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The Slingshot: After Monson; Starry eyes; FEMA blessings

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People walk past Salt Lake temple as they arrive to attend the biannual general conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City on April 5, 2014. Photo by Jim Urquhart/Reuters

Need to know: Thursday, January 4, 2018

Mormons after Monson: What comes next?

History shows that each new LDS president can shift the global faith’s relationship with the wider world. (Commentary)

How astrology took over the internet

"Maybe young people are turning away from religion, and woo woo spirituality is filling the gap," writes Amanda Hess. (Subscription may be required.)

Hurricane-damaged houses of worship can receive FEMA aid

FEMA was sued by three Texas churches damaged by Harvey, and by two Florida synagogues damaged by Hurricane Irma.

Ten Commandments monument attracts Texas shoppers, not protesters

A mall seems like a public square but it’s a private space, free from church-state laws requiring religious neutrality.

Fighting gentrification with the Holy Spirit

A small Minneapolis church faces encroaching hipster hangouts and higher taxes with a biblical vision for an equitable community.

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2009 vs. now: How Iran’s new protests compare to the past

CAIRO (AP) — The protests may be rooted in anger over the economy and corruption, but protesters quickly started chanting slogans directly against Khamenei and denouncing the Islamic Republic itself — not just a call for reforms, but an open and outright rejection of the ruling system.

Hindus in India immerse in their holy rivers for the Magh Mela festival

(AP) — The monthlong festival takes place at the confluence of the Ganges, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati rivers. (Slideshow)

As you travel, pause and take a look at airport chapels

(The Conversation) — Airport chapels reflect broader changing norms around American religion.

More views from RNS

The GOP’s theology of debt

Jeff Sessions makes it happen.

Conservative Catholic dissidents attack Popes Francis and Benedict

Conservative Catholic dissidents, who have been attacking Francis, showed their true colors recently by attacking Benedict for his subversive writings and modernist tendencies.

Looking back with lament, and forward with hope

(RNS) — At present many of the most hopeful occurrences of 2017 are likely hidden from our view.