Andrew J. Wight 12-22-2020

Kits of aid ready at a shelter in the municipality of Choluteca, Honduras, in the weeks following Hurricanes Eta and Iota. Photo courtesy Living Water International

In the wake of two devastating November hurricanes estimated to have killed over 90 people in Honduras, church-run albergues (shelters) across the Central American country have played a key role in housing thousands of people displaced from their homes. While these shelters provide essential care, health experts from faith-based and secular NGOS alike have warned that cramped living conditions, a lack of protective equipment, and the complete disruption of victims’ lives could lead to another wave of COVID-19 in the country, even those areas far from the epicenter of the hurricane damage.

The family Mota Velazco uses a telescope to view Jupiter and Saturn during a planetary conjunction, at the border crossing between Mexico and the United States in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico Dec. 21, 2020. REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez

The evening sky over the Northern Hemisphere treated stargazers to a once-in-a-lifetime illusion on Monday as the solar system's two biggest planets appeared to meet in a celestial alignment that astronomers call the "Great Conjunction."

The spot in the U.S. Capitol's crypt where a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee had been, now sits empty. Washington, D.C., Dec. 21, 2020. REUTERS/ Ken Cedeno

 

 A statue of Black civil rights activist Barbara Johns, who played a key role in the desegregation of the public school system, will be installed in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda, officials said on Monday, replacing one of a leader of the pro-slavery Confederacy.

Betsy Shirley 12-18-2020

Web traffic slumps in mid-December, that’s just the way the internet works. And we — the people who make the internet, or at least, Sojourners’ humble corner of it — never much mind because we assume it means you are busy doing wholesome things like baking cookies, building snowfolk, or calling your elected officials to voice your support for the newest bipartisan COVID-19 relief bill.

U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM) questions Major Adam DeMarco of the District of Columbia National Guard as he testifies about the June 1 confrontation with protesters at Lafayette Square near the White House during a House Natural Resources Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., July 28, 2020. REUTERS/Leah Millis/Pool

President-elect Joe Biden will nominate Rep. Deb Haaland to serve as his interior secretary, according to a person familiar with the matter. Haaland, a Democratic congresswoman from New Mexico since 2019, would be the first Native American Cabinet secretary and the first to oversee the department, whose jurisdiction includes tribal lands.

Mitchell Atencio 12-16-2020

A girl and her father on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Ryan Rodrick Beiler / Shutterstock.com

As the sun sets on each Election Day, people turn to exit polls to understand what happened and why.  After the 2020 presidential election, exit polls suggested that outgoing President Donald Trump performed better among Hispanic/Latinx voters, earning reactions from pundits and former presidents alike. Some have suggested this is due to splits among Hispanic Catholics and Hispanic Protestants, but polls alone may not tell the full story.

Cassie M. Chew 12-15-2020

Belongings on the lawn of an evicted house in Detroit. Peek Creative Collective / Shutterstock.com

“There are a lot more people who are poor, but living above the poverty line,” said Anne Price, president of the Insight Center, an economic justice advocacy group based in Oakland, Calif. “The measure that we use is so antiquated, not just in how it calculates a household budget and what's left out, but also because it doesn't reflect real, contemporary lived experience, different household types, or regional differences.”

Lexi McMenamin 12-14-2020

A sign directs healthcare workers to a rehearsal for the administration of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in Indianapolis on Dec. 11, 2020.  REUTERS/Bryan Woolston

Initially, the available doses of the vaccine are limited; experts estimate that it could be months before the vaccine is available to most Americans. And for the incoming administration as well as public health experts, this raises a number of ethical questions, most importantly: Who should be the first to receive the vaccine?

Betsy Shirley 12-11-2020

The Macy's "Believe" sign on the side of the 34th Street Herald Square flagship store.  DW labs Incorporated / Shutterstock.com

Believe it or not, here we are. In the 10 stories below, you’ll see people wrestling with — and sometimes accepting — all the changes life throws our way.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday let three American Muslim men sue several FBI agents who they accused of placing them on the government's "no-fly list" for refusing to become informants, rejecting a challenge to the lawsuit by President Donald Trump's administration.

“We see giving women access to reproductive health care as being pro-life,” Manson said of Catholics for Choice, which was founded in 1973 by Catholics who believe that the faith tradition supports a person’s right to follow their conscience on matters of their own reproductive health.

Lexi McMenamin 12-10-2020

Anti-death penalty protesters arrested on the steps of the Supreme Court in 2017. Photo by JP Keenan/Sojourners

Today, 40-year-old Brandon Bernard is scheduled to be executed for a crime he was involved in at age 18. While Bernard was not the person who pulled the trigger on the two people murdered — that man, Christopher Vialva, was executed in September — he was eligible for capital punishment, which can only be handed down to legal adults.

Woman holds vials labelled "COVID-19 Coronavirus Vaccine" over dry ice  on December 5, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration.

As a COVID-19 vaccine gets closer to a public rollout, public health experts and policymakers in the United States are likely to encounter a big cultural barrier: Christian nationalism.

Mitchell Atencio 12-08-2020

Georgia state Sen.-elect Kim Jackson. Photo courtesy Kim Jackson.

In November, Rev. Kim Jackson, an Episcopal priest, won a seat representing Georgia’s District 41 in the state Senate. Her election is celebrated as the first out LGBTQ person elected to Georgia’s state Senate — one of several that caught national attention for LGBTQ inclusion in politics. None of this, Jackson said, would have been possible without role models who taught her what she could become.

Gina Ciliberto 12-08-2020

Joe Biden walks past solar panels while touring the Plymouth Area Renewable Energy Initiative in Plymouth, New Hampshire on June 4, 2019. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

“We have to end fracking. Biden knows it,” Rev. Fletcher Harper said.

Jenna Barnett 12-04-2020

2020, which allegedly ends later this month, has made us mourn, and within that and despite that, it’s made us creative. Below are 10 articles about how we survived, how we didn’t, and how we still could.

Cassie M. Chew 12-04-2020
The cover of Barack Obama's new memoir, A Promised Land.

The cover of Barack Obama's new memoir, A Promised Land.

The scripture-inspired title of Obama’s latest book comes from the idea that a better America ― one that lives more fully into its democractic promise ― is still possible. “[E]ven if we experience hardships and disappointments along the way, that I at least still have faith we can create a more perfect union. Not a perfect union, but a more perfect union,” Obama told CBS 60 Minutes correspondent Scott Pelley in a Nov. 16 interview.

Jenna Barnett 11-24-2020

De-politicizing refugee resettlement, virtual Thanksgiving, and other stories our editors are reading.

Curtis Yee 11-24-2020

Children celebrate after media announced that Joe Biden won the 2020 U.S. presidential election, at Atlanta, Nov. 7, 2020. REUTERS/Brandon Bell/File Photo

During the 2016 presidential election, 22 percent of eligible Georgia voters were unregistered. Four years later that number has dropped to just two percent.

Mitchell Atencio 11-24-2020

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Rev. Raphael Warnock speaks during an event in Atlanta on November 3, 2020. Jessica McGowan/Pool via REUTERS

Rev. Dr. Willie Jennings, professor of systematic theology and Africana studies at Yale Divinity School and author of After Whiteness: An Education in Belonging, said that the critiques against U.S. Senate candidate Rev. Dr. Raphael Warnock are an attempt to “take from Black religious figures” what is granted “to white religious figures.”