Image via Madeleine Buckley/ RNS 

“Since all of these folk make a big deal about putting their hand on the Bible and swearing themselves into office, we’ve come to let them know what’s in the Bible,” said the Rev. William J. Barber II, a North Carolina pastor at the forefront of state and national protests focused on poverty and civil rights.

Image via Reuters/Carlos Barria.

A U.S. official who was briefed by some of his counterparts about the encounter said some of the leaders who attended the dinner were surprised to see Trump leave his seat and engage Putin in an extended private conversation with no one else from the U.S. side present.

President Trump prays during the National Prayer Breakfast event in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 2, 2017. Photo by Carlos Barria/Reuters/ RNS

The bill cuts funding for the IRS by $149 million from fiscal year 2017, and the IRS wouldn’t be able to use any funding it receives to investigate a church for making such endorsements, according to the bill. It would have to get the consent of the IRS commissioner, who then would report to Congress on the investigation.

Ray Tensing listening as the judge declares a mistrial in death of Samuel DuBose in Cincinnati, OhioJune 23, 2017. REUTERS/William Philpott

Ohio prosecutors said on Tuesday they will not pursue a third trial against a white former university police officer whose two previous trials for fatally shooting a black motorist during a traffic stop ended with hung juries.

Image via Reuters/Aaron P. Bernstein

In the United States, the latest setback delivered a major political blow to Trump, who has failed to win any major legislative initiative in the first six months of his presidency.

Rena Schild / Shutterstock.com

A former suburban Dallas policeman was indicted by a grand jury for murder in the shooting death of a black teenager who was in a car moving away from the officer when he opened fire with a rifle, Dallas County prosecutors said on Monday. Roy Oliver, 37, a white officer who was fired by the Balch Springs Police Department for policy violations a few days after the shooting, was also charged with four counts of aggravated assault relating to the death of Jordan Edwards, 15, in late April.

Hundreds of protesters marched 17 miles on Friday in protest to NRA ads. Photo by Fatemeh Jamalpour / Medill News Service

“The NRA feed gun lobbies, gun manufacturers, they feed the funeral industry more than any other industry,” said Tamika Mallory, co-president of the Women March, which organized the protest along with other activist groups, including those representing victims of gun violence.

the Web Editors 7-14-2017

1. The Survival of a Southern Baptist Who Dared to Oppose Trump
CNN profiles Russell Moore, Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty lead, and chronicles his past couple of years from staunch opposition to Trump, to nearly losing his job amid evangelical backlash, to ensuring denominational condemnation of the alt-right, and finally, to finding himself back in the good graces of denominational leadership.

2. Clergy Arrested Outside McConnell’s Office While Protesting Health Care Bill
Rev. William Barber II was among those arrested.

3. What Keeps Bike Share So White?
It’s not a lack of interest.

Image via RNS/Barna.

Chattanooga, Tenn., was the most churched city, at 59 percent. The California region including San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose was the most unchurched, at 60 percent, and the most dechurched, at 47 percent.

Image via AP/J. Scott Applewhite.

“We’re saying today it’s time for other clergy to come. It’s time for moral agents to step up. It’s time for us to go down to the house of power and challenge the way power is being used.”

More than 700 people from 16 states rallied Wednesday at a Capitol Hill church to oppose the Trump administration’s proposed $6.2 billion cut to federal housing programs. Protesters held signs while shouting, “Housing is our right,” “Stop selling our neighborhoods to Wall Street,” and “No cuts to housing.”

Image via Reuters/Darrin Zammit Lupi

The opposition Nationalist Party backed the introduction of same-sex marriage, despite fierce criticism from some conservatives, who said it marked a damaging departure from the party's Christian-Democratic principles.

Photo via Reuters/RNS 

In the wake of Trump’s executive orders restricting travel to the U.S. from seven — and under the revised travel ban, six — Muslim-majority countries, the report said, “the religious affiliation of refugees has come under scrutiny.”

A mountain is reflected in a bay that used to be covered by the Sheldon glacier on the Antarctic peninsula, January 14, 2009. REUTERS/Alister Doyle
 

One of the biggest icebergs on record has broken away from Antarctica, scientists said on Wednesday, creating an extra hazard for ships around the continent as it breaks up. The 1 trillion ton iceberg, measuring 5,800 square km, calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica sometime between July 10 and 12, said scientists at the University of Swansea and the British Antarctic Survey.

the Web Editors 7-12-2017

FILE PHOTO: Education Secretary Betsy DeVos testifies before the Senate Appropriations Committee on Capitol Hill. June 6, 2017. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein
 

In a letter published in Teen Vogue Wednesday, 114 survivors of sexual assault ask Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos not to dismantle Title IX guidance they say “enabled many of us to complete our education.” The letter comes the day after it was announced that DeVos would this week meet with survivors’ rights groups — alongside men’s rights groups — to advise the department on the government’s role in ensuring Title IX enforcement.

More than 500 people gathered in a hot and dusty Pennsylvania cornfield yesterday afternoon to join the Catholic sisters of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ for the dedication of a new outdoor chapel, built on land about to be seized from them by a corporate developer planning to build a natural gas pipeline.


FILE PHOTO: Pope Francis walks at the end of a canonization mass for seven new saints in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican Oct. 16, 2016. REUTERS/Tony Gentile /File Photo
 

Pope Francis made one of the most significant changes in centuries to the Roman Catholic Church's saint-making procedures on Tuesday, adding a new category for people who give their lives to save others.

FILE PHOTO - Donald Trump Jr. arrives at Trump Tower in New York City, Jan. 18. REUTERS/Stephanie Keith/File Photo
 

Donald Trump Jr. was told in an email before meeting a Russian lawyer who he thought had information damaging to Hillary Clinton that the material was part of a Russian government effort to help his father's presidential campaign, the New York Times reported on Monday.

Citing three people with knowledge of the email, the newspaper said publicist Rob Goldstone indicated in the email to President Donald Trump's eldest son that the Russian government was the source of the potentially damaging information, according to the Times.

Image via RNS/Pew Research Center

Do churches and religious organizations have a positive impact on the way things are going in the United States?

Americans are divided on that point, according to a Pew Research Center survey released on July 10 that shows they align along predictable party lines.

the Web Editors 7-10-2017

Image via Reuters/Brendan McDermid.

Sexual orientation change efforts — more commonly known as "reparative therapy" or "conversion therapy" — are currently legal in the United Kingdom. While the government condemns the practice, conversion therapy is not illegal. In March, a petition seeking to change the practice's legal status failed to garner enough signatures to be considered in Parliament.