Pope Francis has called on world powers to take action and help migrants who are fleeing violence and seeking refuge in Europe and the U.K. The pontiff made his call to action as part of a speech in which he condemned governments that refuse to accept the refugees into their countries and provide them with assistance and shelter, saying their actions are nothing short of a "crime."
Francis spoke out about the refugee crisis to members of the Eucharistic Youth Movement on the island of Lampedusa in southern Italy earlier this month, after 200 dead bodies were found near a capsized boat close by, as reported by the Gazzetta del Sud.
The pope also called on residents to remember the mostly Muslim Rohingya refugees as "brothers" from Myanmar and Bangladesh who have been refused entry in to Myanmar, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia as well as the 170,000 that reached Italy by ship last year, as recorded by the International Organization for Migration data. more >>
Various Jewish organizations have contributed funds to help rebuild a church located at the site where Christians believe Jesus fed 5,000 people by multiplying five loaves and two fish. The church was burned down in June by anti-Christian Israeli extremists.
Elijah Interfaith Institute, the organization which initiated a crowd funding campaign that has raised over $17,000, set out to rebuild the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes in Tabgha, Israel, in an act of good faith toward people of other religions. A representative for the group recently spoke out against the arsonists who are believed to be part of a Jewish extremist sect.
"If in the name of Judaism one could destroy, in the name of Judaism one should also rebuild," said Rabbi Alon Goshen-Gottstein, the founder of the Elijah Interfaith Institute who started the fundraising campaign in a Huffington Post blog post earlier this month. more >>
The United Church of Canada plans to invest nearly $6 million into alternative energy sources that it acquired from selling all of its assets in fossil fuels. The denomination views the move as a bold step toward stewarding the gift of creation.
"Care for creation and concern for the way that climate is impacting the most marginalized populations made this move an act of justice, of faith, and of solidarity with First Nations and other impacted communities," said Christine Boyle, General Council commissioner of the United Church and a veteran climate advocate, according to the National Advocate.
The church will sell off around $5.9 million in holdings from 200 of the world's largest fossil fuel companies. more >>
The largest African-American religious body in the nation will soon hold its annual convention in the largest city in the state of Tennessee.
Tens of thousands of attendees are expected at the National Baptist Convention USA's annual gathering scheduled to be held at Memphis' Cook Convention Center from Sept. 7-11.
"This will be the first convention for the new President Jerry Young. The numbers vary, but 20,000 registered and unregistered should converge on the city," said Caroline Stanfield, spokeswoman for the Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau, who told The Christian Post that the National Baptist Convention annual session has previously been held in the city in 2004 and 2009. more >>
As they prepare for heartbreaking funerals on Saturday and Sunday, thousands of dollars in donations and a flood of support have been pouring in for the families of a Florida pastor's three daughters and their male friend who died in a horrific accident on their way home from a convention last Sunday.
The Rev. Ricardo Welch of Prayer Tower Church of God in Christ in south St. Petersburg, Florida, was hit with the heartbreaking news Sunday that his three daughters: Tehira, 18, India, 24, and L'Amour Welch, 29, died in a crash along with their musician friend Antwayne Robinson, 25, of North Carolina on their way home from a convention.
Jennifer Zuniga, 30, of Venus, Florida, who reportedly caused the crash after she lost control of her pickup, hydroplaned, crossed the center line on State Road 70 and struck the vehicle carrying the pastor's three daughters and their friend, also died. Only Zuniga's 6-year-old son, Cort Thivierge, survived. more >>
An Italian Catholic priest and his church are offering Christian couples willing to have a third child the equivalent of $2,200 in Euros to help increase the country's dwindling population of native Italians.
The money is being offered by Father Stefano Bimbi of the parish of Staggia in Tuscany, and it can only be received after the couple has baptized the child. The couple must have also been married in the Catholic Church and have to be native Italians, according to TheLocal.it.
Bimbi hopes the money will help parents "with the courage to accept the gift of a child." He also said the Church does not have a large amount of money for the initiative, but he promised that it would continue until all the funds run out. more >>