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Forget the numbers. The big story is that religion has lost social influence

"Religion plays a less important role in American life." Or maybe, "Religion declines as powerful source of American public authority."

I doubt those headlines would have garnered the attention the Pew Research Center recently received with its subtitle "Christians Decline Sharply as Share of Population."

Muslim leader praises 50-year-old church document on religious dialogue

Catholic church leaders and scholars are not the only ones praising the 50-year-old church document Nostra Aetate ("In Our Time"), the Second Vatican Council's declaration on relations with non-Christian religions.

During the first part of a May 19-21 symposium on the document at The Catholic University of America, it also got high marks from a U.S. Muslim leader who said Nostra Aetate helps different faiths "recognize common roots and build a new sense of direction."

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