A California church has received threats and criticism after placing a figure of a bloody Trayvon Martin in its nativity scene.
Since it hired artist John Zachary, 58, in 2007, Claremont United Methodist Church in Claremont, Calif., has used its nativity scene to intentionally spark what the church sees as challenging, and at times, uncomfortable conversations.
Zachary pointed to the second chapter of Matthew's description of King Herod calling for all boys younger than 2 to be killed, when discussing what inspired him to include the 17-year-old African American teenager in his setting. more >>
President Barack Obama did celebrate Christmas while vacationing with his family in Hawaii, but he didn't go to church yet another time. An unofficial White House historian says the president has attended church only 18 times during his nearly five years of presidency.
Obama sang carols, opened presents with his family, and visited a nearby military base in Hawaii, but he didn't attend Christmas church service – "something they have rarely done since he entered the White House," says The New York Times.
The Christian Post noted on Dec. 26 that a brief description of the president's Christmas Eve and Christmas Day activities, as provided by a White House press pool report, didn't mention churchgoing at all. more >>
One polish man, usually known for his internet pranks on YouTube, has dressed up as Santa Claus and walked around the streets to give gifts to the homeless for Christmas.
Temperatures in Poland get very low during the winter, dropping below freezing. However, that doesn't stop Sylwester Adam Wardega from getting into the TRUE Christmas spirit by giving out to help others with the love of Jesus Christ. See the video below as he hands out warm clothes and food to the less fortunate.
A Georgia high school discovered an Augusta hospital's ban on religious Christian music after preparing to sing for patients for its third straight year.
Alleluia Community School, which sang carols with references to Jesus' birth in 2011 and 2012, was caught off guard last week after its principal discovered that Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center would no longer approve its traditional set list.
In a statement, the hospital said that it was trying to be inclusive of the various faiths of its patients. more >>
A New Jersey mother received a surprising and heartfelt Christmas gift this past Tuesday evening when her son, an Army mechanic stationed in Afghanistan, showed up at her work dressed as Santa.
Leslie Ruggiero, a nurse in Brick, N.J., was not expecting her son, 29-year-old Army Spc. Travis Ruggiero, to be home for the holidays, but rather to be stationed in Afghanistan during the Christmas season. It was to her happy surprise on Tuesday evening, while attending a Christmas work party, that her son managed to get a 21-day leave from work and make it home just in time for Christmas Day.
Leslie was accompanying other maternity ward nurses at Ocean County Medical Center at their holiday party on Christmas Eve when a man dressed as Santa gave her a large red letter to read. A video of the event shows Leslie tearing up as she read the letter, telling her coworkers that it was from her son who is on a nine-month tour in Afghanistan. more >>
Around this time each year, people begin thinking about fresh starts. People want to change things about their lives, and often the New Year provides a perfect time to do it. The Bible has a lot to say about fresh starts, too. The creators of the CEB Study Bible have compiled 10 verses to start 2014 out right.
10 Verses to Usher in the New Year
1. Don't remember the prior things; don't ponder ancient history. Look! I'm doing a new thing; now it sprouts up; don't you recognize it? I'm making a way in the desert, paths in the wilderness. – Isaiah 43:18-19 CEB more >>