- Cult leader and mass murderer Charles Manson found with cell phone again: Manson, 76, is one of America’s most notorious mass murderers who, along with his cult followers, was convicted in the 1969 murders of seven victims, including pregnant actress Sharon Tate, who was the wife of director Roman Polanski.
- Obama delivers major speech on personal faith President Barack Obama gave an unusually personal speech about his religious faith on Thursday, saying that “it is the biblical injunction to serve the least of these that keeps me going and keeps me from being overwhelmed,” in address to a prayer breakfast in Washington. The speech, delivered at the National Prayer Breakfast, comes on the heels of public opinion surveys that show only a minority of Americans know that Obama is a Christian and that a growing number believe he’s a Muslim.
- Whipped to death for having ‘affair’ with married man: A teenager whipped to death in Bangladesh for having a relationship with a married man was allegedly raped by her cousin, it has emerged. Four Islamic clerics were arrested this week for ordering Mosammet Hena, 14, to receive 100 lashes in a fatwa or religious edict at a village in the south-western Shariatpur district. It has now been reported that the teenage girl was raped by her married cousin and then accused of having an affair with him.
- Radical Muslim sect warns of ‘full-scale war’: Boko Haram, a radical Muslim sect in northern Nigeria, has claimed responsibility for the assassination of a candidate and a series of other attacks, warning in posters put up around town that they plan to launch “a full-scale war.”
Analysis, Commentary, Opinion
- Is secretive Christian group a threat to US church/state division?: The Family, which has links with senior politicians including Barack Obama, has been dogged by controversy in recent years
- That Hideous Bible? C.S. Lewis Bible Kicks Up Gender Protest: A prolific C. S. Lewis scholar has initiated an e-mail petition against a Bible that features devotional readings from the beloved British apologist. Louis Markos says the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) translation used in The C. S. Lewis Bible has a gender-neutral agenda, which he says is at odds with Lewis’s convictions.
- My time among the ‘ultra-Zionists Louis Theroux spends time with ultra-nationalist Jewish settlers and discovers a small, but very committed subculture.
- When sharing faith means sharing germs: Baptism and the kissing of icons may raise health concerns, yet faith often trumps our modern obsession with hygiene
- App to help sinners confess reconciles 21st century with Catholic faith: Confession creates a customised and password-protected ”examination of conscience” based on a person’s age, sex, vocation and the time elapsed – in days, weeks, months or years – since the last confession. It also has seven acts of contrition to choose from, all for $US1.99.
- Mystery of library’s ‘crying’ statue of Virgin Mary: A small statue of the Virgin Mary is crying tears, claim a number of visitors to a small, non-descript building in Reading, Ohio. Believers and non-believers alike have reported seeing the figurine, which lives in the back of a religious lending library, weep.
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