Kansas residents are outraged after an atheist group forced a local middle school to remove a portrait of Jesus Christ that had been displayed in the school since the 1950s.
"I'm sick of this," said 53-year-old Chanute resident Jack Lynch, according to Reuters. "This country was founded on Christian beliefs. In God we trust. Now people want to come in and change all that. If they don't like it let them leave."
The Freedom From Religion Foundation, a Wisconsin-based atheist organization, warned Royster Middle School Superintendent Richard Proffitt that the portrait's display at the public school was an "egregious violation of the First Amendment." more >>
Mirroring the Supreme Court reasoning used to implement nationwide gay marriage, 20 states filed a friend-of-the-court brief arguing that the Obama administration is infringing upon the "dignity" of the Little Sisters of the Poor in forcing the nuns to either violate their religious beliefs or pay crippling fines.
A Roman Catholic order known as the Little Sisters of the Poor filed a request to the Supreme Court last month for an exemption from the Health and Human Services Department's preventive services mandate.
Twenty attorneys general argued in the amicus brief that the Little Sisters of the Poor have religious liberty protections meant to protect their dignity. more >>
For generations it's been easy to live as a Christian in America. We have lived in a culture that largely assumed and supported Christianity or at least Christian moral principles. Even the deists among our Founding Fathers operated within the structural framework and assumptions that undergird Christianity. Over the past few decades, we have seen those assumptions questioned, derided, and mocked by our pop culture, media, and even our courts. What's next for the American Christian?
While American culture is increasingly hostile towards traditional Christians, it is not quite correct yet to call ourselves a post-Christian society. The vast majority of Americans consider themselves at least nominally (in name) Christian, but it is safe to say that America as a whole has largely abandoned a traditional, convicted Christianity.
Consider Justice Kennedy's take on identity in the recent Obergefell decision: "The Constitution promises liberty to all within its reach, a liberty that includes certain specific rights that allow persons, within a lawful realm, to define and express their identity." more >>
A thoughtful Religion News Service commentary notes that some conservative Christians are now troubled by the sentiment of "God Bless America" in a time of state imposed same sex marriage. This trend of spiritual ambivalence towards the nation will likely continue and is itself troubling.
Some on the Left have been discomfited by "God Bless America" since almost its start, with left-wing folk singer Woodrie Guthrie composing his riposte, "This Land Is Your Land." More recently, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright urged an alternative sentiment: "God damn America!"
Russian immigrant Irving Berlin originally wrote "God Bless America' in 1918 during WWI but didn't publicize it until the eve of WWII. more >>
A Facebook page that an atheist group had successfully pressurred to remove Christian messages due to confusion over its relationship to a city government is now posting Christian messages again after some minor changes to the page.
The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation was initially successful in getting an Arkansas city to remove religious postings from the Dispatch Jonesboro Facebook page — a page overseen by a Jonesboro city employee — after it filed an official complaint citing that it was inapproprite for the page to indicate a preference for Christianity and religion. The page has since returned to posting Christian messages.
Jonesboro officials opted to remove several posts about the Bible and God after receiving a letter from the FFRF. However, after an investigation, the page was found not to be directly tied to the city government. more >>
From Creflo Dollar to Kenneth Copeland, late night comedian John Oliver delivered a brutal takedown Sunday of a group of televangelists and related churches known for preaching "the prosperity gospel" on his HBO program "Last Week Tonight" that has now gone viral.
Calling the majority of the roughly 350,000 churches nationwide a "cornerstone of American life" which do good work, Oliver quickly took dead aim at "churches that exploit people's faith for monetary gain," citing televangelist Creflo Dollar who asked his donors this year to help him purchase a $65 million luxury jet among his prime targets.
Also making the list in Oliver's 20-minute takedown was televangelist Mike Murdock who bragged in front of his congregation about purchasing two private jets with cash as well as Kenneth Copeland who calls his private jet a "preaching machine" used only for church activities but was found to be using it for trips to luxury ski resorts and gaming trips to India. more >>