I'm Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.
El Papa, All the Time
Pope Francis will be in the U.S. today through Sunday. In that time he will address Congress and the U.N., visit a prison and canonize Junipero Serra. He'll also see the nation's Roman Catholic Church struggling with how to reconcile doctrine with modern life, to emerge from child sex abuse scandals, and to bring a growing immigrant population into the flock. Perhaps the biggest key to the future? Young Latinos. See our full report on the papal visit, including his origins, his schedule and more.
First came the Greek debt crisis. Now, a huge influx of refugees and migrants from Syria and elsewhere. Can the European Union stay united? Leaders are planning an emergency summit Wednesday to get on the same page on how to deal with would-be immigrants. For now, the issue has mostly exposed deep divisions among the union's 28 nations.
Meet Bryce and Bruce. Bryce Runyan is a gentlemanly cowboy on the rodeo circuit. Bruce is a shy steed, too tame to make it as a bucking bronco. How they came together to compete in calf-roping competitions isn’t just a story about a man and his horse -- it's about teamwork, and destiny.
The Coming Battle for L.A. Students
Are charter schools the solution to what ails the public education system? You can bet there will be much debate about the independently run, publicly financed, mostly nonunion schools in the months ahead. A 44-page memo obtained by The Times outlines a proposal by the Broad Foundation and others to place half of Los Angeles students in charter schools over the next eight years. Some district officials and L.A. Unified employee unions are already pushing back.
Divorce Case for the Ages
Dr. Mimi C. Lee and Stephen E. Findley's marriage ended in divorce in April. But they are still fighting over whether Lee can attempt to have a child with frozen embryos the couple made after she was diagnosed with cancer. How the judge rules in the coming weeks could set a legal precedent. "These are embryos that will potentially live lives. It is not like you are bartering over the furniture in your house," one expert says.
-- How the new King hospital in Willowbrook hopes to dispel the "Killer King" image of its predecessor.
-- The LAPD gets $1 million for body cameras from the U.S. Department of Justice.
-- L.A. could impose new rules for pot shops paying city taxes.
-- A 78-year-old Costco shopper was punched in a fight over free Nutella waffle samples in Burbank.
-- Vladimir Putin tells Benjamin Netanyahu that the Russian buildup in Syria is no threat to Israel.
-- Burkina Faso coup leader faces military pressure to step down.
-- Chinese students headed to U.S. colleges cram in prep courses -- on Chinese cooking.
-- Budget standoff puts Nancy Pelosi back in the driver's seat.
-- How much do American kids love apples? They account for 29% of fruit consumed each day.
-- Chinese government censorship is costing U.S. tech companies billions of dollars in revenue.
-- How you can look up average prices for common medical procedures and quality scores for providers in California.
-- The federal government paid $51 million in subsidies for "clean" VW vehicles, according to a Times analysis.
-- Where is the cheapest pizza near you?
-- Columnist Bill Dwyre: The concussion story in the NFL seems to have been lost in the shuffle.
-- NFL rookie David Johnson is already a Hall of Famer, or at least his jersey is.
-- Which Lakers will develop into "core players"?
-- Why the Emmys saw a 24% audience drop, even as they honored a diverse set of winners.
-- TV review: Sex and drugs and "The Muppets."
-- Original "Scream Queen" Jamie Lee Curtis reanimates her horror roots.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, on coauthoring a novel about Sherlock Holmes' brother and its connection to Trinidad. (Paste)
-- Doonesbury is not a fan of the writing in ABC's "World News Tonight With David Muir." (Adweek)
-- A colorful clerk who worked at a Boston newsstand for decades has died. (Boston Globe)
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
The drought has inspired homeowners to tear out their lawns. And now, it has inspired artists to create a spiraling labyrinth outside Glendale City Hall. The entirely dry installation "Water Finds a Way" consists of a pathway that leads visitors toward what appears to be a fountain filled with gravel. At the center is a small blue dome representing water. The goal: a meditative, mindful experience.
Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.