Eastern and Western Churches Seek to Set Common Date for Easter Celebrations

April 13, 2001

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On April 13, 2001, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that "for the first time since 1990, all Christians are celebrating the same day as Good Friday and the same day as Easter. Easter celebrations of Eastern Orthodox Christians and Western Christians are usually separated by weeks...Since the 1960s, the Vatican and Eastern Orthodox Patriarchs have discussed converging their Easter dating systems."

Recent Comic Strip about Easter Offends Many

April 12, 2001

Source: The Arizona Republic

on April 12, 2001, The Arizona Republic reported that Jewish and Christian leaders are objecting to a B.C. comic strip run on Easter, which carries a religious theme that they see as offensive to Jews. The Los Angeles-based Jewish Defense League said the comic "fuels the ideals that have led to our persecution and murder for thousands of years."

Immigrants in Georgia Have Own Ways of Celebrating Easter

April 12, 2001

Source: The Atlanta Journal and Constitution

On April 12, 2001, The Atlanta Journal and Constitution compared the way Americans celebrate Easter to the way Christians from other parts of the world, including Cambodian, Indonesian, Liberian and Hispanic congregations, celebrate it. The article cited many communities in Georgia where immigrants are demonstrating different ways of celebrating Easter. "One particularly American difference from other Christian cultures is Easter's secondary importance to Christmas. In most cultures, Easter is the more important...

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Religion-Based Program Tries to Rehabilitate Prisoners

April 12, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On April 12, 2001, The New York Times reported on the InnerChange Freedom Initiative, a religion-based program in a medium-security prison near Des Moines "that would seem likely to interest the Bush administration...It works under contract with the state to rehabilitate felons." The article reported that results from the program "are still emerging." Whether the program would be excluded from government funding under Bush's faith-based initiative because acceptance of a religious message is central to its work "remains to be seen...

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Mixed-Faith Couples Face Challenges

April 8, 2001

Source: The Denver Post

On April 8, 2001, The Denver Post reported on the challenges that face couples of mixed religious faiths. "The bumping together of religion and tradition isn't as simple for couples of different faiths deciding how to raise their children, practice their beliefs and cope with their families...Christian ministers are mixed on whether they will co-officiate at [wedding] ceremonies...'There are [only] a couple hundred' rabbis across the country who will co-officiate with a minister, said one Denver rabbi."

Jewish Leaders Desire Overhaul of Education about Christianity

April 8, 2001

Source: The Boston Globe

On April 8, 2001, The Boston Globe reported that "over the last several decades, the Catholic Church has made extraordinary changes in the way it talks about Jews and Judaism...[It] now goes out of its way to" present Jews in a favorable light. "At the same time, Jewish educators have not significantly changed" the negative way they portray Christians. "Some prominent Jewish leaders are beginning to question whether they, like their Catholic counterparts, need to overhaul the way they teach their children." Their desire for...

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Catholic School in Queens Holds Appeal for Hindus, Sikhs, and Muslims

April 8, 2001

Source: New York Daily News

On April 8, 2001, the New York Daily News reported on St. Benedict Joseph Labre School in Richmond Hill, in Queens. It is a Catholic school, but "about 20% of the students are Sikhs, 20% are Hindus and 5% are Muslim." Many of the Hindu and Sikh mothers "said they like the structure, morality and emphasis on education at St. Benedict Joseph Labre." Administrators and students report that everyone at the school respects differences in religion or racial background.

New Korean Church Built in Buffalo Diocese

April 8, 2001

Source: The Buffalo News

On April 8, 2001, The Buffalo News reported on the newly built St. Andrew Kim Catholic Church, in the Town of Tonawanda. "After holding services in borrowed sites for 26 years, Korean Catholics in the Buffalo Diocese finally have a church to call their own...Currently, all Masses are celebrated in the Korean language."

Boston-Area Minister Promotes Faith-Based Initiative as Help to Fellow Blacks

April 7, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On April 7, 2001, The New York Times reported on Rev. Eugene F. Rivers of Dorchester, Massachusetts, who "is getting national attention as he lauds the possibility that a conservative Republican administration may provide a vital tool for helping fellow blacks and criticizes those religious conservatives who appear to be resisting" Bush's faith-based initiative. Mr. Rivers said, "The faith-based initiative is really a new opportunity for communities serving the poor to develop new leadership and policy issues."

ACLU Protests Public Schools' Field Trip to a Church

April 7, 2001

Source: The Times-Picayune

On April 7, 2001, The New Orleans Times-Picayune reported that "the American Civil Liberties Union has formally protested a New Orleans public school field trip to a church where students were urged to give their lives to Jesus Christ...Teachers at six or more middle and high schools bused almost 1,000 students...[to a church] to see a play about classroom violence, the fragility of life and the importance of faith in Jesus Christ as the only key to salvation."

Interfaith Organizations Expand their Missions

April 7, 2001

Source: New York Daily News

On April 7, 2001, the New York Daily News reported on two interfaith groups: the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding and the National Conference for Community and Justice. "The growth in [other] organizations working specifically on togetherness among faiths frees their groups to expand their missions. The National Conference and the Tanenbaum Center have moved on to such matters as diversity in the workplace, religion's role in solving conflicts and development of leaders in institutions with histories of...

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House Approves Controversial School-Prayer Bill

April 6, 2001

Source: The Tampa Tribune

On April 6, 2001, The Tampa Tribune reported that "a House panel approved a school-prayer bill...after a raw debate over whether it would encourage spirituality or engender intolerance among students. The bill would permit prayer at graduations and student gatherings at secondary schools if both school boards and students agree." The bill remains controversial among legislators, parents, educators, and community members.

Plaintiff Charges City with Ulterior Motive in Sale of Property

April 5, 2001

Source: The San Diego Union-Tribune

On April 5, 2001, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported on a hearing in Pasadena before a federal appeals court. It was "the latest legal skirmish in a nearly 12-year-old controversy over the" Mount Soledad cross. Atheist Philip Paulson claimed San Diego City "violated constitutional law when it sold the land to the Mount Soledad Memorial Association, a nonprofit veterans group that built the cross and maintained it for nearly 50 years." Before the veterans group bought the land, it was public property and the presence of...

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Debate over Church's Plans to Expand

April 3, 2001

Source: Los Angeles Times

On April 3, 2001, the Los Angeles Times reported on the debate over the proposal of the nondenominational Self-Realization Fellowship to expand its headquarters in Mt. Washington, California. "Supporters say that the church is a good neighbor and that its expansion would not harm the community's character. Opponents say the expansion project would be too big for a hilltop area of only 8,000 residents."

Chapel Rejects Interfaith Baccalaureate

April 3, 2001

Source: The Washington Post

On April 3, 2001, The Washington Post reported that "organizers of a religious service for graduating high school seniors in Prince William County were turned away from a Christian events chapel because they wanted to include a rabbi and a Muslim layperson in the service." The director of the chapel said that allowing speakers who were not from the orthodox Catholic tradition would violate the the chapel's charter.