Paul O'Donnell

Paul O'Donnell is the editor in chief of Religion News Service.

All Stories by Paul O'Donnell

Somber, deeply Anglican funeral honors Prince Philip for his service and devotion

By Paul O'Donnell — April 17, 2021
(RNS) — Hewing closely to the traditional Anglican funeral liturgy, the service's hymns and readings reflected Philip's service in the Royal Navy and his environmental work, with only a nod to his Greek Orthodox beginnings.

Anglican convert and Pacific Island deity: 5 faith facts about Prince Philip

By Paul O'Donnell — April 9, 2021
(RNS) — Married for 73 years to the head of the Church of England, the prince consort built a religious profile that was more complicated than his official role might suggest.

Adapting a faith-led effort to fight opioids to encourage vaccinations

By Paul O'Donnell — April 8, 2021
(RNS) — Using a model to educate clergy about substance use disorders is being adapted to defeat uncertainty about the vaccine.

Brian Houston apologizes for Hillsong NYC’s ‘failings,’ promises whistleblower policy

By Paul O'Donnell — March 4, 2021
(RNS) — ‘On behalf of the Global Board and as Global Senior Pastor, I accept responsibility for these failings and apologize unreservedly,’ Houston wrote in an email addressed to ‘Dear Church.’

Rihanna’s Instagram pose with Ganesh earns criticism from Hindus

By Paul O'Donnell — February 19, 2021
(RNS) — Rihanna's topless Instagram portrait featuring a pendant depicting a Hindu deity drew calls of blasphemy — and payback for her recent comments on India's farm crisis.

Florida church says offering free beach parking is a religious act. Judge agrees.

By Paul O'Donnell — January 29, 2021
(RNS) — A federal judge ruled this week that the city could not stop a local church from allowing beachgoers to use its parking lot, calling the practice a legitimate ministry.

How the Dalai Lama’s reincarnation got included in Congress’ $900 billion relief bill

By Paul O'Donnell — December 24, 2020
(RNS) — The bill’s concern with reincarnation is aimed at reining in China’s meddling in Tibet’s religious affairs.

Ranin Karim, woman in Carl Lentz’s alleged affair, seeks ‘closure’ in GMA interview

By Paul O'Donnell — November 20, 2020
(RNS) — 'When you give somebody so much power, they become God to people,' Ranin Karim told GMA. 'People look at Carl like he's God.'

Raphael Warnock, heir to MLK’s pulpit, heads for runoff for Georgia Senate seat

By Paul O'Donnell and Adelle M. Banks — November 3, 2020
(RNS) — The pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, once co-pastored by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., now faces incumbent Sen. Kelly Loeffler.

In Disney’s ‘Clouds,’ Justin Baldoni makes a teen cancer movie about joy

By Paul O'Donnell — October 23, 2020
(RNS) — Justin Baldoni, best known for his role on the CW's 'Jane the Virgin', has modeled his career of late around Western culture's allergy to talking about death.

RNS Updated Budget—Tuesday, October 13, 2020

By Paul O'Donnell — October 13, 2020
NEWS STORY RNS-REFUGEE-CHANGES: Refugee processing system disappears data on religion as fewer persecuted Christians admitted to U.S. (RNS) — The State Department no longer is making publicly available a number of statistics about refugees admitted into the United States, including their religious affiliations. By Emily McFarlan Miller and Jack Jenkins. 650 words. (categories: a, i) […]

RNS Opening Budget—Friday, October 9, 2020

By Paul O'Donnell — October 9, 2020
NEWS STORY RNS-Church-Ladies: Sex, women and the Black church: Novelist reveals true-to-life secrets (RNS) — Hours after learning her book, “The Secret Lives of Church Ladies,” is a National Book Awards finalist, author Deesha Philyaw spoke to Religion News Service about growing up in the church, writing about affairs and what she thinks her late […]

The top three faith moments in the Harris-Pence vice presidential debate

By Paul O'Donnell and Jack Jenkins — October 8, 2020
(RNS) — The two vice presidential candidates rehearsed lines about issues of faith Americans may be hearing for the remainder of the campaign season. 

RNS Morning Report: COVID Hajj Restrictions; Promise Keepers; ‘God is Grey’ Cease and Desist

By Paul O'Donnell — August 3, 2020
Muslim pilgrims walk towards the rocky hill known as Mount Arafat, background, as they practice social distancing to protect against coronavirus during the annual hajj pilgrimage near the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Thursday, July 30, 2020. This year’s hajj was dramatically scaled down from 2.5 million pilgrims to as few as 1,000 due […]

RNS Updated Budget—Tuesday, June 9, 2020

By Paul O'Donnell — June 9, 2020
NEWS STORY RNS-Gugino-Catholic: Martin Gugino is a Catholic peace activist, not an ‘Antifa provocateur,’ friends say (RNS) — Friends of the retired computer scientist described Martin Gugino as a devout Catholic and a graduate of Canisius High School, a private Jesuit school in Buffalo, who is a passionate advocate for multiple causes on behalf of the […]
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