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August 28th, 2012
05:29 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Tuesday, August 28

By Arielle Hawkins, CNN

Here's the Belief Blog’s morning rundown of the top faith-angle stories from around the United States and around the world. Click the headlines for the full stories.

From the Blog:

CNN: San Francisco archbishop apologizes after DUI arrest
The newly appointed archbishop of San Francisco apologized Monday after being arrested Saturday in San Diego on an allegation of driving under the influence. "I apologize for my error in judgment and feel shame for the disgrace I have brought upon the church and myself," Archbishop-designate Salvatore Cordileone said in a written statement.

CNN: Hate crimes trial against Amish begins
Federal prosecutors are expected to argue that an Amish sect leader, accused of orchestrating beard-cutting attacks against fellow Amish men, was operating a cult out of his family compound in rural Ohio. The sect leader, Samuel Mullet Sr., is one of 16 Amish men and women charged with federal hate crimes in the beard-cutting attacks last year. The trial began Monday with jury selection in federal court in Cleveland. Mullet and several of his sons, who were arrested in December, are among those on trial.

CNN: Bill Nye slams creationism
Famed TV scientist Bill Nye is slamming creationism in a new online video for Big Think titled "Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children." "Denial of evolution is unique to the United States," Nye begins in a YouTube video posted on Thursday. The video quickly picked up steam over the weekend and as of Monday morning had been viewed more than 1,100,000 times. Nye – a mechanical engineer and television personality best known for his program, "Bill Nye the Science Guy" – said the United States has great capital in scientific knowledge and "when you have a portion of the population that doesn't believe in it, it holds everyone back."

CNN: Atheist group removes billboards targeting presidential candidates' religious faith
An atheist group that raised a pair of billboards taking aim at the presidential candidates’ religion at the site of next month’s Democratic National Convention has pulled the signs after what the group called a “large volume of threats.” The billboards, sponsored by American Atheists, took aim at Mormonism and Christianity and went up this month in Charlotte, North Carolina, which will play host to the Democratic convention.

Tweet of the Day:

Enlightening Reads:

Tablet Magazine: GOP Convention’s Rabbi-in-Chief
With all the speculation in recent weeks over whether Mitt Romney would tap a fellow Mormon to deliver a prayer at the Republican National Convention, one never would have guessed that the opening invocation would be delivered by a rabbi. But on Tuesday afternoon, when the convention makes its belated beginning after being postponed due to inclement weather, Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik will be the clergyman kicking off the proceedings.

USA Today: Cardinal Dolan to Romney, Obama: Pledge to play nice
The deeply traditionalist Catholic Knights of Columbus want GOP contender Mitt Romney, President Obama and their running mates to all sign a civility pledge. Handing out the invite: Cardinal Timothy Dolan. Dolan, archbishop of New York and president of the U.S. bishops, who will give the closing prayer for the RNC and has offered/pushed the DNC to invite him as well, says the goal is...”so that the upcoming campaign will remain focused on the critical issues facing our nation, and not on personal attacks.”

Huffington Post: Seminary Debt Rising: Clergy Postpone Starting Families, Face Bankruptcy
National data from The Center for the Study of Theological Education at Auburn Theological Seminary indicates both the number of students entering seminary with debt and the amounts they have to pay back upon entering the workforce are increasing substantially. It is no longer unusual for seminary graduates to leave school with $70,000 to $80,000 in debt, says Sharon Miller, associate director of the center. A separate study on the impact of educational debt on Catholic vocations showed that rising levels of student loans are forcing some religious orders to make tough choices about prospective sisters, brothers and priests.

Religion News Service: Lily Dale, N.Y.: A gated community for spiritualists
The lobby and the wide front porch of the Lily Dale’s Maplewood Hotel are typical of a place built in 1888, except for the sign that reads “No readings, healing circles or seances in this area please.”
For 133 years, Lily Dale has been home to the Lily Dale Assembly, a religious organization of mediums and healers who claim to communicate messages from those who have passed on to those still living on the Earthly plane.

Quote of the Day:

Consistently, it's been shown that spirituality is associated with health, greater academic achievement and, of great importance to teens, more meaning and purpose…spirituality, globally, helps children and adolescents to thrive.

Lisa Miller, director of clinical psychology at Columbia University, researches the effects of spirituality on children’s development. She offers her views regarding Camp Quest Northwest, a self-described summer camp for “children from atheist, agnostic, humanist, and other freethinking families.”

Join the conversation…

CNN: 8 ways faith will matter at the Republican National Convention
For the next four days, the eyes of the political world will be on Tampa, Florida, the site of the Republican National Convention (which will now get started Tuesday, after Tropical Storm Isaac cancelled Monday's events). Though politics will be the name of the game, it's a safe bet that religion will also play a major role. The convention opens with a prayer from a Hispanic evangelical leader and closes with a benediction from a Catholic cleric who's sometimes called "America's pope."

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Agnostic Atheism is Healthy for Kids and Grown-Ups Too!

    mama kindless news update: mama kindless for the first time in many years fell in love with a man named Bill Nye just yesterday. now this famous Mr. Nye is too young for me, but I guess you could say we have a spiritual affinity. my goodness.

    It's really best for all people including children to have an agnostic approach to god, and an atheistic approach to all religion. It keeps things simple for kids, and let's them be all that they can be. They just need to be taught that some things, like all religion, are just made up by salesmen and politicians from long ago; and that other things, like god, we really don't know a damn thing about.

    Atheists have strong minds, so you don't see them running and hiding their misdeeds within some religion (and by doing so, disserving society).

    So instead of praying to make-believe people, get a good cup of tea and go on and sit down and collect your damn thoughts. My goodness.

    mama kindless

    August 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
  2. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    Chad has expressed an interest in pre-life. This is a short reading list for Chad:

    1)
    Prevolutionary dynamics and the origin of evolution.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2567469/

    2)
    From Self-Assembled Vesicles to Protocells
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2890201/

    3)
    Multilevel Selection in Models of Prebiotic Evolution II: A Direct Comparison of Compartmentalization and Spatial Self-Organization
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2757730/

    1) Is concerned with the emergence of evolutionary dynamics before the emergence of replicators.
    2) Looks at compartmentalization of replicators
    3) Also looks at the compartmentalization of replicators – two different ways.

    Terminology is slippery. The PNAS paper (1) defines "pre-life" and "life" earlier than I would. I think of pre-replicator chemical systems that include evolutionary dynamics as sort of pre-pre-life. The other two papers concern replicators as they begin to look more like life. This is what I would call pre-life.

    August 28, 2012 at 8:54 am |
  3. Anti-Troll

    Science has cured more diseases, fed more people, healed more of the infirmed, and has advanced the quality and length of life far more than prayer ever has, or ever will - proven–

    August 28, 2012 at 7:19 am |
    • nope

      @anti troll
      nope

      August 28, 2012 at 7:23 am |
    • Anti-Troll

      What do you mean "nope"? How was smallpox eradicated from this planet? Was it prayer? NOPE, it was science. got anything else?

      August 28, 2012 at 7:25 am |
    • nope

      @anti troll
      nope
      It was prayer first.
      you are wrong.

      August 28, 2012 at 7:37 am |
    • Anti-Troll

      Do you have an insurance card in your wallet?

      August 28, 2012 at 7:40 am |
    • viking raider

      What do you have in your wallet?

      August 28, 2012 at 7:55 am |
    • Anti-Troll

      Capital One of course lol, AND an insurance card.

      August 28, 2012 at 8:10 am |
    • IfOnly

      If you atheists would become Christians and prayed, The Lord would change the mutation of viruses.

      August 28, 2012 at 8:48 am |
    • Anti-Troll

      You don't seem to realize that most Atheists HAVE a religious background. How do you think we bacame Atheists in the first place? Simple answer, we actually read the 2000 year old book filled with 3000 year old stories.
      Have you thrown out your insurance card yet? You better, if you think "god" can supplant science when you fall ill or become the victim of an accident.

      August 28, 2012 at 8:59 am |
    • truth be trolled

      IfOnly blabbed: "If you atheists would become Christians and prayed, The Lord would change the mutation of viruses."
      (EX ENLIGHTENED FORTUNE COOKIE WRITER ALERT!)

      August 28, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
  4. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    August 28, 2012 at 7:10 am |
    • TROLL ALERT

      Please don't feed it.

      August 28, 2012 at 9:22 am |
    • nope

      @troll alert
      nope

      August 28, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • TROLL.

      People with dementia can repeat themselves over and over again, by telling a repeat a word or phrase,

      August 28, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • You're brainwashed!

      It just shows how loopy Christians like this are and why you should run away in the other direction. Keep up the great work of showing what's wrong with your religion......you're brainwashed!

      August 28, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry, "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things".

      The evidence against your statements about prayer and atheism is overwhelming. Perhaps I can help by knowing how you arrived at these falsehoods?

      August 28, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • truth be told

      @hal

      how many additional answers do you want?

      August 28, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
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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.