Belief Beat

Belief Beat


PopeWatch: Mistresses of Priests Write to Vatican, Urging End to Mandatory Celibacy

posted by Nicole Neroulias

Personally and professionally, I’m always up for discussing the Catholic Church’s insistence on mandatory celibacy for its clergy, particularly when most people still don’t know that this wasn’t an original requirement and that there are exceptions made for married converts and eastern rite Catholics in places like Ukraine.

While the celibacy debate has floated around for decades — cue that haunting “Thorn Birds” theme music – it reliably surfaces in clergy sex abuse scandal coverage. Sexual frustration hasn’t been pinpointed as the root cause of any specific cases, but logic dictates that the Catholic Church would have a much wider pool of applicants if married men were eligible for ordination (as they are in Orthodox Christian churches, though they can’t go on to become bishops).

So, I found this story interesting today: about three dozen Italian women who say they are romantically involved with Roman Catholic priests have sent a letter to Pope Benedict, urging him to end mandatory celibacy.

Maybe this will prompt their “sisters” in other countries to write in, as well — America must have at least as many clergy mistresses as Italy, if not many more. The Daily Mail reports that tens of thousands of men have left the priesthood since the 1960s, after having relationships with women. (Remember Father Alberto Cutié, the popular Florida pastor caught cavorting with his girlfriend? He’s now a married Episcopal priest, and he and his wife are expecting a baby.)

Thoughts?

*Click here to subscribe to Belief Beat and click here to follow Belief Beat on Twitter.



Advertisement
Comments read comments(27)
post a comment
Robert C

posted May 28, 2010 at 12:54 pm


If they find it immpossible to keep a vow then they are not suitable for the priesthood. They knew the drill going in. Besides most of the abuse cases involve homosexual priests. Even if gays were sanctioned to marry as a priest under church law, (which won’t happen,) that wouldn’t preclude incidents of abuse. Finally, since there are this many straight romantic relationships on the sly, would the ability to marry actually increase vocations. I doubt it.



report abuse
 

kenneth

posted May 28, 2010 at 2:30 pm


The ability to marry would widen the pool of HEALTHY men in seminaries. Yes there are people who are able to live out celibacy in a positive way. Most people, and most priests, are not among them. I also don’t buy the bit about it being an excusively gay problem. Growing up in a Catholic grade school, there were three full time priests in the parish. One was rumored to have an unnatural affection for the young lads in the junior high. Nothing ever proven as far as I know. Another was in a longstanding affair with the mom of a friend of mine. It was an open secret in the parish. The third guy, I don’t know. He maybe was celibate or at least discreet enough to drive out of town for whatever he might have been into.



report abuse
 

Heretic_for_Christ

posted May 28, 2010 at 2:56 pm


I’m sorry, but my inner adolescent could not help from giggling at this story — letters to the Vatican from women having affairs with priests!?!
And — I could not make this up — the Captcha words I am entering to post this message are “the unwed.”



report abuse
 

Grumpy Old Person

posted May 28, 2010 at 3:35 pm


“Besides most of the abuse cases involve homosexual priests.”
Wrong, Robert C. Most involved pedophile priests. Most homosexual men I know (and I know a LIT) are attracted to other men, not little boys OR little girls.
I read the letter in another source, and the women who wrote it are correct – celibacy is a MAN-made (literally) ‘institution’. There’s no indication that Christ Himself required any of His followers be celibate.
It’s just a plainly stupid policy.
CAPTCHA: “curbing the” !!!



report abuse
 

Grumpy Old Person

posted May 28, 2010 at 3:37 pm


“I know a LOT”
Sorry for the poor typing.
New CAPTCHA: “families to”
Is this a built in irony machine, or what?



report abuse
 

Anan E. Maus

posted May 28, 2010 at 6:42 pm


I am a former monastic. I lived in a celibate community.
I think that the celibate life is not for everyone. And if people do not want to continue in the celibate life, they should leave the monastic community and become a lay member of the church.
I don’t think there should be any shame in doing that.
I also think that younger folks might think about taking out a few years of their life and entering into the monastic life. And then, if they don’t want to continue with the celibate life, they should leave.
In other words, I am in favor of a very long and extended program for novices…giving them 3 full years before they make their final commitment.
And, I think that the monastic life should also be willing to accept retirees who, at 55 or 60 or older want to spend their remaining years as a celibate devoted in that manner.
So, I think the solution is more options. I think an entire life of celibacy is meant for only a very small percentage of people. And if people are forced into something beyond their real spiritual calling, it will always create problems.



report abuse
 

pagansister

posted May 28, 2010 at 7:32 pm


A E Maus: Thank you for your personal insight into this situation.
I find this whole thing rather funny…the mistresses of “celibate” priests writing Benny to ask him to end mandatory celibacy! Somehow I don’t think Benny will care. He will spout the usual RC rhetoric, and dismiss the whole idea.



report abuse
 

franzwa

posted May 29, 2010 at 9:38 am


I don’t know what to say or what to think except that the the title of the post is interesting. I can only speak about what i know, however, this is knowledgeable.



report abuse
 

joe gonzalez

posted May 29, 2010 at 10:58 am


sexuality is the rabid SS guard that keeps the people in line in the Catholic Church. Ask any sincere priest, and he’ll tell you that 95% of the sins he absolves in the confessional are sexual in nature. it is an overriding obsession in what should be the service of God. There are seven deadly sins, among which you’ll find pride, greed, anger, sloth, envy, gluttony and lust. Lust, which is described as an disordinate inclination towards indiscriminate sexual gratification, is – according to Saint Thomas Aquinas – the least pernicious of all. Why, he even went so far as to say that, for this world to function more or less normally, prostitution had to be tolerated. Wherefrom, then, this obssession – in all it’s manifestations – with sex ? Like I said, it’s the SS guard. It is a biological function, and if you control the use of an animal’s normal biological function, you control the animal, much as a dog-collar controls a dog. Peter, the first pope, was married and remained so all his life ; and so were the inmmense majority of the other disciples. Jesus never spoke a commandment of celibacy ; he just said : ” whoever can bear to be a eunuch for the sake of the Kingdom of God, let him do it.” Whoever can bear – implying very few are suited to the task. But when you set up a club, you might set up unreasonable membership duties that will unreasonably enslave you to it. That’s all there is to this. If we take to task the real sins ( errors ) besetting our disintegrating world, we must conclude that sexuality is not, as St. Thomas underlined, the gravest of matters. But then, to be an SS guard, you have to be willing to kill at command and without qualms.



report abuse
 

Robert C

posted May 29, 2010 at 7:09 pm


Thank you Anan for your thoughtful post. I agree with your alternate options. However, I find significant value and appreciate the definitive traditional origins for the practice within the church. First of all Nicole’s statement is only partially correct. Christ did not directly mandate celibacy. However, many people labor under the misconception that celibacy is a rule that had been mandated for the Latin/catholic priesthood in recent centuries and that the ‘primitive’ church had no such mandate. The formalization of structured religious life (monasteries) under St. Benedict in the 5th century mistakenly gives unwarranted emphasis to this belief. This belief is in error. Up until the councils of the early 4th century
(Elvira, Trent, etc.), married men were allowed to be ordained, however the practice in the early church from the apostles specifically stipulated the obligation of ‘continence’ for all priests, which is the complete abstinence after ordination of sexual conjugation for even those who were ordained married. There are many references to this, but here is one thoughtful analysis of the current argument for interesting referral. http://chiesa.espresso.repubblica.it/articolo/1343466?eng=y
What we have in these modern “letters” from those passionate Italian housewives (no referral to the desperate housewives of New Jersey intended) is a 21st century version of ‘concunbinage’. Continence was reconfirmed fully under the Gregorian period as part of the reform to combat just such a practice. The second Lateran Council encapsulated the Gregorian reforms into canon law. The sacrament of Holy Orders is foremost a state that emphasizes the sacrifices of Christ and not unimportantly, a vocation. Its’ theological foundations are best reviewed in a comprehensive book on the topic by the late Cardinal Alfons Stickler in his book The Case for Clerical Celibacy. http://www.ignatius.com/Products/CCEL-P/the-case-for-clerical-celibacy.aspx
The sacred nature of celibacy is one that is not only appreciated by the ordained catholic rite but has been historically important to many religious and secular organizations and individuals. Elizabeth Abbott’s fascinating work on the topic ‘A History of Celibacy ‘ is available through Amazon. She traces celibacy as a worldwide practice, rarely discussed, but one that has shaped religious lives, from before the vestal virgins ( which neatly refutes the ‘man made’ theorem) up till the modern day. From shamans to athletes, it is found in every society of the past, practiced by both the anonymous and the legendary. Daoists sects were admonished to avoid all casual contact with the opposite sex, and several rules of the Laojun yibai bashi jie (The One Hundred and Eighty Precepts of Lord Lao, the key code of the Celestial Masters that has influenced all later sets of Daoist precepts prohibit all sexual activities for priests. The Buddhist way of life incorporated from the Hindu the practice of Brahmacharya. That denotes (as quoted from Wikipedia) a “practice of strict celibacy. As such, in non-Hindu traditions Brahmacharya denotes a mode of life devoted to spiritual endeavour in which sexual continence is the guiding factor. A Brahmachari therefore is a male (and brahmacharini a female) who observes sexual abstinence unless intentionally procreating. These characteristics correspond to Western notions of the religious life as practiced in monastic settings.” From Sannyasa to yoga to the rule of celibacy in the Buddhist religion, Eastern thought is prominent in its acceptance of the values of celibacy even to Mahatma Gandhi, perhaps the 20th century’s most prominent celibate. His own experiences in self-control and desirelessness led him to pronounce: “Civilization consists not in the multiplication of wants but in the deliberate and voluntary reduction of wants.” This belief influenced him to renounce conjugal prerogatives with his wife in his mid thirties, till his death. Celibacy then is a form of self-denial, which is practiced to detach from one’s desires. It is a spiritual idea that one must first detach from one’s desires in order to cultivate knowing God. Gandhi was not alone. Isaac Newton, Joan of Arc, Leonardo da Vinci, Elizabeth I, were only some of the non clerical individuals whose focus required them to practice the art of sexual denial.
I refute that non-celibacy equates with healthy. That is a residue of thought leftover from sixties ‘hippiness’ and the sexual revolution that has no context for spiritual ministry. A candidate for the priesthood should be fully able to live out a life of celibacy in a psychologically healthy way if the decision to proceed with ordination is not only an educated one, but made at a time in life where one’s own sexual libido has been recognized and understood. Preparatory seminaries are the bane of the priesthood in this regard.
I am very correct in stating that most abuse cases indeed do involve homosexually inclined priests who are technically not pedophiles, but Ephebophiliatists. The prominent percentage of abuse cases involves post pubescent males from 14 to 18 years of age. How nice for you Grumpy that you are acquainted with many gay men. Good show. But that does not make you correct in your assumptions. Being a very gay man I can assure you that there is as equal a proportion of gay men who fancy boys to those straight men who fancy girls, such as Polanski, Woody, Jerry Lee, et al. For many years the gay community embraced and supported, even if tacitly, a visible organization called NAMBLA, The North American Man Boy Love Association. They still exist and march in gay pride parades to this day.
Not everything about my gay brethren is wholesome, as they have historically practiced the “disordinate inclination towards indiscriminate sexual gratification”. Please do not misinterpret Aquinas. His belief on lust is that it applies chiefly to venereal pleasures.” His reason is that venereal pleasures “more than anything else work the greatest havoc in a man’s mind” and that they most of all “debauch a man’s mind.” He does not condone prostitution; he simply includes it within the category of ‘simple fornication’ which is condemned by theological law. Your reference regards Aquinas’ view on applying sin to human civil law. He reasons that “Though human law is founded on natural law, they are not identical. Nor is the human law an application of divine law in everyday living, since the purpose of human law is the temporal tranquility of the state, whereas the end of divine law is eternal happiness.” You are mistakenly applying his rationalization to the ministry which was not his intent. Here is an in depth explanation of his teachings on the topic. http://www.illinoismedieval.org/EMS/VOL13/13ch4.html
Having a ‘wider pool of applicants’ could be beneficial to college admissions offices or the military but selecting individuals who feel called to a vocation is something else entirely. In this regard the church has not done well over this past century. Hence perhaps the apparition of “Rosa Mystica” (Mystical Rose) at Montichiari, who manifesting the three daggers through her heart explained that the second sword meant priests, monks, and nuns who live in deadly sin with the contrary white rose symbolizes those who must sacrifice and renew their vows. Benedict will not consider the plea of the desperate housewives of Rome since in their somewhat sad exercise of writing they blithely illustrate why there is such a need for the practice in the first place.



report abuse
 

Deacon John M. Bresnahan

posted May 29, 2010 at 8:19 pm


Finally–some intelligent,well-researched real history comments by Robert C. Too bad most of what we read on the internet on the issue of celibacy is by ignorant bigots whose knowledge of history and world cultures is about zero. Sadly, many of these are great promoters of Kinsey’s fraudulent surveys and the warped Freudianism that permeates our modern American culture.
Ghandi in his day, and, today, the Dalai Lama have both strongly endorsed celibacy. But they are the darlings of the left and liberals so they never stick knives into them on this issue the way they do to Catholics. And they will never admit that celibacy is not some sort of papal invention or plot, but is a human endeavor valued in many cultures and religions.



report abuse
 

Heretic_for_Christ

posted May 29, 2010 at 10:43 pm


The scholarly history lesson notwithstanding, there is a practical question here: Why should I assume that a celibate individual is spiritually superior to a non-celibate individual? If there is no suggestion of spiritual advantage or superiority, why should I give it any particular regard? If the point is asceticism in general (not just celibacy, but living on a metabolic minimum number of calories all derived from wild-growing plants, existing without shelter, without any belongings), then I ask what kind of God would see such individuals as being in any way superior?
Aliveness to me is about consciousness, purpose, rationality, compassion, creativity, courage–for these are what I sense as the characteristics of God’s presence within and among us. An obsessive or compulsive resolve to live with greater and greater austerity has the danger of becoming an end unto itself–the notion that severe austerity is itself a desirable state. I don’t think it is any more spiritually uplifting than its opposite–hedonistic debauchery.
People can and do make their own choices about how they live. For example, I am a vegetarian. It is my choice. It doesn’t make me spiritually superior to a meat-eater, but it is right for me, for my spiritual state. I don’t expect anyone to regard me as especially holy just because I refrain from eating flesh, and I don’t regard celibate individuals as especially holy just because they refrain from sex.



report abuse
 

Robert C

posted May 30, 2010 at 4:31 am


You shouldn’t assume that. Celibacy is an assist to help you better achieve a spiritual state somewhat akin to a hearing aid as an assist to help you hear better. Moreover it is pointless to measure one’s spiritual state against another. Awakening to the majesty of one’s God is not a competitive endeavor despite missionary ardour. Better that you ask a yogi about dietary restrictions in their holistic practice, however I will point out that the religious nature of ‘fasting’, decried by many, ignored by most as a spiritual practice, is simply calorie restriction which has now been scientifically proven to extend life by up to 40%. Calorie restriction also provides numerous secondary benefits, such as a greatly lowered risk for most degenerative conditions of aging, and improved measures of general health. Surprising that most Marian apparitions, if not all, are accompanied by Her urging the devout to fast. It is not the inteneded purpose of any personal spiritual regimen to become regarded as holy by others, per se. It is a personal act of bringing oneself closer to God. There are others, but this has seemed to have met age old, universal acceptance. As I stated the my earlier post, it is a vocational choice. You have chosen to become a vegetarian. Very few would measure the quality of your spiritual life or the measure of your spiritual worth by that choice. However, as you find that diet ‘right for you, for your spiritual state’, it is not inconcievable that a genuine priestly candidate would find celibacy ‘right for him’. You do not go shopping in an Butcher’s Emporium often as a vegetarian. For those who eschew celibacy, ordination would not be a wise venue either. No one is suggesting that you become a christian Heretic, but then again in your contrarian, singular and rather anarchistic fashion you seem intent on telling those who are comfortable in their spiritual pursuits what they should or should not think. You might as well eat meat.



report abuse
 

Heretic_for_Christ

posted May 30, 2010 at 8:41 am


Robert C,
Please quote the words I used to tell other people what they should and should not think — I looked over my last posting, and I am not seeing any such message. I said that I see no reason to hold people who choose celibacy in any special high esteem. People can indeed choose celibacy, but it IS an individual choice, not a universal virtue. As you said, it isn’t for everyone. And yet… there is an unspoken hint that icelibacy isn’t for everyone BECAUSE not everyone is pure enough and strong enough and sufficiently spiritual and sufficiently dedicated to make that choice.
In our cultural history, there has been a tendency to separate the spiritual from the physical, to laud the former and disdain the latter. And that attitude is surely the basis for the assumption that godliness = abstention (to whatever extent is possible) from physicality. I reject such an attitude as a schizoid view of life. But that is MY attitude, and it may be iconoclastic but it is hardly anarchistic.
By the way, you are clearly wrong in saying that no one is suggesting that I become a Christian. Every Christian proselytizer tells me that I should.



report abuse
 

Robert C

posted May 30, 2010 at 12:23 pm


Why, in God’s name, would they want you?



report abuse
 

Heretic_for_Christ

posted May 30, 2010 at 3:06 pm


Robert C,
What a charmingly Christian thing to say! Why indeed would any decent Christian want ANYTHING to do with the likes of me? Apparently, through their (erroneous, in my view) reading of the Great Commission, they feel obliged to try to save me from eternal hellfire, which, they assure me, is what is in store for me for the crime of having wrong (according to them) notions about God and remaining mired in sin instead of being washed clean by the blood of the lamb. So they hold their noses and tell me all about salvation — the same rant I heard during all the years I went to churches, the same rant I struggled to believe before I gave up and stopped trying to convince myself that their disgusting blasphemy was truth.
And now that you have delivered your ad hominem attack, have you nothing of content to say? Such as backing up your accusation that I tell people what to think? Such as what you consider the logical basis for an ancient religious attitude rends apart spirituality and physicality, lauding the one while denigrating the other? Or are ad hominem attacks all you can muster up?
Truthfully, Robert C, I think you can do a hell of a lot better than that.



report abuse
 

Robert C

posted May 30, 2010 at 3:47 pm


That was pretty much a serious question albeit with a tinge of sarcasm. You’ve answered thank you very much. I for one, do not find many christian prosteltizers barking at my heels or see them hounding disbelievers into becoming frothing terriers for the anti-christ. I do see a rather rabid pack of secular agnostics dancing jigs a la Bill Maher trying to convince everyone who might be foolish enough to listen that their perspective on the world must be the correct path to personal happiness. In either case its always a good show to watch. So you’ve satiated my curiousity. Now some horseradish sauce with that plate of meat?



report abuse
 

Robert C

posted May 30, 2010 at 3:48 pm


PS you can have the last word……again.



report abuse
 

pagansister

posted May 30, 2010 at 4:00 pm


In the end it really makes absolutely no difference what religion anyone is…Christians are just as dead as the atheist, or Pagan or Jew or Buddhist or anyone else. We all end up in the ground or cremated. Gone from the face of the earth…and with any luck, remembered by children or a mate or friends.
Also, in the end….a celibate priest is just as dead.



report abuse
 

Heretic_for_Christ

posted May 30, 2010 at 10:31 pm


Robert C,
Insult exchanges are boring and pointless, which is WHY having the last word is irrelevant. Why don’t we talk about the issue? I asked why I should regard the attempt to rend the spiritual from the physical, lauding the one while despising the other, as in any way an admirable approach to life. You pointed out that it was an individual choice, not a universal standard to which we should all strive–and I agree. But then you list great names of diverse cultures who endorse celibacy–which demonstrates what I said, that claiming it is an individual choice while endorsing it as a spiritually worthwhile discipline ends up proclaiming that the real individual choice is between spirituality and physicality, as if a person must be one or the other, as if harmony between the spiritual and physical is difficult or impossible. So you can say the WORDS “Celibacy is an individual choice,” but the implied MEANING is “If you are strong and committed, you can choose to seek God through spiritually uplifting celibacy; but if you are weak and tepid in your faith, you can choose to remain mired in gross carnality.” There is a clear sense of admiration for the one and not for the other.
And I still ask: Why? A dogmatic or obsessive focus on self-denial OR self-indulgence is not the way to God. It is the not the act itself that matters; it is the dogmatism or obsessiveness driving EITHER abstinence OR indulgence that represents an impediment to finding God. And I am not talking about “moderation” in all things; I am talking about rationality and mindfulness in choosing to abstain (if that is the choice) rather than dogmatism and obsession. I can respect the person who chooses rationally and mindfully to follow a celibate life; I have no particular respect for the person who lives a celibate life simply because of religious indoctrination that taught him or her to regard celibacy as a spiritual ideal state. I am asking for the rational basis of such indoctrination–not why a particular individual might choose that path, but why that path is considered spiritually superior in a general sense. Listing famous people who have chosen that path is a celebrity endorsement, not a logical argument.



report abuse
 

Henrietta22

posted May 31, 2010 at 6:59 pm


Just finished reading Nicole’s article again. These women writing to the Pope probably think of themselves as wives to these priests, and the priests may also think of them in this way, too. Although a recent partner of a priest for 20 some years, was to find out she wasn’t the only woman being duped, even though they had a child together. They, I would think would not like the title that they are mistress’s. They wrote to ask what they did so they wouldn’t be considered as such, and could marry, I would think. The Roman Catholic Church knows that they contribute to these peoples distress, but it doesn’t matter to them. They, in fact, cause many lives unhappiness in their ancient rules. No wonder so many are leaving, and finding other churches to worship the Trinity in.



report abuse
 

JLJ

posted May 31, 2010 at 9:56 pm


Hebrews 13:16
Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
Luke 6:38
Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”
Believe those words and head on over to http://www.hybridhondas.com. Click on a link or two to help a fellow brother out so he can continue helping others.
Spread the word to other brothers and sisters.



report abuse
 

Kyriakos

posted June 3, 2010 at 2:54 am


For some knowledge- Among the 23 Roman Catholic Churches 4 have mandatory celibacy. They are Latin Catholic Church, Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church and the Ethiopic Catholic Church. In the rest of the Churches most priests are married.
I think the pope should not and will not allow priests of the Latin Catholic church to marry. I from my acquaintance and knowledge of married clergymen don’t feel that things are bright among married clergy as people think.
Christ himself had taught that some will renounce everything even wife for the kingdom of God. Also he had said of people who would become eunuchs (celibates) for the kingdom of God. . In the early church celibacy was therefore known as continence.” Meaning as complete renunciation, after ordination, of conjugal life, even for those who had previously been married. So it would be good for every Christian to study Church history and to see how it was valued it the early centuries.
Celibacy is not simply remaining unmarried, but refraining from sexual life and thoughts for the love of God. And such a life is only possible with the grace of God. It is no wonder the western world and media are unable to understand the value of celibacy.
Benedict is a shrewd man and I don’t think he would cave in to western interests. During reformation in the 16th century when sexual scandals where also high the Church did not remove the vow of celibacy though there were calls from many quarters to do so. The Latin Church, instead of removing the rule strengthened it with seminary training (absent till then) which helped the Church to form priests who where overwhelmingly honest to their vow of celibacy. Now we have to see what policies Benedict would adopt to strengthen celibacy.



report abuse
 

Hollis Wolfe

posted June 15, 2010 at 3:59 pm


If only more people could read about this.



report abuse
 

Marta Buck

posted June 15, 2010 at 4:56 pm


You’ve done it once more! Great read.



report abuse
 

Avery Kramer

posted June 15, 2010 at 5:42 pm


If only more than 36 people would read this.



report abuse
 

Pingback: Eruvs: God Loves a Loophole, But Does Your Town? - Belief Beat

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the beliefnet.com terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to beliefnet.com and may be used by beliefnet.com in accordance with the agreements.



Previous Posts

More Blogs To Enjoy!
Thank you for visiting Belief Beat. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy:   Beliefnet News   Good News Happy Reading!  

posted 4:57:28pm Feb. 14, 2012 | read full post »

Fun Friday: Atheist Temple Planned for UK's Nonbelievers
Author Alain de Botton has announced plans to build an Atheist temple in the United Kingdom, presumably so nonbelievers have a place to gather and share their philosophies. Um... isn't that what Starbucks is for? Also, I can't wait to see how the architect will handle this kind of project. May

posted 2:53:42pm Jan. 27, 2012 | read full post »

Alaska Airlines: High Payers No Longer Offered Sky Prayers
Alaska Airlines, now the country's seventh-largest airline, has announced it will stop offering prayer cards with its in-flight meals. (It's just raining religion news in the great unchurched Pacific Northwest lately.) I've flown Alaska several times since moving to Seattle, but I confess that I'

posted 11:07:56am Jan. 26, 2012 | read full post »

Washington's Gay Marriage Debate: Clergy vs. Clergy
I reported for Reuters at the Washington state Capitol yesterday, covering the public hearings on a gay marriage bill -- and in between, the breaking news that the state Senate now has enough votes to pass the bill. (The House already had enough votes.) It now appears that Washington's lawmakers wi

posted 11:24:39am Jan. 24, 2012 | read full post »

What Israel's Domestic Policy & Santorum Supporters Have in Common
Hope everyone had an introspective Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, whether observed as a faith-related holiday, a nice break from the work week or something else entirely. Check out this story from Religion & Ethics Newsweekly about how mandatory sentencing for drug crimes and non-violent offens

posted 1:32:44pm Jan. 18, 2012 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.