The U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops convened the 2003 Catholic Social Ministry Gathering in Washington. More than 500 people registered under the theme “Blessed are the Peacemakers.” Taken from Jesus Christ’s Sermon on the Mount, organizers said the theme “recognizes the call to heal in a world broken by conflict, division, and inequality.” The conference was planned and hosted by the USCCB’s Department of Justice, Peace and Human Development, along with 20 other national Catholic organizations.
The Evangelical Covenant Church is the latest among many Christian networks struggling over the LGBTQ issues. The denomination founded in 1885 is being asked to expel two congregations this summer at the annual ECC meeting: Awaken Church in St. Paul, Minnesota, and Quest Church in Seattle. Both churches have violated a 2015 rule prohibiting congregations or clergy from ordaining or marrying gay people. “We agree on 99.9 percent of things,” said Micah Witham, pastor at Awaken Church. “This one matter … I would contend is a nonessential.”
Angel Studios announced that the final episodes of its “Chosen” television series were released in public theaters and ranked 9th in revenue for this last weekend. Most of the episodes of the three-year series have been released through live-streaming by the faith-based production studio. The series is a dramatic presentation of the life of Jesus as presented in the four gospels.
Orthodox Christian minister John Zizioulas of Pergamon, one of the most influential Orthodox theologians of modern times, died on February 2. He was co-chairman of the International Commission for Anglican–Orthodox Theological Dialogue from 1989 to 2007. A native of Greece, Zizioulas studied at the University of Thessaloniki and the University of Athens and taught theology in Greece, Scotland, and England. Holding the Orthodox ecclesial title of Metropolitan (above a bishop and below a patriarch), he was the primary Orthodox interlocutor (or conversation partner) with Anglicans during the leadership of Canterbury Archbishops Robert Runcie, George Carey, and Rowan Williams.
Bonnie Raitt invoked the late, great John Prine when she shocked everyone by winning the 2023 Grammy for song of the year. She wrote and sang “Just Like That,” a song about an organ donor. Other winners in the category Gospel and Contemporary Christian Music: Best Gospel Performance/Song: “Kingdom” by Maverick City Music & Kirk Franklin; Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song: “Fear Is Not My Future” by Maverick City Music & Kirk Franklin; Best Gospel Album: One Deluxe by Maverick City Music & Kirk Franklin; Best Contemporary Christian Music Album, Breathe by Maverick City Music; and Best Roots Gospel Album, The Urban Hymnal by Tennessee State University Marching Band.