Five myths about Saint Nicholas

BY ADAM C. ENGLISH You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen. But do you recall Saint Nicholas of Myra, the man behind Santa Claus? The jolly old elf of Christmastime lore is an embellishment on the historical persona of a Christian pastor from the fourth century. Our forbearers adapted his legacy to suit […]

Trump’s Jerusalem move triggered many evangelicals’ anxieties about the apocalypse.

A deluge of news in recent weeks, including the contentious election involving evangelical judge Roy Moore and President Donald Trump’s decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem has quite a few evangelicals on edge. Many are taking to Twitter to process their thoughts through the hashtag #RaptureAnxiety, which explores the many ways in which […]

Times change! Yanni to perform 4 concerts in Saudi Arabia

The internationally-renown Greek musician, Yanni, revealed on Wednesday in a Tweet that he will be performing four concerts in Saudi Arabia. Yanni expressed joy as he shared the announcement, writing “I wanted to let you know that I have been invited by the country of Saudi Arabia to perform there, with my orchestra, and I […]

Iranian woman: ‘We hate the headscarf’

Can women find freedom in Tehran’s female-only parks? Parks exclusively for women are popping up in Iranian cities, but critics are divided over whether this is just another ploy to keep them hidden in public “I love to take off my headscarf,” says Laleh, 47, a hairdresser from Tehran. She’s sitting with a group of […]

Saudi women step into haj emergency role for the first time

MECCA (Reuters) – Seven women sit in front of computer screens fielding distress calls from across Mecca ahead of the annual haj pilgrimage this week, in a first for Saudi Arabia as it tries to expand participation in the workforce. The seven, almost all wearing the black niqab over their faces, form the first women’s […]

Israeli woman in USA offers to pay $4000 on Craiglist to have her ex-husband killed

An Israeli woman living in Oklahoma allegedly offered to pay $4,000 to have her ex-husband in Israel killed. Danielle Dana Layman of Ponca City, Oklahoma, posted the job for a “discrete” actor on Craigslist, calling it a “10 day gig overseas for amateur, competitive pay!” The job requirements listed also included a “creative, outgoing and […]

German parliament legalises same-sex marriage

Germany’s parliament voted on Friday to legalise gay marriage. This comes after Chancellor Angela Merkel did an about-face that freed members of conservative party to vote their “conscience” rather than follow party lines. Norbert Lammert, president of the parliament, said 393 lawmakers voted to approve the amendment, while 226 voted against and four abstained. FRANCE24/(REUTERS)

Iran: Women use their smartphones to fight back the “morality police”

With black chadors over their uniforms, officers of Iran’s “guidance patrols” are a scourge for Iranian women who want to wear bright colours and push the limits of the Islamic Republic’s dress code. But some Iranian women are fighting back, using their smartphones to document what happens once they are arrested. The Gasht-e-Ershad (guidance patrol) […]

Pope Francis proclaims 2 Fátima siblings in Portugal Saints

Pope Francis canonized two Portuguese shepherd children during a Mass on Saturday, a century after the children and their cousin said they first saw the Virgin Mary here. The children, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, along with an older cousin, Lúcia de Jesus dos Santos, told skeptical elders that they had witnessed six apparitions of the […]