U.S. Anglicans (the ones who broke away from the Episcopal Church over gay bishops and other issues) will meet today to elect a successor to Archbishop Robert Duncan, owner of the most fantastic set of eyebrows this side of Rowan Williams. The Anglican Church of North America is calling it a conclave, but as Peter Smith points out, there won’t be any white smoke and no chimney.
Seriously. Google “Rowan Williams” and “Rowan Williams eyebrows” is one of the things that pops up.
Opponents of gay marriage (or supporters of traditional marriage, if you will) will rally today at the U.S. Capitol. They say they’re not rallying against anything or anyone. Let’s see how that turns out. In the meantime, Stephen Colbert broke down the arguments for gay marriage with legal eagles Ted Olson and David Boies, who won the fight over DOMA and Prop 8 last summer at the Supreme Court:
Remember Frank Schaefer, the United Methodist pastor from Pennsylvania who was defrocked for officiating at his son’s same-sex wedding? His appeal will be heard this weekend, and he’s hoping for reinstatement. Stay tuned.
I guess Italy really is the land of enchanted love. Our own Josephine McKenna talks to some of the women who are asking Pope Francis to change the clergy celibacy policy so they can marry the men (of the cloth) who captured their hearts. Guess these ladies don’t buy the whole Father Whatawaste thing.
Speaking of il Papa, there’s more than a little concern that Francis may be feeling his age (or worse) — he cleared the decks for much of July and August, but Vatican officials say there’s nothing to see here, folks. Catholic News Service tells everyone to take a breath:
Calm down. #PopeFrancis actually has more events planned for this summer than he did last summer.
— Catholic News Svc (@CatholicNewsSvc) June 18, 2014
Who can stop the pending excommunications of two Mormon activists? The suits in Salt Lake City, says Peggy Fletcher Stack. Laurie Goodstein at the NYT reports that a number of Mormon bloggers have been informally threatened with excommunication if they don’t renounce their views or resign their church membership.
And if you didn’t see it, be sure to check out Kimberly Winston’s drive-thru tour of Excommunication 101.
Speaking of Salt Lake, the Mormons’ adoption agency is getting out of the adoption business — at least no longer placing kids with prospective families. They say it’s because fewer kids are being put up for adoption.
And if you haven’t seen it yet, be sure to check out the South Park/Book of Mormon mash-up of “Hello,” which, curiously, was not made by Trey Parker or Matt Stone. You’re welcome.
Veteran GOP strategist Ralph Reed will size up GOP presidential wannabes at tomorrow’s Faith & Freedom conference here in D.C.; Reed calls them “the most conservative, the most pro-life and the most pro-family stable of candidates we’ve ever had.”
File under: Bizarre. Two Catholic priests in India have been charged in the death of a seminary rector; apparently the two men thought the rector was preventing them from moving up in the church.
I wonder if they put this on a PowerPoint? The militant group ISIS that’s storming its way to Baghdad in a Sunni campaign to wipe out as many Shiites as possible issued their tally of grim stats on apostates killed, converts won, etc. Says commenter Larry: “I am somewhat amused by how the business of terrorism has become so corporatized that they publish an annual report.”
Think all that talk about ecumenism is ho-hum churchy stuff? Think again, says Wes Granberg-Michaelson, as he paints a picture of real churches doing real things to overcome real differences (although no one’s totally sure how it all started).
Activist Shane Claiborne talks to a Southern Baptist pastor who’s on a 200-mile trek to try to end the death penalty in Texas. Everything’s bigger in Texas, including their execution stats.
Someone alert Brian Pellot: Twitter reversed itself and agreed to unblock Tweets that were deemed offensive or blasphemous by government censors.
I’m sure I can’t do this in 140 characters: Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby says Twitter and other social media are killing reflection in favor of knee-jerk reactions. His main point, tho, fits in exactly 138 characters:
“The best answer to a complex issue on which one has heard a soundbite from a sophisticated argument is not always given in 140 characters.”
That’s it for today, folks. Keep checking this space for the best in religion news, and if you haven’t already, throw us your email address below and we’ll send you the Roundup every day, for free …