NEW YORK — Martin Luther King Jr. has often been quoted as saying that he found it "shameful" and "appalling" that 11 o'clock on Sunday was the most-segregated hour of Christian America. Yet, 40 years later, many churches in the United States are still struggling to realize the dream of racial diversity in their congregations. How did the institution of slavery in America affect this trend, and what role did Christians play in U.S. slavery?
Louis DeCaro Jr., professor of Church History at Nyack College's Alliance Theological Seminary in NYC, recently spoke with The Christian Post to provide some context for these questions. DeCaro, who has pastored two multiethnic congregations, has authored biographies on Malcolm X and several works on 19th century Christian abolitionist John Brown, cast as a "radical," "insurrectionist" and "terrorist" by historians.
Brown, born in 1800 to Calvinist parents in Connecticut, believed in armed resistance to slavery. An ardent abolitionist, Brown is most known for leading less than two dozen men, including his sons, on a raid at Harpers Ferry in what is now West Virginia. Brown hoped to spark an uprising among slaves to bring an end to the institution, but failed miserably. Two days after the attack, Brown was defeated by Robert E. Lee, and hanged on Dec. 2, 1859, after a swift trial headed by a judge and jury who were slaveholders. During his trial, the Christian abolitionist insisted that his actions were just and sanctioned by God. more >>
President Barack Obama's administration has expressed its outrage after a temporary truce between the Ukrainian government and protesters failed on Thursday, with reports claiming that up to 100 people died in new clashes, while 67 police officers were reportedly taken hostage.
"We are outraged by the images of Ukrainian security forces firing automatic weapons on their own people. We urge President [Viktor] Yanukovich to immediately withdraw his security forces from downtown Kiev and to respect the right of peaceful protest, and we urge protesters to express themselves peacefully," the White House said in a statement Thursday.
The Obama administration further urged the Ukrainian military not to get involved in the conflict, warning that the use of force will not resolve the crisis. more >>
Genesis Carmona, a Venezuelan beauty queen and marketing student who was in a coma following a gunshot wound to the head, died Wednesday. She was shot during a peaceful demonstration amid the country's ongoing political turmoil.
Carmona's death marks the fifth fatality in Venezuela since students led a march last week against government corruption, violence and poverty.
"How long are we going to live like this? How long do we have to tolerate this pressure, with them killing us?" said a relative of Carmona, who asked to remain anonymous, reports New York Daily News. "She only needed one more semester to graduate." more >>
Jewish leaders have expressed outrage of a study guide Presbyterian Church (USA) recently released regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying that the publication is "sending Jews to the trash-heap of history."
Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center, and Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein, the Center's director of interfaith affairs, wrote a column on Fox News website denouncing a guide titled "Zionism Unsettled: A Congregational Study."
In their column, Cooper and Adlerstein said that the "Zionism Unsettled" study guide was "sending Jews to the trash-heap of history." more >>
The Syrian government is blaming the United States for creating a "negative climate" around the major U.N. peace talks in Geneva that ended in failure last week, as fighting in the war-torn country continues with no end in sight.
Syria's foreign minister, Walid al-Moallem, said that the American government tried to "create a very negative climate for dialogue in Geneva," The Associated Press reported on Sunday.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has repeatedly insisted that the only way forward for the Middle Eastern country is if Syrian President Bashar al-Assad steps down, something which the leader has not given any indication that he is considering. Instead, the nearly three-year-old war between Assad's forces and rebel factions seeking to remove him from power continues. more >>
The New York Times has finally found a victim of Islamic aggression in Nigeria worth reporting on: homosexuals. In a big spread complete with pictures appearing last week, the NYT's Adam Nossiter wrote "Wielding Whip and a Hard New Law, Nigeria Tries to 'Sanitize' Itself of Gays."
While it's all well and good to expose the persecution of any group, why does the NYT remain silent about the much more endemic and savage jihad to "sanitize" Nigeria of Christians-a jihad that has seen countless Christians butchered and countless churches destroyed?
A 2012 meeting of Nigerian church heads concluded that "the pattern of these killings [of Christians] does suggest to us a systematic ethnic and religious cleansing." more >>