Jehovah’s Witnesses: Hamburg attack survivors out of danger2 minute read Yesterday at 7:28 AM CDT
BERLIN (AP) — The Jehovah’s Witnesses say all of the survivors of a shooting at one of its halls in Hamburg earlier this month are out of danger.
A 35-year-old German shot dead six people during a service on March 9. Nine people were wounded, including a woman who lost her unborn child. He then killed himself as police arrived.
“We are happy to say that meanwhile all are out of danger of death,” the church in Germany said in a statement late Monday, adding that four people remain hospitalized.
“All feel a strong need to spend time together, be it in person or by videoconference,” it added. “Sharing what they have experienced obviously helps them to process it.”
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German prosecutors examined late pope in abuse probe2 minute read Preview Yesterday at 8:16 AM CDT
BERLIN (AP) — German prosecutors looking into historical cases of sexual abuse by clergy in the Munich archdiocese said Tuesday that they initially investigated the late Pope Benedict XVI on suspicion of being an accessory to abuse, but later dropped the probe.
Munich prosecutors examined 45 cases of possible wrongdoing by church officials that arose from a report into how the archdiocese handled abuse cases between 1945 and 2019.
The then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was archbishop there from 1977-1982, and the report by a law firm commissioned by the archdiocese and released in January 2022 faulted his handling of four cases during that time. Benedict, who died in December nearly 10 years after his retirement as pope, asked forgiveness for any “grievous faults” in his handling of abuse cases, but denied any personal or specific wrongdoing.
Prosecutors said that that “three (at the time) living church personnel managers” were listed as suspects for a time during their investigation, German news agency dpa reported. They were Benedict; Cardinal Friedrich Wetter, his successor in Munich who served from 1982 to 2008; and Gerhard Gruber, a former vicar general.
Australian jury mulls verdicts in Israeli principal trial4 minute read Preview 2:33 AM CDT
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — An Australian jury retired on Wednesday to consider their verdicts following the six-week trial of a former principal of a Melbourne ultra-Orthodox Jewish girls school accused of molesting three sisters.
Malka Leifer, 56, has pleaded not guilty in the Victoria state County Court to 27 sexual offenses that were allegedly committed at the Adass Israel School, where she was head of religion and later principal, and at her Melbourne home and at school camps in the rural Victorian towns of Blampied and Rawson between 2003 and 2007.
Prosecutor Justin Lewis had asked the 12 jurors to consider that Leifer, a Tel Aviv-born mother of eight, showed sexual interest in the girls when they were teenage students at the school and later when they became student teachers there. He alleged that Leifer engaged in sexual activities with them and took advantage of their vulnerability and ignorance in sexual matters, and her position of authority.
The sisters had an isolated upbringing in the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community and received no sexual education, the court heard. They were aged around 12, 14 and 16 when Leifer arrived at the school from Israel in 2001.
Apaches tell court copper mine would harm sacred sites4 minute read Preview Updated: Yesterday at 5:30 PM CDT
Greek city marks 80th anniversary of Auschwitz train convoy3 minute read Preview Sunday, Mar. 19, 2023
THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — Greece’s second-largest city, Thessaloniki, commemorated on Sunday the 80th anniversary of the departure of the first train convoy for the Auschwitz camp.
Officials, led by President Katerina Sakellaropoulou, marched from Eleftherias ("Freedom") Square, where members of the city’s Jewish community were rounded up by the German occupying forces, to the city’s Old Train Station, where they laid red carnations on the tracks. Some marchers held a banner reading “Thessalonki Auschwitz 80 years: Never again” and white balloons carrying the same slogan were released.
The first train carrying Jewish people departed from the station, which is now a freight terminal, on March 15, 1943; the last one, on Aug. 7 that year. Most Jews, more than 48,000 of them, were sent to the Auschwitz II-Birkenau sub-camp, where almost all were immediately gassed. Another 4,000 were sent to Treblinka and a smaller number to Bergen Belsen. About 90% of a once-thriving community, most of them descendants of Sephardic Jews who fled Spain after 1492, perished in the Holocaust.
“Thessaloniki has acknowledged its part of the responsibility” in the fate of the Jewish community, Sakellaropoulou said. Thessaloniki, once part of the Ottoman Empire, was captured by Greece in 1912, and relations between the Greek and Jewish communities were often uneasy. The tension was exacerbated by the arrival, after 1922, of ethnic Greeks fleeing Asia Minor following Greece’s defeat in a three-year war with Turkey. The new impoverished refugees saw Thessaloniki’s Jews, many of them successful professionals, as remnants of the hated Ottoman Empire.
Pope Benedict XVI’s aide acknowledges criticism over memoir2 minute read Preview Sunday, Mar. 19, 2023
Pope promotes ‘humanitarian corridors’ for asylum-seekers2 minute read Preview Saturday, Mar. 18, 2023
Vatican closes embassy in Nicaragua after Ortega’s crackdown3 minute read Preview Saturday, Mar. 18, 2023
A few thoughts for Christians as Good Friday approaches5 minute read Preview Saturday, Mar. 18, 2023
Jews were in a state of high alert on Feb. 25, the so-called “day of hate” against members of that community. That was the day extremist and antisemitic groups called for violence and harassment against Jews in the U.S.
Mormon Church gives water to boost imperiled Great Salt Lake5 minute read Preview Friday, Mar. 17, 2023
2nd Vatican official says pope OK’d ransom payments for nun3 minute read Preview Friday, Mar. 17, 2023
Librarian fired for ‘unkind pushback’ at conservative event2 minute read Preview Friday, Mar. 17, 2023
HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A library director in Tennessee has been fired after the actor and evangelist Kirk Cameron accused him of “unkind pushback” to visiting celebrities during a conservative event last month, officials said.
Sumner County Mayor John Isbell told The Tennessean that the county's library board voted 4-3 on Wednesday to fire Hendersonville library director Allan Morales. The mayor said Morales' termination was “related to the Kirk Cameron event.”
Photos of the Feb. 25 event posted by Cameron on Facebook show him reading a children's book to a room full of dozens of kids and adults. He wrote that the event involved “praying and teaching faith in God and moral values to our kids,” as well as the national anthem and the Pledge of Allegiance.
Also in attendance were Missy Robertson of the reality TV show “Duck Dynasty” and former University of Kentucky women’s swimmer Riley Gaines.
Vatican unveils new ethnographic display of Rwanda screens3 minute read Preview Thursday, Mar. 16, 2023
Pope sought to lose ‘as little as possible’ in London deal3 minute read Preview Thursday, Mar. 16, 2023
Russia OKs alternative civil service for mobilized believer4 minute read Preview Thursday, Mar. 16, 2023
TALLINN, Estonia (AP) — A court in Russia on Thursday affirmed the right of a man mobilized to fight in Ukraine to perform an alternative form of civil service due to his stated religious beliefs, setting a precedent that could persuade more reluctant draftees to try to get out of military service.
The Leningrad Regional Court upheld a ruling of a lower court that deemed the drafting of Pavel Mushumansky unlawful and said he was entitled to fulfill his duty in another way, Mushumansky’s lawyer, Alexander Peredruk, said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a call-up of army reservists in September. Although officials said 300,000 men were drafted as planned, the mobilization also spurred resistance. Tens of thousands of men fled the country, and some of those who stayed ignored their summons.
Others contested enlistment in the courts, including by claiming a right to alternative service, which entails taking up a paying job at state-run institutions or organizations. Those opting for alternative service often work in hospitals, care homes or post offices.
US tribes get bison as they seek to restore bond with animal4 minute read Preview Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2023
NY diocese facing flood of lawsuits files for bankruptcy2 minute read Preview Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2023
Texas judge in abortion pill case is a conservative favorite7 minute read Preview Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2023
Videos show scattered protests during Iran’s fire festival3 minute read Preview Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2023
‘Nazi’ references: BBC sportscaster’s tweet revives debate6 minute read Preview Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2023