A bishop in the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo has said that the historic meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, the first one between the heads of the two churches following their split over a millennium ago, provides comfort and hope to suffering Christians.
"The meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill is perceived by Christians as the fruit of the cross they are experiencing. The suffering of all Christians in the Middle East bears the fruit of unity. This for us is a great consolation and helps us to move forward, even if we still have to suffer," said Bishop Georges Abou Khazen OFM, Apostolic Vicar of Aleppo for the Catholics of the Latin rite, according to Fides News Agency.
The meeting took place on Friday in Cuba, and was the first of its kind since the Russian Orthodox Church, the largest of the Eastern Christianity branches, split from the Roman Catholic Church over 1,000 years ago. more >>
Conservative TV personality and radio host Glenn Beck, who is a Mormon, blasted Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and suggested that the idea that he has even read the Bible is a "crock of [expletive]."
Speaking at a rally in South Carolina in support of rival presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz, Beck said that "too many people are looking at Trump and believing that man has ever opened a Bible … that's the biggest crock of [expletive] I've ever heard."
Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, said that it is insulting when people question her parents' Christian faith. Clinton added that she left a Baptist church at a young age and joined the Methodists over the abortion issue.
"My mother is very deeply a person of faith," Chelsea Clinton said, according to Page Six. "It is deeply authentic and real for my mother, and it guides so much of her moral compass, but also her life's work."
Clinton, a philanthropist who works with the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative, said that people are wrong to question her mother's faith, or the faith of her father, former President Bill Clinton. more >>
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry has admitted that the Episcopal Church's suspension in January by the Anglican Communion for supporting gay marriage is fair, but said that it will not change their stance on the issue.
"We're not changing — so there shouldn't be an expectation that in the next three years the Episcopal Church is going to change," Curry said at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. earlier this week, according to an article on the Institute on Religion & Democracy blog Juicy Ecumenism.
"This is who we are," Curry added. more >>
Over 150 Coptic Christians reportedly staged a sit-in protest on Sunday at the provincial administration office in Minya, Egypt, spreading awareness for the continued kidnappings of Christians across the country.
The protest in Minya specifically highlighted the case of an 18-year-old Coptic girl who has been missing for several days, with her family in the city of Samalot convinced she has been kidnapped, according to Fides News Agency.
"Kidnappings that target Christians remain a scourge for the Coptic community in many areas of Egypt. Already several appeals have been launched by Christian organizations to Egyptian authorities, including President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, so that adequate measures are taken to combat this phenomenon," the agency reported. more >>
While the country of Georgia is preparing to introduce a "blasphemy bill" that would make insults against religious feeling punishable by heavy fines, some Church and faith representatives have said that is not needed and will target minorities.
"This law is not going to protect anyone; at least not the minorities, and will be a powerful tool against freedom of speech," said Rusudan Gotsiridze, an evangelical Baptist bishop, according to Liberali.ge.
The controversial bill has already been approved on the committee stage, Eurasianet.org reported, and will now be debated on the parliamentary floor. more >>