A New York minister will soon fill the Obama administration's
long-vacant position to oversee international issues of religious
freedom. The Senate voted April 14 to confirm Suzan Johnson Cook for the
The vote, coming after a lengthy and controversial
nomination process, positions Cook to become the first female and the
first African American in the post.
WASHINGTON (RNS) The law calling for an annual National Day of Prayer
imposes solely on the duties of the U.S. president, leaving private
citizens no legal standing to challenge it, a federal appeals court
ruled Thursday (April 14).
WASHINGTON (RNS) The U.S. ambassador to Malta, who helped rally Catholic
support for President Obama's 2008 campaign, has spent "considerable
time" writing on topics beyond the mission of his office, particularly
about matters of faith, according to a new State Department
WASHINGTON (RNS) The Obama administration's embattled nominee for
religious freedom ambassador is comparing herself to former British
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher as she tries for a second time to land
WASHINGTON (RNS) The Supreme Court agreed Monday (March 28) to consider
whether a teacher who was fired from a religious school is subject to a
"ministerial exception" that can bar suits against religious
The case involves an employment dispute between a Michigan school
and a teacher who is defended by the Equal Employment Opportunity
WASHINGTON (RNS) The Army has started training chaplains on the repeal
of the ban on openly gay military members, saying those who are unable
to follow the forthcoming policy can seek a voluntary departure.
(RNS) The U.S. ambassador to Pakistan called the burning of a Quran at a
small Florida church "abhorrent" as Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari
condemned the act as a "serious setback" to world harmony.
(RNS) The controversial Florida pastor who halted plans to burn a Quran
on the 9/11 anniversary last year oversaw the burning of the Islamic
holy book on Sunday (March 20) after it was found "guilty" during a
"trial" at his church.
It's been proclaimed from pulpits and blogs for years: Christians
divorce as much as everyone else in America. But some scholars and
family activists are questioning the oft-cited statistics, saying
Christians who attend church regularly are more likely to remain wed.
They were moved when the first Muslim elected to Congress shed tears
discussing a Muslim who died trying to save others on 9/11. They were
irked by accusations from House members and annoyed when fellow Muslims
maligned their faith.
At times they constituted an Amen corner. At other moments, they jeered and glared at the images beamed live from Capitol Hill.
WASHINGTON (RNS) Days ahead of a controversial congressional hearing on
Islamic extremism, the Obama administration is highlighting the role
Muslim Americans play in combating radicalism in their communities.