By Dan Merica, CNN
Washington (CNN) – At campaign events these days, Mitt Romney often says that if he is elected president, he will emphasize the role of God in American society and will not “take God out of the public square.”
That kind of rhetoric is a departure from earlier less God-focused versions of the Republican candidate’s stump speech and his early apprehension with discussing his Mormon faith.
According to Mark DeMoss, Romney’s adviser to the evangelical community, such lines are designed to create a contrast with a Democratic Party that had to fight to get God into its platform at its recent convention.
“I will not take God out of my heart, I will not take God out of the public square, and I will not take it out of the platform of my party,” Romney has been saying in his stump speech since the Democratic platform fight this month.
By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor
(CNN) - Pope Benedict XVI arrived in Beirut, Lebanon, on Friday for a previously scheduled trip as anti-American protests and violence spurred by an anti-Islamic film roiled the Mideast, including in Lebanon.
Police killed one person in Tripoli, Lebanon, on Friday after a group of armed men stormed a restaurant amid protests in the city, Lebanese security forces told CNN.
Editor's note: Bill Horan is president of Operation Blessing International.
By Bill Horan, Special to CNN
While Americans and the media convened, debated and celebrated in Tampa and Charlotte in recent weeks, thousands of Americans in southeastern Louisiana became homeless, finding themselves living without electricity, clean water or other basic necessities after Hurricane Isaac hit.
Mitt Romney and President Obama, along with the national media, have come and gone from the region. What’s left behind is total devastation and a long road of rebuilding – again.
Yet this could be the end of the road for many families living there.
By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
(CNN) –Violence in the Muslim world over an anti-Islamic film that appears to have been produced by a Coptic Christian is bringing uncomfortable focus on the religious tradition.
A staffer on the film, which has provoked anti-American protests and violence across the Muslim world, said he believed that the filmmaker is a Coptic Christian, information that has sent shock waves through the Coptic community.
The staffer said the filmmaker told him he'd been to Alexandria, Egypt, to raise money for the film, suggesting that Copts were helping finance it. Media in Egypt, where Copt-Muslim relations are tense, jumped on the news.
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:
A Palestinian man holds a placard praising Islam's prophet Mohammed during a demonstration against the film on Wednesday in front of the United Nations headquarters in Gaza City.
CNN New details emerge of anti-Islam film's mystery producer
Some time in the summer, a small theater in Los Angeles screened a movie to which hardly anyone came. It was a clunky film filled with scenes in a desert and in tents. The characters were cartoonish; the dialogue gauche. The actors who'd responded to a July 2011 casting call thought they were making an adventure film set 2,000 years ago called "Desert Warrior." That's how Backstage magazine and other acting publications described it. The American-made movie, it turns out, was hardly an innocent Arabian Desert action flick.
Iraqi protesters burn Israeli and U.S. flags during a protest Thursday. The U.S. ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens, and three others were killed during a protest outside the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on Tuesday.
CNN: Jewish groups mad about initial reports on anti-Islam film
Jewish groups are upset that the initial reporting about the anti-Islam movie known as "Innocence of Muslims" depicted the film as being financed by a group of Jewish donors. The groups say the reporting was irresponsible and even dangerous. "We are greatly concerned that this false notion that an Israeli Jew and 100 Jewish backers were behind the film now has legs and is gathering speed around the world," Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League said Thursday. "In an age where conspiracy theories, especially ones of an anti-Semitic nature, explode on the Internet in a matter of minutes, it is crucial for those news organizations who initially reported on his identity to correct the record."
By Lateef Mungin
(CNN) - Jewish groups are upset that the initial reporting about the anti-Islam movie known as "Innocence of Muslims" depicted the film as being financed by a group of Jewish donors.
The groups say the reporting was irresponsible and even dangerous.
"We are greatly concerned that this false notion that an Israeli Jew and 100 Jewish backers were behind the film now has legs and is gathering speed around the world," Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League said Thursday. "In an age where conspiracy theories, especially ones of an anti-Semitic nature, explode on the Internet in a matter of minutes, it is crucial for those news organizations who initially reported on his identity to correct the record."
The Simon Wiesenthal Center also blasted the early media coverage of the story.
The center said Thursday it is "deeply troubled that the project was initially falsely and widely depicted as a project of an American- Israeli and that the $5 million was raised by 100 Jews. We remain deeply worried that those initial media reports are being used by Islamist extremists to further fan the violent anti-Semitism that is a part of that sub-culture of hate."
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.