Shinto festival carries on centuries-old tradition in Japan

CHICHIBU, Japan (AP) — As fireworks light up the winter night, scores of men, women and teenagers crying “washoi, washoi” haul the last of six towering, lantern-covered floats up a small hill and into...

Report: Israeli military inflated Orthodox draft figures

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s military is facing major criticism after a media report said it had inflated figures for ultra-Orthodox enlistment, a sensitive political subject in a country where most Jewi...

Latter-day Saints leaders reaffirm support for refugees

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is reaffirming its support for refugees and encouraging members to create welcoming communities for the newcomers. ...

Italy expels 2 suspected extremists from Bangladesh, Morocco

ROME (AP) — Italy’s interior ministry says two suspected extremists from Bangladesh and Morocco, including an imam who allegedly beat children studying the Quran, have been expelled from the country. ...

17 stories inspired by great American paintings

“From Sea to Stormy Sea: 17 Stories Inspired by Great American Paintings,” Pegasus Books, edited by Lawrence Block Writers take their inspiration from a variety of sources: an unforg...

In death and life, Lebanese woman shows religious law fight

BEIRUT (AP) — Nadyn Jouny’s sister taped up two messages in her memory inside a closet at the family home — one of motherly love tinged with pain, another of defiance. The first Joun...

Tennis Australia to honor Court’s Grand Slam anniversary

Tennis Australia has confirmed it plans to honor Margaret Court’s 50th anniversary of her 1970 Grand Slam during January’s Australian Open, but stressed her controversial anti-gay views “do not align ...

Sabbath buses barrel through Israel’s religious-secular rift

TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Tel Aviv has taken a major step to cement its status as Israel’s secular mecca, launching public transportation services on the Jewish sabbath and redrawing the lines in the co...

Taiwan police draw criticism for promoting Buddhism in uniform

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A group of Taiwanese law enforcement officers has drawn criticism from the public after dancing in uniform in a promotional video for a Buddhist humanitarian organization....

Taiwan authenticity to take stage in Paris

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwanese theater troupe "Shakespeare's Wild Sisters Group" will put on its latest modern play, "Dear Life," at the Paris Autumn Festival (Festival...

Buddhist nationalists claim victory in Sri Lankan election

In this mountain city that was for centuries home to Sri Lanka’s kings and in recent years has been riven by religious violence, Buddhist nationalists are rejoicing the election of the country&r...

Bloomberg: US would benefit from more, not fewer, immigrants

Presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday that the United States needs “an awful lot more immigrants rather than less.” On his second day campaigning for the Democratic nomi...

Bloomberg: US would benefit from more, not fewer, immigrants

PHOENIX (AP) — Presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg says the United States needs “an awful lot more immigrants rather than less.” On his second day of campaigning for the Democra...

Religious freedom law plays key role in migrant-aid case

Religious liberty is often a high priority for conservatives, but last week’s acquittal of an Arizona man prosecuted for aiding migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border is spotlighting the ability of rel...

A second chance on Chicago’s South Side

CHICAGO (AP) — Many know the violent repute of parts of this city, the shootings, gangs, forgotten main streets and residential blocks plagued with boarded-up houses and apartment buildings. ...