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After two days of silence and a barrage of criticism for failing to address the latest clergy sex abuse scandal in the United States, Pope Francis has spoken.

"The Holy See condemns unequivocally the sexual abuse of minors," said a statement issued by the Vatican on Thursday.

"Regarding the report made public in Pennsylvania this week, there are two words that can express the feelings faced with these horrible crimes: shame and sorrow," Vatican spokesman Greg Burke wrote.

Senate Democrats threatened to sue the National Archives to obtain documents from Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's career as a White House official during President George W. Bush's administration.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., told reporters Thursday that Democrats will file a lawsuit if the National Archives does not respond to their Freedom of Information Act request. The suit is a last-ditch effort to obtain the documents ahead of confirmation hearings set begin Sept. 4.

Even in a strong economy, many Americans live paycheck to paycheck. Forty percent don't have $400 to cover an emergency expense, such as a car repair. And many working-class people turn to payday loans or other costly ways to borrow money. But more companies are stepping in to help their workers with a much cheaper way to get some emergency cash.

Startup companies that offer better options for workers are partnering with all kinds of businesses — from giants like Walmart to little fried chicken restaurants.

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Dr. Jodi Jackson has worked for years to address infant mortality in Kansas. Often, that means she is treating newborns in a high-tech neonatal intensive care unit with sophisticated equipment whirring and beeping. That is exactly the wrong place for an infant like Lili.

Lili's mother, Victoria, used heroin for the first two-thirds of her pregnancy and hated herself for it. (NPR is using her first name only, because she has used illegal drugs.)

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Anyone with even a glancing exposure to Nick Hornby's work will not be surprised to learn that the movie adapted from Juliet, Naked, his 2009 novel, turns on pop-music fandom. What's refreshing is that the fanboy is not the main character. What's very nearly shocking is that the central figure is a woman, one of those mysterious creatures who usually exist in Hornby's books as shadowy they do in Bob Dylan ballads.

After four consecutive movies together, director Peter Berg and star Mark Wahlberg want to make honest men of one another and turn their fruitful partnership into a proper franchise. The violent, opaque, tonally scrambled, but— surprisingly! — not-idea-starved action thriller Mile 22 is fully declassified in its bid for sequeldom.

We the Animals, Jeremiah Zagar's fever-dream of a movie, gets underway on a hot summer afternoon in upstate New York, with three shirtless, preteen boys running wild, the way kids do.

The youngest, Jonah (Evan Rosado), reads from a secret journal he scribbles at night, about wanting more: more noise, more muscles, more time with brothers Manny (Isaiah Kristian) and Joel (Josiah Gabriel).

Marguerite waits in a large room for news of her husband. It is the spring of 1945 in Nazi-occupied Paris, and Germany's power is slipping, yet the S.S.'s grip over her home is only becoming bloodier. Marguerite is part of the Resistance, as was her husband, Robert, which is why the Gestapo now has him imprisoned. As she waits for her appointment, she sees a young woman exit from hers — makeup strewn, dress disfigured. She's clearly been violated. But Marguerite doesn't run. She confronts the officer in charge for answers to her husband's capture ...

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first identical alternative to the EpiPen, which is widely used to save children and adults suffering from dangerous allergic reactions.

The FDA Thursday authorized Teva Pharmaceuticals USA to sell generic versions of the EpiPen and EpiPen Jr for adults and children who weigh more than 33 pounds.

Just the mention of Aretha Franklin's name conjures up the memory of her undeniable voice. And with a career spanning more than five decades, touching gospel, R&B and pop, Franklin has earned her place in the history books and in the hearts of music fans.

Though the Detroit-raised powerhouse is known for chart-topping hits like "Respect," "Think" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman," true fans know there's just as much beauty in the Franklin songs with a couple of fewer spins in the jukebox.

As students prepare to go back to school, more and more parents are thinking about school safety. A recent poll found 34 percent of parents fear for their child's physical safety at school. That's almost triple the number of parents from 2013.

A 45-year-old Iraqi national who was granted refugee status in the U.S. is accused of having fought for ISIS and al-Qaida and is now facing extradition to Iraq on a murder charge.

The FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force arrested Omar Ameen at his home in Sacramento on Wednesday. Ameen is charged in the 2014 death of an Iraqi police officer in his hometown, Rawah, just after it fell to the Islamic State.

A large-scale drug overdose rocked New Haven, Connecticut, Thursday — but from a drug you might not think of: synthetic marijuana, or K2. It’s also known as spice or AK-47. Dozens of people in and around a large park area in the city’s downtown experienced increased heart rates, vomiting and more. Some were unconscious.

Updated at 8:13 p.m. ET

The U.S. government says the operators of a station that has been called the "flagship" radio outlet for conspiracy theorist Alex Jones must pay a $15,000 FCC penalty for broadcasting without a license. The station's operators have rejected the demand and accuse the Federal Communications Commission of "trying to run a bluff."

Aretha Franklin died Thursday the age of 76 after a battle with pancreatic cancer. The undisputed “Queen of Soul” sang with matchless style on classics like “Think,” “I Say a Little Prayer” and her signature song, “Respect.”

Aretha Franklin was more than a woman, more than a diva and more than an entertainer. Aretha Franklin was an American institution. Aretha Franklin died Thursday in her home city of Detroit after battling pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type. Her death was confirmed by her publicist, Gwendolyn Quinn. She was 76.

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This morning, we are remembering one of the greatest singers of all time. Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul has died at her home in Detroit.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "I NEVER LOVED A MAN THE WAY I LOVE YOU")

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We knew her as the Queen of Soul because that's what Aretha Franklin's music did. It spoke to the soul.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "RESPECT")

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We are heartbroken to report this morning that the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin has died at the age of 76 years old. Ann Powers is with me now. She's NPR's music critic and correspondent. Good morning, Ann.

ANN POWERS, BYLINE: Good morning.

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We are sad to report this morning that the Queen of Soul has died. Aretha Franklin was 76 and had pancreatic cancer. Let's look back now with NPR's Ted Robbins.

After working at a call center for two decades, Linda Bradley's job came to an end about a year and a half ago. Since her layoff, she has combed online job sites every day looking for work — without much luck.

Bradley, who is 45 and lives near Columbus, Ohio, began suspecting age discrimination after someone at her union mentioned how recruiters often target online ads at younger candidates. "I thought to myself, 'Oh, that's why I wasn't seeing some of the ads that my daughter has seen on her Facebook,' " she says.

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