Posts Tagged ‘Volume 38 No. 5’

Researchers find enduring missionary effect in developing nations

The role of missionaries has long been recognized as consequential, but can the missionary effect endure long after the missions have closed and been replaced by indigenous churches and leaders? That was the question that several scholars examined at the mid-March conference of the Association for the Study of Religion, Economics, and Culture, which RW […]

With rise of AI, concerns about ritual automation grow in Hinduism, Buddhism

Just as the rapid rise of artificial intelligence has raised new concerns as well as utopian hopes about a post-human future in work, religious professionals are debating the real prospects of “spiritual robots” replacing worshippers’ performance of traditional rituals, writes anthropologist Holly Walters in the online magazine The Conversation (March 13). The concern about what […]

Asbury revival’s draw based on psychological healing?

While the revival meetings based at evangelical Asbury College in Kentucky ended by late February, their appeal to a large swath of evangelical young people carried an emphasis on psychological healing that says a lot about Generation Z religion in the near future. Writing in First Things magazine (March 3), Biola University professor Kent Dunnington […]

Conservative churches encounter extremist elements in their ranks

Recent controversy within the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS) over the influence of a small far-right contingent within its ranks suggests that conservative congregations and denominations may face pressures from such extremist elements as well as from the more liberal wings of church and society. The conflict came into full view on Ash Wednesday, when the […]


A new poll finds that the share of Americans who say patriotism and religion are “very important” to them has fallen sharply, as has the share who value involvement in their community, hard work, and having children. While in 1998, 70 percent of respondents deemed patriotism to be very important, that proportion is now 38 […]

Ukraine’s religious restrictions more than wartime emergency measure?

According to observers speaking at a recent online seminar, Ukraine is on a “very slippery slope” in violating religious freedom since it introduced sanctions and other restrictions last year against the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC), Moscow Patriarchate. The online symposium, organized by the Greek Order of Saint Andrew and attended by RW, took place shortly […]

Populism, religion, and the rise of the post-religious right in France

While previous research has found a “hijacking of religion” by populist parties in Europe, and the use of Christianity—along with secular principles—as an identity marker against Islam, this has not prevented the French Rassemblement National (National Rally, RN) from “becoming increasingly secularist in its policies, personnel and electorate,” according to Tobias Cramer (University of Oxford) […]

Pay-for-service Jewish innovation in Israel, with a little help from the U.S.

American-style Jewish innovations that draw on business and consumer models are finding some resonance in Israel, especially in secular Tel Aviv, according to a study by Einat Libel-Hass and Adam S. Ferziger. In an article appearing in the current issue of the journal Modern Judaism, the authors study prominent Reform and Conservative synagogues in Tel […]

Buddhist monks in post-coup Myanmar face division while youth resistance turns secular

Myanmar’s Buddhist monks and nuns have mostly stayed on the sidelines since the February 2021 coup, as the resistance pursues a secular agenda that includes violent action, a new International Crisis Group report, A Silent Sangha? Buddhist Monks in Post-coup Myanmar (March 10), finds. This contrasts with the significant role played by monks in previous […]

Findings & Footnotes

■  The edited collection, An Epidemic among My People (Temple University Press, $39.95), suggests that Covid-19 has a wider impact on religion and society than many might expect. The book, edited by political scientists Paul Djupe and Amanda Friesen, marshals a significant amount of data that documents religious behavior before and after the peak years […]