The longer I take to get this puppy going the longer it will be before y’all can start your weekends. So here goes:

File under: Tired of all this saints stuff yet?

Stained glass window of Pope John Paul II, courtesy of Dennis Jarvis via Flickr

Stained glass window of Pope John Paul II. Photo courtesy of Dennis Jarvis via Flickr

This image is available for Web publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

Good, ‘cuz neither are we. Don’t believe that Popes John Paul II and John XXIII can be credited with miracles? These two women beg to disagree. And he’s not a saint (yet), but President Obama says Pope Francis is a pretty righteous dude, praising the pontiff in Time’s 100 Most Influential Issue: “Rare is the leader who makes us want to be better people,” Obama wrote. “Pope Francis is such a leader.” A pastor at a struggling parish in Camden, N.J., hopes a relic of JP2 could help turn the place around. And if you’re Jewish, JP2 and J23 are, well, mensches.

File under: Next time take Greyhound

Our own Cathy Grossman had a bit of a scare when her flight to Kansas City was struck by lightning. Here’s all the details. Thankfully, everyone is fine and Cathy’s on her way to a bioethics gig. Phew …

File under: Hold the tomato, add better living conditions

Not a religion story per se, but an issue that has garnered support from a lot of religious groups: Tomato pickers in Immokalee, Fla., say their years-long campaign to pressure Wal-Mart, McDonald’s, Taco Bell and others is paying off, with higher wages and better working conditions.

File under: An apt comparison? Discuss

The Atlantic compares the racially tinged comments of “Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson and defy-the-feds cattle rancher Cliven Bundy. Robertson’s a pseudo-religious figure, and Bundy seems to be just crazy. But is it a fair comparison? Discuss.

File under: The humidity in South Carolina can be deadly (to your brain)

I’ll just let Politico say it all, about South Carolina pastor Det Bowers, who’s trying to unseat incumbent Sen. Lindsey Graham:

During a sermon on the Book of Peter delivered at the Christ Church of the Carolinas, Bowers said it was an “abominable idolatry” when wives love their children more than their husbands, arguing that’s what causes divorces most of the time. He added that in the “vast preponderance” of situations where men are adulterous, women are to blame because they have showered too much emotion on their children instead of their husbands.

File under: It’s still raining in Hollywood

Has it been 40 days and 40 nights yet? Either way, “Noah” director Darren Aronofsky says his film isn’t religious, and neither is he, but the pro-environment messages in the Russell Crowe blockbuster are straight out of Scripture. Be sure to check out the quote from some guy named Jack Jenkins, who we believe once masqueraded as a writer here at RNS.

File under: A (not so) nice Jewish boy

How does a nice Jewish boy from Brooklyn end up recruiting Islamist militants and spewing hatred online? “What I did was stupid and it was wrong and I am paying the price for that now, period,” Yousef al-Khattab tells NPR.

File under: Ladies, please leave your shoes secured to your feet

Hillary Clinton, the soon-to-be-grandmother and likely-to-be-presidential candidate, will be addressing fellow United Methodist women on Saturday. Here’s our question: How much is she getting for this speech? After all, she gets a reported $200,000 a speech, and when she spoke to scrap metal recyclers in Vegas, she nearly got hit by a flying shoe. Maybe it’s pro bono.

File under: You may want to consider another law school

From British Columbia: Canadian lawyers voted not to accredit a proposed law school at Trinity Western University, in part because the school’s conduct code prohibits sex outside of (man-woman) marriage.

File under: You may want to consider another juror

A Sikh man in California really wants to serve on jury duty — and c’mon, really, who doesn’t? — but court officials have told him to leave his ceremonial dagger, or kirpan, at home. Gursant Singh says he shouldn’t have to choose between his faith and his civic duty.

File under: They don’t believe in Scripture, and you don’t know Scripture

Say you’re in seminary and you no longer believe in God. What to do? Link up with other nonbelievers in a new “Rational Doubt” blog. Or let’s say you’re a Christian or Jew and you think you know what the Bible says or doesn’t say about women, racism or sexuality. Chances are you might be wrong, according to a new survey. Not sure? Take our short quiz to test your biblical IQ. And while you’re at it, here’s three reasons why we’re skittish about talking about hell.

And with that, it’s on to the weekend. Make sure we have your email address below so we can keep sending you the daily Roundup. You can file it under: worth reading.


  1. re: “Canadian lawyers voted not to accredit a proposed law school at Trinity Western University, in part because the school’s conduct code prohibits sex outside of (man-woman) marriage.”

    Actually, that vote was only by Benchers of the Ontario Law Society, and what they voted on was not to accredit any student receiving a law degree from TWU, if it is allowed to create a law program, which means they would be unable to practice law in Ontario. They weren’t voting on the law program itself.

    That Christian university is in B.C., where the Law Society Benchers there recently voted to approve the proposed Christian law school. Then, just a few days ago, a B.C. lawyer forced the BC Law Society to hold a special meeting to revisit the result of the Benchers vote. Thousands of BC lawyers signed the petition to hold that special meeting. So, the issue of whether or not TWU will actually get to create a law school, and if it does, whether other Provincial Law Societies will follow the Ontario lead and refuse to accredit anyone receiving a law degree from TWU, remains an open question.

    At the heart of this dispute is that TWU’s Community Charter prohibits certain behaviours by students, such as extra-marital sex or same-sex, but those prohibitions violate the Canadian Constitution’s Charter of Rights.

    • Update:

      “Nova Scotia’s bar society has voted to conditionally approve Trinity Western University’s proposed new law school a day after barristers in Ontario ruled not to accredit the faith-based institution.”

      “The conditional acceptance means that the Nova Scotia’s Barristers Society will only accept articling students from the school if it changes the covenant for law students or allows them to opt out.”

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