Catholic Rally Expected to Draw Thousands

July 24, 2001

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

On July 24, 2001, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that "on Sept. 15 at least 2,000 Catholics are expected at the A.J. Palumbo Center for an enthusiastic celebration of their faith, known as a FIRE Rally...FIRE stands for Faith, Intercession, Repentance and Evangelism, which summarizes the major themes of the rallies...Talks will be given by well-known speakers."

Pope Meets with President Bush

July 24, 2001

Source: The Boston Globe

On July 24, 2001, The Boston Globe reported that "Pope John Paul II told President Bush...that the creation of embryos for scientific research was immoral" in a meeting between the two at the pope's summer residence at Castel Gandolfo, Italy. The two also discussed foreign policy, including poverty alleviation. "Bush has been making efforts to reach out to the nation's 62 million Catholics."

EMT Sues Ambulance Company for Religious Discrimination

July 24, 2001

Source: The Houston Chronicle

On July 24, 2001, The Houston Chronicle reported that "a Houston emergency medical technician has sued a private ambulance company [for religious discrimination], saying it forced him to quit his job after he quoted Scripture and discussed Jesus with patients en route to the hospital...[Andrew] Colvin wasn't proselytizing, the suit says, but was consoling patients and their family members when he spoke about Christian matters."

Canada's Government Cuts Back Long-Standing Funding of Faith-Based Groups

July 24, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On July 24, 2001, The New York Times reported that, "in Canada, Mr. Bush's [faith-based] initiative would be superfluous, because the government has financed faith-based organizations for most of the last 100 years without any worry that church and state were too close." Now the Canadian government is cutting back on funds to social services, however. The president of the housing corporation at Newtonbrook United Church siad, "I don't think it's good to have everything done by the government. But I think that maybe this has...

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Christian, Muslim Coalition Opposes Gay Rights Law in Maryland

July 23, 2001

Source: The Washington Post

On July 23, 2001, The Washington Post reported that "state officials announced that the petition drive [to repeal Maryland's new gay rights law] has netted 47,539 valid signatures, enough to delay the law's implementation and put the matter before Maryland voters...The drive owes its unexpected success to an unusual coalition of Catholics, Baltimore Muslims, social conservatives and Christian activists...Coalition leaders are largely ignoring the law's stated intent of extending legal protections to gays and focusing instead on...

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Faith-Based Initiative Needs Reworking

July 23, 2001

Source: Newsday

On July 23, 2001, Newsday published an editorial that said, "The House has just passed a constitutionally iffy bill...It's an improvement on the costly 'faith-based initiative' originally proposed by President...Bush, but it still needs a lot of work to merit passage by the Senate...The best thing the House did was shrink the new tax breaks the bill would offer to charitable givers...[However,] organizations, religious or otherwise, that violate state antidiscrimination laws shouldn't be eligible for federal funding."

Faith-Based Initiative Too Impractical

July 23, 2001

Source: The Boston Globe

On July 23, 2001, The Boston Globe published an editorial on Bush's faith-based bill, which said, "the bill ought to die in [the Senate] for sheer lack of clarity." Its guarantee to religious groups of autonomy and its prohibition of proselytizing, for example, are contradictory, the piece said. "The United States has thrived by keeping church and state at arm's length."

Boston Church Property Increases in Value

July 22, 2001

Source: The Boston Globe

On July 22, 2001, The Boston Globe reported on "the potential financial bonanza for churches, synagogues and other religious organizations sitting on increasingly valuable parcels of land...In the city itself, the value of real estate owned by religious denominations has doubled over the last five years...At the same time, many religious denominations...are scrambling for money."

Senate Should Vote Against Faith-Based Bill

July 22, 2001

Source: The Harford Courant

On July 22, 2001, The Harford Courant published an editorial on the faith-based initiative recently passed in the House, which said, "the House inadvisably strengthened what Thomas Paine called 'the adulterous connection of church and state.'...It will now be up to the Senate to say no to a well-meaning but constitutionally offensive."

Neighbors Oppose Plan for New Church

July 21, 2001

Source: The San Diego Union-Tribune

On July 21, 2001, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that "some future neighbors of the North Coast Church campus [an evangelical church] say the 365,000-square-foot complex -- as big as three typical Wal-Mart stores -- will destroy the area's country character with bright lights, big buildings and an increase in traffic. And, a neighborhood group says the City Council could face a lawsuit if it approves the project."

Faith-Based Bill Passes in House

July 20, 2001

Source: The Baltimore Sun

On July 20, 2001, The Baltimore Sun reported that "the House voted mostly along party approve a bill to allow more federal money to go to religious charities that deliver social services...The leaders secured the votes after pledging that changes would be made to the bill after it goes to the Senate to bar religious groups that receive federal money from discriminating on other grounds, particularly against homosexuals...The bill faces an uncertain the Democratic-led Senate."

Muslim Guard Sues Prison for Discrimination

July 19, 2001

Source: The Plain Dealer

On July 19, 2001, The Plain Dealer reported that "a guard at a Grafton [Ohio] prison is suing the state, claiming that his bosses won't let him pray behind bars. Dawoud Kareem Muhammad...filed a First Amendment claim in U.S. District Court in Cleveland...His attorney...said the prison discriminated against Muhammad because employees can wear crucifixes under their uniforms," but he is not allowed to wear a skullcap under his uniform hat.

$2.5 Million Awarded to Man Fired for Not Working on Sabbath

July 18, 2001

Source: The Denver Post

On July 18, 2001, The Denver Post reported that "a Denver federal jury...awarded $2.25 million to a former Pueblo air traffic controller who was fired for refusing to work on the Sabbath. The jury concluded that employers may not force religious worshipers to work on the Sabbath if it is their 'sincerely held religious belief.'...Reed, who said he believes 'in the word of God' rather than a formal religion, said his belief in resting on the Sabbath comes from the book of Genesis."

Outdoor Religious Services Bring Together People of Different Faiths

July 17, 2001

Source: Newsday

On July 17, 2001, Newsday reported that the "Montauk Community Presbyterian Church, which is hosting a series of sunrise and sunset worship services this month in the Montauk [New York] area...on local beaches and in parks," which bring together members of different churches and cultures. The hosts include Protestant ministers, a Catholic priest and a rabbi... Montauk's religious leaders are trying to break down the walls between churches."

Churches Help to Spread Utility Bill Discounts to Poor

July 17, 2001

Source: Los Angeles Times

On July 17, 2001, the Los Angeles Times reported that "Southern California Edison has enlisted the help of an unlikely ally--churches--to sign up thousands of low-income customers for hefty discounts on rising utility bills...Pastors, priests and church volunteers have become Edison's most effective tool in telling the poor about a state-mandated program that offers 20% off electric bills."