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July 23, 2014 | NPR · A number of major airlines have suspended service to and from Tel Aviv as the fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza intensifies. That's leaving passengers to find other arrangements.
 
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July 23, 2014 | NPR · Vice President Joe Biden has been traveling the country to learn about the best ways to train workers. He announced the results Tuesday as the president signed a workforce training bill into law.
 
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July 23, 2014 | NPR · Congress is supposed to hold U.S. spy agencies accountable. But as Edward Snowden's disclosures revealed, intelligence officials have not always provided a full or accurate picture.
 

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July 22, 2014 | NPR · Two weeks into the conflict in the Gaza Strip, more than 600 Palestinians — mostly civilians — and 29 Israelis have been killed. Two recent Israeli strikes, on a school and a hospital, reflect the scope of Israel's offensive.
 
July 22, 2014 | NPR · U.S. airlines have canceled flights to Israel after reports of Hamas rockets landing near Ben Gurion International Airport outside Tel Aviv.
 
July 22, 2014 | NPR · Secretary of State John Kerry has finished his first full day in Cairo, where he's trying to help forge a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
 

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July 19, 2014 | NPR · NPR's Scott Simon talks with David Herzsenhorn of The New York Times about the latest developments in Ukraine, where a Malaysia Airlines passenger plane was downed on Thursday, killing 298 people.
 

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July 20, 2014 | NPR · NPR's Arun Rath gets the latest from correspondent Corey Flintoff at the site of last week's downing of a Malaysian jetliner in Eastern Ukraine.
 

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Ecstatic Voices

Apr 18, 2014 — Life, death and piety are the recurring themes in hauntingly beautiful alabados preserved by lay brothers called penitentes. "You have to feel them," one says. "You have to feel them in your soul."
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Jan 3, 2014 — The mariachi Mass brings an ensemble of garishly dressed folk musicians — with their guitars, trumpets and violins — right down to the front of the church, where they play liturgical music.
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Dec 26, 2013 — Josh Garrels says his music tries to "peel back layers" of what it means to be a Christian. He says he's given away 153,000 digital copies of his breakout album, Love & War & The Sea in Between.
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Dec 5, 2013 — Can non-belief in God become a belief system itself? NPR's John Burnett has the story of the Texas indie band Quiet Company, who made a splash with a surprisingly positive album about frontman Taylor Muse's crisis of faith.
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Nov 7, 2013 — Kanniks Kannikeswaran writes groundbreaking Hindu sacred music and forms community choirs to perform it. "When a group of about 20 strangers get together and sing raga-based music with choral harmony for the first time," he says, "something magical begins to happen."
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Oct 27, 2013 — If it's Sunday in Houston, get ready to dance up and down the aisle at church. Zydeco music is the soundtrack to spirit-filled parties fueled by beer, boudin, and red beans and rice. It's a joyful continuation of a decades-old tradition.
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Oct 19, 2013 — The trumpeter and bandleader premiered his gospel-jazz Abyssinian Mass back in 2008. But now, accompanied by a 70-voice choir, he's taking the sprawling work on the road and into African-American churches — whose services were the inspiration for the piece.
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Oct 16, 2013 — The Modzitzer sect of Chasidic Judaism, which originated in the Polish town of Modzitz, is known for its beautiful melodies. Among the most emblematic and prolific composers in this tradition is Brooklynite Ben Zion Shenker — who, at 88, continues to create new works.
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Oct 15, 2013 — Hidden deep in the hills of Appalachia, there's a tradition of worship music that has not changed since the 18th century. The hymnody is still practiced by congregations of the Old Regular Baptist Church, where a leader calls out a line and the people respond in a mournful, soaring chorus.
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Sep 18, 2013 — For the Church of the Living God in Toccopola, Miss., the lap steel guitar channels the voice of God through hymns and improvised solos that mix gospel, blues and country.
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