A Philadelphia priest was convicted June 22 of one count of child endangerment, becoming the first cleric in the Catholic Church’s long-running clergy sexual abuse scandal to be tried and found guilty of shielding molesters.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) A popular online advice columnist has said that the late Rev. Robert Drinan, a famed Jesuit priest and onetime Democratic congressman from Massachusetts, tried to kiss and fondle her in the 1970s when she was 18 or 19 years old.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Relations between the Vatican and the American nuns who are under investigation seem to be worsening after the sisters said Monday (June 18) that initial discussions with Rome about a resolution to their standoff were "difficult" and that comments by several U.S. bishops have not made negotiations easier.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) In an unexpected blow to the Obama administration and a major boon for America's Catholic bishops, the influential Catholic Health Association on Friday (June 15) rejected White House proposals aimed at easing faith-based objections to the contraception mandate.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) A coalition of nearly 150 religious leaders, led by conservative Protestants, have petitioned the Obama administration to broaden the exemption that allows churches and some religious organizations to avoid a controversial new mandate that all health care insurers provide free contraception coverage.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Amid continuing headlines about cover-ups of child abuse in the Catholic Church, an oversight board of lay Catholics on Wednesday (June 13) warned the nation's bishops that they must follow their own policies against abuse more rigorously if they hope to restore their fragile credibility.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) When the nation's Catholic bishops gather in Atlanta next week (June 13-15) for their annual spring meeting, a top agenda item will be assessing the reforms they adopted 10 years ago as revelations of widespread sexual abuse of children by priests consumed the church.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) As the nation's Catholic bishops mark 10 years since they adopted sweeping reforms to address the sexual abuse of children by clergy, the 800-pound gorilla in the chancery remains a lack of accountability for the bishops themselves.
A top Southern Baptist official who was accused of plagiarism in a radio segment claiming that civil rights leaders and President Obama used the Trayvon Martin case to stir racial tensions has lost his weekly call-in program but can keep his main job, a church panel has announced.
Leaders representing most of the nation’s 57,000 Catholic nuns answered a Vatican crackdown on their group by charging that Rome’s criticisms of the sisters were “unsubstantiated,” caused “scandal and pain” and “greater polarization” in the church.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Social conservatives on Thursday (May 31) reacted sharply to a federal appeals court ruling that declared the law barring federal recognition of same-sex marriage unconstitutional.
When blind Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng made a daring escape from house arrest this spring and found refuge in the U.S. embassy in Beijing, he instantly became a popular hero in the West and a rallying point for human rights activists everywhere.
c. 2012 Religion News Service NEW YORK (RNS) The wave of lawsuits filed this week by more than 40 Catholic groups against the Obama administration's birth control mandate was meant as a demonstration of church unity and influence in the face of what some bishops see as a grave threat to the church's very existence.
As pundits and politicians struggle to divine the political fallout from President Obama’s sudden endorsement of same-sex marriage, one thing has become clear: the Golden Rule invoked by Obama to explain his change of heart is the closest thing Americans have to a common religious law—and that has important implications beyond the battle for gay rights.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Dozens of Catholic universities, dioceses and other institutions filed lawsuits in courts around the country on Monday (May 21) in a coordinated effort, spearheaded by the U.S. hierarchy and Catholic conservatives, to overturn the Obama administration's contraception mandate plan.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Tensions between the Archdiocese of Washington and Georgetown University are escalating ahead of an address on Friday (May 18) by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, a conflict that is becoming a microcosm of the political battles raging inside the Catholic Church.
President Obama’s recent endorsement of same-sex marriage opened a torrent of speculation on what his newly enunciated position will mean politically, but the latest polls indicate that the public largely backs his views and that his stance may not hurt him at the ballot box.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) The nation's Roman Catholic bishops are reviewing the church's long-standing ties to the Girl Scouts of the USA after complaints that some of that venerable organization's programs might contradict church teachings on contraception and abortion.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Last month liberal Catholics were upset over House Republican budget chief Paul Ryan using a Georgetown University platform to defend his hard-line fiscal plan as a natural outgrowth of his Catholic faith.
c. 2012 Religion News Service (RNS) Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput announced Friday (May 4) that five priests accused of sexually abusing children last year would be barred from ministry and could be defrocked, while three others were cleared by a church-led investigation and could return to pastoral work.