By Dan Gilgoff and Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editors
(CNN) – As he waited with parents who feared that their kids were among the 20 children killed at a Connecticut elementary school on Friday, Rabbi Shaul Praver said the main thing he could do for parents was to merely be present.
“It’s a terrible thing, families waiting to find out if their children made it out alive,” said Praver, who leads a synagogue in Newtown, Connecticut, and was among nine clergy gathered with parents at a firehouse near Sandy Hook Elementary School, where the shooting occurred.
“They’re going to need a lot of help,” Praver said of those who are close to the dead.
From the first moments after Friday’s massacre, which also left six adults and the shooter dead, religious leaders were among the first people to whom worried and grieving families turned for help.
Over the weekend, countless more Americans will look to clergy as they struggle to process a tragedy in which so many of the victims were children.
“Every single person who is watching the news today is asking ‘Where is God when this happens?’” says Max Lucado, a prominent Christian pastor and author based in San Antonio.
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Lucado says that pastors everywhere will be scrapping their scheduled Sunday sermons to address the massacre.
“You have to address it - you have to turn everything you had planned upside down on Friday because that’s where people’s hearts are,” Lucado says.
“The challenge here is to avoid the extremes – those who say there are easy answers and those who say there are no answers.”
Indeed, many religious leaders on Friday stressed that the important thing is for clergy to support those who are suffering, not to rush into theological questions. A University of Connecticut professor on Friday hung up the phone when asked to discuss religious responses to suffering, saying, “This is an immense tragedy, and you want an academic speculating on the problem of evil?”
“There is no good answer at that time that anyone can hear and comprehend and take in,” said Ian T. Douglas, the bishop for the Episcopal diocese of Connecticut, referring to counseling family and friends of the dead. “They’re crying out from a place of deep pain.”
Praver, the rabbi, will join a memorial service Friday night at Newtown’s St. Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church.
“We’re going to have a moment of prayer for the victims,” Praver said of the service. “We cannot let it crush our spirit and we march on.”
Some national religious groups are also sending staff to Newtown, with 10 chaplains dispatched from the North Carolina-based Billy Graham Evangelistic Association on Friday.
Public officials including President Obama, meanwhile, turned to the Bible in responding to the shooting. “In the words of Scripture, 'heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds,' ” Obama said from the White House, citing the book of Psalms.
On Twitter, #PrayForNewton became a trending topic.
CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories
Some religious leaders argue that modern American life insulates much of the nation from the kind of senseless death and suffering that plagues much of the world every day.
“Most of the world, for most of the world’s history, has known tragedy and trauma in abundance,” wrote Rob Brendle, a Colorado pastor, in a commentary for CNN’s Belief Blog after this summer’s deadly shooting in Aurora, Colorado, which left 12 dead.
“You don’t get nearly the same consternation in Burundi or Burma, because suffering is normal to there,” wrote Brendle, who pastored congregants after a deadly shooting at his church five years ago. “For us, though, God has become anesthetist-in-chief. To believe in him is to be excused from bad things.”
My Take: This is where God was in Aurora
Lucado said there was an eerie irony for the Connecticut tragedy coming just before Christmas, noting the Bible says that Jesus Christ’s birth was followed by an order from King Herod to slay boys under 2 in the Roman city of Bethlehem.
“The Christmas story is that Jesus was born into a dark and impoverished world,” Lucado says. “His survival was surrounded by violence. The real Christmas story was pretty rough.”
Many religious leaders framed Friday’s shooting as evidence for evil in the world and for human free will in the face of a sovereign God.
“The Bible tells us the human heart is ‘wicked’ and ‘who can know it?’” the Rev. Franklin Graham said in a statement about the massacre. “My heart aches for the victims, their families and the entire community.”
Many religious leaders also said that such tragedies are a good time for lay people to express doubts about God – or anger.
“This is a time to go deep and pray,” says Lucado. “If you have a problem with God, shake a fist or two at him. If he’s God, he’s going to answer. And if he’s in control, he’ll find a way to let you know.
Where is God? God is standing beside every soul that is struggling today. As for the children and adults that were the victims, they are in Gods arms today.
The kids are supposed to be in their parents arms not with some screwed up imaginary god.
I think you meant to say that God is taking a giant piss on them.
God is within every soul as it churns it way through the polarity conscious world that "it" created...
"As for the children and adults that were the victims, they are in Gods arms today."
And your verified evidence for this is .... ?
Nothing and feel good feelings like always.
- What if some of those children were not baptized?
- What if some of those adults were gay, or Buddhist, or Muslim or non-god-believers?
The sentimentalism of pop theology nauseates me.It gives 2 cent answers to million dollar questions.
Too many Christians, not enough lions, just better go see if the roster already laid the eggs, the day you have the level of intelligence i have then come back to debate!
So your telling me you come looking to God during the bad times and don't even think of God during the good that seems kind of hypocritical. It is a tragedy that so many lost there lives. We as humans always look to someone to blame for our problems the fault of what happened in Connecticut lies in each of us because we could all do some evil like that. Instead of trying to blame God try and do your best so no one will ever try and rob so many people of there future, These coming days people will try to use this tragedy to benefit them such as politicians.
God can fuck himself.
I keep on asking atheist if the believe there is a moon out there regardless of an observer? and they not even cant answer because they know understand i am talking about the double slit experiment where it was discover the dual nature of mater, the roll of the conscious observer and the implication for what the heck this illusion we call universe really is!
Didn't someone ask you to elaborate more on the uncertainty principle Elena? Please enlighten us?
You can't even speak English so we are going to presume that you failed in high school.
Learn grammar, learn spelling, learn theistic debate, then come back and play.
Hi, Elena...I know you have some important ideas that you'd like to debate....but the questions you pose are poorly written and amount to jibberish in English, which is obviously not your first language....
Based on how you've written your comment here, no one could connect that an observation of the moon is somehow related to the double slit experiment of QT....
Please, try and write a coherent question and maybe the atheists might not pass you off as a troll...you're writing resembles many a troll on this blog....
ME1, hat does the uncertainty principle has to do with the double slit experiment and the dual nature of mater? please tell me and then i will enlighten you!
You have shifted your "I keep on asking atheist..." question.
So, I suspect you are just a troll.
Please don't feed the Trolls!
Safety of the North, ok, so asking this, " is there a moon outside there regardless of an observer" is written in poor English, so please re write it for me.
and you know what Spanish is my first language, it come from the Latin which is a very ancient language, the shiety English not event exist when Latin was spoken
the problem here is that most atheist do not know about the quantum science!
so now tell me is that written in bad English, so why would you respond then?
Well, Elena....I was really trying to like you and wanted to find out about your thoughts on pure consciousness as it relates to QM....
But, alas...your obsession with atheists and your need to "enlighten" confirm that you are indeed an Evangelical Troll...
C'est la vie
Elena you obviously have no clue about quantum science either. Maybe you should get a degree in it and stop looking up the information on the internet.
elena, you are an astounding moron. The moon does not need an observer to exist. The stuff in your refridgerator does not zip in and out of existence every time you open or shut the door.
You are an incredible idiot, and I hope you share you beliefs with everyone you encounter, because it recruits atheists wonderfully.
ME II, i am just asking and you dont answer, what does the uncertainty principle has to do with the dual nature of mater? may be it is you who do not understand QM? one has to do with speed and location, the other with waves and particles, can you tell me which is winch? or is that so poorly written you dont understand?
Safety of the North, i am an evangelical troll ha ha ha ha, yeah go ces't la vie, since you don't know anything about QM
Want more stuff?
Actually, elena, I have a great interest in QM...and as I said, I was very interested in hearing what YOU think about consciousness and how it might relate to QM....
In fact, I wish I spoke and wrote Spanish well enough to engage and LISTEN to your thoughts...
But, your unwillingness to listen to the responses that other have made and your obsession with atheists along with your last response to me tells me you truly have no interest in a conversation about QM in English or Spanish....
I wish you were more mature and didn't have something to prove to yourself by insulting others genuine attempts to communicate with you....I'm sure you would be a great person to talk with...
I wish you well.
I doubt there is a point in responding to you, but here goes...
Obviously the slit experiment dealt with and was the origin of the wave-particle duality concept. And almost as obviously, the Uncertainty principle that you are attempting to reference is related to Quantum Mechanics, in that one cannot know the exact momentum and the exact position of a particle at the same time.
Additionally, I would freely admit that I don't fully understand QM. However I suspect that you don't either, as very few people, if any, really understand QM. Especially if you are trying to make a connection between QM and the supernatural, because I don't think that connection can be made, outside of pseudo-science, anyway.
If God does not exist, who is to say anything that happened is really wrong. What absolute basis is there to judge this act as "evil"? There is no explanation in science to dictate the presence of morality, let alone define it. In fact, science can only state that change, regardless of chemical-driven emotion, must happen for a species to advance. That change can be neither morally good or bad.
We do have morality that cannot be satisfied with any scientific explanation, but that seems absolute and above us. Our hearts break at this tragedy. Our voices raise at what we could have done to prevent this horror. We have labeled it as evil, as it should be.
Time for us to repent of pushing a tolerant God out of our lives. We have deceived ourselves with His supposed non-existence.
I truly believe God saves His elect...that Jesus stood in those classrooms when those children perished, and He did not loose any of them, but ushered each one in his loving arms to his/her true home with the Triune God.
Ah yes, the "you can't have morals without my pretend friend in the sky" argument.
Sorry, that is an intellectually empty position to take. You easily can construct a framework for moral behavior with reasoning skills alone. It doesn't require invisible beings.
So rather that use a soft painless death he used a killer with some bullets to do it. Painful...physically and emotionally.
Sad that you need a god to tell you what is right and wrong.
Oh dear, not again.
Morality comes from the social nature of humans. Things that hurt others is wrong. It gets codified into law. Other standards get in there too, based on mutual agreement of what is good and bad, though often these are imposed by someone in power.
Law evolve from the early weird ones of the ancients into the modern versions, which are far better than the horrors of the Old Testament.
No god required. Lots of good reasons to be good with no god, like the long term prosperity of cooperation and the love and respect received from being decent.
No god required for any of it, and I worry that Christians feel that, were there no god, they would go on psychotic rampages. Christians must be powderkegs with the fuse lit.
God wipes out thousands in flood or commands the Israelites to carry out acts of genocide and that's OK But if Hitler does it it isn't.
Aezel. Your explanation for the existence of intellect and reason first before you provide the rationale for non-absolute morality.
GAW. Horrific tragedy happens every hour around the world. Dying of sepsis and multiorgan failure in an ICU over weeks is arguably more painful than a bullet to the head.But that doesn't lessen the horror of Newton.
Eric Harris t-shirt day of Columbine massacre read "Natural Selection", we brought this on ourselves, if you teach we are animals don't be surprised when people act like them, there is no moral compass
Bollocks – people have massacred millions in the name of their gods.
In Sweden where atheism and secularism abound there were only 232 homicides reported in 2009. hmmmm
Like Josef Stalin?
Hey stupid! The shooter was from a church-going Catholic family. God had plenty of chances with him.
Or are you saying that those children deserved to die because they weren't taught your delusion?
Maybe so, but don't expect public schools to be responsible for what parents are failing to do. It is the fundamentally religious who want to bring children into the world at record pace with no restraints, and then wish they could dump the responsibility for their moral upbringing onto the public educators.
getaclue, we are animals. Get a clue.
@George – And Charlemagne, Xerxes, The Pope, Name-your-ruler-who-thinks-he-is-the-arm-of-god, zzzz
This is what happens when we live in a country so determined to drive God out of. Everyone is so determined to drive the church and God out of everyday life, then make the excuse we don't want to offend anyone by it. Then when we have a Godless country, horrible things start happening. Once these horrible things happen, we ask where is God? HELLO!!! You all were so determined to drive Him out of our lives where do you think he is??? NOT with us! I am pretty sure He got the hint America doesn't "need" him when we started our Massive baby slaughter "abortion", and many many many other things I will not get into on here. It's sad how people turn to God in horrible times like these, while try to kick Him out of our country when things aren't going bad. Prayers to the families and children.
The kool aid levels are strong in this one.
Look are Sweden a secular country with little to no religious influence and crimes are near existent.
Zzzz...why do you need a god to tell you to do what you know to be right? Does it give you solace to have a god who "abandons" you? Your arguments are tired and old.
Drive out God? Does he need a car? Cant he drive himself? Isn't he God?
If you research Sweden, you will find that your statement is not entirely accurate. There is a very strong christian presence in Sweden. 6.5 Million to be precise. If you compare that to the low population, that is quite the large percent of Christians!!!
@ Reaonably, How do we know what is right or wrong? Where do we get our Morals? It would seem things that are "right" to some are "wrong" to others, so where does this sense of what is right or wrong come from and how can we compare it? My belief is I know what is right and wrong from God. Much of the evil in the world is from those without God who are tricked and tempted into believing what they are doing is, in fact, "right". Without a perfect God, we wouldn't have Morals. That feeling when something is wrong and sickens your stomach, I believe we learn that from God. I believe without his "right", we are all leading to the "wrong"
I said little to no religious "influence", not if there are Christians.
Remember kids – when seconds count, the cops are just minutes away!
I know iIwill catch a lot of flackand I really don't care, but here's my thought. He left when they took Him out of the school.
Just so you know, your belief here is that it will be ok for muslims to pray to mecca, pagans to pray to Gaea and satanists to pray to satan. The door swings both ways.
@ elena: "we are is a lump of energy embedded in an electromagnetic field and that all that exist is consciousness"
Get help dearie! That's the dumbest version of sloppy solipcism that I have ever heard, and you have to be mentally disbalanced to believe it.
Please stay away from guns and kindergartens. Get the to a mental ward.
He's been corraled by the right wing republican extremist and only wants to do the bad things they call for. Like cutting funds for old people's social security, funds for feeding children and paying to help with fuel costs. I mean they are so christian he took to hiding...
I so agree! More lions! And Christians are the perfect food.
ME II, My whole point is that atheist had highjacked science to claim that it proves a creator do not exist , and that the rest of us are just a whole bunch of idiots just because we believe something else must exist beyond this reality. Atheist are worst than those priests who claim to have the absolute truth and that the rest of us must to follow them when they not even cant answer simple questions!
how ever the christian god as they call it is in fact not a god created by Christians? but to explain this will take too long!
You can't explain anything and you honestly don't listen to anyone except your own idiocy.
I am trying to listen to you and you cant answer simple questions! so how dare you to say that i don't listen!
Elena you don't listen to anyone that answers your questions. Every time someone does answer the question you run away and never respond.
Elena, the God that Christians worship is a God created by them. Others (the Greeks, Hindus, Muslims etc) have their own share of mythological beings!
No body hijacked science. The fact is that Christians are the ones that feel the most threatened by science. You don't actually see Hindus or Buddhists bickering about how science has caused God to move out of their life. This is coz their religious philosophies are actually in more accordance with science, while the Bible goes off the cliff when science proves that the earth is round, that there never was a flood (of Noah), that the universe is billions of years old, that we have evolved and were not suddenly created!!!
But you ARE an idiot. Science shows no supernatural force anywhere in the universe, from the tiniest subatomic particle to the whole expanse of space. Science isn't a conspiracy: it finds what it finds, and everything it finds has been natural. No god there anywhere.
The only proof that youcan offer is a bible, but Jesus was wrong about the end times happening in the life of some of those standing there, and he was wrong about how prayer works absolutely, exactly what you ask for, including a mountain throwing itself into the sea.
Science finds nothing, your god is wrong, twice. Christianity is a fraud.
The bottom liine is, that God, or whatever anyone refers to as God, is pure polarity consciousness, simply residing as an all pervasive consciousness. All reality is God playing with itself and choosing different modalities in doing so, like are 3-D reality. In is just one of the many infinite reality that the over all being of God resides. To say I am God is to tell the universe that you recognize that you are, and know you exst as an aspect of ALL THAT IS...
Very few, if any, atheists claim that science "proves" that god does not exist. If they do then they are wrong. That is a strawman argument.
ME ll, are you some sort of militant agnostic? Throughout all of science, there is not a single bit of proof that any god even exists at all. There is no magic anything. Your ignorance is the very definition of a cognitive bias. You cannot argue from ignorance and remain credible. Please get a fucking clue.
@Bill Utrup "All reality is God playing with itself"
Reality is just cosmic masturbation?
The "clue" here, Compton, is that science does not deal in "proof", that's logic and mathematics. In addition, all the 'lack of evidence' in the world does not "prove" anything. While I agree that there is no evidence at all for the supernatural, I also agree with Dawkins' "6.9 out of 7" certainty that god does not exist. That, however, is still not certain and certainly is not "proof".
Also, I think, most atheists and agnostics make a point of specifying "positive atheism" or "strong atheism" when talking about claims that "god does not exist". Most, I think, are of the 'I simply lack a belief in god(s)' variety.
ME ll, admitting your ignorance is good....but your ignorance is not a basis from which to argue that others share your level of ignorance. You still don't have a clue about the logical and scientifically verifiable proof of the non-existence of any god whatsoever. Dawkins is a biologist. He does not make good arguments outside of his specialty. Ignorance is not a clue, fool.
God is good. It doesn't mean that pain and evil don't exist in this world. "And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you." 1 Peter 5:10. I know it's hard to comprehend that God is good and loving in times this hard... but he isn't sitting in Heaven laughing in joy at our pain. He tells us that what pains us, pains him. However, he uses all things for our good.
God is there. God is loving. And in times when I have endured great pain in life, it was only possible for me to endure because I entrusted in him.
My heart and prayers go out to the families, friends and loved ones of these children. RIP little ones.
"You still don't have a clue about the logical and scientifically verifiable proof of the non-existence of any god whatsoever."
Wow! you have "scientifically verifiable proof" that god does not exist?
Please, enlighten me. I would love to see it. And, please, cite your sources too if possible, as I'm sure I'll need to read more to fully understand it.
....last comment reposted on page 66
"And in times when I have endured great pain in life, it was only possible for me to endure because I entrusted in him."
Yeah, I know... I feel the same way about Harvey, my 6'2" invisible rabbit friend.
God isnt real plain and simple. He if was then he could have and should have stopped this and every other horrible event that takes place in the world. If god was real why does millions of children die every year from lack of food. The only place god exsist is between Ur head. I will admit having somebody else to talk to in times of need feel good but does not make it true or real.
here is another ignorant atheist, watch him falling to a just simple question!
and what is real according to you then?
The same real proof i would need to believe that Ur god is real would be the same proof U would need to believe Allah is real or any other god. What proof do U have that Allah is real because 1.3 billion ppl believe that he is...
"Every form has its maker"
The issue is not "where was G-d. The issue is where was man.
God had nothing to do with this. God gave us free will that's why there are bad people who chose to do evil things to good people. That's just the nature of living in a physical world...
There is no god anywhere, Mr. Kip. Time to burst that ole' bubble in your head.
As to free will, we only have the illusion of free will. Physics proves that this universe is deterministic.
To have free will and then to be punished for it is ridiculous in the extreme. Religion is fraud.
This imaginary god of which you speak as murdered far more innocent children than this sick man who killed these school children.
The EVIL god Jehovah murdered thousands- if not millions- of innocent children during the Flood. He also ruthlessly murdered the first born babies in Egypt. The book of myths and lies, called the bible, is full of many other examples.
Since Christians seem to love to worship baby killers maybe they will add this school shooter to the list of Saints and worship him too!
Fortunately god is imaginary and the bible a fairy tale.
From the Canaanite point of view this guy is no different than Joshua. What kind of twisted mindset comes to regard a baby killer as some kind of great "hero"?
"Every form has its maker " Maimonides
So now after 20 children and 6 adults were killed most of the Christians here can do nothing more than push their agenda and claim that God allowed or caused this because America has turned its back on the principles of Right Wing Evangelicalism. I call that evil.
Sadly my own father spouted that same $#it as well.
A coward can only refer to their talking points and agenda...it requires courage and a thoughtful mind to consider that blaming "God being taken out of schools" undermines their entire theology...
But, what can you do with those who refuse to think for themselves...
Especially when it could just as easily be claimed to be a response by God against heartless Conservatives. Problem is, the moderate Christians who could make this claim are just too nice to say anything that critical against fellow Christians.
If there is a god it is most likely the Deist version and not the Christian version.
There isn't any god whatsoever, so don't worry about it and tumble onwards towards the horizon, yo.
It's impossible to admire a deity who runs the worst torture camp ever, one that hurts people for the rest of eternity. That makes god worse and more evil than anyone he is torturing.
Only sick cruel people torture, and they are hated on Earth. Why is it okay for your deity to do it.
Cruel and unusual punishment is sick and illegal. Why is it okay for your god to do it?
If you consider the nature of your god, you will realize he is actually evil, and unworthy of worship. By embracing him, you embrace evil. You become a minion of evil. Good thing he doesn't exist.
It's easy when you think that your kowtowing and toadying protects you from the tyrant.
Why is G-d the cause of this terrible act? It was man that did it. Man was given a mind of his own and as a result of that fact, G-d can only weep as the ship heads towards the rocks.
You didn't read what I wrote.
Justice cannot be robbed by Mercy. I believe that God was and is there...always. I believe that he weeps for the lost soul who has committed the offense, and I also believe he stands with the rest of the Heavenly host to welcome the innocent. Justice will be served, it is a necessary occurrence. My prayers go out to those who have been effected by this event. May Peace be with you.
"Innocent" is not a standard for entry into heaven. If the innocent are of any other religion, or of no religion, then God is the next psycho who will hurt them in his torture chamber.
I honestly believe that Sarah Palin is the only one that can heal and re-unify our country. But first she must return to her motorhome and resume her cross country tour. She will have to visit cities both large and small, speaking only to "real Americans", dispensing her sage advice and folksy, homespun common sense solutions. We can recover from this tragedy and become a great nation once again but we must all follow the "Palin Path"
You should write for The Onion.
Free will.... ok God decides that he wants to create something – creates angels...they serve him ... now he need something for them to do.... the earth then sun ect. create man. God decides to play a game with himself...where hes the good guy... but he needs a bad guy... orders Lucifer to rebel against him.... Lucifer has no choice – does as he's told (because what choice does he have...he's facing an omnipotent being either way- right?- only a complete moron would disobey his omnipotent creator).
so the game begins... and man must choose between the two good or evil... but God being the gamer that he is decides to add a handicap ... makes it so man, to progress anywhere in this game must disobey one of God's specific instructions....and on and on it goes .....
but one last thing...why play this out at all? God is omniscient....already knows how its going to play out....nothing happens that god doesnt intend to happen. all the misery and evil..his doing...by design.
isnt dark age dogma fun?
One thing that I've felt is constantly and consistently over looked in these types of situations is the overall picture. While some remarks make attempts to go deeper, the need for mental health improvements, better parenting, improved security etc. it still appears that we as a greater community aren't aware of the broader more far reaching realities…that we are bound to these atrocities. Most all of the comments ring true in some regard. We DO need to bolster kids social skills. We DO need to think about the families and not the shooter. We DO need to cut down on violence in the media. But those are things WE need to do. And its a subtle difference, to do something and not ask for it to be done. Without trying to sound grandiose or profound we need to realize that we are not living the way we should; we are not even living the way we want to! We tend to work not for productive gain or fulfillment; we work for money. We tend to buy things not for need or greater cause; we buy them because we are generally selfish. We tend not to live lives for understanding and love; we live for some marketed idea of "happiness". And though we may not directly choose these things we do choose them however inadvertently. By concerning ourselves with…mainly ourselves, we give up so much. Don't spend 3 dollars on that trashy magazine at the counter in the grocery store…go outside and give it to the dishevelled guy or girl in the parking lot. Don't watch that new action-packed violent movie this weekend…go out for ice-cream and conversation. Don't drop a bunch of cash on some all-inclusive vacation…donate a few bucks to a local charity and help out one day at a soup kitchen.
If we truly are done with these atrocities and acts of violence, then we need to be truly done with the way we go about our lives. Its not a utopian idea. Its not unrealistic. Its a matter of are we willing. Are we?
I prefer to let my government give equal help to every citizen. I don't mind paying taxes. There are things we need done that we can do through our government a billion times better than any private concern.
So I won't volunteer at a soup kitchen because the 1percenters have over 46 TRILLION DOLLARS and refuse to pay taxes or help anyone or do anything helpful or realistic with few exceptions.
Get the money from them. I'm already paying taxes. They want slave labor and oppression instead of doing what's right.
But I get you with all of us needing to change things for the better and doing more nice social things. I'd like to see more of that.
humans are a vicious, predatory species, so, sorry, not gonna happen.
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.