A Hawaii court has dismissed two churches from a lawsuit that atheists brought against five congregations in the Aloha State accusing them of defrauding the government. The atheists failed to produce evidence.
The court found that atheists Mitchell Kahle and Holly Huber failed to sufficiently allege that One Love Ministries and Calvary Chapel Central Oahu committed fraud by paying substandard rent to the public schools in which they meet, Alliance Defending Freedom, whose attorneys represented the two congregations, said in a statement Friday.
Kahle, the founder of Hawaii Citizens for the Separation of Church and State, and public advocate Huber made the accusation despite the school districts agreeing that the churches have consistently paid all agreed-upon rents, said ADF, which has nearly 2,300 allied attorneys. more >>
Teacher and atheist blogger Hemant Mehta finally found a home for his rejected $3,000 donation this week when the Niles Township Food Pantry agreed to accept the money. The donation was previously rejected by the Morton Grove Park District and the Morton Grove Library.
Charles Levy, clerk of the Niles Township, a suburb near Chicago, Ill., confirmed this week that the Niles Township Food Pantry had cashed Mehta's check for $3,000. "It went through like any other donation," Levy said on Jan. 7, according to the Morton Grove Champion. "It was labeled as a contribution to the food pantry, so there was no reason to treat it differently. We deposited it a few days ago."
Before this week, Mehta's $3,000 donation was rejected by two other groups over the course of two months. Mehta first raised the money as a donation for the Morton Grove Park District, after the local chapter of the American Legion cut its annual $2,600 funding to the department because one of its commissioners, Dan Ashta, refused to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance. The park district rejected Mehta's donation, which he had raised from donors online, saying that it did not want to accept the money and possibly become involved in a "First Amendment dispute." more >>
An organizer of a nationwide annual anti-evolution observance has picked Answers in Genesis President Ken Ham to win in his debate against popular scientist Bill Nye.
"Cowboy" Bob Sorenson, organizer of "Question Evolution Day," told The Christian Post that Ham was the "easy victor" between the two.
"[Ham] is well read, educated and knows how science works. Bill Nye has demonstrated that he does not know the difference between operational and historical science," said Sorenson. more >>
Atheists have rallied together to offer support for a former pastor embarking on a "year without God" after he lost the jobs he held at Christian institutions.
Ryan Bell, a former Seventh Day Adventist pastor, announced via the Huffington Post on New Year's Day that he would spend 2014 "[trying] on atheism," meaning he would "live as if there is no God."
"I will not pray, read the Bible for inspiration, refer to God as the cause of things or hope that God might intervene and change my own or someone else's circumstances," Bell wrote. more >>
A Pastafarian elected to a New York town board, who may be the first of his sect to become a public official, wore a strainer while being sworn in last Thursday.
Christopher Schaeffer was sworn in to a position on the Pomfret Town Board on Jan. 2, wearing the cooking item while raising his right hand for the ceremony.
Schaeffer explained to local media that he wore the strainer in the name of "religious freedom" and in solidarity with likeminded individuals in Russia, reported Greg Fox of the Dunkirk Observer. more >>
Ryan Bell, a former pastor who lost all his jobs after announcing he will experiment with atheism for a year, is currently getting overwhelming financial support from atheists and others after revealing in the fourth day of his controversial experiment that he was running out of money.
"So I find myself, on Day 4, without any employment. My savings will run out in about two weeks and I'm scrambling to find immediate work doing, well…anything—manual labor, waiting tables, other teaching and consulting, or whatever I can find," wrote Bell, a Seventh Day Adventist, on his blog 'Year Without God'.
Atheist blogger Hemant Mehta, who criticized the ex-pastor's experiment, came to Bell's rescue Monday when he started a gofundme campaign to raise $5,000. As of Tuesday afternoon, the campaign had raised more than $17,000 and counting. more >>