WEEK IN RELIGION

London’s historic Westminster Abbey won permission late last month to add its first new tower in roughly 300 years. Officials at the abbey’s museum say the addition will create public access to see artifacts housed in the church’s attic gallery, a space that was previously accessible only via a narrow spiral staircase and vertigo-inducing railless passages above the abbey’s nave. The new tower was designed by Ptolemy Dean, and it is expected to be completed by 2018.

SURVEY SAYS

Pew Research Center released the results of its latest annual study on global restrictions on religion last month. The poll showed that social hostilities involving religion declined somewhat in 2013 (27 percent) after reaching a six-year peak in 2012 (33 percent), but it also found that around a 25 percent of all countries are dealing with high levels of religious hostilities.

GOOD BOOK?

‘Rejoicing in Lament’ by J. Todd Billings

At the age of 39, Christian theologian Todd Billings was diagnosed with a rare form of incurable cancer. In the wake of that diagnosis, he began grappling with the hard theological questions we face in the midst of crisis: Why me? Why now? Where is God in all of this? This eloquently written book shares Billings’s journey, struggle, and reflections on providence, lament, and life in Christ in light of his illness, moving beyond pat answers toward hope in God’s promises.

— Brazos Press

THE WORD

dhikr: The remembrance of God, especially by chanting the names of God to induce alternative states of consciousness. Also sometimes spelled zikr. Pronounced “THIK-er.”

— ReligionStylebook.com

RELIGION AROUND THE WORLD

According to the CIA World Factbook, the religious makeup of the Netherlands is:

• Roman Catholic: 28 percent

• Protestant: 19 percent

• Other: 11 percent

• None: 42 percent

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