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Kim Hairston/Baltimore Sun/TNS

A difficult choice for Baltimore: Which Catholic churches will close?

Religion / Religious News /

BALTIMORE — A clap of thunder sounded across Baltimore on a rainy Saturday morning in 2020. The lockdown associated with the early days of the COVID pandemic was in place and the city seemed eerily quiet until the fire sirens began to wail.

During that early spring squall, a bolt of lightning struck an East Baltimore church. Soon the steeple ...Read more

Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel/TNS

Fed up with Florida legislators, faith leaders create Black history program for churches

Religion / Religious News /

MIAMI — At New Generation Missionary Baptist Church in Opa-locka, a new class has gained popularity with younger congregants — and it’s not your typical Bible study or Sunday school.

Since last year, the church has been teaching classes about African American history using a program created by leaders from Faith in Florida, a coalition of...Read more

Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images North America/TNS

Commentary: Alabama, religious freedom and frozen embryos

Religion / Religious News /

The Alabama Constitution provides that "no religion shall be established by law" and that "the civil rights, privileges, and capacities of any citizen shall not be in any manner affected by his religious principles." Those prohibitions were forcefully reinforced in a 1998 Religious Freedom Amendment. Like similar provisions of the First ...Read more

Natrice Miller/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS

Religious rights bill advances through Georgia Senate

Religion / Religious News /

ATLANTA — A bill that would expand religious rights passed the Georgia Senate on Thursday over objections that it could lead to discrimination against gay people.

The Senate voted along party lines, 33-19, to approve the religious rights legislation, which would limit the government’s ability to enforce laws that conflict with religious ...Read more

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Seattle is the least-religious large metro area in the U.S.

Religion / Religious News /

Americans have grown less religious over the past couple of decades, and attendance at religious services is down across the country. Of course, some parts of the country are a lot less religious than others. New survey data shows Seattle is one of those places.

A clear majority of adults in the Seattle area — around 64% — never attend ...Read more

Kevin Ruck/Dreamstime/TNS

Notre Dame's tiny namesake shows plight of religious colleges

Religion / Religious News /

Times are hard on the campus of Notre Dame.

Not the famous University of Notre Dame, home to Fighting Irish football and more than 13,000 students — little Notre Dame College, a less prestigious Roman Catholic school in the Midwest.

Over the past decade, the 102-year-old private college with about 1,400 students, located in South Euclid, ...Read more

Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun/TNS

Catholic group asks Maryland attorney general to end investigation of Catholic Church abuse

Religion / Religious News /

A Catholic advocacy group called on Maryland Attorney General Anthony Brown to halt investigations into child sex abuse in the Archdiocese of Washington and the Diocese of Wilmington, Delaware, in a letter Tuesday.

Bill Donahue, president of the national Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, wrote that it was “exasperating” that ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

NC pastor says rape suspects aren't guilty if victims wore shorts, prompting outrage

Religion / Religious News /

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Anger welled in Charlotte mom Crystal Nichole as she watched a North Carolina pastor’s sermon.

He would find a rape suspect not guilty if the victim wore shorts or a short dress, the Rev. Bobby Leonard of Bible Baptist Tabernacle in Monroe said in the sermon.

“If you dress like that and you get raped and I’m on the ...Read more

NATRICE MILLER/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS

Religious rights bill clears Georgia Senate committee

Religion / Religious News /

Georgia senators revived a bill to increase legal protections for religion, a long-sought Republican goal that is opposed by gay rights advocates who say it could lead to discrimination.

The proposal passed the Senate Judiciary on a partisan vote Thursday, with six Republicans in favor and three Democrats against. Senate Bill 180 could receive...Read more

Andy Beshear/TNS/TNS

GOP advances bill opponents say would pave the way for discrimination of LGBTQ Kentuckians

Religion / Religious News /

A Republican-backed “religious liberty” bill opponents say would weaken local governments’ ability to enforce Fairness Ordinances and embolden individuals who wish to discriminate based on religious beliefs won approval from a legislative committee on Wednesday.

Rep. Steve Rawlings, R-Burlington, told the House Judiciary Committee that ...Read more

Luiz C. Ribeiro/New York Daily News/TNS

Cardinal Dolan denounces funeral for trans activist Cecilia Gentili held at St. Patrick's Cathedral

Religion / Religious News /

Cardinal Dolan has denounced the recent funeral for trans icon Cecilia Gentili that was held at St. Pat’s.

More than 1,000 people attended the ceremony at the historic Manhattan cathedral on Thursday — a crowd Dolan described as disrespectful.

“Once the funeral started is when the trouble started because of the irreverence and the ...Read more

Sheetal Banchariya/New York Daily News/TNS

St. Patrick's holds rare Mass of Reparation after 'scandalous behavior' at service for NYC trans icon Cecilia Gentili

Religion / Religious News /

NEW YORK — St. Patrick’s Cathedral held a rare Mass of Reparation Saturday after the Archdiocese of New York claimed mourners at a funeral service for trans icon Cecilia Gentili last week engaged in “scandalous behavior.”

St. Patrick’s pastor, the Very Rev. Enrique Salvo, said that at Cardinal Dolan’s request, the Mass was offered ...Read more

Sara Nevis/The Sacramento Bee/TNS

Lawmaker proposes religious exemption for California motorcycle helmet law

Religion / Religious News /

FRESNO, Calif. — Turban-wearing Sikh motorcyclists would be free to ride helmet-free in California if Assembly Bill 2392, proposed by Fresno Assembly member Esmeralda Soria, becomes law this year.

California’s helmet law for motorcyclists was passed in the 1990s as a public safety move, but for former Fresno City Councilmember Soria the ...Read more

On combined Valentine's Day and Ash Wednesday, religious leaders say you can partake in both

Religion / Religious News /

Wednesday is Valentine's Day, a holiday widely observed by indulging in something romantic and sweet with the person you love. But many Catholics and other Christians across Southern California will be receiving a cross made of ash on their foreheads that day because it's Ash Wednesday, whose vibe is anything but indulgent.

How are you supposed...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Should a Florida man's church confession be evidence in a criminal case?

Religion / Religious News /

CLEARWATER, Fla. — One day a little more than three years ago, a man gripped a microphone as he stood before a stage inside a Pinellas County church and told his pastor and parish leaders he was sorry for what he’d done to the pastor’s 12-year-old granddaughter.

Juan Martin Gonzalez said that he’d sinned. He apologized. He vowed to “...Read more

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Milei praises Pope in reversal after Vatican meeting

Religion / Religious News /

For Javier Milei, Pope Francis used to be “the devil’s man on Earth.” But now, after an encounter at the Vatican, the president praises the pontiff as “the most important” Argentine.

Milei’s U-turn, in a television interview to be broadcast Monday evening, sees him admitting that he’s been forced to change his tune.

“One of the...Read more

Tammy Ljungblad/The Kansas City Star/TNS

Woman says founder of Kansas City's International House of Prayer sexually abused her when she was 14 in the 1980s

Religion / Religious News /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Michigan woman has come forward with allegations that International House of Prayer founder Mike Bickle sexually abused her starting when she was 14 and before he formed the Kansas City ministry.

Her allegations, which some say are the most damning to surface yet about Bickle and come after four decades of silence, are ...Read more

Monica Herndon/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

A church began ringing its bells again. Not everyone is happy

Religion / Religious News /

PHILADELPHIA -- Late last year, Rev. Alfred Bradley planned a Christmastime surprise for the neighborhood he grew up in. He was bringing back the sound of church bells to the Fishtown neighborhood.

Thanks to two crafty volunteers and two generous families, the Holy Name of Jesus Church on E. Berks and Gaul Streets received a bell tower upgrade ...Read more

Gary W. Green/Orlando Sentinel/TNS

Hindu faithful denied permission to build temple in Gotha, Florida

Religion / Religious News /

ORLANDO, Fla. — Leaders of a Hindu congregation hoping to build a new temple in Gotha will have to find a different location.

Orange County commissioners voted 5-2 on Tuesday to reject the congregation’s appeal of a zoning board ruling which concluded the proposed temple with a 43-foot-tall spire would be a “detrimental intrusion” in ...Read more

Monica Herndon/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

Religious 'nones' now outnumber Catholics and evangelical Protestants

Religion / Religious News /

Americans who don’t belong to any religion now reportedly outnumber the nation’s largest religious groups.

“Nones” — as Pew Research Center identifies people with no religious affiliation — made up 28% of the 3,300 respondents surveyed for a study published Wednesday called “Religious ‘Nones’ in America: Who They Are and What ...Read more