By Dan Merica, CNN
Washington (CNN)–Six of the nine Supreme Court justices attended the annual Red Mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington on Sunday. The event’s speakers spoke about using faith in decision-making but largely stayed away from the controversial issues the court will face in the coming months.
Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Stephen Breyer, Justice Antonin Scalia, Justice Clarence Thomas, Justice Anthony Kennedy and Justice Elena Kagan all attended the 60th annual Mass. This was Kagan’s first Red Mass.
Having six justices in attendance ties a record set in 2009. The only justices to not attend this year were Sonia Sotomayor and Samuel Alito, both of whom are Catholic, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who is Jewish. Kagan and Breyer, both of whom were in attendance, are also Jewish.
The annual Mass is an event put on by the Archdiocese of Washington and the John Carroll Society and aims to bring people together to pray for the members of the judiciary before the court begins hearing cases each year. It’s called the Red Mass because of the color of the garment worn by clergy.
By Alan Miller, Special to CNN
Editor’s note: Alan Miller is Director of The New York Salon and Co-Founder of London's Old Truman Brewery. He is speaking at The Battle of Ideas at London's Barbican in October.
The increasingly common refrain that "I'm spiritual, but not religious," represents some of the most retrogressive aspects of contemporary society. The spiritual but not religious "movement" - an inappropriate term as that would suggest some collective, organizational aspect - highlights the implosion of belief that has struck at the heart of Western society.
Spiritual but not religious people are especially prevalent in the younger population in the United States, although a recent study has argued that it is not so much that people have stopped believing in God, but rather have drifted from formal institutions.
By Dan Gilgoff and Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editors
(CNN) – The Vatican on Friday appeared to push back on a recently publicized piece of papyrus that appears to show an early Christian referring to Jesus' wife, with its newspaper calling the fragment “a fake.”
“Substantial reasons would lead us to conclude that the papyrus is actually a clumsy counterfeit,” the Vatican’s newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, said in a Friday editorial by the newspaper’s editor.
“In other words, in any case it is a fake,” wrote L'Osservatore Romano editor-in-chief Gian Maria Vian.
The fragment referring to Jesus wife was written in Coptic, a language used by Egyptian Christians, and says in part, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife ..."
By Jessica Ravitz, CNN
(CNN) – A Utah woman unwittingly started a grassroots campaign when an e-mail she sent to her five children and a handful of friends urging a day of prayer and fasting for Mitt Romney started making the Mormon rounds.
Mona Williams, a Price, Utah, member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, wrote last Sunday evening to tell people closest to her how frustrated she is with the state of the country.
“A lot of my frustration is because I feel I don’t know what to do to really make a change. Well, this time I do,” she wrote. “I am asking you to join me and my family on Sunday Sept. 30 by fasting and praying for Mitt Romney. That he will be blessed in the debates,” the first of which is next Wednesday.
(CNN) - Onlookers might think you're checking stocks, watching clips of "Honey Boo Boo" or reading news out of Libya. But on the subway, in the doctor’s office, under a beach cabana – with the right gadget, God’s word can be with you.
Making the Bible accessible and shareable is what YouVersion’s Bible app is all about. About 300 versions of the Bible can be downloaded for free to smartphones and tablets, allowing people speaking 144 different languages to get their fix of Scripture.
“A lot of people in the U.S. have six or seven Bibles in the house and never use them,” says Bobby Gruenewald, 36, the man behind this mobile Christian mission. “Our goal was to help people engage with the Bible.”
If numbers are any indication, mission accomplished.
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: Pew poll: Obama opens up lead over Romney among Catholics
President Barack Obama has opened up a significant lead among Catholic voters, a crucial swing voting bloc, according to a recent Pew poll. Obama leads opponent Mitt Romney among Catholic voters by 54% to 39%, according to the survey, conducted from September 12 to 16 by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press.
CNN: Photo of woman with facial hair leads to conversation, understanding
A picture of a woman with facial hair wearing a turban posted to the social media site Reddit has garnered a firestorm of Internet reaction and has taught at least two Ohio college students lessons in graciousness, humanities and religious studies. The picture was posted five days ago with the caption, "I'm not sure what to conclude from this."A 20-year old college student, who asked to remain anonymous, says one of his friends took the photo at a library at The Ohio State University. He's "not really sure why," but after he and his friends shared the picture amongst themselves, he posted it to Reddit.
From Stan Wilson, CNN
Los Angeles (CNN) - Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man allegedly behind the inflammatory film "Innocence of Muslims," was ordered held without bail Thursday after being arrested in California and accused of violating his probation.
"He engaged in a likely pattern of deception both to his probation officers and the court," Judge Suzanne Segal said in issuing her ruling.
By Stephanie Gallman, CNN
(CNN) – A picture of a woman with facial hair wearing a turban posted to the social media site Reddit has garnered a firestorm of Internet reaction and has taught at least two Ohio college students lessons in graciousness, humanities and religious studies.
The picture was posted five days ago with the caption, "I'm not sure what to conclude from this."
A 20-year old college student, who asked to remain anonymous, says one of his friends took the photo at a library at The Ohio State University.
He's "not really sure why," but after he and his friends shared the picture amongst themselves, he posted it to Reddit.
By Dana Garrett, CNN
(CNN) – As Jews gathered together at sundown Wednesday to break the Yom Kippur fast, in some homes it wasn’t just food that was being shared, but also opinion on the rising tension between the leaders of the United States and Israel over the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear program.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who spoke Thursday before the U.N. General Assembly in New York, has been pressing the U.S. administration to establish a clear “red line” that, if crossed by Iran, would signal military intervention.
President Barack Obama has rejected that idea, saying there’s still time for sanctions to work while insisting that the United States will not allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon.
CNN's Erin Burnett talks to Pastor Robert Jeffress about the Evangelical vote being key to a Romney victory.
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.