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CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Mon 27 Jul 2015, 5:46 pm


Baphomet Statue Unveiled in Detroit to Shouts of ‘Hail Satan,’ Satanist Men Kissing
July 27, 2015 | Filed under: Life & Society,Top Stories | By: Heather Clark 
 5142 18  7 5228
SatanDETROIT — At least 100 people attended the unveiling of a Satanic statue depicting Baphomet being flanked by children on Saturday—a statue that was originally intended to be placed at the Oklahoma state capitol and now may be the subject of an effort to erect it next to a Ten Commandments monument in Arkansas.
As previously reported, the New York-based Satanic Temple had scheduled the unveiling for July 25th in Detroit, Michigan. The group says that it chose Detroit because it has a “good community” of followers, with over 200 members, billing the event as “a night of chaos, noise, and debauchery.”
“Come dance with the Devil and experience history in the making,” its invitation read.
But a group of pastors decided to rally against the event, and also contacted the owner of the event venue, Bert’s Warehouse, to request that the Baphomet unveiling be canceled. Owner Bert Dearing told the Associated Press that when he realized who had booked the event and what his facility would be used for, he gave the Satanic Temple their money back.
Additionally, due to opposition, the Satanic Temple moved the event to secret venue in the city and ticketed attendance to keep opponents out. On Saturday, some attendees wore black or donned devil’s horns as they stood outside waiting to enter a warehouse in downtown Detroit.
However, according to reports, once attendees entered the building, they were sent to a second location—just to throw off opponents as to the event’s whereabouts.
But some still found the venue and protested against the event as they drove by. Online video also captured the unveiling, which took place at approximately 11:30 p.m. Attendees shouted “Hail Satan” as two shirtless men pulled off the cloth that covered the Baphomet and then embraced and kissed each other in front of the statue.
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In the meantime, approximately 50 people stood outside of the original venue, Bert’s Warehouse, to pray against Satanism in Detroit.

“We’re fighting for the soul of America. We’re fighting for the soul of the City of Detroit,” David Bullock, pastor of Greater St. Matthew Baptist Church in Highland Park, told those gathered. “The last thing we should do in Detroit is have a welcome party for the Devil.”
“Satan has no place in this city, or any other city,” James Bluford of Rochester Hills likewise prayed out as attendees joined together to pray as the event took place.
As previously reported, the Satanic Temple had raised funds in 2013 to have the statue created in its effort to make a statement about the Ten Commandments monument at the Oklahoma state capitol, and sought to have the Baphomet monument placed next to the Ten Commandments display.
It issued a news release about its intentions following the filing of a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which asserted that the presence of the Ten Commandments display on government property violated the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution. The Satanic Temple said that it offered to to donate a statue of Baphomet to be placed near the Ten Commandments display in order to “appease the ACLU’s concerns.”
“The statue will serve as a beacon calling for compassion and empathy among all living creatures,” spokesperson Lucien Greaves explained in his application to the Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission. “The statue will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation.”
Last May, it was announced that the statue was nearing completion, which features the goat-headed figure Baphomet making the sign for the occult as he sits upon a throne with a pentagram overhead. Children fixate their eyes upon him on both sides.
In September, Seventh District Court Judge Thomas Prince concluded that the Ten Commandments monument serves a historical purpose and is not solely the presentment of a religious message as it sits on a plot of land that contains 51 other expressive monuments.
But the case was then appealed to the Oklahoma Supreme Court, which ruled last month that the monument violates the state Constitution’s prohibition on using government property to support a religion. The case is now on appeal.
Although the Oklahoma decision consequently resulted in the group nixing its plans to place the monument next to the Ten Commandments display, the Satanic Temple now says that it will seek to erect the monument adjacent to a similar Decalogue display in Arkansas.
The Satanic Temple asserts that they are neither Devil worshipers or atheists.
“We consider ourselves non-theistic Satanists,” Detroit spokesperson Jex Blackmore told the Metro Times. “Just as much as we get people who think that we’re into the biblical concept of Satan, we get people who think that we’re just posing as Satanists, and not truly Satanists or whatever you would say. Non-theistic Satanism is part of modern Satanism.”
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Sat 25 Jul 2015, 10:22 am

Christian charity backs calls to ban smacking
Fri 24 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
The Christian charity Family Matters Institute has told Premier it would support a change in the law to make smacking children at home illegal.

CEO Chris Muwanguzi said he backed a called from the United Nations to ban hitting children in all circumstances.
The UN Human Rights Committee has published a wide-ranging assessment of legal and cultural issues in the UK.
It raised concerns that corporal punishment is not fully outlawed.
"The State party should take practical steps, including through legislative measures where appropriate, to put an end to corporal punishment in all settings, including the home, throughout (the) United Kingdom," it said.
"It should encourage non-violent forms of discipline as alternatives to corporal punishment, and conduct public information campaigns to raise awareness about its harmful effects."
Currently parents are not explicitly banned from striking their children. The law allows for "reasonable chastisement" to control a child's behaviour, but parents can be prosecuted if their actions result in injuries such as bruises, cuts or scratches.
Mr Muwanguzi said: "Some children, yes there's an issue, parents struggle, but it's not necessarily important to go straight to smacking".
He said there were ten steps parents should go through before considering smacking.
"Time out is one of them, there's something called 1,2,3 magic, where you talk to you child about taking away something is good that they like.
"Some children are bored and they choose to get into aggressive behaviour and so are we letting them out often? Are we taking them to the park? Are we giving them other things to get involved in?"
A Government spokeswoman said: "Our policy on smacking is clear. We do not condone violence towards children.
"However, we do not wish to criminalise parents for issuing a mild smack."
Chris Muwanguzi speaking to Antony Bushfield on Premier's News Hour:

Why I've used busking to share the love of Jesus
By: Peter Nevland | Jul 2015
On National Busking Day, Peter Nevland shares lessons from a busk-off with an atheist.

"I don't need no God…" Thom, "The World Poet", shouted.
I smiled, standing on a street corner in Austin, Texas on a sweaty summer night. 
I’d been busking in the hope of drawing people closer to Jesus. But I'd just lost my voice! Now my atheist poet friend, Thom was helping me out by anti-evangelizing.  “Perfect,” I thought, smiling more.
I chugged a water bottle and downed pizza, my vocal capabilities revived. Once Thom's poem concluded, I launched into "Funk Infection", another of my "Spoken Groove" pieces. It starts with scatting. Then comes lots of funky white boy dancing. Pretty soon people were clapping their hands with the chorus, blissfully shouting "get down with the funky sound!" The second verse happened to compare King David's dance moves to James Brown's...
Thom seized on the reference and fired off an anti-Bible rant for his next piece. 
On we went, trading poems into the night. Me, the Christian. He, the atheist. I never preached. I just offered stories of hope and silly comedy. He denounced all religion at every opportunity.
We finished. The crowd applauded. Several thanked me. One man asked how I felt hearing howitzers launched at God.
"Shoot, I'm so glad he saved me when my voice went out," I grinned.
"Yeah, but didn't you want to shoot something back?"
"Didn't need to. Joy is way more attractive than invective. When they're side by side, it's easy to see the difference.” 
"I like that," he smiled.
"Besides," I continued.  "If Jesus really is the Truth, I don't have to worry about proving it. That's all on Him."
He grinned wider. We talked more. No conversion. But a big dose of love received, instead of rejected.
It’s sad seeing truth hurled like stones at passersby
Before Thom left, I hugged him, thanking him for performing, and rescuing me. He encouraged me back, loving my daring to perform poetry on the street corner with no stage or promotion. That was more than a decade ago. We're still friends. 

So often Christians reduce their busking to street preaching, or an obvious evangelistic message. It’s sad seeing truth hurled like stones at passersby. What about the truth that God meets us with mercy in our most broken state? What about the Messiah having ‘more joy than all His companions?’ What about the time when He washed the disciples feet, just because they were dirty? 
See for yourself. I challenge you to find the people in the Bible that Jesus preached angrily at. I see way more compassion than correction. The only people who got the fire were religious leaders who thought they were more right than anyone else. 
I've busked on the streets of Austin, New York City, Edinburgh, lots of English streets...  I’ve prayed for witches, agnostics, atheists and Christians (backslidden, nominal and passionate). I may have been mocked for my crazy, funky white boy dancing. But I’ve never been mocked for loving Jesus.
Real busking is entertainment that people like. And everyone loves being served and encouraged, whether they believe they need a God, or not.
Peter Nevland is a poet and performer SpokenGroove.com

Channel Four, John Humphreys and the new thought police
By: David Robertson | Jul 2015
Recent interviews with Tim Farron demonstrate how 'intolerant, authoritarian and anti-Christian' British society is becoming, says David Robertson

Did you hear that amazing interview that John Humphreys did on the Today programme? The one where he badgered Nick Clegg, the former Liberal Democrat leader, about the impact his atheism would have on his decision-making? 
No…you missed it?
Well, what about the extraordinary interview with the former Lib Dem leader on Channel 4 where he was challenged repeatedly about his personal moral views and the fact that he had boasted of having 'no more than 30 notches' on his bed?
You missed that one as well? 
Well so did all of us. Because they don’t exist. No reporter or news programme would ask questions based on such premises. Except when it comes to the crazy idea that a self-describing Evangelical Christian could actually become a leader of a mainstream political party. Then all the gloves are off.
Last week, Channel Four News presenter Cathy Newman asked the new Liberal Democrat leader, Tim Farron, three times whether he thought gay sex was a sin.  John Humphreys on the Today programme also repeatedly badgered the leader on whether he asks God for advice when making big decisions.  
What’s wrong with these approaches? Aren't journalists just doing their job in asking the questions their audiences want answered? 
Lets begin with Mr Humphreys. He was asking, as he well knew, a loaded question. Media commentators, comedians and politicians are all too aware of George Bush’s alleged faux pas claiming that God told him to invade Iraq and Alastair Campbell’s terse response when asked if Tony Blair and George Bush prayed together - ‘we don’t do God’.
Asking Tim Farron whether he asked God for advice was a not so subtle way of mocking his faith. The question would have been more honestly phrased, 'are you a religious nutter who speaks to an invisible man in the sky, rather than rely on the common sense and knowledge that all really intelligent [ie non-religious] people have?’
The problem is that John Humphreys never asks other politicians about how their beliefs affect their decision-making.
Why should it be considered disturbing that a Christian prays for wisdom and guidance to God? Is it not more disturbing that an atheist politician thinks that all wisdom lies within themselves, so they do not need any outside guidance?
And what about asking about your views about sin? 
In the context of modern society it is of course the ultimate sin, the blasphemy against the Holy State, to even question whether any sexual activity, but especially homosexuality, can be considered sinful.
The question was not asked to elicit information. It was asked to accuse and mock. If you have doubts that this was the intention, just have a glance into the murky world of the new atheist/secularist websites where this particular interview has been posted repeatedly, together with the subsequent ignorant and arrogant mocking comments.
What these interviews demonstrate is how intolerant, authoritarian and anti-Christian our society is becoming – at least at its elite levels. 
The danger is that Christian politicians and leaders will be pressured into compromise, and that the mockery narrative will be the background against which many ordinary Christians live their lives.
We need the church to pray for those who are in authority, recognising them as the servants of God. We need Christian leaders who will be prophetic, proclaiming and living the Word of God in a culture that despises it. Only then will we see the world turned upside down!  

Verdict date set for Sudanese pastors
Fri 24 Jul 2015
By Aaron James
A Christian advocacy charity has said two South Sudanese facing the death penalty in Sudan will receive a judge's verdict on August 5th.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide also confirmed that the defence team for Revd Yat Michael and Revd Peter Reith has given the judge a final closing written statement. It challenged the prosecution's evidence, and asked the court to uphold the right to a free trial, which is in the Sudanese constitution.
It also highlighted the fact the pastors were both held without being allowed to communicate to others, something which should not normally happen, the confiscation of their laptops and electronic devices, and the way in which the prosecution built up its case against the pastors.
The Sudanese state has charged Revd Yat Michael and Revd Peter Reith with at least six offences, including undermining the Sudanese constitution and espionage. Both crimes can carry the death penalty.
The two pastors deny all the charges against them, and have been detained since Dcember 2014 and January 2015 respectively.
They were moved to a maximum security prison in June, and denied access to their lawyers and family despite appealing numerous times.
Andy Dipper, Chief Operating Officer at Christian Solidarity Worldwide, said: "We renew our calls for the unwarranted and extreme charges against Revd Yat Michael and Revd Peter Reith to be dropped and for them to be released unconditionally and without further delay.
"That Sudan continues to prosecute these men, and without even allowing them free access to their legal team, makes a mockery of the judicial process and is a clear violation of fair trial principles, as articulated in Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (ACHPR) and Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Sudan is a party.
"In addition, the ongoing denial of family visits compounds the mental and emotional distress of the men and their families.
"We urge the African Union and the wider international community, to challenge Sudan on its treatment of the pastors and its failure to protect and promote freedom of religion or belief and the right to a fair trial."
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Fri 24 Jul 2015, 11:39 am

Vicar 'on the run' after being convicted of theft
Thu 23 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
A man hunt has been launched for a former vicar from Barnsley who disappeared from court after he was found guilty of stealing £24,000 in church fees.
Revd Simon Reynolds, 50, worked at All Saint's church in Darton but now lives in Surrey.
He was convicted of four offences by a jury at Sheffield Crown Court earlier but didn't return for the verdict.
South Yorkshire Police said: "A warrant has been issued for his arrest and officers are now actively searching for Reynolds."
Sheffield Crown Court was told that he should have given the money to the diocese and the parochial church council.
READ MORE

Secularists challenged to start own foodbank after Christian only job ad complaint
Thu 23 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
The Free Church of Scotland Moderator has said the Scottish Secularist Society should set up its own foodbank after it complained about a 'Christian only' job advert for the Trussell Trust.
Dundee Foodbank, which is affiliated to the Christian charity, said the position was only available to "a committed Christian and church member".
Revd David Robertson described the SSS' complaint as "petty and vindictive".
He said: "If the Scottish Secular Society object to Christians running food banks they are perfectly free to start one of their own.
"But this of course they refuse to do preferring instead to go to the media and complain.
"This seems to be the pattern - Christians set up a trust to feed the poor in accordance with what our faith instructs us to do, and the militant secularists attack the Christians for daring to express our faith in this practical way.
"It is petty and vindictive and indicates precisely the difference between the Christian churches, who act upon their faith, and the secular faith, which spends all its time attacking others."
READ MORE

Church leaders face 'significant strain' on marriages
Fri 24 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
More than half of church leaders say their role places a 'significant strain' on their marriages, according to a new survey.
The report, based on the responses of 200 vicars, pastors, ministers and leaders from across the UK, found 65% had problems in their relationship caused by the job.
Oasis UK, which carried out the research, said it exposed the enormous pressures faced by church leaders, the extent to which they are overworked, and how many are regularly subjected to verbal abuse from members of their congregation.
According to the research, 71% of church leaders find their role either 'quite stressful' or 'very stressful'.
Sixty-four percent feel incredibly pushed for time and struggle to get everything done, a figure that rises to 73% amongst female respondents.
Church leaders also fear that their congregations are almost oblivious to their struggles, with 43% reporting that their church members have little or no understanding of the pressures they are under.
But despite the stress and pressures, 52% described their ministry as 'very rewarding' with a further 34% thinking it 'quite rewarding.'
Church leaders estimate that on average 62% of the feedback they receive from the congregation is positive and encouraging, compared to just 38% that is negative or critical.
READ MORE

83% of Christian teenagers think sex is for marriage
Fri 24 Jul 2015
By Aaron James
The vast majority of churchgoing young people hold onto the traditional Christian value that sex should be saved for marriage.

Despite general attitudes suggesting teenagers are becoming more sexualised, eight out of ten churchgoers hold the belief.
 
New research published by Premier Youthwork Magazine also found a more liberal stance on homosexuality, with only 36% believing it to be a sin.

Writing in this month's edition Rachel Gardner, founder of the Romance Academy, expressed her suprise in the findings on sex. She said: "Let's not pass over how radical this is.
 
"We're hearing how peer-on-peer sexual violence is more widespread that we think and being a teen virgin denotes that something is profoundly wrong with you.
 
"So to say that you think sex is best understood and expressed in marriage, and then to try and live out the implications of this is to go against the tsunami of peer opinion and affirmation; it just doesn't easily happen, unless young people involved have a grabbed a greater vision than the one on offer."
READ MORE


Bishop of London: "The Christian voice in cyber space is too often absent"
Thu 23 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
The Bishop of London has told supporters of Premier that the Christian message needs to find a louder voice on the internet and on social media.
Rt Revd Richard Chartres was speaking to the more than 2,000 specially invited guests at St Paul's Cathedral who were celebating Premier Christian Radio's 20th anniversary.
He explained how, often the Christian voice in Britain seems faint and does not always reflect contemporary reality.
"The Christian voice in cyber space is too often absent, leaving far too much room for shrill and judgemental voices," he said.
"It's a cliché to say, but true, that the young are communicating in a different way and the allocation of Christian effort and resources reflects a communications culture of a previous age."
Broadcast live on Premier Christian Radio and via a webcast, the Bishop went on to say that Christianity is not in decline worldwide or in London but that it sometimes seemed to lack confidence.
"Change is indeed possible and Premier has led the way in imagining new ways, appropriate to our time, of singing the Lord's song in the spirit of the word made flesh."
The Bishop of London was joined at the event by the Riding Lights Theatre Company, worship leader Graham Kendrick and the All Souls Orchastra.

Listen to Bishop Richard's sermon here:
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

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What? Evangelicals Come Against Franklin Graham's Views on Islam
2:00PM EDT 7/22/2015    JENNIFER LECLAIRE
Franklin Graham is receiving pushback for the comments he made about Muslim immigrants. (YouTube)
Connect with the newsmakers and storytellers who are impacting our world. Listen to Charisma Connection at charismapodcastnetwork.com.

After five members of our military were killed in cold blood—and two others wounded—on our own soil in an act of domestic terrorism in Chattanooga, evangelist Franklin Graham dared to say what many in America were thinking:
"We are under attack by Muslims at home and abroad. We should stop all immigration of Muslims to the U.S. until this threat with Islam has been settled. Every Muslim who comes into this country has the potential to be radicalized—and they do their killing to honor their religion and Muhammad," Graham said.
"During World War II, we didn't allow Japanese to immigrate to America, nor did we allow Germans. Why are we allowing Muslims now? Do you agree? Let your Congressman know that we've got to put a stop to this and close the floodgates. Pray for the men and women who serve this nation in uniform, that God would protect them."
The elder Graham stayed out of politics, but the once-prodigal son is known for his bold commentary. Some of his fellow evangelicals are up in arms over these comments from Billy Graham's son.
"Harsh" and "unhelpful" were the words Carl Medearis, an international expert in Arab-American and Muslim-Christian relations, used to describe Graham's words.
Meanwhile, Helen Lee, associate editor at InterVarsity Press, had one question for him: "This is Christian witness?" Lee's colleague, vice president and director of Campus Engagement for InterVarsity USA Greg Jao, said he "strongly" rejects Graham's idea.
And Brian Zahnd, an author and pastor of Word Life Church, said Graham's remarks were nothing short of "xenophobia." Even Chick-fil-A's general manager for leadership development, Tim Sweetman, came against Graham, saying his remarks were "despicable" and the opposite of Christian love and American freedom.
"Franklin Graham said really awful things about Muslims," Lynne Hybels, of Willow Creek Community Church, tweeted. "If he knew the Muslim men and women I know, he would never say such things."
Yet, many Americans are likely to agree with Graham. Americans view Islam as a threat to their own nation's religious liberty almost as strongly as they consider it a danger to religious freedom internationally, new research shows.
Although most persecution occurs overseas, 39 percent of American adults say Islam threatens religious freedom in the United States—almost as many as the 40 percent who see Islam as a global threat, a survey by Nashville-based LifeWay Research finds.
"Most recent headlines regarding Islam don't paint a picture of religious freedom—so we should not be surprised by the strong minority that considers Islam a threat to religious freedom," said Ed Stetzer, executive director of LifeWay Research.
The Charisma Podcast Network is now live. Featuring a variety of programs including news, leadership, inspiring stories, women's topics, sports, and even more.
Subscribe now for free!

Did you like this article? You'll enjoy Jennifer LeClaire's book, The Spiritual Warrior's Guide to Defeating Jezebel
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Post  Admin on Thu 23 Jul 2015, 11:43 am

Half of Christian teenagers don't read Bible more than once a month
Wed 22 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
Fifty per cent of young people who identify as Christians don't read their Bible more than once a month.

New research published by Premier Youthwork Magazine has found just one in three read it a couple of times a week or more.
What was also revealed was that teenagers pray far more regularly than they read the Bible.
Writing in this month's edition, London youth worker Mark Walley looked at other stats which show young people overwhelming see having a regular experience of God an important part of their faith.
He wrote: "When held together with the fact that young people expressed a strong desire to experience God in their churches, something seems amiss.
"Because the thing is, there is a link between the discipline of Bible reading and the experience of God. One of the main day to day ways you experience God is through reading the Bible."

He suggests youth workers need to rethink how they're encouraging their young people to read the Bible.

Speaking to Premier, he said: "One thing to avoid is the sense of guilt. It's so easy to lay on young people 'Why aren't you reading your Bible? You should do it more often. It's like brushing your teeth you should do it if you like it or not'.
"That's not the Christian message. The Christian message is 'Isn't this a glorious thing that we can do?'. That every day and every time we need to we can pick up our Bible and hear God speaking to us."
Listen to Mark Walley speaking to Premier's Marcus Jones here:

Justin Welby meets with RCCG leaders
Wed 22 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
The Archbishop of Canterbury has met and prayed with the leaders of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, widely seen as the fast growing Church in the UK.

Most Revd Justin Welby welcomed the General Overseer of RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, to Lambeth Palace today for what was described as "a morning of prayer and conversation".
Pastor Adeboye is visiting the UK from Nigeria and his Chief Overseer of the RCCG in the UK Pastor Agu Irukwu also attended the meeting.
Lambeth Palace

Lambeth Palace said the group discussed the possibility of collaboration between the Anglican and RCCG churches nationally and internationally.
Afterwards Archbishop Justin and Pastor Adeboye spoke privately and prayed together.
During the visit he was shown a selection of precious items from the Lambeth Palace Library, including works relating to the first black Anglican bishop, Samuel Ajayi Crowther.
In October last year Archbishop Justin was invited to address 40,000 people at the RCCG's Festival of Light in London, where he called for Christians of different denominations to be reconciled in Christ and to be reconcilers in their communities and nations.

Top woman bishop consecrated
Wed 22 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
The Church of England's most senior woman bishop has been consecrated.

Venerable Rachel Treweek was appointed the new Bishop of Gloucester and will be the first woman to take a seat in the House of Lords.
Revd Canon Dame Sarah Mullally was also consecrated as the Bishop of Crediton during the service at Canterbury Cathedral.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Most Revd Justin Welby, led the service whilst the 22-strong Canterbury Cathedral Girls' Choir led the singing.
Former speech and language therapist Ms Treweek, who was Archdeacon of Hackney, officially becomes the Church's first female diocesan bishop.
The 52-year-old, who describes herself in her Twitter profile as "more vulnerable than venerable", is the first woman to run a diocese and is one rank below archbishop.
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Post  Admin on Wed 22 Jul 2015, 9:26 pm

[url=http://www.premier.org.uk/News/World/Asia-Bibi-death-sentence-temporarily-suspended? of daily news email 21july Christian Media]Asia Bibi death sentence temporarily suspended[/url]
Wed 22 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
Pakistan's Supreme Court as has reportedly ordered a temporary stay of execution against Asia Bibi's death sentence.

According to local media outlets, a three-member bench in Lahore has accepted the Christian woman's appeal and has ordered all records pertaining to the case to be presented before it.
In her petition, the 50-year-old woman has claimed that she had not made any blasphemous remarks, and rather residents of her neighbourhood had leveled the blasphemy allegations against her based on a personal feud.
Mother of five children, Asia Bibi has been on death row since November 2010 after being convicted of committing blasphemy during an argument with a Muslim woman over a bowl of water in 2009.
Despite denying the charge, she was arrested and imprisoned before she was sentenced to death a year later.
If the sentence is carried out she'd be the first women to be lawfully killed for blasphemy in Pakistan.
 
Despite widespread calls from the international community for her release, she remains in prison with claims she's suffered abuse by fellow prisoners.

Asia Bibi's family are being supported by the British Pakistani Christian Association.
Ashiq Masih at Geneva Summit 2015
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9Mvpc2SQcI
Ashiq Masih, husband of Asia Bibi, on death row in Pakistan for blasphemy addresses the opening U.N. Session of the 2015 Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy.


Judge: Believing prayer can ward off evil is not a mental health issue
Tue 21 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
A family court judge has said there is "nothing concerning" about the beliefs of a man who believes prayer can ward off evil.

Carol Atkinson's been ruling on a case regarding the care of a baby. The family, who are based in Bexley, London cannot be named.
She claimed police and social workers had raised concerns over the father's views with some claiming they were a "mental health issue". The judge dismissed that opinion, stating: "He (the man) has been brought up by a mother whose religious beliefs might be considered by some to border on 'superstition'.
"However, when you peel it back and give him the opportunity to explain I have found nothing concerning in his views.
"I am quite satisfied that what he was seeking to explain in his police interview and in his evidence before me was a strongly-held belief that something other worldly and possibly disruptive, evil if you like, bringing bad luck could be warded off through prayer. There is nothing unusual in such a belief.
"Many mainstream Christian faiths have their homes blessed by a priest before occupying. Other faiths have prayers written on paper rolled up into a container and nailed above the door to keep their home safe. The crucifix over the entry to the home. The blessing of a baby by a practising Catholic before christening lest anything untoward might happen. Crossing your fingers. In my judgment these are all examples of the same thing."
The case is determining the future of the boy who is approaching his first birthday.
Social services currently has responsibility for his welfare. Judge Atkinson said he had been taken to hospital with a fractured leg when a few weeks old. Social workers had become involved and had asked for a ruling on the cause of the baby's injuries.
The judge said there was a "real possibility" that either the baby's mother or father had "harmed" him, but she said she could not identify one parent as the "sole perpetrator".

Priest 'torture' claims in Eastern Ukraine
Tue 21 Jul 2015
By Desmond Busteed
Concern is growing for over 40 church ministers currently held in captivity in Eastern Ukraine amid reports of torture, according to a Christian charity working in the region.

UK charity Mission Without Borders (MWB) claims seven priests have been murdered since the start of unrest in Donetsk and Luhansk, which evolved into a war between the post-revolutionary Ukrainian government and pro-Russian insurgents in 2014.
"Around 10 churches have been ruined or set fire to because they are only letting the Russian Orthodox Church to be permitted for people to worship there, and other Christian denominations are actually being quite heavily targeted and persecuted," said Carly Jones, national manager, Mission Without Borders.
The charity says the local Christian community has responded by demonstrating increased faith; gathering to worship in neighbours' homes and abandoned buildings.
The UN's latest figures show 1.3 million Ukrainians are internally displaced and more than 5 million people are in need of humanitarian aid.
Mission Without Borders says its locally staffed office in Ukraine has sent several truckloads of aid to communities affected by the conflict in Eastern Ukraine.
The charity has also provided key assistance to Luhansk Regional Hospital, delivering much needed medical beds, mattresses and hygiene items.
MWB is also working in partnership with local churches, government agencies and partner NGOs across Ukraine to help refugees meet their basic needs. The charity says it has also made special provisions for rehabilitation and counselling services for children experiencing trauma.
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Post  Admin on Tue 21 Jul 2015, 3:11 pm


Dr Michael Youssef // Are we living in 'end times'?
Founder and President of Leading the Way, Dr Michael Youssef brings his ministry to more than 190 countries around the world, in 24 languages, every day. He spoke to Inspirational Breakfast about the 'end times': are we witnessing them in the tragedy around us or is it simply a cycle of unrest that has been continuing since Jesus’ prophecy? John Pantry started by asking Michael about our world and the state of faith in our nation.

3.36min Video
Autism doesn't stop me believing in a God I can't see
Alex Lowery was diagnosed with autism at the age of four. Having made remarkable progress, the 21-year-old is now on a mission to help others understand the condition.
Sylvia Lowery remembers the moment she discovered that her four-year-old son had autism.

‘When Alex was diagnosed, all I could see was a black hole. I felt that God was far away from me and wasn’t hearing my prayers.’
As he grew up, Alex’s heightened senses meant that he found the world a ‘really terrifying place’.
‘A lot of things most people wouldn’t find loud, I found to be exceedingly loud,’ he says. ‘Even something as simple as going into a shop was a really scary experience for me because of the music played in the shops, all the people and how crowded it was. The dummies in the shops were scary. The lights were scary. The world was a really terrifying place.’
Now 21-years-old, Alex has made remarkable progress. He recently published his autobiography Thinking Club and regularly speaks to audiences across the UK about his battle with autism.
GROWING UP WITH AUTISM
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Sat 18 Jul 2015, 12:23 pm


Pastors Plan to Protest Unveiling of Satanic Statue in Detroit
DETROIT, Mich. — A group of pastors in Detroit plan to protest the unveiling of a Satanic statue later this month, which was sought to be placed next to a Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the Oklahoma state capitol building.
As previously reported, the New York-based Satanic Temple issued a news release about its intentions in 2013 following the filing of a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which asserted that the presence of the Ten Commandments display on government property violated the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution.
The Satanic Temple said that it offered to to donate a statue of Baphomet to be placed near the Ten Commandments display in order to “appease the ACLU’s concerns.”
“The statue will serve as a beacon calling for compassion and empathy among all living creatures,” spokesperson Lucien Greaves explained in his application to the Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission. “The statue will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation.”
Last May, it was announced that the statue was nearing completion, which features the goat-headed figure Baphomet making the sign for the occult as he sits upon a throne with a pentagram overhead. Children fixate their eyes upon him on both sides.
In September, Seventh District Court Judge Thomas Prince concluded that the Ten Commandments monument serves a historical purpose and is not solely the presentment of a religious message as it sits on a plot of land that contains 51 other expressive monuments.
But the case was then appealed to the Oklahoma Supreme Court, which ruled last week that the monument violates the state Constitution’s prohibition on using government property to support a religion.
Prior to the ruling, the Satanic Temple announced that it would unveil its proposed “homage to Satan” in Detroit. Although the Oklahoma decision consequently resulted in the group nixing its plans to place the monument next to the Ten Commandments display, the unveiling is moving forward. The Satanic Temple now says that it might seek to erect the monument adjacent to a similar Decalogue display in Arkansas.
As the event is scheduled for July 25 at Bert’s Warehouse, a number of pastors in Detroit are rallying together to speak out against the devilish statue.
David Bullock, pastor of Greater St. Matthew Baptist Church, is one of the organizers of a counter event to be held on the same day.
“This is not even a real religion in my estimation,” Bullock told local television station WWJ. “They’re bringing a Baphomet statue to the city of Detroit valorizing, elevating Satan.”
“The last thing we need—in a city where we’re fighting against violence and fighting against economic problems and unemployment and the water crisis—is a statue dedicated to Satan right downtown,” he said.
Bullock invites other Christians to join him for the counter protest. The pastor has also contacted the owners of Bert’s Warehouse to request that the Baphomet event be canceled.
The Satanic Temple likewise raised concerns last December when it was granted permission to erect its “snaketivity scene” near a nativity scene on the Michigan capitol grounds. The statue featured a snake wrapped around a Satanic cross, with the snake offering the book “Revolt of the Angels” as a gift.
According to the Metro Times, while some have thought the Satanic Temple to actually espouse atheism, the group says that characterization is incorrect.
“We consider ourselves non-theistic Satanists,” spokesperson Jex Blackmore told the outlet. “Atheists don’t consider themselves part of a religion. Non-theists have a religion, but without God. That’s the difference.”
“Just as much as we get people who think that we’re into the biblical concept of Satan, we get people who think that we’re just posing as Satanists, and not truly Satanists or whatever you would say. Non-theistic Satanism is part of modern Satanism. It’s a misconception that we fight a lot that we’re trying to dispel.”
MORE http://christiannews.net/2015/06/27/proposed-homage-to-satan-near-ten-commandments-monument-to-be-unveiled/ 


Oklahoma Governor Refuses to Remove Ten Commandments Monument Following Ruling
July 9, 2015 | Filed under: Highlights,Law & Government,Life & Society,Top Stories | By: Heather Clark 
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Oklahoma Capitol Building pdOKLAHOMA CITY — The governor of Oklahoma is standing her ground and refusing to remove a Ten Commandments monument following a ruling by the state Supreme Court declaring that the display must go because it infringed the state Constitution.

Gov. Mary Fallin announced on Tuesday that the monument will stay in place while the state files an appeal in the matter, asserting that “the court God it wrong.”
“The Ten Commandments monument was built to recognize and honor the historical significance of the Commandments in our state’s and nation’s systems of laws,” she wrote in a statement.
“The monument was built and maintained with private dollars. It is virtually identical to a monument on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol which the United States Supreme Court ruled to be permissible,” Fallin continued. “It is a privately funded tribute to historical events, not a taxpayer funded endorsement of any religion, as some have alleged.”
As previously reported, the display had been proposed by Rep. Mike Ritze in 2009, and was soon after approved by the largely Republican-run state legislature. Ritze paid over $1000 for the display, and no taxpayer funds were utilized in its creation.
“[T]he Ten Commandments are an important component of the foundation of the laws and legal system of the United States of America and of the State of Oklahoma,” the 2009 bill authorizing the monument acknowledged. “[T]he courts of the United States of America and of various states frequently cite the Ten Commandments in published decisions, and acknowledgements of the role played by the Ten Commandments in our nation’s heritage are common throughout America.”
In August 2013, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Oklahoma filed suit against the display, asserting that its erection on the grounds of the state capitol building was unconstitutional.
The lead plaintiff was liberal minister Bruce Prescott, the director of Mainstream Oklahoma Baptists. Prescott said that mixing the sacred with the secular in such a manner cheapens the display, and asserted that it violated the Constitution’s Establishment Clause, which says that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion…”
In the meantime, a New York-based Satanist group sought to erect an “homage to Satan” near the monument, and other groups chimed in to seek permission to place statues at the location as well.
But last September, Seventh District Court Judge Thomas Prince concluded that the monument served a historical purpose and not solely the presentment of a religious message as it sits on a plot of land that contains 51 other expressive monuments.
The case was then refiled with the Oklahoma Supreme Court, which ruled 7-2 last week that the monument must be removed because it violates Article 2, Section 5, of the Oklahoma Constitution, which states that property cannot be used to promote a “church denomination or system of religion.”
“No public money or property shall ever be appropriated, applied, donated, or used, directly or indirectly, for the use, benefit, or support of any sect, church, denomination, or system of religion, or for the use, benefit, or support of any priest, preacher, minister, or other religious teacher or dignitary, or sectarian institution as such,” the section reads.
Concurring justices were Chief Justice John F. Reif; Justice Yvonne Kauger; Justice Joseph M. Watt; Justice James R. Winchester; Justice James E. Edmondson; Justice Steve W. Taylor; and Justice Noma D. Gurich. Vice Chief Justice Douglas L. Combs and Justice Tom Colbert dissented.
But Gov. Fallin says that the court got it wrong and is refusing to remove the monument while the state appeals the decision.
“Oklahoma is a state where we respect the rule of law, and we will not ignore the state courts or their decisions,” she wrote in her statement this week. “However, we are also a state with three co-equal branches of government.”
“At this time, Attorney General Scott Pruitt, with my support, has filed a petition requesting a rehearing of the Ten Commandments case. Additionally, our legislature has signaled its support for pursuing changes to our state Constitution that will make it clear the Ten Commandments monument is legally permissible,” Fallin added. “If legislative efforts are successful, the people of Oklahoma will get to vote on the issue.”
The ACLU is now claiming that Fallin could be in contempt of court.
“The Supreme Court did not give any leeway in their opinion. The bipartisan, seven-member majority did not say remove the monument except if you look into your crystal ball and think the law might allow it at some point in the future and go ahead and keep it,” Executive Director Ryan Kiesel told Tulsa World. “The court said remove the monument.”
“Frankly, I would be astonished if we get to a point where the governor outright defies an order of our state’s highest court,” he said. “That said, if she does, there is a word for it. It is called contempt.”
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Post  Admin on Wed 15 Jul 2015, 1:50 pm

Iranian charity praying nuclear deal leads to freedom for Christians
Tue 14 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
A charity which reaches out to Iranian Christians says it's praying and hoping that Iran's nuclear programme deal will allow the West to have more influence on Iran and the right to freedom of worship.

As part of the agreement the country will get rid of 98% of its stockpile of enriched uranium. In turn sanctions imposed by the United States, European Union and United Nations will be lifted allowing Iran to return to the global oil market.
Iranian president Hassan Rouhani said the deal marked "a new chapter" in relations with the world and the Islamic republic.
Speaking in Tehran, Mr Rouhani said: "The sanctions regime was never successful, but at the same time it had affected people's lives."
President Obama gave an address moments after the deal was made. Addressing critics he said: "This deal is not built on trust. It is built on verification."
Revd Lazarus Yeghnazar, President of 222 Ministries said: "Once again Iran and its leadership has been given a unique opportunity.
"Many are apprehensive both Iranians and non for its past track record over three decades.
"I'm praying and hoping they will seize this opportunity....to do something accountably and respectively both for the Iranian citizens and the international community.
"In a pragmatic sense I exercise a cautious optimism and in a spiritual sense I prayerfully look forward, praying for all the leaders in the country.
"All of the Christian leaders around the world are praying for this, that God will soften their hearts...that the Government will have bigger issues to pursue and leave the Christian community alone to worship their God as they want."
Announcing the deal, Federica Mogherini, the European Union's foreign policy chief, appearing on stage in Vienna alongside Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, said: "Today is an historic day.
"We are creating the conditions for building trust. No-one ever thought it would be easy...Despite twists and turns in the talks, hope and determination enabled us to overcome all the difficult moments."
The deal's been labelled a 'bad mistake' by the Israeli Government. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said it would lead to Iran getting a "cash bonanza" which will enable it to "continue to purse aggression and terror in the region and the world".
Listen to Revd Lazarus Yeghnazar speaking to Premier's Antony Bushfield:
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Post  Admin on Tue 14 Jul 2015, 3:39 pm

Fears increase of IS attack on Jerusalem's Christians
Tue 14 Jul 2015
By Antony Bushfield
Christians in Jerusalem are growing increasingly concerned about the threat of Islamic State.

Believers in the Holy Land are worried after a leaflet threatening attacks from Muslim jihadists was handed out in the Israeli capital.
The document has been found in the east of Jerusalem and appears to threaten "revenge" on Christians.
It is signed by a group calling itself "ISIS [Islamic State] Palestine".
"Vengeance" will be brought upon followers of Christ, the leaflet said.
Nashat Filmon, from the Palestinian Bible Society, said the threat was real.
He said: "Everything is expected from ISIS [Islamic State], as we saw in the Middle East many Christians have been killed, been displaced as a result of the presence of ISIS, you know in Mosul more than 150,000 people had to leave this historical Christian place and city and go and be scattered all over.
"So we know that Isis does kill, does threaten and does have an extended hand, I mean this could be very real."
Recent figures suggest there are 12,000 Christian residents in Jerusalem, and many more Christian tourists every year.
It's thought a large number of Palestinians have left the area to go and fight for Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, although there is no way to verify this.
IS has made vocal attacks on the Christian faith in the past, with one its magazines even showing the group's black flag flying above the Vatican.
Nashat Filmon added that he thought Islamic State was active in Jerusalem.
He said: "There have been calls for prayer, there have been calls to stand against these threats and to fight it back by every peaceful means.
"The church is also addressing the issue by encouraging its people to stay strong in the faith and of course to be thankful, to praise God.
"Just around us people have been killed, people have been displaced not far away from us, two hours drive people have been and continue to be killed so we are in a much better position.
"We need to remember God's grace and God's protection, not to take anything for granted but to trust the Lord will keep us safe in these difficult moments."
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Post  Admin on Sat 11 Jul 2015, 5:51 pm

Pope left stony faced over communist crucifix gift from Bolivia's president
Fri 10 Jul 2015
By Desmond Busteed
Images of a bemused looking Pope have been beamed around the globe after Francis was presented with a communist crucifix depicting Jesus nailed to a hammer and sickle by Bolivia's president Evo Morales.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi appears to have tried to avert the gathered media from depicting the incident as a failure in international diplomacy, saying the pope was likely to have uttered "eso no sabía bien" (I didn't know that) in confusion at the origins of the present, and not "eso no está bien" ("this is not right"), as some outlets have reported.
Bolivian officials said the gift was a replica of a crucifix made by the late Father Luis Espinal, who was gunned down by a paramilitary death squad in 1980.
Mr Morales, who once referred to the Catholic faith as his "main enemy," had a tenuous relationship with the Church prior to Pope Francis's arrival.
Despite the awkward encounter in Bolivia, history's first Latin American pope "humbly" begged forgiveness during a meeting with indigenous groups and other activists and in the presence of Bolivia's first-ever indigenous president, Morales.
Francis noted that Latin American church leaders in the past had acknowledged that "grave sins were committed against the native peoples of America in the name of God".
St John Paul II, for his part, apologised to the continent's indigenous for the "pain and suffering" caused during the 500 years of the church's presence in the Americas during a 1992 visit to the Dominican Republic.
But Francis went farther, and said he was doing so with "regret".
"I would also say, and here I wish to be quite clear, as was St John Paul II: I humbly ask forgiveness, not only for the offences of the church herself, but also for crimes committed against the native peoples during the so-called conquest of America," he said to applause from the crowd.
Then deviating from his prepared script, he added: "I also want for us to remember the thousands and thousands of priests who strongly opposed the logic of the sword with the power of the cross. There was sin, and it was plentiful.
"But we never apologised, so I now ask for forgiveness. But where there was sin, and there was plenty of sin, there was also an abundant grace increased by the men who defended indigenous peoples."
Francis' apology was met with wild applause from the indigenous and other grass-roots groups gathered for a world summit of popular movements whose fight against injustice and social inequality has been championed by the pope.
The apology was significant given the controversy that has erupted in the United States over Francis' planned canonisation of the 18th century Spanish priest Junipero Serra, who set up missions across California.
Native Americans contend the priest brutally converted indigenous people to Christianity, wiping out villages in the process, and have opposed his canonisation. The Vatican insists he defended natives from colonial abuses.

Church of England General Synod gets underway in York
Fri 10 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
The Church of England's governing body is set to meet for the final time in its five year cycle.
The General Synod in York will be the last before a new group is elected in later this year.
Top of the agenda will be the subject of how the church handles abuse cases. Members will discuss how the Church can get tougher to stop abuse happening within its parishes.
Synod members will debate potential new powers including introducing checks similar to those for staff working in schools or hospitals.
Also set to be discussed is the environment and the idea of encouraging ministers to train in 'eco-theology'. It comes just weeks after Pope Francis released his encyclical on the issue.
Synod member Jonathan Ford told Premier: "We're going to be giving our backing to withdrawing all our investments in fossil fuels but the other thing is we'll have a huge debate on climate change and we're going to look at ways at how we can help others do this.
"We're fully behind what the Pope is doing and we have a unique opportunity to say more and resource people."
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Post  Admin on Fri 10 Jul 2015, 12:55 pm

Leaked document shows Saudi Arabia asked Vatican for help in bringing down Syrian Government
Thu 09 Jul 2015
By Marcus Jones
A secret document sent by Saudi Arabia to the Vatican, asking for help in bringing down the Syrian Government has been revealed through Wikileaks.

The letter thought to be from the start of the uprisings in 2011 asks for a meeting with the Foreign Minister at the Vatican, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, explaining that Christians in Syria shouldn't fear a change in leadership.
Many Christians in Syria had supported the Assad regime claiming their rights had always been respected and that they received the freedom to worship. Some feared a new government would stop that.
However the letter, attempted to calm those fears.
It said: "We affirm we are friends of the Syrian people and declare our commitment to the rights and freedoms of all the Syrian people of all different backgrounds.
"We will not accept the exclusion or marginalisation of any groups."
The Vatican has consistently called for peaceful negotiations over the future of Syria and spoken out against military action.
Pope Francis held a worldwide day or prayer for peace for the situation.
The letter suggests Saudi Arabia supported the Vatican's stance. It said: "We support a political solution and peaceful transition of power, but that requires placing utmost pressure on the regime to stop the killings and accept that it is impossible to accomplish a military victory.
The Vatican's response to the letter has not been revealed.
Over 200,000 people have been killed since the uprising in 2011. Around eight million have been either internally displaced or have fled to neighbouring countries.

Another Syrian priest kidnapped
Thu 09 Jul 2015
By Aaron James
A Christian anti-persecution charity has called on Christians to pray after the kidnap of another Syrian priest.

Fr Diyaa Aziz, 40, is one of six priests in total known to have been captured in Syria since 2012. The priest is from the predominantly Christian village of Jacoobiya, in the north western province of Idlib.
Aid to the Church in the Need has said the Al-Nusra Front extremist group asked Fr Aziz to meet with its leader, and that when the priest obliged, he was never seen again.
The advocacy group has said the other captured priests are: Archbishops Boulos Yazigi and Youhanna Ibrahim of Aleppo; Fr Paolo Dall'Oglio; Fr Hanna Jallouf, and; Father Jacques Mourad.
The whereabouts and state of health of all the prisoners, including Fr Aziz, are currently unknown.
Two others priests have been killed since 2012: Fr Frans van der Lugt and Fr Hadi Haddad. Fr Lugt was caught in fighting between government and rebel fighters and
Neville Kyrke-Smith, National Director of Aid to the Church in Need UK, said: "We plead for prayers and mercy - for young Fr Aziz, for Fr Jacques Mourad and all the priests and bishops who have been kidnapped and for their people.
"It is as though Daesh (IS) and other fanatical groups want to cut off the heads of the Christian communities to kill the body - the Church - and they should know that this will not work."
"Having been in northern Iraq recently and knowing the terror that Christian communities and others face in great parts of Syria and Iraq, the people need the support, solidarity and resolve of the West to stand up to this contagion of evil."
"If anybody wishes to rebuild the Middle East we need the leaders of different communities to be respected and allowed to work with all people."


Civil war plaguing Christian South Sudan
Thu 09 Jul 2015
By Desmond Busteed
Charity World Vision is raising concerns that South Sudan is descending in to civil war.

The predominantly Christian South Sudanese were so full of hope four years ago when the country celebrated independence from the majority Muslim population of Sudan after 21 years of turmoil, but renewed fighting in Upper Nile and Unity states has left thousands of other people without homes.
Peace negotiations collapsed in March after President Kiir and rebel leader Machar failed to agree on a power sharing deal.
"We're not seeing direct conflict between Sudan and South Sudan. What we're really, really focussed on is the internal conflict, the fighting between the opposition and the Government, that's what is having the primary effect on the people we're trying to serve," said Perry Mansfield, World Vision South Sudan's National Director to Premier.
It's claimed South Sudan's economy is also dangerously on the verge of collapse. The government has denied this but oil production, the only foreign exchange earner for the country has dropped by nearly a third.
That, the conflict and a drop in global oil prices has escalated the already fragile fledgling state.
The UN mission in South Sudan has also published a report condemning the government offensive. UNMISS accused government forces and their allies of burning people alive in their homes, raping women and killing civilians.
The rebels too and their militia - the white army - have been accused of human rights abuses.
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Post  Admin on Sun 28 Jun 2015, 11:42 pm

Proposed ‘Homage to Satan’ Near Ten Commandments Monument to Be Unveiled
June 27, 2015 | Filed under: Law & Government,Life & Society,Top Stories | By: Heather Clark 
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Satanic TempleDETROIT, Mich. — A New York-based Satanist group has announced the unveiling of its sculpted ‘homage to Satan,’ which it seeks to place next to a Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the Oklahoma state capitol building.

As previously reported, the Satanic Temple issued a news release about its intentions in 2013 following the filing of a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which asserted that the presence of the Ten Commandments display on government property violated the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution.
The Satanic Temple said that it offered to to donate a statue of Baphomet to be placed near the Ten Commandments display in order to “appease the ACLU’s concerns.”
“The statue will serve as a beacon calling for compassion and empathy among all living creatures,” spokesperson Lucien Greaves explained in his application to the Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission. “The statue will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation.”
The organization proceeded to launch an indiegogo fundraising campaign, which raised over $28,000 for the creation of the monument.
“A Satanic monument erected in contrast to a Ten Commandments monument will send a clear and distinct message to the world that pluralism is alive and well in the United States,” it asserted.
Last May, it was announced that the statue was nearing completion, which features the goat-headed figure Baphomet making the sign for the occult as he sits upon a throne with a pentagram overhead. Children fixate their eyes upon him on both sides.
In September, Seventh District Court Judge Thomas Prince concluded that the Ten Commandments monument serves a historical purpose and is not solely the presentment of a religious message as it sits on a plot of land that contains 51 other expressive monuments.

However, despite the monument being upheld as constitutional, the Satanic Temple forged ahead with its plans to place the Baphomet statue on the capitol grounds. Now, the organization has announced that it will be hosting an official unveiling ceremony next month in Detroit.
“As a ‘homage’ to Satan, the incredible statue is intended to complement and contrast the Ten Commandments monument that already resides on Oklahoma State Capitol grounds,” it recently wrote on its website. “The event will serve as a call-to-arms from which The Satanic Temple will kick off our largest fight to date in the name of individual rights to free exercise against self-serving theocrats.”
The group invited supporters to “dress to impress the Devil” and “come dance with [him] and experience history in the making.”
It is not clear whether the Satanic Temple has obtained permission to place the monument on the capitol grounds as it wishes. Some have expressed that the proposed “homage to Satan” is offensive to Oklahoma residents.
“I think you’ve got to remember where you are. This is Oklahoma, the middle of the heartland,” Representative Don Armes told the Associated Press. “I think we need to be tolerant of people who think different than us, but this is Oklahoma, and that’s not going to fly here.”
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Post  Admin on Thu 25 Jun 2015, 9:27 am

Government condemns 'appalling atrocities' against Christians in Nigeria
Wed 24 Jun 2015
By Marcus Jones
Christians in Nigeria are being subjected to 'appalling atrocities' by extremist group Boko Haram, according to the UK Government.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Foreign Office Minister James Duddridge responded to a question asked by Christian DUP MP Jim Shannon, who questioned: "What discussions he has had with the new Prime Minister of Nigeria on the situation of the Christian minority in the north of that country".
In his response Mr Duddridge said the Prime Minster and Foreign Secretary had held talks with President Buhari to underline their concerns.
He said: "Boko Haram's attacks are often indiscriminate and they commit appalling atrocities against all those, both Christian and Muslim, who do not follow their extremist and intolerant views.
"We condemn their actions unreservedly. As the Prime Minister, my right hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr Cameron) informed colleagues on 10 June, we have equally underlined to the President our commitment to helping him tackle the threat.
"The UK is providing a substantial and increasing package of intelligence, military and development support, including programmes working with religious leaders to directly address conflict in northern Nigeria and training and advice to Nigerian units deploying against Boko Haram.#
Boko Haram has been behind many attacks on churches and Christian communities in Nigeria. It's claimed its leaders want to create a fully Islamic State. Currently the country is made up of 51% Christians and 46% Muslims. Christians tend to preside in the south of the country while Muslims tend to live in the north

Westboro threatens to picket Charleston funerals
Wed 24 Jun 2015
By Antony Bushfield
Extremists from the Westboro Baptist Church have threatened to protest at the funerals of the nine people killed in last week's mass shooting in Charleston.

The organisation has described the dead at Emanuel AME Church as "Satan's boyz" and warned on social networking site Twitter it would attempt to picket the funerals.
It claimed online that God sent shooter Dylann Roof, who killed the pastor Revd Clementa Pinckney, Cynthia Hurd, 54, Revd Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, 45, Tywanza Sanders, 26, Ethel Lance, 70, Revd Depayne Middleton-Doctor, 49, Susie Jackson, 87, Revd Daniel Simmons Sr, 74 and Myra Thompson, 59.
The White House has confirmed US President Barack Obama will attend the funeral of Revd Pinckney on Friday.
A number of people have also promised on social media to form a 'human barrier' around the funerals to prevent Westboro getting close to the events.
Elsewhere the hacking group Anonymous has pledged to take down the computer systems of Westboro in response to the threat.
In a statement the activists said they would "entirely" destroy the organisations online presence.
Westboro Baptist Church is based in Kansas and has around 50 members. It has found fame through picketing the funerals of soldiers or other notable people.
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Post  Admin on Fri 19 Jun 2015, 4:08 pm

Pastor to face prosecution over Islam comments
Thu 18 Jun 2015
By Marcus Jones
A pastor from Northern Ireland is to be prosecuted after describing Islam as "satanic" and "heathen".

James McConnell made the comments while preaching at Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle church in Belfast.
After the sermon was posted online, a number of complaints were made, which led to an apology from Mr McConnell.
However after police questioning, the 78 year old is reported to have refused to accept a lesser punishment which meant the case would not have gone to court.
A spokesperson for the Northern Ireland's Public Prosecution Service said: "I can confirm that following consideration of a complaint in relation to an internet broadcast of a sermon in May 2014, a decision was taken to offer an individual an informed warning for an offence contrary to the Communications Act 2003.
"That offence was one of sending, or causing to be sent, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message or other matter that was grossly offensive. The offer of an informed warning was refused by the defendant and accordingly the matter is now proceeding by way of a summary prosecution in the Magistrates Court."
Shortly after the incident, Northern Ireland's First Minister Peter Robinson also had to apologise after appearing to defend the pastor.
He had said he would not trust Muslims for spiritual guidance but would trust them to "go down to the shops" for him.
It has not been revealed when Pastor McConnell's case will go to court.
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Post  Admin on Thu 18 Jun 2015, 9:33 pm

Police arrest church shooting suspect
Thu 18 Jun 2015
By Aaron James
A man has been arrested after nine black people were shot during a prayer meeting at a church in America.
Police had been hunting for 21-year-old Dylann Roof from Lexington, South Carolina.
@BerkeleySCGov
Dylann Roof
The suspect's uncle has told local media he gave him a gun as a birthday present in
Officers said they were treating the mass shooting at Emmanuel AME church in Charleston as a hate crime.
One of the people killed was the church's senior pastor, Revd Clementa Pinckney, 41, who had a wife and two children.
Speaking in response to the attack, Charleston mayor Jospeh Riley said: "The only reason that someone could walk into a church and shoot people praying is out of hate.
[url=http://www.premier.org.uk/News/World/Police-arrest-church-shooting-suspect? news email 18 June Christian Media]READ MORE[/url]

Church holds service for murdered Carlisle teen
Wed 17 Jun 2015
By Desmond Busteed
A book of condolence has opened at St Herbert's Church in Carlisle for murdered teenager Jordan Watson.
The 14-year-old was found in Upperby Cemetery on Tuesday with multiple stab wounds to the head and neck, in what police have called a savage and brutal attack.
"The church is open today from 4.30 till 6(pm), with the book of remembrance and condolence and people are going to be offered the chance to come together to share their grief and shock and to light candles and really just to come together as a community," Revd Alan Jones, vicar of St Herbert's Church explained on Premier's News Hour.
An 18 year-old man's been arrested in connection with the murder.
"Extensive searches have taken place in the area of the cemetery and the surrounding parts of Carlisle," said Superintendent Andy Slattery at a press conference on Wednesday. 
"At 10.39am this morning an 18-year-old man from Carlisle was arrested on suspicion of Jordan's murder.
"However, this is one line of inquiry. The investigation is ongoing and we are keeping an open mind about the motive and why indeed this crime took place.
"We would like to hear from anybody who has any information that can assist the investigation in any way.
"In particular, anybody who saw or heard anything unusual in the area of the cemetery or anybody who saw Jordan on the 15 June."
The Bishop of Carlisle, the Rt Revd James Newcome, said: "All our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Jordan at this time.
"Through times of trial and deep hurt, it is good to know that the love of Christ is there for everyone. I pray that God's love will provide comfort to all those who held Jordan so dearly."
Revd Alan Jones, vicar of St Herbert's Church speaking to Premier's Hannah Tooley on the News Hour:
READ MORE

French Muslim leader: Turn empty churches into mosques
Wed 17 Jun 2015
By Hannah Tooley
A Muslim leader in France has suggested that unused Christian churches should have the opportunity to be converted into mosques in the country.
Dalil Boubakeur, the rector of the Grand Mosque in Paris and President of the French Council of Muslim Faith, argued that "It's the same God," speaking to Europe 1 radio.
"The rites are similar. I think that Muslims and Christians can live alongside one another.''
He said that religious buildings should be available for other faiths if they are no longer in use.
During the interview he stated as many as 5,000 are needed for the country's Muslim population: "It's a delicate issue, but why not?"
It is thought there are currently about 2,500 mosques in France with another 300 under construction.
READ MORE

Christians rally against climate change
Wed 17 Jun 2015
By Antony Bushfield
Thousands of Christians are calling on the government to take action on climate change and convince other countries to do the same.
Believers have attended a church service in Westminster and will hold a rally at Parliament to highlight their concerns about climate change.
The mass rally is the first the government has faced since the election and has been organised by The Climate Coalition, which includes a number of Christian charities like Tearfund, Christian Aid and CAFOD.
Christian leaders including the Church of England's lead bishop for Environmental Affairs, Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, gathered to encourage others to meet their MPs to urge change.
READ MORE
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Tue 16 Jun 2015, 9:10 pm

PREMIER
http://www.premier.org.uk



Matt Redman on how executed prisoners sang 10,000 Reasons
By: Joy Tibbs | Jun 2015
The worship leader describes the extraordinary story of a group of death row prisoners, known as the Bali Nine, who sang his well-known song as they were shot

Earlier this year, the worship song ‘10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)’ was sung by a group of prisoners as they faced a 13-man firing squad in Indonesia. Speaking to Premier, worship leader Matt Redman, who wrote the song with Swedish songwriter Jonas Myrin, described the incident as ‘profound’
The prisoners in question included ‘Bali Nine’ ringleaders Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, who had been on death row for almost a decade for drug trafficking. All but one of the eight had turned to Christ since the start of their incarceration.
‘They had become Christians, full on life-transformed, and they were transforming other people’s lives,’ explains Redman.
That’s the most amazing act of worship I’ve ever heard of
Despite protests from across the globe, the authorities decided to uphold the death penalties. But when the day came for them to face the firing squad, something extraordinary happened. The prisoners declined the offer to wear blindfolds and instead stood and faced their executors. According to witnesses, they recited the Lord’s Prayer, embraced one another, and sang two songs, ‘Amazing Grace’ and ‘10,000 Reasons’, before their voices were drowned out by gunfire.

‘They sang one song after another, praising God,’ Pr Karina de Vega, who was present at the execution, told Fairfax Media. ‘They sang a few songs together, like in a choir. The non-Christian I believe sang from his heart. It was such an experience.’
Reflecting on the incident, Redman says: ‘I don’t think it gets more profound than that. Firstly, as a worship leader, that’s the most amazing act of worship I’ve ever heard of. Secondly, it tells me that you can face anything in this life and still be found with a song of worship on your lips, even a firing squad. And thirdly, I just thought, “how did that song end up there?” What an amazing thing.
‘These are the things that I love; when things are immeasurable. Sometimes people are looking at charts or the song has sold this many, or this many people showed up at a worship event. Forget all that stuff. What’s the stuff that’s immeasurable, that you can’t really put a figure on? That’s the stuff I love. There’s no way of measuring that. It’s just profound, it’s immense, it’s intense. It’s wonderful, beautiful. That’s the stuff I want to do in ministry.’
PREMIER 2  min VIDEO Matt Redman interview
 Surprisingly, 10,000 Reasons almost didn’t make it onto the album Redman was working on.

‘I thought, “Oh that’s a bit simple, it’s a bit folky,’ he recalls. ‘It doesn’t have a pre-chorus, it doesn’t have a bridge.” That’s how silly I am. We had, like, 20 songs to choose from. Hand on heart, without a team around me I may not have put that on.’
But the song soon gained traction, more than justifying its inclusion on the album and the album title, 10,000 Reasons. ‘It seemed like the song was connecting with people,’ he says. ‘I think some of the songs that have travelled round the most for us I had no clue when I was writing it; had no clue when I was recording it. Sometimes you just write your heart out, record it and just see what God does with it.’
Matt Redman's new album Unbroken Praise is out soon
To receive a free copy of Premier Christianity magazine click here
https://www.premierchristianity.com/subscriptions/free-trial

VIDEO
Matt Redman - 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtwIT8JjddM
An unexpected ‘miracle’

One prisoner who was due to be executed alongside the eight was spared almost at the last minute.Mary Jane Veloso had been caught at Yogyakarta Airport in April 2010 with 2.6kg of heroin in her possession. She was sentenced to death and her appeals were rejected.
But the 30-year-old mother-of-two maintained that she had been tricked into travelling to Indonesia from her home in the Philippines to begin a new job as a maid. She alleged that she had been given new clothes and a bag that, unbeknown to her, had heroin sewn into the lining.
On the day she was due to be executed, the woman accused of duping Veloso turned up at a police station in the Philippines seeking police protection. She claimed to be receiving death threats and was taking into protective custody.
At the 11th hour, Indonesia issued a reprieve for Veloso, stating that she was required to testify against a ‘perpetrator suspected of human trafficking’. Veloso was transferred to a prison in Yogyakarta and her legal team plans to launch another appeal, stating that she was a trafficking victim.
When the news of the reprieve broke, activists cheered in the streets and the hashtag #MaryJaneLives trended on Twitter. Veloso’s mother Celia told reporters: ‘A miracle has happened to my child.’
About the Authors
Joy Tibbs
Joy Tibbs is interim deputy editor at Premier Christianity.
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Tue 16 Jun 2015, 10:36 am

PREMIER
http://www.premier.org.uk



Pope warns of "unprecedented destruction" by climate change
Tue 16 Jun 2015
By Aaron James
Pope Francis has warned that climate change will cause "unprecedented destruction" to the planet unless we change our lifestyles and production methods.
His encyclical on the environment called Praised Be: On the care of the common home was meant to be released this Thursday, however the Italian newspaper L'Espresso leaked the document.
The Vatican has denounced the leak as "heinous," but confirmed it would still be released as planned.
It's reported to say: "If the current trend continues this century we could witness climate change unlike anything seen before and the unprecedented destruction of ecosystems, with serious consequences for all of us.
"Climate change is a problem with serious implications for the global environment, social, economic, distribution [systems] and policies and constitutes one of the main challenges for humanity.
READ MORE

Brit suicide bomber: Think of the victims, urges Christian
Mon 15 Jun 2015
By Antony Bushfield
A Christian expert in Islamic Affairs has told Premier people should focus on the victims of Britain's youngest suicide bomber rather than the attacker himself.
Talha Asmal, 17, reportedly left Britain recently and then detonated a vehicle fitted with explosives while fighting for Islamic State in Iraq.
His attack on an oil refinery in the city of Baiji left 11 people dead.
Islamic State used social media to indicate the teenager was one of the men involved in the bombing.
It has led to more calls to find ways to identify young British Muslims who could be radicalised.
But Christian and expert in Islamic Affairs, Dr Anthony McRoy, told Premier's News Hour the focus should be on the victims of the attack.
"This young man made a conscious choice," he said, "we've got 11 people who've been killed as a result of this, now that's where our focus should be, on the victims of this incident, not this young man."
READ MORE

Indian PM 'broke promise to protect Christians'
Mon 15 Jun 2015
By Antony Bushfield
India's Prime Minister is being accused of failing to keep a promise to protect Christians from extremists.
In February Narendra Modi pledged: "My government will not allow any religious group, belonging to the majority or the minority, to incite hatred against others, overtly or covertly. My government will act strongly in this regard."
One of the country's most respected Cardinals said Mr Modi had not lived up to his word following a number of attacks on Churches and Christians.
Cardinal Telesphore Toppo said there was an urgent need for the government to take action in the face of rising attacks by Hindu radicals.
Aid to the Church in Need
"They [the government] have not come out to protect and defend [Christians]," he said.
"The Prime Minister has only once spoken in defence of the constitution and he promised to protect the Christians and other minorities. But that was only a promise."
India's constitution does guarantee protection for Christians and other religious minorities but campaigners say believers continue to remain targets of religious discrimination by Hindu extremists and are offered little protection by the government.
READ MORE

Calls to scrap daily Christian worship in schools
Mon 15 Jun 2015
By Hannah Tooley
Schools should no longer be required to hold Christian worship sessions, according to a former education secretary.
Charles Clarke, who was in the post from 2002 until 2004 has called on the government to change the rules in England and Wales to stop compulsory daily acts of collective worship. 
Mr Clarke and Linda Woodhead, Professor of Religion and Philosophy at Lancaster University, have called for radical reform in England and Wales.
The British Humanist Association has welcomed this call to end compulsory worship and for a new national curriculum for education about religious and non-religious beliefs.
The pair argue the current relationship between faith and schools is out of date and want to abolish the requirement for all schools to hold daily worship with the government allowing more practical use of the time.
They have created a pamphlet setting out a series of recommendations including; replacing the RE syllabus that includes both religious and non-religious beliefs.
READ MORE
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Assisted dying bill "incredibly dangerous", says Christian campaigner
Wed 10 Jun 2015
By Aaron James
A Christian campaigner has said a new assisted dying bill which Parliament will discuss is "incredibly dangerous" because of its lack of safeguards.

Dr Peter Saunders, who is part of the group Care Not Killing, also said most people don't want the right to die, symbolised in the fact all of the British regional governments had rejected the motion in the past.
He's been speaking after Rob Marris MP, who won a private member's bill ballot last week, used the opportunity to propose new legislation to revive Lord Falconer's Assisted Dying Bill.
Lord Falconer's bill would allow a person with only six months to live to be prescribed lethal drugs, if they have a "clear and settled intention" to die, and two separate doctors agree. A High Court judge would also have powers to intervene where appropriate.
The bill ran out of time in the last parliament before it could be passed.
Most churches and Christian organisations oppose the right to die, saying man does not have the right to end life prematurely, and because states should help people to live - not to die.
Dr Saunders told Premier's News Hour: "This bill is incredibly dangerous. Its safeguards are not safe... similar legislation's been rejected several times in Westminster, and a similar bill was rejected by the Scottish parliament just a couple of weeks ago.
"The danger is that any law allowing assisted suicide or euthanasia will be open to abuse, to extension, and will put pressure on vulnerable people to end their lives."
However Pavan Dhaliwal, the Director of Public Affairs and Campaigns at the British Humanist Association thinks the bill would allow people to end their suffering early, and wants the bill to go even further, including all people suffering a terminal illness.
Ms Dhaliwal also said there needed to be "very strict safeguards" to make sure people weren't pressured into dying early, although she admitted no law is completely watertight.
She told Premier's News Hour: "We very much support Rob Marris' private member's bill, in that it would help reduce suffering of people who are terminally ill, and they wish to end their lives.
"I would go further, and say that the bill should go wider and cover those people are also incurably suffering, such as the cases of Tony Nicholson and Paul Lamb, and there is overwhelming support for such legislation amongst the public.
"There should be very strict safeguards put into place, which of course is not beyond the wit of our policy and law makers."
The first reading of the Bill is expected to take place later this month
Listen to Dr Peter Saunders speaking on the News Hour:
2.38 LISTEN
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Fri 29 May 2015, 7:43 pm



‘Pope Francis’ Claims Devil Keeping Evangelicals, Roman Catholics Divided: ‘They Are One’
May 28, 2015 
ROME — In a recorded video statement released on Saturday, the Roman Catholic Pontiff known as Francis asserted that evangelicals and Catholics are one, and that it is the devil who has divided the two groups.
“Division is the work of the ‘Father of Lies,’ ‘the Father of Discord,’ who does everything possible to keep us divided,” he said.
The eight-minute video was for the “Celebration of Christian Unity” event organized by John 17 Ministries out of Pheonix, Ariz., which seeks to unite Christians and Catholics.
“I feel like saying something that may sound controversial, or even heretical, perhaps,” Francis stated. “But there is someone who ‘knows’ that despite our differences we are one.”
“The devil knows that Christians are disciples of Christ, that they are one, that they are brothers! He doesn’t care if they are Evangelicals or Orthodox, Lutherans, Catholics or Apostolic … He doesn’t care! They are Christians,” he said.
The pontiff asserted that the devil is persecuting both evangelicals and Roman Catholics alike because they are all Christian.
“It is he who is persecuting us. It is he who is persecuting Christians today, he who is anointing us with (the blood of) martyrdom,” he said. “Dear brothers and sisters, we are living in an ‘ecumenism of blood.'”
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Thu 14 May 2015, 9:15 pm


Texas Senate Approves Bill Protecting Pastors Who Refuse to Officiate Same-Sex ‘Weddings’
May 14, 2015 | Filed under: Law & Government,Life & Society,Top Stories | By: Heather Clark 
 188 10  0 204
churchAUSTIN — The Texas Senate has approved a bill that would protect pastors from legal action if they refuse to officiate same-sex ceremonies.

Sen. Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls) presented S.B. 2065, entitled “Freedom of Religion with Respect to Recognizing or Performing Certain Marriages.”
“A religious organization, an organization supervised or controlled by or in connection with a religious organization, an individual employed by a religious organization while acting in the scope of that employment, or a clergy or minister may not be required to solemnize any marriage, provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges for a purpose related to the solemnization, formation, or celebration of any marriage, or treat
any marriage as valid for any purpose if the action would cause the organization or individual to violate a sincerely held religious belief,” it reads.

The legislation also prevents faith-based organizations from being sued for declining to directly or indirectly participate in the event.

“A refusal to provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges [under this law] is not the basis for a civil or criminal cause of action or any other action by this state or a political subdivision of this state to penalize or withhold benefits or privileges, including tax exemptions or governmental contracts, grants, or licenses, from any protected organization or individual,” it states.
State Senators debated the bill on Monday, with some stating that it is necessary due to the growing pressure on Christians to accommodate homosexuality and others calling the legislation discriminatory. The publication Towelroad classified the bill as a continuance of a “full-fledged assault on same-sex marriage.”

“Pastors’ First Amendment rights are very important, and they should not be caused to do something that violates their sincerely held beliefs,” Estes told Breitbart Texas.
Connect with Christian News

“I just hope you’re not getting people afraid of something that’s not a problem,” Sen. John Whitmire (D-Houston) asserted. “I don’t see what the problem is that you’re trying to solve.”
But Dave Welch, president of Texas Pastor Council Action told reporters that he thought Whitmire’s statement was naive.

“Senator Whitmire apparently lives in a parallel universe that does not have the Human Rights Campaign, President Barack Obama and Mayors like Annise Parker in Houston who are willing and committed to using police powers to force acceptance of the LGBTQIA agenda,” he said.
As previously reported, Texas Senator and Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz told reporters in 2013 that he believes churches could be the next target for homosexual activists.

“There are a lot of Christian scholars, when they talk about the marriage issue, they see it in essence going down this line of potential hate speech from the pulpit,” David Brody of CBN stated. “What is your sense about where this potentially could be going?”
“Well, if you look at other nations that have gone down the road towards gay marriage, that’s the next step where it gets enforced,” Cruz replied. “It gets enforced against Christian pastors who decline to perform gay marriages, who speak out and preach biblical truths on marriage.”
Other states have presented similar bills to protect pastors, such as in South Dakota, Arizona and Utah.

A special message from the publisher...
Dear Reader, our hearts are deeply grieved by the ongoing devastation in Iraq, and through this we have been compelled to take a stand at the gates of hell against the enemy who came to kill and destroy. Bibles for Iraq is a project to put Arabic and Kurdish audio Bibles into the hands of Iraqi refugees—most of whom are illiterate and who have never heard the gospel. Will you stand with us and make a donation today to this important effort to bless the Iraqi people? Click here to send a Bible to a refugee >>http://www.biblesforiraq.org/
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Post  Admin on Sun 12 Apr 2015, 5:32 pm



‘I Met Messiah': New Website Shares Video Testimonies of Jews Who Received Jesus

April 9, 2015 | Filed under: Evangelism and Missions,Top Stories | By: Heather Clark 


NETANYA, Israel A new website has been launched that shares the video testimonials of Jews in professional business who have all received Jesus as the Messiah.
Launched by Eitan Bar, a Messianic Jew himself, IMetMessiah.com is an evangelistic effort to speak to Jews curious about Jesus.

“As Jewish people, most of us grow up without considering whether or not Yeshua is the Messiah expected by our people for millennia,” he explains on the site. “Yet, something happened in our lives that changed each of us and caused us to rethink the usual Jewish views about Jesus.”

“We offer these stories to you and hope that your relationship with God will deepen through meeting our storytellers,” Bar says.

With over a dozen testimonials posted online and many more marked as forthcoming, IMetMessiah.com presents the testimonies of Mottel Baleson, now a messianic preacher in New Jersey, Michael Goldstone, the founder of Regency Lighting, Grant Berry, creator of Styli-Style Cosmetics, and others.

Grant Berry
Berry said that as he moved to America from Israel and became successful in the beauty industry, he he still felt empty and depressed. However, a make-up artist that he began working with, named Maria, soon told him about Jesus. He then ventured on a spiritual journey as he opened up the New Testament and began reading.
Berry said that he tried to pray to God each night over a period of three weeks but felt like his prayers were bouncing off the ceiling.

“I was frustrated,” he recalled. “Here Maria was, this Christian girl that had a relationship with my God—the God of Abraham—and here I was, a Jew, trying to have a relationship with my God—the God of Abraham—and nothing. I was disconnected.”
Berry told her about his frustration with feeling that he was unable to reach God.
“I have been trying to tell you for six to eight months … You can’t have the Father without the Son,” 


Maria replied.
He immediately returned to his apartment where he cried out to God to show him if Jesus was really the Messiah. Berry said that he felt a rushing wind in his being and knew that God was speaking to Him. From that moment, he believed.

Click here to view Berry’s testimony.
http://www.imetmessiah.com/index.php/testimonies/grant-berry
    

Mottel Baleston
Baleston said that he had always heard about the outward things that one needed to do to be close to God, but never could make sense of it. He was also curious after his grandparents warned him to stay away from the New Testament as they asserted that it was filled with hatred against Jews.
“Growing up, we always understood that we had our Bible and the Gentiles had their Bible—the New Testament—and that they were two completely separate books,” Baleston said.
But as a college student, Baleston began to read the Scriptures one day while visiting the library and found the truth for himself.

“I thought it was going to be a handbook on how to persecute the Jews,” he recalled. “And yet, when I opened it, I read a story written by Jews about Jewish people.”
Baleston said that he opened up to the genealogy of Jesus, who was written as being the son of David, the son of Abraham. He was amazed as all three were Jews, and soon realized that the New Testament wasn’t against Jews at all as it was written by and about Jews.

“This is the One who was promised in our Bible [in] the 53rd chapter of Isaiah,” he exclaimed. “It is astonishing. If you were to just read that chapter … you would say, ‘Oh, this is some Christian Bible. This is Jesus.’ What you realize, though, is that it is in the middle of our Bible—our Jewish Bible!”
He soon told his father about his faith in Christ, and although he was skeptical, Baleston’s father opened the Scriptures and received Jesus as well.

Click here to view Baleston’s testimony.
http://www.imetmessiah.com/index.php/testimonies/mordechai-baleston


Michael Goldstone 
Goldstone first heard about Jesus while hitch-hiking to Mexico with his best friend Ron. He had been experimenting with drugs and was dabbling in books about Eastern religions in an attempt to find God.
While making a stop in San Francisco on the way back home from trying to obtain mushrooms to start a drug business, he met a girl named Debra and began to pour his heart out about his search. Goldstone soon began to read the New Testament and learned about Jesus.

“Some of the things He said really disturbed me,” he recalled. “He said, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life, and no one can come to the Father but through Me.’ I said, ‘How can this be?'”
Goldstone called out God that day and asked Him to show him the truth. As he did so, he believed that something happened in his heart. He told Ron, who said that he had been on the same journey and had received Jesus as the Messiah.

“Here we are that next day just embracing each other and crying, and sharing with each other how God met us, and how we both had asked Jesus to come into our life,” Goldstone recalled.
But the story didn’t end there. After he began attending church, a minister came to see him and began reading Isaiah 53 out loud.

“He said, ‘Brother Michael, where do you think this is?’ And I said, ‘I don’t know. Matthew? Luke?” Goldstone said. “And he hands me the book and it said Isaiah. And I said, ‘You’re kidding. This is the Old Testament?’ It was so obvious to me that this was talking about Jesus.”
The minister proceeded to show him Scriptures throughout the Old Testament that were prophesies of the Messiah, and Goldstone came to faith in Jesus. Debra soon became a Christian as well, and his mother and father also came to Christ.

Click here to view Goldstone’s testimony.
http://www.imetmessiah.com/index.php/testimonies/michael-goldstone
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Re: CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

Post  Admin on Sat 24 Jan 2015, 7:01 pm



'I'm Now An Atheist': Newsboys Co-Founder Renounces Christianity
 
(CN) -- In an article published by the faith site Patheos on Wednesday, one of the original co-founders of the popular Christian band Newsboys revealed that he has since renounced Christianity and now identifies as an atheist.

“I always felt uncomfortable with the strict rules imposed by Christianity,” George Perdikis, who co-founded the group in 1985, wrote in the guest post. “All I wanted to do was create and play rock and roll … and yet most of the attention I received was focused on how well I maintained the impossible standards of religion. I wanted my life to be measured by my music, not by my ability to resist temptation.”
 
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Woman Raped on Business Trip Refuses to Abort Unborn Baby
 
(CN) -- A woman from North Carolina who was raped on a business trip a year ago is sharing her story of how she and her husband refused abortion when she found herself pregnant after the assault.

Jennifer Christie says the incident happened in January 2014 as she stayed at a hotel in a college town. She remembers opening her hotel room door, and then when she turned to close it, a large man stood before her and struck her in the face. Christie was found lying in the staircase and tested negative for a number of sexually transmitted diseases.
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Report: New York Woman to 'Marry' Her Biological Father
 
(CN) -- A New York woman from the Great Lakes region says that she is set to marry her biological father after being estranged from him for 12 years—a report some say confirms the slippery slope America is on concerning the devaluation and redefinition of marriage.

The unnamed woman is 18 years old and says that she was conceived by her parents on prom night when they were 18 themselves. Her parents soon split and her mother, who struggles with a mental disorder, married another man, and then another—neither of whom she particularly liked.
 
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Hundreds Rally as Duke Muslims Broadcast 'Allah Is Great' from Chapel Steps
 
(CN) -- Hundreds of non-Muslims, including professing Christians, rallied outside of the Duke chapel on Friday as an estimated 100 Islamic students gathered for the call to prayer, which was broadcast from the university’s chapel steps.

As previously reported, the school had outlined in its student paper earlier this week that the “moderately amplified” chant would take place beginning Friday from the chapel bell tower.
 
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CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK

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CHRISTIAN NEWS NETWORK
provides up-to-date news and information affecting the body of Christ worldwide from an uncompromising Biblical worldview. Through investigative journalism, direct interviews and in-depth reporting, our breaking news stories go well beyond the surface and into the thick of the issues and current events affecting our nation and world. More...
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'I Was Aware of Everything': Man Tells Story After Coming Out of 12-Year 'Vegetative State'
(CN) -- A man in the UK is sharing his story of spending 12 years trapped in his body after also being in a coma for two of those years.
Martin Pistorius became ill when he was just 12 years old, and his condition continued to deteriorate until he was unable to move or communicate with the outside world.
“I was completely unresponsive,” he told the Daily Mail. “I was in a virtual coma but the doctors couldn’t diagnose what had caused it.”

Doctors weren’t completely sure what was wrong with the boy, but tried various medicines to see if they would help—all to no avail.
“I was treated for tuberculosis and cryptococcal meningitis, but no conclusive diagnosis was made. Medication after medication was tried—to no effect,” Pistorius explained. “I’d traveled beyond what medicine understood. I was lost in the land where dragons lie and no one could rescue me.”
Rodney and Joan Pistorius, Martin’s parents, were told by the doctors to take him home and let him pass away peacefully. They advised that he had the brain function of a three-month-old baby.
But Pistorius kept going. And after two years, he regained consciousness. But as he could not communicate, no one else knew what had happened to him.
 “Yes, I was there, not from the very beginning, but about two years into my vegetative state, I began to wake up,” he told reporters. “I was aware of everything, just like any normal person. Everyone was so used to me not being there that they didn’t notice when I began to be present again. The stark reality hit me that I was going to spend the rest of my life like that—totally alone.”
For the next several years, Pistorius spent much of his time at a care center, as his father would rise early at 5 a.m. to get him dressed and out the door, and then would bring him back at night to feed and bathe him, and put him to bed. His caretakers played the children’s program “Barney and Friends” for him all day—something that Pistorius said he despised, but no one knew it as he couldn’t tell them.
“My mind was trapped inside a useless body, my arms and legs weren’t mine to control and my voice was mute. I couldn’t make a sign or sounds to let anyone know I’d become aware again. I was invisible—the ghost boy,” he said. “I cannot even express to you how much I hated Barney.”
Pistorius was also saddened when he saw life seemingly moving on without him as no one knew the he was really there.
“I have a younger brother and a sister, and they and my parents would go on holidays without me, which was extremely difficult,” he told reporters. “The worst part was that I had a perpetual fear they’d have a car accident and die, and would never come to fetch me. … There were many times when I cried inside. I reached a point where I essentially gave up.”
But in his time of darkness and discouragement, Pistorius eventually determined that he was going to make the most of the situation. He began telling time by noting the sunrise and sunset each day, and at the age 0f 25, a therapist finally noticed that Pistorius was making small gestures to indicate that he could communicate. He eventually regained use of his limbs and could make facial expressions again.
Now, Pistorius, 39, is married and smiles widely. While he cannot yet speak on his own, he uses a computer to express his thoughts and feelings. Pistorius has now written a book called “Ghost Boy” to share “the miraculous story of a misdiagnosed boy trapped inside his own body.”

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Alabama Officials Pass Resolution Declaring Winfield a 'City Under God'

(CN) -- Officials in an Alabama city recently passed a resolution declaring the municipality of Winfield a “city under God.”

The resolution was passed in late December at the prompting of Mayor Randy Price, who urged city council to make the statement and take a stand for Christ.
“I feel like we need to stand up for what is right,” he told AL.com. “Our forefathers said ‘One nation under God’ and we went so far away from that. There are not enough godly people involved in day-to-day decisions.”
“Whereas we acknowledge God is the owner of the City of Winfield and that it is a City under God. We acknowledge that at all times, He is in control,” the resolution reads. “Whereas, we acknowledge that through His leadership, the mayor and city council will seek his wisdom and knowledge to be good stewards of the city.”

“Whereas, we acknowledge that though prayer, with His guidance and presence, that we will be able to trust that no problem will be too large or too small to overcome,” it continues. “Whereas, we acknowledge that the City of Winfield is where it is today because of God’s grace and mercy. Whereas, we acknowledge that at all times and in all circumstances, His will shall be done. Whereas, we acknowledge that to God be the glory.”
Some expressed support for the statement following passage.
“[W]e like the idea that God is acknowledged and that He is given the glory,” reads an editorial in the Marion County Journal Record. “Mind you, some of other religions—or no religions—might fuss, but if our coins can say, ‘In God We Trust,’ we see no harm in acknowledging the Almighty…”
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Two Dead, Hundreds Injured as Filipino Crowd Throngs Idol Being Marched Through Streets
(CN) -- Two people are dead and hundreds more were injured as the result of massive throngs that followed and sought to press up against a centuries-old statue of Christ that was marched through the streets of Manila as part of an annual Roman Catholic celebration called the Feast of the Black Nazarene.

While the large number of those filling the streets could not be counted with surety, police in the Philippines estimate that at times more than half a million Filipinos participated in the procession, which takes place every Jan. 9th in the city. Roman Catholics carry white cloths and seek to touch the wooden carving of Jesus carrying the cross out of their belief that it possesses healing powers.
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Pastor Exhorts Montana Lawmakers to Obey God Rather Than Men
 
(CN) -- A Wisconsin pastor presented a sermon before the Montana legislature this past weekend, teaching on what is known as the Doctrine of Lesser Magistrates, a historic and biblical doctrine that dates back to the times of Moses and Daniel.

Matt Trewhella, pastor of Mercy Seat Christian Church in Milwaukee, had been invited by the group Project Liberty Tree to present this year’s election sermon at the Montana state house in Helena following the release of his book “The Doctrine of Lesser Magistrates.” The book focuses on the refusal of civil magistrates to obey laws that are immoral or ungodly, believing that divine laws trump human commands.
 With numerous social issues and court rulings in recent years that seek to force Christians to violate the law of God, Trewhella preached a message to those gathered entitled “The Duty of the Lesser Magistrate in the Face of Tyranny.”

“The cold-blooded murder of the preborn, the imposition of homosexual marriage upon our states, no-fault divorce, the decriminalization of adultery, the phalanx of laws created by the State to invade our domestic affairs, disarm the people, seize our property, and harass our persons—all point to the growing tyranny in America,” he declared.
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Other Top News Stories of Interest:
High School Teacher Accused of Promoting Christianity, Giving 'Bible Cookies' to Students
http://christiannews.net/2015/01/13/high-school-teacher-accused-of-promoting-christianity-giving-bible-cookies-to-students/

Atheists from 'Better News Club' Launch Program to Counter Christian 'Good News Club'
http://christiannews.net/2015/01/12/atheists-from-better-news-club-launch-program-to-counter-christian-good-news-club/

Judge Rules Florist May Be Sued Personally for Declining to Provide Flowers for 'Gay Wedding'
http://christiannews.net/2015/01/11/judge-rules-florist-may-be-sued-personally-for-declining-to-provide-flowers-for-gay-wedding/
North Carolina City Agrees to Remove 'Religious' Veterans Memorial Due to Legal Costs
http://christiannews.net/2015/01/10/north-carolina-city-agrees-to-remove-religious-veterans-memorial-due-to-legal-costs/
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