By Tom Cohen, CNN
(CNN) – A total of 250 clerics in the Boston Archdiocese have been accused of child abuse in recent decades, according to information made public Thursday by Cardinal Sean O'Malley in an attempt to help resolve an issue tearing at the core of Catholicism.
O'Malley said the archdiocese posted online the names of 159 accused clergy members, while there were 91 others who also faced some level of accusation but were not named for various reasons.
An investigation that began after the crisis over sexual abuse of children in the Boston Archdiocese fully emerged in 2002 has pored over records dating back more than 60 years, with subsequent decisions on who to name based on the nature of the accusations and other factors, according to O'Malley.
By Blaine Zuckerman, PEOPLE.com
(PEOPLE.com) - Rose McGowan's first nine years were anything but traditional. They were spent in the Children of God sect, a group that extolled the virtues of free love and prepared for the second coming of Jesus.
Although it proved a harrowing experience - she fled with her family, she says, once the cult began advocating child-adult sexual relations - as the setting at first "was really idyllic," remembers the actress, 38, who rose to fame on TV's Charmed and now stars in Conan the Barbarian 3D.
"I grew up in pastoral settings" - specifically, the Italian countryside, where her parent were members of the local branch of the Children of God. But McGowan, who was born in Florence, knew instinctively that she didn't belong in such a place.
By, Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
(CNN)– As the city of New York prepares to remember the 10th anniversary of 9/11, religious leaders are raising concerns over the lack of clergy participating in the anniversary events.
"Utterly disappointed and surprised," Fernado Cabrera a New York City councilman and the pastor of New Life Outreach International church in the Bronx, said over the decision not to include any clergy in the ceremony.
"There's certain things that government cannot do, and answering questions of meaning of 'Why are we going through this?' and 'Where am I going to get strength from?' - those are existential questions that can only be answered from a spiritual aspect," Cabrera said.
"I'm telling you I saw it first hand, the power of prayer," he added of his time at ground zero on September 11, 2001.
By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor
(CNN) - The Israeli ambassador to the United States hosted a dinner celebrating the Muslim holy month of Ramadan on Thursday, marking the first time an ambassador from the Jewish state has hosted such a dinner in the United States, the embassy said.
Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren hosted the dinner at his residence, with about 65 guests in attendance, including imams, rabbis and officials from the White House, Congress and the State Department, according to Israeli Embassy spokesman Lior Weintraub.
Oren said the unusual dinner is fitting at a time when the future of the Middle East is uncertain, as the Arab Spring has unseated regimes in Tunisia and Egypt and as Libya appears poised on the brink of a revolution.
By Ashley Fantz, CNN
(CNN) - Two young men who last fall sued Atlanta megachurch leader Bishop Eddie Long for allegedly manipulating them into having sex when they were teens are speaking out against the pastor for the first time since settling with him out of court.
On Wednesday, Jamal Parris and Spencer LeGrande, now in their early 20s, gave an exclusive interview to CNN Atlanta affiliate WSB, saying that they are haunted by their experiences with Long and that they are writing a tell-all book about what they say happened between them and the powerful pastor.
Read more about the Eddie Long scandal
Last September, Parris, LeGrande and two other young men filed suit alleging Long “uses monetary funds from the accounts of New Birth and other corporate and non-profit corporate accounts to entice the young men with cars, clothes, jewelry, and electronics.” The accusations were particularly controversial because Long, who is married, has preached passionately against homosexuality for years.
By Gabe LaMonica, CNN
(CNN) - To the world he gave a glimpse of greatness, to Brazil he gave hope, and to God he attributed everything.
On May 1, 1994, a day that was followed by three days of national mourning in Brazil, Ayrton Senna died behind the wheel of a Formula One vehicle when his car slammed into a wall off a high-speed turn on the track in Imola, Italy. He was 34 when he was killed while leading the San Marino Grand Prix.
His legacy as one of the world's greatest race car drivers in history lives on in a film directed by Asif Kapadia.
By Katia Hetter, Special to CNN
(CNN) - While the Bible Belt is known for its devotion to traditional values, Southerners don't do so well on one key family value: They are more likely to get divorced than people living in the Northeast.
Southern men and women had higher rates of divorce in 2009 than their counterparts in other parts of the country: 10.2 per 1,000 for men and 11.1 per 1,000 for women, according to a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau released Thursday.
By comparison, men and women in the Northeast had the lowest rates of divorce, 7.2 and 7.5 per 1,000, which is also lower than the national divorce rate of 9.2 for men and 9.7 for women.
"In the South, there are higher rates of marriage and higher rates of divorce for men and women," said Diana Elliott, a family demographer with the U.S. Census Bureau and co-author of the new report. "In the Northeast, you have people who are delaying first marriages, and consequently there are lower rates of marriage and lower rates of divorce."
From Hussein Saddique, CNN
New York (CNN) - New York-area Muslims and civil liberties advocates called Wednesday for investigations and hearings after a report said that in the years since the 9/11 attacks, city police have carried out covert surveillance on Muslims with the help of the Central Intelligence Agency.
"We need the (New York) City Council to hold hearings and to investigate these revelations," said Ramzi Kassem, an associate professor of law at the City University of New York. He supervises CUNY's Creating Law Enforcement Accountability & Responsibility project, which aims to meet the legal needs of New York City Muslims affected by counterterrorism policies.
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.