By Molly Ball, The Atlantic

For most gay Americans in the 20th century, the church was a place of pain. It cast them out and called them evil. It cleaved them from their families. It condemned their love and denied their souls. In 2004, a president was elected when religious voters surged from their pews to vote against the legal recognition of gay relationships. When it came to gay rights, religion was the enemy.

A decade later, the story is very different. Congregations across the country increasingly accept, nurture, and even marry their gay brethren. Polls show majorities of major Christian denominations — including American Catholics, despite their church’s staunch opposition — support legal gay marriage. Read the full article here.

By Frank Bruni, New York Times

BOSTON, Philadelphia, Los Angeles. The archdioceses change but the overarching story line doesn’t, and last week Milwaukee had a turn in the spotlight, with the release of roughly 6,000 pages of records detailing decades of child sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests there, a sweeping, searing encyclopedia of crime and insufficient punishment.

But the words I keep marveling at aren’t from that wretched trove. Read the full article at

Georgetown University is the subject of controversity as William Blatty, author of The Exorcist and Georgetown graduate, has filed a petition calling for the Archdiocese of Washington, DC to discipline the Jesuit university for not really being Catholic anymore. The author claims long-standing patterns of dissent against Catholic teaching make the designation no longer accurate.

Georgetown University SealFrom Washington Post, “The petition’s Web site names a litany of offenses the university has committed in contradiction to its Catholic identity, including Georgetown’s refusal to submit to the Vatican’s canonical norms for Catholic universities, hosting controversial student-led plays such as The Vagina Monologues, and inviting pro-choice speakers such as Kathleen Sebelius to speak at commencement.”

Jason Steidl, PhD student in Systematic Theology at Fordham, argues that not only is Georgetown not not Catholic — it may in fact be “the best example of what the church is supposed to be.” Steidl’s piece raises interesting questions not only for Georgetown or the Roman Catholic Church, but also for the worldwide church that includes all believers in Jesus Christ. What exactly is the church supposed to be? And what can the church learn from the controversy at Georgetown? We invite you to share your thoughts in the new At the Threshold forum.

By David Gibson, Religion News Service

JERSEY CITY, N.J. — With the Statue of Liberty as a backdrop, the “Nuns on the Bus” on Wednesday (May 29) kicked off a national tour for immigration reform aimed at giving a faith-based push to legislation that’s now hanging in the balance in Congress.

“We have got to make this an urgent message of now,” Sister Simone Campbell, head of the social justice lobby Network, which organized the tour, told a rally on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River.

“The next six to eight weeks is going to determine what we can accomplish,” Campbell said as she pointed to nearby Ellis Island, the American gateway for generations of immigrants. “The time is now for immigration reform.” Read the full article from Religion News Service.