Columbia Faith and Values


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


10:45 am
Sat May 11, 2013

Porsha Williams shares challenges of Pagan conversion

Porsha Williams shared her faith conversion story with us.
Credit Photo courtesy Porsha Williams

Porsha Williams knows a thing or two about walls – metaphorical ones, that is. She’s been up against a lot of them, whether religious, psychological or cultural.

She describes herself as a “raised Christian, converted to Pagan woman.” And that conversion is the source of many of these walls.

Williams has always been intrigued with Kemeticism, an ancient Egyptian form of Paganism. But it wasn’t until about three and a half years ago that she decided to start practicing it.

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8:00 am
Sat May 4, 2013

LifeBridge Lutheran Church reaches “lost generation"

The congregation of LifeBridge Lutheran Church sings along to a worship song in the community building of Hanover Estates in Columbia, Mo. Sunday, April 21.
Evan Townsend/ KBIA

This story was produced in partnership with Columbia FAVS

The band of LifeBridge Lutheran Church practices in the community room of an apartment complex each Sunday morning before service begins. Furniture is piled in the corner to their left, and gym equipment in the corner to the right. Though they don’t have their own building to worship in, it’s progress for LifeBridge – a year ago, the church didn’t even exist.

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8:00 am
Sat April 27, 2013

Wagner's 'Die Meistersinger' reaches back to Reformation, forward to World War II

This story was produced in partnership with Columbia Faith & Values. Find more stories like this one at You can get instant updates each day on Facebook and Twitter.

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8:45 am
Sat April 20, 2013

Hans Neumann recalls days in Hitler Youth

Hans Neumann explains the map of his journey from his hometown in East Prussia to a group of eager cadets. “We travelled over 500 miles until we finally reached a stopping point near Kiel.” Neumann spoke about the devastated country he encountered along his path.
Credit Meredith Turk / KBIA

This story was produced in partnership with Columbia Faith & Values (

Hans Neumann was raised in a small, forested village in East Prussia, just five miles from the Lithuanian border. He was forced to leave his home at the age of 15, near the end of World War II. Germany was losing, and Russian troops were moving west. 

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8:00 am
Sat April 13, 2013

The power of story: Words from a Holocaust survivor and Gandhi's grandson

Romain-Roland Levi visited MU to speak about his memories of the Holocaust. He grew up in Belgium during World War II.
Credit Evan Townsend / KBIA

This segment was produced in partnership with Columbia Faith & Values. Find more news like this at 

Two people with remarkable stories to share came to MU this week, and we hear from both of them in this faith and values update. Romain-Roland Levi shared his experiences in Belgium during World War II, and Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson of Mohatma Gandhi, talked about his grandfather, along with the India-Pakistan conflict.

Holocaust survivor lives to spread love

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7:30 am
Sat April 6, 2013

Churches undergo stress before improvement with Healthy Church Initiative

Pastor Meg Hegemann and congregation members welcome new member John Flaim to Wilkes Boulevard First United Methodist Church in Columbia.
Kate Grumke/ KBIA

This story was produced in partnership with Columbia Faith & Values. Find more stories like this one at


On a Sunday morning at Wilkes Boulevard United Methodist Church in Columbia, about 30 people sing to welcome two new members to their congregation.

John Flaim is one of the newcomers. He came to Wilkes about five months ago.

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8:00 am
Sat March 30, 2013

Druid community works to form new church

Cicyfarth explains part of high day ritual as members of White Hawethorne Protogrove look on in Panera Bread Co. in Columbia, Mo. The group celebrates eight high days throughout the year, including the solstices and equinoxes.
Evan Townsend KBIA

Cicyfarth and four other members of the White Hawthorne Protogrove talk over food at a restaurant in downtown Columbia, planning their ritual to recognize the spring equinox.

These five have been meeting periodically for sandwiches and fellowship for nearly half a year. They are neo-druids, people who draw on a multitude of pantheons to find positive ethics, natural harmony, and spiritual connection. Since the fall of 2012, Cicyfarth and the others have been fighting to become a church.

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9:44 am
Sat March 23, 2013

Spirituality meets travel in William Claassen's “Journey Man”

In his new book "Journey Man: A World Calling," Columbia author William Claassen takes his readers around the globe.
Kellie Kotraba/ KBIA

This story was produced in partnership with Columbia Faith & Values. 

When the world called, William Claassen said "Yes." 

The Columbia author has hitchhiked across North America, worked on a kibbutz in Israel and 

He recently published his third book, "Journey Man: A World Calling." The book tells of his travels through nine countries on four continenets over a 30-years span.

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7:00 am
Sat March 16, 2013

Catholic youth respond to Pope Francis

Students, faculty and staff of Fr. Tolton Catholic High School threw a pope party on March 14, the day after Pope Francis was elected.
Kellie Kotraba/ KBIA

On Wednesday, the Cardinals of the Catholic church elected Jorge Mario Borgeglio of Argentina to be the new pope. He’s the first pope from South America, and the first from the Jesuit order of priests. He’s also the first to choose the name Francis.

We spent part of Wednesday and Thursay at Fr. Tolton Catholic High School in Columbia to find out what some of Columbia's young Catholics think of the new pope. 

Like many other people, Corrine Hubbard admires his humility.

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8:00 am
Sat March 2, 2013

'The Amen Corner' brings church challenges, life lessons to the stage

The cast of the MU production of James Baldwin's "The Amen Corner," directed by Clyde Ruffin.
FAVS photo courtesy Clyde Ruffin

Community and campus converge in the cast of MU's production of "The Amen Corner," a play by James Baldwin that finishes its run this weekend. 

The play tells the story of an African-American woman who starts a small storefront church in Harlem in 1965. She's recently migrated there from the south with her 18-year-old son, who plays the church piano.

But unbeknownst to the congregation, she has a secret past. She was once married to a jazz musician who was an alcoholic, but after their child died, she left him. His arrival one Sunday sends a scandal through the church. 

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8:00 am
Sat February 23, 2013

'After Tiller' delves into complex lives of third-trimester abortion doctors

Dr. Warren Hern meeting with a patient at his Boulder, Colo., clinic. From Martha Shane and Lana Wilson's 'After Tiller,' a documentary about the last four doctors in the US who provide third-trimester abortions.
Photo courtesy Lana Wilson and Martha Shane.

This story is part of True/False Conversations, a series of in-depth interviews with the filmmakers of this year’s True/False Festival.  Find the rest of them here or download the podcast on iTunes.

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8:00 am
Sat February 16, 2013

For female pastors, dating brings unique challenges

Amy Gearhardt and her husband, Mark Anderson, were married last year. Gearhardt is a pastor at Missouri United Methodist Church.
Photo courtesy Amy Gearhardt

In some Christian denominations, it’s getting more common to see women preaching from the pulpit on Sunday mornings. Still, it’s a slow cultural shift – some denominations don’t allow female pastors, and many churches that do are just getting female pastors for the first time. All that’s to say that being a clergy woman has its own set of challenges – and those challenges come into play on the dating scene. 

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8:00 am
Sat February 9, 2013

LISTEN: Researcher explores relationship between death, supernatural belief

Kenneth Vail is a researcher in the psychology department at MU. His recent research explores the connection between awareness of mortality and supernatural belief.
Kellie Kotraba/ColumbiaFAVS KBIA

Awareness of death can lead people to strengthen and defend their own religious beliefs, according to a recent psychological study led by MU researcher Kenneth Vail. 

And that doesn't just apply to those who believe in a higher power already.  

The foundation of Vail's researcg comes from the idea that part of the motivation for religious belief is the awareness of death – an idea that has deep philosophical roots, Vail said. Recent experimental research also points to the notion that people use belief to help manage awareness of mortality. 

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3:27 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Group protests MU's potential hire of former Guantanamo psychologist Larry James

Jeff Stack of the Mid-Missouri Fellowship of Reconciliation addresses Daniel Clay, dean of the College of Eduation, who came outside to respond to the protest of the possible hire of former Guantanamo psychologist Larry James.
Kellie Kotraba ColumbiaFAVS

About 40 protestors gathered today in response to MU's possible hire of Larry James, a former psychologist at Guantanamo Bay, for a high-ranking position in the College of Education.

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12:09 pm
Wed January 30, 2013

Midweek Missouri faith fix: Shoes, "Catholic" conflict and football

Note:  KBIA's faith and values desk is trying something new. Each week, we'll bring you a quick look at the religion news happening all over the state. Here's our first Midweek Missouri faith fix. 

On the Columbia faith front, there's quite a conversation going about faith in the workplace -- and a lot of "out" atheists have jumped right in.

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