One week after the U.S. Supreme Court handed down key decisions pertaining to same-sex marriage, released a study that shows how much religious groups have shifted toward supporting LGBTQ rights since 2003.
Something else I picked up from the Barna Group website: 59% of 18-29 year olds with a Christian background are no longer going to church after previous attending regularly.
That doesn’t necessarily mean they have turned their back on God — but rather on the church. Big difference.
Not clear on the term apologist? Get up to speed here.
Last Saturday members of the Council of Ex-Muslims in France met to launch their group publicly and discuss their mission: to promote liberty and equality for all people, regardless of their faith.
Does meditation work as promised? Is its originally intended effect — the reduction of suffering — empirically demonstrable?
Seventy to eighty per cent of people with a mental health problem in developing countries receive either no treatment at all, or treatments which have not been shown to be effective, such as those provided by traditional healers.
Israel’s government has approved a draft law that would gradually abolish a system that exempts ultra-Orthodox Jewish students from compulsory military service. The system has been in place since the foundation of the State of Israel, in 1948.
Speaking of Israel: For hundreds of millions of people all over the world, the end came a little closer last week.
The Sunday World reports that the bank wanted to see the money after Revenue Ireland axed the “cult church’s charitable status.”
The paper says the church was run like a personal bank for its pastors Brendan and Sheila Hade and Gerry Byrne.
We love coffee around here, so we took note when the New York Timeswrote aboutVox Veniae — a rule-breaking, 200-person church in Austin, Texas — where the good news includes locally sourced coffee brewed in the highly-praised Chemex system.
“But what’s really unexpected about Vox,” says the NYT, “is that what began as a church for Chinese-Americans quickly became multiracial” — something that is still somewhat unique in American Protestant Christianity.
The Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., once said “it is appalling that the most segregated hour of Christian America is eleven o’clock on Sunday morning.”
DeYmaz knows his topic. He is the founding pastor and directional leader of the Mosaic Church (Little Rock and Conway, Arkansas, and Durham, North Carolina) — a multi-ethnic and economically diverse church where significant percentages of Black and White Americans, together with men and women from more than 30 nations, worship God together as one.
Odds & Ends
Charlotte Observerreligion reporter Tim Funk was arrested Monday at the General Assembly in Raleigh while covering the Charlotte clergy involved in the legislative protests.
Funk was among 60 people arrested — many of them members of the clergy in support of the “Moral Monday” movement that has led to more than 350 arrests since April 29 and brought thousands of demonstrators to Raleigh to voice their ire about cuts to Medicaid and unemployment benefits that affect more than half a million North Carolinians.
Local government officials in Hungary are handing state-owned schools over to churches, unable to afford their upkeep during the economic recession, according to church sources.
“Churches are entitled to run schools in Hungary as public service providers, receiving the same taxpayers’ money as public sponsors,” said Balazs Odor, ecumenical officer of Hungary’s Reformed Church. [Read more...]
Eleven members of one of Iran’s largest evangelical house church movements, who were charged with ‘action against the order of the country’ and drinking alcohol, have been acquitted by an Iranian court, BosNewsLife learned Friday, May 20.
The charges referred to their involvement in a house church meeting and to taking communion wine, Iranian Christians said earlier. [Read more...]
“Why We’re Fasting” is the title of columnist Mark Bittman’s essay in Wednesday’s New York Times, the “we” being himself and David Beckmann, here described as a “reverend,” and “this year’s World Food Prize laureate.” The pastor heads “Bread for the World.”
Americans may have thought that cracks in the façade and framework of evangelicalism would show up most visibly when serious evangelicals argued whether Sarah Palin or Mike Huckabee would be the better presidential candidate.
But now we have a chance to see that other divisive issues among evangelicals beg for attention. The topic? Hell, and a punishing God’s use thereof. [Read more...]