Idaho lawmakers said amen for public school teachers to use the Bible in classrooms. The Idaho House voted 54-15 Monday to allow religious texts, including the Bible, to be used for reference purposes.

Faith Community Weighs In On Gun Initiatives

Oct 22, 2014
M Glasgow / Flickr

This November, Washingtonians will vote on two opposing initiatives on background checks for firearms: 591 and 594. Some of the leading voices on the gun rights debate have come from religious organizations. Reporter Ryan Katz tells us how communities of faith have been viewing this issue.

On a Friday evening in late September, a couple hundred people arrive at the United Methodist Church in Queen Anne to listen to some classical music. But this particular event was not supposed to happen here, and not now. It was meant to happen at Seattle Pacific University, in June.

"Pessimism, skepticism, complaint, and outrage," New York dentist Paul O'Rourke explains to his devoutly religious hygienist. "That's why we were put on earth."

Barbara Ehrenreich is known for her books and essays about politics, social welfare, class, women's health and other women's issues. Her best-seller Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America, explored the difficulties faced by low-wage workers. So fans of Ehrenreich's writing may be surprised at the subject of her new memoir — the mystical visions she had as a teenager.

Editor's note: To hear our full interview with Jimmy Carter, tune into Weekend Edition on Sunday, March 23.

President Jimmy Carter has written more than two dozen books over the course of his career, about everything from the art of aging to how to achieve peace in the Middle East. All his writing is anchored by a deep-seated belief in the equality of all people.

Thou Shalt Not...

Mar 21, 2014
City of Sandpoint

A little-known display of the 10 Commandments in North Idaho has attracted the attention of a couple of national legal organizations.  The issue involves a stone monument in a city park in Sandpoint.  It has similarities to a controversy over a war memorial in Coos Bay, Oregon.

Washington’s Supreme Court will decide whether employers must accommodate the religious practices of their employees. The high court heard oral arguments Tuesday in a case involving four employees of an airline catering company.

Sueann Ramella / NWPR

Off Crooked Mile Road in Granite Falls, Washington stands a giant wooden Torii. This Japanese arch marks the entrance to the only Shinto shrine on mainland U.S. soil: the Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America. It’s serene here cedar trees rising up along the banks of the Pilchuck River.

When religious scholar Reza Aslan was 15, he went to an evangelical Christian camp. For the first time, he heard the gospel story — the story of Jesus. It was a profound experience for him, and he immediately converted. But later, when Aslan went to college and began working toward a degree in the New Testament, he found he had doubts.

Writer and scholar Reza Aslan was 15 years old when he found Jesus. His secular Muslim family had fled to the U.S. from Iran, and Aslan's conversion was, in a sense, an adolescent's attempt to fit into American life and culture. "My parents were certainly surprised," Aslan tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

There’s a new development in the case of a Richland, Wash. florist who refused to sell flowers for a same sex couple’s wedding. The business owner’s lawyers announced a counter suit Thursday saying the florist “will not wilt.”

The owner of Arlene’s Flowers argues there are plenty of other shops in the Tri-Cities that could cater to a gay or lesbian wedding. But lawyers for Barronelle Stutzman say she’s refusing that business because of her religious beliefs.

Jack Liu

An estimated 11 thousand people heard Tibetan Spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, speak at the University of Oregon's Matthew Knight Arena Friday. His message: peace and compassion. KLCC's Rachael McDonald reports.

Latah County Historical Society

You’re probably aware of TV evangelists. They speak to you through the television, some claiming to heal you through the screen. Before television, there were radio evangelists, and mail-order evangelists. One of which offered a money-back guaranteed religion, and was headquartered in the Northwest. Sueann Ramella has the story of the Mail-Order prophet of Moscow, Idaho.  

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Students would be able to take up to two days off per year for religious holidays under a proposal in Olympia. A hearing is scheduled Monday on a bill that would benefit Muslim students celebrating Ramadan.

Pastors Use Pulpits To Ease Election Day Rancor

Nov 5, 2012
Photo by York Minster / Creative Commons

In this election, religion has sometimes played a divisive role. But on election night, churches throughout the Northwest — and the country — will try to use their pulpits to ease the rancor of politics. Deena Prichep explains.

Religion Not A Factor In Latino Politics

Oct 5, 2012
Photo by Florangela Davila

Religion is one of the most defining characteristics of Latino culture. But pollsters say it plays virtually no role in how they vote. This week, we've been looking at Latinos in Northwest politics. In our next story, Florangela Davila looks at how faith shapes the lives of two Mexican-American siblings. But not their politics.

Photo by Chris Lehman. / Northwest News Network

In Oregon, the number of Latino Episcopalians has increased more than five-fold over the past decade. Church leaders say the influx is, in part, because the denomination's worship services look and sound familiar to Hispanics raised in the Catholic Church. But as Correspondent Chris Lehman reports, Northwest Episcopal Churches are luring Latinos with a focused marketing campaign.

The 10 o'clock high mass at Saints Peter and Paul Episcopal Church in Portland, Oregon probably sounds a lot like it did when the congregation was founded nearly a century ago.

Photo by Chris Lehman / Northwest News Network

Hundreds gathered in Salem Tuesday evening to remember victims of the recent mass shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin. Sikh and non-Sikh speakers at the candlelight vigil emphasized peace and unity. Salem Correspondent Chris Lehman spoke with some of those who attended the vigil.

Photo courtesy Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation

The president of Gonzaga University in Spokane is defending the choice of Archbishop Desmond Tutu as the school’s commencement speaker next month. Some alumni say Tutu’s positions on social issues make him an inappropriate choice for the Catholic school.

Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Tutu has expressed support for abortion rights, contraception, same-sex marriage and the ordination of gay clergy. Next month, he’s slated to receive an honorary law degree at Gonzaga’s graduation ceremony.

BOISE - Religions frequently struggle to find a balance between the spiritual and material world. To some people Heaven and Earth often seem at odds. Today, though, many faith-based organizations are finding that the garden. In this installment of Edible Idaho, correspondent Guy Hand looks at Northwest churches that believe good soil can nurture the human soul.