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RNS Budget Update — Monday, August 30, 2021

Services at an influential Nashville-area megachurch were disrupted Sunday (Aug. 29) after the wife of the church’s founding pastor stood up and accused his successor of conspiring against him. Berger accused leaders of labeling her husband as a “Christian extremist” […]

NEWS STORY
RNS-Grace-Disruption: Services at Tennessee governor’s church disrupted by megachurch pastor feud
(RNS) — Services at an influential Nashville-area megachurch were disrupted Sunday (Aug. 29) after the wife of the church’s founding pastor stood up and accused his successor of conspiring against him. Berger accused leaders of labeling her husband as a “Christian extremist” and said the couple would be leaving the church, where Steve Berger had assumed an advisory role as “founding pastor” after naming his successor. By Bob Smietana. 758 words. (category: a)

NEWS STORY
RNS-Gods-Diplomats: New book ‘God’s Diplomats’ unveils the secret history of Vatican diplomacy
(RNS) – In a new book, ‘God’s Diplomats: Pope Francis, Vatican Diplomacy and America’s Armageddon,’ journalist and foreign relations expert Victor Gaetan unveils the inner workings of the Holy See’s diplomatic efforts, which increasingly have clashed with the United States’ foreign policy. By Claire Giangravè. 1300 words. (category i)

NEWS STORY
RNS-March-Washington: MLK’s family, Rev. Al Sharpton address voting fights, filibuster at Washington marchWASHINGTON (RNS) — The granddaughter and son of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. stood on the National Mall where their forebear keynoted the March on Washington 58 years ago and advocated for improved voting rights across the nation. By Adelle M. Banks. 1,100 words. (category: a)

NEWS STORY
RNS-Darling-Fired: NRB spokesman Dan Darling fired after pro-COVID vaccine statements on Morning Joe(RNS)  — Daniel Darling, spokesman for the National Religious Broadcasters, a prominent evangelical group representing Christian television and radio stations, was fire after making pro-vaccine statements on a cable news show and in USA Today. Darling, an evangelical pastor and author, encouraged his fellow evangelicals to get a COVID-19 vaccine. By Bob Smietana 1,275 words. (categories: a)

COMMENTARY
RNS-Burge-Oped: ‘OK millennial’: Don’t blame the boomers for decline of religion in America
(RNS) — Examining the data from the General Social Survey, it turns out it’s not the baby boomers who were the last vestige of a highly religious, very Christian era of American history. Instead, Generation X — born between 1965 and the early ’80s — is the last to come of age and even perpetuate an overwhelmingly Christian and largely devout religious landscape in terms of church attendance and beliefs about God. By Ryan Burge. 802 words. (category: k)

COMMENTARY
RNS-Salkin-Oped: No parole for Sirhan!
(RNS) — Why is it important that there be no parole for the assassin of Robert Kennedy? Sirhan Bishara Sirhan was a Christian Palestinian resident of Silwan, in East Jerusalem. He chose to kill Kennedy on June 5, 1968, because it coincided with the first anniversary of Israel’s stunning victory during the Six-Day War. Sirhan hated Kennedy because he had supported Israel; in fact, that was exactly what Sirhan said when he testified at his own trial. By Jeffrey Salkin. 669 words. (category: k)

COMMENTARY
RNS-Chastain-Oped:Evangelicals: You’re still not really listening to what exvangelicals are saying
(RNS) — Evangelical critiqueS seek to undermine exvangelical credibility through vague dismissals asserting a lack of scriptural literacy, a desire to “jump on trends” and even claims of apostasy. What the exvangelical narratives often reveal, however, is not a lack of biblical literacy among those who leave — it is a lack of agreement with evangelicals around what the Bible means and teaches. By Blake Chastain. 1,534 words. (category: k)

COMMENTARY
RNS-Davie-Abram: How the Black church can help end the HIV/AIDS crisis
(RNS) — It is not lost on us that Black churches have often contributed to the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS. Many of us can vividly recall how some Black churches ignored the pain and suffering of those dying during the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the 1980s. Many Black Muslim leaders followed this same unfortunate path. Far too many children of the Black church died in isolation and without their faith community because of the stigma associated with the virus. We can choose to act differently. By Frederick A. Davie and Don Abram. 648 words. (category: k)