VATICAN CITY (AP) - Signaling a dramatic shift in Vatican tone, Pope Francis said the Catholic Church had become obsessed by "small-minded rules" about how to be faithful and that pastors should instead emphasize compassion over condemnation when discussing divisive social issues of abortion, gays and contraception.
'NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Vince Sicari can tell all the lawyer jokes he wants - he just can't play a judge in real life.
HOLDER OF LUCKY POWERBALL TICKET A MYSTERY IN SC: LEXINGTON, S.C. (AP) - When they learned that a Powerball ticket worth $400 million had been sold at a gas station across the road, workers at Econ-O-Bug Termite and Pest Control said they had a few big, wishful dreams. But they didn't have the prized ticket in their hands, so they came to work as usual Thursday in their yellow bug-battling vans.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Here's the truth about a government "shutdown." The government doesn't shut down.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The government's sprawling system of background checks and security clearances is so unreliable it's virtually impossible to adequately investigate the nearly 5 million Americans who have them and make sure they can be trusted with access to military and sensitive civilian buildings, an Associated Press review found.
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Former NFL offensive lineman Brian Holloway initially thought the Twitter photos showing young people partying at his family's second home in upstate New York were a hoax. Then he saw pictures of teenagers standing on the dining room table he bought with his Super Bowl bonus.
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - Two teenage boys have been arrested in a bizarre sword attack on one teen's mother that reportedly included a discussion of killing the woman and eating her liver, a Spokane County sheriff's spokesman said Wednesday.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Internal Revenue Service continued to target conservative political groups even after approving their applications for tax-exempt status, a key Republican lawmaker said Wednesday.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Clicking "Like" on Facebook is constitutionally protected free speech and can be considered the 21st century-equivalent of a campaign yard sign, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.
VIDEO CONFESSOR PLEADS GUILTY TO FATAL DUI IN OHIO: COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Confronted at a hospital by police who said he'd just killed a man, drunk driver Matthew Cordle was angry and in denial.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The man who gunned down 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday visited two hospitals in the weeks before the rampage but denied that he was depressed or having thoughts of harming himself or others, the Department of Veterans Affairs said Wednesday.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - If it seems that giant lottery jackpots have people lining up at convenience stores more frequently, just wait: More big payouts could be coming.
TOMS RIVER, N.J. (AP) - The massive fire that destroyed part of a Jersey shore boardwalk and dozens of businesses began accidentally in wiring damaged in Superstorm Sandy, and should prompt coastal property owners to get their own equipment inspected for similar danger, officials said Tuesday.
LYONS, Colo. (AP) - The emergency airlifts of flood victims waned Tuesday, leaving rescue crews to systematically search the nooks and crannies of the northern Colorado foothills and transportation officials to gauge what it will take to rebuild the wasted landscape.
TEXAS FOOTBALL PLAYER, 12, DIES AFTER ANT BITES: CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) - A 12-year-old boy died after apparently having a severe allergic reaction to ant bites he suffered while warming up during halftime of a South Texas middle school football game, officials confirmed Tuesday.
BOSTON (AP) - Investigators looking into an unlicensed Massachusetts funeral director accused of stealing from customers said Thursday they have found human remains in a rented storage unit, a day after finding cremated remains at another storage facility linked to him.
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) - The heavy thud of tank shells, often just seconds apart, echoed across the Gaza Strip early Friday as thousands of Israeli soldiers launched a ground invasion, escalating a 10-day campaign of heavy air bombardments to try to destroy Hamas' rocket-firing abilities and the tunnels militants use to infiltrate Israel.
HRABOVE, Ukraine (AP) - Ukraine accused pro-Russian separatists of shooting down a Malaysian jetliner with 298 people aboard, sharply escalating the crisis and threatening to draw both East and West deeper into the conflict. The rebels denied downing the aircraft.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Prospects for action on the nation's border crisis faded Thursday as lawmakers traded accusations rather than solutions, raising chances that Congress will head out for its summer recess without doing anything about the tens of thousands of migrant children streaming into South Texas.
SUNNYVALE (AP) - Google's earnings rose modestly in the second quarter as the Internet company's expensive ambitions devoured most of a surprisingly strong gain in revenue.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Federal authorities on Thursday charged FedEx with assisting illegal pharmacies by knowingly delivering painkillers and dangerous drugs to customers without prescriptions.
SUNNYVALE (AP) - Facebook is testing a "Buy" button in its latest effort to help businesses boost their sales through the world's biggest online social network.
RENO, Nev. (AP) - The managers of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas have announced plans to open one at Lake Tahoe this winter after a $60 million renovation of the former Horizon Casino Resort at Stateline.
CUPERTINO (AP) - One of the most trusted advisers to late Apple CEO Steve Jobs is retiring from the iPhone maker's board of directors.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Microsoft announced the biggest layoffs in its 39-year history Thursday, outlining plans to cut 18,000 jobs in a move that marked the CEO's sharpest pivot yet away from his predecessor's drive for the company to make its own devices.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Federal Aviation Administration indicated Wednesday that it is investigating whether a video of a congressman's wedding last month violated the agency's ban on drone flights for commercial purposes.
NEW YORK (AP) - What the Veterans Administration failed to do for double amputee Michael Sulsona in two years, some New York hardware store workers delivered in an hour: They fixed his broken wheelchair.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A 26-year-old man has been charged with involuntary manslaughter more than a year after he hugged a 14-month-old child so tightly that the boy stopped breathing and died, Orangeburg County Sheriff Leroy Ravenell said Wednesday.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Democratic opposition increased Wednesday to legal changes that would speed removals of young Central American migrants, jeopardizing President Barack Obama's call for $3.7 billion in emergency border spending to deal with the remarkable surge of unaccompanied youths at the South Texas border.
SACRAMENTO (AP) - Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tim Draper began submitting signatures Tuesday for a ballot initiative that would ask voters to split California into six separate states, a move he said would create governments that are more manageable and responsive to residents' needs.