Columbia Faith and Values

Weekends

Kellie Moore brings us an update from the Faith & Values desk.  This program is a collaboration between KBIA and Columbia FAVS.

Kellie Moore, ColumbiaFAVS.com

When Lauren Wieland graduated from eighth grade this month, there were 3 students in her graduating class.

  She was one of 32 students attending Zion Lutheran School, a two-room schoolhouse in Lone Elm, near Boonville.

When the school opened in 1896, it had only one room. It turns out, there are many one-room schoolhouses that still dot the landscape of rural Missouri today.

In the 1960s, Zion Lutheran got its second classroom. That’s also when the school got bathrooms – until then, it had old-fashioned outhouses.

Kellie Moore, ColumbiaFAVS.com

Since 2005, Mary Kelley’s 16 year-old-son has been hospitalized psychiatrically 36 times, lived in 7 different residential facilities, and been part of two therapeutic treatment systems.

He has oppositional defiant disorder, ADHD, anxiety, bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder.

Back when it all started, Kelley had no idea what to do, where to turn or why it was happening.

What started as research for a women’s retreat at church has become a book – a first book for local author Leslie Clay.

  In 2008, Clay was on the committee for the women’s retreat at Broadway Christian Church. That year’s theme was music, and Clay offered to play the piano as women arrived. She wanted to play songs written by women, so she started doing some research.

Soon, she had more than two hours’ worth of material to play. But she didn’t stop there.

Kellie Moore, ColumbiaFAVS.com

 

When a tornado devastated Joplin in spring 2011, South Joplin Christian Church didn’t have a plan.

“The reality is that I remember no conversations where we said, ‘We could do this and this, and be prepared for part of our town being wiped off the map, for our church being damaged, and for many of our families losing their homes and businesses,” said Jill Michel, the church’s pastor. “There were no conversations that started that way.”

Abigail Keel, ColumbiaFAVS.com

Three years ago, Larry Lile became his own boss. He started a consulting group that does energy audits of businesses and helps plan sustainable buildings.

His favorite part is the short walk to work: “I have about a 15-step walk to the office.”

But Lile also finds purpose in his work. Energy decisions, he said, are some of the most important issues we as a culture are making. He is dedicated helping businesses see that sustainable decisions are not only more ethical, but also economical. His personal life is proof of that.

Image courtesy Missouri United Methodist Church.

Christianity is due for a major transformation – potentially, something as big as the Protestant Reformation.

At least, that's how Phyllis Tickle sees it.

Tickle is the founding editor of the religion department at "Publishers Weekly," and the author of more than two dozen books. One of them, "The Great Emergence," explores where Christianity has been, is now, and could be headed.

This weekend, Tickle is visiting Columbia for two days of talks focused around one question: "What is the future of faith?"

Kellie Moore, ColumbiaFAVS.com

The Most Rev. Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori, the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, visited Fulton on Thursday (Feb. 27) to deliver a guest lecture and preside over a service at Westminster College. The lecture was held in the historic Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury. 

Kellie Moore, ColumbiaFAVS.com

 

It’s a chilly Thursday at noon, and there are 4 of us gathered in a tiny chapel on College Avenue for a mid-day service. I’m observing as Father John Prenger leads two other people through liturgy.

There are Bible readings, some responses from the Book of Common prayer, and a short message. 

When it’s time for holy communion, they gather around the altar. From one person to the next, they pass a tiny piece of bread, and a small chalice of wine. But it’s not just the bread and wine – to them, the body and blood of Jesus Christ are present. 

Churches reach out to children with special needs

Feb 1, 2014
Heather Adams, Columbia Faith & Values

Lora Hinkel grew up going to church with her family. Now that she has her own family, she has continued this tradition. But her son found it difficult to sit through services.

Her son, Blake, has autism. She tried to make accommodations by taking her son out into the hall or into another room. But eventually, they stopped going to church altogether.

Nate Anton / Columbia Faith & Values

This story was produced in partnership with Columbia Faith & Values (ColumbiaFAVS.com.)

Editor's note: We'd like to tell more stories of rural churches and their role in the community. If you think your church would be a good fit for one of our stories, or if you know of another church we should profile, please email Columbia Faith & Values Editor Kellie Moore at Kellie.Moore@ReligionNews.com.

Nate Anton / Favs Columbia

Death. It's often a taboo topic of conversation, despite its inevitability.

But that's not the case for everyone. David Oliver, retired medical professor at MU, and his wife, Debbie, gave a presentation yesterday evening (Dec. 3) titled, "Our Exit Strategy: Depriving Death of Its Strangeness."

We've got an exciting transition coming up at Columbia Faith & Values, the religion news website partnered with KBIA.

Some of you have heard our updates on KBIA on Saturday mornings. Since summer 2012, we've had a 3-minute time slot that starts at 8:34, which we've used to bring you feature stories, interviews and more. 

Listen to 3 minutes of our favorite soundbytes – the "best of" FAVS:

 

Kellie Kotraba/ColumbiaFAVS / KBIA

More than one year after the Islamic Society of Joplin was burned to the ground, an arrested man has confessed to setting the fire.

“The arrest will not bring the mosque back, but at least it will stop him from doing things like this again,” said Lahmuddin Lahmuddin, the mosques imam, on hearing the news.

A traditional goat slaughter: Sounds and images of Eid

Oct 19, 2013
Ryan Schuessler, Columbia Faith & Values / KBIA

Viewer and listener discretion: Some of the images below contain blood and show the slaughtering of a goat. The audio includes moments of this, as well, though we've made sure it's not gratuitous.

Kellie Kotraba, Columbia Faith & Values

Note: Kellie Kotraba is the editor of Columbia Faith & Values (ColumbiaFAVS.com), which runs KBIA's Faith & Values desk. 

When I accepted my job, I didn’t realize “tour guide” would be part of the job description. But here I am, preparing to lead a tour of some of Columbia’s downtown houses of worship. And it’s not the first time, either.

What comes after death in the Abrahamic faiths?

Oct 12, 2013
Katy Mersmann, Columbia Faith & Values

  When Rashed Nizam went home to Bangladesh this spring, he knew his father was close to death.

“All his life he was healthy,” Nizam said. But now, he was 90 years old. When Nizam got there, he could tell his father’s last moment was coming – he just didn’t know exactly when.

He prepared his family: “I said, ‘OK, you recite Quran, you say all the good, things, reminding him.’”

Two days later, on May 1, his father died.

Jill Ornitz, Columbia Faith & Values / KBIA

For George Frissell, giving students the opportunity to talk to Champa Lhunpo, a Tibetan monk, for the past 15 years has been a highlight of the world religions course he teaches at Hickman High School.

“Here’s someone who was a member of the Dalai Lama’s own monastery, and offers them [students] perhaps a perspective that’s one that they really can’t get from a book or from watching a video,” Frissell said.

Ryan Schuessler, Columbia Faith & Values / KBIA

Worshippers rhythmically sign songs to each other. A flurry of hand motions spells out which Bible verses are to be read. The pastor moves his hands dramatically, with impassioned facial expressions to accompany the movements. The only sounds you hear are the occasional cough, maybe knuckle cracking, or the sound of one hand hitting the other in the sign for “Amen.” 

Belief systems impact educator performance, Mizzou researcher finds

Sep 7, 2013
Bridgit Bowden / KBIA

 

Belief systems have a role in shaping the performance of teachers and principles – that’s what MU researcher Noelle Witherspoon-Arnold has found. According to Witherspoon-Arnold, educators with strong belief systems are more connected to their work and their students, and they are more likely to be social justice-oriented than educators without strong belief systems. But “belief system” doesn’t always mean religion – and whatever that system is, there are often tensions at play.

We sat down with her to find out more. Answers have been edited for length and clarity. 

Kellie Kotraba, Columbia Faith & Values / KBIA

This week, Columbia Faith & Values and its partner sites explored what happens when violence crosses thresholds in churches, synagogues and mosques. You can read the whole series on ColumbiaFAVS.com.

The story we bring you today takes us to Joplin. What happens when your worship space burns to the ground, and no one even knows who or what is at fault? How do you go on?

Courtesy MU Department of Health Psychology

What goes on in the brain during a spiritual experience?

The answers to that question are Brick Johnstone’s specialty.

Kellie Kotraba, Columbia Faith & Values / KBIA

When school begins on Wednesday at Our Lady of Lourdes Interparish School, students will meet a new principal – again. 

Since 2007, the school has gone through four principals. That makes Elaine Hassemer, the new principal, the fifth one in six years.

Heather Adams, Columbia Faith & Values

 

At 12 years old, Summer Davis was frustrated with the amount of weight she had gained.

“I started getting really annoyed and mad at myself for being overweight,” she said.

She began researching weight loss tips online when she stumbled across the website for a camp near St. Louis: Camp Jump Start, a weight loss camp for 10- to 18-year-olds. “I realized you have to work hard instead of taking a pill or doing some weird thing to lose weight fast – you have to actually work hard,” Davis said.

New Generation Singers take music to the road

Aug 3, 2013
Heather Adams, Columbia Faith & Values

 

The message of music is even more meaningful when it's taken on the road – at least, that's how the New Generation Singers see it. 

Altar'd State

Kayla Lewis was shopping at the Columbia Mall when she saw a new store that piqued her interest. The next week, she brought her mom along to shop at Altar’d State.

Altar’d State opened in the Columbia Mall July 5, bringing a touch of Christianity to shoppers.

“We wanted to swim upstream,” Altar'd State CEO Aaron Walters said. “The world was going one way, and we saw an opportunity to go another.”

Looking back: A year of faith & values news

Jul 26, 2013
Photo by Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

Columbia Faith & Values, the website behind KBIA's faith and values desk, just celebrated its first anniversary. We've put together some of the best sounds from our first year. 

Once your curiosity has been piqued by listening, take a look at the stories those sounds came from, in the order they were played. 

Kellie Kotraba, Columbia Faith & Values / KBIA

 

When Catholics used to abstain from eating meat every Friday, often eating fish instead, they earned a nickname: "mackerel snappers."

That practice has gone away – except during Lent, the season before Easter – and so has the nickname. 

 

But that nickname is now the title of a new book that seeks to explain often misunderstood teachings of Catholicism. 

 

The man behind the book is Spencer Allen, an apologist, husband, father of four and the principal of St. Joseph Cathedral School in Jefferson City. 

 

Interfaith gardens grow food and fellowship

Jul 12, 2013
Photo courtesy Lily Chan

 

Volunteers from different faith communities have been working together to grow food. Columbia has more than 30 community garden plots, and several of them are interfaith gardens. 

Monta Welch is the founder of a group called Interfaith Care for Creation, which has started an interfaith garden project in Columbia.  The goal of the program is to educate different faith communities about environmental stewardship, she said. 

Photo courtesy Columbia Public Schools.

When anyone asked Eliot Battle how he was doing, he would always answer, "Super."

Battle, a longtime Columbia educator, died Tuesday (June 11) from injuries sustained after a car crass Friday. He was 88. 

Battle had a key role in the desegregation of Columbia's public schools. And the new high school in town, Muriel Williams Battle High School, was named in honor of his wife, who died in 2003.

Kellie Kotraba/ColumbiaFAVS.com / KBIA

 

When Gavin Hooks' parents divorced, his Christian faith faded.

"I felt like God had left me, or I felt like my faith wasn't sufficient to work through this problem," he said. He didn't stop believe in God, but for about a year, he "dropped out" of his faith walk. 

Eventually, he returned. He'd worked through the issues of his parents' volatile split – or so he thought. 

Fast forward 20 years. Hooks' mother died, and he realized something: He still had deep issues that he hadn't dealt with. 

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