from The Great Debate:

Why a medieval peasant got more vacation time than you

By Lynn Stuart Parramore
August 29, 2013

Life for the medieval peasant was certainly no picnic. His life was shadowed by fear of famine, disease and bursts of warfare. His diet and personal hygiene left much to be desired. But despite his reputation as a miserable wretch, you might envy him one thing: his vacations.

German Catholic seminarians expelled for Nazi jokes and Hitler salute

August 1, 2013

(Würzburg cathedral, July 2007/Zairon)

An investigation into rumors of neo-Nazi activity at a seminary in Bavaria has resulted in two student priests being expelled for imitating the Nazi salute and making jokes about death camps, two bishops announced.

French Muslims split over start of Ramadan despite prior accord on date

July 9, 2013

(A child is seen near members of the Muslim community attending midday prayers at Strasbourg Grand Mosque in Strasbourg on the first day of Ramadan July 9, 2013. REUTERS/Vincent Kessle)

German court backs gay couples’ tax rights in setback to Merkel

June 7, 2013

(Revellers wearing flowers on their heads talk at the fringes of the Christopher Street Day parade in Berlin, June 23, 2012. REUTERS/Thomas Peter)

Turkish hadith project presents Prophet Mohammad’s sayings for the 21st Century

May 22, 2013

(The new seven-volume encyclopaedia of hadiths is pictured at the library of Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate in Ankara May 21, 2013.  REUTERS/Umit Bektas)

from Nicholas Wapshott:

Austerity is a moral issue

By Nicholas Wapshott
May 17, 2013

Security worker opens the door of a government job center as people wait to enter in Marbella, Spain, December 2, 2011. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

Ex-Catholic has no right to keep his Church job, German court rules

April 26, 2013

(A sign reading ‘Arbeitsgerichte’ (Labour courts) is pictured in the late evening in Hamburg September 1, 2012. REUTERS/Morris Mac Matzen )

Insight – After cathedral clash, Copts doubt their future in Egypt

April 11, 2013

(Coptic Christians run from tear gas fired by police inside the main cathedral during clashes with Muslims standing outside the Cathedral in Cairo, April 7, 2013. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih)

Extensive but little-known German Holocaust archive reaches out to survivors

April 3, 2013

(A filing cabinet containing original documents with information about prisoners of the former concentration camp of Auschwitz is seen at the International Tracing Service (ITS) in the central German town of Bad Arolsen May 10, 2006. REUTERS/Alex Grimm)