A top Vatican official has told the Catholic Church’s aid arm that it must retain a vibrant Christian identity.
Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican Secretary of State, was speaking at the general assembly of Caritas Internationalis, the international alliance of Catholic aid and development agencies.
In the homily to open the assembly on Sunday, he told the charities that their work “could never be limited to assisting people’s material needs.” more >>
More than 100 reported tornadoes have devastated the South, killing as many as 248 people across six states – the worst outbreak since 1974.
The National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla. said it received 137 tornado reports into Wednesday night, including 66 in Alabama and 38 in Mississippi.
The majority of the fatalities occurred in hard-hit Alabama, with authorities recording 162 deaths from Wednesday night’s storm. more >>
It has been less than 24 hours since the death of David Wilkerson, the beloved founding pastor of Times Square Church in Manhattan, N.Y., founder of Teen Challenge, and bestselling author of The Cross and the Switchblade. David was 79 years old when he died.
Don Wilkerson, 71, the youngest brother of David, spoke to The Christian Post Thursday morning about the backstory of his brother’s work with gang members and drug addicts in New York City, and the qualities that endeared him to the youths that roamed the dangerous streets of “the city that never sleeps.”
Besides being the brother of David Wilkerson, Don is the co-founder of Times Square Church and co-founder of Teen Challenge. He is currently the director of Teen Challenge Brooklyn – the first Teen Challenge center that opened 53 years ago. There are now 233 Teen Challenge centers in the United States and 1,181 centers in total worldwide. Teen Challenge is an evangelical Christian recovery and discipleship program that teaches biblical principles to help young adults struggling with addictions, including drug and alcohol problems. more >>
The Evangelical Free Church of America, in partnership with national believers in India, plans to open a women’s center next week to provide a physical and spiritual haven for victims of human trafficking.
The launch date for Mutki Women’s Center in India is set for March 15.
Sharon (last name withheld for security reasons), a leader for the project said, “Still several things need to come together but March 15th is definitely the tentative plan.” more >>
After three years of weakening support for charities, Americans indicated that they are more likely to increase donations this year, according to a study released Monday.
This is the first time since the recession began that Americans said they are more likely to increase their giving to charity than decrease their support, found the annual Dunham+Company New Year’s Philanthropy Survey, conducted by Wilson Research Strategies.
Nearly 1 in 5 respondents (18 percent) said they plan to increase their giving in 2011, marking a 29 percent increase in households compared to 2010. There was a 48 percent drop in the number of households that said they plan to decrease their giving and a 20 percent jump in households that said their giving will stay the same. more >>
With Sri Lanka facing its worst natural disaster since the 2004 tsunami, Christian aid agencies are providing emergency relief to those affected by the heavy monsoon rains.
Caritas Internationalis is supporting some 100,000 people suffering from flooding in Sri Lanka.
“Some areas are difficult to access and people are trapped there. Rivers are overflowing, dams [are] breaking and the main roads can’t be used,” reports Fr. George Sigamoney, secretary general of Caritas Sri Lanka. more >>