Your weekly TV dose of religion news

Since I have a bit of a TV theme going today, anyway…

I’ve been meaning to plug “Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly”: on PBS, a terrific, informative show that I never miss (which isn’t that big a deal, since my DVR records it automatically each week).

If you haven’t seen it, R&EN is a general interest, non-denominational program about what’s happening in the world of religion. It’s sense of even-handedness is almost old-fashioned. And their website includes resources for viewers and teachers.

The most recent show featured a well-researched report on Georgia’s extreme sex-offender law (it’s extreme in that it makes life very difficult for people who are not sex offenders). There was also a real fresh feature about African-American Jews trying to find their place in shul.

Each week, host Bob Abernethy goes over the religion headlines in a calm, almost respectful manner that is about as far as you can get from what passes as news anchoring today.

WNET, Channel 13, shows R&EN at 10:30 a.m. on Saturdays and 6:30 p.m. on Sundays (right before 60 Minutes).

This weekend’s show will feature reports on: religious opposition to “mountaintop removal mining” in Kentucky; Conservative Judaism’s decision to allow gay rabbis and same-sex couples; and a McDonald’s owner who offers live Gospel music to french-fry chomping customers.

Gary Stern

Gary Stern covered education in the Lower Hudson Valley for several years during the early 1990s. Now's he back on the beat. He believes that schools are one of the main reasons that people live around here and that educational issues -- from curriculum to financing -- are among the most challenging things that journalists can write about. He continues to be amazed by the complexity of educational jargon. Gary got his B.A. at SUNY Buffalo and his M.A. from the University of Missouri Journalism School (where his master's thesis was about the best ways to cover education). He lives in White Plains with his wife and two sons, who attend public schools.