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November 9th, 2012
04:55 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, November 09

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: Romney’s loss closes out ‘Mormon moment’
Mitt Romney’s defeat appears to close out a years-long “Mormon moment,” a period of national fascination with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It has also provoked Mormon disappointment; Romney would have been first Latter-day Saint in the White House, culminating a decades-long process of growing Mormon acceptance and influence.

Photo of the Day:


Photo Credit: STRDEL/AFP/Getty Images

Exiled Tibetan Buddhist monks pray as they mourn those who died in protest against Chinese rule on November 08, 2012. One of the dead Wednesday was a 15-year-old monk, who set himself alight with two other monks in a majority Tibetan region of Sichuan Province, said the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy. They cried "freedom for Tibet" and for the "return of the Dalai Lama." The other two monks, both 16, were hospitalized.

Enlightening Reads:

Huffington Post: Salvatore Cordileone, San Francisco Archbishop, Releases Statement Against Gay Marriage Victories
As one of the authors of California's same-sex marriage ban, San Francisco's newly appointed Catholic Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone is hardly a friend of the LGBT community. But after the release of his statement on the same-sex marriage victories in Maine, Maryland, Washington and Minnesota on Tuesday, anyone wondering if this guy could possibly alienate himself from the LGBT community further learned that the answer is, sadly, yes.

New York Times: Getting Into a Benefactor’s Head
Jen Shang understands the power of prayer — to open wallets. Ms. Shang, who bills herself as the only philanthropic psychologist in the world, recently advised a religious organization to tinker with a direct-mail fund-raising solicitation, to encourage potential donors to pray before deciding to give. Some religious people, Ms. Shang found, “pray and read Bibles when making a major life decision before they talk to others, think about it, meditate about it, let their emotions cool down.” The experiment paid off. In early research, the solicitation with the suggestion of prayer “significantly” increased the campaign’s response rate compared with previous appeals.

Religion News Service: American Muslims celebrate defeat of congressional critics
American Muslims are celebrating the ouster of two congressmen known for their anti-Islamic rhetoric, and heralding the outcomes as a sign that Muslim voters, at least in some districts, are a political force to be reckoned with. "These encouraging results clearly show that mainstream Americans reject anti-Muslim bigotry by candidates for public office and will demonstrate that rejection at the polls," said Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

Reuters: Czech parliament votes to return church property confiscated by communists
The Czech parliament on Thursday approved an ambitious plan to return billions of dollars worth of church property that was confiscated by the communists in a vote that represented a victory for Prime Minister Petr Necas. The law envisages handing churches land, property, and financial compensation worth about $7 billion over a period of 30 years. Under the plan, the churches would become independent from the state and gradually stop getting government financing.

Quote of the Day:

If peace is to be authentic and enduring, it must be built on the pillars of truth, justice, love and freedom, and all young men and women need to be taught above all to act truthfully and justly in love and freedom.

– Cardinal Tauran and Father Ayuso, leaders of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue

Opinion of the Day:


The American bishops staged a rigorous campaign against the White House's new contraception mandate.

CNN: My Take: Catholic bishops' election behavior threatens their authority
Vincent Miller, Gudorf Chair of Catholic Theology and Culture at the University of Dayton., argues that “By putting voters in a ‘with us or against us’ bind, some of America’s bishops have risked eroding their own authority.”

Join the conversation…

CNN: Election results raise questions about Christian right's influence
For many conservative Christian leaders, it was a nightmare scenario: Barack Obama decisively re-elected. Same-sex marriage adopted by voters in some states. Rigorously anti-abortion candidates defeated in conservative red states.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Was Lost

    Let the conversation start! http://youtu.be/wfU0f2AbLmQ

    November 9, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
  2. hippypoet

    God is an idea! Such an improbable idea that many have, to make the idea inarguable, said that the idea is beyond human comprehension. By doing so remove the need but more importantly the ability to prove gods existence and so make it an untouchable notion of truth based on an idea. How is that different from being delusional? You hold fast to an idea of an improbable, incomprehensible, and untouchable nature as if it is fact!
    Until you have tangible evidence for the existence of god, the notion of god remains in the realm of ideas.

    Qoute from –
    The Hippy Poet.
    And thats a factual statement!

    November 9, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • S. Coffee

      That's a pretty good statement you've got there. I was hoping for something to argue about, though. Damme!

      November 9, 2012 at 6:01 pm |
    • William

      hippypoet, the complexities of nature themselves cry to the existence of a creator or designer. You either do not possess an ounce of common sense or your evil nature will not allow you to submit to the Creator. You are a prime example of the fallacies of the Theory of Evolution, because evolution implies a progression to a higher state.

      November 9, 2012 at 11:48 pm |
    • LittleHero

      Evolution does not imply progression. You are ignorant – that is not all bad, you could change that if you want. What exactly makes you think that complexity requires a creator. Drop the assumptions, and crack a couple of books.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:00 am |
    • HappySimran

      " because evolution implies a progression to a higher state" – so much for my impression that this is what religion implied – progression to higher godly state!
      What is a higher state in evolution???

      November 10, 2012 at 12:07 am |
    • God's Oldest Dreamer

      Dumb futzes,

      What just really do people know about scientific methodologies? Do you know the sustainment principles of quantum physics? Do you know anything about Fractal Cosmologies and its self-similar cosmological paradigms? Do you know whether or not there truly are two paradigms of cosmologic symmetries each one sustaining the other?

      November 10, 2012 at 12:44 am |
    • hippypoet

      quiet the conversation had...

      November 10, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
  3. Christian my ass

    the behavior of these "Christians" trolls is what actually makes Jesus weep.

    November 9, 2012 at 11:17 am |
  4. niknak

    Morning all,
    Just another beautiful day without god(s).
    And without Mitt Romney........

    November 9, 2012 at 9:47 am |
    • truth never changes

      Mitt is still here and God is still here. Chances are you will be the first to go.

      November 9, 2012 at 11:19 am |
  5. WASP

    well i know this is late, but i don't care.

    "remember, remember the 5th of november, the gunpowder, treason and plot. i know of no reason why the gunpowder treason should..............ever.........be..........forgot."

    i love that movie.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:03 am |
  6. Doc Vestibule

    PRAYER REALLY CHANGED THINGS FOR DEANNA LANEY

    Deanna Laney, a devout member of the Assemblies of God Church, was fortunate enough to have God answer her prayers and speak directly to her in 2004.
    Unfortunately for her three children, 8-year-old Joshua, 6-year-old Luke and 14-month old Aaron, God's message to their Mom was straight out of the Old Testament.
    Mrs. Laney obeyed the Divine Commands and proceeded to stone her children to death.
    As of May of this year, she is back in church, a free woman

    November 9, 2012 at 8:27 am |
    • WASP

      @doc: as a parent i was hoping she would get the chair.

      November 9, 2012 at 9:07 am |
  7. Mirosal

    You'd better have mommy help you get dressed, and spo'on-feed your oatmeal. Your little yellow bus will be along soon to take you to your "special" classes.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:21 am |
    • great intellect my ass

      Miss the reply function again did we? Mensa my ass !

      November 9, 2012 at 7:27 am |
    • Mirosal

      It wasn't my doing, it's the firewall on the computers at work.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:30 am |
    • great intellect my ass

      Poor baby...

      November 9, 2012 at 7:32 am |
  8. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    November 9, 2012 at 6:55 am |
    • Mirosal

      Actually, YOU aren't healthy for children and other living things. Quit sucking up oxygen, leave some for the children and other living things, ok?

      November 9, 2012 at 6:59 am |
    • and as always

      mirosal is wrong

      November 9, 2012 at 7:01 am |
    • Mirosal

      and what makes you so right?

      November 9, 2012 at 7:15 am |
    • and as always

      mirosal wrongness

      November 9, 2012 at 7:18 am |
    • hall 9001

      I'm sorry, "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but your assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module, the expression that best matches the degree to which your assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book can help you:

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

      November 9, 2012 at 8:51 am |
    • snopes confirms

      and as always is false

      November 9, 2012 at 8:52 am |
    • and as always

      morons falling for the troll again. Im not sure who actually belongs on the yellow bus now. the morons or the troll.

      November 9, 2012 at 8:58 am |
    • TrollAlert

      "Ronald Regonzo" who degenerates to:
      "Salvatore" degenerates to:
      "Douglas" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Thinker23" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "another repentant sinner" degenerates to:
      "Dodney Rangerfield" degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "Atheist Hunter" degenerates to:
      "Anybody know how to read? " degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "ImLook'nUp" degenerates to:
      "Kindness" degenerates to:
      "Chad" degenerates to
      "Bob" degenerates to
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "2357" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:
      "fred" degenerates to:
      "!" degenerates to:
      "pervert alert" is the degenerate.

      This troll is not a christian.

      November 9, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.`

      November 9, 2012 at 9:41 am |

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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 and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.