The Sioux City, Iowa Catholic Diocese recently announced it had concealed a confession of sexual abuse by one of its priests for more than 30 years. Although the Rev. Jerome Coyle admitted to sexually abusing about 50 boys during a 20-year period in 1986, the diocese didn’t contact police or inform the public about his confession.


After his confession, the diocese stripped Coyle of his parish assignments and then sent him to a New Mexico treatment center. Originally Coyle had made his confession to Bishop Lawrence Soens, who was later found to have abused students as a priest and a parochial school principal.


Diocese spokeswoman Susan O’Brien said there were no policies in place that required the diocese to notify police or the public at the time of the confession. Despite the accusations, the Diocese supported Coyle, now 85, financially and recently helped him move back to Iowa to a retirement home across the street from a Catholic school. Two individuals have recently come forward with allegations against Coyle since learning about the concealed confession.


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STUDY SAYS


Religious groups back same political parties in 2018 as they did in 2014


According to a preliminary analysis by the Pew Research Center, religious groups backed the same political parties in the 2018 midterm elections as they did in 2014. The study found 75 percent of white voters who describe themselves as evangelical or born-again Christians voted for Republican House candidates in 2018, with 78 percent voting for Republicans in 2014. For those who describe themselves and religiously unaffiliated, 70 percent voted for Democrats in 2018, while 69 percent voted for Democrats in 2014.


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GOOD BOOK?


“Why Religion?: A Personal Story” by Elaine Pagels


Drawing upon the perspectives of neurologists, anthropologists, and historians, as well as her own research, Elaine Pagels opens unexpected ways of understanding persistent religious aspects of our culture. A provocative and deeply moving account from one of the most compelling religious thinkers at work today, “Why Religion?” explores the spiritual dimension of human experience.


— Ecco


THE WORD


ecumenism: A modern theological and social term referring to the effort to promote understanding and cooperation among diverse Christian groups.


— ReligionStylebook.com


RELIGION AROUND THE WORLD


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


— Protestant: 66.4 percent


— Roman Catholic: 3.8 percent


— Other Christian: 5.4 percent


— Rastafarian: 1 percent


— Other: 1.5 percent


— None: 20.6 percent


— Unspecified: 1.2 percent


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