Patriarch Maxim of Bulgaria, the head of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church for more than 40 years, died on Tuesday, Nov. 6 from heart failure. He was 98.
The Holy Synod announced the news to the Bulgarian people in a statement, noting that Maxim had passed away early Tuesday morning in a hospital in the capital Sofia, where he had been for over a month.
The Associated Press noted that 13 senior clergy of the Holy Synod in Bulgarian will gather first to make funeral arrangements for Maxim, before beginning the search for his official successor, which can take up to four months. more >>
More than 2,400 clergy and community leaders gathered in Cairo, Egypt on Monday for the first time in nearly forty years to elect a new Coptic Christian Pope.
Pope Shenouda III, who died at the age of 88 earlier this year, had been an important part of the lives of the 8 million-plus Christians who live in Egypt, and who have faced many hardships and violence from the majority Muslim population in the past number of years.
With the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood in government, Coptics say a new pope is needed to bring some stability and sense of authority for Christians worried about the future. more >>
After the continued push by the Church of Scotland to ordain both lesbian and gay ministers, those in the ministry are being alienated to the point of removing themselves entirely from the church.
The Church of Scotland's General Assembly lifted the moratorium over the ordination of gay and lesbian clergy in May of last year, and since then, they have been called enablers of the "dismantling of the true gospel" over the issue of homosexual ministers.
One of those individuals that was forced to leave the ministry was Reverend Paul Gibson, who claimed he left because of the Church of Scotland's insistence on adopting an "erroneous liberal agenda" while at the same time putting many of the Church's members "in an impossible position." more >>
Rowan Williams, the retiring Archbishop of Canterbury, has said in a new interview that Christians are committing a grave error by making gays and lesbians feel condemned, which he suggested might also be putting their mental health at risk.
"I think that although the Church has in recent years tried quite hard to say we are not condemning a person as such for what their sexual orientation is, and that's a very serious commitment, nonetheless there is of course a hangover, a feeling of 'yes, you're condemned in your entirety for what you are, not for what you do but for what you are,'" Williams said after a lecture organized by the think tank Theos, as reported by the Guardian.
"If people are getting the message that they are condemned for what they are, of course there's a very serious mental health impact. I hope that's not what the Church is doing; I certainly don't think it's what the Church should be doing," he added. more >>
The Church of the Nazarene, an evangelical Christian denomination, has made it clear that it does not endorse a petition presented by one of its reverends on behalf of a social activist group demanding Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. drop its lawsuit opposing the Health and Human Services "preventive services" mandate.
"The petition advanced by Reverend [Lance] Schmitz regarding the action of Hobby Lobby against the Federal Government are his own views and are not the official position of the Church of the Nazarene, International nor of the Southwest Oklahoma District Church of the Nazarene. Nor is the Southwest Oklahoma District Church of the Nazarene associated with Faithful America or Ultraviolet organizations in this regard," Dr. Jim G. Cooper, District Superintendent of the Southwest Oklahoma District of Church of the Nazarene, stated in a press release sent to The Christian Post on Monday.
Last week, the petition against Hobby Lobby was categorized as misleading and wrong by the Becket Fund, a religious freedom law group who is defending Hobby Lobby in the HHS lawsuit. more >>
Leaders at Assemblies of God USA, one of the largest Pentecostal denominations in the nation, say the country is facing a time of crisis like no other and are asking Christians to join them in a "7:14 Prayer Initiative" (based on 2 Chronicles 7:14) beginning today (Sept. 30) and continuing through the presidential election.
"Our nation faces unprecedented crises," said Superintendent George O. Wood in a video message posted on the AG website. "Let's not misuse our freedom by failing to vote on Election Day. Jesus called the Church to be salt and light in the world, and one of the ways to do this is by voting."
Wood encourages Christians to "prayerfully and carefully" consider the candidates and issues in the November elections. He urges Christians to "bring biblical and moral values to bear on the pressing concerns of our day, including abortion, unemployment, gay marriage, education, religious freedom, war and other issues," AG leaders stated. more >>