The Rev. Chris Hill, senior pastor of The Potter's House of Denver in Colorado, has shared that members of his congregation who were once critical of the presence of armed guards in the sanctuary now understand the necessity of such security measures in the wake of the Charleston church massacre.
The Charleston shooting was certainly not the first time a church had been targeted by a gunman. The Christian Post reported in 2012 that a former employee of Creflo Dollar's World Changers Church International in College Park, Georgia, had walked into an early morning Bible study and shot a member point blank while he prayed. In 2009, late-term abortion Dr. George Tiller was murdered while serving as an usher at Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita, Kansas. In fact, Carl Chinn, a former Focus on the Family safety manager and a church security expert, tracks "deadly force incidents" at faith-based organizations. According to Chinn's data, there have been 971 such incidents between Jan. 1, 1999 and Feb. 15 of this year.
"You are not safe on a plane. You are not safe in an elementary school. You are not safe in a high school. You are not safe in a movie theater. Guess what? You are not safe in a church," Hill told The New York Times in a "Protecting the Sanctuary" video feature on The Potter's House of Denver published this week. more >>
Republican Senator from Kentucky, presidential candidate and noted state's rights proponent Rand Paul expressed support for the federal government playing a role in restoring voting rights for former felons.
Senator Paul, a candidate for the Republican nomination for the 2016 president election, told a bipartisan group of justice system advocates Wednesday morning about a bill he supports to help restore voting rights to ex-felons.
"Now some have objected to this and said 'well states control voting rights.' It's a little bit complicated actually. The [Supreme Court] has looked at this question," said Paul. more >>
Discreet encounters promised but in reality, embarrassment was delivered. "Ashley Madison" has a motto that will make your skin crawl: "Life is short. Have an affair." It's the number one dating website for cheaters seeking affairs.
A group of hackers, who call themselves "The Impact Group", are demanding the site and other hook-up sites including Cougar and Established Men shut-down. If they are not, they are promising to release the full details including – names, addresses, and sexual fantasies – of Ashley Madison's 37 million users. Before getting discouraged by such high numbers, consider their claiming to have "37 million users" as a marketing technique (read: potential lie). In reality, it isn't known how many of the users active or even real people. And of course, the site functions on the basis of deception. So it would be unwise to trust any of their claims.
As Christians, it's interesting to see that culturally while our sexual ethics may be evolving – our thoughts on cheaters and adulterers remain steadfastly negative. A recent Gallop poll showed that in the last fifteen years, moral support continues to grow for once taboo subjects including divorce, having children outside of wedlock and polygamy. Yet, in the eyes of many Americans, adultery remains a moral taboo. more >>
Republican Party Chairman Reince Priebus blasted comments by Democratic presidential candidate Martin O'Malley suggesting that climate change is responsible for the rise of terror group ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
"Whether it's the weak Obama-Clinton nuclear deal that paves the way for Iran to obtain an atomic bomb or Martin O'Malley's absurd claim that climate change is responsible for ISIS, it's abundantly clear no one in the Democratic Party has the foreign policy vision to keep America safe," Priebus said in a statement, according to Fox News.
The remarks refer to earlier comments made by former Maryland Governor O'Malley in an interview with Bloomberg Television, when the Democratic hopeful suggested that climate change in the Middle East created conditions that facilitated the rise of ISIS. more >>
Government policies have been ineffective, while Christian schools have been effective, in reducing the achievement gap in education, according to a published study by William Jeynes, a senior fellow at the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton and a professor at California State University-Long Beach.
The education gap that exists between white and African American students is formally referred to as the achievement gap. It highlights the disparity between school performance that is tied to race and shows up in test scores, graduation rates, and college enrollment rates.
Jeynes pointed to factors, such as faith and family dynamics in the July issue of Education & Urban Society as helping to close that gap, especially noting "religious faith among children of color has a considerable impact in alleviating the achievement gap." more >>
Over 500 Christians rallied in support of religious freedom in Alabama on Saturday after a Christian flag that once flew over a local police department was forcibly removed amid threats of legal action from the nation's largest atheist organization.
The mayor of Glenco said he had no choice but to remove the Christian flag from outside the police department after the city received a complaint letter from the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation.
"That would just about ruin us. … That's what they do, they pick on these smaller towns that can't defend ourselves," said Mayor Charles Gilchrist to WBRC Fox 6, noting the decision was made to remove the flag last month to avoid the costs of a potentially lengthy litigation. more >>