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Virus cases balloon in S. Korea as outbreak shifts, spreads

Hyung-Jin Kim and Matt Sedensky, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 21st - 2:56am

Schools were shuttered, churches told worshipers to stay away and some mass gatherings were banned as cases of a new virus swelled Friday in South Korea, the newest front in a widening global outbreak.

Abuse survivors seek more progress 1 year after papal summit

Nicole Winfield, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 12:42pm

Survivors of church sex abuse have descended on Rome this week, marking the first anniversary of Pope Francis’ summit of church leaders on preventing abuse with calls for more accountability and acknowledgment of their pain.

New visa rules set off 'panic wave' in immigrant communities

Philip Marcelo and Sophia Tareen, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 10:45am

After nearly a dozen years moving through the U.S. visa system, Sai Kyaw's brother and sister and their families were at the finish line: a final interview before they could leave Myanmar to join him in Massachusetts and work at his restaurant.

Police: Stabbing at London mosque not terror-related

The Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 9:34am

A man was stabbed during afternoon prayers at one of London's biggest mosques Thursday, and police officers detained another man on suspicion of attempted murder.

Amid protests, Portugal lawmakers vote to allow euthanasia

Barry Hatton, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 6:46am

Portugal’s parliament voted Thursday in favor of allowing euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide for terminally ill people.

Vatican sees intense interest in opening of Pius XII archive

Nicole Winfield, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 6:13am

More than 150 historians and researchers have signed up to access the soon-to-open Vatican archives of Pope Pius XII, evidence of the intense scholarly interest into the World War II-era pope and his record during the Holocaust, officials said Thursday.

Iran announces 3 new cases of new virus after 2 deaths

Amir Vahdat, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 4:30am

Iran said Thursday that three more people have been infected with the new virus that originated in central China, following an announcement the day before that two people had died of the illness caused by the virus in the Iranian city of Qom.

Looted 18th century crown returned to Ethiopia after decades

Elias Meseret, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 4:29am

A rare and looted crown from the 18th century was returned to Ethiopia on Thursday after it was discovered in the Netherlands two decades ago.

Indiana official 'sorry' for Islamophobic posts won't resign

The Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 19th - 2:28pm

An Indiana councilman whose predecessor resigned after posting Islamophobic comments online says he will not step down after he was also criticized for sharing similar views on Facebook.

Pope tenderly kissed on forehead by man in front-row seat

The Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 19th - 11:44am

Well-wishers at Pope Francis' weekly audience have thrust soccer T-shirts, flowers and many a wailing baby into his arms. And on New Year's Eve, one admirer, trying to pull him closer, yanked his arm so hard he slapped her hand to free himself, an angry reaction Francis later famously apologized for.

Another Catholic diocese seeks bankruptcy after abuse deals

Mark Scolforo, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 19th - 11:19am

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, filed for bankruptcy Wednesday, six months after disclosing it had paid millions of dollars to people sexually abused as children by its clerics.

New 'ministerial' church handbook clarifies transgender guidelines, excommunication

Liesl Nielsen, KSL.com  |  Posted Feb 19th - 9:01am

A new church handbook released Wednesday combines two older guideline manuals and details several changes. Here are the highlights.

Tennessee governor won't intervene in scheduled execution

Travis Loller, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 19th - 6:30am

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee said Wednesday he will not grant clemency to a death row inmate whose group of supporters includes family members of his victims and past and present prison workers.

France to end imam, teacher deals to counter extremism

Sylvie Corbet and Jean-Francois Badias, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 18th - 2:27pm

French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday announced measures intended to counter Islamic extremism in France by giving the government more authority over the schooling of children, the financing of mosques and the training of imams.

Democrats diverge on outreach to anti-abortion swing voters

Elana Schor, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 18th - 1:55pm

In a party that’s shifted leftward on abortion rights, Democratic presidential hopefuls are offering different approaches to a central challenge: how to talk to voters without a clear home in the polarizing debate over the government’s role in the decision to end a pregnancy.

Israel confirms ultra-Orthodox draft figures were inflated

Joseph Krauss, Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 20th - 9:21am

The Israeli military said Thursday it found “serious, systemic failures” in its own reporting that inflated figures on the enlistment of ultra-Orthodox Jews, a hot-button issue in a country where most Jewish men are subject to mandatory conscription.

Christian theme park in Florida laying off most workers

The Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 19th - 8:11am

A Christian-oriented theme park in central Florida that describes itself as “bringing the Bible to life” is laying off most of its workers.

Christian sues US Postal Service over Sunday work shifts

The Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 19th - 7:17am

A former Pennsylvania mail carrier says the U.S. Postal Service violated his rights by requiring him to work Sundays.

Senator, school leader win Wisconsin congressional primary

The Associated Press  |  Posted Feb 18th - 9:17pm

A state lawmaker and a school board president won primaries Tuesday to earn the right to run for an open seat in northern Wisconsin's 7th Congressional District once held by a reality TV star.