Updated: Catholics groups view decision as long overdue and affirmation of the power of grassroots organizing on behalf of creation and its inhabitants.
Religious freedom "extends way beyond mere tolerance," said Secretary of State John Kerry Oct. 14 when announcing the U.S. State Department's release of the 2014 International Religious Freedom Report.
Becoming a father was a prime motivator for Randy Berry to accept what's sure to be a controversial new role at the State Department.
Berry, 50, is the U.S. special envoy for the human rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people, the first such post created by a nation, according to the State Department.
In that trailblazing role, he said, he has an opportunity to help his two children grow up in a world more accepting than the one he was born into.
We say: The agreement with Iran is a practical, common-sense approach with the right kinds of carrots and sticks to keep all sides motivated and engaged.
Faith and Justice: The Vatican's report on the sisters and its role in repairing relations between the U.S. and Cuba overshadowed a third diplomatic milestone.
Eco Catholic: "The time for seeking global solutions is running out. We can find suitable solutions only if we act together and in agreement."
"A man's home is his castle" is a cry that echoes in American ears. While technology may be eating away at our liberties online, Americans still believe they are secure in their own homes. In some states in the South and West, dominion over one's own home is reinforced by "stand your ground" laws, which permit homeowners to use deadly force against intruders, though not without controversy.
I was preparing my latest blog post, which was to be titled, "The Democrats still have a good shot at retaining the Senate." Let me share some of the reasons I felt this was so, even though pollsters and pundits were already giving Republicans more than a 60 percent chance of taking the Senate.
Republicans need to gain six seats to retake the Senate. It really all hinges on a number of very close races across the country.
"No protected person may be punished for an offence he or she has not personally committed. Collective penalties and likewise all measures of intimidation or of terrorism are prohibited." -- Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War
And then there were nine. Secretary of State John Kerry announced Monday that Turkmenistan has joined the State Department's list of worst religious freedom offenders.
The State Department's "Countries of Particular Concern" list had remained static since 2006, when eight countries -- Burma, China, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Uzbekistan -- were designated as CPCs.