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Center for Religion & Civic Culture

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Keeping Faith: A CRCC Senior Fellow Finds the Key to Passing Religion Across Generations

Bengtson says that emotional warmth rather than devoutness or discipline appears to be the key factor in families that successfully transmit religious traditions across generations. Allowing their children—particularly adolescents—to venture away from orthodox expressions of belief might seem counterintuitive to parents who want their kids to remain in the fold. Yet Bengtson’s work shows that a home environment that is nurturing but not constricting appears most likely to encourage spiritual roots to grow deep.

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A Different Type of Medicine: Science, Religion, and the Power of Meaning

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The general public and medical professionals have long recognized the positive relationship between religiosity/spirituality and health. While researchers warn that no blanket conclusions should be made about this relationship (i.e., it differs depending on gender, denomination, diagnosis, and other factors),...

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Catching the Spirit: The New Pope, Pentecostalism and the Global South

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Huffington Post Religion published an article by David Briggs on religion in the Global South. The article quoted Donald Miller and cited Global Pentecostalism: The New Face of Christian Social Engagement. Briggs, writer for the  Association of Religion Data Archives,...

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The Faith-Based Initiative: 17 Years of Making Religion an Official Part of Government Seem Normal

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Many have forgotten about the faith-based initiative by now. The once contentious and controversial set of policy initiatives, created by the conservative evangelical movement with the purported goal of encouraging religious organizations to take government funds to do social services,...

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The Pentecostalization of Protestant Christianity

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As a sociologist of religion and a professor at Biola University, I’m immersed in Christian culture. But it took a two-year research project on new movements in Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity for me to realize something interesting: Christianity (or at...

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Finding a Place for Faith in Social Innovation

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Nadia Roumani, Co-Founder and Director of the American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute (AMCLI) , has appeared in an article on eJewish Philanthropy discussing the emergence of faith-based organizations and companies in social innovation and entrepreneurship. An excerpt from the article:...

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AMCLI Announces New Class of Fellows

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The American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute introduced its fifth cohort of fellows on November 1, 2012. Each year, AMCLI selects twenty-four fellows to participate in a yearlong program to support and developing emerging leaders between the ages of 25-40 in...

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CRCC to co-sponsor Financial and Tax Based Seminar for Faith-based and nonprofit organizations

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Nonprofits and faith-based organizations fill a critical gap in the state’s network of facilities that serve those facing life struggles, but these organizations face an increasing number of challenges. In order to strengthen these important organizations, State Controller John Chiang,...

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USC Murray Center recruiting for 2012 Faith Leaders Institute

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The USC Cecil Murray Center is currently recruiting up to 50 faith leaders from four communities to participate in the Faith Leaders Institute, a leadership transformation and capacity building program. Funded by the California Endowment, the program will teach about...

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CRCC to participate in the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion conference

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CRCC will participate in the annual Society for the Scientific Study of Religion conference Nov. 9-11 in Phoenix, Arizona. CRCC Director of Research Richard Flory is the organizer of one session, while Pentecostal and Charismatic Research Initiative grantee Henri Gooren...

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Black Church Barrios: African American Churches Adapt to Latino Neighbors

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CRCC Director of Research Richard Flory and Executive Director of the Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement Mark Whitlock have appeared in an article in Christianity Today discussing the effect of demographic changes on black churches in South Los Angeles....

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Loskota Testifies at L.A. City Human Relations Commission Hearing on Riots

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Brie Loskota testified at a public hearing hosted by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and the Los Angeles City Human Relations Commission. The event, "L.A. Civil Unrest: A Community Blueprint for the Next 20 Years," took place on April 24, 2012 at...

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20th anniversary of LA riots puts Rev. Murray in media spotlight

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Rev. Dr. Cecil "Chip" Murray has appeared in national and local news stories regarding the 20th anniversary of the Los Angeles civil unrest. Twenty years ago this month, over a thousand fires burned in the heart of Los Angeles. The...

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Rev. Dr. Cecil Murray's autobiography launched and available for purchase

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Figueroa Press and CRCC announce the publication of Rev. Dr. Cecil “Chip” Murray’s autobiography, Twice Tested By Fire: A Memoir of Faith and Service. The inspiring 200-page book is currently available on Amazon, and the USC Bookstore. The Guibord Center:...

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The Los Angeles Riots 20 Years Later: An Interview with the Rev. Dr. Cecil 'Chip' Murray

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USC Dean of Religious Life Varun Soni interviewed Rev. Dr. Cecil "Chip" Murray for the Huffington Post about the 20th anniversary of the Los Angeles riots. During the 1992 civil unrest in Los Angeles, Murray became a household name as...

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International Mission Photography Archive receives NEH grants

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USC received $305,000 in grants from National Endowment for the Humanities to catalog, digitize and conduct a workshop on its International Mission Photography Archive, headed up by co-principal investigators Jon Miller, CRCC senior research associate and IMPA director, and Matt...

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Richard Flory talks about churchgoing on podcast

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Why go to church when a recent Barna Group survey found that most churchgoers barely remember any insight from the previous week’s service? CRCC Director of Research Richard Flory talked about that topic and more to the Research on Religion...

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Religious leaders gather at USC for California Faith Action event

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Religious leaders from across the state gathered at USC yesterday to help focus the work of a new civic collaboration called California Faith Action. The event, titled "Interfaith Leadership for the NEXT California," was co-sponsored by CRCC and the Knight...

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Murray Center's partnership with USC small business office featured

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USC News recently featured the USC Small Business Diversity Office and its relationship to small businesses around the University Park, Health Sciences, Marina del Rey and Alhambra campuses. The article also highlighted the small business office's partnership with the Cecil...

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Senior fellows to speak at UCLA's "Looking for Judaism in Unconventional Places" symposium

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CRCC Senior Fellows Bruce Phillips and Diane Winston will speak at "Looking for Judaism in Unconventional Places," a symposium held by the UCLA Center for Jewish Studies on February 12-13. This conference will examine the significance of the transformations for...

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From The Ashes: The 1992 Civil Unrest and the Rise of Social Movement Organizing

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Rev. Cecil "Chip" Murray is among many distinguished speakers at From the Ashes: The 1992 Civil Unrest and the Rise of Social Movement Organizing event on Thursday, April 26th at the USC Davidson Conference Center The all-day event, co-sponsored by...

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Pentecostal conference in Italy accepting proposals

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The University of Padova, Italy is is currently accepting proposals for the conference Pentecostal Politics of Space and Power: A Global Perspective, held at the university from June 7-8, 2012. Pentecostalism emerged on a global scale in the twentieth century...

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CrossCurrents Research Colloquium offers opportunity for scholars

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Want to spend the month of July in New York researching the role of religion in social movements, with access to libraries and research facilities at Columbia University, Union, Auburn, and Jewish Theological Seminaries? The 2012 CrossCurrents Research Colloquium, in...

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CNN features Oklahoma Sharia ban fight led by AMCLI fellow

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Muneer Awad, current American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute fellow, is making news for leading a local Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) group against an Oklahoma voter-approved measure barring state judges from considering Islamic and international law in their decisions. CNN...

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What Does the Demise of the Crystal Cathedral Mean For Our Megachurches?

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Zócalo Public Square is featuring CRCC Director of Research Richard Flory's op-ed on the Crystal Cathedral on its front page today. In the piece, Flory examines what the fall of Robert Schuller's Crystal Cathedral in Orange County means for other...

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Faith and Food Justice: Nourishing Body and Soul

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Want to see interdisciplinary activism at its best? Look at food justice. Seeking to address the inequities in the food system from production to consumption, the movement creates ties together the concerns of environmentalists, the labor movement, animal rights activists,...

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Religion’s Uneasy Place: Religious Engagement vs. Religious Freedom in American Public Affairs and Public Diplomacy

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CRCC Managing Director Brie Loskota delivered the following as her concluding keynote address at the 8th Annual American Studies Network Conference at Northeast Normal University in Changchun, China, in September. Download "Religion's Uneasy Place."(PDF) This paper explores the complicated roles...

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Rev. Cecil Murray speaks on "What Matters to Me and Why"

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What matters to Reverend Cecil "Chip" Murray? History, education, faith, people. But most of all, understanding. Murray, holder of USC's John R. Tansey Chair in Christian Ethics and a senior fellow at the university's Center for Religion and Civic Culure,...

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CRCC heads to the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion conference

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CRCC will be well-represented at the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion conference this weekend Oct. 28-30 in Milwaukee, W.I. CRCC Director of Research Richard Flory is the organizer/convener of three panels. Senior Fellow Vern Bengtson and Donald Miller...

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Interdisciplinary Research Group announces research award opportunities

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CRCC's Interdisciplinary Research Group will be offering opportunities for fellowships and grants for religion-related scholarship at the University of Southern California. IRG is now soliciting proposals for the following awards: Faculty Research Fellowships: Three fellowships of up to $10,000. Funds...

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Lessons from Africa’s September 11th

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This article is one in an occasional series of dispatches from scholars in the Center for Religion and Civic Culture’s global research network. Danny McCain of the University of Jos is the principal investigator of the Nigeria Pentecostal and Charismatic...

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Congregations and Community Project sheds light on Los Angeles neighborhoods

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CRCC, the USC Office of Religious Life, Loyola Marymount University and the Magnolia Place Family Center partnered together for the Congregations and Community Project last month, a project that aimed at understanding the role of churches and religion in the...

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Fine Line between Love and Justice: The mixed responses of Korean churches toward North Korean attacks

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This article is one in an occasional series on the ways in which religion impacts local and international affairs outside of the United States. Note: South Korean President Lee Myung Bak is in Washington this week to discuss trade issues...

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IRG annual seminar takes religion on the move

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CRCC's Interdisciplinary Research Group annual seminar series is going strong with the topic "Religion on the Move: Crossing Borders, Setting Boundaries." The first seminar, held Sept. 7, covered the topic of "Diasporas and Religious Doctrine." IRG seminar co-director Professor Janet...

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CRCC co-sponsors lecture on Pentecostals and Roman Catholics

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In a lecture co-sponsored by CRCC and the Institute for Advanced Catholic Studies, Rev. Tom Rausch, S.J. will discuss the topic, "Pentecostals and Roman Catholics: Past Tentions, New Initiatives" on Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2011 at USC. The reception begins at...

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African American church in L.A. seen facing new challenges

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Our Weekly featured CRCC's report "The Black Church Next: Challenges and Opportunities Facing African American Congregations in 21st Century Los Angeles," by Daniel Walker, CRCC research associate. The report details the struggle of the Black Church to stay vital, which...

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Volunteers needed for the Congregations and Community Project

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CRCC, with Loyola Marymount University and the Magnolia Place Family Center, will be conducting interviews with congregations in Central Los Angeles and is looking for about 100 volunteers to conduct this research. The volunteer commitment requires one training session on...

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KPCC features Flory's comments on Crystal Cathederal's search for $50M 'miracle'

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Richard Flory, CRCC's director of Research, spoke to KPCC radio about the latest developments with the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, CA. The Crystal Cathedral’s board of directors have rejected serious bids from Orange County’s Catholic diocese, a real estate...

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LA Human Relations Commission's Religious Pluralism Public Forum

CRCC Managing Director Brie Loskota moderated a panel at the Religious Pluralism Public Forum, sponsored by the City of Los Angeles Human Relations Commission last Wednesday at the Van Nuys City Hall Chambers. Panelists included: Imam Jihad Turk, Religious Director...

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Brie Loskota moderates LA Human Relations Commission forum

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CRCC Managing Director Brie Loskota moderated a panel at the Religious Pluralism Public Forum, sponsored by the City of Los Angeles Human Relations Commission last Wednesday at the Van Nuys City Hall Chambers. Panelists included: Imam Jihad Turk, Religious Director...

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New Milestone for International Mission Photography Archive

Bibliothèque du Défap in Paris has recently contributed approximately 6,500 pictures to the International Mission Photography Archive (IMPA). These historical images, taken in Madagascar, Cameroon, Lesotho, and Gabon by representatives of the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society (PEMS), bring the total...

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Moving Towards a More Complex View of Gender and Sexuality in Christianity

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The CRCC Interdisciplinary Research Group held its first seminar on Friday, Oct. 8, 2010. This session featured Heather White (New College of Florida) and Sheila Briggs (USC). Lori Meeks writes that the papers revealed "Christian views of gender and sexuality would surprise contemporary Christians."

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Welcome to our new site!

Welcome to the new website of the USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture. We hope that you enjoy the new look and improved access to resources and information. We are also launching “The Wire,” our collective blog that will feature thoughts on current events, project updates, and notes on what we are learning as a research team.

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Exploring Community, Worth and Life on the Slabs

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Slab City, an informal community built on the remains of a Marine base near the Salton Sea, is the location for a new project led by Matt Gainer.

Gainer, research associate and director of the USC Digital Library, will use documentary photography and oral histories to examine how community is maintained in Slab City, a site that has no official status as place, no official status as place, no state supported infrastructure and no private property.

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