At Rome's Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, 50 years ago this week, the newly elected pontiff stunned the world by calling the first Catholic Church Council in nearly a century — the Second Vatican Council, or what's known as Vatican II.
Pope John XXIII called for the institution's renewal and more interaction with the modern world.
As a result of Vatican II, the Catholic Church opened its windows onto the modern world, updated the liturgy, gave a larger role to laypeople, introduced the concept of religious freedom and started a dialogue with other religions.
For our series First and Main, Morning Edition is traveling to contested counties in swing states to find out what is shaping voters' decisions this election season. The latest trip took us to Larimer County, Colo.
The presidential race has become much tighter in recent days, and in Colorado, a recent poll puts Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in the lead.
Unless Congress acts, the Defense Department faces some $55 billion in cuts after the first of the year. The cuts are part of what's known as sequestration — automatic across the board spending cuts to both defense and nondefense government spending set in motion by last year's debt-ceiling fight.
Salaries for uniformed personnel are the one major thing that's protected. Otherwise, it's about a 10 percent cut to everything from Pentagon civilian staff to the acquisition of multimillion-dollar aircraft, like the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
After winning the first two games of the National League Division Series in San Francisco, the Reds have now dropped two games at Great American Ball Park, leaving their postseason hanging on Game 5 Thursday afternoon.
The Giants scored 8 runs on 11 hits, three of them home runs. Despite getting 9 hits, the Reds could only muster 3 runs. Mike Leake was the losing pitcher; Tim Lincecum picked up the win in relief for San Francisco.
Mat Latos will start for the Reds in Game 5. Matt Cain takes the mound for the Giants.
Affirmative action in higher education appeared to take a potentially lethal hit on Wednesday, as the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments testing the constitutionality of a race-conscious admission program at the University of Texas, Austin.
The campaign of Gov. Mitt Romney says the Republican presidential candidate will no longer tell the story of meeting Navy SEAL Glen Doherty, who was killed during the attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
Romney revealed during his stump speeches that he met Doherty at a Christmas party he crashed in his San Diego neighborhood.
In a campaign event in Iowa, yesterday, Romney choked up when he retold the story.
A man who admitted he was involved in the making of the film Innocence of Muslims says he did not violate his probation.
Mark Basseley Youssef made a court appearance today not for making the film that resulted in protests throughout the Muslim world but for his 2010 conviction of bank and credit card fraud, The Los Angeles Times reports.
Canada is not used to high profile spy cases. But today there is news that the country has tried its first successful case using the Security of Information Act. And it's quite the case.
The CBC reports that a Navy sub lieutenant pleaded guilty to selling secrets to Russia. Canadian Forces Sub-Lt. Jeffrey Paul Delisle, the CBC reports, simply walked into the Russian Embassy in Ottawa and offered to work for them.