Deseret News

Perspective: The Carson v. Makin decision won’t increase religious strife. It will reduce it

In its recent 6-3 decision in Carson v. Makin, the Supreme Court struck down a Maine law that prevented parents from using state-funded vouchers for their children’s education at religious schools. In most ways, the decision is a modest extension of previous precedents barring government from discriminating on the basis of religion. The case makes clear that states cannot discriminate against religious institutions based on “religious use” of funds, as well their religious “status,” thereby plugging a potential loophole states might have used to exclude religious entities and individuals from various government programs. But that is an essential element of any effective anti-discrimination rule.
Picture for Perspective: The Carson v. Makin decision won’t increase religious strife. It will reduce it

This ‘Faith and Freedom’ conference offered a glimpse of the GOP’s future

As the first notes of “I’m Proud to be an American” sounded, former President Donald Trump took the stage in Nashville, Tennessee, last week at the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s annual Road to Majority conference. He stood by the American flag for the entirety of the song, looking out at the crowd with his trademark expression that falls somewhere between a smile and a smirk.

Relieving the poor: The Ephraim Relief Society Granary

Mormon crickets and grasshoppers nearly decimated the harvest soon after Latter-day Saint pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley. After these difficult years, many Latter-day Saints started storing grain to avoid their previous trials, to exercise principles of self-reliance and to feed the poor. As part of the grain storage efforts,...

Why were these churches raided by the FBI?

Three churches were raided by the FBI Thursday, the Augusta Chronicle reports. The churches, all of which are near military bases, are affiliated with The House of Prayer Christian Church (HOPCC). The organization, a 501(c)(3), has five bible seminaries, and 12 churches (11 near military bases). In 2020, the Veterans...

Q&A: How former BYU and Utah Jazz player Andy Toolson is staying busy these days

News of Quin Snyder stepping down as head coach of the Utah Jazz earlier this month didn’t really surprise former Jazz player and BYU basketball star Andy Toolson. “It seemed like it had been brewing for a month or so, that there was some questions as to whether he would return or not,” Toolson said. “It takes a lot emotionally, and if it’s not the right situation, he must have felt that and felt it was time to move on.”

Minerva Teichert: A pioneer in painting

Early in her career, Minerva Teichert studied drawing and portraiture under Robert Henri in New York City. As she completed her training, Henri asked her if any artist had told “the great Mormon story.” Teichert said, “Not to suit me.”. Henri paused and said, “That’s your birthright....

Where religious objectors to the COVID-19 vaccines stand today

This article was first published in the State of Faith newsletter. Sign up to receive the newsletter in your inbox each Monday night. I received some lovely news last week: My work on faith-based resistance to the COVID-19 vaccines was recognized by the Society for Features Journalism in its “feature series” category. However, in the midst of my celebrations, it dawned on me that I’ve hardly touched on the topic in the past few months.

How the fight over school prayer became a battle for the soul of the nation

When Steven Smith reflects on the magnitude of the modern school prayer conflict, he thinks about how it all started with a prayer that was just a sentence long. That prayer, produced by the New York board of regents in the early 1950s, had been carefully crafted to avoid causing offense. It was meant to boost public schoolchildren’s moral education, not to challenge whatever their parents or pastors had taught them about God.

After 10 years of DACA, religious leaders call for permanent solutions and immigration reform

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program turned 10 years old this week but celebrations were tempered by calls for permanent solutions. While DACA allows some of those who were brought to America by undocumented parents to stay in the country legally and work, religious leaders point out that the policy excludes many people in similar circumstances — sometimes even siblings. This situation leads to mixed-status families that live under threat of losing immediate family members to deportation, they say.

Latter-day Saint missionary dies after Mexico City accident

A Latter-day Saint missionary died Friday from injuries sustained in a bicycle accident in Mexico, according to statement by a church spokesman released Saturday evening. Elder Francisco Rene Lamadrid, 22, of Mérida, Mexico, died in Mexico City, where he had been serving since March 21 in the Mexico City East Mission, church spokesman Sam Penrod said.