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Items of interest from various sources of religious news and opinion, in print and on the web.

Prominent Evangelical Leader Succumbs to COVID. Marcus Lamb, a prominent Christian broadcaster known for his outspoken opposition to COVID-19 vaccines, died on December 1 after contracting the virus. He was 64. Lamb was co-founder and CEO of the Daystar Television Network, a network popular with evangelical and charismatic Christians. His wife Joni announced the passing in a morning broadcast the same day. Smietana, Bob. “Marcus Lamb, anti-Covid vaccine Christian broadcaster, dies at 64.” Home>US., 1 Dec. 2021. Web. 1 Dec. 2021.

Marriage Matters. In the American Ideals series by the Washington Examiner, author Conn Carroll examines why the declining rate of marriage does not bode well for American society. “Decades of research has found that, after controlling for race and income, children born to married parents end up better educated, more likely to be employed, wealthier, and healthier than children born to unmarried parents. Marriage is also beneficial to the married spouses themselves. Even after controlling for income, married people are healthier, wealthier, and happier than their single counterparts. . . The most common modern alternative to marriage is cohabitation. As the number of married couples has fallen, the number of cohabiting adults has risen. Among adults ages 18 to 44, the share who have ever cohabited (59%) is now larger than the share who have ever been married (50%).” But marriage, Carroll points out, has benefits that cohabitation does not. “Cohabitation, despite its superficial similarities to marriage, offers far less relationship stability than marriage does. More than half of all cohabiting relationships end in breakups within just 12 months, and only 10% last longer than five years. The average marriage, in contrast, lasts almost 20 years, and nearly half of them last until death do them part.” Carroll, Conn. “Marriage matters.” American Ideals., 11 Oct. 2021. Web. 1 Dec. 2021.

Harvard Appoints an Atheist “Chaplain.” In August, venerable Harvard University, which has over thirty chaplains, named Greg Epstein as the new president of chaplains. Epstein, a self-described “humanist rabbi,” is an atheist, and author of the book, “Good Without God. “We don’t look to a god for answers,” Epstein told the New York Times in an interview. “We are each other’s answers.” At the time of its founding almost four hundred years ago, Harvard was a Christian seminary. Paumgarten, Nick. “Harvard’s Atheist-Chaplain Controversy.” Higher Power Dept., 11 Sep. 2021. Web. 1 Dec. 2021.