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Tuesday, Jul 29th

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Pope Benedict retired after inquiry into 'Vatican gay officials', says paper

VaticanA potentially explosive report has linked the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI to the discovery of a network of gay prelates in the Vatican, some of whom – the report said – were being blackmailed by outsiders.

The pope's spokesman declined to confirm or deny the report, which was carried by the Italian daily newspaper La Repubblica. The paper said the pope had taken the decision on 17 December that he was going to resign – the day he received a dossier compiled by three cardinals delegated to look into the so-called "Vatileaks" affair.

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Moon water complicates formation theory

Moon waterThe interior of the moon contained water early in its history, suggesting the formation theories of the moon may have to be re-thought, U.S. researchers say.
University of Michigan researchers and colleagues found tiny amounts of water in mineral grains from samples from the lunar highlands obtained during the Apollo missions.

The lunar highlands are thought to represent the original crust that crystallized from a mostly molten early moon, suggesting the lunar interior contained water during this molten stage before the crust solidified, a university release said Monday.

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Pope will have security, immunity by remaining in the Vatican

Pope immunePope Benedict's decision to live in the Vatican after he resigns will provide him with security and privacy. It will also offer legal protection from any attempt to prosecute him in connection with sexual abuse cases around the world, Church sources and legal experts say.

"His continued presence in the Vatican is necessary, otherwise he might be defenseless. He wouldn't have his immunity, his prerogatives, his security, if he is anywhere else," said one Vatican official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

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Yale University to train military interrogators

YaleAs early as this April, Yale plans to welcome a training center for interrogators to its campus.

The center’s primary goal would be to coach U.S. Special Forces on interviewing tactics designed to detect lies. Charles Morgan III, a professor of psychiatry who will head the project, calls these tactics “people skills.” These techniques would be honed using New Haven’s immigrant community as subjects. Morgan hopes that by having soldiers practice their newly acquired techniques on “someone they can’t necessarily identify with” (read: someone who is not white), they’ll be better prepared to do ‘the real thing’ abroad.

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The Vatican's New Chief Banker Has Financial Ties to Warships

Vatican chief bannerWith controversy already surrounding Pope Benedict XVI's surprise retirement announcement from earlier this week, another scandal is brewing in Vatican City. Vatican officials have long maintained that no church money goes to funding war, but today they scrambled to address concerns over their newly appointed bank president, who has business ties to a warship builder.

The pope approved German lawyer Ernst von Freyberg to head the Vatican bank (officially known as the Institute for the Works of Religion) today, according to a Reuters report. The appointment could be Benedict's last major decision before he retires at the end of the month, and Catholics are counting on von Freyberg to rehabilitate the tarnished image of a bank beset by last year's money laundering scandals. The bank has been without a president since Ettore Gotti Tedeschi's ouster in May 2012.

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Documents of disgraced Legion of Christ released in RI

Legion of Christ

Documents related to a disgraced Roman Catholic order called the Legion of Christ were released to the public Friday amid a legal battle over an elderly widow's bequest of $60 million to the organization.

The Associated Press, The New York Times, the National Catholic Reporter and The Providence Journal sought to unseal the documents. A Superior Court judge agreed but gave the Legion time to ask the Supreme Court to intervene. The Rhode Island Supreme Court on Thursday declined to delay the documents' release.

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When God Is Not Enough: Religious States Have Highest Rates of Anti-Depressant Use

Religion and anti depressantsThey say that religion is the opiate of the masses, but it seems that the opiates of the religious are antidepressants.

A study released yesterday confirmed that Mississippi remains the most religious state in the Union, followed by a handful of its southern belt brothers: Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, as well as the Mormon stronghold of Utah. The Gallup poll showed that 58 percent of all Mississippians identify as “very religious.”

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