Religion News, February 16, 2011

    Religion News

  • Malaysia cancels concert by Iranian singer for insulting Islam: Malaysian authorities have cancelled an upcoming concert by Iranian singer Mohsen Namjoo for insulting Islam in his songs, officials said Wednesday. Namjoo had been scheduled to perform in Kuala Lumpur Friday, but authorities in the mainly Muslim nation announced they had decided to cancel the show due to a past conviction in Iran for insulting Islam.
  • Islamic group appeals Olympic site mosque: Tablighi Jamaat, a Muslim missionary movement with 80 million followers worldwide and six centres in the UK, is trying to overturn an enforcement notice on its mosque, called the Riverine Centre, after temporary planning permission expired in 2006.
  • Dutch Muslims looking for a good orthodox school: The schooling of a group of Muslim pupils in Amsterdam has become the prize in a hard-fought battle. Hundreds of Amsterdam school kids may end up staying at home next year. Not because there’s no place for them, but because their parents have no faith in the city’s non-Islamic schools.
  • UK churches call on the Goverment to act as problem gambling rises: The call comes in response to the Gambling Commission 2010 Prevalence Study. The study showed that there has been a small increase in the overall number of people gambling, and the number of individuals classed as problem gamblers has also risen.
  • Judge delays Coleman trial so defense can test new DNA evidence: Christopher Coleman, 33, is accused of strangling his wife, Sheri, 31, and their sons Garett, 11, and Gavin, 9, who were found in their beds in their Columbia home on May 5, 2009. Coleman, who worked as head of security for Joyce Meyer Ministries in St. Louis, was having an affair with his wife’s former friend, a Florida dog track waitress, when the killings occurred. Coleman has pleaded not guilty.
  • Alleged Carmarthenshire cult leader: ‘They are all out to get me’: A man who was allegedly the leader of a bizarre, quasi-religious sex cult has described claims that he committed sex offences against children as totally false. Colin Batley also denied using “references to religion or the occult” as a way of dominating any of his alleged victims.
  • 3 Massachusetts churches should reopen, Vatican rules: The Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy ruled that Bishop Timothy McDonnell didn’t justify closing St. Stanislaus Kostka church in Adams or two Chicopee churches, St. Patrick and St. George. That means the churches will reopen for worship, though it’s not clear to what extent they can be used.
  • Critics Slam U.S. Government, Media for ‘Weak’ Response to Anti-Christian Attacks: At least 65 Christians have been killed in attacks across the Muslim world in recent months, sparking sharp criticism from human rights groups that charge the U.S. government and media aren’t doing nearly enough to speak out against the violence.
    Hate Groups

  • Nigeria Taliban-Inspired Uprising in North Sparks Christian-Muslim Divide: A mounting campaign of violence in northern Nigeria by Islamic militants inspired by Afghanistan’s Taliban movement is deepening religious tensions in Africa’s top oil producer before elections in April. A group known as Boko Haram, or “Western education is a sin,” has carried out a series of attacks, including multiple bomb blasts on Christmas Eve in the Plateau state capital, Jos, that killed 80 people, in its bid to establish Islamic rule in northern Nigeria.
  • Dresden’s Battle Over Remembrance: They play funeral music and march through the city bearing torches. Hundreds of neo-Nazis on Sunday used the anniversary of the bombing of Dresden for their own propaganda purposes, while over 17,000 protested against them. It was just a curtain-raiser for a massive demonstration next Saturday.
  • Anti-immigrant vigilante found guilty in deadly home invasion: Latino rights activists say the anti-immigrant and hate rhetoric spewed over the past few years in Arizona led to the deadly vigilante-style home invasion that cost the lives of a 9-year-old girl and her father in May 2009. Shawna Forde, 42, a so called “border activist” with ties to white supremacist groups and other extremists was found guilty Monday, Feb. 14, of two counts of murder for orchestrating the brutal home invasion that left Raul Flores, 29, and his daughter Brisenia, 9, dead.
  • As Nazi sympathizer Frank Spisak prepares for execution, a surviving victim recalls his attack nearly 30 years ago: Nearly 30 years ago, John Hardaway was heading home from work when Frank Spisak, a self-proclaimed modern-day Nazi, ambushed him at a rapid-transit station and shot him seven times in his arm and right torso, leaving Hardaway for dead on the platform. Spisak is set to die Thursday for his rampage, which claimed the lives of three people at CSU — the Rev. Horace Rickerson; CSU student Brian Warford; and Timothy Sheehan, CSU’s assistant superintendent for buildings and grounds.
    Also Noted

  • Nigeria’s celebrity preacher Enoch Adeboye wants to save your soul: The Nigerian pastor, known to his flock as “Daddy,” is one of the world’s most influential spiritual leaders. On any given night, he can draw more than a million to his service at Nigeria’s Redeemed Christian Church of God. His fervent sermons, coupled with his magnetic personality, have turned the Pentecostal church into one of the fastest-growing evangelical congregations across the globe. His numerous followers include national leaders, such as Nigeria’s president Goodluck Jonathan, as well as industry executives — many of whom often turn to him for advice.
  • Study: Post-grad degrees don’t lead to atheism: Old wisdom: Post-graduate degrees, benchmark of the intelligentsia, lead people astray from religion and promote atheism. New wisdom: Not so much, says a newly published study, the first ever look at religious beliefs and behavior of people with masters degrees, doctorates and professional degrees such as lawyers and physicians.
  • Apostasy Now: Not every religion can produce an apostate like Paul Haggis.
  • Religion 2.0: Timothy Dalrymple: After majoring in philosophy and religious studies at Stanford, earning an M.Div. at Princeton Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in religion at Harvard, and studying at Oxford as well as two universities in China, Timothy Dalrymple had had enough of academia. So he plunged into the online world at, a growing multireligious website, as manager of its evangelical portal. In 2010, the multifaith site grew from 15,000 monthly visitors to about half a million with just 11 full-time employees

Today in History

Vacation? Short break? Day trip? Get Skip-the-line tickets at GetYourGuide.


(Listed if other than Religion News Blog, or if not shown above)

Religion News Blog posted this on Wednesday February 16, 2011.
Last updated if a date shows here:


More About This Subject


Our website includes affiliate links, which means we get a small commission -- at no additional cost to you -- for each qualifying purpose. For instance, as an Amazon Associate, Religion News Blog earns from qualifying purchases. That is one reason why we can provide this research service free of charge.

Speaking of which: One way in which you can support us — at no additional cost to you — is by shopping at