Posts Tagged ‘Volume 34 No. 12’

Litigating and legislating against clergy sex abuse rises amidst mounting secular pressure

Church-state issues surrounding clergy sexual abuse are becoming a pressing concern to church bodies, even as they draw up new regulations to punish perpetrators and establish ministries to help victims, according to scholars speaking at a recent symposium on religious freedom in New York, which RW attended. The trend of more legislative attempts to require […]

Christians retain strong edge as classical education diversifies and goes public

Classical education based on studying the “great books” of the pagan and Judeo-Christian traditions is now championed by a growing number of Christian homeschoolers as well as taking on a more public face, according to reports. Once the province of elite private schools, classical education caught on among an unlikely group of Protestants in the […]

Latino Catholics make common cause with evangelicals on pro-life issues while seeing division in their own ranks

Evangelical Christians and Latino Catholics are increasingly cooperating on pro-life issues, though there are emerging divisions among the latter that may complicate this alliance, writes J. D. Long-Garcia in America magazine (September 16). The pro-life alliance between the two groups could be seen in rallies this past summer at the state capitol building in Providence, […]

“Heretical pope” thesis (re)emerges, with dilemmas for conservative Catholics

While the theory that the pope could fall into heresy had been confined to extreme fringe groups during the pontificates of John Paul II and (even more so) Benedict XVI, it is currently gaining new life in conservative Catholic circles, writes Pierre Charles (Brest University) in the traditionalist Catholic quarterly Catholica (Summer). Conservative Catholics attempted […]

Buddhist temples struggle and change as “merit economy” dissolves in North America

Many Buddhist temples in North America have suffered financially because traditional Buddhist financial practices based on the concept of merit have weakened considerably, writes Jeff Wilson of the University of Waterloo in the Journal of Global Buddhism (Vol. 20). In an issue devoted to Buddhism and economics, Wilson looks at changes occurring in the traditional […]


The first large-scale study of clergy working outside of congregations finds that this trend has not changed greatly over the past four decades, although today such clergy tend to be female, live in a city, and have an advanced degree. The study, published in the Review of Religious Research (online in October) and conducted by […]

Catholic monasticism in Africa gains independence while encountering new challenges

As membership in Catholic monasteries shifts away from their foundations in Europe to Africa, these institutions are becoming increasingly independent and more involved in community development while also facing new questions of sustainability, writes Isabelle Jonveaux in the journal Religions (vol. 10). The growth of new foundations for monasteries in Africa and Asia has taken place […]

Japan’s new funeral practices signal social changes and new ways of dealing with death

The switch to nuclear families in urban settings has led to significant changes in funerary practices in contemporary Japan, according to Marianna Zanetta (University of Torino, Italy, and École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris) at this year’s CESNUR Conference in Torino, which RW attended in September. In Japanese traditions, it is important to have relatives […]

French Orthodox parishes following Russian tradition reunite with Moscow Patriarchate

A majority of the clergy and parishes of the Archdiocese of Russian Orthodox Churches in Western Europe, headquartered in Paris, has decided to unite with the Moscow Patriarchate, thus effectively bringing to an end divisions within the Russian Orthodox diaspora that had grown in the decades following the Bolshevik Revolution and the exile of many […]

Findings & Footnotes

◼ The rise of the narrative of persecuted Christians around the world not only encourages American evangelicals to help victims abroad, but is also linked to a process of their seeing themselves as victims, part of a global community under attack, writes Melani McAlister (George Washington University) in an issue of The Review of Faith […]