While Asheville thrives on a diverse spiritual life, shifting demographics and evolving notions of religion’s role in daily life have many historic congregations reconsidering the part they play in local culture — and how best to address a changing community’s concerns.
In a town where tourists come for the food, people who live on the margins of society often feel unwelcome in restaurants, even if they have the money to pay for a meal. But at 12 Baskets Café, they are welcome and valued.
A determined and inspirited contingent of Asheville’s faith community made itself heard last Monday, May 20, when over 20 faith leaders held a press conference at the foot of the courthouse steps to speak out against a plethora of laws that are being proposed and passed by the North Carolina General Assembly this year.
At a time when growing numbers of Americans have abandoned traditional religion, Asheville residents still fill the pews in Church Street’s three historic sanctuaries every Sunday. Clergy from Central United Methodist, First Presbyterian and Trinity Episcopal tell Xpress how they’re responding to sweeping spiritual change. (Cover design by Emily Busey)