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Religion writers for The New York Times and the Waterbury (Conn.) Republican-American are among the top winners of the American Academy of Religion’s prizes for in-depth religion reporting.
Laurie Goodstein of the Times won the 2009 contest for journalists at news outlets with circulations of more than 100,000 or on the Web.
She was honored for articles that included the debate over same-sex marriage in California, a three-part series on Roman Catholic priests recruited from overseas to serve in the U.S., and a story on the Serenity Prayer.
Tracy Simmons of the Connecticut paper won in the category of newspapers with smaller circulations, writing about stories on topics such as Christian sexual ethics, religious environmentalism and the debate in the Episcopal Church over homosexuality.
David Gibson, writing for The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J., and The Wall Street Journal, won for opinion writing. His articles focused on Pope Benedict XVI’s vestments, the abortion debate in the 2008 presidential campaign, and defining secularism.
The awards are given annually to recognize “well-researched news writing that enhances the public understanding of religion,” said John R. Fitzmier, executive director of the academic association.
By Adelle M. Banks
Religion News Service
Copyright 2009 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.

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