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How I Lost a Kidney and Gained My Faith

Mary Katherine Backstrom | Posted 04.27.2015 | Women
Mary Katherine Backstrom

"You are donating your right kidney, correct?" Sharpie Nurse asked without really needing an answer. "That's what my kidnappers said," I cracked, as she pulled aside my hospital gown. She scrawled a big YES on my right side and a NO on my left. I felt cold.

What are You Playing For? Pitching for a Greater Purpose

Jeremy Affeldt | Posted 04.21.2015 | Sports
Jeremy Affeldt

Having a purpose for being a professional athlete will actually help you immensely on the field because you're free from self-absorption. You have a purpose far bigger than yourself, and for me, that purpose is making sure other people have a chance to be successful.

Brittany Snow & Maggie Kiley Have Faith in Dial A Prayer

Kristin McCracken | Posted 04.30.2015 | Entertainment
Kristin McCracken

Now in select theaters and on nationwide digital platforms, Dial A Prayer is a film about positivity, redemption, and letting the light find its way into the darkest places. I talked with Kiley and Snow about their work together.

How Faith Matters in Battling Smoking Epidemic

David Briggs | Posted 04.21.2015 | Religion
David Briggs

New studies are adding to a growing body of evidence that religion may help deter smoking, particularly among marginalized groups that have the greatest health risks.

Fierce Trials of Family and Faith in Berkeley Rep's Stunning Head of Passes

Leo Stutzin | Posted 04.20.2015 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

After a short while, it turns into a deluge that pours through the roof in volumes that buckets can't contain; and finally, as lights flicker and thunder roars, it brings down the house. Literally. The roof crashes, floors and walls tilt, and flood waters rise. On Berkeley Rep's Thrust Stage.

I Will No Longer Pay Taxes for War

Matthew Hoh | Posted 04.17.2015 | Politics
Matthew Hoh

No longer can I look past the reality that my annual voluntary forfeiture of money to my government pays for violence around the globe, at astounding levels, and I am not able to provide any more excuses or rationalizations that paying without protest, that being complicit in funding war without resistance, is not contradictory to my faith and to my conscience.

Are You the Walking Dead?

Tenille Livingston | Posted 04.10.2015 | GPS for the Soul
Tenille Livingston

There are many among us that are aimlessly searching for things without substance. They are merely living, but existing and settling for the crumbs of...

Overcoming a Devastating Loss to Live Again

Eldonie Mason | Posted 04.09.2015 | Religion
Eldonie Mason

In three short years of togetherness he was gone. I went from planning a wedding to planning a funeral; from making the final alterations on my wedding dress to buying a dress for his funeral.

Love and Alka-Seltzer: The Transplant and the Tween

Joey Hoffman | Posted 04.10.2015 | Parents
Joey Hoffman

Flying into Omaha now, I see the skyline (which I call, The Building) and still pine for my Manhattan. But I've realized that home is an internal state, and I've realized that a city girl can thrive outside her natural habitat, as long as she's got love -- and Alka-Seltzer.

Parker J. Palmer on Racial Injustice and the Standard of Faithfulness

Ryan Thomas Neace | Posted 04.09.2015 | Religion
Ryan Thomas Neace

Parker J. Palmer is an author, educator, and activist who focuses on issues in education, community, leadership, spirituality and social change, with nearly 10 books and countless articles to his credit.

Damaged Goods

Beth Whitley | Posted 04.09.2015 | Parents
Beth Whitley

Sometimes, in trying to explain the impact that Rett Syndrome has had on our lives, I have referred to myself and my husband as "damaged goods." People don't respond to this very well.

3 Ways to Feel Happier

Rabbi Evan Moffic | Posted 04.09.2015 | Religion
Rabbi Evan Moffic

Generosity fosters gratitude by orienting our minds and hearts outside of ourselves. It turns our attention away from the that inner voice of criticism -- that voice that says we are not enough.

The Vulnerable Faith of Brené Brown

Jamie Arpin-Ricci | Posted 04.08.2015 | Books
Jamie Arpin-Ricci

From the covering of our nakedness in Eden to the polite dishonesty of "putting on our Sunday best", pretense is borne from our fear -- fear of being judged, alienated and rejected. Yet it also becomes the prison that keeps us bound up.

The Radical Challenge of Faith

Peter A. Georgescu | Posted 04.08.2015 | Religion
Peter A. Georgescu

Until mid-June, you'll be able to see some of the greatest sculpture in the world on exhibit here in the U.S. The work is on loan from Florence Cathedral, now on view at the Museum of Biblical Art in New York City.

Questioning Black Religious Faith

Tiya Miles | Posted 04.07.2015 | Black Voices
Tiya Miles

It turns out that there is a small but increasingly visible African American discussion about disbelief in God, about the narrow sexual and cultural politics of Black churches, and about major moral problems facing us today that may not be suited to solutions from the pulpit.

How To Know When Your Marriage Is Really, Truly Over

Melissa Levis | Posted 04.07.2015 | Divorce
Melissa Levis

To all of you on the fence, take your time. Have faith that you will know when you are ready to know. Then once you know, leap with abandon and never look back. You will land as I have on the glistening shores of beautiful, wide open life.

The Journey of a Gay Jesus

James Brandon | Posted 04.06.2015 | Gay Voices
James Brandon

Could Jesus have been gay? This is not a new question for many theologians, and certainly not for me. I've played the central role in Terrence McNally's gay passion play Corpus Christi for the past nine years now. And with that exploration has come this beautiful yin and yang of backlash and catharsis that has transcended art and completely transformed my life as I knew it.

Between Rocco's and a Hard Place

Charlie Carillo | Posted 06.03.2015 | New York
Charlie Carillo

I'm about to leave the house on my way to the airport and when I pat my jacket pocket to make sure I've got my wallet, it's not there. Don't panic, I tell myself -- it's somewhere in the house.

Good Friday:Christ's Offering and Ours

Christine Carter | Posted 06.03.2015 | Religion
Christine Carter

I always feel a stirring in my heart during Holy week. The weight of a heavy shadow hovers over me, as I reflect on the torturing assault Christ endured on that fateful day.

Teddy's Letters

Stan Duncan | Posted 06.02.2015 | Politics
Stan Duncan

This week the President, Vice President, legislators of both parties, and friends and family near and far gathered in Boston for the opening of the new "Edward Kennedy Institute of Politics."

Raising a Soulful Child

Hallie Sawyer | Posted 06.02.2015 | Parents
Hallie Sawyer

Having a child who feels so deeply and infers things at such a tender age is an amazing experience.

Good Friday Mettle

Rev. Susan Baller-Shepard | Posted 06.01.2015 | Religion
Rev. Susan Baller-Shepard

Good Friday's a reminder that Jesus stepped up, and not away, from the challenges before him. How to be more like Christ, or in the quirky vernacular, "What would Jesus do?" Good Friday is a day to watch and learn.

For Those Who Do Believe -- Rebuttal to Those Who Don't

Mary McLaurine | Posted 05.31.2015 | Religion
Mary McLaurine

I do not understand why those that believe their connection to the Divine also believe that their god, their chosen path, is the only acceptable one to walk to enjoy belief, hope and automatic admission in Heaven's gates.

What If You Don't Have Faith in Yourself?

Samantha Bennett | Posted 05.30.2015 | Healthy Living
Samantha Bennett

It's a cold, empty feeling, that not-having-faith-in-yourself feeling. Especially in this bright-eyed American culture of mandatory optimism. But so...

Faith in Words

Nancy Davis Kho | Posted 05.30.2015 | Religion
Nancy Davis Kho

One author gravitated toward talking about trust, another toward courage, a third wanted to focus on doubt, and a fourth wanted to focus on community. And then they asked if I'd talk about humor.