November 9th, 2011
08:27 AM ET

CNN Belief Blog's a.m. speed read for Wednesday

Here's the Belief Blog’s morning rundown of the top faith-angle stories from around the United States and around world. Click the headlines for the full stories.

Compiled by Dan Merica, CNN

From CNN:

CNN: Mississippi voters reject anti-abortion initiative

Mississippi voters rejected an amendment to the state constitution that would have defined life as starting at conception and outlawed abortion and many forms of birth control if passed. The ballot initiative was part of a national campaign brought by Personhood USA, a group that describes itself as a nonprofit Christian ministry.

CNN: Holy cities face threat from polluting pilgrims

An estimated 2.5 million pilgrims have descended on the city of Mecca for the Islamic Hajj, but with the rising threat of climate change, there are now calls for both pilgrims and authorities in Mecca to reduce the environmental damage wrought by this yearly influx of travelers.

CNN: Poll: Faith important in 2012, but Mormon skepticism remains

A poll released Tuesday painted a picture of a religious electorate that has a strong preference toward religious candidates, but maintains skepticism of a Mormon in the White House.

@CNNBelief's follow of the day:  @lukecoppen, London-based editor of The Catholic Herald, a great source for insightful information on the Roman Catholic Church news from around the world.

Enlightening Reads:

The Guardian: Catholic Church can be held responsible for wrongdoing by priests

Victims of clerical sexual abuse will find it easier to bring compensation claims against the Catholic Church after a judge ruled it can be held responsible for the wrongdoings of its priests.

BBC: India stampede 'kills 16' at Haridwar festival

A stampede at a religious festival in northern India killed at least 16 people Monday, officials said. The stampede took place at an ashram, or religious community, in Haridwar, 100 miles north of New Delhi.

Quote of the Day:

"It’s well known that Whole Foods values and celebrates diversity. We have a zero-tolerance discrimination policy, zero tolerance."

- Kate Lowery, Whole Foods Market spokeswoman Kate Lowery, in regards to a former employee who says he was fired because he is Muslim (Full story)

Today’s Opinion:

CNN: My Take: Why good Catholics are challenging church line on homosexuality
Patrick Hornbeck of Fordham University looks into why more Catholics are defying the Vatican on homosexuality, while the Roman Catholic Church has called being gay or lesbian “an objective disorder.”

Join the conversation…

Rick Perry's mission from God: How the candidate's lifelong faith journey culminated in a presidential run. A must read from Belief Blog co-editor Dan Gilgof with almost 3,000 comments.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (60 Responses)
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  8. Alien Orifice

    On 11/9/2011, HeavenSent said the following to me:


    He skated around the question because he knows I've got him figured out. Anywho, he probably deserved what happened to him.


    She was referring to the fact that I was se xually molested by a pedophile when I was 12 years old.

    I bring this to your attention because at one time, I thought HeavenSent was just a harmless old hag mad at the world. Now I realize she is far stranger. Perhaps dangerous.

    No sane or decent person would make that kind of statement. I encourage you not to engage HeavenSent in conversation. In my opinion, she has clearly crossed the line. She is IN FACT a nut case.

    My opinion only, but that is exactly what she said and that is really creepy. You be the judge.

    November 9, 2011 at 10:47 pm |
  9. kimsland

    Oh a CNN belief article about CNN belief articles. At last a good place to voice my honest opinion about these articles in general.

    The 'Belief' article is ridiculous
    1. Non religious people out number the crazies
    2. Actual religious comments are crazy anyway
    3. The articles themselves are crazy (I expect to see 'The sky is falling' article come out any day now!)

    I say shut it down, most will cheer. Win win.

    November 9, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
    • IsItaCult.com

      I think Mormonism is a cult, what about you? http://www.isitacult.com

      November 12, 2011 at 11:16 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Every religion is a cult.

      November 12, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
    • Athy

      If the guy at the top is alive, it's a cult. If the guy at the top is dead, it's a religion.

      July 4, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
  10. Bo

    @ Bob,2:33 post,Sarcasium doesn't justify a reply, but your rediculas sarcasism doesn't even make good sence.

    November 9, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  11. Mr. Widemouth

    It will be interesting to see how the Catholic church and the Queen of England deal with charges of Genocide in Canada – http://www.squidoo.com/genocide-in-canada

    November 9, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
  12. Alien Orifice

    Oh great, I was a partial birth abortion with a complimentary lobotomy which I survived all for naught.

    November 9, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Ouch! That sounds like it would sting a little bit

      November 9, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  13. Bo

    I don’t get out to many other Christian churches to see and hear what is happening, but have been reading lately and some of the things that are happening in the Liberal Christian community, and I even think it is appalling. The beliefs and morality seems anything but Biblical, like it doesn’t matter what the Bible says, it is more like “I’ll worship God the way I please. Don’t tell me what the Bible says.” Most of it has to do with s.e.xual immorality. I don’t think the Christian churches remember the lessons of Sodom and Gomorra. Nor do I think that the lessons of the Children of Israel and their idolatrous inclinations seem to have made and impact. Anything that makes God second is an idol, job, possessions, sports etc.

    November 9, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
    • Brad

      Then are you saying that the current state of humankind is a direct result of refined idolatry?

      November 9, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
    • Bob

      Yeah, Bo, those modern Christians, they just aren't up to those strict daily goat sacrifices that you do, the wimps. You must be your god's favorite with all those animals you burn at the altar, just like he commanded you to.

      November 9, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
    • Brad

      While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and “sinners” came and ate with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?” On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:10-13

      November 9, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  14. Bo

    What didn't work iin the French Revolution was that all the churches closed, religious meeting were forbbiden and Bibles and religious material were burned. After that the crime and immortality grew to such porpotions that after a little more than three years the National Committee had to repeal the church and religious meeting bans and again allowed churches to reopen.

    November 9, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • Brad

      An atheist might reply that any moral system might have served – they just went with the one that had been in place before. This isn't a comment on the accuracy of your analysis of French history.

      November 9, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • Chuckles

      That an interesting tid-bit that I didn't know about, I never really studied the french revolution as in depth as I would have wanted.

      If you're asking for an atheists opinion on the matter, at least in my humble opinion in why it didn't work is because the country was 95% catholic and with a revolution that was supposed to reflect the will of the people having just occured, it doesn't really make sense to insti.tute a policy that would anger just about everyone, though I guess since the catholic church was the largest land owner in france at the time, it made sense to at least wage a litle war on religion in order to switch peoples loyalty from religion to nationalism.

      Most athiests will agree (I hope) that you can't force atheism on people, That will only create moore fervent believers and even drive people who are secular to become believers out of spite or any other reason. State enforced atheism can not truely exist, its only through education, understanding and reason does atheism prevail and the way to do that is to unfetter programs with religious dogma. You can't force people to stop believing in something unless you are willing to go through great lengths and kill a lot of innocent people, it's only giving the person the choice (a true choice) with both sides represented that I personally believe atheism will ultimately prevail.

      November 9, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
    • Bo

      @ CHUCKLES The reason that the ban of religious matters was lifted was the rise in crime and immorality. That had nothing to do with the Christian community, and it came about the time of the arrest of the Pope, the date of which I can not remember right now. I think that the country is still very immoral, perhaps the most immoral country in Europe, but that is just my opinion .

      November 9, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
    • Chuckles


      Congrats on being able to reply directly by the way!

      I'm confused by your point, you're saying there's a rise in crime and immorality (by who's standards?) after the abolition of the church and yet there still is crime and immorality to this date even after the church was reinsti.tuted so doesn't it stand to reason that you're comparison is actually incorrect as it doesn't seemingly look like one had an effect on the other.

      Keep in mind, crime doesn't just rise and fall a day or two after a policy is insti.tuted. Look at the overall picture. 1789 you have a country that just revolted against the monarchy and the power is now left to the people, the law makers and enforces are killed or run out of town, they're in effect in a state of controlled anarchy. Crime rises. You try to abolish christianity as the state religion, which doesn't make any of these people any less christian mind you, and crime still rises. Do you see a french policy of abolishing christianity making someone less christian or moral or willing to follow christian morals and values? If the US today said christianity is defunct and outlawed, would you turn to crime?

      November 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Wow, just reread your post and realized I apparently had terrible reading comprehension. Apologies.

      I guess I'm more confused though, what is your point?

      November 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • Bo

      @CHUCKLES, The only reason I can reply directly is because I’m on a library computer and not on my cell phone. I needed to do some other work first, then I went on line to do this. And my time is just about up, so I need to go.

      November 9, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
    • Nonimus

      My understanding was that religion was not banned outright, but heavily restricted. This was due to the Catholic church previously being the largest landowner in France and it's role in government; it was the First Estate and handled much of the tax collection and birth, death, and marriage records. So it does make some sense that an overthrow of the establishment might include attacks on the Church too.

      In fact, if I remember correctly, it was Robespierre and his Deist religion that were banned by the Thermidorian revolution, which also, along with the Concordate of 1801 secured freedom of religion and separation of church and state untill the 1900's.

      November 9, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
  15. Bo

    Aparently, for some reason, my last post was deleted. I would like some atheist's take on why the atheistic French Revolution of 1793 - did not work.

    November 9, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • Chuckles

      Well it mostly didn't work because its non existant. Or at least, in the way you define "Atheistic revolution"

      Can you please explain and clairfy? As far as I know, the French revolution, that occured 1789 DID work, so........

      November 9, 2011 at 11:32 am |
    • hippypoet

      i would say it did work... they went from king and queen to Napoleon, then to a system of government like ours. Infact they based the doctrine on ours from 100 years before.

      November 9, 2011 at 11:36 am |
    • Bucky Ball

      Actually HP, it was the other way around. The French Enlightenment was one of THE major influences on the philosophy of our Founding Fathers. They WERE slower in some ways to actually make the political changes, but the intellectual foundations were in French philosophy before we adopted it. 😈

      November 9, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
  16. tallulah13

    The people of Mississippi should be proud of themselves. It's wonderful when common sense wins out over hysterical emotion.

    November 9, 2011 at 10:40 am |
    • Chuckles

      Second! I was thrilled to see that even in one of the more red, conservative and christian states a majority of voters recognized what is right and what is wrong. What saddens me is this won't stop abortion opponents or even deter them.

      November 9, 2011 at 10:45 am |
  17. Dr. Zeuss

    Fast religion news summary: god doesn't exist. Stop wasting time on your religion.

    November 9, 2011 at 10:24 am |
    • Brad

      Postings are a bit thin today – let's hear some atheist apologetics (from Greek ἀπολογία, "speaking in defense"). RIchard Dawkins isn't here today, but let's have someone step up to the plate.

      November 9, 2011 at 10:54 am |
    • Chuckles


      What is your question exactly? Do you want to debate with someone, preferably an atheist?

      November 9, 2011 at 11:16 am |
    • Brad

      @Chuckles – as you said earlier "maybe we should just do CNN's job for them and write it ourselves". So far there's just not much here.

      November 9, 2011 at 11:29 am |
    • Chuckles


      I'm still trying to figure out what you want. Debate? I'm game, what would you like to debate?
      Bashing CNN? Sure, why not, BOOO CNN!!

      Get a little more specific please.

      November 9, 2011 at 11:44 am |
  18. The Bobinator

    Perhaps they should write an atheist article, explaining why atheists think the way they do. That would be a hotbed of activity. 🙂

    November 9, 2011 at 10:05 am |
    • Chuckles

      It obviously needs to be written by a christian though, preferably an evangelical, because they know better than any atheist how we actually think.

      November 9, 2011 at 10:07 am |
    • hippypoet

      LOL, dude that would be a hell fest for religious folks!

      @chuckles – duh, of course they know us better then we do....they talk to god about it! He spilt all our sercets! we're all doomed!

      November 9, 2011 at 10:11 am |
    • Chuckles

      On second thought, maybe we should just do CNN's job for them and write it ourselves and submit it to CNN, it could be ti.tled, "Why Christians are wrong and are the cancer of the world"

      CNN will publish it because it'll get attention AND since they're being controlled by the liberal, ga.y, jew, black, hispanic, asian muslim, anti-christian agenda, that'll be right down their alley right?

      Maybe after that, we can recruit some fellow atheists to become the monitors on this board who always block christians from posting, then things will really get heated!

      November 9, 2011 at 10:26 am |
  19. Awkward Situations

    Department of Redundancy Department

    November 9, 2011 at 8:55 am |
  20. hippypoet

    they are fast running out of sh!t to write news articles about! sad... maybe they should try doing a happy article, one that doesn't focus on misery and shame, death or poor living – happiness is a good thing to write about! balance is needed here i think.

    November 9, 2011 at 8:36 am |
    • Brad

      Well, the pro-fertilization movement faltered in Mississippi. That's happy news.

      November 9, 2011 at 9:12 am |
    • hippypoet

      dude, thats not only happy news, thats freaking great news!!!! where cnn is that article, that the bill didn't pass huh.... right, it can place an article about it but not the results...sounds biased to me.

      November 9, 2011 at 9:39 am |
    • Samsword

      Hippy, I totally agree. Time to start talking about hopeful subjects. =)

      November 9, 2011 at 9:46 am |
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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.