The Boy Scouts agreed to allow gay members (but not leaders) in a vote that was 61% in favor, according to The AP. The usual suspects weren’t happy about it, and gay rights groups called it a major — if partial — victory.
The Scouts put out this kind of interesting note about sexual orientation v. sexual behavior:
We are unaware of any major religious chartered organization that believes a youth member simply stating he or she is attracted to the same sex, but not engaging in sexual activity, should make him or her unwelcome in their congregation.
The Mormons, who sponsor more Scout troops than anyone else, say they’re still cool with the new policy. John Stemberger of the group On My Honor, not so much. Mark Silk explains why this is a challenge for (and to) many churches.
When gay Catholics are outed (and losing their jobs) because of wedding announcements and even obituaries, it raises a good question: can gay and lesbian Catholics find a home in the church?
There’s an interesting debate within Reform Judaism about whether to allow rabbis who are married to non-Jews. More here, and a counter voice here.
Thing That Make You Go Hmmm: A new study suggests that WW2 vets who were troubled by their wartime experience are more likely to be in church today than GI’s who had a positive experience.
Neo-Reformed evangelical leader John Piper thought it was a good idea to quote the Book of Job and a verse about a mighty wind blowing down a house in the wake of this week’s tornado. Other evangelicals? Yeah, not so much.
HuffPo’s Paul Raushenbush sits down with actress Anne Heche to talk about the theology behind her new sitcom, “Save Me,” in which she plays a Cincinnati housewife who gets messages from God. Full disclosure: I tried to watch last night and just couldn’t get into it.
Reuters says religion is bringing balm and comfort in deeply religious Oklahoma following this week’s devastating tornado.
The Atlantic breaks down the connection between convicted Philly abortionist Kermit Gosnell and a move on Capitol Hill to ban abortion after the 20-week mark, both in D.C. and across the nation.
And God bless The Atlantic, they also break down President Obama’s weighty speech on drone policy yesterday into one easy-to-read flow chart. Check it out.
The Christian Brothers religious order has agreed to pay $16.5 million to settle abuse lawsuits with 400 victims stemming from the order’s network of Catholic schools.
Our own Jana Reiss takes her fellow Mormons to task for being a smidge too judgmental at folks who don’t look like they came out of Mormon Central Casting.
Speaking of Uncle Frank, atheists like what they see in the pope’s new-found openness to nonbelievers, particularly the idea that you don’t have to be religious to do good in the world.
And with that, it’s off to a long three-day weekend. But between your Memorial Day BBQs and beach getaways, take a minute and thank a vet or, better yet, thank the family of a serviceman or woman who never made it all the way home.