Russian Orthodox Church appoints Putin’s spiritual adviser metropolitan of Crimea 

By David I. Klein — October 16, 2023
(RNS) — In March, Metropolitan Tikhon was seen at Putin's side as the president made his first visit to Crimea since full-scale war broke out between Russia and Ukraine in February 2022. 

Israel orders the evacuation of 1.1 million people from northern part of Gaza, the UN says

By Joseph Krauss and Wafaa Shurafa — October 12, 2023
JERUSALEM (AP) — International aid groups warned of a worsening humanitarian crisis after Israel halted deliveries of food, water, fuel and electricity to Gaza.

Fate of historic Sofia church unclear as Bulgaria accuses abbot of spying for Russia

By David I. Klein — October 4, 2023
(RNS) — After three Russian Orthodox Church priests were expelled from Bulgaria on charges of espionage last month, their former church is at the center of a diplomatic rift between the Russian and Bulgarian governments and an ecclesiastical one between the two countries’ Orthodox churches.

Photo essay: Ethiopian Orthodox in Ohio celebrate Meskel, connections to homeland

By Lauren Pond — October 2, 2023
(RNS) — A holiday observed by both Ethiopian and Eritrean Orthodox churches, Meskel commemorates the fourth-century discovery by Queen Helena of the True Cross upon which Jesus Christ was believed to have been crucified.

Greek court: Orthodox students cannot be exempted from religion classes

By David I. Klein — September 26, 2023
ISTANBUL (RNS) — Even exemptions in which non-Orthodox Christian students state their beliefs, the Greek Council of State ruled, did not violate human rights or European Union privacy laws. 

Riding a wave of converts, one group aims to fuse Orthodoxy with Southern values

By Meagan Saliashvili — September 19, 2023
TOBACCOVILLE, N.C. (RNS) — At the group’s inaugural event, the majority of attendees appeared to represent the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, though few were ‘cradle’ Orthodox Christians.

The Eastern Orthodox bishop who loves animated movies

By Clément Girardot — September 13, 2023
(RNS) — Bishop Isaiah is the unlikely founder of a successful animation film festival that takes place every September in a rural community.

Attacks against Palestinian Christians deepens determination to stay on the land

By Daoud Kuttab — August 21, 2023
(RNS) — Palestinian Christians are doing their utmost to encourage their cohort to stay put on their lands.

Ukrainian Orthodox churches purge vestiges of Russian influence

By Meagan Saliashvili — August 18, 2023
LVIV, Ukraine (RNS) — For centuries, Orthodox Ukrainians saw the traditional Julian calendar as one of the anchors of their church’s identity. Now many are switching to the Gregorian calendar.

Russian patriarch reminds Africans of advantages in following Kremlin’s lead

By Tom Heneghan — August 2, 2023
(RNS) — Kirill's appearance underlined the importance of the soft-power influence that the Russian Orthodox Church exerts for Moscow in Africa.

Ukraine moves official Christmas Day holiday to Dec. 25, denouncing Russian-imposed traditions

By Felipe Dana and Dasha Litvinova — July 31, 2023
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — The explanatory note attached to the law said its goal is to “abandon the Russian heritage,” including that of “imposing the celebration of Christmas” on Jan. 7

77 faith groups get total of $92 million for innovative faith programs for children

By Adelle M. Banks — July 18, 2023
(RNS) — ‘Whether it's fragmentation, technological advances or spirituality, we need to refresh the traditional approaches to our faith,’ said one grant recipient.

Russian lawmakers move to further restrict transgender rights in new legislation

By Dasha Litvinova — July 14, 2023
TALLINN, Estonia (AP) — There is little doubt that the bill, a crippling blow to Russia's oppressed LGBTQ+ community, will be adopted amid the Kremlin's crusade to protect what it views as the country's “traditional values.”

28 years after genocide, Bosniak Muslims mourn their dead but celebrate a return of Islamic life to Srebrenica

By David I. Klein — July 13, 2023
SREBRENICA, Bosnia-Herzegovina (RNS) — Though the area was depopulated of Muslims by the genocide, many survivors and their children have come back. 

Why do we remember Srebrenica?

By Omar Suleiman — July 11, 2023
(RNS) — We must recall the daily, routine dehumanization that leads to genocide.
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