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September 15, 2017

MEDELLIN, Colombia — Pope Francis recalled the murderous past of this Colombian city once synonymous with drug cartel violence during a rain-soaked visit Saturday, lamenting the many lives lost to addiction and praying for dealers and traffickers to change their ways.

In a meeting in Medellin…


Efforts to mend China-Vatican rift stall over bishops

September 08, 2017

BEIJING — The Vatican’s efforts to heal a decades-long rift with China appear to have stalled, with each side still unwilling to accept controversial bishops appointed by the other.

In recent months, Beijing has appeared to take a harder line toward believers, and has ordered the…


Hajj en­tan­gled in web of Saudi pol­i­tics

September 01, 2017

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates  – More than 1.7 million Muslims from across the world have arrived in Saudi Arabia for the start of the annual hajj pilgrimage this week. Once in Mecca – the site of Islam’s holiest place of worship— they will be reminded that the…


Group works to restore historic black church

August 25, 2017

ATHENS, Ohio — Though there’s mold growing on the walls, peeling paint on the ceiling and cobwebs dusting the pews, the Mount Zion Baptist Church has what some call a “special feel.”

It’s inexplicable, but it might have something to do with the beautiful stained glass…