General News

This coming Sunday at 10:30 am, Plymouth Congregational Church in South Minneapolis will present a unique worship service – one built around the musical and spoken word art form of hip hop. Plymouth’s Senior Minister James Gertmenian hopes bringing together a rapper, a band and a youth choir will strengthen the spirituality of those who attend, even while he recognizes that some parishioners may not immediately see the connection between hip hop and heaven.

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St. Paul’s oldest African American neighborhood is named after French Canadian fur trader Joseph Rondeau. After the civil war and during the reconstruction period in the south, many African Americans sought a better life and moved north. Some arrived in St. Paul, Minnesota, where jobs in the railroad and lumber industries were plentiful.

Starting a new life on Rondo Avenue, residents were entrepreneurs, opening businesses and catering to the local community. Bonds were formed and frienships developed. A tight-knit neighborhood committed to education and opportunity evolved. Families cared for themselves and each other.

Then in the 1960s, construction of Interstate 94 divided Rondo—shattering the community and displacing thousands of African Americans into a racially segregated city and discriminatory housing market. The highway radically changed the landscape, and erased a now-legendary neighborhood.

Rondo still exists and its persistence and growth are celebrated through events like Rondo Days and the Jazz Festival.

KFAI producer Allison Herrera explores this legendary community in an audio documentary, The History of Rondo, airing Wed, Feb 19, at 7:30pm on MinneCulure.

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Students around Minnesota have returned to school.  And for sixth graders, this year brings a new requirement – that they complete a full year of study of Minnesota history, civics, geography and economics.

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The incoming DFL chair of a House health-care committee says that the unionization of some in-home care workers could be good for them and for the state.

The Star Tribune reports that Representative Tina Liebling of Rochester, who will chair the House Health and Human Services Policy Committee, made the comments at the presentation of a report into the status of personal care assistants.

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It's estimated that more than forty thousand people in Minnesota provide home health care for elderly or disabled people.  Some of them have the power to form a union, but fifteen to twenty thousand of these Personal Care Assistants (PCA’s) work under the direction of the person receiving the health care.  And they can’t, by state law, organize or bargain for their wages. 

One of Minnesota’s largest unions wants to change that. 

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This time of year, it’s easy to enjoy the beauty of a Minnesota lake or park. But with Fall well underway, Minnesotans will increasingly retreat to the comforts of home.

But what happens when there is no home to return to?

The Minnesota Housing Partnership released a report last week showing homelessness on the rise in the Twin Cities, and we decided to speak with local agencies about what happens to the homeless population as temperatures continue to drop.

KFAI’s Allegra Oxborough has a report.

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Greg Owen of the Wilder Foundation talks about the latest survey of the Twin Cities homeless population, and Mikkel Beckmen of St. Stephens Human Services discusses his appointment to head the City of Minneapolis Office to End Homelessness and the county’s Heading Home Hennepin program.

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Representative Melissa Hortman is the House author of a bill to increase and stabilize transit funding in the Minnesota Legislature.

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Father Shannon Kearns leads the House of the Transfiguration – a congregation of the North American Old Catholic Church, He talks with KFAI’s Trisha Collopy on the Morning Blend.

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A bill to legalize same-sex marriage cleared a major hurdle on Tuesday when key House and Senate committees voted to move it forward. The votes came after a day of sometimes emotional testimony, with a few surprises, at the Capitol. 

KFAI’s Trisha Collopy has the story.

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