A Brazilian billionaire preacher inaugurated a massive church building in Sao Paulo, Brazil last week, designed to be a $300 million replica of the original Temple of Solomon, as noted in the Bible's Old Testament.
The temple, which takes over an entire city block, is an 11-story building twice the size of the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue overlooking Rio de Janeiro, and is complete with stone from Israel and a helipad for its founder's, Edir Macedo, convenience.
"This temple is not about a denominational project, but something so glorious and spiritual that transcends reason itself," said Macedo, according to the Temple of Solomon's website. "It will certainly awaken the dormant faith of those who are cold and will prompt a national and worldwide revival." more >>
The Germans were relentless and merciless in their crushing 7-1 defeat of Brazil in their World Cup semi-final match, which left fans in the host country shell-shocked and in tears after witnessing the most stunning defeat the country has ever been dealt in 94 years of Brazilian soccer.
"Huge boos from the crowd as they jeered Brazil off the field - with the majority of the team collapsing in tears of embarrassment and humiliation at the final whistle," noted the Daily Mail's Dan Ripley.
"Germany cruise into the final of the World Cup with one of the most devastating victories I have ever seen. Make no mistake though, this game will be remembered more for Brazil's total capitulation rather than Germany's stunning performance," he added. more >>
While the goalkeeper for Costa Rica's national soccer team is being revered for leading his team's victory against Greece on Sunday, Keylor Navas is giving glory to God and credits his efforts to his strong Christian faith.
Navas helped Costa Rica secure a spot in the World Cup's quarterfinals for the first time in the team's history after knocking away a penalty kick from Greece in a move that he says was made for God, his family, teammates and country.
"I talk to God and ask Him to help me. I tell Him that everything I say and do in the game is for His glory and I ask Him to put me an angel on each side, in each post, and behind me so that everything can turn out fine," said Navas, according to Spanish news outlet Protestante Digital. more >>
An Apostolic church in Brazil has atrracted controversy online after a photo was posted on their Facebook account in which the pastor is seen praying and kneeling on the floor over 110 lbs. of anointed salt.
Apostolic Church Full of God's Throne based in Sao Paulo held a service last week where the practice took place. The criticism was triggered by the image of the church's lead pastor Agenor Duke, as he is shown surrounded by other kneeling church members who then marched over the salt barefoot as they fervently prayed.
"This is a witchcraft practice, very different from what the Scripture reflects on the use of salt," commented Jonathan Martinez, a Facebook user on the church's account. "That method is only used for witchcraft and for calling upon negative things." more >>
The Brazilian Bible Society will distribute four million Bibles in an effort to reach the multitude of soccer fans that will trek to Brazil to attend the FIFA World Cup.
Leaders of the international outreach organization say over half a million fans from around the world will descend upon Brazil to join three million local fans, all of whom they hope to share the Gospel with.
"Brazilians are football-mad and their obsession with football will reach fever pitch over the next few weeks …," said Dr. Rudi Zimmer of the Bible Society of Brazil, reports the United Bible Societies. "We want the Bible to have a prominent presence amid all the excitement. It's an unprecedented opportunity for churches and Christians here to share God's Word with local and foreign fans, and we want to equip and encourage them to do that." more >>
Close to 3,000 families camped out near the World Cup stadium in Sao Paulo a day before the soccer tournament in Brazil begins, trying to raise global attention for what they say is a lack of support they have received from the government.
"I always liked the World Cup. I was Brazilian through and through," said one woman at the encampment, CNN reported. "But this Cup and the stadium are making people angry."
The World Cup, which begins June 12 and ends July 13, will bring together 32 nations to compete for the trophy. The organization has been plagued by protests from activists who have said that the country spent a total of $11 billion for the competition, while many social services have been neglected. more >>