Religion News Roundup – Tuesday, May 17, 2011

    Religion News

  • Feds seek trust of Muslim community: With subtle change in tactics on display in the arrests of South Florida imams, federal authorities hope to win more trust with Muslim leaders
  • Muslim MP gets homo emancipation award: Amsterdam politician and MP Ahmed Marcouch has been presented with an award for his efforts in defending gay rights in the Muslim community.
  • NY pastor admits embezzling $400K from bank: Jason LaPierre of Kingsbury, a 35-year-old credit union employee who also served as pastor of his church, has admitted stealing more than $400,000 from his employer to pay bills and support his children.
  • Italian pastor jailed in sex abuse case, cardinal tells parishioners: Italy’s top cardinal, Angelo Bagnasco — archbishop of Genoa and head of Italy’s bishops conference — in a message read yesterday at Mass, informed shocked faithful in a Genoa suburb that their longtime pastor, Rev. Riccardo Seppia, has been jailed for investigation of pedophilia and giving drugs to a minor.
  • Pastor charged in Minneapolis school worker’s love triangle murder: A Minneapolis associate minister was charged with murder Monday, and prosecutors described an alleged motive that could’ve come from the Bible’s book of Proverbs: “For jealousy arouses a husband’s fury, and he will show no mercy when he takes revenge.” Police claim Derrick Trevor Griffin, 40, had stalked his estranged wife and then killed Kristopher Miller, the man who had escorted her to her car after a night of conviviality at an Elks Club last week.
  • Jaffa gang suspected of plotting to kill sheikh, blame rightists for crime: Israel Police forces have uncovered a Jaffa-based gang allegedly behind a series of attacks and attempted assassinations in the Tel Aviv area, including a plot to kill a senior sheikh of a local mosque, it was revealed after a gag order was lifted on Tuesday. Attorney Gur Finkelstein, who represents the Scientology Center in Israel, was detained several weeks for allegedly hiring this gang to help him with his own criminal endeavors.
  • Tony Alamo fires attorney in lawsuit alleging evangelist ordered beatings of ministry members: John Wesley Hall Jr. represented jailed cult leader Tony Alamo in the lawsuit by Seth Calagna and Spencer Ondrisek that says they say they were beaten by John Kolbeck on Alamo’s orders. The two were awarded a $ 3 million default judgment against Kolbeck in October 2009. Kolbeck died in January. Alamo’s trial is to begin May 31 in Texarkana. In November 2009 Alamo was sentenced to 175 years in prison for taking girls as young as 9 across state lines to have sex with them.
  • Australia denies Muslim request for sharia law: The Australian government has rejected a call from a leading Muslim group for the introduction of a non-extremist version of sharia law. RNB: Shariah is incompatible with the laws and morals of civilized societies and should be rejected everywhere.
    Analysis, Commentary, Opinion

  • May 21, 2011: The harm that ‘Judgment Day’ will do: False prophet and cult leader Harold Camping has set yet another ‘end of the world‘ date. Matthew Paul Turner says, “For me to believe that those who suggest May 21 is the beginning of the end are crazy is to also believe that members of my childhood church (including me) were crazy in 1987 when we believed beyond a shadow of a doubt that Jesus was coming back in 1988. And we weren’t crazy. We were misguided, misinformed, naive, and certainly a bit sheltered. But we weren’t crazy. We had our reasons for believing that Jesus was coming back in 1988”
  • Father, son & holy toast RNB: Dumb title and a largely one-sided article about the Twelve Tribes religious cult which, the author claims, is “chastised for its fundamentalist Christian point of view.” The term ‘fundamentalist Christian‘ does not apply to the Twelve Tribes, whose teachings and practices make the group theologically a cult of Christianity.
  • America as a Christian Nation? Cherry-Picking from the Past: Christian claims about the United States’ origins need grounding in historical fact. Book review of Was America Founded as a Christian Nation? A Historical Introduction, by John Fea. “The title of John Fea’s new book comes phrased as a question. This is a judicious choice, for the author, a Messiah College historian, does not venture to resolve the contentious debate over Christianity’s role in midwifing American democracy.”
  • Argentina’s bishops have blood on their hands: The support of the military dictatorship by Argentinian clergy in the 1970s lent legitimacy to a brutal, oppressive regime
    Also Noted

  • People of the Nook: What Bible smartphone apps tell us about the Book
  • Lady Gaga: Lording it: She is the biggest pop star in the world, who doesn’t have fans so much as disciples. But has Lady Gaga’s Jesus complex gone too far?

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