Kimberly Winston is a freelance religion reporter whose work has appeared in the Washington Post, USA Today, and the Chicago Tribune. She is the 2005 recipient of the American Academy of Relgion's award for best religion reporting.
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5 Faith Facts About Tim Kaine: ‘I Do What I Do for Spiritual Reasons’
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton announced Tim Kaine, the junior Democratic senator from Virginia and former governor of that state, as her vice presidential running mate Friday.
Kaine, a Roman Catholic, will appear with Clinton, a Methodist, at next week’s Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
5 Faith Facts on Mike Pence, a ‘Born-Again, Evangelical Catholic’
Pence's unusual faith mix has shaped him as a politician.
GOP Platform: Plenty for Conservative Evangelicals to Love
In a section titled “Defending Marriage Against an Activist Judiciary,” Republicans say they “condemn” the Supreme Court’s ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, which made same-sex marriage the law of the land. Religious conservatives from several denominations also have opposed this ruling as the work of “activist judges,” a charge and a term echoed in the platform.
US Churches to Russia: 'We're Not Leaving'
Several American-based religious denominations remain defiant in the face of new laws that would ban them from proselytizing in Russia.
The so-called “Yarovaya laws” make it illegal to preach, proselytize, or hand out religious materials outside of specially designated places. The laws also give the Russian government wide scope to monitor and record electronic messages and phone calls.
New Film Explores Long-Ignored War Crimes of World War II
A new film opening July 8 focuses attention on a long-ignored war crime — the sanctioned and systematic rape of Polish nuns during World War II.
The Innocents (Les Innocentes) tells the story of a young French doctor who is called to a Polish convent to aid a young novice in a breech labor. She discovers that Soviet soldiers, with the approval of their officers, raped dozens of the nuns during the occupation, leaving five of them pregnant.
California Bill Would Limit College's Religious Exemptions
A bill wending its way through the California Legislature would limit religious colleges’ ability to claim an exemption from federal Title IX regulations that bar discrimination against LGBT students and faculty.
Only schools that prepare students for pastoral ministry would be allowed the religious exemption under California Senate Bill 1146 — which passed the state Senate in May and is scheduled for a hearing in the state Assembly on June 30.
What Does Pope Francis Mean When He Says 'Apologize'?
While Francis’ comments on the plane were not officially sanctioned by the Catholic Church, they are another indication that the new boss ain’t the same as the old boss.
'Free State of Jones' Stars Matthew McConaughy as an Anti-Slavery, Bible-Quoting Ex-Confederate Soldier
It’s a long way from Hollywood, yet a swampy corner of southeast Mississippi has given the film world its latest hero — or maybe antihero.
His name is Newton Knight, born 180 years ago and played by Matthew McConaughey in the The Free State of Jones, which opened around the country on June 24.
Swastikas in London Stoke Fears of Rise in Anti-Semitism
Swastikas found in a children’s playground in London are the latest sign of anti-Semitism on the rise in Europe.
The hand-drawn swastikas appeared on four consecutive days, June 14-17, in a park in the Stamford Hill neighborhood, The Guardian newspaper reported June 20. A home for British Jewish veterans is nearby.
Report Says List of 'Islamophobic Groups' Reaches New High
A Muslim civil rights organization says that a record number of groups are spreading hatred of Muslims and have raised more than $200 million in funding since 2008.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim advocacy group, issued its findings in a report conducted with the Center for Race and Gender at the University of California, Berkeley, released June 20.
What's Behind the Debate Over Phrases Like 'Radical Islam'?
Tragedies like the June 12 Orlando shooting seem to happen like clockwork, with the U.S. now averaging one mass shooting every day. And in cases where the shooter has a Muslim-sounding name, terms like “terrorist,” “extremist,” “radical,” joined with “Islam” quickly appear.
President Obama took a swipe at the use of such terms earlier this week. In response to Donald Trump’s accusation that he has an ulterior motive in avoiding the term “radical Islam,” the president said the term was “a political distraction.”
Tiny Kosovo Offers a Model for Muslim-Jewish Friendship
Three years ago, Joshua Stanton was walking around Peja, a Balkan city where the skyline is punctured with the dainty minarets of three historic mosques, when he decided to put on his yarmulke.
“I am Jewish,” he thought. “I want to put it on.”
In a First, Trump PAC Reaches Out to Amish
Will the bearded, bonneted, barn-building Amish vote for the clean-shaven, combed-over, casino-building Donald Trump?
A new political action committee is betting $41,000 they will.
Indiana Pastor Can't Explain Trump's Appeal to Evangelicals
An Indiana evangelical leader says he and other Christians are in an “untenable situation” after Senator Ted Cruz’s withdrawal from the 2016 presidential race.
Speaking on NPR’s Morning Edition program, Ron Johnson Jr., head of the Indiana Pastors Alliance, could not explain why 50 percent of Indiana’s evangelicals voted for Donald Trump, according to exit polls.
Humanists Push for National Day of Reason
Not all Americans pray. So the American Humanist Association, among the largest national advocacy groups of nonbelievers and other secularists, wants the first Thursday in May to be recognized by Congress as a National Day of Reason. But that day is already designated as the National Day of Prayer, with a 65-year history of support from Congress, state and local governments and every sitting president since its inception in 1952.
'Game of Thrones' Returns, and So Do Its Religions
Game of Thrones, the engrossing, sometimes disturbing, always exciting TV series returns for a sixth season Sunday night on HBO. The network is not releasing screeners, so it’s anybody’s guess what’s going to happen. But one thing you can bet on — the television show, like the books by George R.R. Martin they are based on, involve storylines with religious elements. Considering where some of those stories left off, religion may come further to the fore in the new season. Here’s a primer on a few of the religions of Westeros, the imagined, medieval-inflected world of Game of Thrones.
Bipartisan Commission: LGBT Discrimination on 'Religious Liberty' Grounds Is Human Rights Violation
Citing “religious liberty” as a reason for denying one class of citizens bathroom access, equal housing, or services is a human rights violation.
That’s the finding of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, an independent, bipartisan agency that advises the president and Congress on civil rights matters. The commission issued a statement April 18 saying it “strongly condemns recent state laws passed, and proposals being considered, under the guise of so-called ‘religious liberty’ which target members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community for discrimination.”
Dying Christopher Hitchens Considered Christianity, New Book Claims
Before his death at 62, Christopher Hitchens, the uber-atheist and best-selling author of God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, considered becoming a Christian. That is the provocative claim of The Faith of Christopher Hitchens: The Restless Soul of the World’s Most Notorious Atheist, a controversial new book winning both applause and scorn while underscoring, again, the divide between believers and atheists Hitchens’ own life and work often displayed.
Majority of Christians Oppose Payday Lenders as 'Sinful'
To a majority of Christians, those who provide payday loans, with their three-digit interest rates, are sinners. That’s among the findings of a new poll conducted by LifeWay Research , a Nashville-based Christian group, that surveyed 1,000 self-identifying Christians in 30 states with no regulations on payday lending.
District Court to Spaghetti: You Are Not a God
A federal court has ruled that the Flying Spaghetti Monster, referred to as “His Flying Noodliness” by fans and followers, is not, alas, the object of a real religion. In a 16-page decision, the U.S. District Court of Nebraska ruled that Pastafarianism is satire, not sacred, and that anyone who thinks it is a religion has made an error “of basic reading comprehension.”