Ten Commandments Symbols Thriving
By Megan Larkin
ARLINGTON, VA—Ten Commandments edifices—based on the historic religious edict many believe was handed down by Moses—have disappeared from most public spaces in America.
But there are dozens of spiritual stalwarts who are ignoring the 2005 Supreme Court decision barring it from public display and are filing court challenges against the ban in Florida and other Southern states. While the courts are deciding these cases, many civic leaders are defiantly placing copies of the sacred document at the entrances of schools and public buildings across America.
Symbols containing the monumental message of the Ten Commandments were once a common sight in the nation’s towns and cities. It received an extra boost in the 1950s when the renowned film director Cecil B. DeMillie promoted his movie, “The Ten Commandments,” by ordering that symbols of the famous words be sent to permanent homes across the nation. DeMille’s symbols were placed in public parks, in front of courthouses and state legislatures in dozens of towns nationwide.
Those days are gone forever, and many public displays have vanished from public view after the High Court ruling.
But that might be changing, and some legal experts are even saying that the Ten Commandments issue may wind up back in the Supreme Court.
That is because many states, including South Carolina, Texas and Kentucky are allowing the Ten Comman...Read More
After the Supreme Court banned prayer in schools in 1962, these students in Texas refused to comply.
WASHINGTON—Any legislation that allows open worship in public schools does not have a prayer of a chance of becoming law.
That has angered the Religious Right and conservatives who believe the students have a right to pray in school, but the U.S. Supreme Court did not agree.
Even though the court rulings have slammed that door on school prayer, conservative Christians are not giving up the fight—not by a long shot.
Their new strategy is in sync—ironically—with the civil libertarians who insist on the separation of church and state.<...Read More
KANSAS CITY—Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback wants to put paroled criminals on the right path by having them guided by faith-based mentors.
Brownback is going full ahead with a program that merges government resources, social service providers and spiritual mentors in an effort to keep parolees from going back to jail.
“What we are asking for is for people with heart of all faiths to step forward in this unique program,” Brownback said. “If we get this right, the cost to the state will go down dramatically, and so will the crime rate.”
The prog...Read More
By Waleed Jones
WASHINGTON—The vast majority of evangelical leaders in the United States say they are losing their optimism about the future compared to their counterparts in the Third World.
So says Luis Lugo, director of the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life in Washington who cited a poll that showed 82 percent of U.S. evangelical leaders believe their influence on American life is declining.
“There is both a huge optimism gap and a huge influence gap in the way American evangelical leaders perceive things today,” Lugo said. “At the s...Read More
CHICAGO—It’s an odd couple, but politics is finding a comfort zone at the nation’s religious schools and seminaries.
The nation's leading divinity schools are changing curriculum constantly as they move from basically being training grounds for new clergy to taking on an expanding role in dealing with political and social workings of America’s diverse religious landscape.
Divinity schools say changes were absolutely necessary because the religious diversity is challenging not only the clergy, but all Americans no matter what their walks of life. Read More
NEW ORLEANS—A growing number of scientists are becoming alarmed over the expansion of the "dead zone" in the Gulf of Mexico caused by last year's gigantic oil spill coupled with a series of storms and floods that polluted the Mississippi River.
While the extent of the dead zone is still being measured, many experts are saying it will be as large as Lake Erie, or between 8,500 and 9,400 square miles.
Eugene Turner, an oceanographer at Louisiana State University said the zone "is getting larger and larger each day and is definitely getting worse as time ...Read More