Arts & Culture

Flamy Grant: A drag queen’s journey from church kid to chart-topping Christian artist

By Kathryn Post — August 16, 2023
(RNS) — For Matthew Lovegood, aka ‘Flamy Grant,’ releasing music in the Christian genre is about visibility for queer kids growing up in the church.

Threat from climate change to some of India’s sacred pilgrimage sites is reshaping religious beliefs

By David L. Haberman — August 15, 2023
(The Conversation) — At the pilgrimage site of Kedarnath in northern India, disastrous flooding has led many to ask whether the gods are getting angry about human behavior.

Ghana’s plans for a national cathedral are mired in controversy and delays − but also reflect religion’s strong role in the nation’s identity

By Nicolette Manglos-Weber — August 15, 2023
(The Conversation) — With modern borders drawn up by colonial powers, some African governments have turned to religion to try to forge national unity since independence.

Joseph F. Smith: A traumatized and beloved Mormon leader

By Jana Riess — August 14, 2023
(RNS) — Loving, devoted Mormon prophet or rage-prone abuser? Yes to both, says a new biography of Joseph F. Smith.

Indian court allows survey of a 17th-century mosque to see if it was built over a Hindu temple

By Biswajeet Banerjee — August 3, 2023
LUCKNOW, India (AP) —The dispute over land ownership had been one of India’s most heated issues between India’s 80% majority Hindu community and Muslim minority.

Russian shelling hits a landmark church in the Ukrainian city of Kherson

By Hanna Arhirova — August 3, 2023
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — The Kherson church, dating from 1781, is one of the city's most notable buildings.

Sinead O’Connor was once seen as a sacrilegious rebel, but her music and life were deeply infused with spiritual seeking

By Brenna Moore — July 28, 2023
(The Conversation) — A professor of modern Catholicism looks back at the ways the iconic Irish singer steeped herself in religion, even as she criticized its institutions.

Mexico’s native ethnic groups promote their heritage during Oaxaca’s biggest cultural festival

By MarÍa Teresa HernÁndez — July 27, 2023
OAXACA, México (AP) — During the government-sponsored event, 16 Indigenous ethnic groups and the Afro-Mexican community promote their traditions through public dances, parades and craft sales.

From apps to labyrinths, walking gained as a spiritual tool in COVID-19 crisis

By Kathryn Post — July 26, 2023
(RNS) — How the creator of a new walking app, a co-founder of a decades-old walking group and a new generation of labyrinth enthusiasts turned to walking for spiritual renewal.

Myanmar’s generals unveil giant Buddha statue as they seek to win hearts and minds during civil war

By Grant Peck — July 24, 2023
BANGKOK (AP) — The military-controlled government of strife-torn Myanmar on Friday showed off a new giant statue of a sitting Buddha that is scheduled to be consecrated on Aug. 1.

Flooded with sightseers, Europe’s iconic churches struggle to accommodate both worship and tourism

By Giovanna Dell'orto — July 21, 2023
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — With tourism reaching or surpassing pre-pandemic records in Barcelona and across southern Europe, iconic sacred sites are struggling to accommodate the faithful who come to pray and the millions of visitors who often pay to view the art and architecture.

‘The Chosen’ resumes filming after strike threatened to stall Season 4

By Kathryn Post — July 18, 2023
(RNS) — The hit show agreed to be retroactively obligated to the contract terms that will be agreed upon between AMPTP and SAG-AFTRA when the strike ends.

‘Brigadoon’ for Jewish singers, choral festival showcases the wonder of music

By Kathryn Post — July 14, 2023
TARRYTOWN, NEW YORK (RNS) — The North American Jewish Choral Festival brought together roughly 400 singers in Tarrytown, New York, this week.

The Bhagavad Gita, the bomb and the dharma of Robert Oppenheimer

By Syama Allard — July 12, 2023
(RNS) — How did the atomic physicist’s fascination with the Gita influence his feelings about the making of the bomb? 

Oak trusses raised to roof of fire-ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral as crowds watch along the Seine

By Associated Press — July 12, 2023
PARIS (AP) — A crane hoisted massive oak trusses from a barge and onto Notre Dame Cathedral on Tuesday in a spectacular operation to rebuild the fire-ravaged monument and bring it back to life by December 2024. With trusses weighing 7 to 7.5 tons, the delicate operation drew crowds along a bridge over the Seine […]
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