Mao Zedong died in 1976, and since then, two big things have happened to China, says Giles Fraser. The first is the explosion of the economy. The other is the explosion of religion - and, sometimes, its suppression.
Celebrations marking Britain's best Olympic success in 100 years, with 19 gold medals, were marred by the fatal stabbing of an 18-year-old Londoner, adding to a knife-wielding trend that is worrying both church and government leaders.
Using the 2008 Olympics in Beijing as a platform, a US commission on religious freedom has called for increased international pressure on China to end its intolerance of religious expression - writes Cheryl Heckler for Ecumenical News International (ENI).