News round-up: April 15
Bible to be banned in US?
What does controversial sex novel 50 Shades of Grey have in common with the world’s highest selling book, the Bible? Both have made it on to the Top 10 List of Most Challenged Books, as recorded by the American Library Association. Last year, the ALA — the organisation responsible for what goes on the shelves of American school libraries — received 275 formal challenges from members of the public. That amount of complaints is a record low, and this is the first time the Bible has made it onto this Top Ten list. While formal challenges don’t mean the book will be banned from libraries, the ALA could decide to do that.
Christian theme parks … are real
From Disneyland to Clive Palmer’s Dinosaur Park in Queensland, our world is no stranger to theme parks. But for what appears to be the first time, theme parks related to the Bible and Christianity are popping up. In Argentina, Holy Land offers visitors the chance to sit in on the Last Supper or “interact” with Jesus’ crucifixion. In the USA, from July 7, The Ark Encounter will boast a 510-foot-long Ark that, when boarded, offers plenty of Noah-related sights, sounds and sensations.
Pop singer defeats nuns
One of the world’s most successful pop stars, Katy Perry, won a court case against some nuns in Los Angeles. They didn’t want the Firework and Roar singer to buy their convent. They rejected her offer and decided to sell to someone else. But, as the court ruled, the nuns didn’t have the power to reject Perry (who the LA sisters described as the epitome of “everything we don’t believe in”).
Hidden “Biblical” painting might be worth $180m
A French family uncovered an artwork in their attic. Turns out that painting could be an original by famous Italian artist Caravaggio and has been valued at about $180 million (if it’s not a fake). The painting depicts a beheading scene from the Book of Judith, a disputed text that is accepted by some Christians as part of the Bible.