Listen Now

Tom Gjelten

Only about 200 people typically worship each Sunday at the Greenleaf Christian Church in Goldsboro, N.C., but as many as 40,000 others follow the service via Facebook livestream.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NOEL KING, HOST:

A group of Catholics empowered to advise U.S. bishops on their handling of clergy sex abuse is accusing the bishops of "a loss of moral leadership" and recommending that lay Catholics like themselves should henceforth be responsible for investigating clergy misconduct.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Sixteen years after an investigation in Boston highlighted the dimensions of the sex abuse crisis in the Catholic priesthood, the financial and reputational cost to the Catholic church continues to grow.

A two-year grand jury investigation in Pennsylvania resulted in what the state's attorney general, Josh Shapiro, called "the largest, most comprehensive report into child sex abuse in the Catholic Church ever produced in the United States."

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

A papal encyclical issued 50 years ago this summer marked a turning point in the way Roman Catholics view the teachings of their church.

On July 25, 1968, Pope Paul VI stunned Catholics around the world with his announcement of Humanae Vitae, "Of Human Life," a document in which he forcefully reaffirmed the church's previously stated position on the use of artificial birth control, calling it "intrinsically wrong."

The Southern Baptist Convention, the largest Protestant denomination in the country, wrapped up its annual meeting Wednesday on a partisan tone. The featured speaker was Vice President Pence, who spoke of the day he accepted Jesus Christ as his savior and of the importance of prayer, but mostly delivered a speech fit for a campaign rally.

The U.S. Supreme Court, having legalized same-sex marriage in 2015, now clarifies that people are still free to oppose it.

On Monday, the court ruled 7-2 in favor of a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple, citing his religious opposition to same sex marriage.

Roman Catholics and evangelicals, two Christian groups that have had overlapping political priorities in the past, find their agendas diverging in the era of President Trump and Pope Francis.

Tensions between the two faith traditions are hardly new. As fierce adversaries, they once cast doubt on each other's legitimacy as heirs to the church of Jesus Christ.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

The religious leader invited to give the opening prayer at the dedication of the American Embassy in Jerusalem is an evangelical Christian who once said that Judaism, along with Mormonism, Islam and Hinduism, is one of the religions "that lead people to an eternity of separation from God in Hell."

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Pages