As Holocaust Museum turns 20, the ranks of survivors dwindle

WASHINGTON (RNS) Adult survivors of the Holocaust are largely gone, and those who survived as children won’t be around much longer. That’s why when the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum marks its 20th anniversary Monday, museum officials say it’s likely to be one the last large gatherings of survivors.

Nicholas Coppola delivers 18,603 signatures through Faithful America, asking to be active in his Roman Catholic parish. Photo courtesy GLAAD

Catholic bishop returns petitions to ousted gay man

NEW YORK (RNS) The story of a gay Catholic man who was relieved of all duties at his Long Island parish just got more interesting: His bishop returned a petition with 18,000 signatures with a one-line cover letter: “FROM YOUR FAITHFUL ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP.”


Buddhist Leader Her Holiness Shinso Ito Breaks New Ground in Thailand

Head Priest of Shinnyo-en Leads First Mahayana Buddhist Ceremony in Theravada Temple in Bangkok
 The Acting Supreme Patriarch of Thailand and Thai Theravada Buddhists Join Japanese Mahayana Buddhists in Prayer for Peace
 Photo Caption: During the ceremony, Her Holiness Shinso Ito presented the Most Venerable Somdet Phra Maha Ratchamangkhlachan with a statue of Shakyamuni Buddha sculpted by Shinnyo-en’s founder, Master Shinjo Ito. The reclining Buddha or nirvana statue serves as Shinnyo-en’s principal figure of meditation and contemplation.  

April 25, 2013, Bangkok, Thailand — Today Her Holiness Shinso Ito, Head Priest of Shinnyo-en, a Japanese Buddhist denomination, became the first female priest to lead a Mahayana prayer ceremony at Wat Paknam, a well-known Theravada Buddhist temple. Her Holiness Shinso Ito is one of the few women to be granted the title of diasojo, the highest priestly rank in Japanese Buddhism. She is also the first woman ever to officiate at a Buddhist ceremony at the Daigoji Monastery in the 1,100 year history of the temple in Japan.

Marty Scrima, (left) and Jim Wedick, members of the Holy Infant Catholic Church evangelization team, work the New Ballwin Estates subdivision in Ellisville on Saturday, April 20, 2013, going door to door, re-welcoming registered members to restart an active membership at the church and taking suggestions on how to make worship better. Photo by Christian Gooden / St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Catholics try their hand at old-fashioned evangelism

SHREWSBURY, Mo. (RNS) About 125 Catholics packed a basement conference room — most of them lay people, many of them older. They gathered to learn how to spread the faith, a concept that is both fundamental to Christianity and nearly foreign to modern Roman Catholics.

Quote of the Day: Writer Chaya Kurtz

“I guess at some point, I had to grow up. … Thirteen years later, I am proud to say that not only do I not fart in public, but I also don’t blurt out, “Who farted?!” when someone else does. If that ain’t progress, I’m not sure what is.” — Writer Chaya Kurtz, writing on xojane.com about how she had to give up farting in public when she became a Hasidic Jew.

Trinity Church NYC

Serving God and Mammon at Trinity Church

The Episcopal church known appropriately in all senses as Trinity Wall Street turns out to be worth a cool couple of billion dollars, according to its accounting of its assets in response to a lawsuit.