Faith-healing follower sentenced for not reporting sex abuse
Feb 15, 2019

By the Associated Press NAMPA, Idaho — An Idaho woman who refused to report her husband’s yearslong sexual abuse of young relatives and instead prayed for “the demon” to leave him was ordered Thursday to spend a year in a prison treatment program. Judge Christopher Nye said that if Sarah Kester, 51, fails to successfully …

In Iowa, Religious Student Groups Get a License to Discriminate Against LGBTQ People
Feb 15, 2019 · 1 

By Lisa Needham A federal district court in Iowa ruled last week in favor of a religious student group that openly rejects LGBTQ individuals—a victory in the ongoing conservative battle to give religious organizations license to discriminate in the name of faith. The case stems from a conservative Christian student group at the University of Iowa that sought …

‘Tennessee Natural Marriage Defense Act’ seeks to strip gay marriage rights
Feb 14, 2019

By Gwen Aviles Nearly four years after the Supreme Court made same-sex marriage legal throughout the U.S., Republican lawmakers in Tennessee are attempting to turn back the clock with a bill aimed at banning gay marriage in the state. The “Tennessee Natural Marriage Defense Act,” which was first proposed in 2016, seeks to “defend natural …

Virginia’s two Catholic bishops release names of 58 priests they say have been credibly accused of sexually abusing minors
Feb 14, 2019

By Michelle Boorstein and Sarah Pulliam Bailey Virginia’s two Catholic dioceses on Wednesday released lists of clergy who officials say were deemed “credibly accused” of sexually abusing youth, the latest in a slew of U.S. dioceses to make public such names amid a national crisis over clerical abuse and coverups. The Diocese of Arlington, which …

Democratic House Chair Purposely Omits “So Help Me God” When Administering Oath
Feb 13, 2019

By Hemant Mehta When the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on gun violence Wednesday morning, Democratic Rep. Jerrold Nadler, the chair of the group, administered the oath to witnesses who were about the testify. When he did that, he left out the phrase “So help me God.” A Republican questioned him about that immediately afterward. Nadler chalked …

School cancels Darwin play after complaints from Christian parents
Feb 13, 2019

By Sophie Lewis An elementary school in Britain has canceled its performances of a musical on evolution after complaints from some Christian parents over some of its lyrics. About 90 students were preparing to perform “Darwin Rocks!,” a musical about Charles Darwin and his theory of evolution, next month at Hartford Manor Primary School — …

Trump lauds religious adoption agencies for refusing service to same-sex couples
Feb 13, 2019

By Zack Ford President Donald Trump openly endorsed discrimination by foster and adoption agencies, speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast Thursday morning. After welcoming Chad and Melissa Buck, a couple from Michigan who he applauded for having adopted five children, he said, “Unfortunately, the Michigan adoption charity that brought the Buck family together is now …

Day of Prayer bill passes Kentucky House Education Committee hearing
Feb 13, 2019

By Chris Williams FRANKFORT, Ky. (WHAS11) – A Day of Prayer in Kentucky schools bill, also known as House Bill 166, passed during a hearing held by the Kentucky House Education Committee on Feb. 12. This bill would designate the last Wednesday of September as A Day of Prayer for students in Kentucky. The bill’s sponsor …

How Many Creationists Are There in America?
Feb 13, 2019 · 1 

By Cary Funk, Greg Smith, and David Masci More than a century and a half after Charles Darwin published his groundbreaking thesis on the development of life, evolution remains a contentious topic in the United States. Most biologists and other scientists contend that evolutionary theory convincingly explains the origins and development of life on Earth. …

Supreme Court Conservatives Allow Execution of Muslim Prisoner Despite Religious Freedom Violation
Feb 11, 2019

By Andrew L. Seidel The five conservative justices on the U.S. Supreme Court were in such a rush to see Domineque Ray executed that they ignored the First Amendment. This is because the condemned prisoner was a Muslim, not a member of the favored religion: Christianity. Two weeks before his execution, Ray met with the warden, …

Abuse of Faith
Feb 11, 2019

By Robert Downen, Lise Olsen, and John Tedesco First of three parts Thirty-five years later, Debbie Vasquez’s voice trembled as she described her trauma to a group of Southern Baptist leaders. She was 14, she said, when she was first molested by her pastor in Sanger, a tiny prairie town an hour north of Dallas. …

Supreme Court blocks Louisiana abortion law from taking effect
Feb 8, 2019

By Ariane de Vogue The Supreme Court Thursday blocked a Louisiana abortion access law from going into effect for now, dealing a victory to opponents of the law who argued it could decimate “safe and legal” abortions in the state. The order was 5-4 with Chief Justice John Roberts joining the court’s four liberals voting …