Charities struggle with cleanup from Hurricane Isaac

NEW ORLEANS (RNS) Faith-based ministries say it's already clear that the recovery from Hurricane Isaac will proceed without the national outpouring of money and volunteers triggered by Hurricane Katrina. “From our point of view, the biggest challenge with this disaster will be getting attention and money,” said Gordon Wadge, president of Catholic Charities. By Bruce Nolan.

Can hip-hop be holy? A Q&A with Monica Miller

(RNS) Hip-hop's all the rage in universities and seminaries, and dozens of pop culture books have been written about using hip-hop to evangelize young people. But professor Monica R. Miller warns in her new book that looking for religion in hip-hop is a risky proposition. By Nancy Haught.

COMMENTARY: Back to the future

(RNS) Research for my upcoming biography of Rabbi Stephen Wise led me to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library in Hyde Park, N.Y. Reading formerly “Secret” or “Confidential” documents was a sobering experience because unlike the leaders of the time, I knew, for better or worse, how it all turned out in the end. By A. James Rudin.


RNS photo by J.B. Forbes/St. Louis Post-Dispatch

In Missouri, Mormons see Adam’s fall after Garden of Eden and Jesus’ return

DAVIESS COUNTY, Mo. (RNS) To non-Mormons, it sounds odd that a bluff on a bend 124 feet above the Grand River represents to 15 million faithful both the beginning and end of human time. Mormon doctrine makes reference to the place as the site where Adam and Eve went after God banished them from the Garden of Eden. It's also regarded as a gathering place for the faithful at the second coming of Jesus Christ. By Tim Townsend.

COMMENTARY: All politics (should be) local

NEW YORK (RNS) The better a restaurant owner knows the customers, the more focused the menu can be. It's the same with politics; when it's local, candidates tend to know their people or at least know their interests, lingo, worries and hopes. This is the level at which democracy tends to work best. By Tom Ehrich.