Charlie Craig. Because same-sex marriage was not yet legal in Colorado, Mullins and Craig were planning to marry in Massachusetts but to celebrate the union in Colorado. When they asked Phillips of Masterpiece...

Read more about Supreme Court to Hear Case on Baker Refusing Same-Sex Couple
Sri Lankan Muslim woman looks at camera in scorched building

Sri Lankan Authorities Arrest Policeman, Monk for Violence Against Muslims

June 22, 2017

After ongoing accusations of inaction, Sri Lankan authorities have arrested four Buddhists for promoting and perpetuating violence against Muslims.

For years, Muslim Sri Lankans—who make up nearly 10 percent of the country’s population—have been targeted in spates of religious violence. In 2014, a series of anti-Muslim riots on Muslim homes, shops, and places of worship displaced more than 10,000 people. More recently, Muslims in Sri Lanka have reported at least 16 incidents of hate crimes against Muslims since April 16.

...

Read more about Sri Lankan Authorities Arrest Policeman, Monk for Violence Against Muslims