Study: Catholic students more prone to `hook up’ at college

Kimberlee Hauss |

(RNS) Women at Catholic colleges engage more frequently in sexual “hook ups” than women at secular colleges, a new study shows, and researchers suspect alcohol may be the reason. The study defines a “hook up” as “a physical encounter between two people who are largely unfamiliar with one another or otherwise briefly acquainted.” The encounters […]

Polish church stands by commemoration of German war dead

Jonathan Luxmoore |

WARSAW (RNS/ENI) A Polish archbishop has sided with a Catholic parish that erected a memorial to civilians who died at the hands of Soviet torpedoes during World War II, even though the victims were from neighboring Nazi Germany. “I do not agree that this monument skirts over differences,” said Archbishop Jozef Zycinski of Lublin. “In […]

Chaplains keep wary eye on Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell repeal

Adelle M. Banks |

WASHINGTON (RNS) As Congress and the Pentagon grapple with a proposal to allow gays to serve openly in the military, some chaplains — especially evangelicals — worry the change will infringe on their religious beliefs. “It’s morally wrong,” said the Rev. Billy Baugham, executive director of the International Conference of Evangelical Chaplain Endorsers, saying his […]

Thursday’s roundup

The much ballyhooed health-care summit is taking place today at Blair House (I know all of you are watching at your “summit parties”). The U.S. Catholic Bishops urged Congress to set aside partisan divisions and enact “genuine health care reform” that protects “the life, dignity, consciences, and health of all.” Investigators seized books on demons […]

The miracle worker

Francis X. Rocca |

Most barbers are happy with a nice big tip, but the man who used to trim Pope John Paul II says the late pontiff miraculously cured him of a hernia. But as the Times of London notes, even if the Vatican were to recognize the cure as miraculous, it would still not count toward John […]

COMMENTARY: And the first shall be last …

Dick Staub |

(RNS) Ever since I moved to an island in the middle of Puget Sound two years ago and no longer travel frequently, the friendly skies have grown less friendly. Alas, I slid from Premier Executive status to Premier. Yesterday, I learned I am no longer even Premier. How low can you go, I wondered? I […]

SIDEBAR: Once-a-decade Passion play is lifeblood for Bavarian village

Niels Sorrells |

OBERAMMERGAU, Germany (RNS) Taking just a quick look at this picturesque Bavarian town, it would be easy to lump it in with a whole host of other nearby villages. Skiing? Check. Local sought-after souvenirs? Check (in this case, wood carving). Quaint inns with generous helpings of beer, schnitzel and sausage? Check, check and check. But […]

ACLU files suit over USAID’s abstinence programs

Adelle M. Banks |

WASHINGTON (RNS) The American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit against the U.S. Agency for International Development for not providing information about “religiously infused” abstinence programs the agency has funded. The lawsuit, which was filed Thursday (Feb. 18), follows a report last July from USAID’s inspector general that found “some USAID funds were used for […]

Jewish groups agree to civility despite differences

Nicole Neroulias |

(RNS) Jewish agencies have resolved to handle internal disagreements over Middle East policy, health care reform and other polarizing issues calmly and respectfully, while banding together to confront what one leader called “a growing, global campaign to delegitimize Israel.” About 300 delegates representing 14 national and 47 community groups gathered in Dallas for the annual […]

Top German bishop steps down after drunk-driving arrest

Niels Sorrells |

BERLIN (RNS) Bishop Margot Kaessmann, the first female head of Germany’s Protestant church, stepped down from her position Wednesday (Feb. 24) amid controversy surrounding her arrest on Saturday for drunk driving. Kaessmann, 51, said she had made a “serious mistake” which she “deeply” regretted, reported the EPD, the official news service of the Evangelical (Lutheran) […]