NPR is developing a new talk show called Rough Cuts.Â They’ve been producing segments, making those segments available, and asking for feedback.Â This week, there was a terrific segment on religious conversion:
So when I read that this is the most religiously diverse Congress in history, I immediately had to check. It turns out that it is true.
You probably heard about the fact that for the first time, a Muslim is serving in the U.S. Congress … that would be Keith Ellison (D-Mich.). He is an African-American convert. But there are also two Buddhists, one of whom, Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), is also an African-American convert.
That’s why we invited three people who have converted or who are in the process of converting to a new religion, to talk about their experiences with us. Cheryle Bryant is an African-American woman who is studying Orthodox Judaism. Farhanahz Ellis, who is of Panamanian-American heritage, has been a Muslim for 13 years. And Darshan-Kaur Khalsa, who is white, was raised in the Protestant tradition and she and her husband embraced Sikhism more than 30 years ago.
The show examines issues of race and their relationship to religion, as well as allowing three religious people to speak frankly and honestly about their spiritual paths.Â You can listen to the segment and provide feedback here.