The Roman Catholic Church in the U.S. is increasing pressure on lawmakers to adopt immigration reform and is taking that message to the pews, planning for a major coordinated event for Sunday Masses on Sept. 8.
"We want to try to pull out all the stops," said Kevin Appleby, the director of migration policy at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, according to The New York Times. "They have to hear the message that we want this done, and if you're not successful during the summer, you're not going to win by the end of the year."
Lawmakers have yet to decide on substantial changes to the path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants, but a number of evangelical churches and groups, along with Catholics, have made it a prime focus in their mission this past year. more >>
A British sociologist has denounced a recent effort by the United Kingdom Department of Education to investigate religious schools and their views on homosexuality.
Neil Davenport, head of Sociology at the JFS Sixth Form Centre in London, wrote a column on spiked-online.com Thursday asking "Why shouldn't faith schools criticize gays?"
"In a secular society that is supposedly committed to freedom of religion, the really outrageous thing here is that MPs and shrill campaigners are meddling in the values being taught in faith schools," wrote Davenport. "The accusation that faith schools are practising intolerance seems breathtakingly unconvincing, not to mention hypocritical, when one considers that militant atheists are themselves being intolerant of traditional and religious communities and their belief systems." more >>
As Christians in Egypt find themselves at the center of hostile attacks by Islamic protesters, a church in Minya was forced to cancel Mass on Sunday for the first time in 1,600 years.
"We did not hold prayers in the monastery on Sunday for the first time in 1,600 years," explained Priest Selwanes Lotfy of the Virgin Mary and Priest Ibram Monastery in Degla, south of Minya. The priest revealed that supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi destroyed the monastery, which includes three churches, according to Times of Israel.
He added that one of the attacker had wrote on the monastery's wall "donate [this] to the martyrs' mosque." more >>
A District Court judge has given the go-ahead for a lawsuit by a Wisconsin-based atheist organization against the Internal Revenue Service regarding the enforcement of its church politicking ban.
Judge Lynn Adelman of the Western District of Wisconsin ruled Monday that the Freedom From Religion Foundation of Madison could proceed with a lawsuit against the IRS.
The head of The Episcopal Church has stated that the declining numbers of her denomination could be the work of the Holy Spirit to create "greater fruitfulness."
TEC Presiding Bishop the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori made this statement last Thursday in remarks delivered at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's (ELCA) Churchwide Assembly in Pittsburgh. "Some have judged our smaller numbers as faithlessness but it may actually be the Spirit's way of pruning for greater fruitfulness," said Jefferts Schori.
"If we see ourselves standing at the foot of the cross, any such judgment will be far less important than our response." more >>
Voters at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's 2013 Churchwide Assembly in Pittsburgh have elected the first female leader of the mainline Protestant denomination.
The Reverend Elizabeth Eaton, bishop of the Northeastern Ohio Synod, was elected ELCA Presiding Bishop with 600 votes, beating out incumbent Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson, who got 287.
"We are a church that is overwhelmingly European in a culture that is increasingly pluralistic," said Eaton in remarks delivered Wednesday following the election. "We need to welcome the gifts of those who come from different places, that is a conversation we need to have as a church." more >>