Yanicka Parker, a Christian minister and former court specialist, has filed a lawsuit against Broward Clerk of Courts Howard Forman in Florida for allegedly firing her because she refused to perform same-sex marriages due to her religious beliefs.
Parker, who filed the lawsuit earlier this month, is a member of the Faith Deliverance Tabernacle church in Fort Lauderdale, where she also serves as a minister of the Gospel.
According to the lawsuit: "Ms. Parker has a sincerely held religious belief, based upon the tenants of her faith and biblical teaching, such as Leviticus 18:22; Romans 1:26-27, I Cor. 6:9-10; and I Tim 1:9-10, that it is a sin for persons of the same sex to engage in sexual relations and, based upon Genesis 2:18-25, and other biblical authority, that persons of the same sex cannot and should not be morally or legally recognized as husband and wife, and that God will judge individual Christians, as well as the society of which they are a part, who condone or institute same sex marriages." more >>
A 14-year-old Christian boy was sexually molested and murdered, and his body hung on a tree, in eastern Pakistan. Police reluctantly filed a complaint before declaring it to be a "natural" death despite witnesses pointing to unidentified Muslim men.
The body of the victim, identified as Zeeshan Masih and who was visiting his uncle's farm in Faisalabad, Punjab province, was found hanging from a branch of a tree near the farm, the British Pakistani Christian Association reported this week.
Masih was last seen while leaving his uncle's farm to buy a soft drink from a nearby shop on Aug. 23. more >>
The Christian owners of an Oregon bakery who were fined over $135,000 by a state government agency for declining to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding are continuing to fight for their First Amendment rights.
After Aaron and Melissa Klein of Sweet Cakes by Melissa were fined by the state's Bureau of Labor and Industries $135,000 last year for declining to bake a cake for the wedding of Rachel Bowman-Cryer and Laurel Bowman-Cryer in 2013 on the grounds that it would have violated their religious convictions, the Kleins paid their fine last December and filed an appeal with the Oregon Court of Appeals in April in hopes the court would rule that the government agency violated their religious freedom rights.
In response to a brief defending the government's actions against the Kleins filed to the Oregon Court of Appeals last month by state lawyers, the Kleins filed a reply brief to the court earlier this month. more >>
Pakistani Human rights activists are decrying government claims that 90 percent of the over 1,100 children reported missing in Pakistan's Punjab province last year left their home on their own will, and argued that the police are covering up the systemic abuse and kidnapping of Christian girls.
As word has swept across the province that over 600 children have been kidnapped in the region in recent months, Haider Ashraf, the deputy inspector general of operations for the police department in Lahore, has denied such claims.
Although it is hard to deny the fact that over 1,000 abduction cases are filed every year in the province, Ashraf has gone on record as saying that 90 percent of the 1,134 children reported to be abducted in 2015 actually left their homes on their own accord after being admonished by their parents. Ashraf further asserted that about 929 of the abducted children have returned on their own. more >>
A human rights group has warned that despite the passage of a new law in Egypt that aims to protect churches, long-standing restrictions on church construction remains in place, and little is being done to guarantee that radicals who attack Christians will be punished.
"Many Egyptians hoped that governments would respect and protect freedom of religion, including for Christians, after the 2011 [Arab Spring] uprising," said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East and North Africa director at Human Rights Watch.
"Instead, the authorities are ignoring the underlying systemic issues and sending a message that Christians can be attacked with impunity." more >>
A former member of the Islamic State in Afghanistan says the terrorist group is raping girls as young as 10 in the Central Asian country.
The Independent reported on Tuesday that a man identifying himself as Lahor Shah described IS to the Dubai-based news outlet Al-Aan TV as engaging in a wide range of crimes against humanity.
"I witnessed the worst crimes against humanity, perpetrated against Afghans, like the kidnapping and rape of girls aged no more than 10 or 12," explained Shah. more >>