September 9th, 2010
11:04 AM ET

'Burn a Quran' pastor puts all at risk

Editor's note: Anthony Coley is the former communications director and chief spokesman for the late Sen. Edward Kennedy and former New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine. He works as a director at the Brunswick Group, a communications consulting firm.

Rarely do Democrats, Republicans, veterans, military generals and leaders of differing religions and denominations come together to condemn an act that has not even happened.

Yet there are those occasions when the security of our nation and safety of our troops demand it. This is one of those times.

On Saturday, the ninth anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, a pastor in Gainesville, Florida, says he will burn copies of Islam's most sacred and revered book, the Holy Quran. In Islam, the Quran is viewed as the eternal and literal word of God and any mishandling or mistreatment of it is considered extremely offensive.

Read the full story

- cmccloy

Filed under: Christianity • Culture wars • Florida • Islam • Quran • United States

Quran-burning simply a publicity stunt, local Muslims say
September 9th, 2010
10:39 AM ET

Quran-burning simply a publicity stunt, local Muslims say

Editor's note: CNN All-Platform Journalist John Couwels recently sat down with members of the Muslim community in Gainesville, Florida, for their reaction to Pastor Terry Jones' plan to burn 200 Qurans, and his "Islam is the devil" campaign:

The Muslim community in Gainesville, Florida,  has been largely quiet on the hot-button issue of the planned Quran burning on Saturday that has triggered reactions from across the world.  They are not staging a massive rally, hesitant to give Pastor Terry Jones any bigger platform than he already has.

Some see Jones' actions as no more than a publicity stunt to sell his book.  Dr. Adil Kabeer - pictured above on the right - said Jones is no different from the Taliban, a group that has radicalized Islam in order to use the religion to gain power in Afghanistan.


- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Florida • Islam • Muslim • Quran • United States

September 9th, 2010
08:29 AM ET

Muslim group to distribute replacement Qurans in response to planned burning

(CNN) - A major Islamic group will announce an initiative Thursday to distribute 200,000 Qurans to replace what it says are 200 copies that a Florida church plans to burn in a gesture that has sparked controversy worldwide.

The Rev. Terry Jones, pastor of Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, said he will go ahead with plans to burn Qurans on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Jones' plan comes amid increased pressure and warnings that doing so could endanger U.S. troops and Americans worldwide.

On Wednesday, the Vatican joined a chorus of groups imploring the church not to burn Islam's holy book, saying it would be an "outrageous and grave gesture."

Read the full story here

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Islam • Quran

September 9th, 2010
06:00 AM ET

Rosh Hashanah with the Lubavitchers in a Queens cemetery

Sunset Wednesday marked the beginning of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. The holiday brought CNN photojournalist Rick Shine to the Old Montefiore Cemetery in Queens, New York.

All morning, people came to pray at the grave site of the late Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson.

Schneerson's gravesite is considered sacred by some orthodox Jews. Some Jews visit cemeteries to offer of prayers of intercession to tzaddikim, or the righteous, on the day before Rosh Hashanah.


- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Food • Holidays • Judaism • Leaders • New York • United States

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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 with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.