An international online evangelism organization is aiming to bring together thousands of Christians on Sept. 30 to create an online "Thunderclap," where a Gospel message video, along with further outreach, will collectively be shared at the same time through the participants' social networks, aimed at getting the world's attention.
"The timer is ticking down to the actual Thunderclap. The Thunderclap is what happens when the software that we use will be posting on everyone's behalf. Everyone who signed up around the world, on their behalf there will be a post made on their Facebook timeline, or their Twitter feed, depending on what they choose," Ian Walton, country manager for the African region, told The Christian Post in a phone interview on Wednesday.
After losing Senior Pastor David Landrith to an aggressive cancer last November, the five-campus Long Hollow Baptist Church in Tennessee, which became the first Southern Baptist church in the state to baptize 1,000 people annually, named Robby Gallaty, 39, as its new senior pastor on Sunday.
"In services throughout the day, church members voted 99 percent in favor of affirming Robby Gallaty as the fourth senior pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church," said the church in a news release shared with The Christian Post.
Gallaty, who is married to Kandi, 36, and is a father of two boys, Rig, 6, and Ryder, 4, holds a Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and is a published author. He is described as a dedicated biblical scholar who is committed to "making disciples who make disciples." He was previously pastor of Brainerd Baptist Church in Chattanooga, Tennessee. more >>
The leader of the Chaldean Catholic Church in Baghdad has warned that there is another side to the ongoing refugee crisis, which is that organizations that make it their mission to not only welcome but prioritize Christian refugees might lead to the entire Middle East being emptied of Christians.
The Chaldean Patriarch of Baghdad, Louis Raphael I, said "any declaration that may incite our people to emigrate is irresponsible at this time," according to The Irish Catholic.
Millions of people have left both Iraq and Syria, fleeing civil war and terrorism threats, and have been looking to relocate to Europe and other Western countries. more >>
A faith-based global ministry has initiated a "Fostering Families" program in which it's calling on over 1,000 churches in America to take in persecuted refugees from the ongoing crisis. Rev. Kevin Jessip, president of Global Strategic Alliance, said Christians are being wiped out from the Middle East, while at the same time being denied visas in the United States, and it's an urgent time for the rest of the Christian body to wake up and help.
"It's inappropriate for the Untied States of America to discriminate against a minority religion who is in dire need of asylum. These are proven cases at the UNHCR that we've seen of people who have been denied, and are in jeopardy of losing their lives," Jessip told The Christian Post in a phone interview on Thursday.
"Not only have they ran and lost everything, but now, in many cases, we are seeing people facing another impending threat, and that is starvation," he said, noting that most of the Christian refugees don't even have basic resources to provide food for themselves. more >>
Iranian Muslims seeking asylum in Germany are reportedly converting to Christianity at a high rate, and one Berlin church has seen its membership jump from 150 to 600 in a short time, with most of its new members being Muslim converts.
These new believers have been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ and wish to never return to their home country to the intense persecution from radical groups like Islamic State.
Becoming a Christian also helps migrants' and refugees' chances of staying in Germany, but the pastor of the booming Berlin church isn't worried about the motives behind the conversions. more >>
The conversation was both predictable and profound. It was predictable because I have been asked a similar question many times. It was profound because it represents the very nature of the challenges our congregations face today. "Thom," he began. "I have been serving as pastor of my church for over 20 years. I have never had more difficulty leading growth in a church. What is going on?"
My pastor friend emphasized two points clearly. First, he was not looking for an excuse for the lack of growth. Second, he wanted information so he could address the issue.
The pastor was right. Growth is indeed more difficult today in American congregations. And there are some clear reasons why this reality is true. more >>