National Religious Broadcasters President & CEO Dr. Frank Wright asked members of Congress investigating the IRS over its alleged inappropriate scrutiny of conservative and faith-based groups to focus on First Amendment protection for such organizations.
"As Congress investigates these incidents at the IRS, and others that may surface in the days ahead, I ask that you emphasize the First Amendment rights of non-profit religious organizations and churches, which gives them constitutional authority to operate free from government entanglement," wrote Wright in a letter sent to House Speaker John Boehner and other Congressional leaders, including House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.
"Pernicious targeting of faith-based organizations by any state actor must not be tolerated," Wright added. "These IRS cases before the nation today appear to be just such entangling, oppressive, and constitutionally unsound situations that must be protected against." more >>
Editor's Note: The new "Faith & Work" series will profile Christians who are influencing the culture in their professions. The series will examine how Christians can apply the Gospel into their lives and develop a Gospel-centered worldview to positively influence the common good and better serve their profession and industry.
Holly Hoffman, a finalist who finished fourth in CBS's reality television show, "Survivor Nicaragua," just released a new book, Your Winner Within, Own your Power, Your Attitude and Your Life, to help others "survive in the real world."
"What I learned from being on the reality show, I have been able to apply to the real world of survival," she says. From her experience on the show, she learned what really mattered to her – her faith, her family and friends, and finding an inner strength she didn't know she had. "Life is not always fair," she says. "My faith makes me realize that there is always a reason [for a life experience] and if God brought you to it, He will get you through it." more >>
Seattle-based megachurch pastor Mark Driscoll took his latest criticism from some within the Christian community about the way he handled the topic of the earth's environment while joking at a recent Christian leadership conference as an opportunity to write about his environmentally conscious family and how humor can be found in parts of the Bible.
One point of contention about his talk at the Catalyst Conference in Dallas was his statement (joke) in which he said, "I know who made the environment. He's coming back, and he's going to burn it all up. So yes, I drive an SUV."
Another point of controversy brought up by bloggers and some religion reporters, was his comment: "If you drive a mini-van, you're a mini-man." more >>
Plans for Southern California pastor and evangelist Greg Laurie to bring his large-scale Harvest Crusade events back to Orange County, Calif., for three nights of biblically-based preaching and performances by popular Christian recording artists were announced Wednesday. The outreach is scheduled to take place in Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Aug. 23-25.
Laurie recently spoke during the National Day of Prayer event in Washington, D.C., in which he focused his prayer on asking for God's forgiveness and seeking a revival for America, noting that although "we have forgotten God, He has not forgotten us."
In addition to the Southern California Harvest, Laurie and Harvest Ministries will host the Philadelphia Harvest at the Wells Fargo Center on Sept. 28, 29. The event will be simulcast to thousands of locations nationwide for a coast-to-coast evangelistic outreach called Harvest America. more >>
Though a full blown conspiracy by the NFL may be in doubt, the fact that unashamed Christian QB Tim Tebow has not been picked up by any team since he was let go by the N.Y. Jets more than two weeks ago leaves room for speculation. Regardless of whether Tebow has been blackballed from the NFL or not, teams from alternative leagues like the Arena Football League have shown an interest in him.
The co-owner of the Philadelphia Soul, ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski, says he's interested in offering a job to the free-agent quarterback, according to Sporting News. Tebow has not responded, however. Jaworski reportedly said, "I'd love to have him."
"I haven't heard back from him, and I'm not going to push it," Jaworski said. "If he decides he wants to play Arena Football, we'll make a spot for him." more >>
Two movements among Christian congregations in the U.S. today, churches with multiple locations (multisite) and leadership development (discipleship), continue to gain momentum as new innovations are being introduced. In addition, perhaps in an even newer development, a growing number of churches are intentionally developing a culture of generosity, an effort to help carry the gospel message outside the church, says the director of new media and technology for the Leadership Network.
"The multisite (one church, multiple locations) movement continues to gain momentum," Todd Rhoades, of Leadership Network, told The Christian Post via email. "We're seeing no slow down at all in the number of churches being involved in multisite ministry. In fact, we're seeing new waves of innovation in the movement itself: including international campuses, online campuses, the move from big cities to rural environments, and more churches partnering to redeem facilities and struggling churches through church mergers."
Rhoades, along with Leadership Nework, hosted a webcast conference on Tuesday called, Church Innovate North America. Guest speakers, which included pastors from around the country, spoke about multisite churches, leadership training, and generosity. more >>