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Mormon church backs deal to allow medical marijuana in Utah

By The Associated Press — October 4, 2018

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The agreement in such a conservative state underscores the nation’s changing attitude toward marijuana.

Oklahoma conservatives’ views on medical marijuana evolving

By Sean Murphy — June 23, 2018

Their support for a medical marijuana measure on Tuesday’s ballot could ensure Oklahoma joins the growing list of states that have legalized some form of pot.

In red-state Oklahoma, marijuana ballot question splits people of faith

By Bobby Ross Jr. — June 6, 2018

OKLAHOMA CITY (RNS) — Clergy on both sides of State Question 788, which would permit the distribution of medical marijuana, call it a moral issue, with proponents arguing that pot will reduce dependence on opioids and critics, including the state’s Southern Baptist convention and Catholic conference, saying it will lead to recreational use.

Rastafarian pot farm shootout sparks religious-use debate

By Yonat Shimron — August 3, 2017

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California authorities said religious organizations will have to obtain a state license when they become available next year like everyone else if they want to legally grow marijuana in California.

California’s ‘weed nuns’ on a mission to heal with cannabis

By Omar Younis — April 20, 2017

MERCED, Calif. (Reuters) The sisterhood stresses that its seven members, despite the moniker, do not belong to any order of the Catholic Church.

The down-ballot issues people of faith were watching

By Kimberly Winston — November 4, 2016

(RNS) Marijuana, gun control, the death penalty and the minimum wage are some of the issues being highlighted by religious leaders.

Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics jumps into Bible, pot debate

By Greg Horton — September 3, 2015

OKLAHOMA CITY (RNS) After two commenters posted references to the Bible in response to a story about the effects of marijuana on the brain, a bureau employee engaged them in a theological argument.

Marijuana ministries * Chicken blood * Chocolate snakes: July’s Religious Freedom Recap

By Brian Pellot — July 31, 2015

Cannabis churches are billowing out across America. Chicken huggers are suing to keep ritual bird blood off Brooklyn’s sidewalks. And a South African prophet is being prosecuted for turning congregants into snakes and snakes into chocolate.

Indiana’s Church of Cannabis files religious liberty suit

By Stephanie Wang — July 9, 2015

The lawsuit challenges state laws on possession and use of marijuana as infringing upon religious beliefs.

Cannabis Church won’t have marijuana at first service Wednesday

By Mark Alesia — June 29, 2015

Bill Levin, who calls himself the church’s minister of love, formed it partly to test Indiana’s new Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which bars the government from infringing on religious practices.

Rastafarian sues NJ police, says he was searched for pot because of his dreadlocks

By Seth Augenstein — November 12, 2014

KEANSBURG, N.J. (RNS) One of the officers allegedly told Justin Cooke that he wanted to search him for marijuana because of his dreadlocks.

Voters pass wage hikes and legal pot, divide on abortion

By Greg Toppo — November 5, 2014

(RNS) Tennessee approved a constitutional amendment that will give more power to state lawmakers to regulate and restrict abortion.

Faith leaders wrestle over growing support for marijuana

By Sarah Pulliam Bailey — February 3, 2014

(RNS) While most Christians might not be caught smoking a joint, opinions on how states should handle those who possess or sell marijuana varies among religious leaders.

What evangelicals miss in the marijuana debate

By Jonathan Merritt — January 27, 2014

The debate over marijuana legalization has reignited, but some evangelicals are ignoring a critical part of the debate.

Different Motivations Lead to Bipartisan Support to End Mandatory Sentencing

By Emily Fetsch — January 10, 2014

Twenty-five years after Congress passed the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988, which set mandatory minimum sentencing requirements for drug offenders, an unlikely alliance of Tea Party Republicans and liberal Democrats has formed to propose legislation reversing the policy.

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