U.S. Army removes “God and country” recruiting sign following complaint

Christian News Network reports:

The U.S. Army has ordered the removal of a sandwich board outside of an Arizona recruiting office because it included the phrase “On a mission for God and country.”

The sign, which has been posted outside of the recruiting office since at least last October, was removed on Friday following complaints. A photo of the sandwich board had been proliferated online, drawing ire from atheists and church-state separation advocates.

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Pope: Catholics need not breed “like rabbits”

USA Today reports:

Pope Francis, after a visit to the largest Catholic nation in Asia, says Catholics may have a moral responsibility to limit the number of their children and need not reproduce “like rabbits.”

But the pope also reaffirmed the church’s ban on artificial means of birth control and said Catholics should practice “responsible parenting.”

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30 contemporary Christian music artists stand “united” – with New Age sympathizer Roma Downey?

Stand Up For The Truth reports:

On January 21st, about 30 of contemporary Christian music’s best-known singers from the last four decades will be joining New Age sympathizer and devout Roman Catholic Roma Downey for a special live online concert called “We Will Stand.” The concert is being presented by CCM United and has a motto of “One Message, Many Voices.’” According to an article titled “We Are United: The Story Behind ‘The Greatest Night In Contemporary Christian Music,’” there could be over a million viewers with a potential reach globally of 40 million.

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Warner Bros. pulls Hillsong movie from schedule

According to Christian Headlines, “Hillsong – Let Hope Rise,” which is based on the infamous Australian-based Hillsong church and one of the world’s biggest worship bands, has been pulled from the Warner Brothers schedule. No explanation was given as to why the documentary was pulled.

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Duke University to broadcast Muslim call to prayer declaring ‘Allah is great’

According to Christian News Network:

Concerns are being raised after Duke University’s student paper announced this week that the Muslim call to prayer will be broadcast from university’s bell tower each Friday.

“Members of the Duke Muslim Students Association will chant a weekly call-to-prayer from the Duke Chapel bell tower beginning Friday, Jan. 16,” Duke Today outlined in a report on Tuesday. “The chant, called the ‘adhan,’ announces the start of the group’s jummah prayer service, which takes place in the chapel basement each Friday at 1 p.m.”

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Pastor defines his identity not by his same-sex attraction, but in Christ

Christianity.com’s Ryan Hoselton penned a refreshing story about a pastor who’s attracted to members of the same-sex yet he chose to wed a woman. Pastor Allan Edwards says he believes that the center of Christianity is the Bible. After completing a thorough study of the scriptures, he concluded that practicing homosexuality is a sin. Thus, he couldn’t simultaneously follow the Bible and his same-sex attraction.

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Irish priest announces he’s gay during mass

According to Christian Headlines:

An Irish priest has made international headlines for his announcement that he is gay during a Mass service.

Christian Today reports Father Martin Dolan of the Church of St. Nicholas of Myra was urging parishioners to support gay marriage in the upcoming Irish referendum when he said, “I’m gay myself.” The announcement was reportedly met with a standing ovation from the congregation.

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Southern Baptist leader speaks out against Newsweek’s ‘hit piece’ cover story

Christian News Network reports:

A prominent Southern Baptist leader is speaking out against what he views as Newsweek’s recent “hit piece” against Christians after its December cover story took aim at evangelical Christianity and the inerrancy of the Scriptures.

Albert Mohler, the president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, wrote an article this week expressing disappointment in Newsweek for its decision to run “The Bible: So Misunderstood It’s a Sin” as it cover story to conclude 2014.

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International Olympic Committee perspective: LGBT ‘rights’ trump Christian persecution

According to One News Now:

In recently passing a non-discrimination policy for LGBT athletes, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) continued its years-long campaign to ensure that homosexuals and transgendered individuals are accommodated as much as possible through its policies. But when it comes to the persecution of Christians, the IOC is silent and apathetic, agreeing to hold events in nations with histories of grossly oppressing and even executing Christians.

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Pope Francis to issue climate change call to arms for world’s Catholics in measures that will anger Vatican conservatives

According to The Independent:

Pope Francis has declared it his mission to take on climate change in 2015, through a series of speeches, summit appearances and a rare call-to-arms for the world’s Catholics.

According to Bishop Marcelo Sorondo, the chancellor of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Pope wants to have a direct influence on the vital 2015 UN climate conference in Paris, the culmination of decades of negotiations that will help determine the planet’s future.

“The idea is to convene a meeting with leaders of the main religions to make all people aware of the state of our climate and the tragedy of social exclusion,” Sorondo was quoted as saying in the Observer.

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Gay marriage dynamic in U.S. shifted dramatically in 2014

According to the Los Angeles Times:

For the first time, a majority of Americans are living in a state that allows gay marriage. After a year of cascading court opinions tossing out many remaining restrictions, the dynamic in 2014 changed from how many states allow same-sex marriage to how many states don’t.

Now, at the end of the year, same-sex marriage is legally approved in 35 states and the District of Columbia, and court reviews are pending in many others.

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State supreme court rules firefighters must participate in ‘gay pride parades’ despite objections

Christian News Network reports:

The Supreme Court of Rhode Island has unanimously ruled that the religious rights of two firefighters were not violated when they were forced to participate in a “gay pride parade” a decade ago despite their objections.

Theodore Fabrizio and Stephen Deninno were assigned by city officials to drive a fire truck in the 2001 parade, but when the men asked if they could be reassigned as they do not agree with the homosexual lifestyle, they were refused. The men then carried out their assignment against their will, but state that they experienced sexual harassment, including sexual propositions and “at least 60 profanity-laced anonymous phone calls,” from parade attendees and their co-workers both during and after the event.

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Holder decrees cross-dressing protected under federal law

According to Pajamas Media:

Attorney General Eric Holder has issued an edict, through a memorandum [PDF], that cross dressing and transsexualism is now protected under federal civil rights laws which were designed to protect women from sex discrimination. Existing federal law provides no statutory support for treating cross-dressers and transsexuals as the law treats female victims of discrimination.

This means that the Justice Department could now, for example, consider the decision by a school or church to not hire a transvestite as a violation of federal law.

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Arkansas voters repeal local law allowing ‘transgendered’ men in women’s restrooms

Christian News Net reports:

Voters in Fayetteville, Arkansas have repealed a law passed by city council earlier this year that would allow men who identify as women to use womens’ restrooms and vice versa.

By a vote of 52 to 48 percent, residents rejected Ordinance 119 approved in August by the Fayetteville City Council, which voted 6–2 for the controversial measure. In addition to making provision for “transgendered” persons to use the restroom of their choice, the law also prohibited landlords from turning away homosexual couples who sought to cohabitate on their property, banned employers from rejecting homosexual applicants, and disallowed businesses from refusing services that pertained to homosexuality. Non-compliance would result in criminal penalties.

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LGBTQ “future pastors” to train, plan for the pulpit

Amy Spreeman, co-host of Stand Up For The Truth, writes:

More evidence that our visible churches are soon going to be lead by homosexual pastors and pastrixes. Coming soon to Indiana, more than 50 LGBTQ pastors-in-training will meet to strategize and plan for what they hope will be future jobs behind the pulpit. At a retreat center this summer, a group of more than 50 “future pastors” have signed up to become an ordained pastor in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

The retreat was established nine years ago by Presbyterian Welcome, a New York City-based non-profit working for LGBTQ inclusion in the church and beyond.

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Pakistani court orders arrest of Muslim clerics after mob kills couple accused of blasphemy

Christian News Network reports:

The Supreme Court of Pakistan has ordered the arrest of two Muslim clerics for inciting a mob who killed a couple last month after being falsely accused of desecrating the Koran. Five police officials who failed to protect the couple have also been required to face disciplinary action.

As previously reported, Shama Bibi, 28, and Shahzad Masih, 32, were burnt to ashes after they were encircled by the mob who had been informed over mosque loudspeakers that the couple had been found guilty of blasphemy against Islam.

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Pope affirms RC doctrine of Immaculate Conception that Mary was conceived ‘without original sin’

Christian News Network writes:

In one of the feasts and celebrations marked on the Roman Catholic liturgical calendar leading up to Christmas, Catholics around the world observed the Feast of Immaculate Conception on Monday, a day in which those who follow the religion commemorate their belief that Mary was born without sin.

The pontiff known as Pope Francis led Catholics in the annual observance of the holiday, delivering an Angelus address in St. Peter’s Square.

“Oh Mary, our mother, today the people of God in celebration venerates you, the immaculate, preserved from the contagion of sin from the beginning,” he prayed. “Accept the gift I offer on behalf of the church in Rome and throughout the whole world.”

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