Depending on your point of view, religion is the source of values like compassion and social justice that are essential to the harmonious co-existence of diverse groups in any given society. Or it provides the rationalization for intolerance and injustice toward the “other,” which is the root of conflict and suffering. Reality, of course, is much more complicated than either perspective.
In any case, religious beliefs—and beliefs about religion—inevitably shape social values and political power, in both the secular societies of the global North and the deeply religious cultures of the global South. Explore the relationship between religion and a variety of social and political issues, from economic inequality to immigration.
Photo Credit: Franco Folini
- ArticleSwami Agnivesh: One of His Final Interviews in Caravan MagazineThis interview was originally published in The Caravan, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. It has been edited and condensed. *** On 11 September, Agnivesh, a swami in the Arya …Topics: Asia, Engaged Spirituality, Government and Religion, Hindus and Hinduism, Religious Extremism, Religious Leadership, Spiritual Exemplars
- ArticleMarie-Stella Kouak: The Togolese Nun Caring for AIDS Patients Amid COVID-19This article was originally published in The Guardian, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. Dapaong is a buzzing, multi-religious city, 13 miles south of Togo’s border with Burkina Faso and …Topics: Catholics and Catholicism, COVID, Engaged Spirituality, Healthcare, Nuns and Women Religious, Spiritual Exemplars, Sub-Saharan Africa
- CommentaryFatal Intersections of Black Women and the Law: The Case of Breonna TaylorThis article was originally published by the Canopy Forum on the Interactions of Law & Religion. I live in Los Angeles, California, near what seems to me to be one of the …Topics: CMCCE, Criminal Justice, Race and Culture, Violence
- ArticleFar from Being Anti-Religious, Faith and Spirituality Run Deep in Black Lives MatterThis article was originally published on The Conversation, and was written with Ann Gleig. Black Lives Matters (BLM) has been portrayed by its detractors as many things: Marxist, radical, anti-American. Added to …Topics: Creativity and Innovation, Engaged Spirituality, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture
- ArticleIndira Ranamagar: Nepalese Women in Prison Turn to AmaThis article was originally published in Indian Country Today, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. Our aunties are the same all over the world. They are the “go to” women …Topics: Asia, Criminal Justice, Economic Inequality, Engaged Spirituality, Gender, Spiritual Exemplars
- VideoSocial Justice and Thriving Congregations
- ArticleJulie Coyne: Creating A Community of Care in Highland GuatemalaOn any given afternoon, for the last 22 years, Julie Coyne has waited eagerly at the doorway to Education and Hope, green eyes twinkling. Children emerge from the surrounding streets dressed in …Topics: Catholics and Catholicism, Economic Inequality, Education, Engaged Spirituality, Immigration, Latin America, Spiritual Exemplars, weforum
- ArticleMasue Katayama: Changing Nursing Care Industry in Japan with KindnessThis article was originally published in Religion News Service, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. YOKOHAMA, Japan (RNS) — In what used to be an elementary school in …Topics: Asia, Catholics and Catholicism, Engaged Spirituality, Healthcare, Spiritual Exemplars
- EventJohn Lewis: Good TroubleInspired by the legacy and work of the late John Lewis, Najuma Smith-Pollard moderates a discussion with Umar Hakim-Dey of ILM Foundation and Salam Al-Marayati of Muslim Public Affairs Council about racial …Topics: Race and Culture
- CRCC in the NewsKCRW: Ferrag on the Role of Spirituality and Prayer in the Black Lives Matter MovementIs Black Lives Matter a spiritual movement? In KCRW’s weekly podcast, Life Examined, Jonathan Bastian talked with Melina Abdullah, co-founder of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles and Professor of Pan-African Studies at …Topics: Engaged Spirituality, Protests and Uprisings, Race and Culture
- ArticleChao-hwei Shih: Buddhist Nun Leads Asia’s Fight for Gay MarriageThis article was originally published in Harvard Divinity Bulletin, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. BUDDHIST MASTER THE VENERABLE Chao-hwei Shih beamed at two 30-year-old brides kneeling before her …Topics: Asia, Buddhists and Buddhism, Engaged Spirituality, Gender, LGBT Issues, Religious Leadership, Spiritual Exemplars
- ArticleRNS: In Togo, a Catholic nun fights COVID-19 for the sake of her AIDS patientsThis article was originally published in Religion News Service, with the support of CRCC’s global project on engaged spirituality. (RNS) — “Here, people won’t die from COVID-19 but mostly from its consequences,” said Sister …Topics: Catholics and Catholicism, Christians and Christianity, COVID, Engaged Spirituality, Healthcare, Nuns and Women Religious, Spiritual Exemplars, Sub-Saharan Africa
“It is, finally, not the external forms of religion that matter so much; they are cultural products, vessels (potential conduits) of the holy, not to be confused with the divine (which would be idolatry). What is important is the quality of life that results from one’s concourse with the God beyond gods.”
—Donald E. Miller
“The Future of Liberal Christianity”
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- Sumaya AbubakerProject ManagerSumaya Abubaker manages leadership and civic engagement programming for minority faith communities.
- Brad ChristersonContributing FellowBrad Christenson is a sociologist who has written extensively in the areas of religion, race, ethnicity, and globalization.
- 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.
- Richard FlorySenior Director of Research and EvaluationRichard Flory is a sociologist whose work focuses on religion and urban life, religious and cultural change, and youth and young adults.
- Rev. Frank Jackson, Jr.Contributing FellowRev. Frank Jackson, Jr. couples his experience in business and investment with his passion for community development.
- Andrew JohnsonPast FellowAndrew Johnson is a sociologist who studies religion on the margins of society, with specific interests in religious practice inside of prison, Latin American Pentecostalism and religion in the city.
- Brie LoskotaExecutive DirectorBrie Loskota researches how religions change and make change in the world, and works to build the capacity of religious communities around the globe.
- Juan MartínezPast FellowJuan Martinez studies the history of Latino Protestantism, Latino Protestant identity and transnational mission among U.S. Latinos.
- Tarra McNallyAssistant Director of EvaluationTarra McNally is an anthropologist specializing in evaluation and global health.
- 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.
- Jon MillerSenior Research AssociateJon Miller is a comparative sociologist and director of the international mission photography archive.
- Arpi MillerContributing FellowArpi Miller is a sociologist who studies secular and faith-based immigrant advocacy and accompaniment.
- Cecil L. MurrayUniversity FellowRev. Cecil Murray works to ensure that the legacy of African American Church leaders pass on their years of experience to the next generation.
- John B. OrrCo-founder & Past FellowJohn B. Orr has worked extensively in the fields of religion, education and politics.
- Joe PalaciosContributing FellowJoe Palacios, a sociologist and Catholic priest, studies religion, politics and social justice in Latin America and among immigrants in the United States.