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Book: The world is losing its religion. Revival is unlikely.

By Yonat Shimron — June 6, 2023
(RNS) — In ‘Beyond Doubt: The Secularization of Society,’ three sociologists lay out a theory that can be summed up in a simple phrase: Modernization creates problems for religion.
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Can Pope Francis bring peace to Ukraine?

By Thomas Reese — May 31, 2023
(RNS) — The pope’s refusal to cheer either side in this war gives him credibility as mediator.

Vatican questions how priest moved $17 million meant for missionary work into investment fund

By Nicole Winfield — May 31, 2023
VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has asked aides to get to the bottom of how at least $17 million was transferred from the Vatican’s U.S.-based missionary fundraising coffers into an impact investing vehicle run by a priest.

What is Theravada Buddhism? A scholar of Asian religions explains

By Brooke Schedneck — May 31, 2023
(The Conversation) — Theravada Buddhism is the dominant religious system in several parts of South and Southeast Asia, but there is a rich diversity of beliefs and practices in this tradition.

Another deceased Jesuit priest accused of sex abuse in Bolivia as pedophilia scandal grows

By Associated Press — May 30, 2023
LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Jorge Vila Despujol, who died in Barcelona in 2012, was formally accused before prosecutors Thursday by a person who alleges they were indecently touched when they were 13, the Jesuit Society in Bolivia said in a statement.

In Morocco, conference brings together rabbis from three continents

By David I. Klein — May 22, 2023
(RNS) — Dozens of rabbis affiliated with the Chabad-Lubavitch Hasidic movement gathered in Casablanca, Morocco, last week for a conference aimed at Chabad leaders serving small Jewish communities across Africa, the Middle East and Europe. 

A newly identified document gives insight into the mind of Maimonides

By David I. Klein — May 19, 2023
(RNS) — The 900-year-old scrap of paper was among the hundreds of thousands of fragments collected from the Cairo Genizah, a trove of Jewish writings held in a Cairo synagogue that collectively chronicles nearly two millennia of Jewish life in Egypt.

New head of Vatican charity Caritas looks to future after papal firings

By Nicole Winfield — May 17, 2023
VATICAN CITY (AP) — 'I know the past is there, but we really haven’t dwelt on it', Dutton said, referring to the sudden dismissal of his predecessor by the pope. 'We’ve been trying to look now to the future.'

For 25th year, State Department reports on threats, triumphs in religious freedom

By Adelle M. Banks — May 16, 2023
(RNS) — The report, which assesses conditions in 199 countries, also looks at policies and laws, including those about blasphemy and apostasy, that ‘criminalize religious expression.’

German court convicts, fines Jesuit priest over climate protest

By Associated Press — May 16, 2023
BERLIN (AP) — The district court in Munich handed down its verdict in the case of the Rev. Joerg Alt after he participated in a road blockade in the Bavarian capital on Oct. 28.

Nurse-midwife Edna Adan Ismail, opponent of female genital mutilation, wins Templeton Prize

By Kathryn Post — May 16, 2023
(RNS) — She is the first African woman to receive the prize, which is valued at 1.1 million British pounds (over $1.3 million).

Meditative mothering? How Buddhism honors both compassionate caregiving and celibate monks and nuns

By Liz Wilson — May 12, 2023
(The Conversation) — The lines between family life and Buddhist monasticism are not so ‘either/or’ as they might seem.

Faith-based refugee resettlement agencies denounce new asylum rule

By Yonat Shimron and Alejandra Molina — May 11, 2023
(RNS) — The new rule, which goes into effect May 16, rejects asylum claims for most people who cross the border but do not first seek asylum in Mexico.
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