Politics and law:

  1. Judge faults Marsh for citing Bible | A day after attorneys in a sex abuse case agreed that Common Pleas Court Judge Melba Marsh's devout religious beliefs wouldn't affect her presiding over the case, a federal court ruled the judge's religious beliefs were improperly used in 1998 to send a child rapist to prison for 51 years (The Cincinnati Post)

  2. Also: Marsh says religion important part of life | While Judge Melba Marsh wouldn't talk Wednesday about a federal court reversing a ruling in which she used the Bible to sentence a child rapist, she has weighed in on the issue before (The Cincinnati Post)

  3. Also: Ruling based on religion tossed | Rape sentencing sent to new judge (The Cincinnati Enquirer)

  4. Tapping into White House vision | Experienced organizations have an advantage in winning government funding, but a faith-based initiative program may help even the odds (Chicago Tribune)

  5. Turner to pray again at council meetings | His decision challenges ACLU's position (The Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, Va.)

  6. Judge blocks new Missouri abortion law | Law would have required a 24-hour waiting period for abortions (Associated Press)

  7. Amish want labor laws for teens relaxed | An Amish group asked lawmakers Wednesday to relax federal labor laws that prohibit teenagers from working near powerful woodworking machines ? rules they said threaten a cornerstone of their culture (Associated Press)

  8. Why are soldiers treated differently? | Islamist Fifth Columnists are benefiting from the very guarantees of religious freedom being denied to devout Christian soldiers (Michelle Malkin, The Miami Herald)

  9. EU-wide petition for Christianity in Constitution | Following the beginning of the intergovernmental conference to finalize the draft Constitution, a campaign has been launched all over Europe for a reference to Europe's Christian heritage to be explicitly mentioned in the text (EU Observer)

First Amendment:

  1. Ovadal's beach rant ruled unconstitutional | A minister crossed the line of constitutionally protected free speech in a confrontation with a woman who had gone to a southern Wisconsin beach that allows nude sunbathing, a state appeals court ruled Tuesday (Associated Press)

  2. Campaign-finance, theology cases to be watched closely | Among the nearly 50 cases the Court has already docketed for the coming term, only two are direct First Amendment cases (Tony Mauro, First Amendment Center)

  3. Song raises ire of local atheist | Sherman threatening lawsuit (Wheeling Countryside, Ill.)

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Marriage laws:

  1. Till the divorce law becomes legal | What have Malta, the Philippines, and Chile got in common? (BBC)

  2. Gay-marriage foes lose fight | Top court turns down their appeal bid; religious, family groups undaunted (The Toronto Star)

  3. Also: Same-sex appeal refused (Canadian Press)

Religious displays:

  1. Commandments monument is testament to states' rights | Folks can loathe Judge Roy Moore or love him, but no one should believe that we're dealing with some backwoods hick (Gregory Kane, The Baltimore Sun)

  2. Ten Commandments debate may arise | Lawmaker wants state to affirm it as vital to government (Dayton Daily News, Oh.)

  3. 500 rally for Commandments | Threatening skies did not deter demonstrators to show their resolve against a lawsuit to remove a framed copy of the Ten Commandments from the Habersham County Courthouse (The Gainesville Times, Fla.)

  4. Lawyer: City would lose legal fight | A First Amendment expert in Laramie said the city of Casper would lose if its officials decide to fight in court to keep a controversial Ten Commandments monument in City Park (Casper Star-Tribune, Wy.)

  5. Three seek to enter Bible suit | Group opposes removal of book outside courts building (Houston Chronicle)

  6. Family protests plaque | Victim's relatives don't want racial reconciliation display in courthouse (Chronicle-Tribune, Grant County, Ind.)

Mark Paschall's rules for jurors:

  1. Juror 'rule book' raises alarm | Jefferson County Treasurer Mark Paschall will continue distributing booklets that urge jurors to consider religious teachings in reaching their verdicts, even if he has to take county commissioners to court (Rocky Mountain News)

  2. Rights group: 'Extremism' behind Jeffco official's guide | Anti-Defamation League protests (The Denver Post)

  3. Paschall pamphlets shameful | Elected officials like Paschall and Baker are the reason the recall process is written into the Colorado Constitution (Editorial, The Denver Post)


  1. Funeral for slain pastor to be Friday | More than 100 people gathered Thursday night to remember the Rev. Johnny C. Reynolds at a small Kirkwood church a block from the sanctuary where the revered pastor was gunned down by a member of his flock (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

  2. Differing impressions of priest charged in obscene-call case | Faces eight counts of second-degree aggravated harassment and one count of second-degree harassment, all misdemeanors (The New York Times)

  3. Pope decries 'scandalous' clergy behavior | "The scandalous behavior of a few has undermined the credibility of many," he said in English in an address to Philippine bishops. (The Washington Times)

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  1. Priest quits in porn case | A former Cambria County priest resigned yesterday after being charged by the FBI with Internet pornography involving young boys (The Tribune-Democrat, Johnstown, Pa.)

Religious liberty abroad:

  1. Turkmenistan: Survey reports on lack of religious freedom | A new report on religion in Turkmenistan shows a complete lack of freedom to practice any faiths except for Sunni Islam and Russian Orthodox Christianity. All of the country's other religious communities are de facto banned and their activities punishable (Radio Free Europe)

  2. Proposed cow slaughter ban stirs discord in India | Many Muslims and Christians are opposed to a bill pushed by Hindu nationalists (Los Angeles Times)


  1. Dangerous religion | George W. Bush's theology of empire (Jim Wallis, Sojourners)

  2. Archbishop reflects on cost of war | The Archbishop of Canterbury has warned that the US and UK will be "held to account" over Iraq, at a remembrance service for those who died in the war (BBC, video)

  3. Nurse describes life in Iraq since U.S. attack | Haynes: Fear of religious persecution, attacks on women now common (Juneau Empire, Ak.)

  4. Sacred Mysteries: Iraq's Chaldean Christians | Bishops want recognition of Chaldeans at least as an ethnic group (Christopher Howse, The Daily Telegraph, London)

Missions and ministry:

  1. On this they do agree | Evangelicals take the lead in human-rights activism (Allen D. Hertzke, The Wall Street Journal)

  2. Religious groups aid flooded residents | Interfaith disaster relief organizations are forming to help flood victims who have exhausted known local resources (St. Petersburg Times, Fla.)

Anglican troubles:

  1. Anglican bishop disciplined for opposition to gay union blessings | The Anglican bishop for the Yukon could be suspended or removed for challenging the authority of Vancouver Bishop Michael Ingham in a dispute over same-sex blessings, says the top Anglican church leader in British Columbia and the Yukon (Associated Press)

  2. Episcopal group asks rebuke over gay bishop (The Birmingham News, Ala.)

  3. Episcopalians seek help | Conservatives want Anglican leadership to rein in U.S. church (The Rocky Mountain News, Den.)

  4. Top Anglicans warn against divisive talk | Five of the top Anglicans in Canada have warned conservative Christian activists inside and outside the country to stop fomenting division in the Canadian church over the homosexuality issue (The Vancouver Sun)

  5. Primate seeks study of gay bishop issue | Wants commission, not ousting (Associated Press)

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  1. Vatican eggs on Anglican split in US | Cardinal praises conference planning break over gay bishop (The Guardian, London)

  2. National spotlight again turns toward local church | David Roseberry, who quit his post at the convention to demonstrate his disapproval of the outcome of the election, has become a lightning rod of opposition to what he sees as the Church condoning immoral behavior (Plano Star Courier, Tex.)

  3. Dissident Episcopalians call for action | Like an angry Old Testament prophet, the Rev. David Anderson raised a wooden staff before the crowd of 2,000 dissident Episcopalians in a Dallas hotel ballroom Thursday (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

  4. Pa. Episcopal priest stripped of his priesthood | An Episcopal priest has been defrocked following his conviction in a church court on charges of immorality and unbecoming conduct toward two teenagers (Associated Press)

  5. Battles over homosexuality may await other denominations (Plano Star Courier, Tex.)


  1. Amid all the horror of devastation caused by Aids, there's reason to celebrate | Among us are thousands of saints, living with such compassion that it takes one's breath away (Cape Times, South Africa)

  2. Vatican: Condoms don't stop AIDS | A senior Vatican spokesman backs the claims about permeable condoms, despite assurances by the World Health Organisation that they are untrue (The Guardian, London)

  3. Also: Vatican in HIV condom row | The Catholic Church has been accused of telling people in countries with high rates of HIV that condoms do not protect against the deadly virus (BBC)


  1. Hollywood's Luther | From 95 Theses to 112 silver-screen minutes (Thomas Hibbs, National Review Online)

  2. Will movie spark talk of Christian values? | Would Jack Chick's views dissuade you from seeing his film or screening it for your congregation? Religious leaders respond (Los Angeles Times)

  3. Spreading the 'Light' | Chick Publications produces film showing paintings of biblical events (San Bernardino County Sun, Calif.)


  1. Chief seeks to ease ITV's religious burden | Nigel Pickard, director of programmes since February, said the channel's annual commitment to 104 hours of religious programming may be "too much" in an increasingly competitive environment (The Guardian, London)

  2. FCC gives Bono a pass on cursing at awards | When it comes to cursing, the government says, it's all in the delivery (Associated Press)

  3. Falsani Fridays: God, Bono, the Cardinal, and the Cubs | Cathleen Falsani manages to be silly, humorous, thoughtful, intelligent, and spiritual (Chicago)

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  1. Executives fine-tune KOCE bid | Business leaders who hope to save O.C.'s PBS affiliate sweeten their offer, the lowest of five (Los Angeles Times)

  2. Also: Foundation makes new, higher bid | Nonprofit group boosts its bid for KOCE with the help of local business leaders and Peter Ueberroth (Daily Pilot, Newport Beach, Calif.)

  3. Also: It's KOCE decision time | Bidding has closed and the Coast Community College District board must decide by Wednesday who will take over Orange County's public television station (The Independent, Huntington Beach, Calif.)

  4. Also: Foundation's bid should win | In a county as well off as Orange County, saving the sole local television station, the only source of local news programming, should not be so difficult (Editorial, The Independent, Huntington Beach, Calif.)

Church life:

  1. Religion Today: 'Emerging' churches | Consisting largely of younger Christians, emergent churches cut across denominational lines in an effort to reclaim the sense of mystery found in the ritual and symbols of the faith's ancient past (Associated Press)

  2. DuPage forest district seeks church's land | A proposed 160-unit upscale town home development on church-owned property in Aurora has come under fire from the DuPage County Forest Preserve District, which seeks to acquire the land for its own use (Chicago Tribune)

  3. Harlem church needs saving | From what I can tell, this is but another example of black people being sold out by those who supposedly represent their interests (Stanley Crouch, New York Daily News)

  4. Vicar tells of hate campaign by 'vampires' | The two men, plus a 19-year-old woman, are accused of religious harassment of a Christian. They are believed to be the first to face the little-known charge (The Daily Telegraph, London)

  5. Also: Vampire fans 'harassed vicar' (BBC)

  6. Also: 'Vampire-obsessed men targeted vicar's family' | Two men obsessed with vampires waged a three-month religious harassment campaign against a vicar and his family, a court heard today (PA News, U.K.)

  7. Heaven's angels | Each service consists of 20 minutes of rock-worship music and dancing, a short message, and 20 minutes of social interaction (over light snacks and dessert) (Santa Cruz Sentinel, Calif.)

  8. Renaming Calif. parish sparks dispute | Construction of a multimillion-dollar Roman Catholic church named for Vietnam's patron saint has been delayed indefinitely because of a dispute over who should be pastor of a congregation that is now mostly Hispanic (Associated Press)

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  1. Amish seek help from machines after storm | Amish bishops can be flexible on rules about electricity and other modern conveniences, especially involving medical or other emergencies (Associated Press)

  2. Portable religious beliefs | Expats face faith challenges (Sofia Echo, Bulgaria)

Pat Robertson:

  1. Pat Robertson's 'nuke' idea draws protest | State Dept. spokesman: 'Idea is despicable' (CNN)

  2. Also: State department protests televangelist's remark (Reuters)

  3. Robertson out on a Limb-augh | TV preacher Pat Robertson pulled a Rush Limbaugh move yesterday when he tried to defend the embattled right-winger-and wound up insulting actor Morgan Freeman (New York Daily News)

Jonathan Edwards:

  1. Is Jonathan Edwards history? | The contested legacy of the great Puritan?and what it tells us about religion in America today. (John Wilson, Beliefnet)

  2. Hell, yes | There's more to Jonathan Edwards than "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God." (Editorial, The Wall Street Journal)

Other stories of interest:

  1. Group seeks license to go fishing for finality | Expect Dead Sea to flourish according to biblical prophecy (Cape Times, South Africa)

  2. The tyranny of yoga | Women spend £670m a year on yoga and other holistic treats - this boom in "spiritual spending" has sparked a rush among advertisers to appeal to those seeking well-being (BBC)

  3. Unifying the spirit and the intellect | Students receiving classical Christian educations at two Lakeland schools (The Ledger, Lakeland, Fla.)

  4. Christianity takes on old, new face | While a birth dearth has stagnated Christianity's growth in wealthy Western industrialized nations, Christianity is seeing radical, revolutionary growth in Africa, South America and Asia (J.D. Mullane, Bucks County Courier Times, Pa.)

  5. Guidance, support are a matter of faith | Religion still plays important role for many African Americans (The Ann Arbor News, Mich.)

  6. When members of another faith teach at a religious school | The seminary professor hears the titters at the start of every semester: What is a nice Jewish girl like you doing in a Christian seminary like this? (The New York Times)

  7. America obsessed with future apocalypse | There is no work in all literature that has been more misunderstood, prostituted, exploited and abused than the Bible's final book, titled simply in the Greek, "Apocalypse of John." (Tom Harpur, The Toronto Star)

  8. Trouble in the pastor's house | In his first week as an Arizona church's pastor, John Vawter learned that his adult daughter was addicted to heroin (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)

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  1. Holding the Bible by day, seeking oracles by night | Events cast doubt as to whether the faith has really stamped its authority on the lives of the people (Joseph K'amolo, African Church Information Service)

  2. Ethiopia recovers looted manuscript 135 years on | An ancient handwritten Book of Psalms taken from the fortress of Ethiopian Emperor Theodros by British troops 135 years ago was returned to the Horn of Africa country on Monday (Reuters)

  3. Is it okay to pray for the Cubs? | Priests, rabbis, historians, theologians, and ministers respond (Chicago Tribune)

  4. Son of a preacher man | Mark Curtis Anderson's '70s memoir looks at what happened when white evangelicals first embraced the devil's music (City Pages, Minneapolis)

  5. Pagan, Christian debate continues | Religious debate returned to Sylva last week as a local Baptist preacher and pagan high priestess traded volleys during an Oct. 2 meeting of Sylva's town board (The Sylva Herald, N.C.)

  6. Religion news in brief | NCC gets financially healthier, North Carolina Baptists expel church, and other stories (Associated Press)

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