From nuns to ‘nones,’ 10 ways religion shaped the news in 2012

The Christian Century

Dec 25, 2012

WASHINGTON (RNS) From the nuns to the “nones,” religion dominated the headlines throughout 2012. Faith was a persistent theme in the presidential race, and moral and ethical questions surrounded budget debates, mass killings and an unexpected focus on “religious freedom.”

Here are 10 ways religion made news in 2012: …

10 years later: The long shadow of sexual abuse
As U.S. Catholics marked the 10th anniversary of the clergy sex abuse scandal that erupted in Boston, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops was confronted with two landmark criminal convictions: Monsignor William Lynn, found guilty of child endangerment for shuffling abusive priests around the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, and Kansas City, Mo., Bishop Robert Finn, convicted of failing to tell police about a priest suspected of sexually exploiting children.

Even as the Penn State abuse scandal showed that abuse is not just a “church problem,” popular Franciscan priest Benedict Groeschel was forced to retract statements that seemed to defend priests who sexually abuse children and blamed some victims for “seducing” them. The chairman of the bishops’ National Review Board warned the prelates: “If there is anything that needs to be disclosed in a diocese, it needs to be disclosed now. No one can no longer claim they didn’t know.”

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