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Religion
5:28 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

Pope's Reference To 'Gay Lobby' Broaches Taboo Topic

Pope Francis leads rosary concluding Marian month of May on May 31, at St. Peter's square at the Vatican.
Tiziana Fabi AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 6:35 pm

The Roman Catholic Church teaches that homosexual acts are a grave sin. But the existence of active gay prelates in the Vatican bureaucracy known as the Roman Curia has been considered a poorly held secret for centuries.

Robert Mickens, Vatican correspondent for the British Catholic weekly The Tablet, says the normal definition of a lobby as an organized group of people pushing a specific agenda does not apply here.

He prefers to call it a gay subculture.

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The Two-Way
5:14 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

U.S. Says It Has 'High Confidence' Syria Used Chemical Weapons

Syrian rebel fighters hold a position Thursday in the northwestern town of Maaret al-Numan. At least 93,000 people, including more than 6,500 children, have been killed in Syria's civil war.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 8:19 pm

The White House has "high confidence" that the Syrian regime is using chemical weapons against rebel forces, and the U.S. is prepared to offer military assistance to the opposition, a senior administration official said Thursday.

Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said that an estimated 100 to 150 Syrians have been killed in attacks using sarin gas, although the figure "is likely incomplete."

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Parallels
5:11 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

As Sanctions Squeeze, Iranians Keep Improvising

Female supporters of Iranian presidential candidate Saeed Jalili, Iran's top nuclear negotiator, chant slogans at a campaign rally in Tehran on Wednesday, two days ahead of the election.
Vahid Salemi AP

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 6:59 pm

Iranians have lived with American sanctions for many years, and we could see the evidence of this when we stepped into a Tehran shop called GM Auto Parts.

It had the famous blue and white General Motors logo, though the sign, like almost everything in the spare parts shop for American cars, looked decades old.

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The Salt
5:03 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

Saving Grandma's Strawberry Cake From The Clutches Of Jell-O

Jeremy Jackson wanted to rethink his grandma Mildred's famous Strawberry Cake recipe, which uses boxed cake mix and Jell-O. His updated cupcake version is shown on the right.
Jeremy Jackson for NPR

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 6:35 pm

Jeremy Jackson's grandma Mildred was famous for her strawberry cake. Legend has it that one of the families in her small Missouri town loved the dessert so much, they "commissioned" her to make it for them once a week.

Jackson is the author of Good Day for A Picnic: Simple Food that Travels Well. He shared two versions of his Strawberry Cake for All Things Considered's Found Recipes series.

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The Two-Way
4:16 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

American Airlines To Add More Seats To 737s, MD-80s

Room for a few more seats? An American Airlines Boeing 737-800 aircraft.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 4:47 pm

If you thought your coach-class seat lacked legroom now, American Airlines has some bad news: It's probably going to get worse.

American plans to add seats to its Boeing 737s and McDonnell Douglas MD-80s, which account for about two-thirds of the airline's entire fleet of jetliners. The move was disclosed in a regulatory filing on Wednesday.

Here's American vice president of flight service Laurie Curtis quoted in the Airline Biz Blog.

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