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Survey: American Catholics Favor Change

The majority of American Catholics in a nationwide survey said they favor a more democratic church with a pope who would allow married and women priests and American bishops with more decision-making power.

The poll, conducted by the Gallup organization and commissioned by the Rev. Andrew Greeley, whose new novel, “White Smoke,” is about the selection of a new pope, found that most Catholics also supported structural changes in the church, such as allowing priests and laity to elect bishops and giving lay people a greater voice in the church.

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4 ex-presidents among hundreds at Barbara Bush’s funeral

UPDATED: 9:46 a.m.

Four former presidents joined ambassadors, sports stars and hundreds of other mourners on a gray, rainy Saturday at the private funeral for former first lady Barbara Bush, filling the nation’s largest Episcopal church a day after more than 6,000 people paid their respects to the woman known by many as “America’s matriarch.”