WEEK IN RELIGION

Long-time American Atheists president David Silverman was recently placed on leave by the organization while it conducts an investigation into an unspecified complaint it received last week. Silverman had been with the 6,000-member organization since 2004 and became the American Atheists president in 2010. The American Atheists board members received a complaint about Silverman on April 7, but did not describe the nature of the complaint. “The Board takes very seriously the concerns expressed and, in accordance with organization policies, the Board has placed Mr. Silverman on leave while an independent investigation is conducted,” the Board’s statement said. American Atheists National Program Director Nick Fish will take over Silverman’s role and said the complaint was in regard to “alleged violations of the American Atheists code of conduct and staff handbook.” Silverman has been a vocal leader as the president and has appeared on FOX News on a number of occasions to debate the “War on Christmas.”

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STUDY SAYS

Anti-Semitism attacks dropped in 2017

According to a recent report by researchers at Tel Aviv University, the number of violent attacks on Jews dropped in 2017. Researchers found that assaults specifically targeting Jews fell 9 percent in 2017. Researchers recorded 327 such cases in 2017 compared to 361 in 2016.

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GOOD BOOK?

“To Change the Church: Pope Francis and the Future of Catholicism” by Ross Douthat

Born Jorge Mario Bergoglio in 1936, today Pope Francis is the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church. Pope Francis’s stewardship of the Church, while perceived as a revelation by many, has provoked division throughout the world. In “To Change the Church,” Ross Douthat explains why the particular debate Francis has opened—over communion for the divorced and the remarried — is so dangerous: How it cuts to the heart of the larger argument over how Christianity should respond to the sexual revolution and modernity itself, how it promises or threatens to separate the church from its own deep past, and how it divides Catholicism along geographical and cultural lines.

— Simon & Schuster

THE WORD

Vaisakhi: Pronounced “VA-sock-ee.” The most important Sikh holiday, celebrated annually in mid-April.

— ReligionStylebook.com

RELIGION AROUND THE WORLD

According to the CIA World Factbook, the religious makeup of India is:

• Hindu: 79.8 percent

• Muslim: 14.2 percent

• Christian: 2.3 percent

• Sikh: 1.7 percent

• Other and unspecified: 2 percent

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