Catherine Pepinster, Religion News Service

Catherine Pepinster writes for Religion News Service.

Posts By This Author

‘Pope’s Sociologist’ Fights Human Trafficking From the Vatican

Image via Margaret Archer / RNS

Victims of trafficking get 45 days of what the government calls “recovery and reflection,” and care is offered via the Salvation Army. But traumatized, destitute people need far more than help for just six weeks, Archer discovered. This is where her parish came in.

Anglican Bishops Prep for Tough Talks on Same-Sex Marriage

Image via RNS/St John's Choir

The primates of the worldwide Anglican Communion will face another tough test next week when they gather in the U.K. to grapple with the Scottish Episcopal Church’s backing of same-sex marriage, among other issues.

The bishops will meet in Canterbury two months after the first gay Anglican wedding took place in Scotland, following the SEC’s June vote to alter its canon law, which had previously defined marriage as between a man and a woman.

The Book of Common Prayer Gets a Glossary

Image via RNS/Wikimedia Commons

Now the Church of England’s trainee clergy are being offered help to understand Cranmer’s more obscure prose through a publication of a glossary. All first-year ordinands – the trainee priests studying at theological colleges – are to be given a copy of the guide together with a free copy of the Book of Common Prayer, an English-language product of the 16th-century break between England and the Roman Catholic Church, where Latin ruled.

Mourning in Manchester, Religious and Secular Traditions Meet and Meld

Image via RNS/REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

A week after a terrorist bomb killed more than 20 and left scores injured, the people of Manchester will make their way through the streets of their grief-stricken city in one of its most traditional and religious events: the Whit Walk.

This will be a moment where the old Manchester meets the new, when the Christian tradition of the walk, commemorating the Feast of Whitsun — or Holy Trinity — meets the secular rituals that have come to define public mourning since this increasingly irreligious nation said goodbye to Princess Diana, who died exactly 20 years ago.

How the British Developed a Taste for Religion in Politics

Image via RNS/Reuters/Toby Melville

May grew up in southeast England, the daughter of a Church of England vicar at a time when much of the nation was, by default, Anglican. In the 1950s and ’60s, the majority of people were married, baptized, and had their funerals in the Church of England, the established church. It was also a time when, despite the nation’s Christianity, few spoke about their faith, or about that of politicians.

The Anglican Communion Has Rejected One Gay Theologian for Bishop 7 Times. Is Unity Possible?

Image via RNS/ACNS/Scott Gunn

John, a 64-year-old theologian and dean of St. Albans Cathedral, has made no secret of his own homosexuality, and is in a civil partnership with another priest, a relationship he says is celibate. He has also made clear his support for same-sex marriage.

That has made John the subject of hard-liners’ ire. Supporters say his honesty about his homosexuality, and his views about same-sex marriage, have cost him the bishop’s seat, while some other bishops are known to be “quietly gay.”

Subscribe