Articles on Scriptures

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New priests being ordained during a ceremony led by Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, when they take vows, including to remain celibate. AP Photo/Andrew Medichini

How views on priestly celibacy changed in Christian history

Early Christians were open to marriage for priests. It wasn't until the 12th century that celibacy became mandatory in the Catholic Church.
Thai monks pray during a cleansing ceremony and memorial service for Saman Gunan, the Thai SEAL diver who died while trying to rescue the boys trapped in the cave. AP Photo/Vincent Thian

The rescued Thai boys are considering becoming monks — here’s why

In Theravada Buddhism, ordaining to be a monk and donating the merit thus gained is one of the greatest honors that a person can give to another - in this case to the Navy SEAL officer, who died.
Pope Paul VI banned contraception for Catholics in the 1968 encyclical, “Humanae Vitae.” AP Photo/Jim Pringle

How the Catholic Church came to oppose birth control

July marks 50 years of Pope Paul VI's encyclical prohibiting contraceptive use. For many years prior to it, the church had not been so explicit on its stance. How did it become such a thorny issue?
Songwriters such as Nick Cave (pictured) and the late Yolngu star Gurrumul have often drawn on the scriptures in their work. Paul Bergen/EPA

Why our declining biblical literacy matters

In less than two generations, the proportion of Australians who never pick up a Bible has leapt to seven out of ten. But a robust biblical literacy can help us decode creative works and understand the past.
Accepting grief is important for moving toward hope. Shanon Wise

Why there is no healing without grief

After Donald Trump's victory, a scholar says the biblical prophets can help show us the way forward: Just as there is no peace without justice, there is no healing without grief.

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