November 18th, 2011
04:50 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, November 18

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

From the Blog:

CNN: Survey: 3 in 10 Americans identify with Occupy, Tea Party movements
Both the Occupy Wall Street and Tea Party movements identify with the values of just under a third of the country, according to a survey released Thursday.

CNN: Vatican pledges legal action against Benetton over doctored pope-kissing-imam ad
The Vatican will attempt legal action against the United Colors of Benetton over an ad featuring a doctored picture of the pope kissing a male Muslim cleric, the Holy See announced Thursday, one day after the ad was unveiled and then pulled.

Tweet of the Day:

From @YAmericanMuslim: @andersoncooper #Islamophobi is real but we should keep in perspective. The same fear and prejudice existed w/ Irish, Jews, Catholics, etc.
(On Thursday, CNN’s Anderson Cooper focused his daily, syndicated talk show on practicing Islam in America and the controversial new TLC series, “All-American Muslim.”)

@CNNBelief’s follow of the day: Though the tweets aren’t frequent enough, @MichaelPaulson is a great source for religion news with an occasional New York focus. Paulson is the Metro religion editor for the New York Times.

Enlightening Reads:

Al Arabiya News: Pope brings message of hope for Africa – the continent of religions
Pope Benedict XVI brings a message of hope to Africa when he begins a three-day visit to Benin on Friday to meet Catholic leaders and pilgrims from across the continent.

Christian Post: Alleged White House Shooter Believed He Was Sent by Jesus to Assassinate Obama 'The Antichrist'
The alleged shooter who has been charged with attempting to assassinate President Obama Thursday, believed he was on a mission from Jesus and that Obama was the Antichrist, according to people that knew him.
(Fox5 in Washington has the video statement by Oscar Ortega-Hernandez.)

The Jewish Daily Forward: Spielberg in Talks for Moses Biopic
Steven Spielberg is in talks to direct a movie about the life of Moses. The film, “Gods and Kings,” is based on a script by Michael Green and Stuart Hazeldine. According to reports, Spielberg has entered formal talks with Warner Bros. to be the film’s director.

LA Times: Crystal Cathedral: Judge approves sale to Diocese of Orange
A bankruptcy judge chose the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange as the buyer of the Crystal Cathedral for $57.5 million after an emotional hearing in Santa Ana on Thursday night, despite pleas by congregants and others that the 56-year-old ministry stay where it is.

Faith in Public Life: People of Faith Support Minimum Wage Raise
Majorities of all religious groups favor increasing the minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.00 an hour, including black Protestants (87%), Catholics (73%), Americans who are religiously unaffiliated (68%), white mainline Protestants (61%) and white evangelical Protestants (61%).

Where sports and religion meet:

Tim Tebow has become a lightning rod for attention due to both his play as quarterback of the Denver Broncos and his outspokenness on his religious beliefs. Before Thursday’s game between the Broncos and the New York Jets, Tebow posted the bible verse “Colossians 3:15 GB2 “ to his Facebook.

The passage reads:

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.

Tebow started a widely discussed Internet meme when he knelt in prayer instead of celebrating on the field after the Broncos October 23 win against the Miami Dolphins. The website www.tebowing.com was built and defined Tebowing as the act of getting “down on a knee and start praying, even if everyone else around you is doing something completely different.”

Fans have even started to customize Tebow's number 15 jersey to read "Jesus" on the back.

And now fast forward to Thursday. The Bronco’s were marching down the field against the New York Jets. With less than two minutes left in the game, a situation arose that brings us our quote of the day:

He’ll be doing the Tebow behind bars tonight.

Brad Nessler said that after a fan ran onto the field and apparently "Tebowed" in front of the quarterback before being stopped by security.

After the distraction Tebow went on to score the game-winning touchdown on a quarterback scramble. He was seen praying on the sideline after the game.

Today’s Opinion:

Huffington Post: A Church Sanctuary for the Occupy Movement
“It's time to invite the Occupy Movement to church,” writes Jim Wallis, editor-in-chief of Sojourners. “Thanksgiving is the perfect occasion, he says. “Have some of the young protesters - the "99ers" as they're becoming known - from this rapidly growing movement over for a big holiday dinner!”

Join the conversation…
In a piece earlier this week, Aman Ali wrote that anytime he hears about a TV show coming out that features Muslims, his initial reaction is almost always “Oh man, please don’t suck. Please don’t suck.” According to Ali, TLC's "All American Muslims" doesn't meet that standard. People have engaged with this story all over the internet – it currently has over 1,500 comments.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. b4bigbang

    @IntlPol101: I was wondering the same thing myself, thinking wow, are all atheists such rude, insulting people? And the worst part is that the ones posting here apparently want us to believe that all the 'best' scientists are atheists too. I've read the posts "only a moron believes in a god".

    It didnt take long (one quick Google) to find that theyre wrong. Look at this:
    Elaine Howard Ecklund is a sociologist at Rice University.
    In the course of her research, Ecklund surveyed nearly 1,700 scientists from leading universities and interviewed 275 of them. She finds that most of what we believe about the faith lives of elite scientists is wrong. Nearly 50 percent of them are religious. Many others are what she calls “spiritual entrepreneurs,” seeking creative ways to work with the tensions between science and faith outside the constraints of traditional religion…..only a small minority are actively hostile to religion. Ecklund reveals how scientists–believers and skeptics alike–are struggling to engage the increasing number of religious students in their classrooms and argues that many scientists are searching for “boundary pioneers” to cross the picket lines separating science and religion.
    She's written a book about this, coming out soon from Oxford University Press.

    November 19, 2011 at 8:13 pm |
    • IntlPol101

      Exactly! My oldest child holds a physics degree, and my younger son is currently studying astronautical engineering. Science and faith are not mutually exclusive, regardless of what society wants us to believe. Thanks for the info on the soon-to-be-released book- should be an interesting read.

      November 20, 2011 at 8:32 am |
  2. IntlPol101

    I've been reading articles from American Atheist and http://www.infidels.org, another Atheist site- this excerpt is directly from http://atheists.org/religion: "religion is ridiculous. Religion is malicious, malevolent, and unworthy of respect. If you choose to ignore logic and knowledge in order to believe in an invisible magic man in the sky, or Santa Claus for that matter, you've made a ridiculous decision and we're not going to pretend it's "just another way of looking at things." Another site, http://www.infidels.org seems to exist solely to encourage arguing with anyone who disagrees with atheism. Now I know why most of the commentary on here is so hateful, aggressively militant and just plain disrespecful. I'm very disappointed to find so many atheists constantly "hanging out" in this forum, just waiting to attack anything that they disagree with. I was really hoping for gentle, honest discourse among people of all faiths and beliefs.

    November 19, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • Vert

      Talk about "not getting it"....
      Total mind blockage. Absolute blindness. Amazing.

      November 19, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
    • IntlPol101

      I would like to suggest that all of the "angry people" on here try organic gardening, it's very soothing and peaceful. No one can grow their own healthy, untainted food and remain mad and stressed. If that doesn't work, maybe you need more fiber in your diet 🙂

      November 19, 2011 at 6:46 pm |
    • Brad

      Hi InlPol101 – I am a believer in a magic man in the sky (actually not in the sky it's just traditional to look up sometimes in prayer). Were you looking for any atheists in particular?

      November 19, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
    • lombard

      IntlPol101-If you observe most of these handles exhibit anger because somewhere deep down in the psyche it has been deeply hurt. It is probably socially shunned and there is no place else to vent that anger and it does not have any life outside this blog it only logical place is to turn to this blog.
      Unless you know the case history/background of these characters it is futile to hold any kind of polite conversation. If i feel there is no point in holding a polite conversation, I would just move on to other positive things in life!

      November 19, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Root post is the ad hominem fallacy.


      November 19, 2011 at 8:29 pm |
    • IntlPol101

      Brad, not looking for anyone in particular, thanks! And Lombard, very true, "move on to more positive experiences" is sound advice.

      November 20, 2011 at 8:37 am |
    • IntlPol101

      Fallacy Spotting, oh wow, you're absolutely right! I had forgotten about the old Ad Hominen argument, learned back in my college years as something to be avoided during debate. My sincere apologies, that's what I get for generalizing. Certainly not all atheists, on this site or otherwise, are rude and angry- I did say "most commentary" on this forum, not all. However, back to the point, the quoted material in my original post really is from the American Atheist website, and I find it disturbing that this disrespectful dialogue (and much more) is being spread throughout the atheist community.

      November 20, 2011 at 9:49 am |
  3. AGuest9

    "The same fear and prejudice existed w/ Irish, Jews, Catholics, etc."

    Funny, I don't recall "Irish, Jews, Catholics" blowing up marketplaces, using mentally handicapped children as explosives "mules", nor killing 3,000 people with four hijacked jetliners.

    November 19, 2011 at 10:38 am |
    • Vert

      Ever hear of the IRA?
      Even Jews have done terrorist acts in the name of their religion.
      No religion is innocent. To add insult to injury, all religions are based on lies.
      But do continue acting like a fool and saying dumb things that are provably false.
      We wouldn't have anything to say without your stupidity to provide us with ammunition, you know.

      November 19, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
    • anotherGuest

      Peace – Vert. Think peaceful thoughts.

      November 19, 2011 at 9:46 pm |
  4. Occupy Belief Blog

    I'm here. Who brought the Spam?

    November 18, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • hippypoet

      spam with eggs and spam, side of spam with spam and fried spam!

      November 18, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
    • Occupy Belief Blog

      Spam musubi!

      November 18, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
    • hippypoet

      there's egg and bacon; egg sausage and bacon; egg and spam; egg bacon and spam; egg bacon sausage and spam; spam bacon sausage and spam; spam egg spam spam bacon and spam; spam sausage spam spam bacon spam tomato and spam;or Lobster Thermidor a Crevette with a mornay sauce served in a Provencale manner with shallots and aubergines garnished with truffle pate, brandy and with a fried egg on top and spam.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
    • hippypoet

      Have you got anything without spam?
      Well, there's spam egg sausage and spam, that's not got much spam in it.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
    • Occupy Belief Blog

      You forgot the many varieties of Spam sub sandwiches that are available and Spam Sushi and Spam right out of the can man! Spam!

      November 18, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
    • Bob

      Obligatory Monty Python spam spam spam spam.

      November 19, 2011 at 8:31 pm |
  5. Awkward Situations

    These speed read articles are useless.

    November 18, 2011 at 10:36 am |
    • Occupy Belief Blog

      Not if you are enjoying some delicious Spam!

      November 18, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
  6. Brad

    @hippypoet – I have to write some code this morning, but let's get back to that later on.

    November 18, 2011 at 9:11 am |
  7. Bo

    The alleged shooter may say that Jesus sent him to kill Obama, but not the Jesus I know. Has he been tested for drugs including alcohol?

    November 18, 2011 at 7:07 am |
    • hippypoet

      lol, “not the jesus you know”.. come on man, you may know a dude named jesus, yay, i know of 3... the man you are referring to has been dead for near 2000 years and you think you "know" him (1) at all (2) so much so that you even have a "different" relationship with him them others – huh – well son that is yet another sign of insanity. But what we ALL know of the man known as jesus is pretty universal... i think someone slipped the book out and mass produced it, just a thought....he is SAID to have done things, no proof nor even first hand eye wittness accounts, he is SAID to be to the son of god, something that unless he appears here , now, we will never be able to confirm as truth. People take the story, which is over 2000 years old, for some reason, they take it at face value.. i don't know about you but a book written even a couple hundred years ago is useless and beyond outdated unless it was on the cosmos, mathematics, or geometry.....oh and fairy tales such as canterbury, grimm, aesop, amoungst others , they carry moral lessons for society... and the bible, do we see a pattern here? You have verifiable fact type books, then moral carrying fictional stories of an oral tradition which as most oral traditions go, the base stories were built up on every time they were retold and so again every time they were rewritten and translated!!! In my opinion Aesop has more to teach then the bible! See as you get older the lessons you draw from the fables are different because you view them differently, but the bible is pretty much the same old tried snore inspiring sermons…over and over again. Let go and live by your own merit and show the world that love in jesus is a sad lie that never got anyone anywhere unless they themselves walked there!

      November 18, 2011 at 8:55 am |
    • Brad

      @hippypoet – Then approach it as fiction. Get to know the man Jesus as he is described even in manuscripts dated to 100+ years after his death. You seem a lot like him in some ways.

      November 18, 2011 at 9:02 am |
    • hippypoet

      that is an amazing compliment brad, thank you. But how do you mean like him, in what ways.. this i am very curious to know. However, i have approached it as fiction, and before that when i was young – it was fact, then i learned what a fact was... and started breaking down the bible – around age 7-9 , confessed atheist at 10, explained my disbelief to my grandparents – who almost puked... and i made my step-mother cry when she found out...she is a ccd teacher 🙂

      November 18, 2011 at 9:07 am |
    • Brad

      Your approach to people is similar. You will talk to most anyone (some people here might even be tax collectors or thieves). You hold to standards of morality and ethics and are exasperated with people who are inconsistent with theirs. You recognize some essential things about people. I remember your comment about the recent anti-semitic vandalism in Brooklyn: "people can be so vile!!!" They can, but still you keep coming back and usually you are decent and kind about it.

      November 18, 2011 at 9:46 am |
    • hippypoet

      your right, i do try to live by a set code of conduct, and hold others to there claims to such with great vigor.... but i am a human, i lie, cheat, steal, gamble... i think the appearence of humanity in ones savior is so frowned upon because of the claim of divinity – yet the morals in the bible are that of men.... the only real control one has is the outward interactions with others and if those who claim to hold to a moral code show a lack of understanding on said claims then it is the duty of those seekers of truth to right the wrongs committed in the names of others by ignorant fools. As i said, people can be so vile – therefore, i can be so vile as well, you too – but understanding is the first step to not doing something like that of others when hate is overwhelming! All i preach is understanding...and then i hope that thru that we can get over ourselves and move on towards a better brighter future as a whole, not a separated race all volleying the death card waiting for someone to drop it! Inshort i guess i am trying to say that all peachers of whatever go forth and discuss such things as i do with anyone who is willing to listen and converse over such things in a serious manner.
      So i guess i am like him, but i live in to learn, he learned to preach. but if i am the next messiah than walking on water would be fun....as well as the turning water to wine part – i'm shooting for zinfandel! again, thank you for the compliment. Weird as it sounds, this isn't the first time someone has compared me to the J man... it always catches me off guard thou.

      November 18, 2011 at 10:29 am |
  8. Jackson Baer

    People can critique Tebow all they want but he wins, period. He doesn't turn the ball over and is almost always the best runner on the field. He's a natural leader and makes those around him better. He may have been 9-20 passing on Thursday but should have been around 14-20 with all the dropped balls/near catches. He's only thrown 1 INT in five starts and is 4-1. I'll take that every day.


    November 18, 2011 at 5:03 am |
    • HellBent

      He's won as a starter, barely, against three teams with very questionable offenses. That's with considerable help from the Bronco's defense and special teams. That team can't win against a high-powered offense (see: Lions, Detroit) because they can't put enough points on the board and the defense isn't THAT good. I'm impressed by what he's been able to do so far, but he's not a long term answer – there's no way he's going to win a Super Bowl for Denver.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:03 pm |
    • Norman

      It is a blog about belief.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
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.