religion

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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. 

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.

Islamic Center of Johnson County

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

The Religious Diet

Mar 11, 2013

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?


Good Samaritans Found In A War Zone

Mar 1, 2013

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.

Kansas Army Base Hosts Shariah Class

Oct 30, 2012
Alex Smith / KCUR

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

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.

Drepung Gomang Monks / LGBTQ Youth Activism

Sep 13, 2012
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.

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.

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.

prayinghandspictures.net

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

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.

KCUR

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.  

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.

Inside The New Mormon Temple

Apr 11, 2012
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.

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.

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:

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.

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.

The Struggle Over Teaching Evolution

Feb 15, 2012
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.

Every 19 days, members of Kansas City’s Baha’i religious community gather for a potluck and a traditional service they call a feast. It’s a remarkable diverse mix of races, ages and backgrounds celebrating a 150-year-old gospel of global unity. But the optimistic spirit of many of Kansas City’s Baha’is has been tested. Many have fled for their lives in order to practice their religion.

When religion is part of the news stories of the day, it can be very good - as when people of many faiths work together to provide disaster relief - or very bad, as when religious institutions become embroiled in financial shenanigans or sexual abuse.  In today's pluralistic world, even stories that might never be covered by the religion desk - like foreign policy debates, armed conflicts worldwide, or presidential election campaigns - have undeniably religious angles and implications.

Leawood, KS – Writer Anne Rice is best known for her vampire novels, which she moved away from when she became a faithful Catholic. But she recently renounced her Christianity very publicly, saying that too many Christians are anti-gay, anti-feminist, an anti-science.

Local Methodist Minister Adam Hamilton responded, in an opinion piece in The Washington Post.

Kansas City, MO – Earlier this summer, about 25 Cuban families gathered to honor Father Patrick Tobin, a Catholic Priest who helped them settle in Kansas City almost 50 years ago. As a board member of Catholic Relief Services, Tobin was given the job of helping refugees fleeing the Cuban Revolution. Tobin organized parishes in Kansas City to provide housing, jobs and basic services for the Cubans. Alex Smith spoke with Father Patrick Tobin as well as one of the Cubans who arrived in the early 60s, Maria Rovarosa.

Kansas City, MO – Muslims began fasting from dawn to dusk earlier this month when a new crescent moon signaled the start of Ramadan, Islam's holiest month. The month-long holiday commemorates the time 1500 years ago that Muslims believe the first verses of the Koran were revealed to the Prophet Mohammed. The faithful try to be especially pious this month and refrain from food, drink, smoking and sex - all the sensual pleasures - during daylight.

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