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A new Pew Research study has some interesting findings on some very surprising trend reversals over the past few years, and maybe the most curious findings involve American perceptions on faith and politics.

Back in 2010, research indicated that fewer Americans were interested in mixing faith and political issues. Today, that's changing. 49 percent of Americans say they want houses of worship to “express their views on day-to-day social and political issues." That's up six percentage points since 2010. 41 percent of Americans say politicians show “too little expression of religious faith and prayer,” which is a four percent increase over 2010. Perhaps most surprising: 32 percent of Americans say they want clergy to endorse candidates from the pulpit. That's an eight percent jump from 2010, but it's still a long way from the majority. Nearly twice as many don't want their religious leaders weighing in on who to vote for ... Discuss

Hillsong United's 'Oceans' has become a new worship staple, and as is the case with new staples, artists are lining up to give their own spin on it. Some are more successful than others, but this hero drummer gives it his all, and we think you'll agree it's just the manic shot of energy the song needs. Some people might call it "overpowering" but, then again, some people called Galileo insane. Play on, hero drummer ... Discuss

In truly sad, infuriating news, the Iranian government has sentenced the young men and women in the YouTube video below to six months in jail and 91 lashes for dancing to Pharrell's "Happy." Tehran's chief of police has reportedly called the video, "a vulgar clip which hurt public chastity" ... Discuss

The Satanic Temple continues to mine the worst tricks from church subculture in what is either a misguided effort to win new followers or an attempt at parody. In either case, they're capitalizing on an Orange County ruling last year that allows religious adherents to hand out pamphlets at schools. The ruling came at the behest of a Christian group called The World Changers of Florida, but cracked the door for the Satanic Temple to distribute their own literature. And children's Satanic literature is, as you might expect, interesting. As with a lot of material from the Satanic Temple, it's not entirely clear how much is genuine and how much is tongue-in-cheek, but don't expect kids to be able to tell the difference either ... Discuss

According to new research from Duke University’s Mark Chaves, several kinds of Christian worship experiences—including speaking in tongues—are on the rise among American churchgoers. As The Atlantic explains:

Since Chaves and his team started tracking these trends in 1998, the portion of congregations that see hand-waving during services has increased by 11 percentage points; spontaneous jumping, shouting, or singing has increased by 9 percentage points; and speaking in tongues has increased by 5 percentage points.

Commenting on his National Congregations Study, Chaves told the outlet that the current trend in American religion is for worship and church experiences that are “more emotionally engaging, not just intellectually engaging” ... Discuss

Last Friday, we put together a list of ideas for your next Christian tattoo, and a few ideas to avoid. It was all in good fun, but that was last Friday, and the game done changed. We don't know much about who has this exquisite Pope Francis tattoo but, according to Tumblr, he's a Dallas resident named Ash with an affection for Doctor Who, Sherlock and killer tattoos. Ash, we aficionados of great Christian tattoos salute you ... Discuss

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