When tragedy strikes, as in Newtown, Conn., prayer resides mostly in the shadows of those personally affected. The public ritual requires politicians to assure survivors of their thoughts and prayers -- what one cynical...
NEW YORK CITY -- It hasn't been an easy time -- year, decade, early century -- for organized religion. Books by atheists proliferate, some meaner than others. Fewer men and women attend church or synagogue services. The season highlights Christmas and in recent years Hanukkah, but the cultural emphasis is more materialistic than meditative. Confidence in organized religion has declined to 44 percent, as measured by Gallup.
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