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Emily McFarlan Miller

Emily McFarlan Miller is a national reporter for RNS based in Chicago. She covers evangelical and mainline Protestant Christianity.

All Stories by Emily McFarlan Miller

New podcast ‘Hark!’ explores the stories behind the most beloved Christmas carols

By Emily McFarlan Miller — December 8, 2021
(RNS) — Christmas carols are packed with theology and history that even the most regular churchgoers may not know, according to podcast host Maggi Van Dorn.

Pastor who appeared in drag on HBO’s ‘We’re Here’ forced to leave his church

By Emily McFarlan Miller — December 6, 2021
(RNS) — Pastor Craig Duke was relieved from his pastoral duties last week at Newburgh United Methodist Church near Evansville, Indiana, after receiving pushback from congregants over his appearance on the show.

Plumber reportedly finds cash and checks in walls of Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church

By Emily McFarlan Miller — December 3, 2021
(RNS) — Did a plumber just discover a new clue in a seven-year-old burglary case at the Houston-area megachurch?

‘The Giving Manger’ launches new Christmas tradition — and 5 million acts of kindness

By Emily McFarlan Miller — December 3, 2021
(RNS) — This Christmas, sisters Allison Hottinger and Lisa Kalberer are celebrating 5 million acts of kindness inspired by what they call 'The Giving Manger.'

Why ‘sorcery’ was the fastest-growing search term on Bible Gateway in 2021

By Emily McFarlan Miller — December 2, 2021
(RNS) — The Greek word ‘pharmakeia’ has appeared in debates over COVID-19 prevention measures, particularly opposition by some charismatic and evangelical Christians to vaccines against the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

Native America has lessons for surviving an apocalypse, says Choctaw elder and Episcopal priest

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 24, 2021
(RNS) — The Rev. Steven Charleston talked to Religion News Service about his new book, 'Ladder to the Light,' and what Native America has to teach others about climbing out of darkness.

United Methodist meeting to consider split is still on … for now

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 22, 2021
(RNS) — But the denomination is considering the health and safety of delegates, staff, volunteers and guests, as well as the inclusion of the broad diversity of the church, before signing off on the next meeting.

New children’s Bibles rethink how Christians share old, old story with young readers

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 22, 2021
(RNS) — Parents are calling attention to whitewashed illustrations, almost exclusively male characters and an emphasis on memorizing morals over engaging with the divine in many existing children's story Bibles.

Haaland announces effort to protect, improve access to Indigenous sacred sites

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 16, 2021
(RNS) — Controversies over the use of sacred sites have made headlines in recent years, beginning with action to halt the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in 2016.

Meet the United Methodist pastor featured on HBO’s drag reality show ‘We’re Here’

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 9, 2021
(RNS) — Performing in drag was an ‘incredibly wonderful, refreshing, deepening, powerful spiritual experience,’ said Pastor Craig Duke of Newburgh United Methodist Church in Indiana.

RNS holiday gift guide 2021: Treat yourself to cozy socks or a self-care box

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 8, 2021
(RNS) — Our holiday gift guide is full of ideas for all the people of faith — or no faith — on your list.

COP26 event urges partnership between religious, Indigenous leaders to save planet

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 4, 2021
(RNS) — There can be no solution to the climate crisis that does not recognize the rights and spiritualities of Indigenous peoples, according to religious leaders who gathered for the official COP26 side event ‘Making Peace with Nature.’

Jeff Chu on the daunting charge to finish Rachel Held Evans’ final book

By Emily McFarlan Miller — November 2, 2021
(RNS) — ‘The crucial thing to remember is that with God, death is never the end of the story,’ Rachel Held Evans wrote in her final book for adults.

Witches remember those lost to COVID-19 among the dead at Samhain

By Emily McFarlan Miller — October 28, 2021
(RNS) — A solemn occasion with Celtic roots, Samhain takes place at a time when many religions and cultures believe the veil between the living and the dead is thinnest.

How some ‘Jewitches’ are embracing both Judaism and witchcraft

By Heather Greene and Emily McFarlan Miller — October 25, 2021
(RNS) — Rabbis and witches alike are bringing together magic — often called witchcraft — and Jewish ritual.
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