More than 200 teenagers and pre-teens living on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota have planned, attempted, or died by suicide between December 2014 and March of this year, and now religious leaders are getting involved, claiming that there's a spiritual battle that needs to be fought and won in order to save their youth.
"This is beyond anything we've ever seen; it's almost like 'serial suicides.' This is not just a psychological issue: this is a spiritual battle with spiritual forces. The thief — speaking of the devil — 'comes to steal, kill, and destroy,' and this is the result," Ron Hutchcraft of Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, told Mission Network News.
Hutchcraft is calling on Christians both in South Dakota and across the country to come together to help the at-risk teenagers as Christian leaders are gathering with leaders on the reservation to mobilize prayer warriors. more >>
Evangelist Luis Palau, whose ministry is based in Portland, Oregon, has revealed that he and his wife will be moving temporarily to New York City ahead of a massive, and likely historical, evangelistic and celebratory event taking place this summer at the Big Apple's iconic Central Park.
"Pat and I are moving to New York City! Please pray! We won't be there for good. Just through the summer ... until the evangelistic festival in Central Park on July 11. It's a big move with a lot of details to iron out," reads a statement from Palau's organization that was emailed to supporters this past weekend. "The opportunities for presenting the Gospel in NYC are many and seem to come in a flash. The team decided it would be best to respond to the invitations if Pat and I were living in the city, available at a moment's notice."
Palau has personally preached the Gospel to more than 30 million people all over the world since becoming a missionary with his wife in 1962, but the popular evangelist has never preached in New York City on such a grand stage. When he takes to the Great Lawn this summer, the 80-year-old Argentinian, known for his simple and accented Gospel presentation and precise wit, will have joined the ranks of other influential Christian leaders who have preached to the masses at Central Park. more >>
Megachurch pastor Tony Evans has issued a call to Christians across the nation to rise to the challenge of bringing solutions to some of the issues he believes are apparent in the violence that recently gripped parts of Baltimore city amid protests over the police killing of a young black man.
"It is with deep regret and sadness that I have joined the rest of America to see the carnage, the pain and the anguish taking place in my hometown, Baltimore, Maryland," said Evans in a video released the night after rioting and looting erupted in Baltimore.
"To see what can emanate from hopelessness is a reminder of two things. First of all, the damage that hopelessness can do, the wrong that can be expressed by people in their frustration so that they wind up doing the very thing that they're complaining against. At the very same time, I recognize this demonstrates the need for the Church of Jesus Christ to offer the hope that is missing in so many people's lives." more >>
Evangelist Franklin Graham is using his resources as president of Samaritan's Purse to help Christian business owners in the United States who are being forced to pay steep fines and are even losing their businesses and livelihoods because they're refusing to participate in gay marriage ceremonies based on religious grounds.
Graham has established a sub-section of Samaritan's Purse to help Christians in the U.S. who have experienced significant financial loss due to their faith.
"The fund was created to help persecuted Christians in the U.S., including Aaron and Melissa Klein. It was activated last weekend, and the organization has not yet announced any numbers," Karen Dye, a spokeswoman for Samaritan's Purse, told The Christian Post on Friday. more >>
Jon "Bones" Jones, the Christian UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, was suspended indefinitely from the league Wednesday and stripped of his title after his alleged involvement in a hit-and-run accident, but the bantamweight division UFC fighter Michael "Mayday" McDonald wants the troubled athlete to know there is still hope in Jesus Christ.
Jones, 27, was arrested after fleeing the scene when his Buick SUV allegedly ran a red light and hit a car belonging to a pregnant woman, causing her to collide with a third car on Sunday in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The fighter who USA Today gave its top rank placement initially fled the scene, while the pregnant woman broke her arm, according to MMA Junkie reports.
According to a police report obtained by CNN, Jones fled the scene but returned to get some cash from his SUV before hopping a fence and running away. Albuquerque police officials reportedly found a marijuana pipe, marijuana and lists "drugs or medication" as a factor contributing to Jones making an illegal turn that caused the accident. more >>
Former Florida governor and potential Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush stated that Christians in America and abroad should have protection to act upon their beliefs.
In a speech at a major Hispanic evangelical gathering, the former Florida governor shared his thoughts on religious liberty and other issues.
"There is no more powerful or liberating influence on this earth than the Christian conscience in action and today in America it is important to respect and to protect Christians acting on their faith," said Bush. more >>