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U.S. churches are again defying federal immigration authorities. Across the country, a handful of congregations are opening their doors to offer safe haven to Central American immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally and are under deportation orders.

The new sanctuary movement echoes an earlier civil disobedience campaign by churches in the 1980s.

The newest church in America to openly challenge federal immigration laws is St. Andrew's Presbyterian in Austin, Texas. Ten days ago, the congregation took in Hilda and Ivan Ramirez, a Guatemalan mother and her 9-year-old son.

The new novel from Mexican writer Álvaro Enrigue is full of characters you'd recognize, among them Mary Magdalene, the painter Caravaggio and Henry VIII's wife, Anne Boleyn. The book, Sudden Death, begins with a tennis match between Caravaggio and Spanish poet Francisco de Quevedo, played with a ball made from Boleyn's hair. The match is a metaphor for history's imperial forces.

"That's the privilege of the novelist," Enrigue tells NPR's Ari Shapiro. "You can do whatever you want with historical characters."

Japan is venturing further into the terra incognito of negative interest rates, selling a 10-year government bond that actually costs its purchasers money over time.

In doing so, it joins a handful of European countries that have also lowered rates below zero.

The yield on the 10-year note sold by the Bank of Japan dipped to an unprecedented level of negative .05 percent, meaning that anyone who buys it will lose money.

The international trade in exotic animal parts includes rhino horn, seahorses, and bear gall bladders. But perhaps none is as strange as the swim bladder from a giant Mexican fish called the totoaba.

The totoaba can grow to the size of a football player. It lives only in the Gulf of California in Mexico, along with the world's smallest and rarest mammal — a type of porpoise called the vaquita.

When Carolyn Coyne's lab at the University of Pittsburgh recently tried to order a sample of Zika virus from a major laboratory supplier, they were told it was out of stock.

"They are actually back-ordered until July for the virus," Coyne says. "At least that's what we were told." She ended up obtaining Zika from another source, and it arrived at her lab Tuesday.

Music Review: 'The Traveller,' Baaba Maal

22 hours ago
Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "FULANI ROCK")

BAABA MAAL: (Singing in foreign language).

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Chess Wars: 20 Inmates, 5 Weeks, 1 Champion

23 hours ago

In a prison hidden in the woods of Berlin, N.H., a group of 20 players are ready to compete for a chess tournament. They will sit in a windowless room engaged in a battle of the mind every Wednesday for five weeks — and one will be crowned the best player.

There are no prizes or trophies, merely a paper certificate for the winner, but for the inmates in this relatively isolated facility, the championship is a big deal.

Julia Holter On World Cafe

23 hours ago

Los Angeles multi-instrumentalist Julia Holter attended a performing-arts high school before studying electronic music at California Institute of the Arts. Though Holter's music is often experimental, her new album, Have You In My Wilderness, is widely viewed as her most accessible work. She says she becomes another character when she writes, and she often draws inspiration for her songs from literature and plays.

Craig Finn On Mountain Stage

23 hours ago

Craig Finn makes his first solo appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. Perhaps best known as the frontman of The Hold Steady, Finn does occasionally step out on his own to examine a different side of his songwriting.

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