Religion in Prisons
Professional prison chaplains see America’s state penitentiaries as places bustling with religious activity, ranging from efforts by inmates to proselytize or convert other inmates to religious switching by prisoners, according to a survey of chaplains in all 50 states.
Public Divided Over Birth Control Insurance Mandate
Americans are closely divided over whether religiously-affiliated institutions should be given an exemption if they object to a proposed federal rule requiring employers to cover birth control as part of their health care benefits.
In Brief: Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC
On Oct. 5, 2011, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a case that could help determine how much latitude religious organizations have in making employment decisions about clergy and others who perform religious duties.
The Civic and Community Engagement of Religiously Active Americans
Religiously active Americans are more tied to many civic and other organizations than non-religious Americans. Many report that their use of technology helps them in their group activities.
Database: Directory of Religious Advocacy Organizations
A searchable directory of religious and religion-related organizations in the Washington, D.C. area engaged in activities that seek to affect public policy
Lobbying for the Faithful
The number of organizations engaged in religious lobbying or religion-related advocacy in Washington, D.C. has increased roughly fivefold in the past four decades, from fewer than 40 in 1970 to more than 200 today. A new study by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life examines the agenda, strategy, religious affiliation and structure of 212 religious advocacy groups operating in the nation’s capital.
Rising Restrictions on Religion
More than 2.2 billion people — nearly a third (32%) of the world’s total population of 6.9 billion — live in countries where either government restrictions on religion or social hostilities involving religion rose substantially between mid-2006 and mid-2009.
Arab Spring Fails to Improve U.S. Image
The rise of pro-democracy movements in the Middle East has not led to an improvement in America’s image in the region. Instead, in key Arab nations and in other predominantly Muslim countries, views of the U.S. remain negative, as they have been for nearly a decade. And, with the exception of Indonesia, Obama remains unpopular in the Muslim nations polled.
Churches in Court
American religious institutions have been at the center of many legal controversies in recent years. These and related lawsuits raise complex constitutional questions that have been troubling American courts for more than a century. Are legal disputes involving churches and other religious institutions constitutionally different from those involving their secular counterparts, and if so, how?
Egypt, Democracy and Islam
In a survey conducted last spring, a majority of Egyptian Muslims said that democracy was preferable to any other kind of government. An overwhelming majority also believes Islam’s influence in politics is positive.