Articles on Religion

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Some Christians interpret Biblical teachings to say that women are essentially equal to men, but should be submissive to male leaders in the church and home. Shutterstock

Explainer: why some churches teach that women are ‘separate but equal’

Complementarianism is the view – held by some Australian churches – that men and women have separate and divinely ordained roles: men are 'spiritual leaders' while women are 'helpmeets'.
The 2007 midwinter solstice illumination of the main altar tabernacle of Old Mission San Juan Bautista, California. Rubén G. Mendoza/Ancient Editions

A sacred light in the darkness: Winter solstice illuminations at Spanish missions

At many Spanish missions in the US and Latin America, the rising sun illuminates the altar on the winter solstice or other symbolic days. To the faithful, these events meant that Christ was with them.
Why do we celebrate the birth of Jesus on 25 December? Adoration of the shepherds (1622) by Gerard van Honthorst/WIkimedia Commons

How did we come to celebrate Christmas?

Before Christmas became child-centred, Father Christmas was the personification of a mid-winter feast of merrymaking for adults – and he brought no presents.
Jennie A. Brownscombe’s ‘The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth’ (1914). Wikimedia Commons

The two men who almost derailed New England’s first colonies

The Pilgrims were thankful for finally being able to vanquish Thomas Morton and Ferdinando Gorges, who spent years trying to undermine the legal basis for settlements in Massachusetts and beyond.

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