Update on the latest religion news

GAY MARRIAGE-KENTUCKY

Kentucky clerk’s lawyer says solution may have been found

MOREHEAD, Ky. (AP) — A lawyer for the Kentucky clerk who refuses to issue marriage licenses that she says violate her faith believes the ones now being issued without her name or authority could be a solution to the matter.

After a lesbian couple received a marriage license Monday in the Rowan County courthouse, lawyer Harry Mihet (mee-HEHT’) told reporters that it didn’t violate Kim Davis’s conscience. He added, “If it’s satisfactory to the plaintiffs and the court, then I think we will have found that win-win solution that we have been asking for all along.”

Davis was jailed for five days after a judge found her in contempt for refusing his order to issue licenses that she says violate God’s definition of marriage.

She returned to work Monday, saying she still won’t issue marriage licenses. But Davis said she won’t prevent her deputies from issuing licenses without her name that have the words “pursuant to federal court order” typed on them.

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear said Monday that such licenses will be “recognized as valid.”

Sound:

283-w-37-(Steve Coleman, AP religion editor, with Harry Mihet, attorney for Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis)–A lawyer for the Kentucky clerk who refuses to issue marriage licenses that violate her faith says the ones now being issued without her name or authority could be a solution to the matter. AP Religion Editor Steve Coleman reports. (14 Sep 2015)

<

271-a-08-(Carmen Wampler-Collins, who received a license to marry her same-sex partner, in AP interview)-“I’ll take it (laughter fades)”-Carmen Wampler-Collins, who received a license to marry her same-sex partner, says the protesters and hecklers were a nuisance. (14 Sep 2015)

<

268-a-07-(Harry Mihet (mee-HEHT’), attorney for Kim Davis, at news conference)-“loves very much”-Harry Mihet, the attorney for Kim Davis, says the Rowan County clerk is not authorizing or interfering with her deputy issuing altered marriage licenses. (14 Sep 2015)

<

269-a-12-(Elizabeth Johnston, Kim Davis supporter from Ohio, in AP interview)-“on God’s word”-Elizabeth Johnston, a Kim Davis supporter from Ohio, says opponents of gay marriage consider the Rowan County clerk a civil rights hero. (14 Sep 2015)

<

267-a-11-(Harry Mihet (mee-HEHT’), attorney for Kim Davis, at news conference)-“for all along”-Harry Mihet, the attorney for Kim Davis, says the marriage licenses now being issued may be a sufficient religious accommodation. (14 Sep 2015)

<

270-r-11-(Sound of heckler, shouting at two women receiving a marriage license)–Sound of an unidentified heckler shouting at two women receiving a marriage license. (14 Sep 2015)

<

272-r-10-(Gay rights advocates, chanting “Love has won” outside the Rowan County courthouse)–Sound of gay rights advocates chanting “Love has won” outside the Rowan County courthouse. (14 Sep 2015)

<

176-a-14-(Kim Davis, Rowan (ROW’-ehn) County Clerk, reading statement before returning to work)-“reasonable accomodations available”-Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis says she’s being forced to make an unreasonable choice. ((first syllable of Rowan rhymes with ‘how’)) (14 Sep 2015)

<

174-a-12-(Kim Davis, Rowan (ROW’-ehn) County Clerk, reading statement before returning to work)-“federal court order”-Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis she will not authorize her deputies to issue any marriage licenses, but she won’t stop them either. ((first syllable of Rowan rhymes with ‘how’)) (14 Sep 2015)

<

175-a-14-(Kim Davis, Rowan (ROW’-ehn) County Clerk, reading statement before returning to work)-“held religious convictions”-Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis says the Kentucky legislature Governor Steve Beshear should take action so that she does not have to be the one to authorize marriage licenses for same-sex couples. ((first syllable of Rowan rhymes with ‘how’)) (14 Sep 2015)

<

173-a-13-(Kim Davis, Rowan (ROW’-ehn) County Clerk, reading statement before returning to work)-“authorized by me”-Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis says she is trying to reconcile her conscience with court orders for her to issue marrigage licenses to same-sex couples. ((first syllable of Rowan rhymes with ‘how’)) (14 Sep 2015)

<

DEM 2016-SANDERS

Sanders courts Christian conservative students

LYNCHBURG, Va. (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has told students at the university founded by the late Rev. Jerry Falwell that they may disagree about gay marriage and abortion but should agree on social justice issues.

Addressing thousands of students at Liberty University, Sanders quoted Jesus’ admonition to “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

He also quoted the Old Testament to denounce the vast gulf between America’s rich and poor. Sanders noted that the Jewish prophet Amos wrote, “Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream.”

Sanders said that while he’s not a Catholic, he agrees with Pope Francis’ lament that money has become an idol while many people remain poor and hungry.

The Vermont senator received scattered applause at the conservative Christian school, but many students sat with their arms folded, declining to clap.

Sound:

296-w-36-(Steve Coleman, AP religion editor, with Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Democratic presidential candidate)–Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has told students at the university founded by the late Rev. Jerry Falwell that they may disagree about gay marriage and abortion but should agree on social justice issues. AP Religion Editor Steve Coleman reports. (14 Sep 2015)

<

199-a-16-(Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Democratic presidential candidate, in appearance at Liberty University)-“have to do (cheers fade)”-Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says he understands why abortion foes believe the practice is immoral, but he doesn’t want the government to criminalize it. (14 Sep 2015)

<

197-a-15-(Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Democratic presidential candidate, in appearance at Liberty University)-“injustice is rampant”-Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says it’s not moral or just when a tiny fraction of Americans are reaping a windfall while tens of millions are struggling. (14 Sep 2015)

<

196-a-17-(Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Democratic presidential candidate, in appearance at Liberty University)-“a civil discourse”-Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says he knows many at Liberty University disagree with him — but it’s important to search for common ground. (14 Sep 2015)

<

198-a-15-(Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Democratic presidential candidate, in appearance at Liberty University)-“to bed hungry”-Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says students like those at Liberty University should agree with him that America must do more for the poor. (14 Sep 2015)

<

200-a-17-(Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Democratic presidential candidate, in appearance at Liberty University)-“on every issue (applause fades)”-Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says politicians spend all too much time speaking only to those who ardently agree with them. ((Note length)) (14 Sep 2015)

<

LAW ENFORCEMENT RALLY

Prayer rally for law enforcement held at Louisiana Capitol

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Several hundred law enforcement officers and their supporters have taken part in a service on the Louisiana Capitol steps to pray and remember those killed in the line of duty.

Gov. Bobby Jindal called for Monday’s statewide day of prayer for law enforcement in response to the nine on-duty deaths of police officers in Louisiana this year.

The Advocate reports that the Republican governor, who is running for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016, told those who attended the rally: “We cannot thank our officers and their families enough.”

Among the attendees was Jackie LaValley, whose 29-year-old son Thomas, a Shreveport police officer, was shot and killed last month while on duty. She clutched a framed photo of her son in uniform. Of the prayer rally, LaValley said: “This needs to happen more.”

CATHOLIC HOSPITAL-STERILIZATION

ACLU protests hospital’s decision to deny sterilization

GRAND BLANC, Mich. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union is objecting to a Michigan hospital’s refusal to let a doctor to perform sterilization surgery on a woman who has brain tumors.

The ACLU says Jessica Mann wants a tubal ligation to prevent future pregnancies when she gives birth through cesarean section on Oct. 24. The ACLU says Genesys hospital in Grand Blanc won’t allow it.

Johnny Smith Jr., a spokesman for the hospital’s parent, Ascension, says he can’t comment on a patient. But he says the company follows the “ethical and religious directives” of the Catholic church.

Mann’s doctor only has hospital privileges at Genesys. The ACLU says it’s risky for the 33-year-old to be pregnant with tumors.

In a letter last week to Genesys, the ACLU suggests it’s violating state law by blocking appropriate care.

PASTOR-SPACE CAPSULE

‘Space’ oddity: Pastor living in capsule for fundraiser

WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. (AP) — A Pittsburgh-area pastor is engaging in a space oddity: He’s spending a week in a replica of the Mercury space capsule and communicating only by Internet to raise money for a community youth program.

KDKA-TV reports that the Rev. Bill Galus entered the capsule immediately after Sunday’s service at Walnut Grove Assembly of God in West Mifflin.

The capsule nicknamed “Glory 7” is meant to mimic the one used by the United States in the first manned space mission in the 1960s. The capsule is a little more comfortable than the real one, though: It has electricity, a portable toilet, and a small refrigerator with bottled water.

But the pastor will be sleeping in a makeshift bed and eating freeze-dried meals like a real astronaut.

POPE-PERFORMERS

Jennifer Hudson, Aretha Franklin among stars at papal events

NEW YORK (AP) — The stars will come out when Pope Francis visits the U.S. next week.

Celebrities including Jennifer Hudson, Gloria Estefan, Aretha Franklin and Andrea Bocelli will be performing at papal events in New York City and Philadelphia. Pope Francis is visiting those cities, as well as Washington, during his first trip to the United States from Sept. 22 to Sept. 27.

Officials with the Archdiocese of New York announced performers for an afternoon concert at Madison Square Garden on Sept. 25, before Pope Francis celebrates Mass there in the evening. Along with Hudson and Estefan, performers scheduled to appear include Harry Connick, Jr., Norm Lewis, and Martin Sheen.

In Philadelphia, organizers announced Monday that singer Aretha Franklin would be among those performing for him during an outdoor festival on the next-to-last night of his U.S. tour. They also announced that actor Mark Wahlberg will host and comedian Jim Gaffigan will perform.

SCALPING POPE TICKETS

Cardinal, New York officials condemn selling of pope tickets

NEW YORK (AP) — New York officials have joined Cardinal Timothy Dolan in condemning the scalping of tickets to see Pope Francis’ motorcade in New York City.

About 80,000 tickets were dispersed through a city-sponsored lottery system for the pope’s Sept. 25 procession through Central Park.

The tickets were free, but were soon being sold on secondary markets such as eBay and Craigslist for thousands of dollars. Sen. Chuck Schumer has commended eBay’s decision to ban the sale of pope event tickets.

Dolan, the archbishop of New York, says the tickets were free so that as many people as possible would be able to participate in the pope’s visit, including those with “modest means.” State Sen. Daniel Squadron says the ticket scalping is in direct conflict with the spiritual leader’s message.

Sound:

300-a-05-(New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (dih BLAH’-zee-oh), at news conference)-“pope stands for”-New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says Pope Francis would not want people to re-sell free tickets to see him. (14 Sep 2015)

<

298-a-14-(New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (dih BLAH’-zee-oh), at news conference)-“such a ticket”-New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says people should not be scalping free tickets for the pope. ((part of cut used in wrap)) (14 Sep 2015)

<

297-w-34-(Julie Walker, AP correspondent, with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (dih BLAH’-zee-oh))–Some of the free tickets to see Pope Francis, such as when he rides through Central Park in New York, are popping up for sale by scalpers on the internet and the city is not happy about it. AP correspondent Julie Walker reports. (14 Sep 2015)

<

299-a-06-(New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (dih BLAH’-zee-oh), at news conference)-“type of activity”-New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says some of the online sites where people would generally go to scalp tickets are working with the city to stop the practice for the pope’s visit. (14 Sep 2015)

<

CUBA-SPIRITUALITY

Spirituality varied in Cuba prior to pope’s visit

HAVANA (AP) — Cuba’s religious syncretism has been on display in the weeks leading up the Pope Francis’ arrival on the island on Saturday, with processions that brought out crowds to honor two locally popular Catholic saints on their feast days: the Virgin of Regla and the Virgin of Charity.

While both versions of the Virgin Mary are recognized by the Catholic Church, they are also adored by practitioners of Afro-Cuba beliefs, who associate them with certain “orishas,” or deities. Our Lady of Regla is associated with Yemaya, the Yoruba goddess of the sea, and Our Lady of Charity is linked with the deity Ochun.

Thus, spirituality is expressed in many ways in Cuba, where different creeds and religious practices are widely accepted, even when they are mixed together.

Along with Catholics and believers in Afro-Cuban faiths, there are Jews, Muslims, Protestants and Buddhists in the country that for decades had been an atheist state. The ruling Communist Party in 1991 began allowing religious believers to become members, and in 1992 the Constitution was amended to remove the reference to atheism.

VATICAN-REFUGEES

Pope warns Europe refugee crisis the ‘tip of the iceberg’

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has warned that Europe’s refugee crisis is just the “tip of the iceberg,” fueled by an “unjust” global economic system forcing hundreds of thousands of people to flee war and poverty in search of better lives.

In an interview with a Portuguese Catholic radio station, Francis recalled that the Bible requires that strangers be welcomed, though he acknowledged that security precautions must be taken.

He said: “It’s true that 400 kilometers (250 miles) from Sicily there is an exceedingly cruel terrorist guerrilla group, and it’s true there’s the danger of infiltration.”

Francis repeated his call for parishes to each welcome a migrant family and said two families have been identified to move into Vatican housing. He said they can stay “as long as the Lord wants.”