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Volume 13, No. 1 of Religion
in the News
is now online, and before describing its contents, I
need to announce that as of this volume we are cutting back from three
to two issues annually. Partly this is the consequence of shrunken
resources, but it’s also the case that given the amount of real-time
blogging on the religion news of the day (including in this space), the
need for timeliness has decreased. So now RIN will feature more articles
per issue and take a somewhat longer view.

This issue begins
with a package of stories on religion and the Haitian earthquake: Leslie
Desmangles on
how the disaster has thrust Vodou
into a public role for the first
time in Haitian history; Shannon Smith on
the sad saga
of the orphan-seeking Southern Baptists from Idaho;
and Elizabeth McAlister on
the kinds of succor
provided by music.

For political junkies
there’s Juhem Navarro-Rivera’s piece
on what the Trinity ARIS tells us about Latino political affiliation:
The news is even worse for
Republicans than you thought. The Uganda Anti-Homosexual Bill is, as I
write, still in limbo, but Mark Fackler explains
the East African context while Jesse Masai interviews
top officials of the Anglican Church of Uganda.

Don’t miss
Andrew Walsh’s extended
sorting out
of the latest phase of the Catholic sexual abuse
crisis. Whatever your perspective, I guarantee the piece will help you
make sense of what’s happened since the chickens came home to the
Vatican roost.

Christine McCarthy McMorris’ account
of the deaths by sweatlodge presided over by New Age prosperity gospel
guru James Arthur Ray provides a bifocal view of the mainstream and
Native American media versions of that tragic story. The state of play
of Obama’s version of the Bush Faith-Based initiative is
by Brendan Kelly. And oh yes, my editor’s
returns to the question of the existential condition of the
religious right via David Edwin Harrell Jr.’s important
biography of Pat Robertson. Knock yourselves out.