A major atheist group unveiled its own nonreligious holiday monument at Florida's capitol building in response to the recent installment of a nativity scene.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation is hanging a secular banner at the state's capitol building in Tallahassee. The banner is reportedly a spoof on the classic nativity scene of Jesus in the manger. Instead of Jesus, there is a Bill of Rights laid in a manger with Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and the Statue of Liberty gazing admiringly at the slip of paper. The banner reads in part: "Let us also honor the birth of our Bill of Rights, which reminds us there can be no freedom OF religion without having freedom FROM religion in government."
The banner is being hung in response to a nativity scene recently erected at the state's capitol building by the private Florida Nativity Scene Committee. The Capitol building is open to any group that wants to put up a display for the holidays, as long as they are first approved by the Department of Management Services. Another group has already put up a giant menorah to recognize the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. The displays are all privately funded, and they include a disclaimer nearby that asserts the state's government does not support any one religion. more >>
A slick-talking fraud posing as a faith healer allegedly convinced two South Florida women that they were possessed by evil spirits, and their money was cursed with a spirit of poverty and only he could cleanse them and their money of the evil.
The only thing trickster Joe Alvarez cleansed from his gullible and vulnerable victims, according Hallandale Beach police in an NBC 6 report, was a collective $130,000.
"His ability to get into them and know that they are into spirituality and to use that as an access into their personal life is impressive," Hallandale Beach Police Det. Edward McGovern noted in the report. more >>
A Baptist pastor has been criticized by some in the Jewish community for putting up a sign at his church in North Palm Beach, Fla., that reads: "Christmas – easier to spell than Hanukkah." It has since been taken down.
Pastor Mike Butzberger of Lighthouse Baptist Church said, according to WPTV TV/NewsChannel 5, that he has been putting up a different slogan in front of his church every week for 15 years, aiming for something "encouraging, inspiring, informative and occasionally for the purpose of making them smile."
He revealed, however, that some did not take well to what was supposed to be a humorous message, and had asked for the sign to be taken down. more >>
The Internet is in an uproar over a recent viral photo of what appears to be a third grade science quiz from a private, religious school in Florida that says "gravity was designed by God."
A photo of the quiz was uploaded to the "WTF" thread of the image sharing website Reddit on Tuesday by username Dtooth0, who claims the quiz is real and was a part of his daughter's curriculum at a private Christian school in Florida. Although the man does not name the school for privacy reasons, he does write in the comments section of the Reddit thread that the school is accredited and that the quiz given to the students holds a copyright from an instate Christian University.
The quiz includes five multiple choice answers relating to gravitational pull, including "Gravity is the force that holds the sun, moon, and planets in place" and "without gravity we would be pulled into outer space." Then, there are two questions at the bottom that seem to be attracting the ire of some atheist Reddit commenters. One reads: "People who do not believe in God do not believe in gravity," and the other one reads "Christians know that gravity was designed by our God." more >>
T.D. Jakes of The Potter's House has revealed the speakers lineup for his 2014 International Pastors and Leadership Conference organized under the theme of "Branching Out." Among the keynote speakers are Hillsong Church founder Brian C. Houston and Church of God in Christ Bishop Charles E. Blake, with the list of general session speakers including Bishop Jakes' wife, Serita Jakes and Bishop Vashti McKenzie of of the American Methodist Episcopal Church.
"This is an opportunity for pastors to hone their tools and skills. Coming from every direction, they are converging in Orlando," explains Jakes in an promotional video of the 2014 International Pastors and Leadership Conference (PLC).
"This is not a conference for people who are satisfied for the status quo, for people who want to be normal and fit in. This is for the radical, relentless leader who is ready to go where he has never gone before and do what she has never done before. It's a branching out opportunity." more >>
Florida families hoping to catch Disney's latest movie "Frozen" were recently horrified when the theater showed several minutes of a sexually explicit scene.
"I was appalled. I'd hate to use that word, but I was," Lynn Greene, who attended "Frozen" with her grandchildren, told My Fox Tampa Bay.
Greene said that the film had already been delayed past its start time before the unwanted scene blew up in front of her family. more >>