The 2007 midwinter solstice illumination of the main altar tabernacle of Old Mission San Juan Bautista, California.
Rubén G. Mendoza/Ancient Editions
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.
'Ouija board' via www.shutterstock.com
The Oujia board's origins were anything but evil. It emerged, in part, out of a longing to communicate with loved ones who had died during the Civil War.
Mother Theresa in 1991.
Mother Teresa will become a saint on Sunday, on the basis of two miracles of healing. But let's not remove our thinking caps and go all medieval: we should be wary of uncritical endorsement of claims to the miraculous.
Some, but not all, of Kenya’s churches are opposed to the formal recognition of atheists.
The furore over atheism in Kenya comes at a time of slow but steady growth in the number of people unaffiliated to any religion, thanks to religious discontent and access to scientific knowledge.
Giles Fraser thinks that 'Brexit recycles the defiant spirit of the Reformation'. How wrong can he be?
Preaching to the converted.
Pope Francis' mercy mission to a migrant camp in Lesbos is another effort to rescue the tarnished and failing brand of Catholicism.
Two worlds? Minaret in Brick Lane, East London.
An 'us and them' narrative pervades reporting about British Muslim attitudes, but there remains lack of understanding about what the separation of the church and state really means.
After more than a millenium, Pope Francis I will meet the head of the Russian Orthodox Church. They will have plenty to talk about.
Pope Francis writes that the church must be a ‘field hospital’ for the souls of the world.
Pope Francis' new book provides an insight into the theology and life experiences underpinning his unorthodox approach to the papacy. Does his rhetoric conceal Church doctrine as hardline as ever?
John Dryden by John Michael Wright, 1668.
Many literary greats have been religious outsiders, and reading them we can relate to our times. This is particularly the case with Dryden.
The requirement for marriage banns was introduced 800 years ago (almost to the day). Now there's talk of scrapping them.
The Hunger Games heroine Katniss Everdeen represents the strength of living the Beatitudes against injustice.
The Hunger Games movie franchise has ended. What can we learn from Katniss Everdeen about living a just life? This article contains spoilers for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part II.
Jesuit astronomers with Chinese scholars in the 18th century.
Les cahiers de Science et Vie October 2009
As a Jesuit, Pope Francis is part of a long tradition of religious men of science. Will his leadership influence the Catholic Church's stance on contemporary scientific issues?
Obama and Pope Francis at the White House, September 23 2015.
A pope will address the US Congress for the first time this week, but Catholicism and American politics have long been intermingled.
We cannot attribute a particular characteristic, whether positive or negative, to religion as religion does not have the ability to act.
When public policy is being shaped, it is incumbent upon public figures to be better versed in discussions surrounding religion.
Among certain minority religious communities, there’s a focus on homegrown or locally grown food.
'Hands' via www.shutterstock.com
Yes, environmental racism is still a problem, but recent research shows that minority groups care about protecting the environment because of the positive experiences they've had.
Call me old-fashioned if you like, but I’ve always found it a bit difficult to take men who go to work wearing silk dresses, lots of jewellery, and improbably large hats terribly seriously. Plenty of people…
Burning crosses in Lewes.
Gareth Fuller/PA Archive
Remember, remember! The fifth of November Gunpowder, treason and plot. I see no reason Why the gunpowder treason Should ever be forgot! Versions of this rhyme have been chanted in the UK for centuries…
The Extraordinary Synod on the Family, convened by Pope Francis in Rome from October 5 to 19, was intended to open up an honest and wide-ranging debate about the Catholic Church’s teaching and pastoral…
They are listening but whose side are they on?
An extraordinary two weeks in Rome ended Saturday with a standing ovation. Pope Francis had invited 191 bishops and clergy to the Synod on the family to speak their minds on issues such as divorce, premarital…