Thousands of mourners gathered in Charleston, South Carolina, on Friday for the funeral of Democratic State Sen. Clementa Pinckney, pastor of the Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, as President Baraxk Obama delivered an impassioned eulogy for the respected leader he remembered as "a man of God who lived by faith."
Grieving relatives, Emanuel AME church members, politicians and members of the community were present at the College of Charleston's TD Arena to pay their respects more than one week after Pinckney and eight others were gunned down during a Bible study at his church.
"Giving all praise and honor to God," Obama began. "The Bible calls us to hope, to persevere and have faith in things not seen. They were still living by faith when they died, Scripture tells us. They did not receive the things promised, they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on Earth." more >>
President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy of the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, the South Carolina state senator killed during a Bible study last week at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, and at the conclusion of his remarks, sang the negro spiritual "Amazing Grace."
Obama made "grace" a major part of his speech after acknowledging the work and accomplishments of the-late Pinckney, who was also the pastor of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and whom the president called "a man of God who lived by faith."
"We are here today to remember a man of God who lived by faith. A man who believed in things not seen. A man who believed there were better days ahead, off in the distance. A man of service who persevered knowing full well he would not receive all those things he was promised, because he believed his efforts would provide a better life for those who followed," Obama said, reports CNN. more >>
Pastor Saeed Abedini has just passed a thousand and one nights in Iranian captivity. This U.S. citizen now has the unenviable distinction of having suffered more than twice as long as the 52 hostages held by Iran for 444 days in 1979-81. What is his "crime?" He is accused of activities against the regime.
Our colleague, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins has continued to speak out to advocate the release of Pastor Abedini. Tony has made the broader case for religious freedom as a centerpiece for U.S. foreign policy. This, because we see that nations where people murder their neighbors who worship differently are economically backward and are seedbeds for international terrorism. A prestigious academic journal confirms this. This was, tragically, the missing component in our policy toward Afghanistan and Iraq.
Advocates for Pastor Abedini's release appreciate President Obama's visit to the imprisoned Christian's family in Idaho. And Pastor Abedini and his family have publicly thanked Mr. Obama. more >>
At least 27 people have been killed in a mass shooting at a Tunisian beachside hotel in the popular resort of Sousse on Friday, just hours following news that a man was decapitated by suspected Islamic terrorists in France, and news of a separate bombing in Kuwait. British Prime Minister David Cameron has condemned the "atrocities," warning that terror attacks across the world are on the rise.
"This is a threat that faces all of us. These events have taken place in Tunisia and in France but they can take place anywhere. We all face this threat," Cameron added, according to The Guardian.
Reuters reported that foreign tourists are among the 27 people killed at the Imperial Marhaba hotel, when at least one gunman opened fire with a Kalashnikov assault rifle. The shooter was apparently killed in an exchange of gunfire with police, who are searching the area for other suspects. more >>
The pastor of a North Carolina church that the Charlotte Fire Department says was intentionally set ablaze in an arson attack on Wednesday, said his congregation has forgiven whoever is responsible, even though police say it could be a hate crime.
Pastor Mannix Kinsey of Briar Creek Road Baptist Church, a primarily black church in East Charlotte, helplessly watched part of his church burn down early Wednesday as 75 local firefighters struggled for an hour to get it under control.
After last Wednesday night's Bible study at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston ended with nine people losing their lives in a violent act of racial hatred, over 100 worshipers gathered in the very same room just one week later to continue the church's Wednesday night tradition.
Interim pastor Norvel Goff Sr., who's standing in for slain Rev. Clementa Pinckney, said that while Wednesday night Bible studies would never be the same for members of the church, he believed that faith had brought the 100-strong crowd to the same basement room only a week later to continue worshipping the Lord.
"This territory belongs to God," Goff told the crowd at the Bible study, as quoted by CNN. "Bible study will continue. But because of what happened, we will never be the same." more >>