Former sex workers in Cambodia, AIDS orphans in Rwanda, and marginalized farmers in Palestinian communities are just some of the world’s poorest people who are hoping that American churchgoers will buy their Christmas gifts through a fair trade organization this season.
Instead of shopping at the local mall, Christian company Trade As One is urging American believers to consider buying gifts that will make a deep impact on the life of the producers and help fight global poverty.
The company this year is calling on churches to rally behind the idea of “Just One” – that if every churchgoer in America would buy just one fair trade purchase then it would be enough money to lift one million families out of poverty for one whole year. more >>
Nearly one in four children in the United States lived in a home that suffered from food insecurity in 2008, according to new data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
In total, 16.7 million children, or 22.5 percent, were from families that had difficulty putting enough food on the table last year. That’s 4.3 million more children than in 2007.
“Child hunger is not just a casualty of the recession,” commented the Rev. David Beckmann, president of the Christian anti-poverty group Bread for the World, in response to the data. “It was a problem before the recession, and unless we take the necessary steps, kids will continue to suffer after the economy recovers.” more >>
Publishing powerhouse Zondervan is selling a Bible that contains over 31,000 handwritten verses collected from its cross-country road trip earlier this year, the company announced Thursday.
The road trip, called Bible Across America, was in honor of the 30th anniversary of the New International Version – the most popular modern-English Bible translation. To celebrate the anniversary, the company sponsored a 22,579-mile journey where Americans in 90 cities and 40 states each wrote a verse in the Bible.
It took nine months to write the complete Bible that boasts 2,200 pages. more >>
More than 100 organizations, including Muslim and secularist ones, have signed a petition against the proposed U.N. resolutions on the "defamation of religions," which they contend will do more harm than good for religious freedom.
The “Common Statement from Civil Society on the Concept of the ‘Defamation of Religions,'” signed by organizations in over 20 countries, opposes the Organization of the Islamic Conference’s (OIC) proposal for the United Nations to adopt a binding treaty that would protect religions from defamation. The groups pointed out that a similar resolution adopted earlier this year only cites Islam as the religion that should be protected.
Moreover, human rights groups say the resolutions will give credit to anti-blasphemy laws in countries such as Pakistan and Sudan. more >>
This year's bestselling new artist, Bluetree, launched a charity this week aimed at ending child sex exploitation.
The charity, StandOut International, is connected to the Ireland-based band’s hit song, “God of This City” – both of which were inspired by their trip to Pattaya, Thailand.
During the mission trip, Bluetree performed worship songs on stage at the Climax Bar, a club which doubles as a brothel in the Red Light district of the city. What the band saw at the club and in Pattaya inspired them to write “God of This City” and to help those exploited and without a voice. more >>
Newly released The Poverty and Justice Bible highlights more than 2,000 verses that refer to poverty and social justice in Scripture.
Published by the American Bible Society, the Poverty Bible is not a new translation – it uses the Contemporary English Version – but rather serves to help users more easily find verses on issues of poverty and justice. Verses on the issues are highlighted in bright orange.
"Nearly every page of the Bible includes a message about poverty or justice," said R. Lamar Vest, president of American Bible Society, in a statement Monday. "The Poverty and Justice Bible acts as God's megaphone revealing that, from Genesis to Revelation, concerns for justice are never far from the heart of God and the minds of biblical writers." more >>