On Friday an evangelical pastor based in Oakland, Calif. (the birthplace of the Black Lives Matter movement), Dominique Gilliard, shared the post with a small diverse group of evangelical leaders who decided to craft a collective response. This open letter was crafted by the collective efforts of Rev. Leroy Barber (CCDA and Word Made Flesh), Gilliard (New Hope Oakland), Dr. Brian Bantum (Seattle Pacific University), Micky ScottBey Jones (Transform Network), Efrem Smith (World Impact) and me (Sojourners). We didn't know if our words would resonate. We only knew the truth that we must speak in response to Graham's outsized influence coupled with apparent ignorance. In the end, a broad representation of national evangelical leaders agreed to sign this letter to Graham as principal signatories.
An Open Letter to Reverend Franklin Graham
Dear Rev. Graham, more >>
A first-of-its-kind gathering of over 25 different influential Christian organizations and leaders, including the Southern Baptist Convention and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (Charlotte), convened this week to discuss and trade ideas on how to plant and grow multi-ethnic churches throughout North America, including strategies to establish 1,000 such churches over the next seven to ten years.
The Christian Post obtained the program of the closed-door, two-day meeting titled the 2015 Multi-Ethnic Church Planting Leaders Summit in Charlotte, North Carolina. The event, from Wednesday to Thursday, was organized by Mosaix Global Network along with Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary's Center for the Development of Evangelical Leadership in Charlotte.
In addition to discussion on strategic partnerships to establish 1,000 multi-ethnic churches within the next decade, attendees also discussed how to facilitate the process of 20 percent of the churches in North America, having 20 percent racial diversity by 2020. more >>
Students at Pine Bush High School in Pine Bush, New York, knew right away there was something not quite right about the Pledge of Allegiance. That's because the pledge was being recited in Arabic.
"One nation under Allah," the student body president announced over the intercom system on Wednesday.
Reaction in the upstate New York high school was swift, and so was the backlash, The Times Herald-Record reports. Furious students tried to shout down the recitation in their classrooms. Other students sat down in protest. more >>
A Massachusetts Christian academic institute under fire for maintaining a policy for students and faculty that only allows for sex within heterosexual marriage has reaffirmed its stance.
Gordon College, a Christian school located in Wenham, announced earlier this week that it's maintaining its conduct policy barring sex outside of marriage, including adultery and homosexuality.
Administrators at the college also announced Monday that they will form a task force called "Life Together" that will aim to work on human sexuality issues in the campus community. more >>
Actor Nick Searcy from the hit television series "Justified" will be directing a film about infamous abortionist Kermit Gosnell who was sentenced to life in prison for committing crimes of infanticide and involuntary manslaughter inside his West Philadelphia abortion clinic.
"There are three aspects to this story that are fascinating — what happened; why it was allowed to happen; and why no one wanted to talk about it after it happened," said Searcy, who plays the role of U.S. Marshal Art Mullen in the FX series, and will direct the $2.2 million crowdfunded film project about Gosnell's "house of horrors" late-term abortion facility.
On May 13, 2013, Gosnell was sentenced to serve life in prison without parole for three counts of first-degree murder for killing babies born alive in his abortion clinic by cutting their spinal cords with scissors. He was also found guilty of involuntary manslaughter for the 2009 death of Karnamaya Mongar, a 41-year-old Nepalese refugee who died from a Demerol overdose administered by his untrained and unlicensed staff. more >>
"Sound of Music" the film with Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer is celebrating its 50th anniversary, and Diane Sawyers hosted an affecting ABC remembrance of it last evening, interviewing both lead actors. The story of a pious but spiritually restless nun/nanny who falls in love and marries the war hero widower father of her young charges amid the Nazi takeover of Austria has been universalized in global popular culture. Even children in nightmarish North Korea sing songs from the musical, Sawyer incredulously reported.
Critics, as the Sawyer program noted, have dismissed the tale as a "sugar coated fantasy," an escapist and feel-good love story set amid the glories of the Austrian Alps, in charming Salzburg, full of songs children can sing, with a dash of slapstick Nazi danger and nun comedy lathered in. Certainly it's not a serious drama, supposedly.
But "Sound of Music," based loosely on the real-life von Trapp family, who did indeed escape their native Austria after its merger with the Third Reich, contains several quite serious themes that together make it a Christian allegory about vocation, family, marriage, citizenship, patriotism and the moral response to evil. more >>