The Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA), one of the nation’s most liberal and drifting denominations, has voted to maintain, for the time being, its definition of marriage as “a civil contract between a man and a woman,” narrowly defeating a proposal forwarded at its 220th General Assembly to change the definition to “a covenant between two people.” The 52-percent margin of victory for maintaining a scriptural definition of marriage reflects the division that exists in the mainline denomination, which has been pressured for years by homosexual activists among its clergy and membership to embrace homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle.

Actor and comedian Andy Griffith died of a heart attack July 3 at age 86. The actor was best known for portraying small-town sheriff Andy Taylor in The Andy Griffith Show, which ran on the CBS television network from 1960-68.

Concluding the Catholic bishops' "Fortnight for Freedom," Archbishop Charles Chaput told the crowd of 4,500 assembled at the Basilica Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. that the "Caesar" in our nation's capital needs to be reminded that our rights are the gift of God and not the government.

Federal District Court Judge Daniel P. Jordan III has blocked — pending a full hearing on July 11 — the enforcement of a law passed in Mississippi's last legislative session that would require that doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a local hospital and that the abortion be performed by an Obstetrician/Gynecologist.

A regional court in Cologne, Germany, has determined that religious circumcision of young boys constitutes “illegal bodily harm,” even when performed with the consent of the parents, and that the “fundamental rights of the child to bodily integrity outweighed the fundamental rights of the parents.”

The case arose after the circumcision of a four-year-old Muslim boy led to severe bleeding and other complications. The German physician who performed the operation, identified in the proceeding only as “Dr K,” was charged by German prosecutors. The Cologne court declined to convict the physician, noting that “Dr K” had no way of knowing that the circumcision would be ruled illegal; however, the court held that the procedure itself was criminal.