Beliefs Religion News Roundup

Police chaplain * Stained-glass cracks * Jesus’ birthplace: Tuesday’s Roundup

Jen Hatmaker with her adopted daughter Remy. Photo courtesy of Jen Hatmaker

“Tomorrow is Christmas Eve” is one of Twitter’s top trending topics this morning. As we inch closer to Christmas, here are 10-ish items for your water-cooler conversations:

A New York City police officer who was killed over the weekend was one hour away from graduating from a volunteer chaplain program when he died.

“You are not alone,” Pope Francis wrote in a long letter of solidarity to suffering Christians in Middle East. Plus, our own Kevin Eckstrom spoke with Gwen Ifill on PBS about the pope’s blistering attack on Vatican bureaucracy.

Jen Hatmaker with her adopted daughter Remy. Photo courtesy of Jen Hatmaker

Jen Hatmaker with her adopted daughter Remy. Photo courtesy of Jen Hatmaker

As evangelicals have turned their attention toward adoption in the past decade, families like Jen Hatmaker’s are grappling with race relations in a profoundly personal way, especially as national news spotlights racial tension in New York; Ferguson, and elsewhere.

The stained-glass industry is showing serious cracks as attendance declines at churches and some congregations move toward a modern aesthetic.

A judge has ruled Oklahoma’s botched execution was not experimental or inhumane punishment. Lethal injections will resume.

Jesus’ birthplace is facing modern-day traffic problems.

Speaking of Jesus, for nearly every day the last eight months, Michael Grant, 28, has dressed as Jesus Christ and gone by the nickname “Philly Jesus,” walking the streets of Philadelphia to share the gospel. Here’s a slideshow.

Muslim clerics in Pakistan fear the government will crack down on the seminary system.

David Barton, a popular evangelical historian whose interpretation of history is often contested, has settled a defamation suit.

Finally, a favorite story of the day: nuns who sell grass-fed beef. “We have kind of a corner on the market — you know, nuns selling natural beef,” one of the nuns say.

About the author

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.

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