In 2018

It’s been another long week of seemingly nonstop, stop-the-presses breaking news stories. As important as those stories are, it’s also important for us to make sure we’re not missing important things taking place at the intersection of religion, government and politics. On this week’s State of Belief, Interfaith Alliance’s weekly radio show and podcast, we’ll find out why the nuns are getting back on the bus, how on-the-ground activism across lines of religion is healing mistrust and division, and how the Satanic Temple has taken up the cause of separation of Church and State.

In 2012, Sister Simone Campbell led the first Nuns on the Bus tour, a cross-country campaign featuring Catholic nuns traveling on – what else? – a bus. Protesting Trump’s $1.2 trillion tax cut for the wealthy, the nuns will again board the bus and travel through 21 states, starting in Los Angeles and ending at Mar-a-Lago. Once they arrive at the president’s West Palm Beach resort, they’re planning a “Fiesta for the Common Good.” This week, State of Belief host Rev. Welton Gaddy will sit down with Sister Simone to discuss the return of Nuns on the Bus.

Dividing people along religious lines is a technique as old as religion itself. It’s been used to conquer, to control and to destroy great nations throughout history. And we’ve seen it weaponized in this country in ways that are both effective, and terrifying. So, what can we do when our country seems more divided than ever? The One America Movement was created to bridge the divides between ostensibly opposing coalitions through conflict resolution, science and faith. Andrew Hanauer, director of the One America movement, will join Welton to discuss the organization’s vision and how we can begin to heal the fractures within our society.

Little Rock lawmakers have been hell-bent to erect a Ten Commandments monument on the Arkansas state capitol grounds. Among the myriad of responses to this government-funded sectarian display, the Satanic Temple, led by co-founder Lucien Greaves, petitioned the state legislature to place a statue of Baphomet, the goat-headed representation of Satan. Welton will speak with Lucien about the statue, the point of their petition, the Temple’s passion for separation of church and state, and what it actually means to be a Satanist.

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