Religious Diversity News

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Neighborly Faith urges evangelicals to find a ‘third way’ to befriend Muslims

For evangelical Christians, the importance of evangelizing is right there in the name.

But it’s not the best approach to building relationships with Muslims and people of other faiths, according to Matthew Kaemingk, assistant professor of Christian ethics at Fuller Seminary and author of “Christian Hospitality and Muslim Immigration in an Age of Fear.”

“Muslims are not a mission or a project that you work on like a science experiment or something,” Kaemingk told an auditorium of young evangelicals Friday night (Nov. 1) at the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism at Wheaton College in the Chicago suburbs.

Source: Neighborly Faith urges evangelicals to find a ‘third way’ to befriend Muslims – Religion News Service

Sustainable Halal Meat is Making Inroads in Muslim Communities

On a tidy two-lane road outside Columbus, Ohio, a hand-painted sign in red and white script hangs on the edge of a corn field. It reads “Bismi Allah Farms,” derived from the Arabic phrase “bismillah,” meaning “in the name of Allah,” or God, and a word said in reverence by practicing Muslims numerous times a day.

But “farm” is a bit of a misnomer. The four-acre operation, run by Ahmed Fram, a Moroccan immigrant and his family, is actually a licensed halal slaughter facility, where a centuries-old, sacred religious ritual converges with modern demand in a two-car garage retrofitted for the task.

Source: Sustainable Halal Meat is Making Inroads in Muslim Communities | Civil Eats

One year before election, Christian leaders cross divides to call for respect

This Sunday (Nov. 3) marks exactly one year until the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

And Christian leaders across theological and political divides are kicking off an initiative called “Golden Rule 2020: A Call for Dignity and Respect in Politics,” hoping the next 365 days won’t be a repeat of 2016’s divisive election season.

Source: One year before election, Christian leaders cross divides to call for respect – Religion News Service

Midway ISD offers to settle religious rights suit stating Cherokee student forced to remove eagle feather graduation cap

The Midway Independent School District has offered to settle a lawsuit alleging it violated the religious rights of a student who is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation.

During last year’s commencement ceremony, an assistant principal required the student to remove a graduation cap bedecked with traditional Cherokee beads and a sacred eagle feather, according to the lawsuit, which remains pending in 414th District Court.

Source: Midway ISD offers to settle religious rights suit stating Cherokee student forced to remove eagle feather graduation cap | Education | wacotrib.com

Resolutions introduced in US Congress to recognize Sikhs’ contributions in America

Marking 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak, resolutions have been introduced in the US Congress to recognize the contributions and sacrifices made by Sikhs in the United States and the discrimination they have faced in the country and around the world.

One of the resolution introduced by Senators Todd Young and Ben Cardin on Thursday recognizes the historical, cultural, and religious significance of the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak on November 12.

Source: Resolutions introduced in US Congress to recognize Sikhs’ contributions in America – Times of India

Can an app teach Buddhist tenets? 

In August of 2019, scholars of Buddhism who specialize in social media research searched on Apple’s App Store and Google Play and found over 500 apps associated with Buddhism. The majority of the apps centered on the practice of mindfulness.

Source: Can an app teach Buddhist tenets? | Faith and Values | herald-review.com

Mike Pompeo’s State Department approves Christian faith group for employees

All year, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has made news for efforts that critics worry are crossing church-state separation lines. In July, he launched a Commission on Unalienable Rights, created by religious conservatives who have bemoaned growing LGBTQ equality. Then in October, a private Pompeo speech, “Being a Christian Leader,” was advertised across the top of the State Department homepage.

Less noticed was the creation of the State Department’s first-ever faith-based affinity group.

Source: Mike Pompeo’s State Department approves Christian faith group for employees – The Washington Post

Lawsuit: Muslim boy questioned at Ohio school about religion

The parents of a 10-year-old Muslim boy who said he was questioned by an Ohio student teacher about his patriotism and religious beliefs and was told to undress to determine if he had been physically abused at home have filed a federal lawsuit claiming the boy’s civil rights were violated last November.

The lawsuit filed last week names the Lakeview Local School District, a teacher, the student teacher and a school nurse as defendants. The district is based in Cortland, roughly 65 miles (105 kilometers) southeast of Cleveland.

Source: Lawsuit: Muslim boy questioned at Ohio school about religion | Religion | phillytrib.com

Cuban Fusion Pioneers Sintesís On Queen, Santería And Prog Rock

Just when you think you know a lot about Cuban music, along comes a pair of musicians who tell me one that of the major influences on their pioneering jazz/rock/santeria band was Queen.

Yes, that Queen.

In 1976, Carlos Alsonso and his wife Ele Valdés started Síntesis as a prog- and jazz-rock outfit in Havana, Cuba. After participating in a festival that featured santería — the Yoruba spiritual tradition that developed in Cuba among West African descendants — they were enthralled and determined to incorporate this sacred music into their own.

Source: Cuban Fusion Pioneers Sintesís On Queen, Santería And Prog Rock : Alt.Latino : NPR

As witchcraft mainstreams, it’s Halloween every day

Nearly 25 years ago this October, I attended my first full moon ritual. There, surrounded by people eager to harness the power of the celestial body, a Wiccan high priestess told me that a witch’s day begins at dusk. I understood her point — the night promises mystery — but I couldn’t relate to it.

After all, my maternal grandmother’s kitchen in the Bronx bubbled with magic at nearly every hour. While the stovetop brewed hearty pots of tomato sauce, minestrone and pig’s feet, the counter held only a small bowl filled with water. To the untrained eye it was nothing special; in fact, the bowl looked like any other culinary accessory.

Source: As witchcraft mainstreams, it’s Halloween every day – The Washington Post

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