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Over 300 people gathered in a cornfield chapel on Sunday, July 9.

Sister Janet McCann at the chapel's dedication. Photo from David Jones/Lancaster Against Pipelines, used with permission.

The chapel, a bare bones structure, rose out of a clear plot in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. There are no walls; its boundaries are marked by tall rows of growing corn. Any breeze that blew over the rows must have been welcome — the temperatures had been hovering around the 80s pretty much all week.


This was the scene as the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, a Catholic order of nuns, dedicated their new open-air chapel.

But this open-air chapel isn't just for prayers. It's a protest.

It's built directly in the path of an incoming natural gas pipeline.

The Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline will be an underground extension of the Transco pipeline and will cut across 183 miles of Pennsylvania — including directly through the nun's cornfield.

Sister Martha Wachtel, ASC. Photo courtesy of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, used with permission.

A federal commission gave Williams Partners, the company building the pipeline, permission to use eminent domain to claim the land, pending a July 17 hearing.

In response, the nuns teamed up with a local grassroots group called Lancaster Against Pipelines to organize and construct the chapel in protest.

"They're very fine people," Sister Sara Dwyer says.

The result is that, if Williams Partners really wants the land, they're going to need to tear down the pews and arbor first.

The chapel. Photo courtesy of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, used with permission.

The sisters say their protest is a religious one and the pipeline violates one of their ethics, which names the Earth as a sanctuary to be revered.

"It's not just about this pipeline," says Dwyer. "It's about drawing awareness to what fossil fuel usage has done to the poor, to communities, and to the planet."

"We see this as a moral, religious, and spiritual stand," Dwyer says.

This isn't the first time eminent domain has been used for pipelines.

The permission has been used on the Bakken and Dakota Access pipeline before. It might seem a little weird — most of the time you think of eminent domain (if you think about it at all) as something public, like a road or a bridge. A privately owned pipeline using it feels weird.

And those who feel this way are not alone. Backlash has led to proposed laws and litigation in multiple states.

Proponents of the pipeline hold that, once completed, it’ll help fuel more than 7 million homes and it will create jobs.

It's not clear whether the nuns' efforts will have an effect, but you've got to hand it to them — it's an audacious move.

In building their new chapel, these nuns have made their message crystal clear: If the pipeline really does want this land, they're going to have to fight for it.

via FIRST

FIRST students compete in a robotics challenge.

True

Societies all over the world face an ever-growing list of complex issues that require informed solutions. Whether it’s addressing infectious diseases, the effects of climate change, supply chain issues or resource scarcity, the world has an immediate need for problem-solvers with science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills.

Here in the United States, we’re experiencing a shortage of much-needed STEM workers, and forward-thinking organizations are stepping up to tap into America’s youth to fill the void. As the leading youth-serving nonprofit advancing STEM education, FIRST is an important player in this arena, and its mission is to inspire young people aged 4 to 18 to become technology leaders and innovators capable of addressing the world’s pressing needs.

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Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Marlon Brando on "The Dick Cavett Show" in 1973.

Marlon Brando made one of the biggest Hollywood comebacks in 1972 after playing the iconic role of Vito Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather.” The venerable actor's career had been on a decline for years after a series of flops and increasingly unruly behavior on set.

Brando was a shoo-in for Best Actor at the 1973 Academy Awards, so the actor decided to use the opportunity to make an important point about Native American representation in Hollywood.

Instead of attending the ceremony, he sent Sacheen Littlefeather, a Yaqui and Apache actress and activist, dressed in traditional clothing, to talk about the injustices faced by Native Americans.

She explained that Brando "very regretfully cannot accept this generous award, the reasons for this being … the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry and on television in movie reruns, and also with recent happenings at Wounded Knee."

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The marital bed is a symbol of the intimacy shared between people who’ve decided to be together 'til death they do part. When couples sleep together it’s an expression of their closeness and how they care for one another when they are most vulnerable.

However, for some couples, the marital bed can be a warzone. Throughout the night couples can endure snoring, sleep apnea, the ongoing battle for sheets or circadian rhythms that never seem to sync. If one person likes to fall asleep with the TV on while the other reads a book, it can be impossible to come to an agreement on a good-night routine.

Last week on TODAY, host Carson Daly reminded viewers that he and his wife Siri, a TODAY Food contributor, had a sleep divorce while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

“I was served my sleep-divorce papers a few years ago,” he explained on TODAY. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to us. We both, admittedly, slept better apart.”

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