Sun News Digest


April 04, 2005


Prayers offered for pope

Pope John Paul II lay in state yesterday, his head covered with a white bishop's miter, as church and Italian political leaders bowed before him in prayer. Millions prayed and wept at services across the globe, as the Vatican prepared for the ritual-filled funeral and conclave that will choose a successor. [Page 1a]

Iraqi parliament picks speaker

Iraqi lawmakers ended days of bickering by choosing a Sunni Arab as their parliament speaker, clearing a major hurdle that has held up the formation of a new government after the country's first free elections in 50 years. [Page 8a]

Syria pledges pullout

Syria has pledged to pull all its soldiers and intelligence agents out of neighboring Lebanon by the end of the month, a United Nations envoy said yesterday after holding closed-door talks with Syrian President Bashar Assad. [Page 8a]


Report rates airline service

AirTran, Atlantic Southeast, JetBlue and United improved their service last year but were the only airlines to do so among the 14 major carriers rated in 2003 and 2004, according to an annual report being released today. [Page 3a]

DeLay launches counteroffensive

House Majority Leader Tom DeLay has launched a characteristically defiant response to attacks on his ethics and leadership, even as the controversy threatens to compete with the Republican legislative agenda when Congress returns this week from spring recess. [Page 3a]


New pope to face challenges

The next pope will inherit a church facing serious challenges and will have to find a way to bridge the chasm between the message he preaches and the practices of his flock, who often ignored Pope John Paul II's strict teachings on divorce and contraception. [Page 1b]


Ehrlich compiles mixed record

With a week to go in the legislative session, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. has yet to see a single vote cast against any of his proposals on the floor of the House of Delegates this year. But that's because only his least controversial ideas have made it through the legislative process while others have stalled, giving him a mixed record at this point in the last session before attention shifts to next year's election. [Page 1a]

O'Malley to add lead funding

Ending a heated dispute over funding for Baltimore's lead paint program, city officials said Mayor Martin O'Malley plans to add to his budget the $375,000 that Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. cut from lead paint enforcement funds the state had been giving the city. [Page 1c]

Program targets fire stations

The city and two Baltimore companies are scheduled to announce today that a 112-year-old shuttered firehouse in Highlandtown will be the first project for a public-private partnership aimed at rehabilitating aging fire stations. [Page 3c]


Remembering Billie Holiday

In stores tomorrow, two days away from what would have been the singer's 90th birthday, is perhaps the most expansive retrospective available on Billie Holiday. The Ultimate Collection is a beautifully packaged, multimedia set with 42 songs that cover the artist's 20-year recording career with various record labels and a DVD. [Page 11c]

City history center planned

If an agreement can be reached with city officials, Baltimore's vacant Peale Museum would be turned into the Baltimore City History Center, a cultural attraction where people can learn about Baltimore history. [Page 11c]

`Sin City' leads at box office

Sin City, a highly stylized comic-book adaptation, knocked Guess Who out of the lead position at the box office over the weekend. [Page 13c]


Phelps edges Crocker in butterfly

Michael Phelps, who yielded his spot on the U.S. gold medal 400-meter medley relay to Ian Crocker at the Olympic Games last summer, caught his friend at the finish and won the 100 butterfly by .11 of a second at the U.S. world championship swimming trials. [Page 1d]

Mich. State, Baylor women win

Michigan State beat six-time national champion Tennessee, 68-64, and No. 2 seed Baylor defeated No. 1 seed LSU, 68-57, to advance to tomorrow night's NCAA women's basketball championship. [Page 1d]


Nationals take field in D.C.

The Washington Nationals lost their exhibition game to the New York Mets, 4-3, at RFK Stadium. It was the first time since 1971 that a hometown major league baseball team took the field in the nation's capital. [Page 4e]

O's win exhibition finale

The Orioles defeated the Phillies in Philadelphia, 9-2, in the final exhibition game for both teams. [Page 5e]



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"We've had 263 changes of popes so far, and I'm confident it will work out now according to the needs and the challenges of the time."

Cardinal William H. Keeler, on choosing a successor to Pope John Paul II (Article, Page 1A)

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