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Mainline Protestants

Day 1 Faith & Science Series: Ted Peters on God and Cosmos

Rev. Peter M. Wallace | Posted 10.02.2015 | Religion
Rev. Peter M. Wallace

In his 1979 book Disturbing the Universe, Freeman Dyson wrote, "As we look out into the universe and identify the many accidents of physics and astronomy that have worked together to our benefit, it almost seems as if the universe must in some sense have known we were coming."

Day 1 Faith & Science Series Begins: How Can Faith and Science Inform Each Other?

Rev. Peter M. Wallace | Posted 09.25.2015 | Religion
Rev. Peter M. Wallace

Does the universe make any sense? Does the cosmos have purpose? And what about us human beings? Do we matter? Is there any way to know? Listen to so...

Engaging the Spiritually Disconnected: Inviting the Culture to Move to the Deeper End of Life's Pool

Rev. Peter M. Wallace | Posted 09.23.2015 | Religion
Rev. Peter M. Wallace

Last Sunday at the church where I am assisting priest I spoke with an obviously frustrated woman just before Sunday school. I know her as a caring, active servant and wonderful counselor.

A Protestant's Hope for the Roman Catholic Year of Mercy

Rob Lee | Posted 09.02.2015 | Religion
Rob Lee

In this broken world we need mercy, we need redemption, and we most certainly need to be united. So as our Catholic brothers and sisters celebrate and mark their year of mercy, may we in the Protestant tradition be bold enough to share in that work of grace with them.

5 Signs of the Resurrection of the Mainline Church

Rev. Dr. Janet Edwards | Posted 09.01.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Janet Edwards

What might this risen church look like? Here are some signs I see of this revival in the Presbyterian Church. I invite you to watch for them in all the mainline American churches. Do you see them too?

Guns and the Godly

Lawrence Wittner | Posted 07.02.2015 | Religion
Lawrence Wittner

There should be something disturbing to people committed to love and peace about the fact that, among all economically-developed countries, the United States has by far the highest rate of gun-related murders in the world.

Progressives Look Forward

Martin Marty | Posted 05.25.2015 | Religion
Martin Marty

Paul Raushenbush has dropped two "c's" from his famed Christian-theologian-minister great-grandfather Walter Rauschenbusch's name, but he reflects the ancestor's tradition, captures some of his spirit, and looks to the future in that spirit.

'Nones' are 'someones' in vibrant U.S. religious landscape

David Briggs | Posted 05.20.2015 | Religion
David Briggs

The end is not near for religion in America -- or elsewhere in the world. What analysts are trying to divine, however, is the mystery of why more people are indicating "none" when asked their religious affiliation.

Theological Liberalization is Not to Blame for Decline in Mainline Protestantism

Benjamin Knoll | Posted 05.14.2015 | Religion
Benjamin Knoll

The way to prevent further disenchantment with organized religion among young people is for religious leaders and laypeople alike to sever the exclusive link between religion and conservative politics in the United States.

About All That Mainline Handwringing

Tony Jones | Posted 03.16.2015 | Religion
Tony Jones

There's no doubt that religion in America is a fascinating topic of study, what with its cycles and its larger-than-life personalities. The time we're in right now is, as it has been, both the same and different.

Why Liberal Protestantism Should Quit Living in Fear of Its Own Death

Derek Penwell | Posted 03.07.2015 | Religion
Derek Penwell

Are we too liberal? Do we have enough arbitrary rules to halt the decline and sustain a stable membership? These are questions that should be qualified by being asked in light of the most important question: Are we following Jesus faithfully?

The No. 1 Reason Teens Keeps the Faith as Young Adults

David Briggs | Posted 12.29.2014 | Religion
David Briggs

Mothers and fathers who practice what they preach and preach what they practice are far and away the major influence related to adolescents keeping the faith into their 20s, according to new findings from a landmark study of youth and religion.

Creating Creationists: Cutting Out the Middle in the Science-Religion Dialogue

David Briggs | Posted 12.01.2014 | Religion
David Briggs

The debate about whether science and religion are adversaries often misses the fact that many people are comfortable both with their faith and the idea God plays a role in the universe.

Resident Aliens

Martin Marty | Posted 11.22.2014 | Religion
Martin Marty

While the target audience in this case consists of Protestants, a.k.a. "Mainline Protestants," many other kinds of people "living faithfully" in religious communities could recognize themselves in the issues involved, if not in the "selfie" portraits of potential "aliens."

Does Declining Membership Mean God Thinks You Suck?

Derek Penwell | Posted 11.09.2014 | Religion
Derek Penwell

The goal of following Jesus has never been the kind of growth that satisfies the ecclesiastical bean counters anyway; it's about doing what you believe -- were he to find himself in the same position -- Jesus might do.

7 Reasons Not to Freak Out About Protestant Mainline Decline

Derek Penwell | Posted 10.14.2014 | Religion
Derek Penwell

Year-over-year, our loss of Total and Participating Membership sits close to 20 percent, but that our Average Worship Attendance is only a little over 4 percent. That is a shocking loss to absorb in a single year.

Hispanic Catholic Trends

Martin Marty | Posted 07.19.2014 | Religion
Martin Marty

Many Catholics are looking for and hoping for the "Pope Francis Effect" to have its effect on attendance at mass and other Catholic parish activities. To date this effect has failed to materialize.

Alban Institute Closes After Forty Years

Religion News Service | Sarah Pulliam Bailey | Posted 03.21.2014 | Religion

(RNS) As mainline Protestant denominations continue decades of decline, one of the main institutions helping educate its leaders announced Wednesday (...

Mainline Churches: Past, Present, Future

William B. Bradshaw | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
William B. Bradshaw

What is in store for the Mainline Protestant churches, as well as for the more evangelical, fundamentalist, and/or charismatic Protestant denominations and independent churches? Reason might suggest that both groups should move a little to the religious middle.

Bob Edgar: A Christian for the Common Good (1943-2013)

Morgan Guyton | Posted 06.25.2013 | Religion
Morgan Guyton

Bob believed in democracy, and he believed that Christians should fight for the common good. It was devastating to learn of his sudden death this week in a dark time when his prophetic vision has never been more sorely needed.

Mainline Protestantism: Numbers Count, But Prestige Matters More

Elesha Coffman | Posted 06.08.2013 | Religion
Elesha Coffman

It's useful to recall this longstanding association between the Protestant mainline and the Christian intelligentsia as stories enumerating mainline decline pile up.

George McGovern And The Social Gospel Movement To End Hunger

Chris Herlinger | Posted 12.22.2012 | Religion
Chris Herlinger

The death of George McGovern -- the son of a Methodist minister and himself briefly a seminary student at a Methodist institution -- is a reminder of the good of that Protestant reform impulse, rooted in the Social Gospel movements of the early and mid-20th century.

'Nones' On The Rise: How Anti-Gay, Anti-Choice Churches Are Creating Their Own Demise

Michelangelo Signorile | Posted 12.15.2012 | Gay Voices
Michelangelo Signorile

I've always felt we religiously unaffiliated "Nones" were a tiny minority. But here we are, surging in an America that's been steeped in religious dogma, where Republican politics has been overrun by zealots hellbent on controlling women's bodies and discriminating against gays.

The Candle or the Mirror: Living Out Faith in an Era of Agnosticism

Reverend William E. Flippin, Jr. | Posted 12.14.2012 | Black Voices
Reverend William E. Flippin, Jr.

Haven't we all met the Christian who's so compelling to us that his or her presence inspires our faith? And haven't we also met that sister or brother whose words, actions or attitudes cause us to literally doubt our faith?

Reaching Out To Young Adults Will Screw Up Your Church

Rev. Adam J. Copeland | Posted 07.30.2012 | Religion
Rev. Adam J. Copeland

While many mainline churches say "we want young people," they don't really. If young adults actually showed up and joined their church for good, the change they'd naturally bring with them would be stark, even off-putting.