religion

Jesse Hardman

WWNO's Listening Post project asks questions about local news in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast and reports back on the community's response. This week the Listening Post atones for the excess of Mardi Gras by asking people what they plan to give up for Lent. 

If you’re religious and a Catholic, you might observe the 40 days of Lent, which starts the day after Mardi Gras. Gregory Aymond is Archbishop of New Orleans. He's seen his fair share of bleary-eyed Ash Wednesday service attendees. 

Laine Kaplan-Levenson

The Episcopal Church of Louisiana spent the past year making plans for a new ministry, aiming to address its history of racism, as well as other forms of racism in society.

Last week, the Washington, D.C.-based leader of the Episcopal Church came to New Orleans for a special service. At Christ Church Cathedral, the oldest Episcopal congregation in New Orleans, worshippers committed to racial healing and racial justice. 

Laine Kaplan-Levenson

The 195 year-old First Presbyterian Church in Broadmoor is growing. It's in no small part thanks to a new pastor, who is reaching out to new communities and luring more people with special events. Like a square dance. With red beans... and beer... in a church? 

In Germany, the past few weeks have been marked by an intense debate over religious liberties.

Today, German Chancellor Angela Merkel jumped into the fray saying her administration would work to protect religious circumcision.

"It is absolutely clear to the federal government that we want Jewish, we want Muslim religious life in Germany. Circumcisions carried out in a responsible way must not be subject to prosecution in this country," Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert told reporters.

With a vote Tuesday evening by its House of Deputies, the Episcopal Church became the largest U.S. denomination so far "to officially sanction same-sex relationships," as CNN's Belief blog writes.

From the America Abroad series: The Middle East is largely Muslim but it’s also the birthplace of Christianity, Judaism, and many other religions. Many non-Muslims have left in recent decades, leaving relatively small populations of non-Muslims and Muslim minority sects.

Now, the rise of Islamist political parties in the Mideast raises questions about the rights and protections such minorities can expect or whether they can expect them at all.

Go here for more information on this series.

More than 150 evangelical leaders, from across the political spectrum, have come together to call for immigration reform. Host Michel Martin looks at the crusade for reform with Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, and Rev. Samuel Rodriguez of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference.

New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary

The Southern Baptist Convention will be under the leadership of its first African-American president. The country’s largest Protestant denomination is hoping to diminish its troubling racist past.

Heather Pendergraft / Southern Baptist Convention

The pastor of the Franklin Avenue Baptist Church is poised this week to become the first African-American president of the Southern Baptist Convention. His career as a church pastor was not something he imagined as a child.