2018 has been quite a year for our religious communities! Endless headlines centered around religious causes, leaders, and issues – demonstrating the immense impact our communities have had on the Nation.
From a major attack on a synagoge to abuse within the Catholic church, the United States saw headlines of evil in action — demonstrating that persecution and discrimination are still very alive within the U.S. The Department of Justice established a new task force to prosecute actions of evil associated with religious causes, such as the baker who was originally forced to bake for a wedding that violated his religious views.
We also watched anxiously as negotiations heighted with Turkey for the return of North Carolina Pastor Brunson, who had been held captive for preaching his faith abroad. He was freed this October — a win for religious freedom around the world!
Supreme Court issues were more at stake than ever this year. We confirmed a second pro-life justice under the Trump Administration — Justice Kavanaugh. This ensured better protections for life and people of faith throughout the country for generations to come.
We also celebrated the lives of several leaders of religious movements. Billy Graham, an evangelical pastor and spiritual counselor to several U.S. Presidents died at age 99. Former President George H.W. Bush also passed away at the end of the year, a strong Republican leader who brought evangelical issues front and center to policy. As the country mourned the loss of these two moral and religious men, their positive changes for the faithful were remembered also.
We’re proud of the impact people of faith had in 2018 and look forward to even more positive changes in 2019! For more religious headlines from 2018, check out the Religious News Service’s Year in Review.