By John Blake, CNN
(CNN) – The Rev. Bernice King, daughter of the legendary civil rights leader, is leaving an Atlanta megachurch that’s been rocked by a sex scandal involving its preacher.
King’s announcement came a week after Bishop Eddie Long, senior pastor of New Birth Missionary Church, settled out of court with four young men who filed lawsuits against him last year claiming he coerced them into sexual relationships.
King said her announcement had nothing to do with Long’s legal battles. She said Tuesday she was “tremendously blessed” by Long’s ministry but that now she’s going start her own.
“I’m going to launch a ministry. I’m not calling it a church right now,” King said during an interview with Atlanta radio station Praise 102.5. “What God is showing me doesn’t look like what people are accustomed to.”
Editor's Note: Dannah Gresh is author of What Are You Waiting For? The One Thing No One Ever Tells You About Sex.
By Dannah Gresh, Special to CNN
Recent studies have revealed some good news in the sex culture among college co-eds: there are more virgins among them now than was the case a few years ago.
These days, 29% of females and 27% of males between ages 15 and 24 claim to be virgins, up from 22% of both sexes in 2002, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
But among the college students who aren’t abstaining, we’re seeing more sex, thanks to casual hookups. According to recent research from Stanford University, the majority of college co-eds are still having sex, with an average 9.7 sexual partners for men and 7.1 for women.
Thankfully, we have more scientific information about casual sex than our parents did when they drove their Volkswagen buses to Woodstock for a dose of the sexual revolution. They wanted to think—as many of those cruising along the New Millennium highway still do—that we can engage in the act of sex without the emotion.
By Mitra Mobasherat and Joe Sterling, CNN
(CNN) – The three Iranian security officers rang the doorbell, politely informed the man of his arrest, thoroughly searched the house, confiscated high-tech gear and books, and whisked him away to the nation's notorious Evin Prison.
The early Sunday morning raid took three hours. Now, every second seems like an eternity for the man's anguished family members, praying for his physical safety, hoping for his release, and getting their heads around the prospect of a long stint in prison, his relatives told CNN.
His family says the reason for his arrest is his religion.
By Harmeet Shah Singh, CNN
New Delhi (CNN) - The Dalai Lama has formally relinquished his political and administrative powers, a spokesman said Tuesday.
The Tibetan spiritual leader approved amendments to the exiled constitution to enable him to devolve his political responsibilities into the community's elected leadership and judiciary, according to officials.
Lobsang Choedak, a spokesman for the exiled Tibetan government, said the changes were carried out during a three-day session of its parliament in the Himalayan town of Dharamsala, India. The Dalai Lama approved them Sunday.
Washington (CNN) - Protesting members of the controversial Westboro Baptist Church were met with an unlikely group of counterprotesters Monday at Arlington Cemetery.
Hours before President Barack Obama led the nation's Memorial Day observances at the Tomb of the Unknowns, three members of the Westboro Baptist Church were challenged by others who disagreed with them - including members claiming to be from the Ku Klux Klan.
The Kansas-based church has attracted nationwide attention for its angry, anti-gay protests at the funerals of U.S. military members.
Peace Lutheran Church in Joplin, Missouri, remembers the tornado victims one week later. CNN's Chris Turner reports.
By Eric Marrapodi, Jim Acosta and Tom Foreman, CNN
Washington (CNN) - The biblical story of Lazarus is happening again in Africa. At least it looks that way.
One moment, men, women and children suffering from AIDS are lying at death's door, barely able to move, open their eyes, or speak. Then a few days or weeks later, they are walking, talking, laughing; truly appearing to have come back from the dead.
This astonishing transformation has been repeated all over the continent thousands of times over the past decade. And, since 2003, America has been helping to pay for it.
But a budget-slashing effort in Congress this year threatens to bring much of that progress to a sudden and catastrophic halt.
Read the full story on CNN.com/Politics
(CNN) – Sunday has long been a day for reflection in Joplin, Missouri, with residents flocking to churches and other places of worship for guidance, understanding and a sense of community.
Now, several of those churches are gone, as are scores who might otherwise be going to them, thanks to a horrific tornado that ripped through the southwest Missouri city one week ago. That makes this Sunday especially significant, not to mention the subsequent days, as religious leaders try to offer meaning after such a senseless disaster.
"You could see ... the challenge they are going to face, as they preach funerals in the weeks to come," Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon said after meeting faith-based leaders this week. "It's enormous."
Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.
By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN
The Roman Catholic Church isn't the only religious institution that has failed to respond directly and transparently to allegations of sexual impropriety.
Bishop Eddie Long, the pastor of the Georgia-based New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, has just settled out of court with the four young men who alleged Long had sexually coerced them. And neither side is talking.
A federal judge in Texas has told the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs that it cannot censor a pastor's invocation at a Memorial Day ceremony.
The VA had ordered the Rev. Scott Rainey to remove a phrase using Jesus Christ from the prayer, arguing the line excluded other beliefs held by veterans, KHOU-TV in Houston reported.
On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes disagreed, writing the government cannot "gag citizens when it says it is in the interest of national security, and it cannot do it in some bureaucrat's notion of cultural homogeneity," according to a report in the Houston Chronicle.
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.