Christians in Indonesia have united together to create an intercessory prayer movement that they hope will result in improved relations between Islam and Protestant believers since their nation is home to 13 percent of the world's Muslim population.
Five million Christians are participating in non-stop prayer throughout hundreds of cities while focusing their prayers on the government, media, youth and social and religious issues of concern.
"24 hours a day, we are praying for the churches in Indonesia, all pastors and leaders. No single hour or day passes without prayers for our country," said Jeffrey Petrus, an organizer of the movement, according to NoticiaCristiana.com. more >>
How important, really, is history to current affairs? Do events from the 7th century-or, more importantly, how we understand them-have any influence on U.S. foreign policy today?
By way of answer, consider some parallels between academia's portrayal of the historic Islamic jihads and the U.S. government's and media's portrayal of contemporary Islamic jihads.
While any objective appraisal of the 7th century Muslim conquests proves that they were just that-conquests, with all the bloodshed and rapine that that entails-the historical revisionism of modern academia, especially within Arab and Islamic studies departments, has led to some portrayals of the Muslim conquerors as "freedom-fighters" trying to "liberate" the Mideast from tyrants and autocrats. (Beginning to sound familiar?) more >>
Pastor Saeed Abedini has revealed that he and fellow prisoners in Tehran are waiting on Iran to follow through with promises to start releasing thousands of prisoners of conscience, which so far has not happened.
"In recent weeks, hopes had been high that Iran was preparing to do the right thing and release Pastor Saeed and other prisoners of conscious as part of a good faith showing under newly elected president Hassan Rouhani," said a statement by the American Center for Law and Justice, which is representing Abedini's wife, Naghmeh, and their two children in the U.S.
The Iranian-American pastor has been imprisoned in Evin Prison in Tehran for more than a year, serving an 8-year sentence. The ACLJ has said that the pastor is being punished for his Christian faith – a fate that a number of other prisoners of conscience in the Islamic country are also facing. more >>
An Egyptian-born speaker drew protesters denouncing his anti-Muslim message to the Minnesota church hosting his lecture earlier this month.
Originally intended to speak at a public school in Bagley, Minn., school officials moved Usama Dakdok to Calvary Evangelical Free Church after complaints about the content of his message.
"We asked to change the venue to the church because the speaker did not appear to coincide with school district policy," Steve Cairns, superintendent of Bagley Public Schools told The Grand Fork Herald. "The appropriateness of the conversation appeared to be more in tune with the church." more >>
A large-scale battle between Nigerian forces and Islamic militants lasting over 5 hours in the state of Yobe has left 128 people dead, local sources have reported, raising questions about how much control the government has over the troubled region.
Details are still scarce about the violence that occurred late last week, but figures quoted by Nigerian military and hospitals state that 95 of the dead are militants, 23 are soldiers and eight others are police officers.
American pop singer Ke$ha has been banned from performing her upcoming concert in Malaysia after the government said her lyrics and image go against the country's conservative values. The pop singer claimed via Twitter that she was even threatened with imprisonment if she chose to go through with the performance.
The country's Ministry of Communications and Multimedia said in a brief statement late last week that its decision to cancel Ke$ha's upcoming performance "touches on religious sensitivities and cultural values of Malaysians." Sixty percent of Malaysia's 28 million-person population is Muslim, while only nine percent is Christian. Ke$ha's lyrics often make reference to partying, binge drinking, and a sexually promiscuous lifestyle, all topics that are taboo under strict Islamic culture.
The 26-year-old pop artist, whose real name is Kesha Rose Sebert, took to Twitter to defend herself in light of the news. "To be clear. I did NOT cancel. I was not allowed to play. [sic] and then I was going to play anyways and was threatened with imprisonment," she wrote. more >>