Bob Smietana

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More Americans stay away from church as pandemic nears year three

(RNS) — At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly every congregation in the United States shut down, at least for a while.

Missionary pilot Ryan Koher remains in custody in Mozambique, 6 weeks after arrest

(RNS) – When David Holsten first heard that missionary pilot Ryan Koher had been arrested in the city of Inhambane in southern Mozambique in early November, he was concerned but not too worried.

Report: Giving to larger churches dropped last year, even as charitable donations rose

(RNS) – An annual report on giving to evangelical Christian nonprofits, including churches and other ministries, found that giving to the United States’ largest churches fell by more than 6.6 percent in 2021, despite a rise of 4 percent last year in charitable giving nationwide.

Did faith fall off a cliff during COVID? New study says no.

(RNS) – When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many Americans lost the habit of churchgoing after almost every church in the country closed down their in-person services and shifted online.

Former FBI agent weighs in on DOJ’s investigation of SBC

(RNS) — More than four decades after sexual abuse claims against a Catholic priest first made national headlines, spurring accusations, lawsuits, a series of newspaper investigations and billions in settlements, the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating a religious group’s handling of sexual crimes by clergy and church staff.

Saddleback pastor Rick Warren to retire in September, names Andy Wood as his successor

(RNS) — After more than four decades, the pastor of one of the nation’s largest and most influential churches is ready to step down.

McLean Bible Church leaders hope a new church election will resolve lawsuit

(RNS) — Leaders of a prominent Washington, D.C.-area congregation hope to end an ongoing conflict by redoing a contested church election.

Like that new church worship song? Chances are, it will be gone soon.

(RNS) — The most popular worship song in churches these days is “Build My Life,” from Bethel Music, the megachurch-based worship music hit machine based in Northern California. Sitting at No. 1 on the top 100 worship song chart from Christian Copyright Licensing International, which licenses worship music, “Build My Life,” first released in 2016, […]

Why Vance Pitman resigned as top leader at his Las Vegas church

LAS VEGAS (RNS) – Two decades ago, Vance Pitman and a pair of friends from the Bible Belt went out West to start a church in Sin City.

Former Christianity Today editor Mark Galli accused of sexual harassment

CAROL STREAM, Ill. (RNS) – The former editor of a prominent evangelical magazine who made national headlines for criticizing Donald Trump’s failed character has been accused of sexual harassment during his tenure as editor.