COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – HIV/AIDS, the incurable disease affecting over 40 million people worldwide, attracted less than a dozen people at an annual gathering of some of the top Christian journalists in the nation.
“‘Black Death’…I wanted to make the title of this workshop as scary as I possibly could to try to hopefully motivate journalists to run into the burning building,” joked workshop leader Tim Morgan, deputy managing editor of Christianity Today, during one of the several workshops held Friday at the 2007 Evangelical Press Association Convention. “When everyone else is fleeing the tornado [journalists] are running toward the disaster to cover the story.
“So we can see who showed up, right?” he said with a laugh while assuring attendees that they will have a “great” workshop despite the low turnout. more >>
Nearly $1 million will go toward the expansion of a global abstinence program in Africa, where HIV/AIDS infections prevail.
Biblically-based True Love Waits International, created by LifeWay Christian Resources, will use $950,000 in donor gifts to promote a message of moral purity and encourage sexual abstinence until marriage in six African countries.
"Although HIV/AIDS is a concern worldwide, the most concentrated and high-risk area continues to be the continent of Africa, where the life expectancy in some countries has dropped from age 42 to as low as age 30," said LifeWay President Thom S. Rainer, according to Baptist Press. "We are very pleased to make this announcement today (Apr. 11) because we believe True Love Waits can be the answer for the AIDS epidemic on the entire continent." more >>
Moral beliefs may play a significant role in the prevention of HIV/AIDS, a national study revealed. But religious devotion is an "untapped resource" in the whole AIDS battle, says one of the studys author.
"Religiosity, Denominational Affiliation and Sexual Behaviors among People with HIV in the U.S.," a study by the non-profit research think tank RAND Corporation, found that HIV-positive people who say religion is an important part of their lives are likely to have fewer sexual partners and engage in high-risk sexual behavior less frequently than other people with the virus.
According to Frank H. Galvan, lead author of the study, the study suggests there's a role for religious institutions to play in the fight against the spread of HIV. And the role of faith communities goes beyond talking about sexual abstinence. more >>
World renowned U2 front man and AIDS activist Bono recently encouraged churches in Oakland, Calif., and the Bay Area to address the rampant aids problem in the surrounding locale.
The singer met last Friday with clergy, non-profit groups and people infected with HIV at Allen Temple Baptist Church in East Oakland, noting the disproportionate amount of black people affected with AIDS in the region.
"We're at the epicenter here in East Oakland of a new rise of the AIDS epidemic in the United States," Bono noted, according to the Kaiser Network, "But I'd also say we're also at the epicenter of the resistance to that epidemic." more >>
Sex is a topic best avoided if possible, according to the attitude most people have in conservative Kenya. Yet a small, unspectacular church is raising eyebrows and making waves in the Christian community for laying the issue of sex on the table and demanding that churches discuss how it can be holy.
God created and defined sex, said David Muriithi, senior pastor of Nairobi-based House of Grace Church, according to the Catholic Information Service. If the church does not proactively address the issues surrounding human sexuality, then cultural and secular views, which are against biblical principles, will prevail to the detriment of society.
Religious entities, as champions of morality, need to openly and unashamedly take a stand to correct the misperceptions on sex. more >>
A major portion of HIV/AIDS care and treatment comes from faith-based organizations (FBOs), according to a study released by the World Health Organization (WHO) at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., on Thursday.
The study found that Christian hospitals and health centers in Lesotho, where HIV prevalence rates are 23.2 percent, provide about 40 percent of HIV care and treatment services in the country. In Zambia, faith-based organizations run nearly one-third of the HIV/AIDS treatment facilities.
Faith-based organizations are a vital part of civil society, said Dr. Kevin De Cock, director of WHOs department of HIV/AIDS, in a statement. Since they provide a substantial portion of care in developing countries, often reaching vulnerable populations living under adverse conditions, FBOs must be recognized as essential contributors towards universal access efforts. more >>