Religion News: Catholics march for female priesthood

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Women seeking to become Catholic priests marched in Rome on Wednesday, denouncing the church's ban on female ordination as sexist and unjust.

According to wire reports, the group of women representing Catholic organizations from around the world marched across the Tiber River close to St. Peter's Square at the Vatican.

Aisha Taylor, the executive director of the Women's Ordination Conference in the United States, said the women wanted to call attention to the issue as 253 bishops met for a synod at the Vatican.

In May, the Vatican insisted that it is properly following Christian tradition by excluding women from the priesthood. It has issued a new warning that women taking part in ordinations will be excommunicated.

As priest spreads message of mercy, wallet is stolen

Authorities are looking for two people who allegedly stole a Texas preacher's wallet and went on a shopping spree while he was giving a sermon about showing mercy to others.

According to wire reports, the Rev. Rob Hamby was the guest preacher at Fort Worth Presbyterian Church on Sunday when his briefcase was stolen from the church office. Security cameras caught images of a man and woman.

About $2,000 in purchases was made on his credit and debit cards before he finished preaching, including the purchase of a $676 diamond ring. In addition to his wallet, Hamby's computer valued at $2,600 was taken.

Hamby, who works as a campus minister at Texas Christian University, said he could have understood if the thieves used his credit cards to buy essentials but not luxuries that they did not need.

Survey Says

According to a recent survey, among religious groups, about half of white evangelicals (53 percent) favor the government guaranteeing health insurance for all.

Considerably larger majorities of black Protestants (66 percent) and Catholics (67 percent) - including 78 percent of Hispanic Catholics - favor government-funded health insurance, as do 68 percent of the religiously unaffiliated.

-- Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life

Good Book?

“Churched: One Kid's Journey Toward God Despite a Holy Mess” by Matthew Paul Turner

In this first-hand account, Turner shares amusing, sometimes cringe-worthy and poignant stories about growing up in a fundamentalist household, where even well-intentioned contemporary Christian music was proclaimed to be “of the devil.”

“Churched” is a collection of stories that detail an American boy’s experiences growing up in a culture where men weren’t allowed let their hair grow to touch their ears (“an abomination!”), women wouldn’t have been caught dead in a pair of pants (unless swimming), and the pastor couldn’t preach a sermon without a healthy dose of hellfire and brimstone.

Turner grapples with the absurdity of a Sunday School Barbie burning, the passionate annual boxing match between the pastor and Satan, and the holiness of being baptized a fifth time–while growing into a young man who, amidst the chaotic mess of religion, falls in love with Jesus.

Get to Know … Benjamin Morgan Palmer

Benjamin Morgan Palmer (Jan. 25, 1818 – May 25, 1902), an orator and Presbyterian theologian, was the first moderator of the Presbyterian Church in the Confederate States of America.

As pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of New Orleans, his Thanksgiving sermon in 1860 had a great influence in leading Louisiana to join the Confederate States of America. After 1865 he was minister in the Presbyterian Church in the United States.

In its obituary of Palmer, the Christian publication The Interior reflected as follows:

“Dr. Palmer served God and his generation as a symbol of the immutability of the great essentials of our religion. His faithful witness to Jesus Christ in the word of his preaching and the example of his ministry gave him such power in New Orleans as few of the Lord's ambassadors have ever wielded in any age of the church.

“By all consent he was acknowledged for years to be the most influential man in that city, and he was so brave and outspoken that he made for righteousness not only in the private lives of men but in the civic life of the community.”

The Word

Universism: This is a progressive natural philosophy that emphasizes the personal search for truth and understanding of the universe. They have abandoned the rigid teachings of organized religion in favor of relative truth, and acceptance of uncertainty.


Religion Around the World

Religious makeup of Malta

Roman Catholic: 98 percent

- CIA Factbook

GateHouse News Service