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Faith and Family

Stay up to date on the latest news and discussions on religion, faith and family.

Cannabis plants at Compassionate Cultivation on Wednesday Jan. 17, 2018. (Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

Medical marijuana measure spurs religious freedom lawsuit in Utah

By Andrew Blake - The Washington Times

A ballot measure permitting medical marijuana within the state of Utah may go up in smoke pending a First Amendment lawsuit filed this week in Salt Lake County Court. Published August 17, 2018

Recent Stories

Relatives pray near to the dead bodies of civilians after Wednesday's deadly suicide bombing that targeted a training class in a private building in the Shiite neighborhood of Dasht-i Barcha, in western Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

Gunmen besiege Kabul compound as Afghans mourn Shite dead

- Associated Press

Gunmen besieged a compound belonging to the Afghan intelligence service in Kabul on Thursday, police said, as the city's Shiite residents held funeral services for the victims of a horrific suicide bombing the previous day that left 34 dead.

This Jan. 26, 2006, file photo shows Cinderella's Castle at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Reinhold Matay, File)

Catholic Church helped former priest accused of abuse get Disney job

Associated Press

A grand jury report into child sexual abuse in Roman Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania says church officials gave a former priest a positive reference to work at Disney World, even though they'd fielded at least one complaint about him sexually abusing a boy.

This Oct. 1, 2017, file photo shows Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington shaking hands with churchgoers at St. Mathews Cathedral after the Red Mass in Washington. Wuerl is defending himself ahead of a forthcoming grand jury report investigating child sexual abuse in six of Pennsylvania's Roman Catholic dioceses. He says the report will be critical of some of his actions as Pittsburgh's bishop. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)

Pennsylvania report identifies more than 1,000 children molested by priests

- Associated Press

More than 1,000 children -- and possible many more -- were molested by hundreds of Roman Catholic priests in six Pennsylvania dioceses, while senior church officials took steps to cover it up, according to a landmark grand jury report released Tuesday.

Vice President Mike Pence speaks during an event on the creation of a United States Space Force, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018, at the Pentagon.  Pence says the time has come to establish a new United States Space Force to ensure America's dominance in space amid heightened completion and threats from China and Russia.  (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) **FILE**

Public sick and tired of elitists' hatred toward Pence, Christians

It's actually pretty basic: We're tired of being ridiculed and stepped on. We're sick of being targeted by liberal lawyers for wanting to live out our faith. We're done with our pastors being silenced at the pulpit, of our beliefs belittled in front of our children in public schools. We're no longer willing to put up with activists judges who deny us our constitutional rights.

Nick Loeb attends the 2015 White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton Hotel on Saturday, April 25, 2015, in Washington. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP) ** FILE **

'Fake news' media undermining 'Roe v. Wade' movie, director says

An in-production movie about the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 decision legalizing abortion has attracted more attention for actors it didn't cast than for the recognizable stars it did, a development its writer-director attributes to "fake news."

Pro-choice activists gather around a bonfire to keep warm as celebratory fireworks go off in the distance from a gathering of pro-life activists, as they all wait outside Congress for lawmakers to vote on an abortion bill in Buenos Aires, Argentina, early Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018. The Senate debated a bill that would legalize elective abortion in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy, and eventually voted against it, keeping abortion limited to cases of rape or risks to a woman's health. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

Argentine Senate rejects legalizing elective abortion

- Associated Press

Argentina's Senate on Thursday rejected a bill to legalize elective abortion, a defeat for a grassroots movement that came closer than ever to achieving the decriminalization of the procedure in the homeland of Pope Francis.

The children of parents who embrace religion tend to have a lower risk of suicidal tendencies, a study has found. (Associated Press/File)

Religiosity linked to lower teen suicide rates

- The Washington Times

Scientists and researchers often point to the positive aspects of religion in creating a sense of community and providing a purpose for life. But research shows it can have a protective effect on children against suicide, even if they are not religious.

Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers runs a drill during NFL football training camp Thursday, July 26, 2018, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Aaron Rodgers says NFL should ignore Trump

- The Washington Times

Aaron Rodgers told the NFL Network's Michael Silver on Monday that players and owners should ignore President Trump's criticisms of the league, specifically his attitude toward players kneeling during the national anthem.

Fred Rogers   Associated Press photo

'Won't you be my (Republican) neighbor?'

For people of a certain age (well, my age), the mere mention of educational children's television programs immediately brings back fond memories. This includes "Sesame Street," "The Electric Company" and "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood."

President Donald Trump listens during a cabinet meeting at the White House, Thursday, June 21, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

The unintended target of tax reform: Churches now face 21% penalty

- The Washington Times

Houses of worship and nonprofit groups are crying foul as they realize that a provision in last year's tax reform law requires them to pay federal taxes on some employee benefits for the first time, a development that could cost them thousands of dollars.

Chinese calligraphy which reads "All nations belong to the Lord arising to shine" at left and "Jesus's salvation spreads to the whole world" at right are displayed below a crucifix in a house church shut down by authorities near the city of Nanyang in central China's Henan province. (Associated Press)

Beijing demands Christians infuse faith with 'Chinese characteristics' amid crackdown on religion

- Associated Press

Under President Xi Jinping, China's most powerful leader since Mao Zedong, believers are seeing their freedoms shrink dramatically even as the country undergoes a religious revival. Experts and activists say that as he consolidates his power, Xi is waging the most severe systematic suppression of Christianity in the country since religious freedom was written into the Chinese constitution in 1982.

A resident inspects a mosque damaged by an earthquake in North Lombok, Indonesia, Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2018. Thousands left homeless by the powerful quake that ruptured roads and flattened buildings on the Indonesian tourist island of Lombok sheltered Monday night in makeshift tents as authorities said rescuers hadn't yet reached all devastated areas. (AP Photo/Tatan Syuflana)

Man saved from quake-flattened mosque on Indonesia island

- Associated Press

Soldiers have pulled a man alive from the rubble of a large mosque flattened by an earthquake on the Indonesian island of Lombok, while thousands of homeless locals waited for aid Tuesday and stranded tourists camped at beaches and in the lobbies of damaged hotels.

Knights of Columbus Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The 'strong right arm' of the Catholic Church

"Faith and charity in action" is the best way to describe what the Knights of Columbus have been committed to since their inception more than 130 years ago. As the organization prepares for its annual conference this week, a look at their influence around the globe reveals that they are the Catholic Church's modern-day knights in shining armor.

In this July 25, 2018 photo, Andrew Craig Brunson, an evangelical pastor from Black Mountain, North Carolina, arrives at his house in Izmir, Turkey.   Brunson, who had been jailed in Turkey for more than one and a half years on terror and espionage charges was released and will be put under house arrest as his trial continues.  The White House is announcing that the Treasury Department is imposing sanctions on two Turkish officials over a detained American pastor who is being tried on espionage and terror-related charges.  (AP Photo/Emre Tazegul)

Free Pastor Brunson

It's sad when promising friendships turn sour. It's treacherous when carefully nurtured bonds among nations are put asunder. On paper, the United States and Turkey are NATO allies, but Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wants to trade relations with the West for ties to radical Islam. This has cast doubt on the future of the alliance. Turkey's harsh treatment of an American pastor intensifies the crisis.

Everett Piper, president of Oklahoma Wesleyan University in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. (okwu.edu)

A back-to-school message

As a university president, one of my obligations is to speak at various different church events. For 16 years, I have traveled the nation delivering talks on everything from religious liberty and academic freedom to the "snowflake rebellion" and the importance of the historical liberal arts model of higher education.

Israelis from the Druze community participate in a rally against Israel's Jewish Nation bill in Tel Aviv, Israel, Saturday, Aug. 4, 2018. Thousands of members of Israel's Druze minority and their Jewish supporters packed a central Tel Aviv square Saturday night to rally against a contentious new law that critics say sidelines Israel's non-Jewish citizens. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)

Feeling sidelined, Israel's Druze protest Jewish nation bill

- Associated Press

Tens of thousands of members of Israel's Druze minority and their Jewish supporters, some chanting "equality," packed a central Tel Aviv square Saturday night to rally against a contentious new law that critics say sidelines Israel's non-Jewish citizens.

American Christian pastor Andrew Brunson, a North Carolina native who has lived and worked in Turkey for two decades, has been held in a Turkish jail for the past 18 months on charges relating to ties with U.S.-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK. He is also accused of playing a role in the failed 2016 military coup to overthrow Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. (Associated Press/File)

Mike Pompeo presses Turkey on detained U.S. pastor after sanctions

- Associated Press

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pressed Turkey on Friday for the release of a detained American pastor whose case has led the Trump administration to hit senior Turkish officials with sanctions and badly strained ties between the NATO allies. Pompeo also said he would be seeking the release of several local employees of the U.S. diplomatic missions in Turkey.

In this Wednesday, April 25, 2018 file photo Pope Francis delivers his speech during his weekly general audience, in St.Peter's Square at the Vatican. The Vatican said Thursday Aug. 2, 2018  that Pope Francis had changed the Catechism of the Catholic Church about the death penalty, saying it can never be sanctioned because it "attacks" the inherent dignity of all humans. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini, file)

Pope Francis changes death penalty teaching, now 'inadmissible'

- Associated Press

Pope Francis has changed Catholic Church teaching about the death penalty, saying in a new policy published Thursday that it is always "inadmissible" because it "attacks" the inherent dignity of all humans.

In this July 9, 2018, file photo, demonstrators holds signs as they gather in front of the Supreme Court in Washington after President Donald Trump announced Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh as his Supreme Court nominee. Worried by the prospect of a reconfigured court, abortion-rights advocates are intensifying efforts to ensure access to abortion for women who might be affected by a new wave of bans and restrictions. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)

Abortion-rights activists brace for new wave of restrictions

- Associated Press

Abortion-rights advocates are intensifying efforts to make it easier for women to get abortions amid a new wave of state-level bans and restrictions expected to occur under a reconfigured U.S. Supreme Court.

A woman holds her hands in prayer as she watches Pope Francis on a  monitor as people await his arrival on Sept. 26, 2015, in Philadelphia. (Associated Press)

God still the co-pilot: U.S. remains the most religious among all Western nations

- The Washington Times

It is fashionable in some circles to purge the presence of God from everyday life, whether it's by banning religious images or language in public places, or media coverage that implies that faith-based anything is not inclusive. Such thinking is not new. In 1966, Time Magazine published an edition titled "Is God Dead?" -- suggesting that the faith was wavering, and the U.S. was on a path to secularization.

From The Vault

The White House is seen at dusk in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) ** FILE **

Trump hosts first Iftar dinner in observance of Ramadan

- The Washington Times

President Trump is hosting his first Iftar dinner Wednesday night at the White House to mark one of the religious observances of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, a gesture that was met with surprise and criticism among some U.S. Muslims.

First lady Melania Trump speaks on her initiatives during an event in the Rose Garden of the White House, Monday, May 7, 2018, in Washington.  The first lady gave her multipronged effort to promote the well-being of children a minimalist new motto: "BE BEST."  The first lady formally launched her long-awaited initiative after more than a year of reading to children, learning about babies born addicted to drugs and hosting a White House conversation on cyberbullying.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Melania Trump unveils 'Be Best' agenda to promote children's well-being

- The Washington Times

First lady Melania Trump rolled out an agenda Monday that focused on enhancing the well-being of children, soldiering on in her duties against one of the Washington press corps' most hostile receptions for a first lady and rabid news coverage of the president's alleged infidelity with adult film actress Stormy Daniels.

Pedestrians walk past the entrance for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Monday, Jan. 22, 2018. (AP Photo/David Goldman) ** FILE **

CDC: Teen mom birth rates hit historic low

- The Washington Times

Babies born to teenage mothers reached an historic low between 2015 and 2016, with the birth rate continuously declining for mothers between the ages of 10 and 19 years old, according to new data released on Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In this photo taken Thursday, Aug. 14, 2013, an embryologist works on a petri dish at the Create Health fertility clinic in south London. Since the first test-tube baby was born more than three decades ago, in vitro fertilization has become a sophisticated process with pricey incubators, specialized techniques and extensive screening. Now, scientists are going back to basics and testing a simpler and cheaper method intended mainly for use in developing countries. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)

More than 71,000 babies born in 2016 from IVF

- The Washington Times

Babies born using assisted reproductive technology increased in 2016, with 71,296 births counted from the efforts of 377 clinics in the U.S., according to preliminary data from the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology.