home
RSS
October 7th, 2010
06:09 PM ET

More faithful, more fit?

Editor's Note: Over at the Chart, CNN's medical blog, Faseeha Altaf files this report.

Church groups emphasizing the importance of exercise inspired formerly sedentary older African American women to get fit, according to a study published Thursday in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

The "Sisters in Motion" study used a cornerstone of the African American community – faith – as a tool to promote physical activity among African American women, a group considered to be one of the least physically active in the U.S., according to Dr. O. Kenrik Duru, a primary care physician at University of California, Los Angeles and the study's lead researcher.

"Older African American women are very religious and spiritual. I think over 90 percent pray every day," said Duru, "When you're targeting community members like this, you want to focus on strengths."

Duru and his research team devised an eight-week, faith-based intervention program for 62 African-American women, age 60 or older, who reported engaging in 30 minutes of exercise less than three times per week.

Read the full story here.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Church

October 7th, 2010
05:45 PM ET

Family Research Council responds to Day of Truth pullout

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins has responded to my story yesterday about Exodus International pulling its sponsorship of Day of Truth, an annual event that encourages school students to "counter the promotion of homosexual behavior."  Exodus, a national Christian group, said the event has become too divisive and confrontational.

The Family Research Council, a powerful conservative Christian group in Washington, has promoted the Day of Truth in the past.

Here's Perkins' statement, more a response to allegations about faith-based bullying than about the Day of Truth:

We stand ready to work with all pro-family groups to ensure that students continue to hear an alternative to the ideological indoctrination in support of the homosexual movement which has become all too prevalent in our public schools.

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Culture wars • Homosexuality • Schools

October 7th, 2010
04:19 PM ET

My take: Fred Phelps is wrong about the gospel, right about the law

Editor's Note: Wayne Grudem, research professor of theology and biblical studies at Phoenix Seminary om Phoenix, Arizona, is author of Politics According to the Bible: A Comprehensive Resource for Understanding Modern Political Issues in Light of Scripture.

By Wayne Grudem, Special to CNN

Are the deaths of our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan a sign of God’s judgment on America?

So says the Rev. Fred Phelps, who goes to military funerals with signs saying “God hates you” and “Thank God for dead soldiers.” But Albert Snyder, the father of a dead marine, sued Phelps for causing him emotional distress by picketing at the 2006 funeral of his son, Marine Matthew Snyder.

The case came before the Supreme Court yesterday.

As a Christian professor of theology and biblical studies, I wish I could tell Fred Phelps that he is violating Jesus’ teaching that “Whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them” (Matthew 7:12).

Would Phelps want protesters to disrupt his son or daughter’s funeral? Surely not.

I remember how the funeral of a young family member overwhelmed me with a deeper grief and a deeper experience of God’s comfort in sorrow than I have ever felt in my life. For anyone to intrude on such a sacred time with angry protests is to violate our need for privacy when we long to be alone with family and friends and God.

I support the laws that now exist in 40 states placing restrictions on such protests anywhere near funerals. These laws rightly protect the dignity and privacy of such a solemn event.

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Christianity • Homosexuality • Opinion

French burqa ban clears last legal obstacle
October 7th, 2010
03:39 PM ET

French burqa ban clears last legal obstacle

France's law banning the burqa and other Islamic face coverings in public places is legal, top constitutional authorities in France ruled Thursday, clearing the final hurdle before the ban goes into effect.

The ban passed both houses of the French legislature by overwhelming margins earlier this year, and is scheduled to come into effect in the spring.

The law imposes a fine of 150 euros ($190) and/or a citizenship course as punishment for wearing a face-covering veil. Forcing a woman to wear a niqab or a burqa will be punishable by a year in prison or a 15,000-euro ($19,000) fine, the government said, calling it "a new form of enslavement that the republic cannot accept on its soil."

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Church and state • Courts • Culture wars • France • Islam • Religious liberty

October 7th, 2010
12:43 PM ET

Obama praises Desmond Tutu on his retirement

President Barack Obama congratulated Archbishop Desmond Tutu on his official retirement, praising him for the extensive list of accomplishments in his decades-long career.

"For decades he has been a moral titan - a voice of principle, an unrelenting champion of justice, and a dedicated peacemaker," Obama said in a written statement.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Leaders

October 7th, 2010
12:25 PM ET

Snyder: Pastor Phelps' actions 'cause emotional stress'

It is an emotional battle at the Supreme Court of the United States, pitting free speech, no matter how vile and hate-filled against the right to privacy.

Al Snyder is suing Pastor Fred Phelps for protesting at his son’s funeral, Lance Cpl. Mathew Snyder. Al was inside the supreme court when arguments were made and talks to John Roberts on American Morning.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Ethics • Fundamentalism • Military • Westboro Bapitst Church

October 7th, 2010
12:19 PM ET

Israel gets closer to passing loyalty law

Benjamin Netanyahu supports changes that would make new citizen's declare allegiance to "a Jewish state."

In a move likely to fuel tensions with its minority Arab population, Israel moved a step closer to passing a law that would require new citizens of the country to declare their loyalty to a "Jewish state."

In a statement released Wednesday night, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced his support for adding language to Israel's citizenship and entry law that would declare a new citizen's allegiance to "a Jewish and democratic state."

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Church and state • Israel • Judaism • Leaders

October 7th, 2010
07:00 AM ET

My Take: So who are the Druids, anyway?

Editor's Note: Philip Carr-Gomm is a writer whose books include What Do Druids Believe? and The Book of English Magic and Wild Wisdom Meditations.

By Philip Carr-Gomm, Special to CNN

The Druids have hit the headlines in the recent days because religious charity status has been granted in the UK to The Druid Network - a group set up to foster Druid values and projects.

This has caused excitement in a number of circles. Many Druids and pagans see this as a major triumph. Others are upset because they don’t think Druidry is a religion, they feel it is a philosophy or a way of life. 

And it’s worked at least one journalist into a frazzle. In The Daily Mail, Melanie Phillips revealed her disrespect and ignorance for many cultures and groups of people by writing such nonsense as "without the Judeo-Christian heritage there would be no morality and no true human rights," in a column about Druids.

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Druids • Europe • Opinion • Paganism • United Kingdom

Advertisement
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.

Advertisement
Advertisement