August 3rd, 2010
03:27 PM ET

Landmark status resolved, NYC group moves forward on Islamic center

Now that the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission has denied landmark status for a building near "ground zero" that could house a proposed Islamic center and mosque, the Muslim organization behind the project says it will begin moving forward with efforts to make the building "a model for community service and engagement."

In a statement on a new website devoted to the project now called Park51, the project's planners said, "Until the resolution of the landmarks issue this morning, we were unable to emerge from stage one, as we could not be clear on the impact of a designation on the architecture and design of the building or its program spaces, activities or programming. We are eager to begin working with our partners, supporters, neighbors and communities, to build a community center for everyone."

Read the full story

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Interfaith issues • Islam • Mosque • New York • United States

August 3rd, 2010
02:01 PM ET

Pope shop opens ahead of Benedict's British visit

LONDON, England (CNN) - Pope baseball caps, pope key-rings, pope tote bags, beatification T-shirts and more went on sale Tuesday, as the official online store for Benedict XVI's visit to England and Scotland opened.

Papalvisitstore.com stocks about three dozen items, including customizable T-shirts (20 British pounds, or about $32) and the official souvenir program (10 pounds, or about $16).


- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Catholic Church • Europe • Pope Benedict XVI • United Kingdom

August 3rd, 2010
01:49 PM ET

Remains of John the Baptist found in Bulgaria?

John the Baptist, right, as depicted in this 14th century painting at the National Gallery, London

Archaeologists in Bulgaria claim they have found remains of John the Baptist while excavating the site of a 5th century monastery on the Black Sea island of Sveti Ivan.

A reliquary – a container for holy relics – discovered last week under the monastery’s basilica was opened on Sunday and found to contain bone fragments of a skull, a hand and a tooth, Bulgaria’s official news agency BTA reported.


- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity

August 3rd, 2010
10:14 AM ET

Panel denies landmark status for Islamic center and mosque site near ground zero

From CNN Senior Correspondent Allan Chernoff in New York:

New York City's Landmarks Preservation Commission denied landmark status Tuesday for a building at the site of a proposed Islamic center and mosque near ground zero.

The commissioners voted unanimously against landmark status for 45-47 Park Place. It and an adjoining building are owned by real estate developer Soho Properties, which intends to build an Islamic center two blocks north of the former site of the World Trade Center.


- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Interfaith issues • Islam • Mosque • Muslim • New York • United States

August 3rd, 2010
09:12 AM ET

Your thoughts on today's vote around ground zero mosque

With a key vote on whether a proposed Islamic center and mosque near ground zero can move forward scheduled for this morning, here's a sampling of Belief Blog comments on the project.

Many commenters are venting outrage about the proposed mosque and Islamic center. This reader is representative of the opposition:

What a smack in the face. It was Islamic belief that caused destruction and pain 9/11. What a trophy. They demolished the Twin Towers, and will now put a mosque up. They are laughing at us right now. How stupid is our leaders and our system?

Some readers, though, are outraged over the outrage around the proposed mosque:


- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Houses of worship • Interfaith issues • Islam • Mosque • New York • Opinion • United States

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.