Latest Religion News

Muslim pilgrims converge at Mount Arafat for daylong worship as Hajj reaches its peak

Jun. 15, 2024 05:36 AM EDT

MOUNT ARAFAT, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Following the footsteps of prophets beneath a burning sun, Muslims from around the world congregated Saturday at a sacred hill in Saudi Arabia for intense, daylong worship and reflection. The ritual at Mount Arafat, known as the hill of mercy, is...

A usually joyous Muslim holiday reminds families in Gaza of war's punishing toll

Jun. 15, 2024 00:47 AM EDT

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip (AP) — Last summer, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip celebrated the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha the way it's supposed to be: with large family feasts, meat shared with those less fortunate, and new clothes and gifts for children. But this year, after eight...

Biden, Meloni meet on sidelines of G7 summit but one notable matter wasn't on the table: abortion

Jun. 14, 2024 18:35 PM EDT

BORGO EGNAZIA, Italy (AP) — President Joe Biden and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni had a lot to talk about Friday when they met on the sidelines of the Group of Seven summit, but one notable matter wasn't on the table: abortion, an issue that emerged as an unexpected friction point among...

Pope Francis meets more than 100 comedians at the Vatican: 'You also make God smile'

Jun. 14, 2024 18:12 PM EDT

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Before flying to Italy's southern Puglia region to meet world leaders at the Group of Seven summit, Pope Francis hosted a very different audience at the Vatican on Friday celebrating the importance of humor. The pontiff welcomed more than 100 comedians from 15...

Muslims start the Hajj against the backdrop of the devastating Israel-Hamas war

Jun. 14, 2024 14:44 PM EDT

MINA, Saudi Arabia (AP) — In sweltering temperatures, Muslim pilgrims in the Saudi city of Mecca converged on a vast desert tent camp Friday, officially starting the annual Hajj pilgrimage. Earlier, they circled the cube-shaped Kaaba in the Grand Mosque, Islam’s holiest site. ...

Top US bishop worries Catholic border services for migrants might be imperiled by government action

Jun. 14, 2024 14:38 PM EDT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Government officials would be infringing on religious freedom if they were to restrict the Catholic Church’s work serving migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border, says a top U.S. bishop. Archbishop Timothy Broglio, president of the U.S. Conference of...

Pope Francis becomes first pontiff to address a G7 summit, raising alarm about AI. The G7 responds

Jun. 14, 2024 14:12 PM EDT

BARI, Italy (AP) — Pope Francis challenged leaders of the world’s wealthy democracies on Frida y to keep human dignity foremost in developing and using artificial intelligence, warning that such powerful technology risks turning human relations themselves into mere algorithms. ...

Virginia city repeals ban on psychic readings as industry grows and gains more acceptance

Jun. 14, 2024 14:02 PM EDT

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Ashley Branton has earned a living as a psychic medium for seven years, helping a growing number of people with heavy choices about toxic relationships, home purchases and cross-country moves. And while the tarot cards are never wrong, she said, they didn’t...

Rare twin elephants in Thailand receive monks' blessings a week after their tumultuous birth

Jun. 14, 2024 11:32 AM EDT

BANGKOK (AP) — Buddhist monks in Thailand on Friday blessed twin baby elephants, one male and the other female, a week after their rare birth came close to being a tragedy. Their mother, Chamchuri, gave birth to the pair on the night of June 7 at a camp in Thailand’s ancient...

US Catholic bishops approve outreach to Native Americans and acknowledge boarding school 'traumas'

Jun. 14, 2024 10:45 AM EDT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — U.S. bishops on Friday approved new guidelines for ministering to Indigenous Catholics, a long in-the-works effort to reinvigorate the ministry and assure those communities that they don't need to feel torn between their Native identity and their Catholic one. ...