Morning Briefing

News:

As Tropical Storm Harvey pivots toward Louisiana today — and with least 30 dead in the Houston area — ​women religious are among those on the ground helping those affected. The head of the bishops' conference is calling for a special collection for storm recovery this weekend and next.

Catholic sisters and clergy were among the 5,000 ministers marching for justice in Washington D.C. yesterday, on the 54th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech. There's still much work to do, they say.

On the other coast, peace activists were part of the protest against racism in Berkeley, California.

Did you know the Vatican's Secretary of State made a historic visit to Russia last week? This analysis looks beyond the goodwill declarations to see whether it will really help the Catholic minority there.

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Also in Vatican news, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has been notably silent under Pope Francis, reports NCR's Vatican correspondent Joshua J. McElwee. Not that we're complaining. ...

If you think the flooding in Houston is bad, check out these pictures of extreme flooding in Nepal, India and Bangladesh. Warning: One features the body of a dead child whose family could not find any dry land to bury him.

Back in the U.S., court-watchers predict a contentious term when the U.S. Supreme Court takes up cases on discrimination versus the First Amendment, the immigration ban and and more. The new term begins in October. (This link requires registration but is free.)

Evangelical leaders released the so-called "Nashville Statement" yesterday, reasserting their opposition to gay marriage and calling homosexuality a sin. More progressive Protestants are responding.

Finally, former White House press secretary Sean Spicer finally got to meet the pope. Spicer, a Catholic who had expressed a desire to meet Pope Francis, had been snubbed by President Trump during the presidential trip to the Vatican in May.

Opinion

ICYMI: NCR's podcast "NCR in Conversation," is back for Season 2, with interviews about race relations. Catch up before the next episode drops on Friday.

The latest installment of Global Sisters Report's new series "The Life" features insights about networking from religious women around the world.

A review of Chris Lowney's book Everybody Leads says waiting for change in the church is not an option.

We started with natural disasters, so we'll end with another one: An American religion writer reflects on the suffering in Sierra Leone, where mudslides have killed at least 1,000 this month.


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