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February 15th, 2013
04:34 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, February 15, 2013

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:


Parish priests of Rome's diocese attend a meeting with Pope Benedict XVI at the Paul VI Hall on February 14, 2013 in Vatican City, Vatican.

CNN: Pope Benedict addresses priests of Rome
Pope Benedict XVI addressed parish priests from the city of Rome on Thursday, in what is likely to be one of his final public appearances before his resignation from the papacy at the end of the month. The meeting with the parish priests focused on Benedict's experiences from the Second Vatican Council, in the 1960s, which examined the Roman Catholic Church's relationship with the world.

Tweet of the Day:

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 14th, 2013
06:08 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Thursday, February 14, 2013

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: Pope Benedict makes first appearance since resignation news
Huge crowds in the Vatican cheered Pope Benedict XVI Wednesday as he made his first public appearance since announcing his resignation at the end of the month. He thanked the Roman Catholic faithful in several languages and said it was not appropriate for him to continue as pope. He appeared tired but not visibly unwell as he sat and read his remarks off several sheets of paper. Benedict also celebrated an Ash Wednesday mass marking the beginning of Lent at St. Peter's Basilica in the afternoon.

CNN: Tibetan sets himself on fire in front of shrine in Nepal
A Tibetan man set himself on fire in front of a famous Buddhist shrine in the Nepalese capital on Wednesday, police said, becoming the latest Tibetan to adopt this harrowing form of protest over Chinese rule. Self-immolation began as a form of protest among Tibetans in China in February 2009, when a young monk set himself ablaze. In March 2011, another young monk followed in his footsteps, becoming the first to die. Scores of others have since followed suit.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 11th, 2013
05:26 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Monday, February 11, 2013

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: 36 killed in stampede at Indian rail station near huge Hindu festival
A railroad station crush left 36 people dead Sunday among tens of millions of Hindu pilgrims flocking to the banks of the Ganges River for the world's largest religious gathering, authorities reported. The stampede occurred about 7 p.m. after someone fell from a platform bridge in Allahabad, the scene of this year's Kumbh Mela festival, North-Central Railway spokesman Sandeep Mathur said.

CNN: Americans reveal their 3 favorite sins
“Lead me not into temptation. I can find it all by myself.” That line, taken from the country music song “Lead Me Not,” evokes smiles because it underscores a truth: The struggle against temptation is universal. A new survey, however, gets specific about the type of temptations most Americans battle against, and shows that men and women seem to wrestle with different vices.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 8th, 2013
05:36 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, February 08, 2013

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 Bishops not satisfied with Obama’s contraception compromise
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops does not support the Obama administration’s revised proposal for providing insurance coverage for contraception, saying it falls short of addressing concerns about religious freedom.


President Barack Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast Thursday, February 07, 2013.

CNN: Picking up a bagel instead of a partisan fight
Translation headsets squawked in four languages at the early morning breakfast in Washington, mixing in with the sounds of stirred coffee and clinking china in the immense ballroom at the Washington Hilton. For the 61st time, the president came to pray with the U.S. Senate and House prayer groups at the National Prayer Breakfast. It is an event that is equal parts prayer and politics, where members of both parties laud one another about a temporary political truce, lay down their partisan ammunition, and pause to pray together.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 7th, 2013
05:21 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Thursday, February 07, 2013

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: Boy Scout leaders to vote on ending ban against gay membership
The polarizing debate over whether Boy Scouts of America should allow gay members could culminate with a vote on a new policy Wednesday. But no matter which way the vote goes, activists on both sides aren't going to be satisfied. The controversy pits leaders of religious groups that sponsor about 1 million Boy Scouts against activists who want the organization to end its ban on openly gay Scouts and Scout leaders. Neither side is happy with BSA's proposal to let local troops decide if they want to allow gay members.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 6th, 2013
05:10 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Wednesday, February 06, 2013

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: Arkansas to allow concealed guns in churches
The Arkansas House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed a measure that would allow concealed guns to be carried in churches and houses of worship, and the governor’s office says it plans to sign the bill. The measure, which passed 85-8 on Monday, gives houses of worship the option of allowing concealed weapons.

CNN: Nigeria's Igbo Jews: 'Lost tribe' of Israel?
A Shabbat service is underway at the Ghihon Hebrew Research synagogue in the Jikwoyi suburb of Nigeria's federal capital territory. Fourteen year-old Kadmiel Izungu Abor heads there with his family. In a country of 162 million people tensions often lead to violent uprisings between Christians and Muslims and being part of the religious minority can be an issue. But Abor wears his kippah and his identity with pride. "I am a Jewish Igbo," he says.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 5th, 2013
05:45 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Tuesday, February 05, 2013

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: Lawyers seek to limit New York police surveillance of Muslims
Civil rights lawyers filed papers in federal court Monday seeking to prohibit the New York Police Department's surveillance of Muslim communities when there is no evidence that they are linked to terrorism or other illegal activities. The department's demographics unit – or zone assessment unit – was put together with the CIA's help after the September 11, 2001, attacks. The unit has acknowledged that it engaged in monitoring that included Muslim-owned business and mosques across the New York region.

CNN: Saudi Islamist preacher on trial in daughter's slaying
Outrage is mounting in Saudi Arabia about the case of a 5-year-old girl who died after allegedly being beaten and tortured by her father, who activists say is an Islamist preacher. Activists say the girl's father, Fayhan Al-Ghamdi is an Islamist evangelist popular in Saudi Arabia for his televised appearances and for speaking on air about the rewards of repenting to God. But they also say he only fancies himself as a cleric and is not recognized by the clerical establishment.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 4th, 2013
04:30 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Monday, February 04, 2013

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: A killing, a life sentence and my change of heart
Jeanne Bishop is the sister of Nancy Bishop Langert, who, along with her husband and their unborn child, was shot to death by a juvenile. Since the murder of her family members, Jeanne Bishop has been an advocate for gun violence prevention. Through God she learned to forgive her sister's killer, and is now for abolition of the death penalty. Bishop is a criminal defense attorney in Chicago.

CNN: Amid 'storybook' ending, Ray Lewis is still controversial
It's not hard to find Ray Lewis in prayer. You might catch a glimpse of it on the sidelines before a game. In the locker room. Even on the cover of Sports Illustrated – the muscular Baltimore Ravens linebacker standing bare-chested in a swimming pool, his palms pressed together. To some, Lewis' frequent expressions of faith are the marks of a life redeemed, a long 13-year journey from murder accusations – later dropped by prosecutors – in the death of two men hours after the 2000 Super Bowl in Atlanta. But for others, the show of faith is little more than an act.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

February 1st, 2013
05:31 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, February 01, 2013

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: Opt out option expected for religious insurers who oppose contraceptives
Religiously affiliated organizations will be able to opt out of providing their employees with insurance coverage for contraceptives under updates to an Obama administration mandate that the Department of Health and Human Services is expected to unveil on Friday, according to two sources.


Archbishop Jose H. Gomez chastised his predecessor, now retired Cardinal Roger Mahony (above), for shortcomings after victims came forward during his tenure.

CNN: Files may reveal what the Catholic Church in Los Angeles knew about sex abuse
A California judge has forced the Archdiocese of Los Angeles to release some 12,000 pages of church documents revealing how it handled allegations of priest sexual abuse. There were many – 192 priests and bishops were named in litigation, the archdiocese said. "The cases span decades," Archbishop Jose H. Gomez said in a statement Thursday. Some go back to the 1930s.

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

January 31st, 2013
04:40 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Thursday, January 31, 2013

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: Author of Scientology book: ‘There have been a lot of tears in this story’
To Scientologists and their supporters, L. Ron Hubbard is a voice of wisdom and the church is the way to enlightenment. To antagonists and skeptics, Hubbard is a con artist and fraud, and the church is a mishmash of Freudian psychology and science fiction, a celebrity-laden scam. Lawrence Wright doesn’t buy either generalization. In his new book, “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “The Looming Tower” delves into the life of Hubbard, the writer-turned-prophet, and the church he created – one which, he says, arose out of an atmosphere of spiritual ferment in post-World War II Los Angeles.

Belief on TV:

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- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Morning Read

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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.

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