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Opinion: Heavenly minded, financially empowered
October 4th, 2010
11:50 AM ET

Opinion: Heavenly minded, financially empowered

Editors note: Bishop T.D. Jakes is a best-selling author and senior pastor of a 30,000-member church, The Potter's House.

As a faith leader, entrepreneur, and philanthropist, I've always had one foot in both the practical and the spiritual worlds. Prayer is good, but you also have to be able to manage your checkbook.

As our nation went through the early stages of the recession, I can remember the rapid decline of the housing market. During the slide, I was concerned to hear voices from academia, finance and government give the lion's share of the blame to the minority consumer for defaulting on loans for homes that they could not afford.

The conversation went as far as to suggest that church pastors contributed to the housing demise because they encouraged their parishioners to purchase homes.

What we must realize is that it was not wrong for people to want a new home or car. But it was wrong for financial institutions to prey on those desires with unbalanced financial solutions.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Faith • Leaders • Poverty

October 4th, 2010
11:30 AM ET

Vandals torch West Bank mosque

Vandals torched a West Bank mosque and sprayed graffiti on its walls early Monday, officials said.

Palestinian witnesses said four people tried to set fire to the mosque, burning carpets and 12 Qurans around 3:30 a.m. (9:30 p.m. ET Sunday).

The arsonists sprayed "revenge" and "price tag" on the walls, Israeli police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld said.

CNN Producer Kareem Khadder observed burned carpets and tiles that had been broken off pillars inside the mosque. A spray-painted graffito in Hebrew read, "This is toilet number 18." Another said, "Revenge and avenge."

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Islam

October 4th, 2010
10:45 AM ET

Vatican slams Berlusconi over anti-Semitic, sexist jokes

The Vatican's official newspaper strongly  criticized Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi on Sunday, calling it  "deplorable" that he tells blasphemous, anti-Semitic and sexist jokes.

The editorial came a day after the Italian Catholic bishops' newspaper  said Berlusconi needed to show more respect.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Holocaust • Italy

October 4th, 2010
10:32 AM ET

Far-right Dutch politician tried over anti-Muslim film

Far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders went on trial in the Netherlands on Monday, charged with inciting discrimination and hatred over a controversial film he made about Islam.

Wilders' film "Fitna," which he released online in March 2008 to international outcry, features disturbing images of terrorist acts superimposed over verses from the Quran in an apparent attempt to paint Islam as a threat to Western society.

Comments Wilders made in a variety of media between 2006 and 2008 form part of the case against him.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Islam • Netherlands • Quran

October 4th, 2010
07:00 AM ET

My Faith: Why I lead an online synagogue

Editor's Note: Rabbi Laura Baum leads OurJewishCommunity.org, the world’s largest online synagogue, and is a rabbi at Congregation Beth Adam in Cincinnati, Ohio.

By Laura Baum, Special to CNN

With The Social Network opening over the weekend, I can’t help but marvel at how the Facebook phenomenon and online tools have changed our relationships and our sense of community in a few short years.

Hundreds of millions use Facebook to keep up with friends, people follow their elected representatives on Twitter, and long-distance relationships aren’t quite as hard thanks to video chat.

We maintain so many of our personal and professional relationships online. So why would our religious involvement be any different?

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Judaism • Technology

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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.

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