News Corporation in New York City. Photo by Sandi Villarreal / Sojourners

News Corporation in New York City. Photo by Sandi Villarreal / Sojourners

The Church of England has sold its $3 million worth of shares in Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. due to concerns about the company's ethics.

Eight News Corp. journalists have been charged by British authorities in connection with a phone-hacking scandal. They are accused of hacking telephone lines belonging to celebrities, politicians, law enforcement officials and crime victims; bribing police officers and paying private investigators for illegally obtained information.

"The Church of England was not satisfied that News Corporation had shown, or is likely in the immediate future to show, a commitment to implement necessary corporate governance reform," the church said in a statement on Tuesday (Aug. 7).

The church also said it was concerned that Murdoch is both chairman and chief executive of News Corp.

Pope Benedict XVI photo by Natursports /

Pope Benedict XVI photo by Natursports /

Nearly lost amid ongoing reports about the Vatican leaks scandal, Rome’s battle with American nuns, the American bishops’ battle for religious freedom, and the priest on trial in Philadelphia, was the news that, by the way, Pope Benedict XVI plans to visit Philadelphia.

Benedict made the announcement at the end of his visit to Milan on June 3 for the church’s triennial World Meeting of Families. The next meeting would be in Philadelphia in 2015, he said, and he planned to be there, “God willing.”

True, the trip won’t happen until 2015, and it may well not happen at all — Benedict would be 88 by then. Even if there's a new pope in 2015, the City of Brotherly Love is still almost assured of getting a papal visit — new popes like to underscore continuity, and respect the plans their predecessors had in place.

In a larger sense, the visit would be about more than promoting family life, and in many ways it's related to other Catholic issues now dominating the headlines. Here’s why.

Ken Fong 04-20-2011
Our ability to love others who have sinned against us flows out of our real experience of Jesus forgiving our own sins.
Ken Fong 03-17-2011
Jesus came to us full of grace and truth (John 1).
Nadia Bolz-Weber 11-17-2010
Well, it's parable day again boys and girls. Parables are like Jesus' subversive little stories of an alternate universe.
Leroy Barber 11-17-2010
On November 2, the mid-term elections were held and the conversation the next day for many people I talked with was that there were no African-American senators.
Joseph Nangle 07-01-2010
Why I remain a Catholic priest -- despite repeated scandal.
Jarrod McKenna 05-21-2010
British Evangelist Steve Chalke upset a lot of evangelicals of a reformed bent with two little paragraphs in (his book that has so much worth reading in it beyond what has got all the attention)
Jarrod McKenna 04-21-2010

This video clip by The Work of The People is going to upset a lot of people.


Douglas Kmiec 04-15-2010
It is far too easy to blame the highly publicized priestly scandal for the alienation of Catholics in Europe or the United States.
Cesar Baldelomar 04-08-2010

The Catholic church is reeling from the several sexual abuse allegations that have come to light over the past three months. Downplaying the severity of this scandal will only further damage the already beleaguered church's image and credibility. Many in the media blame Pope Benedict XVI for the mismanagement of the sexual abuse crisis.

Diana Butler Bass 04-08-2010
I'm not much of a sports person, but I have to admit that April 5 was a remarkable day for sports -- especially sports and religion.
Jessica Coblentz 04-05-2010
"What if the resurrection was a choice?"
Liza Field 03-31-2010
After a hard winter in the Eastern United States, spring offers a resurrection. Particularly here in the Appalachian Bible Belt, we're looking toward Easter.
Wendy Murray 03-30-2010
The sex abuse scandals plaguing the Catholic Church simply will not go away. Even the Pope himself is not immune.
Kathy Khang 03-23-2010
Tiger & Elin. Jon & Kate. Deadly Viper and some angry Asian Americans.
Tracey Bianchi 03-04-2010
It is still very much winter in Chicago. Sure, the calendar says March, but the piles of snow on the ground look more like mid-January. Everything is brown and crusty.