Trump courts religious groups with rules that worry LGBTQ groups

Religion / Religious News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump unveiled a slew of rule proposals Thursday intended to expand the ability of religious groups to get federal money and to loosen restrictions on how they spend it, courting a valuable political constituency as the Senate began a critical phase of the impeachment process.

The nod toward Trump's evangelical ...Read more

Bill would replace Bible courses in Ky. schools with 'variety of religious texts'

Religion / Religious News /

Approximately 10 to 15 school districts in Kentucky are currently offering Bible literacy courses, but a bill introduced in the 2020 General Assembly would replace them with classes on "various religious texts" of the many religions practiced in the state.

State Rep. McKenzie Cantrell, D-Louisville, said she introduced House Bill 243 this week ...Read more

Benedict XVI disowns co-authorship of controversial celibacy book

Religion / Religious News /

VATICAN CITY -- Retired pope Benedict XVI never agreed to appear as the co-author of a controversial book on priestly celibacy, his personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gaenswein, said Tuesday.

It was a remarkable disavowal of a work seen by many as both an attack on Pope Francis' authority and a serious breach of Benedict's promise to remain "...Read more

Spiritual Life: Follow Jesus in speaking and living truth in love

Religion / Religious News /

Thinking back on my boyhood in West Richland, Wash., I sometimes wonder how growing up during the Cold War shaped my worldview.

Probably not much.

My eyes were filled with wonder when I saw thousands of army troops covering our whole area in war games. But even though news accounts of the day spoke of our U-2 spy plane being shot down over ...Read more

Can this church be saved? Split on LGBTQ issues, United Methodists consider divorce

Religion / Religious News /

SAN DIEGO -- Sexual issues lead to many divorces. That includes the threatened split in the United Methodist Church. Divided on same-sex marriage and the status of LGBTQ believers, the nation's third largest Christian denomination -- after Catholicism and the Southern Baptist Convention -- may soon break up.

"No one celebrates separation. I ...Read more

In a church of their own, Latino atheists fear no God. But Mom? That's another matter

Religion / Religious News /

LOS ANGELES -- Once a month, a very particular Sunday service unfolds on a patio outside a Starbucks in El Monte. When jets fly overhead, members of the congregation have to shout across the table at one another.

Some days, there's a small crowd, and the conversation lasts for hours. On other days, Arlene Rios waits alone.

It's not easy being ...Read more

Light Notes: No malarkey! There are mistakes I never want to make

Religion / Religious News /

I like to learn from mistakes ... especially other people's. And from my experience that dates back to typewriters and dinosaurs roaming the Earth, it's a sure-fire way to avoid trouble.

That's why, when my husband and I were thinking about getting a new bicycle rack come spring, a device that would mount on top of our Jeep, I had misgivings; ...Read more

United Methodist Church negotiates a likely split over LGBTQ issues

Religion / Religious News /

The United Methodist Church has long been riven by bitter divisions between its U.S. and international congregations over whether to allow same-sex marriage and ordain gay clergy.

Now it appears the church -- whose 7 million U.S. members make it the nation's second-largest Protestant denomination -- is heading for a permanent split.

On Friday ...Read more

United Methodist Church announces plan to split over gay marriage, clergy

Religion / Religious News /

CHICAGO -- The United Methodist Church -- one of the largest religious denominations in the United States -- announced Friday that it is expected to split up over longstanding disagreements over LGBTQ inclusion.

A group of UMC bishops, as well as progressives and traditionalists within the worldwide denomination of 12.5 million, signed a ...Read more

United Methodist Church negotiates a likely split over LGBTQ issues

Religion / Religious News /

A negotiating team within the United Methodist Church has developed a plan for splitting the denomination, whose members had reached an impasse over whether to allow same-sex marriage and ordination of gay clergy.

The plan, announced Friday through the church's news service, would allow congregations that lean toward the church's "...Read more

Code of silence reigns amid scandals, misbehavior at all-boys Catholic schools

Religion / Religious News /

DETROIT -- When word got out that a football player at De La Salle High School was sexually hazed in the locker room, about a dozen athletes clammed up, including the victim, who police said doesn't want charges.

The same thing happened after a brawl broke out in December between students from Birmingham Brother Rice and Catholic Central: The ...Read more

Charlotte diocese releases list of 14 clergy credibly accused of child sex abuse

Religion / Religious News /

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Catholic Diocese of Charlotte released a list Monday of 14 clergy members who have been credibly accused of child sexual abuse in western North Carolina since the diocese formed in 1972.

The diocese, which serves more than 400,000 Catholics in 46 counties, said no clergy now working for it has been credibly accused of ...Read more

Montenegro adopts law that could curb ties with neighbor Serbia

Religion / Religious News /

BELGRADE, Serbia -- Lawmakers in Montenegro passed a controversial bill on religion that may strip its biggest denomination -- part of the Serbian Orthodox Church -- of vast assets, and fan passions in a region still reeling from ethnic conflict.

The former Yugoslav republic, which joined NATO in 2017 despite opposition from Russia, ignored ...Read more

United Methodists prepare for changes that get tougher on LGBTQ issues

Religion / Religious News /

ATLANTA -- Five years ago, the Rev. Charles W. Savage II joined more than 80 other United Methodist Church pastors and theologians from around the nation in thoughtful conversations and prayer for an amicable separation between progressives and traditionalists.

The denomination had reached a crossroads years earlier over a number of issues; ...Read more

This Catholic priest celebrates Mass in a casino. He calls prayer a 'sure bet'

Religion / Religious News /

LAUGHLIN, Nev. -- Charlie Urnick stands in a backstage hallway at Don's Celebrity Theater, tucked inside the thrumming Riverside Resort Hotel and Casino. Smiling, shaking hands with well-wishers, he awaits the evening's events with the knowing calm of a veteran headliner.

But inside this brightly lit corridor, where musicians and magicians have...Read more

Growth of underground churches worrisome for China's leaders

Religion / Religious News /

CHENGDU, China -- Li Chengju glared at her prison interrogator as he pressed her to renounce her Christian church and condemn her pastor.

Her captor warned she would not be so lucky as the pastor, who was locked in secret detention but at least might get a day in court.

"Look at you. You sweep the floors at church," the interrogator said. "You...Read more

Pope's Christmas message: Do good even if others are not good to you

Religion / Religious News /

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis on Tuesday hailed the virtue of selfless Christian charity as he celebrated Christmas Eve Mass in St Peter's Basilica.

The service is one of the most important ceremonies in the Catholic liturgy, marking the birth of Jesus Christ. Thousands of people flocked to the basilica and St Peter's Square to follow it.

"May ...Read more

Pope quotes late cardinal to say church is '200 years out of date'

Religion / Religious News /

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis on Saturday called on the Vatican hierarchy to embrace change as he quoted a late progressive cardinal who warned that the Catholic Church was seriously behind the times.

"Cardinal Martini, in his last interview a few days before his death, said words that should make us reflect: 'The church is 200 years out of date...Read more

Light Notes: Could their Christmas wish come true? Not until this 'miracle' happened

Religion / Religious News /

Long before twinkling lights or gingerbread houses dot the scene, the Christmas Wish List appears. Traditionally it's filled-to-the-brim and stretching long, holding possibilities certain to bring joy.

But for one family this holiday season, the list was surprisingly short.

"When I asked our boys, 'What do you want for Christmas?' the first ...Read more

At this church, many see a divine image of the Virgin of Guadalupe written in concrete

Religion / Religious News /

LOS ANGELES -- The parishioners at Holy Family Catholic Church in Artesia walked out into the chilly morning darkness to gawk at the puddle on the sidewalk.

Just minutes before, they had witnessed the spectacle that is the mananitas Mass: plumed Aztec dancers and traditional hymns to celebrate the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico's ...Read more