Thursday Religion News Roundup: Hamas and the gates of hell; David Petraeus and King David; Mary reimagined

Hamas says Israel "opened the gates of hell" with its assault on Gaza. David Petraeus is compared to another David. Mary is reimagined saving her own skin.

Hamas says Israel “opened the gates of hell” with its ferocious assault on Gaza. The militant group has ratcheted up its own firing, killing three Israeli civilians in return.

Daniel Burke compares Gen. David Petraeus to another David, the one who slept with Bathsheba. The biblical hero also dispatched Bathsheba’s husband to the front lines. Question: Who in this drama will take the role of Nathan the Prophet? (See 2 Samuel 12).

Catholic bishops push sainthood for Dorothy Day, whose life and work were dedicated to championing the poor.

A pregnant woman in Ireland died after being denied an abortion.

Almost 100 faculty members at a Catholic university in San Diego have declared a loss of confidence in their president's leadership after she canceled a visiting fellowship for a British theologian who supports civil marriage for gays.

Conservative Catholic scholar George Weigel suggests one way to battle what he calls the “gay insurgency” is to get the church out of the civil marriage business. That is, its priests ought to quit signing state marriage certificates. Some liberal pastors protesting the inability of gays to marry did the same thing a few years ago.

Not enough conservative Christians are voting. That’s the conclusion Franklin Graham reached on seeing President Obama reelected. In a CNN interview, he also said he was “shocked” to find the word “cult” on the website of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

Tufts University is considering whether an evangelical Christian student group should be stripped of its official status for requiring that its leaders adhere to the faith, saying it violates school policies against religious discrimination. Haven’t we heard this elsewhere?

If Mitt Romney has one lasting political legacy, it will be that next time a Mormon runs for president, the underwear question won't be asked, says one Mormon reporter.

NPR discusses the significance of Diwali.

Irish writer Colm Toibin reimagines Mary spooked by guards, abandoning her suffering son on the cross and taking off to save her own skin in his new book, “The Testament of Mary.”

Tourists are lining up to worship in Harlem, where black churches are becoming big, inspirational attractions for white European travelers.

Six women were detained by Jerusalem police for wearing prayer shawls as more than 100 women gathered for the monthly Women of the Wall service at the Western Wall.

If you’re looking for a new password, Jesus may not be such a good idea. The name ranks among the top 25 most frequently used and most easily hacked.

Next time you reach for that hotel Bible, you may be surprised to find a “Made in China” engraving on the back. The Asian country recently became the world’s biggest publisher of Bibles.

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“The Testament of Mary” courtesy Scribner.