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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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Darren Aronofsky: I’m not religious, but the environmental messages in `Noah’ are

WASHINGTON (RNS) Director Darren Aronofsky says he is not religious, and that his Russell Crowe blockbuster movie ``Noah'' is the ``least-biblical biblical film ever made.''     But the strong environmental message of his film _ which makes Noah a hero as a God-inspired steward of...
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COMMENTARY: John XXIII and John Paul II: Two Catholic saints for the Jews

NEW YORK (RNS) It is a poignant coincidence that Popes John XXIII and John Paul II will be canonized as Catholic saints on the eve of Yom Hashoah, the international day of Holocaust remembrance observed in Israel and by Jews around the world.     These two popes' personal narrative...
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Losing my religion: Clergy who no longer believe gather online

(RNS) Catherine Dunphy came to seminary in her mid-20s, full of passion to work in the service of the Catholic Church. By the time she left, for many reasons, she had lost her faith.     ``I had this struggle where I thought, 'I don't believe this anymore,''' said Dunphy, now 40 an...
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Bible survey: Many Americans scramble their Scripture

(RNS) The Bible encourages the “repression of women," and it’s silent on such fraught topics as war or slavery. As least, that’s what about one in five U.S. adults believe. But they're wrong. The American Bible Society’s annual “State of the Bible” survey reveals “the people of...
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Protestant and Jewish leaders try to mend rift

(RNS) Prominent mainline Protestant and Jewish leaders are trying to revive an interfaith group that dissolved 18 months ago over a letter the Protestants wrote to Congress about Israel.     The Christian-Jewish Roundtable was founded about a decade ago to deepen understanding betw...
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Suit makes Georgia the last in South to face gay-marriage ban challenge

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. ATLANTA (RNS) Seven people filed a federal class-action lawsuit Tuesday (April 22) challenging Georgia's ban on same-sex marriage.     The s...
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COMMENTARY: Can there be a rational compromise on the Pledge of Allegiance?

(RNS) Yet another Pledge of Allegiance lawsuit has been filed, this time with New Jersey humanists challenging the requirement that each school day begin with recitation of the pledge describing the United States as one nation, ``under God.''     This case joins a bevy of previous...
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Army approves `humanist’ as religious preference

WASHINGTON (RNS) More than two years after first making his request, Army Maj. Ray Bradley can now be known as exactly what he is: a humanist in the U.S. military.     ``I'm able to self-identity the belief system that governs my life, and I've never been able to do that before,''...
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Church explores other scouting groups after Boy Scouts revoke charter

SEATTLE (RNS) The pastor of a United Methodist Church said her congregation is exploring other scouting affiliations now that the Boy Scouts of America revoked the congregation's charter for refusing to dismiss a gay Scout leader.     ``We are a Reconciling Congregation, open to al...
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New study by sociologist Mark Regnerus suggests religion can predict sexual behavior

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (RNS) Controversial sociologist Mark Regnerus presented new research on marriage and sex at a conference of Southern Baptists on Tuesday (April 22), suggesting that religion and sex are tracking more closely than ever before.     In his first new research since his...
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