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Religion & Belief

Weekend America's Religion & Belief Coverage


  • Hugging Saint

    Krissy Clark experiences Amma's hug

    If it's cold where you are this weekend, you can hug for warmth. Chances are, if you hug, it will be with someone you know. Such is not the case with a woman named Amma. In the last few days, Amma has hugged about 10,000 people. And next week she'll hug several thousand more. A couple years ago, she hugged Weekend America's Krissy Clark in San Francisco.

  • Race and Forgiveness

    Gwen Gipson

    Members of Macomb County's Renaissance Unity church faced the legacy of racism eight years ago. Out of the blue, their white, female minister asked whites to apologize to blacks in a forgiveness ceremony. The church has had several ministers since then. But church members say they'll never forget the impact of that moment.

  • Returning to God

    Antonia Bunton

    This weekend thousands of people will crowd into Detroit's Most Holy Redeemer Church. The 128-year-old building was once home to the largest Catholic parish in North America. Today, more than 5,000 people attend the six weekend masses. But for 35-year-old Antonia Bunton, going to church there every Saturday is a special privilege.

  • The Real Story of Hanukkah

    Sora Golob making latkes

    Sunday is the first night of Hanukkah. Traditionally, Hanukkah wasn't a major holiday for Jews. But its position on the calendar gave American Jews a chance to enjoy the holiday season. Hanukkah's assimilation can be a sensitive subject among Jews. But independent producer Eric Molinsky looked into the origins of Hanukkah and found that these tensions are nothing new.

  • High Times and Halvah

    And You Shall Know Us By The Trail of Our Vinyl

    Hanukkah starts this Sunday at sundown. A new book tracks Jewish history through four generations of Jewish albums. After discovering rare vinyl records of Jewish music during trips down to Florida retirement communities, Josh Kun and Roger Bennett put together a book that tells the story of Jewish past "by the records we have loved and lost."

  • Kosher Meets Capitalism

    Shabbat Dinner

    With the weekend comes Shabbat, or Shabbos: the Jewish day of rest. On Shabbat, Jewish law forbids certain, very specific kinds of "work." That means even very simple things day to day actions are forbidden - even turning the lights on and off. But in recent years, an industry has emerged which manages to merge modern convenience and this sacred time.

  • Muslim Cowboy

    Kareem Salama as a kid

    When he was growing up in northeast Oklahoma, Kareem Salama knew that he wanted to be a cowboy. Now he's an aspiring country music star. He's also a practicing Muslim. He sees no contradictions in that, saying his upbringing in Oklahoma made it all possible. Reporter Kyle Gassiott brings us his story.

  • Statements By Buildings

    Alabama civil rights movement monument

    The Supreme Court is in session. Next week, the justices will hear from a religious group that wants to put their "Seven Aphorisms" next to the Ten Commandments in a public square in Utah. The group says the government can't pick and choose religions to sanctify, and that monuments are "government speech." We got to thinking about all the things monuments have to say around the country.

  • Prop 8 Revisited

    Prop 8 opponents comfort eachother on Nov. 5

    This week, the buzzword was "hope" for many voters around the country. But not for gay and lesbian couples in California, where the electorate passed ballot Proposition 8 - a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. Three lawsuits have already been filed to overturn the ban. While the presidential campaign is finally over, the fight over the definition of marriage still has a long way to go.

  • Letters: Loser Candy, Religious Guilt and Scary Movies

    "Loser" Candy?

    We open the Weekend America mailbag and hear your responses to recent stories, including a defense of "loser" Halloween treats and questions about religious guilt and P-O-R-N. Finally, we speak with Dr. Joanne Cantor, a former professor of Communication Arts, about the neurological reasons why scary movie memories stay with us forever.

  • Conversations with America: Lindsey O'Connor

    Lindsey O'Connor

    You'll head into a voting booth soon, if you haven't already voted from home, and declare who you think would lead the country most effectively. You'll take a leap of faith, you might say. This fall, we've been asking people to bring us their take on what's important to them as they prepare to cast their vote. We're calling it Conversations with America. Our essay today comes from Colorado author Lindsey O'Connor.

  • A Joyful Noise

    Reggie Prim in 1979

    Reggie Prim spent his childhood being raised with the Black Hebrews in Israel. As a kid, he sang with the music group the Tonistics - a religious soul group modeled after the Jackson 5. The Tonistics' songs from the early 1970s have just been re-released. Reggie isn't exactly nostalgic for his childhood in Israel. But the re-release of the music from Dimona has brought back memories about his extraordinary journey from Israel back to the United States.

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