Central Standard
2:02 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Changing Trends In Teaching About Difference

These students act out and witness scenes in KU's Tunnel of Oppression, a program that asks college students to confront uncomfortable social dynamics.
Credit KU / Creative Commons

For the past few decades, American communities have been trying to foster this thing called "multiculturalism." As we continue to debate notions of privilege and perception, how is this experiment going? Are we more empathetic than we used to be? Plus, having "the talk"... about race.


Read more
Central Standard
3:03 pm
Thu March 27, 2014

The Role Of Churches And Social Clubs In African-American Communities

Church communities fostered the rise of African-American leaders.
Credit Courtesy / Black Archives of Mid-America

In an age before the internet—and in an environment that in some ways promoted isolation and disconnection—African-Americans in Kansas City in the early 20th century still found ways to find connection and community.

Churches and social clubs have been called the “glue” that held the black community together, alongside families and schools, and a new exhibit at the Black Archives of Mid-America chronicles some of that important history.


  • Michael Sweeney, collection librarian for the Black Archives of Mid-America
Read more
Up to Date
10:43 am
Wed March 26, 2014

The Common Objects Among Different Religions

Objects such as incense are sacred in a variety of religions but for different reasons.
Credit Anne Roberts / Flickr-CC

It’s no secret that people of different religions often clash over their differences. But when you look closer, the similarities jump out, especially when it comes to significant objects. 

On Wednesday's Up to Date, our Religion Roundtable takes a look at why objects such as stones, crosses, bread, drums and incense have places of prominence in spiritual observance and how their function differs in each religion.


Read more
Up to Date
11:51 am
Thu February 27, 2014

What It's Like To Be A Religious Minority In America

Steve Kraske examines America's religious melting pot on Thursday's Up to Date.
Credit 917press / Flickr-CC

Many politicians declare the United States to be a Christian nation-- but it’s not, even though the majority of the population is part of some stream of Christianity. The Founding Fathers, while using religion as a basis for some of their decisions, were very clear about making this a country with no official religion.

Read more
Up to Date
11:22 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Contentious Views Dominate Female Bishop's Tenure

Katharine Jefferts Schori is Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church.
Credit Ozma1981 / Wikimedia Commons

The Episcopal Church’s first female presiding bishop has experienced her share of strong reactions to her progressive views on gay marriage, immigration and more.

In the first part of Tuesday's Up to Date, Katharine Jefferts Schori joins us to talk about her positions on these issues. We also talk about what’s next for the 110 church dioceses she oversees.


Read more
9:34 am
Thu February 13, 2014

Missouri House Gives First-Round Approval To 'Health Care Conscience' Bill

Mo. Capitol
Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Wed February 12, 2014 8:51 pm

Medical personnel who wish to opt out of participating in procedures that violate their religious or personal beliefs are one step closer to being allowed to do so legally in Missouri.

Read more
Central Standard
4:00 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

A Fellowship Of The Questioning And Unbelievers - Oasis

There is a growing trend of atheists who also recognize the importance and impact of the communal nature of faith based worship. As a result Sunday Assemblies have popped up throughout the United States. Now their popularity is spurring others to offer even different options, with even less of a focus on communal worship. Oasis is one such group that will begin meeting in April.

Read more
Kansas Statehouse
8:13 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Committee To Debate Kansas Religious Freedom Bill

A committee in the Kansas Legislature could vote this week on a controversial religious freedom bill. It says businesses, individuals and other groups with strong religious beliefs can't be forced to recognize same-sex marriage and provide employment or other services to same-sex couples.

Michael Schuttloffel is with the Kansas Catholic Conference. He uses the example of a photographer asked to photograph a same-sex wedding ceremony.

Read more
Central Standard
2:30 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

New Documentary Claims Missionaries Are Exporting Anti-Homosexual Values To Africa

Credit Roger Ross Williams / God Loves Uganda

A new film, now playing in Kansas City, makes a startling case – that American evangelicals, in the name of doing mission work, have triggered something in Africa that’s very different from prayer and worship and medical help for the needy. Instead, the film suggests, they’ve influenced governments and societies to discriminate against gay and lesbian people … or worse.

Read more
Central Standard
6:31 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Why Wicca Is A Misunderstood Religion

Wiccans celebrating the summer solstice
Credit Ryan Schuessler / KCUR

Friday, June 21 will be the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. And for one religious group it's a time to celebrate the Oak King falling to the Holly King.

We take a look at the often misunderstood Wiccan religion. Recently they’ve made inroads into popular acceptance, but practitioners still say there's more to be done.  Owen Davies, author of the book America Bewitched,  joins two local Wiccan practitioners, "J" and "Thorgo" to discuss the Wiccan faith locally and internationally.

Read more
Up to Date
6:00 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Looking At The Larger Context of MLK's 'Mountaintop'

Martin Luther King, Jr., speaks at a 1962 rally.
Credit New York World-Telegram and the Sun Newspaper Photograph Collection

Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "Mountaintop" speech from Memphis is famous for its ending and because he was assassinated the next day. However, much of the speech doesn't receive a lot of attention today. 
Read more
KC Currents
5:05 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Rez Downtown Builds Urban Church Community

Rez Downtown welcomes about 900 congregants each weekend.
Credit Resurrection Downtown

The renaissance of downtown that has happened in recent years has attracted more than restaurants and real estate developers. As more and more people have come to live, work and hang out downtown, churches have also had their eyes on the area.

Read more
KC Currents
11:54 am
Mon May 20, 2013

Overland Park Mosque Plans Big Expansion

Image of plans for new Johnson County mosque
Islamic Center of Johnson County

Kansas is home to thousands of Muslims, but just a handful of mosques.

Read more
Central Standard
12:00 am
Mon March 11, 2013

The Religious Diet

As we find ourselves in the midst of Lent and with Passover on the horizon, the idea of food and the role it plays in various religions is on many people's minds. Why do Catholics not eat meat on Fridays, why do Jews not let their bread rise and why do members of Islam have permanent restrictions on what they can eat?

Read more
Up to Date
6:00 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

Good Samaritans Found In A War Zone

The Gospel of Rutba: War, Peace, and the Good Samaritan Story in Iraq

When three Americans found themselves caught up in the 2003 invasion of Iraq, they found sanctuary with the local Muslim community of Rutba, which sheltered them, despite their religious differences.

Read more
KC Currents
1:32 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Kansas Army Base Hosts Shariah Class

Dr. Raj Bhala teaching officers at Fort Leavenworth.
Alex Smith KCUR

In Kansas, the Islamic code of laws called Shariah has drawn a lot of suspicion and debate during the past year.

Read more
KC Currents
1:31 pm
Mon October 15, 2012

Atheists Shed Stereotypes

Dr. Darrell Ray leads workshop at atheist convention.
Alex Smith

In Kansas and Missouri, it’s now common for a lot of to politicians to not just proclaim their faith, but to openly push a pro-religious agenda.

Read more
Central Standard
9:11 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Drepung Gomang Monks / LGBTQ Youth Activism

flickr / mr.gibbs

On Thursday’s Central Standard, special guest host Brian Ellison is joined by a group of Tibetan monks currently touring the city. We'll talk about their simplistic, yet powerful values. Plus, hear some chants for peace and healing.

Then, later in the hour, we’ll talk with an ambitious group of young people about LGBTQ activism in schools and in the community.

Read more
Up To Date
12:16 am
Fri August 31, 2012

Religion Roundtable: Weddings

Hindu ceremony
Hakim Sons Films

Whether as participant or observer, sooner or later we all go to a wedding.  And whether under a mandap or chuppah, at the altar or in the parsonage, ceremonies in any faith are marked by one common denominator: a couple embarking on a life together.

Read more
KC Currents
12:19 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

Kansas City Sikhs Seek Tolerance

Sikhs hold a vigil in Shawnee Mission Park.
Alex Smith KCUR

While the Wisconsin shooting that took place on August 5th is the most dramatic attack on Sikhs in recent memory, members of the faith often experience harassment and discrimination.

Read more
Up to Date
9:48 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Missouri Amendment 2: 'Right To Pray' Or Redundant Rights?

On Tuesday, Missouri citizens will vote on Amendment 2, the so-called “right to pray” ballot measure

Read more
11:16 am
Mon July 2, 2012

KC Catholics Caught Between Vatican And Nuns

Catholics gathered to support nuns at Mill Valley Park on the Country Club Plaza.
Alex Smith KCUR

In mid-April, the Vatican issued strong criticism of its largest organization for American Catholic nuns, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.

Read more
10:18 am
Tue June 19, 2012

Local Presbyterian Pastor Becomes Advocate For Gay Rights


Probably the most volatile fault line in America’s shifting opinion on gay rights is in churches. Both those who support gay rights and those who don’t claim that their beliefs are supported by their church’s teachings.  

Read more
10:26 am
Mon April 16, 2012

Interpreting Shariah Law Across The Centuries

promo image of Mecca

Sadakat Kadri is an English barrister, a Muslim by birth and a historian. His first book, The Trial, was an extensive survey of the Western criminal judicial system, detailing more than 4,000 years of courtroom antics.

Read more
Central Standard
8:00 am
Wed April 11, 2012

Inside The New Mormon Temple

Our guest Jeremiah Morgan, President of the Liberty Stake of the Church of Latter Day Saints
Andrea Silenzi KCUR

On this Wednesday's Central Standard, learn what the erection of the new Mormon temple means for area Mormons, and join us for a virtual tour.

Read more
10:10 am
Mon April 9, 2012

'When God Talks Back' To The Evangelical Community

T.M. Luhrmann's book When God Talks Back examines how evangelicals perceive and relate to God.

Originally published on Mon April 9, 2012 11:09 am

While attending services and small group meetings at The Vineyard, an evangelical church with 600 branches across the country, anthropologist T.M. Luhrmann noticed that several members of the congregation said God had repeatedly spoken to them and that they had heard what God wanted them to do.

In When God Talks Back, which is based on an anthropological study she did at The Vineyard, Luhrmann examines the personal relationships people developed with God and explores how those relationships were cemented through the practice of prayer.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:43 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Assailing 'Disobedience,' Pope Says Women Will Not Be Ordained

Pope Benedict XVI waves as he leaves at the end of the Chrismal mass in the morning of Holy Thursday on Thursday.
Vicenzo Pinto AFP/Getty Images

In a Mass today at St. Peter's Basilica, Pope Benedict XVI delivered a scathing homily that reiterated the Catholic Church's ban on female priests.

He also criticized a group of priests who have called on their colleagues to ignore Rome. NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty filed this report for our Newscast unit:

Read more
Up to Date
5:00 pm
Mon March 12, 2012

Philosopher Alain de Botton On Religion For Atheists

Philosopher Alain de Botton says it’s time for those who believe in religion and those who don’t to stop denigrating each other and find common ground on art, community and morality.

Read more
KC Currents
12:55 pm
Tue February 21, 2012

Midwest Muslims Work To Change Anti-Shariah Movement

Islamic Circle Of North America

In the last year, a movement to limit or outlaw Shariah, or Islamic Law, has been gaining momentum in the U.S.

Read more
Up To Date
8:05 am
Wed February 15, 2012

The Struggle Over Teaching Evolution

Oxford University Press

From the Scopes trial of the 1920s to intelligent design today,  teaching evolution remains a most divisive issue in America.   Across the battlegrounds of pulpits, classrooms and courtrooms, opposing forces have struggled with what the curriculum should include.

Read more