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8-year-old student not feminine enough, school says

Eds: A version of this story originally appeared in USA Today. It is available for use by RNS subscribers. Please use the USA Today byline. (RNS) The family of a little girl in western Virginia has removed her from her school after administrators said she did not appear feminine enough.     Sunnie Kahle, 8, likes autographed baseballs and hunting knives alon...
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More than 100 religious, immigration activists arrested at White House

WASHINGTON (RNS) More than 100 religious leaders and activists were arrested Thursday (July 31) in a White House protest aimed at halting deportations and aiding immigrants living in the U.S. illegally. The direct action sponsored by Church World Service and Casa de Maryland, an i...
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Mommy, minister and unmarried: Single mothers in the pulpit

(RNS) When Philadelphia’s St. Paul Baptist Church hired the Rev. Leslie Callahan as its first female pastor, in 2009, she was nearing her 40th birthday and the tick-tock of her biological clock was getting hard to ignore. She delighted in her ministry but also wanted a husband and...
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Satanists’ challenge to Hobby Lobby ruling may face legal hurdles

(RNS) A group of Satanists is challenging the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision by providing a letter women can give to doctors to avoid being handed state-mandated “informed consent” literature before seeking an abortion. But constitutional lawyers say the effort may be a toot...
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Krista Tippett’s ‘On Being’ honored by White House for engaging listeners on what it means to be human

(RNS) On Sept. 11, 2001, Krista Tippett was in Washington on her way to meet with potential funders to create a radio show focused on faith. As the day unfolded with attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the meeting was canceled. “Unfortunately, the case for religion...
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Meriam Ibrahim leaves Italy for new life in New Hampshire

ROME (RNS) Meriam Ibrahim, the Sudanese woman sentenced to death for refusing to renounce her Christian faith and then spared after an international campaign, left Italy on Thursday (July 31) on a flight for the U.S., where she plans to build a new life. Ibrahim, who met Pope Fran...
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Faith leaders testify in support of EPA’s Clean Power Plan

WASHINGTON (RNS) More than two dozen faith leaders rallied at public hearings hosted by the Environmental Protection Agency to testify in support of the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan to cut greenhouse gases. The plan was proposed June 2 and is designed to cut carbon poll...
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Poll: More Italians support abortion rights than cosmetic surgery

ROME (RNS) As the Catholic Church wrestles with changing community attitudes on key social issues, a new Italian survey finds more support for abortion, gay rights and euthanasia than for cosmetic surgery. According to the survey published in the daily La Stampa this week, 61 perc...
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COMMENTARY: China’s grim religious freedom problem

(RNS) While last month marked the 25th anniversary of China’s silencing freedom in Tiananmen Square, this month China has been cementing this grim legacy — particularly regarding religious freedom. From repressing Muslims to bulldozing churches and tearing down crosses, Chinese of...
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SNAP’s clergy abuse victims mark 25 years and eye new targets

(RNS) When victims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests first organized into a small band of volunteer activists in the late 1980s, reports of clergy molesting children were still new and relatively few. Most were minimized as anomalies or dismissed altogether — much the way the vict...
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COMMENTARY: The headlong retreat into childhood partisanship

(RNS) When I was a child, I lived in a black-and-white world of all-this or all-that. Humankind meant my family. The world meant my neighborhood. Religion meant my church. Politics meant my father’s beliefs. Oh, I was aware that more was out there, but it had little claim on my...
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