Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Phil Anderson: Same-Sex Marriage Top Religion Story for '15

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Phil Anderson: Same-Sex Marriage Top Religion Story for '15

Article excerpt

In an annual poll conducted by the Religion Newswriters Association, the U.S. Supreme Court's 5-4 decision to legalize same- sex marriage in June was selected as the top religion story of 2015.

Finishing second was the issue of hundreds of thousands of refugees who fled war and strife in the Middle East and flooded into European countries, resulting in a wide range of responses, ranging from opposition to compassion fatigue.

In Religion Newsmaker of the Year voting, Pope Francis came in first place for the third year in a row, as he gathered nearly half of the votes.

According to the Religion Newswriters Association, here are the Top 10 religion stories of the year:

1. Same-sex marriage is legalized in June in a 5-4 decision.

2. Hundreds of thousands of migrants, many fleeing from Syria, pour into Europe by sea and land. The mass migration leads to right- wing resistance in some countries and "compassion fatigue" in other nations that welcome the refugees.

3. The Islamic State expands its reign of horror in Syria and Iraq and claims responsibility for the beheadings of 21 Coptic Christians, the burning alive of a Jordanian pilot, the deaths of hundreds on a Russian airliner, and deadly bombings in Beirut and Paris.

4. Anti-Muslim sentiment flares in the United States and Europe. Citing terrorism fears, some politicians call for surveillance of Muslims and a ban on Muslim refugees.

5. Pope Francis greets crowds in Washington, New York and Philadelphia while he visits the United States in September. The pontiff also speaks before Congress and the United Nations.

6. Islamic State terrorists kill at least 130 people and wound many others on Nov. …

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