Daily Links: Fri., Sept. 16: Pat Robertson, papal boycott, and lesbian nuns

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The first day of fall is still officially a week away, but here in Chicago the weather has cooled off and summer feels like a distant memory. It's not exactly the time of year you start thinking about gardening, but you can still kick back with a warm cup of coffee and read our October cover story on urban planting. Maybe it will help you get a head start on planning for the spring.

There is one group that still feels like they are on summer vacation: Catholic high school students in Philadelphia, where the schools are still closed due to the teacher strike. But not all the students are happy to be shut out of school.

Meanwhile on the campus of The Catholic University of America, a legal challenge has been made to the plans of reverting to same-sex dorms on campus.

Pat Robertson caused some controversy yesterday (no surprise there) with remarks on Alzheimers, which Megan Murphy-Gill blogged about yesterday. But here is a surprise: someone actually defending Robertson's comments.

Controversy always seems to follow Pope Benedict too, but the Vatican says they aren't concerned about the threatened boycott of the pope's address to the German parliament on his upcoming visit.

And then there's the ongoing Father Frank Pavone controversy. Now he says he'll either find a new diocese or start a religious order to get around the limitations placed on him by Amarillo Bishop Patrick Zurek."The church is bigger than Amarillo," he says, but it sounds like he's really saying "I'm bigger than being just a diocesan priest."

And finally, Religion Dispatches has an interview with Judith Brown, author of the still controversial "Immodest Acts: The Life of a Lesbian Nun in Renaissance Italy" as the book nears its 25th anniversary. Brown talks about the difference her book made for nuns and some of the good and bad that came of it, making for an interesting read.

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