True Religious Stories

True Religious Stories:

Read about the religious, faith and spiritual experiences of real people with our Know It: True Religious Stories resource.

Tom Coburn

Life: Religion | Updated: Mon, Oct 27, 2008
RETIREMENT CENTER: Heather Hoffhines of Edmond discussed school nutrition with  Sen. Tom Coburn during a town hall meeting Wednesday at the Tealridge  Retirement Community in Edmond Wed. May  28, 2008. BY JOHN WILLIAMS, THE OKLAHOMAN. ORG XMIT: KOD

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn's schedule is always crammed, his weeks in Washington filled with the pressing issues of the day. When he goes to the First Baptist Church of Muskogee, “it's a time of relief and a shelter from a pretty windy storm. It's a period of mental rest and spiritual peace.”

Ann Dee Lee

Life: Religion | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2008
Ann Dee Lee

Ann Dee Lee was raised in the Jewish faith, surrounded mostly by Christians. “You grow up from the time you’re very little knowing that you’re different, and accepting that, and that you have different times of the year than everyone else to celebrate, to pray, to mourn,” Lee said. “There is an apartness, if there is such a word, that makes you realize that you are not a part of the mainstream.”

Women in the pulpit

Life: Religion | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2008
Rev. Thelma Chambers Young preaches to the congregation at Holy Temple Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, October 19, 2005. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

The Rev. Thelma Chambers-Young is used to people telling her women don’t belong in the pulpit and God would never call a woman to be a minister. She’s also used to people not using reverend when referring to her, even though they use the title with her male counterparts.

Faith issues on the job

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
Faith issues on the job

How are faith issues handled on the job? Faith is one thing, and religion another. Steve Trice, CEO of Jasco Products Co. in Oklahoma City said he lives his faith in God in the way he runs his company, and treats his employees.

The Hindu faith

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
For you Know it on religion  Photo taken  Tuesday, Sept.  16, 2008.  BY JIM BECKEL, THE OKLAHOMAN ORG XMIT: KOD

Minority faith communities are growing in Oklahoma, and the Hindu community has a larger presence since the opening of the Vedic Temple, 3048, N. Grand Blvd., one year ago. Roshini Nambiar, spiritual leader of the Vedic Temple, and board member of the Interfaith Alliance of Oklahoma, is actively involved with the temple, and the community.


Life: Religion | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2008
From left to right: Saad Mohammad, Islamic information officer for the
Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City; Razi Hashmi, executive
director of the Council on American Islamic Relations, Oklahoma City
chapter; and Imad Enchassi, imam of the Islamic Society of Greater
Oklahoma City at the OPUBCO studio, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2007. BY DOUG HOKE, THE OKLAHOMAN

Saad Mohammed feared the worst after the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Would his neighbors blame all Muslims for the misdeeds of an extremist few? Would Oklahomans turn against him and other members of the Islamic community? He needn’t have worried.

Nondenominational growth

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
Herbert Cooper, senior pastor of People's Church, blogs from Starbucks at 122nd and Pennsylvania in Oklahoma City, Okla., Monday, May 14, 2007. Photo by Paul Hellstern / The Oklahoman. ORG XMIT: KOD

Leaders of Oklahoma City’s Crossings Community Church didn’t set out to create a huge church. “It’s staggering. We didn’t set out to do that at all,” said Marty Grubbs, senior pastor at Crossings, where worship attendance has tripled from about 1,500 nine years ago to 4,500 today.

Leroy Looper

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
Southern Baptist minister Leroy Looper. Photo Provided

NINNEKAH — For 58 years, Southern Baptist minister Leroy Looper has been preaching God’s message of salvation through Jesus. Looper, 82, continues to preach from the pulpit most Sundays as a fill-in at churches near his Byars home. He is the interim pastor at Ninnekah Baptist Church in Grady County.

Diversity in the religious community

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
Rev. Jeff Hamilton, President, Interfaith Alliance of OKC speaks Thurday, May 1, 2008 at the State Capitol during the Interfaith Day of Prayer and Reflection on the south steps. BY JACONNA AGUIRRE/THE OKLAHOMAN.

Oklahoma City has a rich and diverse religious community that religious leaders say merits exploring. But before anyone embarks on a religious journey, they should be sure to have a patient, open mind, leaders say. Imad Enchassi, imam of the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City, said anyone looking to find out about their neighbor’s religion first should nix any preconceived ideas about other faith traditions.

Colleges and universities with religious affiliations

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
ORU: The large praying hands at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla. Nov. 28, 2007.  BY STEVE GOOCH, THE OKLAHOMAN.  ORG XMIT: KOD

Oklahoma has a variety of colleges and universities with religious affiliations, or with religion as a foundation, according to school officials or their Web sites.

Minority faith

Life: Religion | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2008
Minority faith

Sometimes one question leads two people in two directions. Sometimes the answers are the same. In this case, there’s an overlap.

Religion and spirituality in Oklahoma

Life: Religion | Published: Sat, Oct 25, 2008

Oklahomans have seen religion-related issues heat up the headlines: “Edmond cuts ties with Jesus statue.” “Activists say religion should be used to fight anti-homosexual beliefs instead of sustain them.” “17 state lawmakers refuse Quran gifts.” “Immigration: As new law’s effects are felt, church members are asked to continue attending.”

Whatever happened to ...?

Life: Religion | Published: Sat, Oct 25, 2008

Have you ever wondered what happened to a ministry leader, or a mover and shaker in the faith community? Are you curious about a certain preacher — once high profile — but now off the news radar? Send us names of the faith leaders you want to know about. We'll attempt to track them down, or obtain information about where they are now for a future story.

Religious music

Life: Religion | Updated: Sun, Oct 26, 2008

People are passionate about their music and church music is no exception. From the traditional hymns like “Amazing Grace” to contemporary selections like Rich Mullin’s “How Great is Our God,” music is an integral part of many church worship services. How that music is presented and incorporated into the worship experience can depend on many things.

Clergy express fear of unknown

Life: Religion | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2008

Fear of breaking the rules of separation between church and state at times can keep churches and schools from coming together for students. But Oklahoma religious leaders who participated earlier this year in the Educators and Clergy Conference in Norman said they were taking the initiative to aid neighboring public schools.

Growing up divided

Life: Religion | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2008

Some might think that growing up in a household that included more than one religion would be difficult. But for Attallah Harris, 22, of Oklahoma City, having two religions in the house was just something she was used to. Her mother attended Catholic and Protestant churches while her father went to Protestant churches.

Faith in the workplace

Life: Religion | Published: Sat, Oct 25, 2008

Religion in the workplace can be a touchy subject. In fact, it can be very unsettling, but the Oklahoma Business Ethics Consortium and Oklahoma City University are bringing the topic to the forefront.

Bombing shaped Muslim organization

Life: Religion | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2008

His fledgling Council on American-Islamic Relations was less than a year old in April 1995 when co-founder Nihad Awad, received an urgent telephone call from Oklahoma City.

Billy Graham

Life: Religion | Published: Sat, Oct 25, 2008

Evangelist Billy Graham is to celebrate his 90th birthday on Nov. 7. The renowned faith leader, dubbed “America’s preacher,” is loved and respected by many Oklahomans. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has created a Web site,, where people can share their personal memories of the evangelist and even send him birthday greetings.


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