Monday’s roundup

After a few days in Denver at the Religion Newswriters Association conference, the daily Religion Roundup now returns to its regularly scheduled broadcast. A list of the award winners (all deserving of the honors) is here. The Roundup gives a special shout out to Gustav Niebuhr, who received the lifetime achievement award, and whose work […]

Long denies `false allegations,’ plans to address church

Adelle M. Banks |

(RNS) Atlanta-area megachurch pastor Bishop Eddie Long has decried the “false allegations” lodged against him by three young men who filed suit over alleged sexual misconduct. “The charges against me and New Birth are false,” said Long, pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia, Ga., in a Thursday (Sept. 23) statement. “I have […]

Bishops rebuke theologians’ book over views on homosexuality

Daniel Burke |

(RNS) The U.S. Catholic bishops have issued a rare public rebuke of two Roman Catholic theologians, saying their 2008 book on sexual ethics marks a “radical departure” from church teaching and could be “harmful to one’s moral and spiritual life.” “The Sexual Person: Toward a New Catholic Anthropology,” challenges established Catholic orthodoxy on homosexuality, artificial […]

Court puts limits on German church’s ability to fire workers

Niels Sorrells |

BERLIN (RNS) The European Court of Human Rights ruled Thursday (Sept. 23) that a church organist’s employment rights were ignored when he was fired by a Catholic church for remarrying outside the church. The court said German churches have some latitude in firing staff who violate the faith’s moral tenets, but said it must be […]

Young Christians seek intentional community among poor

Steve Beaven |

GRESHAM, Ore. (RNS) In the two years since David Knepprath and Josh Guisinger moved into the rough-and-tumble Barberry Village complex, roughly a dozen young Christian men and women have made Barberry Village their home. Their goal: Create a sense of community in a chaotic neighborhood overrun with drugs, prostitution and gangs. Their work mirrors, in […]

Religious leaders see modest progress in anti-poverty goals

Chris Herlinger |

NEW YORK (RNS) Prominent religious, humanitarian and ethical leaders gave mixed grades this week to progress on meeting the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDG), the global yardsticks on fighting poverty. The ambitious goals, established in 2000 with a target date of 2015, include eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, reducing child […]

Justice Department: Land-use disputes often involve religious minorities

Adelle M. Banks |

WASHINGTON (RNS) Religious minorities — especially Muslims — figure prominently in religious freedom investigations by the Justice Department, a new report shows. “Jewish synagogues and schools, African-American churches, and, increasingly, Muslim mosques and schools are particularly vulnerable to discriminatory zoning actions taken by local officials, often under community pressure,” the 14-page report stated. The department […]

AA co-founder scaled back references to God in training manual

Whitney Jones |

(RNS) The basic text used for Alcoholics Anonymous programs, known as “The Big Book,” initially used stronger religious language but was reduced to appeal to a wider audience, The Washington Post is reporting. Hazelden, a nonprofit addiction treatment center, will release the working manuscript of the book written by AA’s co-founder, Bill Wilson, including hand-written […]

Embattled Philadelphia bishop says he won’t resign

Kevin Eckstrom |

(RNS) The embattled Episcopal bishop of Philadelphia is defiantly refusing to resign, saying his three years of “suffering” through various church trials has “strengthened” his ability to lead his diocese. Bishop Charles Bennison was removed from ministry in 2007 after being charged with “conduct unbecoming a member of the clergy.” He was found guilty in […]

Is burning a Quran an insult or intimidation?

Omar Sacirbey |

(RNS) A few bullet holes may be the difference between a burnt Quran left at a mosque in Knoxville, Tenn., and one left at a mosque in East Lansing, Mich. On Tuesday (Sept. 21), Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings said the man who allegedly left a burnt Quran outside the Islamic Center of Lansing on […]