- CommentaryAmerican Theocracy Is Bad for Everyone–Including White Christian NationalistsAs we marked the 246th anniversary of our country’s independence from a despotic regime that fused church and state power, the staff of the USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture gathered …Topics: Christians and Christianity, Gender and Sexuality, Political Attitudes and Values, Voting and Elections
- ReportThirty Years Later: Remembering LA’s 1992 Civil Unrest and Reimagining Social ActionLike the tectonic fault lines that can suddenly release pent-up geological pressures, shaking the literal bedrock of Southern California, the cultural fault lines between groups with unequal political and economic power periodically …Topics:
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- CommentaryWhy They Cross the Mediterranean: Italy’s ‘Guardian Angel of Refugees’ in Conversation with a Survivor of the 2013 Lampedusa ShipwreckFor nearly 20 years, Eritrean Catholic Priest Mussie Zerai has fielded thousands of distress calls from refugees and migrants on shipwrecked vessels in the Mediterranean Sea. “I’ve heard the voices. I’ve heard …Topics: Catholics and Catholicism, Engaged Spirituality, Europe, Immigration, Spiritual Exemplars, Sub-Saharan Africa
- VideoFather Mussie Zerai: The Migrant Priest
- VideoPassing on the Kindness: A Conversation on Faith and Social Entrepreneurship
- AnnouncementRev. Dr. Cecil L. “Chip” Murray Retires from University of Southern CaliforniaThe Rev. Dr. Cecil L. “Chip” Murray announced his retirement from his second career—as Tansey Professor of Christian Ethics and chair of the Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement—at the University of …Topics: CMCCE,
- ArticleCaroline Bundy: Finding Grace for Homeless Youth and LGBTQ+ in AlabamaThis article was originally published by Alabama Political Reporter, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. Alabama’s governor recently signed a pair of bills—one criminalizing gender-affirming care for transgender youth and …Topics: Christians and Christianity, Economic Inequality, Engaged Spirituality, Gender and Sexuality, Spiritual Exemplars
- ArticleTeresa Forcades: A Catholic Nun who Complicates the Abortion ConversationThis article was originally published by The Independent, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. It’s time to reimagine the debate around abortion. We are trapped in the tyranny of …Topics: Catholics and Catholicism, Engaged Spirituality, Gender and Sexuality, Healthcare, Nuns and Women Religious, Public Health, Spiritual Exemplars
- ArticleZannah Mustapha: Teaching Boko Haram’s kidsThis article was originally published in The Christian Science Monitor, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. MAIDUGURI, NIGERIA — One morning in May, Zina Mustapha stood before her 20 …Topics: Education, Engaged Spirituality, Muslims and Islam, Spiritual Exemplars, Violence
- CRCC in the NewsRNS: Gajaweera on Buddhism and Sri Lanka’s Recent Protest MovementProtests that led to Sri Lanka’s President Gotabaya Rajapaksa resignation have raised questions about the role of Buddhism in the country’s politics. Religion News Service interviewed CRCC’s Nalika Gajaweera about the Buddhist …Topics: Asia, Buddhists and Buddhism, Protests and Uprisings, Religious Leadership
- ArticleFouzia Azizi: Refugee to Refugee, Afghan Resettlement Worker Draws from Faith and ExperienceThis article was originally published by Religion News Service, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. CONCORD, Calif. (RNS) — Sayed Hashmi, an Afghan citizen, did not want to leave his …Topics: Engaged Spirituality, Immigration, Muslims and Islam, Spiritual Exemplars
“It is reasonably easy to be an armchair critic of religion. There are ample examples of religious leaders who compromise the values of their tradition, and the fundamentalists of every religion are inevitably out of step with the latest findings of modern science.
“But the storyline about religion gets more complicated when one examines religious people in the trenches, serving the poor and disenfranchised of their societies.”
– Donald E. Miller
A Pragmatist’s View of Religion
CRCC can connect you with one of our many expert religious researchers and writers. Contact us, and we’ll help you find the right person for your subject.
- Richard FloryExecutive DirectorRichard Flory is a sociologist whose work focuses on religion and urban life, religious and cultural change, and youth and young adults.
- Nalika GajaweeraResearch AssociateNalika Gajaweera is a cultural anthropologist specialized in Buddhism, transnationalism and ethics, with an area expertise in South Asia.
- Najuma Smith-PollardAssistant Director of Community and Public EngagementRev. Najuma Smith-Pollard combines her experience as a pastor and expertise as a community leader to train Murray Center Fellows.
- Donald E. MillerDirector of Strategic InitiativesDonald Miller focuses on global religious trends, genocides of the 20th century, and the role of religious NGOs in addressing issues of moral concern.
- Hebah FarragAssistant Director of ResearchHebah Farrag manages the center’s research and evaluation projects while engaging in research focused on religion, social change and new spiritualties.
- Nick StreetSenior WriterNick Street is a journalist covering religious change and innovation, Buddhism, Pentecostalism and LGBT issues.
- Tarra McNallyAssistant Director of EvaluationTarra McNally is an anthropologist specializing in evaluation and global health.
- Soraya AhyaudinAMCLI Director and Assistant Director, Learning Design and ProgramsSoraya Ahyaudin directs the American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute at the USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture.
- Megan SweasEditor and Director of CommunicationsMegan Sweas is a journalist specializing in social and economic justice issues and world religions.