Clergy on the scene in Ferguson

From Huffington Post:  Following the grand jury’s decision not to indict Police Officer Darren Wilson for the shooting death of Michael Brown, thousands took to the streets in Ferguson, Missouri, and around the country to protest. As alternating scenes of peaceful demonstrations and those of violence, fire and looting were broadcast, Ferguson faith leaders repeatedly urged that the [Read More...]

Archbishop in Ferguson: “I implore each of you, choose peace!”

Last night, St. Louis Archbishop Robert Carlson was in Ferguson, to lead a prayer service at St. Teresa of Calcutta parish and pray with the people as the grand jury decision was announced. From The St. Louis Review:  “I implore each of you: Choose peace!” said Archbishop Carlson, who prayed at the memorial site for [Read More...]

Report: ISIS terrorist seen on video was once a “devout Catholic”

From The Independent:  The disturbing face of French “jihadism” has been revealed by a statistical survey and by the most recent, horrific video clip from Isis. The “face” is French or European, rather than Arab or North African. It belongs to a young man from a loving, non-religious family who has “self-converted” to extremist Islam [Read More...]

Winnie-the-Pooh, pervert

From The Independent:  Winnie the Pooh has been banned from a Polish playground because of his “dubious sexuality” and “inappropriate” dress. The much-loved animated bear was suggested at a local council meeting to decide which famous character should become the face of the play area in the small town of Tuszyn. But the idea soon [Read More...]

Miracle? Fire destroys church, but crucifix is discovered intact

Photo: Gary Reyes / Bay Area News Group Details: The morning after the spectacular fire, the Rev. Firmo Mantovani and bleary-eyed members of his parish were stunned by the wondrous sight inside the burned out shell of Holy Cross Catholic Church. “I can’t believe what I’m seeing,” said Sam Arlotta, a parishioner for all of [Read More...]

New survey explores why so many Latin Americans are leaving the Catholic Church

From the Pew Research Center:  Latin America is home to more than 425 million Catholics – nearly 40% of the world’s total Catholic population – and the Roman Catholic Church now has a Latin American pope for the first time in its history. Yet identification with Catholicism has declined throughout the region, according to a major [Read More...]

Great moments in democracy: Maryland school board removes religious holiday names from calendar

As someone who grew up in Montgomery County, I can only ask: what the—? Details:  Christmas and Easter have been stricken from next year’s school calendar in Montgomery County. So have Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah. Montgomery’s Board of Education voted 7 to 1 Tuesday to eliminate references to all religious holidays on the published [Read More...]

NY Times: “Change is rattling the hierarchy” under Francis

Fresh from the USCCB gathering in Baltimore: Change is rattling the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church, and the bishops here say they now feel it even if they do not yet understand where Pope Francis is leading them. The change is reflected not only in appointments — with the Chicago seat the main indicator [Read More...]

Exonerated: after 10 years, priest cleared of sex abuse allegations, restored to ministry

From AP:  A high-ranking Roman Catholic official has been exonerated of clergy sex abuse allegations by a Vatican tribunal after a decade of investigation and is once more considered a priest in good standing with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, church officials said Monday. The decision to reinstate Msgr. Richard Loomis is rare — particularly [Read More...]

Denied job, “humanist chaplain” sues Navy for discrimination

From RNS:  The Oxford-educated man who unsuccessfully sought to be the Navy’s first humanist chaplain is suing the Pentagon, claiming unconstitutional discrimination. Jason Heap is certified as a humanist celebrant by the Humanist Society, which joined in the suit and is challenging both the U.S. Navy and the Department of Defense for not recognizing the group as an endorser [Read More...]