With help from a Dominican-Pakistani priest, an American couple has bought a new home for three Pakistani children whose Christian parents were burned alive by an angry mob of Muslims in the Punjab Province after being accused of blasphemy in November.
Moved by the orphans' unfortunate situation and the barbaric death of the children's parents, Jill and Scott Kelley of Tampa, Florida, have paid for a new home for the three children of Shama Bibi and Shahzad Masih, The New York Post reports.
After being accused of ripping pages out of the Koran, Bibi and Masih were tortured, had their legs broken and were thrown into a brick kiln by a mob of about 500 to 600 Muslims in the town of Kot Radha Kishan on Nov. 4. more >>
Mayor Bill de Blasio called for peace and unity while quoting scripture at an NYPD graduation ceremony on Monday, after being met with both boos and applause.
Tensions between de Blasio and the NYPD remain high following the execution style shooting deaths of officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu by 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley in Brooklyn Dec. 20. On Monday, the mayor spoke at a graduation ceremony in Madison Square Garden for nearly 900 new police officers and though he was heckled and booed, he was also met with some polite cheers.
"You can be part of the solution and that is a blessing," de Blasio told the crowd before quoting the Bible "'Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be children of God,' (Matthew 5:9). We lost two peacemakers nine days ago. We lost two heroes. They were children of God for sure." more >>
The funeral service for a Los Angeles teenager was almost thwarted Saturday morning after a man snatched a hearse bearing his casket in front of a church where his family was gathering to say goodbye.
Relatives of the deceased, 19-year-old Jonté Lee Reed, were told about the theft on their way to celebrate his life at Ebenezer Baptist Church and were able to track down the alleged thief and recover the hearse with the body untouched, according to the Los Angeles Times.
"I got a phone call, I was still at home, saying that someone run off with the hearse with my nephew's body in it. So as I got here, everybody's outside. There is no hearse, there is no body," Johnnie Fortune, Reed's aunt, told KTLA5. more >>
New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton criticized NYPD officers for "inappropriate" behavior displayed at the funeral of officer Rafael Ramos Saturday when officers turned their backs on Mayor Bill de Blasio. The mayor is said to be focused on promoting unity after commenting earlier this month that he told his son not to reach for his cell phone when he's around police for fear that he might be harmed.
Officer Ramos was laid to rest in Queens, one week after 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley fatally shot him and officer Wenjian Liu in an execution style murder in Brooklyn. The slaying heightened tensions between the NYPD and de Blasio, and officers turned their backs on him for a second time while he spoke at Ramos' funeral on Saturday, which drew criticism.
"I certainly don't support that action yesterday, I think it was very inappropriate at that event," Bratton said on CBS' "Face the Nation" on Sunday. "That funeral was held to honor officer Ramos, and to bring politics or to bring issues into that event, I think, was very inappropriate and I do not support it." more >>
The al Shabaab terrorist group in Somalia is claiming responsibility for the Christmas day attack on the African Union base in Mogadishu that killed at least three peacekeepers and a civilian contractor last Thursday.
At least eight al Shabaab gunmen infiltrated the base and carried out the attack, which was initiated while the AU base was hosting a Christmas party. The al-Qaeda-linked extremist group's military operations spokesman, Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, told Reuters that the barrage was specifically designated to be carried out while Christmas was being celebrated on the base.
"We targeted the enemies at a time they were celebrating Christmas," Musab said. more >>
A vandal or vandals replaced a baby Jesus statue in a Nativity scene display in front of a Haverhill, Massachusetts, church with a bloody pig's head early Christmas morning, and police in the area are investigating the heinous act as a possible hate crime.
Local news reports state that the statue was stolen from the Sacred Hearts Church in Haverhill. A woman in the neighborhood replaced the stature with one from her own display, making the Nativity display complete again. more >>