Less than two weeks after he filed for divorce from his wife, Kim, about three weeks since he was deposed by the Presbyterian Church, and about two months since he resigned from Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Florida due to an extramarital affair, Billy Graham's grandson, Tullian Tchividjian, has landed a new job with Willow Creek Church in Winter Springs, Florida.
An announcement on the church's website welcomes Tchividjian as the church's new director of ministry development.
"We're so delighted to welcome Tullian Tchividjian to the staff of Willow Creek Church. A graduate of Columbia International University (philosophy) and Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando (M.Div.), Tullian is a best-selling author, having written seven books on the Gospel of Jesus Christ and its liberating implications," states the announcement. more >>
New York residents will get the chance to catch a glimpse of Pope Francis later this month during his U.S. tour which will include a procession through the city's iconic Central Park.
On Sept. 25, the pontiff will tour the city's famous landmark on his popemobile and tens of thousands are expected to turn out for what will be a historic event. The papal motorcade will be a part of his first-ever tour of the U.S. since becoming the first Latin American pope in 2013.
"The procession through Central Park will give thousands of New Yorkers an opportunity to come face-to-face with Pope Francis," Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement on Tuesday. "We're proud to welcome one of the world's most powerful voices to our great city ... and we are grateful to the archdiocese for their cooperation in giving even more New Yorkers a chance to join in this historic visit." more >>
Pastors Brandon Doss and Brandon Matthews, who co-lead Cultivate Church located in a mostly white suburb of Birmingham, Alabama, are hoping to put an end to segregation within the pews with their new sermon series "God's Not White," which will address racial tensions and issues that affect Christians in today's culture.
"We want to take a very sobering look at the reality of where our churches are … then leave out of our churches with people [who] are equipped to do something about it," the pastors told The Christian Post during a phone interview. "If we can encourage other faith communities to do the same, we believe it can bring transformation to communities all around our country."
In the wake of shooting deaths of police officers in Texas and New York, and the killing of Christians during a Bible study inside a historic African-American church in Charleston, among other occurances of racial unrest, the inspiration for "God's Not White" came from John 17, where Jesus prays for believers to be united. For Doss and Matthews, part of that charge is shepherding more diversity within their own church of some 300 members in Alabaster, which they said is "95 percent white." more >>
Jackie Hill-Perry, a Christian rapper who identifies as a former lesbian, recently explained why she thinks the leadership around her was effective in counseling to her as a homosexual and believes the church needs to look deeper than just a person's sexuality when it comes to ministering to gays.
The rapper recently spoke with The Gospel Coalition and was asked "what is the most important thing church leaders can do to help people in their congregations who struggle with same-sex attraction?"
"What was helpful for me was that my leadership did not isolate my same-sex attraction from my whole person. They looked to see 'how can I help her in a Gospel-centric way that's holistic' because it wasn't that I struggle with lesbianism. I struggled with hatred, bitterness, laziness, gluttony, lack of stewardship, pride. There was a lot to me that was much deeper than just my sexuality," said Hill-Perry. more >>
An Iraqi Archbishop says he argues with God "every day" and is failing to understand "what He is doing" in the face of the extreme suffering of persecuted Christians in the region.
"I don't understand what he is doing when I look at what has happened in the region," Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil told The Criterion, newspaper of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. "I quarrel with him every day."
Warda said that over 100,000 Christians and other minorities have sought refuge in Erbil over the past year, fleeing the Islamic State terror group. more >>
With the rise of Christian persecution at the hands of the Chinese Communist Party over the past year, Chinese Christians are starting to speak out after many have been arrested for defending church crosses from forceful government removal.
"At least nine people I know have been taken away by the police and that figure is still rising," an unnamed church leader in the eastern province of Zhejiang told The Guardian on Thursday.
"We think it is a campaign targeting church leaders across the province. It can only be a co-ordinated action initiated by the provincial government." more >>