Be sure to check out this terrific Beliefnet gallery from Mark I. Pinsky on the best Simpsons episodes about religions. It includes “Like Father, Like Clown” (written with the help of three rabbis, about Krusty the Clown’s exploration of his Jewish identity), “She of Little Faith,” where Lisa explores Buddhism with Richard Gere, and “The Father, the Son, and the Holy Guest Star,” with Liam Neeson as a priest.
I loved the brief scene in The Simpsons Movie when it looked like the world was ending and everyone from the church ran into a bar just as everyone in the bar ran into the church. Simpsons episodes have explored everything from end of days speculation to Genesis. And of course recurring character Ned Flanders is a gently joking — but ultimately respectful — portrayal of sincere faith and the kindness it inspires.