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Photo: Niklaus Schillack, Church Relations Samaritas

Evangelical Lutheran Church, Clawson, Mich., passes water to Presiding

congregation in community service by distributing bottled water.

for a human trafficking exhibit and for its Café podcast; the ELCA won for a news release on the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

Women in religious leadership Of nine major U.S. religious organizations selected by the Pew Research Center, the ELCA and American Baptist Churches USA were the only with women currently in the governing body’s top leadership position. Previously the Episcopal Church and the United Methodist Church have had women in these positions. Each of these four

organizations has had a woman in the top position.

Lutheran Rams? The Los Angeles Rams will base training operations at California Lutheran University’s Thousand Oaks campus for at least two years. The football team will pay for, put in and use two practice fields, a paved parking lot and temporary modular buildings containing offices, training areas

and locker rooms while they wait for their permanent facility to be built. “We are thrilled to be part of the return of the Rams and NFL football to Los Angeles,” said Chris Kimball, university president. “The Rams are investing in a major remaining part of our plans for the north campus and providing internships in a variety of fields to our students. It will be a great partnership.”

Rejecting criticism An artist who converted an abandoned church in Spain into an indoor skateboarding park is defending the project against critics who consider it an act of desecration. While the skateboarding church garnered international attention and praise, the Madrid-based daily El Pais said it has also generated controversy. “During the public presentation of the finished paintings we met some old men who had worked in the church in the past, and they liked … the new life brought to the church,” said the artist, Okuda San Miguel.

Photo courtesy of Elchino Pomares

Talmud translation first of kind One of Judaism’s most central texts, the Talmud, was published in Italian for the first time in April. For five years, dozens of translators, researchers, historians and other experts worked on the historic translation of the Babylonian Talmud, a compendium of interpretation and commentary by ancient rabbis of the oral law believed to have been given by God to Moses at Mount Sinai. The Talmud, written over a period of about 600 years beginning in the first century, is the basis for rabbinical studies. A total of 36 tractates and 5,422 pages have been translated using new computer technology.

Sikh officer allowed turban Capt. Simratpal Singh, a decorated veteran Sikh officer,


Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton on April 3. Eaton was in Flint, Mich., to preach at Salem Lutheran in honor of its 100th anniversary and joined the

Distributing water in Flint Kenneth Fouty, pastor of Trinity

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