July 14th, 2010
04:57 PM ET

'Virtual preaching' revolutionizes Sunday sermons

People listening to their pastor preach on Sunday morning may now ask a question that no one has ever asked before: Is this live or is this on tape delay?

More pastors are using high-def videos, and even holograms, to beam their Sunday morning sermons to remote "satellite" churches that belong to their congregation, as I detail in a story today.


- CNN Writer

Filed under: Culture & Science

July 14th, 2010
04:14 PM ET

Vatican set to publish new rules on abuse

The Catholic Church on Thursday is expected to release its new rules to try to prevent clergy from abusing children, a source close to the Vatican told CNN.

The rules will be aimed more at firming up existing practices, said the source, who asked not to be named because the source was talking about the regulations before they are made public.

The Vatican will add the possession of child pornography to the list of most serious crimes, declare the abuse of any mentally retarded person to be as bad as the abuse of children, and double the statute of limitations on the Vatican's prosecution of suspected abuse.


- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church

July 14th, 2010
02:11 PM ET

Congress debates biblical stance on immigration

Congress tackled the role of religion and ethics in the politically explosive immigration debate Wednesday as biblical passages and church doctrines were invoked during a heated discussion of various reform proposals.

The argument exposed a sharp philosophical divide on an issue that has taken center stage in the wake of Arizona's passage of a controversial law designed to crack down on illegal immigration.

"We are so far apart philosophically," one Democratic congresswoman said, that it's hard to see how a middle ground can be found.


- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Politics

July 14th, 2010
12:16 PM ET

Audrey Assad hopes to strike a chord with her lyrics

Audrey Assad loves words. Loves, loves, loves them.

“I want to write lyrics that say a lot to people,” the singer-songwriter said recently by phone from her home in Phoenix, Arizona. She says it helps her to read a lot, everything from C.S. Lewis, to children books, to theological discourse, and other non-fiction works.

“I try to stretch myself by reading things that are hard and I think that it influences the way I write - my sentence structure, my vocabulary - so I hope it sets me apart because I really love them and I want to serve the language.”

But Assad's lyrics often describe pain. The pain that comes with being someone who hasn't fit in, someone struggling with her place in the world, someone seeking God's guiding hands, and undenying love. Her debut CD is a compilation of all that comes with that. And even making the album was something that caused her a terrible moment of uncertainty.


- Producer/Writer

Filed under: Catholic Church • Culture & Science • Middle East • Music

July 14th, 2010
12:10 PM ET

The case for and against the Ground Zero mosque

A day after activists for and against a proposed mosque near Ground Zero squared off at a three-hour hearing of New York's Landmarks Preservation Commission, leaders from opposing sides debated the issue on CNN's American Morning.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Islam • Mosque • New York

July 14th, 2010
11:00 AM ET

FBI warns Seattle cartoonist about threats from radical cleric

Pakistani Muslims burn an effigy of cartoonist Molly Norris during a protest in May in Karachi, Pakistan.

A Seattle, Washington, cartoonist who drew a cartoon about the Prophet Mohammed has been warned by the FBI about death threats made against her by a radical cleric with ties to al Qaeda, an FBI agent said Tuesday.

"She should be taken as a prime target of assassination," terror suspect Anwar al-Awlaki purportedly wrote about cartoonist Molly Norris in an English-language magazine called Inspire that claimed to be a publication of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Islam

July 14th, 2010
09:39 AM ET

Atheists reject prayers for Hitchens, believers doubt he's a child of God

Christopher Hitchens (right) with author Mark Danner in 2004.

Hordes of atheists are commenting on yesterday's post from a Catholic priest who says Christians should pray for the cancer-stricken Christopher Hitchens, even if he is an enemy of religion. Far from being touched by the priest's gesture, the atheists are mostly offended:

As an atheist, I find it objectionable that anyone should feel the right to pray for me because I don't believe as they do. That's as bad as that idiot church who thinks its a good idea to baptize dead Jews or protest at military funerals. It's the worst kind of pandering.


- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Atheism • Catholic Church • Christianity • Opinion

July 14th, 2010
08:40 AM ET

Opponents dominate hearing on Ground Zero mosque

Those for and against a proposed mosque near Ground Zero butted heads during a passionate three-hour hearing of New York's Landmarks Preservation Commission Tuesday night.

Officially, the hearing was for testimony on whether a more than century-old building near Ground Zero is worth preserving. Supporters of the landmark status are opposed to a project to build a mosque and community center at the site where the twin towers of the World Trade Center were destroyed by Islamist hijackers on September 11, 2001.

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Israel • Mosque

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.

July 2010