This Week in Interfaith America: A News Roundup

U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock of Georgia speaks during the Center on Faith and Justice launch event at Gerogetown University, Nov. 17, 2021, in Washington. Photo by Phil Humnicky/Georgetown University

Every week, we compile a list of stand-out stories about religious diversity and interfaith engagement. To share feedback or make a suggestion for next week’s top 10, email us here.

What the Metaverse Means for Religion Paul Brandeis Raushenbush, Senior Advisor for Public Affairs and Innovation at IFYC, writes that Facebook's name change is a call to action for all who care about religion.The metaverse has dramatic implications that should make all of us sit up, lean in, and claim our role in shaping the worlds within the world that is being created,” he says.

IFYC’s Guide to Gratitude This Holiday Season  Silma Suba and Kristina Viera of IFYC share what colleagues have been watching, reading and listening to that cultivates an attitude for gratitude.

On Loving the ‘Spiritual Misfits’ and Reimagining the Possible For Interfaith America, five interfaith leaders share readings and resources that inspire them, give them hope and offer solace in turbulent times.

How Meatpacking Work and Faith Intersect in the Heartland. For Religion & Politics, Eric C. Miller interviews Kristy Nabhan-Warren about her new book, Meatpacking America: How Migration, Work, and Faith Unite and Divide the Heartland.”

New Initiatives Aims to Change How Movies Portray Muslims Colin Moynihan of The New York Times reports on a new database to encourage representation of Muslims in film. “The project, the Pillars Muslim Artist Database, was announced on Tuesday by the Pillars Fund, an advocacy group in Chicago.” 

Images of Love, Hope and Unity Surround Kenosha. A year ago, IFYC’s Paul Brandeis Raushenbush wrote this story about interfaith efforts to bring calm to Kenosha, Wisconsin. To learn more about interfaith efforts in this community, check out Congregations United to Serve Humanity Kenosha or this piece by Deon J. Hampton of NBC News: Religious Leaders Call for Justice and Peace Ahead of Verdict in Rittenhouse Case.  

Black Pastors Gather in Brunswick to Support Ahmaud Arbury’s Family For NPR, Liz Baker and Debbie Elliott report on an interfaith effort in Georgia in response to a statement from defense attorney Kevin Gough: “ ‘We don't want any more Black pastors coming in here ... sitting with the victim's family; trying to influence the jurors in this case,’ argued Gough, who represents William "Roddie" Bryan, and who compared it to a mob trial where gang members pack the gallery in a silent threat to the jury.”

Warnock, Sewell Discuss 'Sacred Voting Rights' -- and Whether God is Black Jack Jenkins of Religion News Service reports that the two lawmakers appeared at "Race, Religion and the Assault on Voting Rights," the inaugural event at Georgetown University's Center on Faith and Justice.

What Standup Comedians Can Teach the Church. Russell Moore in Christianity Today writes that for preachers, the “element of surprise—an involuntary reaction that goes beyond our sets of ideologies and expectations—is actually a key part of what we are called to do, and the lack of it partially explains why we so often fail.”

Baylor’s Black Gospel Archive and Learning Center Now Open to the Public. For Baptist News Global, Jeff Hampton writes of a ground-breaking new music archive in Texas.

 

 

#Interfaith is a self-paced, online learning opportunity designed to equip a new generation of leaders with the awareness and skills to promote interfaith cooperation online. The curriculum is free to Interfaith America readers; please use the scholarship code #Interfaith100. #Interfaith is presented by IFYC in collaboration with ReligionAndPublicLife.org.

 

more from IFYC

Join IFYC on February 7 at 10 AM CT for an important conversation with Black thought-leaders, activists, and organizers engaged in on-the-ground efforts to destigmatize HIV and eradicate the virus.
The metaverse has dramatic implications that should make all of us sit up, lean in, and claim our role in shaping the worlds within the world that is being created.  
A chance encounter with an army chaplain put Colonel Khallid Shabazz's military career on a different path.
Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker, who survived a hostage-taking at his synagogue last Saturday, gave the closing remarks at an online White House briefing Friday, with an impassioned plea for civility.
Rather than focusing on canonical doctrines, a workshop trains educators to teach “lived religion” -- all the creative things that people do with their traditions.
The Vietnamese Buddhist monk, described as 'the second most famous Buddhist in the world, after the Dalai Lama,' by one expert, founded a worldwide network of monastic centers. He once said: "My life is my teaching. My life is my message.”
Many content creators use their platforms to build community beyond their brick-and-mortar congregations, to dispel myths, break stereotypes and invite people from diverse faiths to get a glimpse into their lives.
IFYC's innovative online learning experience, #Interfaith: Engaging Religious Diversity Online, offers lessons on how to approach others online in a way that leads to building bridges.
Lessons from Thich Nhat Hanh, the person who nominated Martin Luther King Jr. for the Nobel Peace Prize and encouraged King to speak out against the war in Vietnam.
What Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk and activist Thich Nhat Hanh taught me about the power of mindful breathing through art.
A scholar of democratic virtues explains why Dominican monk Thomas Aquinas’ thoughts on hope are relevant today.
From covering spirituality in Silicon Valley to writing an online newsletter about her own journey to Judaism, reporter Nellie Bowles keeps finding innovative ways to reflect on religion and technology.
Six ways religious and spiritual leaders can help the internet serve their communities right now.
At the request of his editors at Religion News Service, Omar Suleiman writes about waiting with hostages’ families.
Regardless of what happens on Capitol Hill, the PNBC leaders said they plan to lobby Congress in March and register voters weekly in their congregations and communities.
King’s exasperation at self-satisfied white Christians holds up a mirror that is still painfully accurate today.
A day before the U.S. Senate was expected to take up significant legislation on voting rights that is looking likely to fail, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s eldest son condemned federal lawmakers over their inaction.
The congregation’s rabbi, Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker, is particularly well connected to the larger interfaith community and on good terms with many Muslim leaders.
For Martin Luther King Day, an interfaith panel reflects on the sacredness of the vote and the legacy of Reverend King.
In his new book, Princeton historian Julian E. Zelizer reexamines the life of Abraham Joshua Heschel and finds lessons for interfaith political activism today.
King drew criticism from Billy Graham, who told journalists that he thought King was wrong to link anti-war efforts with the civil rights movement.

The opinions contained in this piece are solely the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of Interfaith Youth Core. Interfaith America encourages a wide range of views and strives to maintain a respectful tone with a goal of greater understanding and cooperation between people of different faiths, worldviews, and traditions.