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COMMENTARY: Is anyone answering Iraqi Christians’ cries for help?

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) Iraq’s Christians are begging the world for help. Is anybody listening? Since capturing the country’s second largest city of Mosul in ear...
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State Dept. should act on Pakistan’s religious freedom violations, watchdog group says

(RNS) An independent religious freedom watchdog panel has welcomed the State Department’s annual religious freedom report and its list of the world’s worst offenders, which had laid dormant for three years. The list of “countries of particular concern” had remained unchanged since 200...
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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 offici...
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Survey: Most Americans say U.S. should shelter, not rush to deport, child migrants

WASHINGTON (RNS) Most Americans say the waves of children crossing into the United States from Central America are refugees fleeing danger at home. And they say the United States should support these children while reviewing their cases, not deport them immediately. These largely symp...
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State Department report: Religious persecution makes migrants out of millions

(RNS) And then there were nine. Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Monday (July 28) that Turkmenistan has joined the State Department’s list of worst religious freedom offenders. The State Department’s “Countries of Particular Concern” list had remained static since 2006, when...
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With Mosul’s Christians gone, Islamic State troops take over 4th-century monastery

ERBIL, Iraq (RNS) A day after most of Mosul’s Christians fled, Islamic State fighters stormed the fourth-century Mar Behnam Monastery near the city. They forced two priests, a monk, a guard and a few families taking refuge there to leave the Syriac Catholic compound. Like many Christi...
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Wikipedia’s edit wars and the 8 religious pages people can’t stop editing

(RNS) When he was a student at Brigham Young University three years ago, Anthony Willey came across a Wikipedia page on Mormons. What he read filled him with frustration. The article focused on polygamy, which seemed odd since Mormons officially outlawed the practice in 1890. “It didn...
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Special liturgy atones for outbreak of ‘The Great War’

(RNS) Half a world away from Europe, where World War I erupted 100 years ago next week (July 28), Washington National Cathedral will mark the occasion with a liturgy created especially for the anniversary. But the service is about more than remembrance. It is about atonement — atoneme...
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Political and religious leaders denounce European anti-Jewish outbursts tied to Gaza

PARIS (RNS) Amid mounting protests in Europe against the Gaza conflict, political and religious leaders in the region have sharply denounced anti-Semitism within their borders. “Anti-Semitic rhetoric and hostility against Jews, attacks on people of Jewish belief and synagogues have no...
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United Church of Bacon: May the Lard be with you

(RNS) “Hail Bacon, Full of grease, The Lard is with thee.” So go the opening lines to the United Church of Bacon’s “Hail Piggy: A Prayer for Bacon.” Despite all the puns (most UCB clergy are “friars”), the secular church has a serious mission: to fight religious discrimination aga...
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