As a teenager in a Catholic high school and church, Lauren McCormick of Toms River, New Jersey, was taught to look at the world in ways that revolved around Jesus. That was a dozen religion courses ago, including six in an esoteric field she now hopes to study for the rest of her life—ancient Near Eastern pagan religions.
After Hurricane Katrina produced vivid images of poverty in America, leaders of five mainline denominations renewed their call on Congress to oppose deep cuts to programs serving the working poor, children and seniors.
A federal judge in California has ruled that the Pledge of Allegiance is unconstitutional, deciding a case that had been refiled by an atheist whose previous challenge to the phrase “under God” reached the Supreme Court.
Israel ended its 38-year occupation of the Gaza Strip following one last difficult decision. Israeli government officials decided at the last moment not to go ahead with the destruction of 19 synagogues in the coastal strip.