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Bob Smietana

Bob Smietana is an award-winning reporter and Pulitzer grantee who has become one of the most respected and well-known religion reporters in the country, with more than two decades experience in covering religion, spirituality, and ethics. He has served as a senior writer for Facts & Trends, senior editor of Christianity Today, and the religion writer at The Tennessean. He is currently a national reporter for Religion News Service, where his wire service stories — which attract wide readership from lay people, pastors and scholars — have appeared in both secular and religious publications, such at the Washington Post, USA Today, Christianity Today, and the Associated Press.

His reporting on a small Episcopal church saved by refugees inspired the 2017 Affirm Films feature “All Saints,” while his reporting on young serpent handlers inspired the 2013 National Geographic television series Snake Salvation. In April 2021, his reporting on Beth Moore’s breakup with the Southern Baptists was a top story at Christianity Today and the second most read story at the Washington Post. On the day it was published, it was cited on the front page of the New York Times and prompted a national conversation about women in the Southern Baptist Convention. Bob has also reported on the troubles of Christian finance guru Dave Ramsey, the challenges facing megachurches like Willow Creek, end-times cat worshippers, and even a Nashville cult funded by “How Great is Our God,” one of the five most popular worship songs in the country, which attracted millions of page views and readers.

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