Shortly before meeting with Vatican officials, Archbishop Sean P. O’Malley of Boston, made a rare public statement of his frustration with the Vatican’s slowness in resolving the backlog of priest abuse cases. Nationwide, about 700 priests and deacons have been temporarily removed from ministry, The Boston Globe’s Michael Paulson reports, pending final Vatican decisions–a situation O’Malley says is unfair both to accused priests and victims.
9:53 am: “‘The culture wars have not only come to the workplace, the corporate world is leading the charge,’” wrote Richard Peterson, a former Hewlett-Packard employee fired over failure to comply with company diversity guidelines, in an email to NPR’s Barbara Bradley Hagerty. “‘The situation makes my thoughts and beliefs a hate crime.’” The “situation” was HP’s display of five “diversity” posters, encouraging respect for the differences between employees, “Black, Blond, Old, Hispanic or Gay.” Peterson, a born-again Christian, responded by posting his own series of Bible verses describing the punishment awaiting gays. Concluding her series on religion in the workplace, Hagerty explores two employee lawsuits brought against company diversity policies, and wonders whether companiess that forbid discrimination against gays are discriminating against Christians.
8:56 am: “How did you know you were God?” Playbill News announces the opening of the off-Broadway musical, Children’s Letters to God, at Manhattan’s Lamb’s Theater. And Canadian pop-culture magazine Exclaim! rediscovers the handy, slow-story-week non-shocker: while you may think there’s a “sacred” separation of “Church and Rock” (being, you know, “‘the Devil’s music’”), in fact it has roots in gospel and some musicians and pop cult figures actually believe in God…
8:51 am: James M. Honeycutt, the North Carolina Judge who ordered the removal of religious references from court oaths and bailiffs’ calls, yesterday was ordered by the state’s Supreme Court to restore those references. Citing concern for the non-Christians served by the N.C. court system, Honeycutt had replaced witnesses’ Bible oaths with affirmations that didn’t refer to God. According to Winston-Salem Journal reporter Laura Giovanelli, the complaints were brought by Honeycutt’s own clerks and “the judge has been accused by opponents of not just breaking state law, but of taking God out of the courtroom.”