The head of the one billion-member Roman Catholic Church has hinted that he might make a three-day visit to the United States of America next year.
Pope Francis recently stated that he was hoping to visit the United States, home to an estimated 75 million Catholics, next year likely in autumn.
Britain's most popular baby boy name offers a revealing look into it's growing Muslim population. More than 8,000 boys born last year were named some variation of Muhammad. The United Kingdom's Office of National Statistics declared Oliver as the top pick of 2013 with 6,949 boys sporting the name. However a closer look at the complete list showed that parents selected several spellings of Muhammad for their sons, making the Muslim prophet's name more popular.
There are 18 variations of Muhammad featured on the 2013 list of baby boy names. The most common variations were Muhammad, with 3,499 namesakes, Mohammed,,with 2,887, and Mohammad, with 1,059.
This revelation is a reflection of the estimated 3 million Muslims now living in Great Britain. more >>
In a world where students are no longer allowed to speak freely on campus and are limited to designated "free speech zones," students still aren't safe to express their opinions.
Back in March, a feminist studies professor at University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) assaulted a 16 year-old pro-life activist who was displaying literature on campus. The professor, Mireille Miller-Young, called the pro-life group members "terrorists" after she stole their poster displaying graphic abortion images.
Let's be clear—the students had every right to be on campus educating their peers about a cause they are passionate about. The violence and intolerance that ensued from Professor Miller-Young was unacceptable. more >>
Much has been written about the impact of Michael Brown's death and the protests that followed. As I watched the story unfold, I just felt overwhelmed and unable to write. I really didn't have much to say. My embers of anger didn't stand a chance against the rising waters of numbness. It is my MO to go numb when things get too emotional, too hot-tempered, too violent. Sometimes this trait serves me well. My delayed reaction to the emotion in a room is often what makes me a great peacemaker- not because I am so special but because my emotions are often delayed in the moment. My grief, anger, and yes sometimes even the good emotions like joy come later. And so was the case this week. While article after article popped up explaining our hurt, giving voice to injustice, calling officials to action, teaching, prodding, crying, organizing- I was trying desperately to determine what I feel.
Many of you know that smaller stories unfolded even in the midst of the larger narrative. White Christians slow to respond (if at all) + the word "Christian" being used to define all Christians when in reality only referring to white ones + genuine calls for increased diversity and commitment to multi-ethnic churches... My TL was filled with branches stemming from the events in Ferguson. I've read some good stuff. I've read pieces that I'm jealous I didn't write and pieces I'm incredibly grateful folks put into words when I couldn't find any. But the one article that has stayed with me- clanging in my soul was an article posted by @feministajones, with a link to Playboys interview of MLK. There are a great many gems in this interview, and we all would do well to read it from beginning to end, but what I found most intriguing is MLK's response to the question about his mistakes as a civil rights leader. His reply: "Well, the most pervasive mistake I have made was in believing that because our cause was just, we could be sure that the white ministers of the South, once their Christian consciences were challenged, would rise to our aid. I felt that white ministers would take our cause to the white power structures. I ended up, of course, chastened and disillusioned."
At this moment in time, I cannot confess to the same shock, disappoint or hurt feelings that MLK describes. I've read too much, been at this too long to sincerely claim that I expected the white church to finally get it right in this present moment of Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, John Crawford and Michael Brown. The white church doesn't have a great track record on racial justice, and what's worse, displays very little shame on the matter. (As a quick caveat I will say that I am grateful for the friends of all races, including white who sent messages, wrote posts, shared in the outrage and amplified the voices of black folks- I just wish there were many, many more of you). On the whole the story of Michael Brown and the assault on Ferguson didn't gather the same level of attention of ISIS or Driscoll. Many of the white Christians who changed their profile pictures to stand in solidarity with Christians on the other side of the world, were absolutely silent while black Christians right here in America were in turmoil. more >>
A major pro-wrestling organization in the United States will be moving its flagship program to Wednesday evenings, after years of being on Thursday nights.
After years of being in the same weekly time slot, Total Nonstop Action announced last Thursday that its program, "Impact Wrestling," was going to air on Wednesdays beginning this week.
Police in Ferguson, MO arrested two journalists for covering the protests over their fatal shooting of an unarmed teenager six. Officers shoved Wesley Lowery, of The Washington Post, into a soda machine for taping them, before he was cuffed in plastic binds. A Ferguson officer rammed Ryan Grim's head against glass. The reporter for The Huffington Post wasn't packing up his reporting gear quickly enough. Both journalists' respective papers released statements condemning the Ferguson police, but the decline of free press reaches further than one town in Missouri.
Unfortunately state suppression of the press is hardly isolated to Ferguson. The problem goes all the way up to the White House, where the Obama Administration is preventing journalists from accurately reporting on policy.
According to The Society of Professional Journalists, the Obama Administration has engaged in "excessive message management and preventing journalists from getting information on behalf of citizens." The grievances were also supported by 37 other journalism and open government groups. The report details the use of "Public Information Officers," whose roles are to filter reports before they're available for mass consumption. Stories coming from the White House are trimmed and primed to perfection before the public can even get access to the latest information. more >>