• Can Pope Francis lower the heat on church/state tensions in France?

    • May 6, 2015

    France may be traditionally dubbed the “eldest daughter of the church,” but it’s no secret that relations between parent and child have been frayed for a long time. Of late, the long-simmering tensions between church and state have been at a high boil. The French media has been full of

  • In Italy, plans for an Easter blessing yield a lawsuit for a public school

    • Mar 24, 2015

    BOLOGNA, Italy — The 16 board members of Giosuè Carducci Elementary School took their seats, chatting amicably, until the agenda turned to Easter. The board had agreed to let a Roman Catholic priest offer a blessing at their public school. Now the questions involved setting the date and whether to

    By nyt
  • New York City’s unlikely voice for religion: a secular mayor

    • Mar 20, 2015

    NEW YORK — Growing up, Mayor Bill de Blasio was the only child on his block who did not attend Mass on Sundays. “Everyone else was at church, and I wasn’t,” he recalled in an interview last week. “Some of the kids envied me.” His mother, a lapsed Catholic, had

    By nyt
  • Old tradition of secularism clashes with France’s new reality

    • Feb 8, 2015

    ROSNY-SOUS-BOIS, France — Laïcité, the concept of state secularism, is a defining principle of the French republic, right up there with the national motto of liberty, equality, and fraternity. Developed in the French Revolution, which targeted the Roman Catholic Church as much as the monarchy, laïcité governs the public life

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  • Oklahoma judge dismisses Ten Commandments lawsuit

    • Sep 19, 2014

    The privately funded Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the Oklahoma Capitol does not violate the state constitution and can stay there, an Oklahoma County judge said Friday in a ruling that attorneys who filed the lawsuit vowed to appeal to the state Supreme Court. District Judge Thomas Prince