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Science & Tech

In ‘The Salvage Crew,’ a Buddhist AI poet seeks aliens and enlightenment

By Bob Smietana — February 17, 2021
(RNS) — Yudhanjaya Wijeratne's new novel was created with the help of an AI poet and a few computer programs — and explores his love of poetry and his Buddhist background.

Celebrating Ash Wednesday in a pandemic? There’s an app for that

By Emily McFarlan Miller — February 16, 2021
(RNS) — Catholic prayer and meditation app Hallow also has taken the day's most visible tradition online with an 'AshTag' filter on both Facebook and Instagram.

‘Uber for imams’ app offers Muslims virtual khutbahs — and community

By Joseph Hammond — February 2, 2021
(RNS) — A virtual hub called ImamConnect aspires to provide everything from Muslim circumcisions to headstone engravings on a platform designed to be an ‘Uber for imams.’

Faith and the COVID-19 vaccine: ‘Using the Black church to get the word out’

By Julie Schonfeld — January 26, 2021
(RNS) — The Rev. Jacques Andre DeGraff of Canaan Baptist Church of Christ in Harlem talks about how Black communities are overcoming distrust of the medical community.

Faith and the COVID-19 vaccine: ‘Muslims were among the first to believe in vaccines’

By Julie Schonfeld — January 21, 2021
(RNS) — A conversation with Imam Mohamed Magid on the safety and theological underpinning of taking the vaccine.

In ‘Can Robots Be Jewish?’ rabbis weigh in on a Jewish pastime: disagreement

By Yonat Shimron — December 16, 2020
(RNS) — The questions in this collection, part of Moment Magazine’s long-running feature ‘Ask the Rabbis,’ offer a model for what is fundamental to Judaism.

With vaccines on the horizon, faith leaders could play a crucial role in promoting their use

By Jack Jenkins — December 10, 2020
(RNS) — Asked about his participation in the Moderna vaccine trial, Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld replied, ‘It’s the most important sermon I’ve ever given — by far.’

Do you see what I see? Planetary alignment to create a ‘Christmas star’

By Emily McFarlan Miller — December 7, 2020
(RNS) — Astronomers have floated the idea that a similar conjunction of planets could be a scientific explanation for the star of Bethlehem in the Christmas story.

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, who brought Judaism to a global audience, dies

By Yonat Shimron — November 8, 2020
(RNS) — The former chief rabbi of the United Kingdom won a large audience for his ability to reconcile the particularities of Judaism with universal concerns.

Faith and politics mix to drive evangelical Christians’ climate change denial

By Adrian Bardon — September 11, 2020
(The Conversation) — Does religion predispose people against climate science? Studies link a belief in miracles and an afterlife with lower estimates of the risks posed by climate change.

John MacArthur claimed there is ‘no pandemic.’ He was politicizing science, experts say

By Yonat Shimron — September 1, 2020
(RNS) — The church appears to be wading into a highly politicized campaign to minimize or outright deny the existence of the coronavirus.

2,500 evangelicals sign pandemic statement warning: Don’t ignore science

By Yonat Shimron — August 19, 2020
(RNS) — The statement, drafted by BioLogos, sends a pointed message: ‘ … when Dr. Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, tells us what scientists have learned about this infectious disease, he should be listened to.’

With new document, Vatican implements practical steps for environmental sustainability

By Claire Giangravé — June 18, 2020
(RNS) — From promoting environmental studies in schools and universities to eliminating pesticide use at the Vatican, the new document offers an ambitious plan to encourage sustainability around the world.

Canadian Catholic bishop funds research for a safe and efficient coronavirus vaccine

By Claire Giangravé — May 11, 2020
(RNS) — ‘May the search for COVID-19 solutions also be a moment of solidarity, of collaboration, and of growing together,’ said Archbishop J. Michael Miller of the archdiocese of Vancouver, Canada.

Yale’s popular happiness class gains an online following among the socially distanced

By Yonat Shimron — April 27, 2020
(RNS) — More than 2.2 million people have enrolled in the 10-week online class called ‘The Science of Well-Being,’ which explores the things people think will make them happy — and the things that actually bring lasting life satisfaction.
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