Bob Smietana

Bob Smietana is senior writer for Nashville-based "Facts & Trends" magazine ( and president of the Religion Newswriters Association. He's covered religion for a living since 1999.

Stories by Bob Smietana

The Spiritual Power of Thor

Modern-day Heathens take the Norse gods seriously — and their numbers are on the rise.

The 10 Best Pope Francis Moments (So Far)

The Pope Francis era’s greatest hits.

The Power of Showing Up

Take one last lesson from the late Tom Magliozzi, co-host of NPR’s popular show Car Talk.

Why I’m Absolutely Not Islamophobic

A Presbyterian minister calling Christians to wage war against our Muslim neighbors has Jesus all wrong.

How My Diabetes Diagnosis Taught Me to Run

I had to start exercising so that I wouldn’t die. But the threat of death turned out to be the wrong motivation.

You Might Want to Fact-Check Your Pastor’s Sermon

Preachers love to drop statistics and historical tidbits into their sermons. Too bad so many of their facts are untrue.

Are Millennials Really Leaving the Church? Yes — but Mostly White Millennials 

All the hand-wringing stories about young adults leaving religion overlooks the vibrancy and growth of multiethnic churches.