A church in St. Petersburg, Florida, is taking an opportunity to speak out in support of the family of George Floyd, who died this Monday after a police officer pressed his knee against Floyd’s neck for up to eight minutes.
Does the Constitution compel state and local governments to subsidize religion? That question might seem preposterous, since the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause prohibits the government from funding religious exercise and limits its ability to fund religious facilities. Yet in 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court flipped the First Amendment on its head by ruling, for the first time ever, that the Constitution sometimes requires the government to provide public funds directly to a church. Its decision in Trinity Lutheran v. Comerblew a chunk out of the wall between church and state. And on Monday, Justice Brett Kavanaugh announced his intention to demolish the remainder of that wall by invalidating laws that bar government subsidization of religion.
Pope Francis, whose papacy has been marked by efforts to quell a global crisis over sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy, said on Tuesday he was committed to stopping the abuse of nuns by priests and bishops, some of whom had used the women as sex slaves.
Miguel Angel Ibarra carried out weddings and baptisms, first in Colombia and then in southern Spain, despite having never been ordained.
Those ceremonies will still be recognised, the Church says, but not his communions or the confessions he heard.