Here are The Christian Post's "Top 10" politics stories for 2013:
10. "Unstuck Movement" Highlights Broken International Adoption System
Problems have plagued the system of international adoption at least since 2009, after the U.S. State Department began encouraging developing nations to adopt the U.N.'s Hague Treaty. The problems became so acute that international adoption advocates and adoptive parents began fighting back. more >>
In a generous act of kindness, Pope Francis gave 2,000 unsuspecting immigrants, who stay at a shelter within close proximity to the Vatican, practical Christmas gift packages that included a signed card, postal stamps, a pre-paid international calling card, and a free day-pass for Rome's metro.
The immigrants stay at the Dono di Maria home that was founded by Mother Teresa 25 years ago under Pope John Paul II's blessing. Many of them arrived in Rome with little to no means, after fleeing from regions in Africa afflicted by armed conflict or from poverty and human trafficking in Asia and Eastern Europe.
"The Pope is very familiar with our work here and understands the realities that people face ... the guests were very happy," said Sister Michelle, the superior of Mother Teresa's Missionaries of Charity in Rome, according to Catholic News Agency. more >>
House passage of the "Ryan-Murray Budget" has cleared a path for immigration reform by making more room on the legislative calendar and demonstrating that foes of current immigration reform efforts are in a weakened position.
The Heritage Foundation, one of the leading voices opposing immigration reform, opposed the budget deal. Heritage Action, Heritage Foundation's associated political action committee, warned House Republicans they would "score" the vote. This means that when Heritage releases its "scorecard" ahead of elections, members who voted in favor of the bill will receive a score describing them as less conservative. Opponents, particularly in primary elections, can use that score to describe the member as insufficiently conservative.
Even with that threat, though, only 62 Republicans voted against the bill; 169 Republicans voted for it. more >>
The small tent, about the width of a subway car, sits on the National Mall in the shadow of the nation's Capitol. In a town where power and influence is determined by money and access, what happens inside this tent might seem irrelevant. But over the last few weeks this tiny structure has become a potent challenge to the ways of Washington.
Each day, people arrive at the tent to fast and pray for immigration reform. Some are powerful political actors and cultural icons. The President and First Lady, Cabinet Secretaries, several celebrities, and members of Congress from both parties have all visited.
However, most visitors are far less well known, though their stories are no less compelling. Some are undocumented immigrants themselves with heartbreaking stories to tell-and most are people of faith. Some have close relatives who are undocumented. Others testify to their own immigrant histories. Many are people whose faith inspires them to support common sense immigration reform. more >>
The Evangelical Immigration Table have announced a print and radio ad campaign asking supporters to pray for God to help Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) find a solution to the broken immigration system.
The ads will appear in the Washington D.C. daily free newspaper "Express," on radio stations in the D.C., North Carolina and Dallas-Fort Worth area in Texas, and on Spanish-language radio stations in Southern California. They also bring the Evangelical Immigration Table's total paid media efforts at over $1 million. more >>
Four immigration activists ended their 22-day fast that was aimed to pressure lawmakers to overhaul the nation's immigration system, while a new group of advocates took their place to continue the call for an immediate vote on reform.
The demonstrators announced on Tuesday that they were ending their hunger strike after unsuccessfully, for now, prompting House Speaker John Boehner to pass immigration reform legislation.
The new group that has taken their place now includes Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-Mass.), Rev. Gabriel Salguero, president of the National Latino Evangelical Coalition and Rev. Jim Wallis of Sojourners among others. more >>