Among secular groups there is puzzlement and annoyance that government continues to 'pander' to weakened churches in areas like public service provision. This is because, says Jonathan Bartley, they have not grasped the mutual interests involved. These are as much a threat to the churches as an advantage.
Modern democratic politics is in danger of turning into a beauty contest and an electoral pantomime, says Simon Barrow. It needs reconnecting with people in civil society, changing institutions and the grassroots.
Ahead of a US Senate vote on the 2007 farm bill, churches across America have delivered local messages calling for access to locally grown food, guarantees farmers' access to conservation programmes, and respect for the environment.
The Economist has today (2 November 2007) published a special report which examines religion's place "in today's modern society" - the role it is likely to play in this century's politics and "how we should deal with it". But is it saying anything new?
A five-year campaign by human rights campaigners, including the Franciscan religious order, has influenced the Human Rights Council of the United Nations to has decide to appoint a Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery.
The United States Federal Bureau of Prisons has said it will return "non-approved" religious books and other materials that were removed from the shelves of federal prison libraries because of concerns over the threat of terrorism.
The key role of a long spiritual heritage of disciplined and creative non-violence should not be ignored as a factor in current attempts to overthrow brutal dictatorship in Burma, says Gene Stoltzfus, a founder of Christian Peacemaker Teams.