Oak Grove Acapella Singers, a Gospel group of Chester County, Tennessee, being recorded while singing in the office of the preacher at the Oak Grove Church of Christ. Tennessee State Library and Archives

When gospel sermons came on the phonograph

As the African-American Music Appreciation Month comes to a close, a scholar discusses the role of early preachers in shaping gospel music.
Women are seen inside the Iranian parliament during the June 7 attack in central Tehran. Reuters Photographer

What is the Shia-Sunni divide?

The strike in Iran once again exposes the centuries'-old sectarian Shia-Sunni divide. What is at the heart of this schism?
What is different about hookup culture on Catholic campuses? Boy girl image via www.shutterstock.com

Does hookup culture differ on Catholic campuses?

As Catholicism teaches abstinence before marriage, there is a common perception that Catholic schools would be places without hookup culture. Does faith make a difference?
A file photo of a girl picking up a cupcake as she breaks fast at King Fahad Mosque in Los Angeles, California during Ramadan. Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

Why Ramadan is called Ramadan: 6 questions answered

There are many myths around Ramadan. A scholar explains the religious observance and its spiritual significance.
A statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee is removed on Friday, May 19, 2017, from Lee Circle in New Orleans. AP Photo/Scott Threlkeld

Why taking down Confederate memorials is only a first step

Monuments to the Confederacy in New Orleans and many other cities are problematic. But a mere erasure will not address the issues around racism and racial inequality.
President Donald Trump delivers a speech to the Arab Islamic American Summit on Sunday, May 21, 2017, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. AP Photo/Evan Vucci

What Trump missed in his address on tolerance - American Muslims

Trump avoided many of the missteps his critics feared, but he failed to acknowledge the presence of America's large Muslim population and its contribution to American society.
Stained glass window depicting a heretic in the Cathedral of Saint Rumbold in Mechelen, Belgium. Heretic image via www.shutterstock.com

Blasphemy isn’t just a problem in the Muslim world

A recent case of comedian Stephen Fry being accused of blasphemy is a reminder that blasphemy laws are not unique to the Muslim world.
Syrian Christians and Muslims offer prayers for nuns held by rebels, at the Greek Orthodox Mariamiya Church in Damascus, Syria, in 2013. AP Photo

Syria’s forgotten pluralism and why it matters today

For many centuries, Syrian society has included people of many faiths – Sunni and Shi'i Muslims, Christians and Druze. This past is important to know to understand the present.
Jehovah’s Witnesses pray during a regional congress of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Minsk, Belarus in 2015. Vasily Fedosenko/Reuters

Why Russia is afraid of Jehovah’s Witnesses

There are over eight million Jehovah's Witnesses in 240 countries worldwide. They have no political affiliations and they renounce violence. However, they have been easy targets for many governments.
The Multi-faith Chapel at Hebrew Senior Life / Newbridge On The Charles, Dedham, Massachusetts. Randall Armor

The changing nature of sacred spaces

Even as congregations decline, chapels, meditation and prayer rooms are evolving as spaces of multi-faith worship and quiet reflection.

More Analysis and Comment

Just a thought

From the mid-1920s well into the Depression, there were roughly 85 preachers whose hundreds of singing sermons were recorded and heard throughout the black community nationwide via 78-rpm records. Jerry Zolten

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