N.J. pastor named to head Progressive National Baptists

Adelle M. Banks |

(RNS) A New Jersey pastor has been elected the next general secretary of the Progressive National Baptist Convention. The Rev. Walter Parrish III, senior pastor of Union Baptist Church in Montclair, N.J., was chosen for the position during the historically black denomination’s annual meeting, which concluded Aug. 8 in Louisville, Ky. Parrish, 50, will succeed […]

N.J. pastor named to head Progressive National Baptists

Adelle M. Banks |

(RNS) A New Jersey pastor has been elected the next general secretary of the Progressive National Baptist Convention. The Rev. Walter Parrish III, senior pastor of Union Baptist Church in Montclair, N.J., was chosen for the position during the historically black denomination’s annual meeting, which concluded Aug. 8 in Louisville, Ky. Parrish, 50, will succeed […]

Outspoken Catholic bishop steps down after stormy tenure

Daniel Burke |

(RNS) A Pennsylvania Catholic bishop whose public scoldings of politicians — including Vice President Joe Biden — created a stir nationwide resigned on Monday (Aug. 31), citing stress and lack of confidence in his leadership. Bishop Joseph Martino was appointed in 2003 to head the Diocese of Scranton, a heavily Catholic corner of northeastern Pennsylvania. […]

Muslims to pray in D.C. for `soul of America’

Jeff Diamant |

(UNDATED) Tens of thousands of Muslims plan to pray “for the soul of America” outside the U.S. Capitol in September in what is being described as a first-of-its-kind event. The event, spearheaded by the Dar-ul-Islam mosque in Elizabeth, N.J., will not include political speeches or placards, just prayer, said Hassen Abdellah, president of Dar-ul-Islam and […]

The blinking cursor

Kevin Eckstrom |

William Wan, the new religion reporter over at WaPo, had an intriguing story over the weekend about a seemingly trivial part of the Facebook phenomenon: Religious views. I suppose theologians and Ph.D. candidates could spend endless hours chewing over the difference between “religion” and “religious views,” but for now, let’s just say that Wan has […]

After `Da Vinci,’ Opus Dei cautiously optimistic about new film

Nicole Neroulias |

(UNDATED) Three years after “The Da Vinci Code” sent Opus Dei scrambling to counter the film’s depiction of a masochistic, murderous cabal, members of the Catholic organization have cautious hopes for a biopic of their founding father, St. Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer. “There Be Dragons,” which is currently filming in Argentina, is helmed by Oscar-nominated […]

Jews blasts WCC leader on Israel comments

Peter Kenny |

GENEVA (RNS/ENI) The American Jewish Committee on Friday (Aug. 28) denounced the World Council of Churches’ outgoing general secretary, the Rev. Samuel Kobia, for his declaration that Israel’s “occupation” of Palestinian territories is “a sin against God”. “Rev. Kobia parrots the same hypocritical statements regarding Israel that the WCC regularly issues, ignoring the root causes […]

Exit, stage right, for Martino?

Kevin Eckstrom |

Speculation is at a fever pitch that Catholic Bishop Joseph Martino of Scranton, Pa., will step down on Monday. Who cares? Well, Vice President Joe Biden for one, I’d suspect, and probably Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey for another. Martino, 63, has become one of the most outspoken Catholic bishops in the U.S. on the issue […]

N.J. bishops begin campaign against gay marriage

Jeff Diamant |

(RNS) Catholic bishops in New Jersey have begun a campaign against same-sex marriage in anticipation of a possible vote on the issue by state legislators after November’s gubernatorial election. The bishops directed Catholic priests throughout the state to distribute in parish bulletins a 2,300-word letter opposing same-sex marriage. The priests are also expected to speak […]