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Ken Ham: Why I'm debating Bill Nye about creationism
Bill Nye and Ken Ham will debate the origins of life Tuesday at the Creation Museum.
February 3rd, 2014
01:15 PM ET

Ken Ham: Why I'm debating Bill Nye about creationism

Editors note: Ken Ham will debate Bill Nye on February 4 at the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky, with CNN's Tom Foreman moderating. The debate will be livestreamed at CNN.com at 7 pm ET, and Piers Morgan Live will interview Ham and Nye on Tuesday at 9 ET.

WATCH TUESDAY NIGHT'S DEBATE HERE: http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/cvplive/cvpstream1.html

Opinion by Ken Ham, special to CNN

(CNN) - Public debates on evolution and creation have become increasingly rare. Several hundred well-attended debates were held in the 1970s and 1980s, but they have largely dried up in recent decades.

So I look forward to a spirited yet cordial debate on Tuesday with Bill Nye, the "Science Guy" of television fame.

I also look forward to the opportunity to help counter the general censorship against creationists' view of origins. While we are not in favor of mandating that creation be taught in public school science classes, we believe that, at the very least, instructors should have the academic freedom to bring up the problems with evolution.

Even though the two of us are not Ph.D. scientists, Mr. Nye and I clearly love science.

As a former science instructor, I have appreciated the useful television programs that he hosted and produced, especially when he practiced operational science in front of his audience.

He and I both recognize the wonderful benefits that observational, operational science has brought us, from cell phones to space shuttles. But operational science, which builds today’s technology, is not the same as presenting beliefs about the past, which cannot be tested in the laboratory.

For students, the evolution-creation discussion can be a useful exercise, for it can help develop their critical thinking skills.

MORE ON CNN: Bill Nye: Why I'm Debating Ken Ham 

Most students are presented only with the evolutionary belief system in their schools, and they are censored from hearing challenges to it. Let our young people understand science correctly and hear both sides of the origins issue and then evaluate them.

Our public schools arbitrarily define science as explaining the world by natural processes alone. In essence, a religion of naturalism is being imposed on millions of students. They need to be taught the real nature of science, including its limitations.

Nye, the host of a popular TV program for children, should welcome a scrutiny of evolution in the classrooms.

As evolution-creation issues continue to be in the news - whether it relates to textbook controversies or our debate - there is an increasingly bright spotlight on the research activities of thousands of scientists and engineers worldwide who have earned doctorates and are creationists.

On our full-time staff at Answers in Genesis, we have Ph.D.s in astronomy, geology, biology, molecular genetics, the history of science, and medicine. Yes, creationists are still a small minority in the scientific community, but they hold impressive credentials and have made valuable contributions in science and engineering.

I remember the time I spoke at a lunchtime Bible study at the Goddard Space Flight Center near Washington. I was thrilled to meet several scientists and engineers who accept the book of Genesis as historical and reject Darwinian evolution. They shared with me that a belief in evolution had nothing to do with their work on the Hubble Space Telescope. Why should our perspective about origins be censored?

Our young people and adults should be aware that considerable dissent exists in the scientific world regarding the validity of molecules-to-man evolution.

It’s an important debate, for what you think about your origins will largely form your worldview. If you believe in a universe that was created by accident, then there is ultimately no meaning and purpose in life, and you can establish any belief system you want with no regard to an absolute authority.

Ultimately, I have decided to accept an authority our infallible creator and his word, the Bible over the words of fallible humans.

Ken Ham is founder and CEO of Answers in Genesis (USA) and founder of the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky. The views expressed in this column belong to Ham.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Bible • Creationism • Culture wars • Evolution • Opinion • Science

soundoff (4,336 Responses)
  1. JHG

    You can debate facts, but not faith; so I am not sure what Nye expects to accomplish. I am not anti-religion, but there is zero scientific basis to support the book of Genesis, or any of the Bible for that matter. We know that whole sections of the bible were lifted from the Sumerians and others. But how do you debate that an all powerful god created those writings and 2,500 or so years ago created rock formations to "appear" billions of years old.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
  2. Jim Hahn

    Science can prove the absence of a creator, but a creator cannot prove the absence of science. A creationist's argument falls apart when they get to the point where they say "we are not capable of understanding a creator great enough to establish the world".

    Simple science, like carbon dating, proves that the bible is nothing more than a history book full of nice stories which have no basis in fact or science.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:40 pm |
    • Alex Cherry

      Actually, you can't prove a negative.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:59 pm |
      • Sungrazer

        Sure you can. It just depends on the size of the searchable universe. Suppose I say to you: "Prove there aren't any quarters in my right front pocket." It would then be a simple matter for you to empty the contents of my right front pocket. If no quarters come out, you have proven a negative.

        Now, it is true that "you can't prove a negative" is generally used with respect to the existence of deities. But it is "true" in this case only because the size of the searchable universe it too large for a human lifetime.

        February 4, 2014 at 7:03 pm |
    • epoxide

      Science cannot prove the absence of a creator, because the proposed 'creator' is unfalsifiable. Which is exactly the reason why it should be disregarded in the first place.

      February 4, 2014 at 7:02 pm |
  3. A Reader

    While there are still many unknowns regarding evolution, to go from there to the historical veracity of Genesis is a huge non-sequitur. It's very hard to argue against evolution (descent with modification). The only question left is how it came about. You can accept the fact of evolution and believe in God (google "Theistic Evolution").

    February 4, 2014 at 6:38 pm |
    • LinCA

      @A Reader

      You said, "You can accept the fact of evolution and believe in God"
      Sure you can, but why would you?

      There is not a single piece of evidence even suggesting there is such a creature. There is no reason to believe it exists. There is a lot of evidence that shows how gullible people are and how they indoctrinate their children in their beliefs.

      February 4, 2014 at 7:01 pm |
  4. DanBun

    Yet "fallible humans" wrote the Bible....

    February 4, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
  5. sbalhara

    Dear God, Help us kids, we have nothing better to do, but waste time online.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
    • Richard

      So, you bleat to a non-existent cartoon character from a time before cartoons. Pardon me, while I laugh at you.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
    • troll spotter

      aren't you the clever one typing with one hand

      February 4, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
  6. Kimo

    I'm a neuroscientist and I believe in God. However, that does not make me a creationist. All cultures have their creation myths and ours is no exception. It is how people explained the world in the absence of scientific knowledge. Ask the average American to explain how evolution works and they don't have a clue but they will deny it based on beliefs passed down from generations when the evidence was not available. By the way, not all engineers are scientists. Asking how cells work, how ecosystems work and so on is not the same as figuring out how to build a missile or a bridge. In the biological sciences, at least, just about everyone is politically liberal and I assume that is because they are people who question beliefs and do not simply adhere to the beliefs of their parents.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
    • Vic

      [
      On our full-time staff at Answers in Genesis, we have Ph.D.s in astronomy, geology, biology, molecular genetics, the history of science, and medicine. Yes, creationists are still a small minority in the scientific community, but they hold impressive credentials and have made valuable contributions in science and engineering.
      ]

      The belief in "Creationism" does not conflict with "Empirical Science" since it is—"Creationism," that is—about the "Origin" of the universe and life in it. In other words, "Creationism" does not deal with the mechanics of what exists, rather, it explains the "Origin" of what exists.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:40 pm |
      • midwest rail

        "...rather, it explains the "Origin" of what exists."
        Correction – it purports to explain what exists.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:59 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        "The belief in "Creationism" does not conflict with "Empirical Science"

        Ummm, yes, it really does.

        February 4, 2014 at 7:01 pm |
  7. kevinmharper

    1) DNA is genetic information. Information necessitates an intellect. It is a code, and a code requires a coder.

    2) I'd like Mr. Nye to explain the evolutionary process whereby genetic information gets added to the genome. Natural selection is a real process, but by definition it involves the subtraction of genetic information from the gene pool, not the addition of new information.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
    • Sungrazer

      Apologetics 101. The bit about loss of information is a dead giveaway. You should read about evolution from sources that aren't creationist, Christian, or apologetic. Then we can have a real discussion on the perceived merits and flaws of evolution.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
    • h l george

      We 'interpret what is 'information' and even give it that label. How are the recessive genes for growing tails that you carry and will pass along to your children, if you unfortunately procreate, working for you?

      February 5, 2014 at 2:32 am |
  8. dg

    Why is Ken Ham so hung up on the past? The Bible doesn't say creation stopped after the world was made. It's an ongoing thing.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
    • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

      Creation ENDED on the 7th day.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        According to Bronze Age Middle Eastern nomads. What other creation myths have you studied?

        February 4, 2014 at 6:51 pm |
      • dg

        Isaiah 45:7 "I form light and create darkness,
        I make weal and create woe,
        I am the LORD, who do all these things."

        I could go on...

        February 4, 2014 at 6:59 pm |
  9. thetruth

    Don't bother Nye, Creationists don't live in reality......

    February 4, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
  10. Wisdomforlife

    Some of my concerns about this debate:

    1. That Ken Ham will not use the term evolution in a careless way but will distinguish macro and micro evolution.

    2. That Ken Ham will be careful in his use of scientific evidence and respectful of the work scientist do that is not about the issue of creation.

    3. That Ken Ham will not suggest that the Bible requires a specific age for the earth and then wrongly imply that those who take an old earth view are rejecting the authority of the Bible.

    The more important conversation is about faith and science http://thinkpoint.wordpress.com/2013/08/23/confusing-faith-and-science/

    February 4, 2014 at 6:25 pm |
  11. sbalhara

    remember people, put a period at end of every sentence

    February 4, 2014 at 6:20 pm |
    • King of Darkness

      I see what you did there! Great metaphor for what Christians have been trying to do for centuries.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:36 pm |
  12. Richard

    "While we are not in favor of mandating that creation be taught in public school science classes,..."

    But, this is a lie.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
  13. Richard

    The debate should be interesting – Bill Nye against Fred Flintstone.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
  14. Richard

    "Ultimately, I have decided to accept an authority — our infallible creator and his word, the Bible — over the words of fallible humans."

    You should actually read the Bible and think about what it really says. Then, you will fully understand why you should be thoroughly embarrassed to let others know that you believe in it.

    February 4, 2014 at 6:13 pm |
    • Josh

      Ultimately you wont get anything with a closed mind

      February 4, 2014 at 6:16 pm |
      • Richard

        I read the Bible cover to cover. I was raised by a Southern Baptist preacher. I probably know the Bible and its history better than you. The Bible is a story about an ancient people and their search for reconciliation with their God thingy. You and I were not included as characters in the story. It's idiotic to pretend, otherwise.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:21 pm |
    • BNick

      "BEHOLD MY INFALLIBLE CREATIONS! Oh, by the way, your primary source of heat and light causes cancer. Best of luck with that!"

      February 4, 2014 at 6:34 pm |
      • Christian Crusader

        The Sun didn't cause cancer before the fall.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:53 pm |
  15. Marv

    Evolutionary "belief" system?!?! LOLOLOLOL Ken Ham is ignorant.

    Is math a "belief" system? Or, is there empirical evidence that one unit of an apple added to another unit gives us 2?
    We have BILLIONS of years of empirical evidence across multiple sciences (geology, biology, physics, anthropology, paleontology etc etc etc) that PROVE evolution.

    No Mr. Ham ( appropriate name) your laughable creationism is a "belief"....

    February 4, 2014 at 6:13 pm |
    • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

      What is your evidence that evolution is true? The second law of thermodynamics states that evolution is untrue, and that is a LAW, not a theory, like evolution.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
      • OTOH

        @SSE

        The second law of thermodynamics does not nullify evolution. Read some things about it:

        For starters:
        http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=441

        February 4, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
      • pablo

        Hahahahaha oh my god, you actually said "second law of thermodynamics" and "evolution is just a theory" in the same sentence. Please tell me you're a parody.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          Actually, no, I'm not a parody. Where is your evidence?

          February 4, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
        • Christian Crusader

          Evolution IS a theory. Otherwise they would call it the LAW of evolution. Geesh, you guys claim to know science but know nothing about it. I've never read a science book in my life and I know more than you!

          February 4, 2014 at 6:42 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          Thank you for this post!

          February 4, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
      • Vernon

        ...I'm sorry I've looked up the second law of thermodynamics and nowhere does it say that evolution is false. All it says is that net entropy can increase over time, which includes entropic decreases and increases.
        What universe are you using for your physical laws?

        February 4, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          What the second law of thermodynamics is saying is that DNA cannot just be created out of thin air–there has to be a SOURCE. So where was the source before the big bang?

          February 4, 2014 at 6:34 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          What you're saying doesn't make sense. The universe was created at the big bang, gradually elements were formed, the right combination of elements and conditions caused life to be formed, DNA was not created immediately it evolved, life evolved.
          Evolution takes it from there.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:57 pm |
      • theuberhuber

        The second law of thermodynamics states what again? WOW, YOU SIR ARE A PERFECT EXAMPLE AS TO WHY WE NEED NO DEBATE.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:34 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          Where is your evidence that evolution is true?

          February 4, 2014 at 6:35 pm |
        • Skylar

          The second law of thermodynamics states that things go from order to disorder. Thus, things can not gain information on their own.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:50 pm |
      • pablo

        Since you have proclaimed yourself a 15 year old girl, and I have no reason to doubt you, all I'm gonna say is this: Hold onto the feeling of thinking you know everything, because you're going to miss it when it's gone.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:49 pm |
  16. JustOneOfMany

    Mr. Ham & Mr. Nye, lets be clear for a moment; evolution does not speak to the origin of life. It only refers to what happens once life arrives, the manner of radiation. Creation/Origin theories deal with the arrival of life. So this argument is not very helpful. Even if we were to confuse evolution with abiogenesis ( which it is not ), then we would need to be talking about how science has found what I call the 'missing equation'. This would mean we could all point to a balanced chemical equation where all of the reactants are non-life and at least one of the products is life. I call it missing because it has yet to be discovered. This would be the right debate once found. It would be whether a supernatural force could have created the chemical equation or no ( by creating the laws and forces of the universe which). But again, herein lies the limit. True science cannot make a reference to prove or disprove anything it cannot measure. So...this would need to be a short debate with Mr. Nye conceding that fact. Done. Ok..too boring. Lets go farther, lets talk about the Planck Epoch. Ahhh. Here we go. There is a distance at 10-43 seconds after the big bang where science cannot detect, measure, or hypothesize what was happening because all of the forces and elements emerged ( therefore laws of science breakdown) at the Planck Epoch. We can agree that the forces and elements which emerge from the Planck Epoch *eventually* lead to life. But once more, science is not equipped to opine whether that array of forces and elements which emerged were random vs chosen by a creator. So what is all the fuss about? Will the scientists please stop trying to use science in the way that it actually cannot be used? Lets bottle all this energy and cure cancer instead. The forces and elements that emerged from the Planck Epoch have given us enough to work – we really do not need to know who owns the casino in order to play do we?

    February 4, 2014 at 6:12 pm |
    • Richard

      There is no debate, here. There are only Creationists trotting out some of the most ridiculous ideas ever conceived by mankind and pretending that they're true, and everyone else laughing at them.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:35 pm |
      • JustOneOfMany

        Richard, for a scientist to develop a competing meme ( the world exists not because of a creator) would need to substantiate their own competing meme with data, evidence, testing. In that light, it is *ridiculous* for a scientist to state whether or not the forces and elements that emerged from the Planck Epoch were set in motion by a creator or not. This is because even if it were true that the array of elements that emerged from the Planck Epoch were designed, science cannot prove or disprove that. Therefore the debate is useless albeit for this reasoning alone and no other.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:56 pm |
  17. Someone

    While we're at it, why don't they debate if the snow in GA was real or plastic???????

    February 4, 2014 at 6:11 pm |
  18. Christian Crusader

    YEAH! Those scientists think they're sooooooo smart! They find tons of evidence for god but call it evolution. I know I've never studied science in my life, but I obviously know god is real which is way more than those ignorant scientists have ever done! Like how stupid do you have to be to think your grandfather was a rock!!!!

    February 4, 2014 at 6:10 pm |
    • JimBoston

      Somewhere in the bible it states that god can make people out of rocks.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:12 pm |
      • Christian Crusader

        With God, all Things are possible. Noah's ark, the Flood, Adam and Eve, talking Snakes. If God wants it to happen then it Shall be Done.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
    • TexInd

      LOL.. Darn Dad, I told you to put down that beer and get off our computer so you can find a job!!!!!

      February 4, 2014 at 6:20 pm |
  19. Detached Observor

    Can any creationist explain where all the water came from that flooded the earth so that all the mountains were covered, even as high as Mount Everest? Where did the water come from that could flood the whole planet to a depth of 5 1/2 miles?

    You're not allowed to say "God can do anything."

    February 4, 2014 at 6:08 pm |
    • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

      I can answer. There is scientific evidence that massive underwater volcanoes exploded in the ocean, releasing a high amount of heated water. This mixture of hot water, along with the cold salt water, created large waves that swept over the continents. There is a large amount of evidence for this in the ocean–go take a look.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:11 pm |
      • Detached Observor

        The Bible doesn't talk about a tidal wave. It said it rained for 40 days and nights. Someone calculated that it had to be raining at 25 feet an hour to flood the water that much. Your volcano theory is very, very sad, and indicative of a mind unable to think for itself.

        February 4, 2014 at 6:16 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        There is no evidence of that plus where did the water come from and where did it go?

        February 4, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          There is a high ammount of evidence, plus, there is a theory that is almost proven that the earth is actually full of water, instead of a hard, hot core like is being suggested. Please look it up and then come back with firm evidence.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:18 pm |
        • epoxide

          @Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          LOL, you have got to be joking. The Earth is full of water? That would explain why volcanoes erupt with water and not molten earth and rock, right?

          It just goes to show that creationism not only flies in the face of established biology, but ALL science, including geology, chemistry, and physics. Creationists will dismiss everything we've learned about the world up until this point to shoehorn their theory into the scientific narrative.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:22 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          Hey–http://www.livescience.com/1312-huge-ocean-discovered-earth.html

          Please re-explain your hypothesis–with EVIDENCE.

          Sorry, I said volocanoes. I meant this–http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA304244

          February 4, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Current thinking is that the core is solid metal – mostly an iron nickle alloy. If the mantle weren't full of roiling molten iron we wouldn't have a magnetic field and live would never have thrived from all the gamma rays and other solar radiation.

          The core is not water. You would need approximately 4x the total amount of water on the planet today – including all the oceans and the atmosphere to flood the world to a height of ~9km (the height of Everest).

          Then where does 75% of that water go after the flood?

          There isn't a global plug hole and the water is not under the crust. If it were there'd be geysers of superheated steam everywhere.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          In the medieval ages, the idea that the earth was flat was proven wrong. Are you saying that the idea of the earth's core being hard cannot be proven wrong?

          February 4, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
        • epoxide

          @Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          A few things:

          1. The resource you linked does not dispute that the Earth is largely filled with molten earth, and that the core is composed of rock. You stated that the Earth's core was composed of water and NOT magma/rock, but not even the resource you linked claims this.
          2. The volume of water under the Earth's crust is not nearly sufficient to support the claims of those who propose a global flood. You would need more than triple the volume of all the Earth's oceans to flood every point on the Earth's surface – a reservoir the size of the Atlantic just won't cut it.
          3. The idea that these reservoirs emptied themselves – and then re-filled themselves after a month is preposterous.

          >Please re-explain your hypothesis–with EVIDENCE.

          http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/search/topicbrowse2.php?topic_id=46

          This page contains a wealth of information on evolutionary theory.

          All – and I repeat, ALL of established science supports an old Earth, and a universe that is billions of years old, not thousands as Ken Ham proposes.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:52 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          The deduction that the core is solid dates only to 1936 (according to wikipedia).

          The nice thing about science (unlike religious absolutism) is that scientists are willing to modify theories when better evidence becomes avaialble.

          What evidence do you have that the core is full of extra water to produce global floods.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:53 pm |
    • JimBoston

      The water and sewer department?

      February 4, 2014 at 6:11 pm |
    • SRQIggy

      You only need to say one word to a so-called "Creationist" to end any debate whatsoever.....FOSSILS.

      February 4, 2014 at 6:11 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      And where did it go?

      February 4, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
      • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

        Some of it evaporated, some receeded back in the ocean, covering large ammounts of land. Did anyone every wonder why 3/4 of the earth is WATER?

        February 4, 2014 at 6:20 pm |
        • Detached Observor

          Now you are REALLY showing your ignorance. You think 'evaporated' means it disappears. Water does not simply vanish. You really need to read a basic science book as they contain only verifiable facts.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:24 pm |
        • Scriptural Scientific Evidence

          There is EVIDENCE that the earth's atmosphere was different before the flood–a lot thinner. An increase in water could change this. That is a fact.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
        • epoxide

          >Some of it evaporated

          Evaporated water doesn't just disappear, it falls back to the Earth. Remember the water cycle? That's elementary school science, there.

          >some receeded back in the ocean, covering large ammounts of land.
          So let me get this straight. The entire surface of the planet was covered in water, and then it receded... somehow. If the entire planet is covered in water, then that means the entire planet was ocean. How does it recede back to where it already was?

          >Did anyone every wonder why 3/4 of the earth is WATER?

          70% of the SURFACE of the Earth is covered in water – the Earth is not composed of 70% water. There is not enough water in the ocean to cover the entire surface of the Earth, let alone to such a degree as to cover Mount Everest.

          February 4, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
        • Christian Crusader

          Totally agree dude. 3/4 water!!! How can you deny that? God is glorious and made the water go away. Stop denying the truth!

          February 4, 2014 at 6:30 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          3/4 of the Earth's surface is covered by water – not 3/4 of the earth.

          There are about 1.366B km^3 of water on the planet. It's a tiny fraction.

          You need almost an additional 3x this amount to flood Mt. Everest (almost 9km above sea level).

          This might help you understand better (from the USGS)
          http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/earthhowmuch.html

          February 4, 2014 at 6:30 pm |
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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.