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Religious Scandals

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Rachel Zoll, who for 17 years as religion writer for The Associated Press endeared herself to colleagues, competitors and sources with her warm heart and world-class reporting skills, died Friday in Amherst, Massachusetts, after a three-year bout with brain cancer. She was 55.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina's effort to become the next-to-last state to pass a hate crimes law survived a challenge from some Republican senators who questioned whether it is necessary to add penalties to violent crimes based on someone's motives.

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — For the first time, prominent Republican state senators on Wednesday put their support behind legislation in Pennsylvania to change the law to allow now-adult victims of child sexual abuse to sue the perpetrators or institutions that did not prevent it when it happened years or decades ago.

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