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September 7th, 2012
06:28 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, September 7

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: Catholic bishop convicted of shielding priest
A judge in Kansas City, Missouri, has sentenced a Catholic bishop to two years on probation for failure to report suspected child abuse, officials said Thursday. Bishop Robert W. Finn, 59, is the highest-ranking Catholic official to be convicted during the church's long sexual abuse scandal. Finn won't serve any jail time or pay a fine, the Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney's office said. The misdemeanor charge had a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a fine of as much as $1,000.

CNN: Conventions leave atheists asking: What political party represents me?
This convention season has not been good for atheists. The word "God" was reinserted in the Democratic platform after it had been removed. A plan to raise atheist billboards in the convention cities was stymied by opponents. And though there were preachers and rabbis and other religious leaders opening and closing each day of each convention, there wasn’t an avowed atheist talking up unbelief on either convention’s speaking list. The political lockout has left many nonbelievers asking, “What political party represents me?”

CNN: Dems: God never left our party
Heads are bowed in prayer inside room 211 at the Charlotte Convention Center. Last night, Democrats put the word 'God' back into their party platform following some strong criticism. For the folks at this daily prayer session though, God and the party never parted ways. Delegates here are fine tuning the message that you can have deep religious convictions and still vote for a Democrat. It's a puzzle the party has been trying to crack for years.

CNN iReport: Mormon Democrats gather at DNC, push back on Mormon GOP image
Democrats make up only 7 percent of Utah’s Mormon community, but the small minority came out in full force Tuesday night at an LDS Democrats event in Charlotte, N.C. The Odyssey Network reports that “LDS Democrats, many of whom were formerly Republican, say the Democratic Party now best represents their core values, including caring for the most vulnerable in society.”

CNN: Richard Dawkins: Evolution is 'not a controversial issue'
Atheist. Biologist. Writer. Thinker. Richard Dawkins has developed an international reputation of spreading the word that evolution happened and that there is no "intelligent design" or higher being, as you might gather from the title of his book "The God Delusion." But no matter what you think about his convictions, his ideas have gone viral – including the word "meme." CNN caught up with Dawkins while he was passing through Atlanta earlier this year. His next U.S. tour is in October.

CNN: As sex trade increases around conventions, faith-based groups step up efforts
It’s 10 p.m. in Charlotte’s trendy NoDa district, and a handful of women and one man have hunkered down over French press coffee and pastries. These customers have gathered at Amelie’s, a 24-hour French bakery, with a serious mission. They want to end human trafficking. As volunteers for Compassion to Act, a faith-based nonprofit, they meet regularly to discuss how to rescue and restore the lives of human trafficking victims. But with the Democratic National Convention gathered just down the road this week, they and other groups have stepped up their efforts.

Tweet of the Day:

Enlightening Reads:

Huffington Post: Cardinal Timothy Dolan's Benedictions At RNC And DNC
Offering a benediction to close the Democratic National Convention, Cardinal Timothy Dolan largely stuck to a similar script as he did when praying in front of Republicans at their convention last week, with two notable exceptions. "We ask your benediction on those waiting to be born, that they may be welcomed and protected," Dolan, who as the Archbishop of New York and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has spoken out strongly against abortion, said at the DNC. And making what seemed to be a allusion to same-sex marriage, which President Barack Obama and the DNC have endorsed, Dolan said: "Show us anew that happiness is found only in respecting the laws of nature and of nature’s God.”

The Jerusalem Post: Muslims, Jews gather in Paris for interfaith parley
Moshe Kantor, the president of the European Jewish Congress, told Jewish and Muslim leaders on Tuesday that “an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us,” referring to recent rulings in Europe against circumcision and ritual slaughter. Speaking at the opening session of the Second Gathering of European Jewish and Muslim Leaders in Paris, Kantor added that such attacks were against “all people of faith,” and contradicted not only the principle of free expression but also the very basis of modern European society.

Religion News Service: Black pastors move to counter new voter ID laws
African-American clergy are joining forces with civil rights groups to push for increased voter registration ahead of the November election, spurred on by new voter laws they say restrict opportunities for minorities to enter the voting booth.

Huffington Post: Pamela Geller, Anti-Muslim Activist, Blasts National Geographic Museum Exhibit For Romanticizing Islam
Anti-Muslim organizer Pamela Geller has joined forces with Justice Department attorney and author, J. Christian Adams, in a scathing critique of a National Geographic Museum exhibit on the contributions of Muslim scientists, the Washington City Paper reports.

TIME: Everything You Need to Know About Lecrae, the Christian Rapper Tearing Up the Charts
An evangelical Christian rapper has taken over the iTunes hip-hop/rap chart. Three of the top 10 spots, including slots one and two, have belonged to Lecrae ever since his new album, Gravity, dropped on Sept. 4. With the deluxe version of the album atop the chart all week and the regular rendition sidling right behind it in the second position, Lecrae is expected to sell 60,000 copies in his first week, easily a first for a Christian rapper.

Opinions of the Day:

CNN: My Take: When it comes to 'God' in our political platforms, less is more
Stephen Prothero, Boston University religion scholar and author of "The American Bible: How Our Words Unite, Divide, and Define a Nation," discusses how the Republican and Democratic parties have used God as a “‘prop’ of our politics” during the 2012 presidential race.

CNN: My Take: Obama pledged to dial down the culture wars. What happened?
Michael Sean Winters, writer for the National Catholic Reporter’s blog "Distinctly Catholic" and author of "God's Right Hand: How Jerry Falwell Made God a Republican and Baptized the American Right,"

Join the conversation…

CNN: Rising anti-Islamic sentiment in America troubles Muslims
When the nation pauses to remember 9/11 next week, a group of Tennesseans will gather at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Franklin for a commemoration. But it will be more than that. On the program, called "The Threat in Our Backyard," is a lecture on Islam in public schools and a short film on Sharia finance. It's a program organized by people who feel the American way of life is threatened by Islam – in particular, Sharia, or Islamic law. Valarie Kaur, a legal advocate and hate crimes specialist, says proponents of anti-Sharia bills are battling an imaginary threat, and blames tough economic times and an amplification of hateful speech for incidents like the temple shooting and the momentum behind the anti-Sharia campaign.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. The truth

    Dear Atheists, we ex-muslims are waiting for you guys to get over Christianity and start waging war against Islam for a change. Yeah, sure it’s really fun and all bashing the Bible, fundies, priests, young earthers, the pope, etc, but really don’t you guys think that it’s time to shift at least some attention to Islam?

    September 11, 2012 at 10:58 am |
  2. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things

    September 8, 2012 at 7:49 am |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but you assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book might help you overcome this problem:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...
      by the Alzheimer's Disease Society

      September 8, 2012 at 8:28 am |
    • just sayin

      There is a joy and wonderment in prayer know to just a few. Know that as this day continues that joy is there for you. God bless

      September 8, 2012 at 8:35 am |
    • Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

      See prayer change lives at bagslap.com.

      September 8, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
  3. I killed Jesus

    http://disgustingmedia.com/videos/5/one-man-one-jar

    September 8, 2012 at 12:32 am |
  4. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    September 7, 2012 at 7:45 pm |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but you assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book might help you overcome this problem:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...
      by the Alzheimer's Disease Society

      September 7, 2012 at 10:25 pm |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but you assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book might help you overcome this problem:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...
      by the Alzheimer's Disease Society

      September 7, 2012 at 10:28 pm |
  5. 47 year old virgin male

    REVELATION CHAPTER SIX And he open the fifth seal ,and I saw under the altar the souls of those who were slain for the word of GOD and for the testimony they held and they cried out with a loud voice ,how long O LORD holy and true do you not judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth and white robes were given unto them and it was said unto them that they should rest a little season until their fellow servant and their brethren should be slain as they were should be fulfilled.Under racial profiling many BLACK AMERICANS were arrested and were either martyred within the prison system or were deported to AFRICA ,where many of them were martyred there and were buried in mass graves in both the SUDAN and in the CONGO . Mean while a new demonic BLACK AMERICA has arisen from both the black antebellum and hiphop nation and is based stereotypical images of low class ,poverty stricken and criminally prone blacks and has replace the black human population in AMERICA and in AFRICA who were exterminated during the BLACK HOLOCAUST during years between nineteen sixth eight and nineteen ninty three and two thousand and 0ne.

    September 7, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • William Demuth

      If this was parody, well done.

      If this was for real, sit still and let me pee in your ear, it's obvious your brain is on fire

      September 7, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • mama kindless

      LOL@William.

      It doesn't matter if it's real or a parody. Because everyone knows whoever wrote that Revelation mess was high as a kite and crashed their camel into a lake of bath salts or worse.

      September 7, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • no gods

      Not a cool story bro, it has no aliens.

      September 7, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Fluffy the Gerbil of Doom

      We are nearly identical. "race" is skin deep.
      http://racerelations.about.com/b/2011/01/29/how-a-genetic-mutation-led-to-the-white-race.htm

      September 7, 2012 at 10:51 pm |
  6. tuvia

    מלחמה בלתי נגמרת

    September 7, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  7. tuvia

    ******************************************************************

    B"H

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=947by3X6_RU&w=640&h=360]

    DOES HE AND THE REST OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE

    WANT THE TORAH?

    DO THEY WANT THE ISRAELITES, THE LEVIHIM AND THE KOHANIM AND DOES THE WORLD AND WILL YOU PLEASE
    ASK MR. ROMNEY, AND HIS CONVENTION THE FOLLOWING QUESTION.

    WE THE ISRAELITES, THE LEVIHIM AND THE KOHANIM
    WE WANT TO GET PERMISSION FROM THE WORLD TO
    BUILD THE 3RD TEMPLE.

    WE WANT TO ADVANCE THE EDUCATION TO THE WORLD
    THROUGH THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

    THE TEMPLE INSITUTE IN JERSUSALEM WILL HELP THE
    MINISTRY OF EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES WITH
    PERMISSION.

    MR. ROMNEY THE FOLLOWING QUESTION IS DIRECTED TO YOU.

    DO YOU MOURN THE DESTRUCTION OF THE SECOND TEMPLE AND WILL YOU ALLOW THE ISRAELITES, THE LEVIHIM AND THE KOHANIM TO SERVE HASHEM IN THE LAND

    PLEASE ASK THE CANDIDATE THE FOLLOWING QUESTION.

    JONATHAN POLLARD HAS SPENT ENOUGH TIME IN PRISON.

    IT IS TIME THAT HE IS PARDONED.

    WILL THE PRESIDENT PARDON JONTATHAN POLLARD ON

    THE PLATFORM OF HUMANITARIANISM

    WILL THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AGREE TO LET
    JONATHAN POLLARD GO BACK TO ISRAEL
    WITH HIS WIFE ESTER AND LIVE THEIR LIVES IN
    ISRAEL ONCE IF POSSIBLE THE PRESIDENT
    AND THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AGREE TO THIS.
    LET MY PEOPLE GO. PLEASE PARDON JONATHAN POLLARD
    MR. PRESIDENT.

    THANK YOU,

    TUVIA

    September 7, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • old ben

      This Jonathan Pollard is a traitor to the U.S. And a highly unstable lout to boot. Keep him locked up.

      September 7, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • Fluffy the Gerbil of Doom

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlnnWbkMlbg&w=640&h=360]

      September 7, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
  8. tuvia

    *
    **************

    President Obama's Cairo speech
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TyBZhTaf1oU&w=640&h=360]

    WORLD VS ISRAEL. HILLARY CLINTON-THIS IS A MESSAGE FOR YOU – LET MY PEOPLE GO. FREE JONATHAN POLLARD NOW. LET MY PEOPLE GO BARRAK HUSSEIN OBAMA – NOW!
    The Land of Israel is the Promised Land given to our forefathers Abraham Isaac and Jacob and is given to us, their seed, as an everlasting
    speech
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TyBZhTaf1oU&w=640&h=360]
    PLEASE PLAY ON YOUR NETWORK NOW
    THANK YOU IN ADVANCE

    September 7, 2012 at 9:54 am |
    • William Demuth

      What a piece of dung this man is.

      Pollard is a traitor and needs to be gutted and buried in a pile of pig intestines

      September 7, 2012 at 10:06 am |
    • William Demuth

      Perhaps if you bathed and cleaned your nasty self up a bit, people might percieve you as being more than an idiot.

      Thye would be wrong, but at least then you wouldn't be such a nasty looking one.

      September 7, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • Kathleen

      William, meat that is stuffed in pig's intestines are called hotdogs. Aren't you evolved enough to comprehend this fact?

      September 7, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • William Demuth

      Kathleen

      Actually it's Bratwurst, but a sausage by any other name is quite fine.

      September 7, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • WASP

      @TUVIA: you do know ofcourse it was anerican intervention that permitted ISREAL to exsist in the first place. after WW2 the middle eastern countries didn't want a jewish state, they fought against it being established however america over-rid their protests and encouraged the UNITED NATIONS to recognize isreal as the jewish homeland and established that portion of land as their country.

      america made that country; GOD had nothing to do with it.

      September 7, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Fluffy the Gerbil of Doom

      yahweh is a total fraud.
      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlnnWbkMlbg&w=640&h=360]

      September 7, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
  9. William Demuth

    Let us review the previous year or so as to see the status of the cause

    We have another priest convicted in the buggery scandal, inching higher up in the conspiracy

    We have a REPUBLICAN ticket without any Protestants on it.

    We have overthrown Wacky Kaddafi.

    The right slapped the Evangelicals in the face and nominated a MORMON for commander in chief and a Catholic for VP.

    We had Democratic convention goers actively resisting the re-entry of God into the DNC platform.

    We have a rift developing between Israel and the US, with a president pressuring them for PEACE.

    Bin Laden is dead and we have left Iraq.

    So far we have managed to stay out of Syria and have pushed the burden onto the Europeans.

    Militant non-believers are showing up in the press EVERY DAY!

    We have stopped pretending we can save the Afghans, and instead are focusing on quietly killing them.

    Repressed groups like Gays and minority religions are rising up and WINNING in the cultural war.

    The major religions are deeply divided over economic fairness and immigration

    It must really be miserable to be a Fundie, they are getting hammered on all fronts. With this rate of decline, they will be supplanted in the near future! The cause of the non-believers has seen more progress in two years than the ten that came before it.

    September 7, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • Atheists are bad liars

      Is there no end to your narcissism and deception?

      September 7, 2012 at 9:53 am |
    • old ben

      You're right William. Things could be a lot worse.

      And "Atheists are bad liars" – your idiocy is showing.

      September 7, 2012 at 12:21 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.