A New Hampshire public school has recently banned a mother from saying public prayers against gun violence on the school's steps, judging that her Christian-themed prayers were not inclusive of all students.
Following a complaint issued by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Concord High School in Concord, New Hampshire decided to ask Lizarda Urena, a mother of two 10th grade students attending the school, to stop praying for peace on the school's front steps every morning.
"To be fair to all the kids in the school, it is probably best for the principal to say that she shouldn't be speaking out like this and proselytizing on school grounds," Kassandra Ardinger, the president of Concord's school board, told the New Hampshire Union Leader, seconding the suggestion of Superintendent Christine Rath to stop the praying. more >>
Following an informal Iftar dinner at the Department of State in Washington, D.C. on Monday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced Tuesday that the initial meetings between Palestine and Israel have been successful, and both have agreed to commence formal peace talks within the next two weeks.
Kerry announced at the Department of State's Benjamin Franklin Room on Tuesday that the upcoming formal peace talks serve as a "new moment of possibility" for Palestine and Israel.
"The time has come for a lasting peace," Kerry said Tuesday. more >>
Israeli and Palestinian negotiators will gather in Washington, D.C. on Monday and Tuesday to re-start peace talks after nearly three years, thanks in large part to the diplomatic efforts of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
"Both leaders have demonstrated a willingness to make difficult decisions that have been instrumental in getting to this point," Kerry said in the statement regarding the peace talks. "We are grateful for their leadership."
Monday's meeting serves as a new beginning for the talks that abruptly ended in 2010 regarding territory in the Middle East, where Palestine is seeking statehood on Israeli-occupied land. more >>
The Coalition of African-American Pastors (CAAP) has condemned reports of violence following the not guilty verdict in the case of George Zimmerman and the killing of Trayvon Martin, reminding Americans that civil rights were won through peace.
"The black community knows that our civil rights were won through peace, not violence," said CAAP President Rev. William Owens in a statement on Thursday.
"We are a nation of laws, not unlawful violence. The death of Trayvon Martin was a tragedy for everyone, but resorting to violence will only hurt our own communities. What kind of message are we sending to our children if we perpetuate the violence in our culture? We are only confusing our young people when we use violence instead of peaceful protest to change the culture and the law." more >>
In an attempt to maintain peace during the highly-tense George Zimmerman murder trial beginning in Sanford, Fla., on Monday, a group of local pastors has united to sit in the courtroom during the trial and truthfully retell the trial proceedings to their congregations, as well as those gathered outside of the courthouse following the daily hearings.
The group of pastors, known as Sanford Pastors Connecting, has reserved four seats in the second row of the courtroom audience at the George Zimmerman trial, which involves 29-year-old Zimmerman being accused of second degree murder in the death of teenager Trayvon Martin in February 2012.
The group of pastors agreed to support the verdict in the controversial court case and to dispel any controversial rumors leaking from the trial which could result in public violence. more >>
During a three-hour delay caused by bad weather on Friday, members of the famed Philadelphia Orchestra brought sweet relief to fellow passengers on a flight stuck on a tarmac in Beijing by giving an impromptu performance that left the audience clamoring for more.
A video of their performance posted on YouTube on Friday had already been viewed more than 100,000 times early Saturday morning.
"Ni hao," begins a member of the team in announcing the group to the passengers. "The Philadelphia Orchestra is on tour in China and on the way to Macau, and our musicians would like to offer you a musical surprise," she said to cheers from the passengers who quickly brandished cameras and other recording devices to capture the event. more >>