Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has said that his country will not follow in the footsteps of Ireland and hold a referendum on legalizing same-sex marriage, despite pressure from other politicians, including his own lesbian sister and fellow politician Christine Forster. Abbott added that he's probably the last person in his family to uphold traditional marriage.
"Referendums are held in this country when there is a proposal to change our constitution and I don't think anyone is suggesting the constitution needs to be changed in this respect," Abbott said following the referendum in Ireland, the Irish Times reported on Monday.
"It's up to members of parliament who are eager for change to decide whether they want to bring it forward." more >>
"19 Kids and Counting" star Josh Duggar has come forward to admit that he "acted inexcusably" when a teenager, allegedly molesting five girls, possibly including his sisters. Now, several people including former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, have come forward to defend Josh amid the growing controversy, as TLC has pulled the popular reality series from its lineup in the wake of Josh's admission.
One of the first public figures to come forward and offer support and a defense of Josh was Huckabee, a presidential candidate for 2016, who said that he and his wife, Janet, "want to affirm our support for the Duggar family."
"Josh's actions when he was an underage teen are as he described them himself, 'inexcusable,' but that doesn't mean 'unforgivable.' He and his family dealt with it and were honest and open about it with the victims and the authorities. more >>
Hundreds of former Marine and military veterans have been spared from the growing suicide and divorce rates among combat veterans who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder because a professional MMA fighter's faith-based retreat taught them that their disorder is no match for God's "blueprint" for their life.
Former MMA fighter Chad Robichaux, who did eight tours of duty as a Marine in Afghanistan and has a career 19-2 record in professional matches, was on the verge of losing his wife and family due to his inability to cope with the struggles of PTSD upon his return home from combat.
Although he was back from war, the only thing he wanted to do was go back to Afghanistan and fight. That was until he started making money fighting in various professional and televised mixed martial arts circuits. Although Robichaux used MMA as physical outlet to "heal" the symptoms of PTSD, the sport was not "curing" the root cause of his issue. more >>
"Noble" tells the story of Irish children's rights activist Christina Noble and jumps around to different parts of her life including childhood, teenage years, young adulthood, and adulthood to reveal the journey that led to her groundbreaking work in Vietnam where she provided healthcare, education and protection for more than 700,000 children and their families.
The film features three different actresses portraying Noble with Deirdre O'Kane playing the elder Noble, and does a wonderful job of communicating the no nonsense attitude developed by her younger self who never seemed to catch a break.
Noble's alcoholic father couldn't take care of her family so she was sent to a school run by nuns when she was a child. During her teenage years she's gang raped and left pregnant. She delivers the child and the baby was ripped away from her by the nuns who were supposed to be looking out for her. A relationship with an abusive adulterous husband followed, but all these experiences led Noble to make sure other children didn't have to suffer a similar fate. more >>
Days after "19 Kids and Counting" star Josh Duggar publicly confessed to and asked forgiveness for molesting five girls when he was 14, GOP presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee said he stands by the evangelical family. Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, also responded.
"Josh's actions when he was an underage teen are as he described them himself, 'inexcusable,' but that doesn't mean 'unforgivable,'" Huckabee wrote on his Facebook page.
"He and his family dealt with it and were honest and open about it with the victims and the authorities. No purpose whatsoever is served by those who are now trying to discredit Josh or his family by sensationalizing the story," Huckabee added. more >>
The decision to foster a child brings great challenge and great reward. You become the stabilizing force in a life disrupted by turbulent times. Knowing that reunification with the birth family is the goal you open your home and heart. And you fall in love.
Several years ago, my wife and I embarked on this adventure. Today our family includes two biological sons, an adopted daughter, and a foster daughter who joined our family at three months old. She just turned two and likely will be reunited with her birth family soon. Saying good-bye will break our hearts, yet we are not called to an easy path—we are called to be faithful. I can say unequivocally that we sense a calling on our lives to care for these little ones. Children living right in our cities and towns who have no one to hold them, take them to a park, or put a warm meal on the table—this trumps many things that command more attention. Children represent the future. They represent the hope and possibility of our communities, our churches, and our nation. All people, regardless of faith tradition, must come together to advocate for these children.
Since May is National Foster Care Month, the time is right for religious leaders to begin cultivating a massive interfaith movement to target this crisis. On any given day, approximately 402,000 live in foster care in the United States, and on average, these children remain in state care for nearly two years with eight percent of children enduring five or more years. We must do better than this. more >>