TASS on Russia’s talking dogs

Politicians were like talking dogs in a circus: the fact that they existed was uncommonly interesting, but no sane person would actually believe what they said. Alan Furst, Dark Star (2002) I am sympathetic to the sentiments expressed by Pravda journalist André Szara, the central character in Alan Furst’s political-historical novel Dark Star. (I consider it [Read More...]

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NYTimes notices old doctrine wars over InterVarsity chapters

The debate started out behind closed doors but quickly jumped into the mainstream press. The news hook was that a lesbian student at Tufts University claimed that, under the campus nondiscrimination policy, she had been unfairly denied access to a leadership role in the Tufts Christian Fellowship, which was affiliated with InterVarsity. The campus chapter [Read More...]

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What? You thought Francis, Peres and Abbas really prayed?

Let’s state this in journalistic terms. What? You thought that the mainstream journalists covering the remarkable Vatican rite offering prayers for Middle East peace rite would actually produce coverage that included any content from the prayers? Friends and neighbors, this event was all about politics and statecraft. Clearly, if the men wanted to produce real [Read More...]

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Which religions favor separation of church and state?

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/religionqanda/2014/06/which-religions-favor-separation-of-church-and-state/ LISA ASKS: Do all religions teach separation between church and state? If not, which ones and why? THE RELIGION GUY ANSWERS: Separation of church and state (the usual phrasing though “of religion and state” is often more accurate) is an achievement of modern politics and by no means a universal one. Among world religions, [Read More...]

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United (for now) Methodists and the same-sex debate

Amid talk of a possible schism over homosexuality, the United Methodist Church is back in the news. On the heels of an exceedingly positive profile of Methodist gay-rights advocate Frank Schaefer, the Washington Post reported this weekend: Hundreds of American pastors from the United Methodist Church have signed a proposal released Friday that aims to keep the global [Read More...]

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BBC veteran: You know, the press just doesn’t get religion

Well, here is a gift to a GetReligionista who is on vacation. I mean, what kind of headline would YOU write on a Press Gazette (over in U.K.) report that opens with the following: BBC journalist Edward Stourton has said Britain’s lack of appreciation for the importance of religion across the world damages its news [Read More...]

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As usual, good Francis and bad Benedict at the BBC

The honeymoon continues for Pope Francis and the press. Coverage of the pope’s trip to Israel and the Palestinian territories was rather good. Save for a brief flutter over what language Jesus spoke, the press coverage was sympathetic, balanced and thoughtful, and in marked contrast to the treatment afforded Benedict when he traveled to Germany [Read More...]

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Hey BBC: What do the generals in northern Nigeria believe?

The horror stories continue in Nigeria, day after day, covered by professionals in newsrooms around the world (CNN latest here). If you are interested in religion news right now, you have to be paying attention to Nigeria and Sudan, in particular. Here’s a new report from The Guardian, with details on Boko Haram attacks that [Read More...]

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