Thursday's News & Ideas

  • More Hobby Lobby exemptions
  • Abuse by Yoder
  • Church sales & American demographics
  • NFL player's Communion business
  • 'Affair' with a youth pastor
  • Pfc. Toppen's final trip home

Hobby Lobby is already creating new religious demands on ObamaThe Atlantic: Faith leaders friendly to the administration are asking for an exemption from a forthcoming gay-rights order.

MC USA group reports more evidence of abuseMennonite World Review: A Mennonite Church USA discernment group addressing sexual abuse by the late theologian John Howard Yoder has reported finding additional evidence of abuse.

How church sales reflect the shifting American demographicThe Atlantic: Say goodbye to your corner church and namaste to the mandir -- sales of houses of worship are a window to America's changing population.

Football player Israel Idonije tackles expanding his Communion businessReligion News Service: Former Chicago Bears defensive lineman Israel Idonije has a side business, Blessed Communion, that sells pre-filled Communion cups to churches.

My "affair" with a youth pastorOn Faith: It took Marie Jensen years to realize that her relationship with her pastor was not romantic -- it was sexual abuse.

The Spark

The final trip home of Pfc. Aaron ToppenOn June 9, 2014, in Afghanistan, a unit of U.S. and Afghan soldiers was hit by friendly fire, killing one Afghan and five Americans, including 19-year-old Pfc. Aaron Toppen, of Mokena, Illinois. The Atlantic's In Focus photography blog captures the series of memorials and transfers that returned his body to the U.S. -- a sequence of events carried out some 2,200 times since the start of the war in Afghanistan.

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