Aerial view of National Mall in Washington, D.C. Photo by Carol M. Highsmith/Library of Congress

Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and organizations promoting atheism, agnosticism, and humanism announced the creation this week of the first Congressional Freethought Caucus.

Image via United Nations Photo / Flickr

A crowd of thousands of angry, shouting protesters gathered as his body, covered by a sheet, was carried on a makeshift stretcher along dirt streets to the presidential palace, a Reuters witness said.

Participants take part in a march in Phoenix, Ariz., April 26, 2018 in this picture obtained from social media. Christy Chavis/File Photo via REUTERS

It has been called the "Teachers' Spring" in the United States, with educators from five states staging an unprecedented wave of protests demanding increases in pay and school budgets.

A sign reading "Central American migrants, free transit, stop deportations" is seen as members of a caravan of migrants from Central America and activists sit on the border fence between Mexico and the U.S., as a part of a demonstration prior to preparations for an asylum request in the U.S., in Tijuana, Mexico April 29, 2018. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

"I'm nervous. I'm afraid," said Linda Sonigo, 40, walking solemnly toward the U.S. gate with her two-year-old granddaughter in her arms. "I'm afraid they'll separate us," she said, motioning to her two children and grandchild.

The Rev. James Cone. Image courtesy of Union Theological Seminary

James H. Cone, the scholar known as the “founder of black liberation theology,” died April 28, Union Theological Seminary announced. He was 79.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un shake hands at the truce village of Panmunjom inside the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas, South Korea, April 27, 2018. Korea Summit Press Pool/Pool via Reuters

Moon greeted Kim at the military demarcation line where the men smiled and shook hands. In an unplanned move, Kim invited Moon to step briefly across into North Korea, before the two leaders crossed back into South Korea holding hands.

Bill Cosby reacts while being notified a verdict is in at the Montgomery County Courthouse in his sexual assault retrial, in Norristown, Pennsylvania, U.S., April 26, 2018. Mark Makela/Pool via Reuters

A former administrator for the women's basketball team at Temple University, Cosby's alma mater, Constand is one of about 50 women who have accused him of sexual assault. All of the other allegations are believed to be too old to be prosecuted.

Image via Ricardo Camacho / Ohio Ministry Network

R. Marie Griffith, director of the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University in St. Louis, said that the Assemblies of God, founded in 1914, has had a “fascinating history” of women’s leadership, with women leading congregations and speaking from pulpits in its early days and later often finding their roles restricted.

the Web Editors 4-25-2018

Activists and DACA recipients march up Broadway during the start of their 'Walk to Stay Home,' a five-day 250-mile walk from New York to Washington D.C., to demand that Congress pass a Clean Dream Act, in Manhattan, New York, U.S., February 15, 2018. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

“DACA’s rescission was arbitrary and capricious because the Department failed adequately to explain its conclusion that the program was unlawful,” Bates wrote in his opinion statement released Tuesday. “Neither the meager legal reasoning nor the assessment of litigation risk provided by DHS to support its rescission decision is sufficient to sustain termination of the DACA program.”

Elizabeth Beyer 4-25-2018

The Supreme Court on Tuesday debated whether new congressional districts drawn up in Texas constitute “racial gerrymandering” because they intentionally dilute the voting blocs of new Latino and black residents, a case that could have a lasting effect on how electoral districts are drawn.

the Web Editors 4-24-2018

Image via John Kittelsrud / Flickr

Described by Christopher Mathias of the Huffington Post as "the most aggressive over-policing [he has] ever seen," images circulating on Twitter showed heavily armed police officers pointing weapons at seemingly unarmed counterprotesters. 

Rose Marie Berger 4-23-2018

Image via Yves Herman/Reuters

"America, keep your peace. You don't know how precious it is and how terrible is war."

Jeremy Deaton 4-23-2018

A coalition of faith leaders took to the steps of the Interior Department April 19 to ask Secretary Ryan Zinke to curb methane leaks at natural gas drilling sites. Notably, the group included a representative from the evangelical community.

the Web Editors 4-20-2018

Image via RNS

This year Dr. Cone received the 2018 Grawemeyer Award for Religion from Louisville Presbyterian Seminary for the The Cross and the Lynching Tree which “passionately conjoins the provocative images of the first century cross and the twentieth-century lynching tree.” As he writes, “Both are symbols of the death of the innocent, mob hysteria, humiliation, and terror. They both also reveal a thirst for life that refuses to let the worst determine our final meaning and demonstrate that God can transform ugliness into beauty, into God’s liberating presence.” His theological memoir, Said I Wasn’t Gonna Tell Nobody, will be published this October by Orbis.

the Web Editors 4-20-2018

"You’re talking about state violence against communities. You have to speak up and take a stand about that. There’s not a nice way to just play in the middle."

People visit the Columbine memorial in Littleton, Colorado, U.S., April 19, 2018. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
 

Thousands of students across the United States will mark the 19th anniversary of the massacre at Columbine High School by walking out of classes on Friday, in a show of unity intended to put pressure on politicians to enact tighter gun restrictions.

Shelby Fleig 4-19-2018

Witnesses who lost children to opiod addicition or are former addicts speak to the House subcommittee on health April 19, 2018. Photo by Shelby Fleig

Brian Mendell committed suicide at age 25 because he was ashamed of his opioid addiction, despite not having used drugs in more than a year, his father told a House subcommittee Thursday as he demanded that Congress pass laws to fight the epidemic. Mendell is one of the hundreds of Americans who die every day as result of substance abuse.

Kathy Khang speaks at the session April 13 at the Festival of Faith and Writing. RNS photo by Emily McFarlan Miller

The panel of Christian women writers described the night Donald Trump won the presidency as, in the words of one, “a nightmare.”

“As the numbers rolled in, [there was] just this sense of this nightmare is really true – our family, the body of Christ, is actually going to vote in a way that dehumanized our presence here in this country,” said Sandra Maria Van Opstal, a second-generation Latina and the executive pastor of Grace and Peace Community in Chicago.

Angela Denker 4-18-2018

Who wouldn’t want to defend the right to a glorious eternity? Who wouldn’t fight to defend that salvation, wouldn’t carry a gun if that’s what they were told was necessary?

Blanchard Hall at Wheaton College near Chicago. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

About 50 evangelical Christian leaders gathered early this week to discuss the future of evangelicalism amid concerns their movement has become too closely associated with President Trump’s polarizing politics.

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