Wednesday, April 30, 2008
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Just 6 percent of national journalists describe themselves as conservative, compared with 36 percent of the overall population, according to an annual survey released in March by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.
The State of the Media report said 2 percent of the journalists and news executives surveyed consider themselves very conservative, while 53 percent of national journalists described themselves as moderate, 24 percent as liberal and 8 percent as very liberal.
. . . Overall, only 8 percent of journalists at national media outlets said they attend church or synagogue weekly.
Almost two-thirds of the journalists in the survey admitted that their political leanings impact their reporting as the line between reporting and commentary is blurred.
To read the entire article, CLICK HERE
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
From "Swiss Grant Rights to Animals, Consider Same for Plants, Liberalize Abortion Laws" by Michael Baggot, posted 4/29/08 at LifeSiteNews.com
The nation that liberalized its abortion laws in 2002 is now giving unprecedented protection to animal and plant life.
In an effort to respect the needs of "social species," the Swiss parliament passed legislation last week that threatens its citizens with punishment for not providing various animals a fit environment in which they can interact and flourish.
Enjoying the most extensive protection under the new laws, dogs proved to be the Swiss parliament's best friend. Prospective dog owners will now be required to complete a course in canine treatment that will include both theoretical and practical elements.
Due to concern over recent studies suggesting the pain experienced by fish, anglers are now subjected to a preparatory course on humane fishing.
...In addition to tending to the animal kingdom, the Swiss government has also been busy wrestling with how best to treat the nation's plants.
The Swiss federal government's ethics committee on non-human biotechnology has been working to determine what kind of research respects "plant dignity" enough to be eligible for government funding.Read the whole unbelievable story.
Monday, April 28, 2008
From "Mount Si's gay-rights Day of Silence is far from quiet" by Lynn Thompson, posted 4/26/08 at The Seattle Times
A Day of Silence inside Mount Si High School meant to show support for gay and lesbian students erupted in noisy protests outside.
More than one-third of students didn't show up for classes Friday. Principal Randy Taylor said 495 out of 1,410 students weren't at school, including 85 athletes whose parents had asked that they be excused for their personal beliefs.
About 100 people joined the Rev. Ken Hutcherson, a prominent anti-gay-rights activist, in prayer and song that questioned the dedication of a school day to what they said was a controversial political cause.It's amazing what a difference a strong, courageous pastor can make...
Saturday, April 26, 2008
I am a 15-year Libertyville resident with a student at Libertyville High School. I am writing to express my concern about the support District 128 is lending to the "Day of Silence" tomorrow. I understand that the district has no choice legally but to recognize a right for students and faculty to publicize and observe (during non-class hours) this day in support of homosexual rights. However, one of my daughter's teachers has indicated she will not be speaking at all during class tomorrow and will simply give the class a written assignment to complete. Even the American Civil Liberties Union, in a advisory communique to its followers, has recognized that faculty and students do not have a constitutional right to remain silent during class periods.
However, my far greater concern has to do with welfare of young people. To put it crudely, human anatomy confirms that homosexual practices are unnatural. That is why such activity is attended with so much physical disease; homosexuals use body parts for purposes for which those parts were not designed. Much more serious than the physical danger in many cases, however, is the psychological damage that often comes with homosexual practices, which damage can include anger and self-loathing. For the district to encourage young people (even tacitly) in unnatural acts seems to me to be profoundly unwise and ultimately (though I know this is not your intent) uncaring. The massive study published by Jones and Yarhouse in 2007 indicates that significant numbers of men and women who practice a homosexual lifestyle, can, with appropriate help from caring people, be brought out of that lifestyle or at least learn to live in peaceful celibacy.
Thank you for hearing me out on this issue. I appreciate any changes you might make in the district's approach to "Day of Silence."
Pastor Stephen E. Farish
Stephen Farish is the senior pastor at Crossroads Church in Grayslake, IL.
Please pray that God will strengthen, protect, and equip this pastor. Pray also that God will raise up others like him - men who will recognize the fact that there is a great spiritual battle taking place for the minds, hearts and souls of our children in our public schools, and be willing to engage in that battle.
From "New York Abortion Clinic Closes Today; Was site of 40 Days for Life Vigil" at LifeSiteNews.com 4/25/08
WASHINGTON, DC - "We rejoice with pro-lifers in Rockland County, New York today," said David Bereit, national campaign director of 40 Days for Life, "as they celebrate the closing of an abortion facility that was responsible for ending the lives of untold numbers of innocent unborn children over its many years of operation. The unceasing prayers of these faithful people have been answered."
Abortion Services at 200 East Eckerson Road in New City, N.Y., was one of more than 50 clinics across the nation where 40 Days for Life prayer vigils were conducted this spring. "My family and I visited that particular clinic vigil on a snowy night earlier this year," said Bereit. "My wife and children were photographed alongside a young man who carried a sign reading, 'Nothing is impossible with God.' That is certainly the case here. The prayerful efforts of many pro-lifers over the years have won this victory. We are humbled to know that people participating in the 40 Days for Life campaign may have played a role in the peaceful closure of this abortion center."
Bereit said there are also reports that two Planned Parenthood locations where 40 Days for Life prayer vigils were held have stopped performing abortions. One is in Lincoln, Nebraska and the other is in Council Bluffs, Iowa. In both cases the cessation of abortions was unexpected. "40 Days for Life leaders in both cities are unsure of the reason," said Bereit, "but they suspect it is because no abortionist is available since both facilities previously shared the same abortionist.
We also know that in Lincoln, at least one mother decided against abortion after learning Planned Parenthood was no longer providing them. She took that as a sign from God that her baby was meant to live."
To read the the rest of this article, CLICK HERE.
Friday, April 25, 2008
From "Black leaders: De-fund 'racist' Planned Parenthood" on WorldNetDaily 4/24/08
CLICK HERE to E-mail your congressman: de-fund Planned Parenthood.
A Republican congressman joined black pastors and pro-life activists in a demonstration at Planned Parenthood offices in the nation's capital today to protest an alleged pattern of racist practices by the abortion provider.
"African-Americans are having abortions at a hugely disproportionate rate according to their population, and Planned Parenthood has no shame whatsoever in accepting money that specifically targets our community," said Day Gardner, president of the National Black Pro-Life Union.
[CLICK HERE for exposure of Planned Parenthood racist policy]
Rep. Trent Franks of Arizona appeared at the event this morning along with black leaders who signed a letter to all presidential candidates, the Congressional Black Caucus, both Republican and Democrat Congressional and Senatorial Campaign Committees and the Democrat and Republican National Committees.
The protesters, mobilized by the group Students for Life, are demanding Congress stop funding Planned Parenthood, which received more than $336 million in government grants and contracts in the most recent fiscal year, according to the organization's annual report.
"Planned Parenthood's questionable, and possibly criminal, business practices are having a profound effect on African-American communities all across this nation," the leaders write.
The undercover investigation included a phone conversation, presented in a YouTube video, the caller states that he wants his donation to be earmarked for a "black baby," because he thinks there are too many blacks and that he wants his son to avoid competition by affirmative action.
To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.
He is standing firm. Please pray for teacher John Freshwater...
From "Ohio Teacher Refuses to Remove Bible From Classroom" by Alexander Sheffrin, posted 4/18/08 at the Christian Post.com
An Ohio school teacher of over 20 years has come under attack recently by school administrators because of a Bible that he has kept on his desk for his entire career.
Earlier this week, instructor John Freshwater was notified by the school’s principal that he would have to remove both a tapestry of the 10 Commandments and his Bible from the classroom in line with what the principal said was the establishment of religion clause which bars religion from the classroom.
Although Freshwater agreed to remove the 10 Commandments, he stood firm on keeping his Bible which he said governed his entire set of values and beliefs – values and beliefs that were protected by the constitution, he said.
“The removal of it (the Bible) will be nothing short of the infringement on my deeply held religious beliefs,” he said in a statement, according to the conservative Focus on the Family’s Citizenlink, which monitors attacks on Christianity.
“Discrimination against religions and religious views is un-American. In a land where we treasure free speech rights, no force or forces have the right to expel from the public forum those who have views with which they disagree. It is what has made America free,” he explained.
School officials representing the school district, however, issued a statement of their own.
District officials don't oppose religion but are required "under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution to protect against the establishment of religion in the schools. (This is nonsense. The First Amendment says CONGRESS shall make no law regarding the establishment of religion. Having a Bible on your desk can hardly be construed as the establishment of religion. The First Amendment says absolutely nothing about schools at all, it pertains to keeping CONGRESS out of religion...)
As a public school system the district cannot teach, promote or favor any religion or religious beliefs,” they wrote in their statement, according to The Columbus Dispatch. (Public schools DO promote a religion and religious belief system in the classroom. It's called secular humanism and to deny that is either dishonest or naive.)
Supporters and longtime associates of Freshwater, however, argued that throughout his entire career he had never once tried to preach or teach from the Bible while in the classroom.
And most recently, in an act of solidarity with the well liked science teacher – and defiance towards school administrators – students throughout the school have announced the beginning of what they called “take-your-Bible-to-school day."It is, in fact, not possible for public schools not to promote religious belief. Religious belief is what we believe about God. The God of the Bible either exists or He doesn't. Public schools now operate on the assumption that He does not exist - or He is irrelevant. If He does exist, they have unwittingly eliminated the truth. This is not neutrality.
A belief system is indeed being promoted by our public schools. The question is WHOSE belief system? The answer is, the belief system of liberal educators. It is called Secular Humanism.
Please note the irony that today is also the Day of Silence, where kids and even teachers, in thousands of schools around the country, will be allowed to use the classroom to promote acceptance of pro-homosexual beliefs. I find it absolutely astonishing that teachers are allowed to actually promote homosexuality but not even hint at Christianity. The walls and halls of some of our public schools are plastered with the Rainbow Triangle Gay Pride logo yet teachers get in trouble for even having a Bible on their desk...
When did we become so foolish?
From "Sex-change therapies on children 'beyond the pale" by Pete Chagnon, on OneNewsNow, 4/23/2008
Children's Hospital Boston, a world-renowned center for pediatric healthcare, is being criticized by a Massachusetts-based pro-family group for offering sex-change therapy to patients as young as ten years old.
The Boston Globe recently published an article on Dr. Norman Spack, who last year started a new clinic at Children's Hospital that, among other treatments, performs sex-change therapy on "transgendered" children. The Gender Management Service Clinic, as it is called, defines that group as "patients with no known anatomic or biochemical disorder who feel like a member of the opposite sex."
In the Globe article, Spack details how he prescribes hormone therapy to halt puberty in children as young as ten years old, and then uses further hormone therapy to change children to the sex of their desire. Spack also lauds how he changed one transgendered child who was "destined to be a 6-foot-4 male" into a 5-foot-10 girl.
. . . Spack was asked by the Globe interviewer to identify the most difficult ethical issue he faces in performing these treatments. His response: Telling a 12-year-old that they will probably be infertile for the rest of their life.
To read all of the above article, CLICK HERE.
Update (5/19/08) from Fox News:
“Treating these children with hormones does considerable harm and it compounds their confusion,” said Dr. Paul McHugh, University Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry at John Hopkins University. “Trying to delay puberty or change someone’s gender is a rejection of the lawfulness of nature.”
McHugh said gender reassignment for children harkens back to the dark ages, when choir boys were castrated to retain their high-pitched voices. "It’s barbaric,” he said.
Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, a legal charity affiliated with the late Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University, says that transgender disorder is a mental disorder, not a medical one, and that it should be treated with behavior modification, not hormones or surgery.
“Just as you don’t give liposuction to an anorexic, you don’t do sexual reassignment surgery on men who think that they are women and vice versa,” Staver said.
“At some point in childhood," McHugh said, "many children role play as the opposite sex, but it is a social, not a medical issue.”
Still, some think transgender medical therapies for children, which have been used for many years in Europe, Asia and Australia, may soon gain more acceptance in the U.S.
“Most medical professionals know very little about transgender treatments for children, so I do grand rounds at hospitals to educate them,” said Stephanie Brill, co-author of “The Transgender Child,” which will be published in June. “The doctors are very receptive, so I believe that we will see transgender medicine become much more prevalent over the next decade.”
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
From "Lessen focus on eternity, McLaren says at Willow Creek student ministries conference" by David Roach, posted 4/18/08 at Baptist Press
The emphasis Christians place on the traditional Christian doctrines of hell and the second coming of Jesus inhibits believers from living effective lives of service in this world, according to speaker and author Brian McLaren.
McLaren explained his views April 9-10 at Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Ill., as a featured speaker during the Willow Creek Association's annual Shift student ministries conference. During the conference's opening session, Bo Boshers, executive director of student ministries for the Willow Creek Association, said he does not agree with all McLaren's views but that all youth ministers should consider his thoughts.
...Though he did not specify at Willow Creek which traditional doctrines need revision, McLaren wrote in his 2007 book "Everything Must Change" that the doctrine of hell needs radical rethinking. He argues that people who believe in hell may be inclined to dominate and take advantage of other people, rather than help them.
"Many of us have been increasingly critical in recent years of popular American eschatology in general, and conventional views of hell in particular," he wrote. "Simply put, if we believe that God will ultimately enforce his will by forceful domination, and will eternally torture all who resist that domination, then torture and domination become not only permissible but in some way godly."
The orthodox understanding that Jesus will return at a future date and forcefully conquer all His enemies also needs rethinking, according to McLaren.
Read the rest of this summary.
Tim Roach has written another article, "SBTS prof: McLaren serpent sensitive" that is very helpful in understanding the complicated of the Emergent Church.
In it, Roach talked to Russell D. Moore, senior vice president for academic administration at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, about Mr. McLaren's views. Moore says that denials of hell and a literal second coming of Christ by emergent church leader Brian McLaren are absurd and actually lead to the kind of violence McLaren seeks to prevent. Moore says:
"When a Christian understands that he does not fight for his own honor, but that justice will be done by God, either through union with Christ and His cross or at the judgment itself, the Christian is freed then to trust God, not his sword or his gun or his fists or his tongue," he said. "It is McLaren's vision of a life that consists only of the justice achieved in this era that leads to violence and Darwinian struggle to see that a pound of flesh is exacted.Christians should know by now that McLaren displays "hostility to the most basic aspects of the Gospel message," Moore said, adding that Willow Creek should not have invited him to speak.
"It is the kind of world that McLaren envisions, without a messianic hope of a second coming, that leads to the bloody utopian experiments we have seen throughout the twentieth century. If human beings do not expect a Messiah in the skies, they will expect to elect one or anoint one or biochemically engineer one. And, do not be deceived, such pseudo-Messiahs always eventually have a sword."
Read the rest of this very helpful analysis.
Apostasy is spreading throughout American churches, both large and small, at an alarming rate. We must be vigilant and be ready to contend for the truth in our own churches.
More information on Brian McLaren's apostate views:
Examine a list of quotes from his books and lectures that very clearly show him denying God's authority as clearly expressed in Scripture. Click HERE.
Read a review of McLaren's latest book, "Everything Must Change," that is rather disturbing (indications of socialism, the social Gospel and utopianism.) Click HERE.
Here is a link of a must listen interview of McLaren. If you are in a hurry, the first two minutes are the most important. Click HERE.
From : (not necessarily the most reliable source)
"Brian McLaren admits to not knowing why Jesus died on the cross, and he maintains that even Jesus did not know the reason for this sacrifice." Click HERE.
"...snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed with fear--hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh." - Jude 1:23
From "U.S. Christians urged to cancel church services and help the poor" by agency reporter, posted 4/22/08 at Ekklesia
Christians in the US should close their churches and channel their energies into helping the poor.
This is the message from the campaign 'Faith in Action', a resource developed by Christian humanitarian organization, World Vision, church communication resources provider, Outreach, Inc., and Christian communications company, Zondervan.
The call comes along with the news that two-thirds of American surveyed in a new poll say their churches are doing enough to help the poor despite the latest United States Census Bureau statistics showing consistent year-to-year increases in the numbers of Americans living in poverty.
This, combined with poverty indicators such as rising food stamp usage, points to increased demand for a complacent church to do more to help the poor, say Christian campaigners.
Conducted by Faith in Action and Harris Interactive, the national survey polled more than 2,800 adults. Sixty-seven percent of respondents "agreed" or "strongly agreed" with the statement, "My church already does enough to help the poor in my community." "Faith in Action is designed to be a step toward alleviating the complacency that is afflicting churches across the country, and an effective call to action to follow Christ's example of compassion."
Read the rest of this press release here.
"Rather than set aside an hour for the express worship of our Lord and King and then go out and serve, we are being told that serving poor people is worship and nothing else is needed."Read the rest of Ingrid's comments here.
Monday, April 21, 2008
From "Two Sides of the Same Coin" by Julie Roys, posted 4/21/08 at Americans for Truth
Andy Marin and Peter LaBarbera. They’re two very different men pursuing two very different missions. But both serve the same God.
Andy Marin serves as president of the Marin Foundation; Peter LaBarbera, as president of Americans for Truth. The Marin Foundation builds bridges with the gay and lesbian community. Americans for Truth erects fences to contain the influence of that community. Some may see them as opponents. But in reality, Marin and LaBarbera simply represent two sides of the same coin. Marin emphasizes God’s love; LaBarbera stresses God’s truth. But both do God’s work.
Fortunately, LaBarbera and Marin understand this reality and don’t fall into the opposition mentality that plagues so many believers. Too often, Christians with such divergent calls fail to see they’re on the same team. They’re like an offense unable to see that the points their defense prevents matter every bit as much as the points their offense scores.Read the rest of this article.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
A coalition of Christian organizations is encouraging students to stay home when their schools recognize the "Day of Silence" homosexual-lifestyle promotion this year – and the reaction has started coming in.
Liberty Counsel reports it has had complaints from parents and students about a wide range of misbehaviors or misrepresentations presented by schools.
For example, in one school district a principal told a father if his son was not at school on the "Day of Silence," the student would be given a failing grade for the year. In Indiana, parents were told by public school officials it was "against the law" for them to cancel the program or excuse absences that day. And in Iowa, a school board member said a student refusing to speak throughout a school day was no more disruptive than a "Christian wearing a cross."
..."It's outrageous that our neighborhood schools would allow homosexual activism to intrude into the classroom," said Buddy Smith of the American Family Association, one of a long list of organizations asking parents to keep their students home from school on that day.
"'Day of Silence' is about coercing students to repudiate traditional morality. It's time for Christian parents to draw the line – if your children will be exposed to this DOS propaganda in their school, then keep them home for the day," he said.
Linda Harvey, a spokeswoman for Mission America, told WND, "It's incredibly important that parents be very aware because things are quickly getting to a bizarre level."
Read the whole story.
Mission America has published a list of schools where the event appears to be on the schedule, as well as a list of schools where officials have confirmed they will not recognize the promotional day.To find out if your school is encouraging or permitting students to participate in the Day of Silence click HERE.
If your school IS participating, please consider keeping your student home. Send a polite but firm note to your principal explaining why your child will stay home on this day. Public school administrators should not allow LGBT activists to use our schools as a platform to advance their political agenda.
NOTE: GLSEN has been the official sponsor of the DOS since 2001. This is the same organization that gave a workshop where kids were instructed in the practice of fisting and The Little Black Book for Boys was distributed to kids as young as middle school.
Consider the source...
From "Spike in Baylor Tenure Denials Protested" by Mark Kelly for Baptist Press, posted 3/25/08
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--An unusually high number of faculty members at Baylor University have been denied tenure this semester, and one former Baylor professor believes the denials reflect the school's decision to turn away from its Baylor 2012 campaign to establish Baylor as both a Christian university and a top-tier research institution.
Forty percent of the 30 faculty up for tenure this year were denied, contrasted with 14 percent in 2007 and 11 percent in 2006, according to William Dembski, a former Baylor professor who now is research professor in philosophy at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.
More significant than the spike in tenure denials is the fact that nine of the 12 faculty refused tenure by Baylor President John Mark Lilley had been approved by their departments and by the university-wide faculty tenure committee, Dembski said.
...Dembski believes he sees a pattern in the tenure denials that reflects controversy over former Baylor President Robert Sloan's campaign to reaffirm the school's Christian distinctives while continuing to pursue prominence as a research institution. "All the junior faculty denied tenure appear to have strongly supported enhancing Baylor's Christian identity, an aspect of Baylor 2012 that many of the established professors at Baylor reject, preferring instead that Baylor become secular," said Dembski, who also is a senior fellow with Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture in Seattle. "It now appears that Baylor President John Lilley is decimating those faculty who staunchly support the 2012 vision, especially weeding out faculty who supported Robert Sloan's vision for restoring Christian faithfulness to Baylor."
...Dembski believes he sees a pattern in the tenure denials that reflects controversy over former Baylor President Robert Sloan's campaign to reaffirm the school's Christian distinctives while continuing to pursue prominence as a research institution.
"All the junior faculty denied tenure appear to have strongly supported enhancing Baylor's Christian identity, an aspect of Baylor 2012 that many of the established professors at Baylor reject, preferring instead that Baylor become secular," said Dembski, who also is a senior fellow with Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture in Seattle. "It now appears that Baylor President John Lilley is decimating those faculty who staunchly support the 2012 vision, especially weeding out faculty who supported Robert Sloan's vision for restoring Christian faithfulness to Baylor."Read the rest of this article.
Friday, April 18, 2008
From "McGarry wants absences OK'd" posted 4/7/08 by Ann Doss Helms at the Charlotte Observer
School board member Kaye McGarry says she'll ask her colleagues to approve excused absences for Charlotte-Mecklenburg students who stay home on the April 25 "National Day of Silence," held to protest harassment of homosexuals.
The annual event, sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, calls attention to name-calling and bullying of homosexual, bisexual and transgendered students. Some students observe the day by remaining mute at school; they may also put tape over their mouths, wear stickers or pass out cards explaining their silence.
So far, the "low-key" protests have been limited to three or four schools, with small numbers of students participating, said Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Diversity Director José Hernández-Paris.
But he said adults who are pushing a school boycott are likely to make it bigger and more controversial: "It's one of those things that if you make a big deal out of it, it becomes a big deal." (I would vigorously disagree with this man. Evil never just 'sits there.' If left alone it spreads. Both history and the Bible testify to this. Yeast is used as a metaphor for evil in the Bible. -I Corinthians 5:6 It works its way through the whole loaf if allowed to.)
McGarry said she doesn't approve of any political events in schools: "Whether it's Christian stuff or Muslim stuff or homosexual stuff, it doesn't matter." She said she'll put a motion for excused absences on the board's April 15 agenda.Read the rest of this article.
Update: The school board voted against Ms. McGarry's request. Absences on the Day of Silence will not be excused.
At this point, the yeast is leavening the whole loaf...
We need more school board members who will courageously stand for what it right. There are too few people of courage and moral conviction on our school boards. Please pray for Ms. McGarry - and for your local school board. Also pray that churches will start holding the school board members in their congregations accountable for ungodly decisions.
Counter the Day of Silence - Click HERE
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Paul Edwards, host of “The Paul Edwards Program” on WLQV in Detroit, interviewed pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church John MacArthur about the emerging church movement in America. Paul begins the interview by asking Pastor John to respond to a radio interview with prominent emerging church leader Doug Pagitt. In the clip from October 22, 2007, Pagitt denied that there is a place of eternal conscious torment for persons who die apart from faith in Jesus Christ.
Paul Edwards: Help me with this—the emerging church prides itself on conversation, having a conversation, so let’s have a conversation. How can you have a conversation with someone, when you’re not even speaking the same language?
John MacArthur: Let me just cut to the chase on this one: [Doug] Pagitt is a Universalist. What he was saying is real simple. He was saying when you die your spirit goes to God and judgment means that whatever was not right about you, whatever was bad about you, whatever was substantially lacking about you, gets all resolved. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a Buddhist, a Hindu or a Muslim—doesn’t matter whether you’re a Christian really; we’re all going to end up in this wonderful, warm and fuzzy relationship with God. That’s just classic universalism.
I think you know it’s most helpful, Paul, to go back and kind of recast how we view these people. He’s not a pastor; he’s not a Christian; that’s not a church. When you call yourself a Christian and you call yourself a pastor and you say you have a church, all of that has to be—to be legitimate—defined biblically. And if it’s not, that’s not a church and you’re not a pastor and you’re not even a Christian.
Read the whole interview.
Saturday, April 12, 2008
From "Wall of silence broken at state's Muslim Public School" by Katherine Kersten posted 4/9/08 at the Minnesota Star Tribune
Recently, I wrote about Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy (TIZA), a K-8 charter school in Inver Grove Heights. Charter schools are public schools and by law must not endorse or promote religion.
Evidence suggests, however, that TIZA is an Islamic school, funded by Minnesota taxpayers.
TIZA has many characteristics that suggest a religious school. It shares the headquarters building of the Muslim American Society of Minnesota, whose mission is "establishing Islam in Minnesota." The building also houses a mosque. TIZA's executive director, Asad Zaman, is a Muslim imam, or religious leader, and its sponsor is an organization called Islamic Relief.Students pray daily, the cafeteria serves halal food - permissible under Islamic law -- and "Islamic Studies" is offered at the end of the school day.
Zaman maintains that TIZA is not a religious school. He declined, however, to allow me to visit the school to see for myself, "due to the hectic schedule for statewide testing." But after I e-mailed him that the Minnesota Department of Education had told me that testing would not begin for several weeks, Zaman did not respond -- even to urgent calls and e-mails seeking comment before my first column on TIZA.
Now, however, an eyewitness has stepped forward. Amanda Getz of Bloomington is a substitute teacher. She worked as a substitute in two fifth-grade classrooms at TIZA on Friday, March 14. Her experience suggests that school-sponsored religious activity plays an integral role at TIZA...
Read the rest of this article.
In Arlington Heights, District 214 parents cannot get sexually explicit books removed from required reading lists without being accused of trying to "force their religious beliefs on the students" and 30 seconds of silence that a handful of students might possibly use to pray is being challenged in the courts as some sort of violation of the "separation of church and state." (which is nothing more than an "obscure passage" in a letter by Thomas Jefferson anyway...)
In the meantime, at this school adults lead students in involuntary prayer in the school gym, teachers are expected to take their students to the bathroom 4 at a time for ritual washing, and public community colleges are constructing footwashing basins for Muslim students. Can anyone say double standard?
Let me be clear, everyone should have school choice. If our tax dollars are going to fund education at all, that money should be sent to whichever schools parents choose for their children whether it be Christian, Muslim (not radical Islam), Hindu or whatever...
Taxpayers should not be forced to fund the 'one size fits all' current system which not only instructs children in secular humanist worldview but increasingly rejects even the most basic values (such as decency and sexual morality) simply because they happen to coincide with the Christian worldview.
Our education establishment is clearly allergic only to Christianity...
Thursday, April 10, 2008
From "New Developments on Photographers' Religious Rights" posted 4/10/08 at Family Research Council
In New Mexico, religious rights can disappear in a flash, and no one has learned that painful lesson better than Elane Photography. The company, a Christian husband-and-wife team named Huguenin, has become the latest victims of religious intolerance at the hands of the state of New Mexico for refusing to photograph a same-sex commitment ceremony.
When a lesbian couple tried to hire the owners for their "wedding," Elaine and her husband declined, saying that the ceremony violated their moral beliefs. To get even, the women filed a complaint with the New Mexico Human Rights Division, alleging that the couple discriminated against them. They asked the commission to issue an injunction that would ban the company from ever rejecting a contract based on a client's sexual preferences.
Yesterday, the commission charged Elane Photography with "sexual orientation discrimination" and ordered the couple to pay $6,637.94 in attorneys' fees to the lesbians who filed the suit. The Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), who represented the photographers, called the ruling "a stunning disregard" of the First Amendment.
Read the rest of this story.
Is the First Amendment strong enough to protect our religious freedom?
Not in the hands of men who recognize no authority higher than themselves...
A succinct analysis of the far-reaching consequences of legalizing gay marriage
From "Legalizing Gay Marriage Will Spark Lawsuits Against Churches" by Roger Severino, posted 4/7/08 at examiner.com
WASHINGTON - After years of litigation and debate, the California and Connecticut supreme courts are about to decide the question of marriage. If, as some suspect, the courts redefine the institution to include same-sex couples, they will have entered a minefield of unintended consequences — especially with regard to religious liberty.
The experience of legalizing same-sex marriage in Massachusetts, and of civil unions elsewhere, cannot be ignored. It shows that, even with the best of intentions, legalizing same-sex marriage will seriously undermine the religious freedom citizens have enjoyed since the founding.
Simply changing the definition of marriage opens the door to a flood of lawsuits against dissenting religious institutions based on state public accommodation and employment laws that prohibit marital status and sexual orientation discrimination.
Additionally, religious institutions that refuse to recognize a new state-imposed definition could be stripped of access to government programs, have their tax exemption denied and even lose the ability to solemnize civil marriages.
We need only look at
Read the rest of the commentary.
First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.
-Pastor Martin Niemöller
This poem shows what happens when people compromise principles for the fear of speaking up.
Lot was such a man, the New Testament calls him righteous as to his standing before God but the book of Genesis pictures him as compromising his testimony before his fellow man.
As sodomy and other sexual perversion continued to escalate in the town of Sodom there was a man who knew God was raised in a godly home and said absolutely nothing. Not one word. In the process of time did his accommodation of evil, his silence, his trying to get along with everyone spirit win over the town? No ! The town was destroyed, his wife died, his married daughters died, his sons in law’s died, he ended up in a drunken stupor involved in a incestuous relationship with his two remaining daughters. So much for accommodation...
We are called to be salt and light to our culture and if we like Lot see the evils going on around us and do nothing to confront the culture our end as a culture will be no different.
Maybe God had placed righteous teachers and has given you a sphere of influence not for accommodation but for confrontation. We as God’s people need to make a stand.
If not now, when?
If not for this cause, which one?
If not you, then who?
The Day of Silence is an event designed to support a lifestyle (homosexuality) that God condemns in Leviticus 18:22 saying,
"Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable."Romans 1:27 says,
“...and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error."This is God’s Word and how God feels. We as teachers cannot support that which He has condemned. By not taking a stand we take one, our neutrality speaks volumes. Let's honor our Lord and stand for His Word.
Now that prayer is gone. Evolution is the norm. Perversion is accepted and promoted, Don’t be surprised if they come for you.
-Pastor Phil Kwiatkowski is Vice President of Ministries at Pacific Garden Mission and Senior Pastor at New Hope Community Church in Palatine, Illinois
From "Schools new prom fever: Giving condoms to kids" by Bob Unruh, posted 4/7/08 at WorldnetDaily.com
A school board in Arizona has decided condoms are among the items that should be given to students attending this year's prom.
The school board in the Bisbee District voted 4-1 at a recent meeting to include the condoms in a "prom bag.".
A spokeswoman in the office of Supt. Paul McDonald confirmed the condoms would be handed out to the event celebrants, along with other items.
"The governing board approved [this]," she told WND. "They are to have what they call prom bags, which include picture frames and balloons and candy and other items. They requested from the health department if they could put a condom in the bag also."
She said Bisbee High Principal Jim Gordon could provide additional details, but Gordon declined to respond to a message left by WND.
WND has also reported a court's conclusion that a law requires children to be taught how to use condoms.
But handing out condoms in association with a traditional high school dance still horrified a number of parents and others in the Bisbee area.Read the rest of the story.
I thought school boards were supposed to represent parents and taxpayers. It seems as though they more often represent the interests of liberal educators...
From "Censorship and Public Schools" by Laurie Higgins, posted 4/9/08 at Illinois Family Institute
I recently attended a town hall meeting during which an impassioned public debate ensued regarding the very controversial decision of our public high school superintendent and school board to permit the exceedingly obscene, pro-homosexual play Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes to be taught in some senior English classes.
During this debate, the issue of censorship was brought up several times, following which I made the point that if the community were genuinely concerned about censorship, they would be in high dudgeon about the pervasive censorship of conservative ideas and scholarship on the topic of homosexuality. I pointed out that in our school, students cannot make it through freshman year without being exposed to liberal views on sexual orientation, and yet they make it through all four years without ever being exposed to conservative scholarship on this topic.
Following the community discussion, I spoke with a high school student who was covering the story for the student newspaper. I asked her what her peers would think about the censorship of conservative ideas on this topic and was discouraged to learn that high school students would not be offended by this pervasive censorship because they view conservative thought as hateful.
That is tragic and frightening. It's tragic because these students have likely never read the ideas of conservative scholars. They have not read intelligent, compassionate, erudite arguments, and yet they've formed judgments. And it is frightening because it reveals a profound indifference to the process of intellectual inquiry which is essential to ascertaining truth and portends a future of disturbing ignorance.
Moreover, to censor the ideas of conservative intellectuals who are thinking deeply and writing intelligently, cogently, and eloquently is a pedagogical travesty and simply dangerous. Who decides which ideas embody truth and wisdom? Critical thinking cannot take place in an intellectual vacuum. And thoughtful, well-informed, challenging intellectual debate cannot take place without all positions being fairly presented. On the issue of sexual orientation, public schools are neither educating nor cultivating critical thinking. Activist ideologues are indoctrinating using the most superficial of ideas.
Read the rest of this commentary.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
From "Google to be Sued for Anti-Christian Discrimination for Refusing Advertising" by Hilary White, 4/8/08 at Lifesite.org
A pro-life and pro-family Christian lobbying and education organisation is taking the internet giant Google to court over the latter's refusal to allow advertisements about abortion that contain religious content. When the Christian Institute, a UK registered charity, asked Google for site-targeted advertising, the company refused citing the proposed ad for "inappropriate content". The Institute is suing, saying the refusal constituted discrimination on the grounds of religious belief, a violation of Britain's anti-discrimination laws.
A spokesman for the Institute said, "For many people, Google is the doorway to the internet. It is an influential gatekeeper to the marketplace of debate. If there is to be a free exchange of ideas then Google cannot give special free speech rights to secular groups whilst censoring religious views."
The company told the Institute, "Google policy does not permit the advertisement of websites that contain 'abortion and religion-related content'".
The Christian Institute had asked for an AdWords ad, one that offers pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. The refused ad would have read, "UK abortion law: news and views on abortion from the Christian Institute. http://www.christian.org.uk/". Had the company accepted the ad, internet users putting the word "abortion" into the search engine would have seen an ad for the Christian Institute on the right side of the search page.
The company, however, has no such qualms when it comes to ads for abortionists such as Marie Stopes International, who have an AdWord ad that appears now when the word "abortion" is typed into the search engine. Google is the world's largest and most successful internet search engine company, with over 80 million users a month.As much as I detest Google's decision, I believe that Google should have the legal right to discriminate on the basis of their conscience - just as I believe all business and property owners should have the legal right to discriminate against what they believe to be immoral. For instance, a printer should be able to refuse to print pro-abortion literature. A church should be able to refuse to rent a hall for a civil unions ceremony.
If Christians are going to demand the right to discriminate according to our beliefs, we have to be willing to give other people that same freedom. True freedom necessitates sometimes giving people the right to be wrong.
Read the rest of this article.
Monday, April 07, 2008
From "Decriminalizing the Unthinkable" by Wesley J. Smith, posted on 3/5/08 at cornerstonechristiancenter.org
In ancient Rome, babies born with disabilities or serious illnesses were often exposed on hills, a barbaric practice that was eventually stopped when (and because) Christianity became the Empire’s official religion. Alas, killing babies born with birth defects is making a comeback in our Post Christian times. Indeed, support for infanticide is not only gaining respectability among the bioethics and medical intelligentsia—it is becoming positively trendy. Princeton University’s Peter Singer deserves much of the blame for this change. Back when infanticide support was still an anathema, Singer began advocating for the right of parents to kill unwanted newborns. He didn’t put it that starkly, of course. He always used the example of babies born with serious disabilities such as Down syndrome.
...And now in “Ending the Life of a Newborn,” the Hastings Center Report—the most important bioethics journal in the world—has just published another pro Groningen Protocol article, granting even greater support for Dutch infanticide among the bioethics intelligentsia. Not only do the authors, a Dutch and an American bioethicist, support lethally injecting dying babies, but also those who are disabled, writing, “Critics charge that the protocol does not successfully identify which babies will die. But it is precisely those babies who could continue to live, but whose lives would be wretched in the extreme, who stand in most need of the interventions for which the protocol offers guidance.”
Read the entire commentary.
The protocol is absolutely radical - calling for the murder of infants who are not currently suffering but whom will suffer in adulthood. For specific details an excellent article has been posted at Lifesite.
Friday, April 04, 2008
Their children were coming home and talking about homosexual relationships, when they hadn't even talked to them about heterosexual relationships yet...
From "Muslims' fury forces schools to shelve anti-homophobia storybooks for 5-year-olds" by Laura Clark, posted 2/2/08 at dailymail.co.uk
Two primary schools have withdrawn storybooks about same-sex relationships after objections from Muslim parents.
Up to 90 gathered at the schools to complain about the books which are aimed at pupils as young as five.
One story, titled King & King, is a fairytale about a prince who turns down three princesses before marrying one of their brothers.
Another named And Tango Makes Three features two male penguins who fall in love at a New York zoo.
Bristol City Council said the two schools had been using the books to ensure they complied with gay rights laws which came into force last April.
They were intended to help prevent homophobic bullying, it said.
But the council has since removed the books from Easton Primary School and Bannerman Road Community School, both in Bristol.
A book and DVD titled That's a Family!, which teaches children about different family set-ups including gay or lesbian parents, has also been withdrawn.
The decision was made to enable the schools to "operate safely" after parents voiced their concerns at meetings.
Around 40 are said to have gathered at Easton to speak to staff and another 50 at Bannerman Road.
Members of the Bristol Muslim Cultural Society said parents were upset at the lack of consultation over the use of the materials.
Read the rest of this article.
Thursday, April 03, 2008
The headlines are NOT accurate. A woman who has had her breasts removed and taken male hormones has now become pregnant. Both the fact that she is pregnant and the DNA in every cell of her body testifies to the fact that she IS a woman.
Transgenderism is becoming increasingly common. Many of us will be very personally confronted by transgender individuals in our neighborhoods, our workplaces, and our schools if we have not yet already.
How can we respond with both truth and compassion to individuals deceived by this lie?
Albert Mohler has shared some helpful insight for us in a recent broadcast.
A hint: Christians, among all people, must testify to the truth with both their words and their actions. That act of compassion will undoubtedly be regarded as hateful by the society at large.
The transgender movement also has tremendous ramifications at a societal level. Transgender is the 'T' in LGBT. If transgendered people are included in anti-discrimination and hate crimes legislation the practical effect will be to force everyone to participate in these people's tragic delusion. We will confess that the 'emperor is actually wearing clothes' or we will be punished...
It is interesting to note that this is happening in spite of the fact that the American Psychiatric Association still classifies transgenderism as a mental disorder.
UPDATE 6/4/10: McDonald's TV Ad Promotes Teen Homosexuality
From "Ronald McDonald Cozies Up To Homosexual Movement" by Thaddeus M. Baklinski, posted at Lifesite.org
WASHINGTON, DC, March 31, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) has announced that Richard Ellis, vice president of communications for McDonald's USA, has been appointed to its board of directors.
A press release earlier this month confirmed that this organization, which promotes homosexual business ventures, has received an endorsement from McDonald's and has the VP of communications for the world's biggest fast-food chain on its board.
"We could not be more delighted with the addition of Richard to the Board," said NGLCC co-founder and president Justin Nelson. "Richard brings his extensive experience in communications and public affairs to a dynamic team of leaders."
"I'm thrilled to join the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce team and ready to get to work," said Ellis. "I share the NGLCC's passion for business growth and development within the LGBT community and I look forward to playing a role in moving these important initiatives forward."
Read the entire article.
UPDATE: McDonald's response to public complaints deserve rebuttal.
Culture Campaign recommends you boycott McDonald's and contact both your local McDonald's and McDonald's headquarters to respectfully tell them why.
Wednesday, April 02, 2008
From "Whose kids are they?" posted Jennifer Roback Moss, posted 4/1/08 at tothesource.org
This week in Madison, WI, a high school student filed a federal lawsuit alleging school officials tried to suppress his constitutional right of religious expression. Asked to draw a landscape, the student added a cross and the words, "John 3:16. A sign of peace." Though other students were allowed to draw "demonic" images, the art teacher insisted he remove the cross because it might offend other students. The student refused and was given a zero. The assistant principal told the boy his religious expression infringed on other students' rights. Yet in this same school, Buddha and Hindu figurines adorn a social studies classroom where the teacher teaches Hindu principles to students. Down the hall a picture of a Hindu goddess greets students near a drawing of a robed sorcerer.
No big deal right? Just one student in one school.
How about we add this to the mix? This week the Vatican announced that Catholicism is no longer the world's largest religious denomination, Islam is. As Catholic countries become more secular, like Spain or Italy, their birth rates fall. Cultures that turn child rearing over to the state, regardless of religious belief, see their birth rates decline - often below replacement. To counter this demographic suicide secular countries such as France, Italy, and Russia actually pay citizens to have children.
The State of California has another idea on insuring an endless supply of properly trained citizens...
Read the rest of this insightful commentary.