Monthly Archives: June 2009

Sightings: A Week in ‘Secular’ America

In his latest Sightings column, religion scholar Martin Marty looks back at an eventful week and how the news coincided with religion and ethics.

Posted in Academia, Elsewhere, Pop Culture | Leave a comment

Scientology defectors talk about church

The St. Petersburg Times has published a three-part investigative series focusing on Scientology leader David Miscavige. Former executives of the church, including two of the former top lieutenants to Miscavige, allege a culture of intimidation and violence under Miscavige. Read … Continue reading

Posted in Elsewhere | Leave a comment

Obamas pick a church home

TIME’s Amy Sullivan broke the news this morning of the Obamas’ choice of church: Evergreen Chapel, the nondenominational church at Camp David. A number of factors drove the decision — financial, political, personal — but chief among them was the … Continue reading

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Why Michael Jackson loved the Sabbath

UPDATE: Michael Jackson’s public memorial is planned for Tuesday. I’m keeping my ears open for details about Michael Jackson’s funeral. I’ll post an update when the news breaks. Some have wondered whether MJ arranged for a Muslim burial. He reportedly … Continue reading

Posted in Islam, Pop Culture | 1 Comment

‘Praise God and pass the diapers’

This article in the latest issue of Religion in the News looks at America’s fascination with super-sized Christian families and how TV producers tend to avoid the religious underpinnings that inspire these reality TV parents to reproduce in big numbers: … Continue reading

Posted in Evangelicals, Pop Culture | Leave a comment

PBS limits religious programming

PBS officials decided last week to not allow new religious programming at member stations over concerns that the programming could violate the organization’s nonsectarian status. According to RNS, select PBS stations may continue broadcasting their current faith-based shows. The ruling … Continue reading

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Sightings: Fatherhood

What role does religion play in fatherhood? You might think the answer is none if you read the July issue of the Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences. That’s the subject of religion scholar Martin Marty’s … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 1 Comment

The wrong high road for free speech?

After a neo-Nazi group adopted a section of highway in Springfield, Mo., to pick up trash, state lawmakers plan to rename that section of road after a Jewish theologian who marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But the daughter … Continue reading

Posted in Judaism, Politics | Leave a comment

This is your brain on God

NPR religion reporter Barbara Bradley Hagerty has concluded a fascinating five-part series on science and God. I’m still listening to it on podcast, but I encourage you to listen. Bradley Hagerty, who spent a year exploring the science of spirituality … Continue reading

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Sightings: A Different Side of Chabad

In his latest Sightings column, religion scholar Martin Marty discusses recent controversial comments made by a popular Chabad rabbi on the treatment of Arabs.

Posted in Academia, Judaism | Leave a comment