With Islamic extremist attacks seemingly happening throughout the world on a regular basis, the president of Egypt, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, delivered a groundbreaking New Year's Day speech at the highly-prestigious, 1000-year-old Al-Azhar University and urged Muslim imams to change radical rhetoric and lead a "religious revolution" that embraces peace.
With extremists groups like the Islamic State, Boko Haram, and Al Qaeda killing thousands of innocent people in addition to the increase of radical attacks in other parts of the world, most in the international community no longer view Islam as "religion of peace," al-Sisi stated.
"Is it possible that 1.6 billion [Muslims] should want to kill the rest of the world's inhabitants – that is 7 billion—so that they themselves may live? Impossible!" al-Sisi asserted. "I say and repeat again that we are in need of a religious revolution. You, imams, are responsible before Allah. The entire world, I say it again, the entire world is waiting for your next move… because this umma [international Muslim community] is being torn, it is being destroyed, it is being lost – and it is being lost by our own hands." more >>
A florist in Washington State who refused to provide floral arrangements to a gay couple for their same-sex wedding ceremony, due to her religious objection to such a union, can now legally be sued personally by the state's attorney general's office, a judge in the state has determined.
Benton County Superior Court Judge Alex Ekstrom ruled last week that the state may bring a consumer protection lawsuit against Barronelle Stutzman, the owner of Arlene's Flowers in Richland, as she is being accused of violating the Consumer Protection Act when she declined to provide floral arrangements to a regular customer's same-sex wedding because it went against her Christian beliefs.
The judge's decision means that Stutzman remains at risk of suffering a serious personal financial hit and potential loss of her business. Ekstrom has set the trial date for March 23. more >>
An enraged Muslim mob in the Punjab province of Pakistan has prevented a family from burying their loved one, who was previously imprisoned for blasphemy, in their village graveyard. Aabid Mehmood was kidnapped and murdered by masked gunmen after his release.
After 52-year-old Mehmood, who owned a hotel in the Kamra village, claimed in 2011 that he was a prophet of Allah, his own son-in-law filed a blasphemy case against him. After spending over two years in jail, Mehmood was released from prison because of his mentally and physically unstable condition.
As Dawn.com reports, just days after Mehmood's release from prison, he was kidnapped from his home in Ahatta by masked extremists. His body was found last Wednesday near a train station with numerous bullet wounds to the head and chest. more >>
UPDATE: 8 p.m. Jan. 13, 2015
As of 5 p.m. Tuesday the American Family Association's petition calling on Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed to reinstate Kelvin Cochran as the city's fire chief has garnered over 42,000 signatures, while the Family Research Council's petition has garnered more than 32,000 signatures.
Various Christian and social conservative activist groups have launched petition campaigns requesting that the mayor of Atlanta reinstate the city's former fire chief, who was fired last week after the city investigated a book he wrote that included short passages affirming his Christian belief that homosexuality is wrong. more >>
Ousted Atlanta Fire Rescue Department Chief Kelvin Cochran is exploring legal options after being fired last week for espousing his Christian beliefs on homosexuality in his self-published book and sharing it with employees.
The married father of three says that his First Amendment rights were violated when city officials dismissed him as fire chief, one month after he was suspended without pay and forced to undergo sensitivity training.
In his 2013 book, Who Told You That You Are Naked?, Cochran openly expressed his beliefs on faith and spirituality and an interal complaint was filed when he distributed copies in the workplace. more >>
Persecution watchdog group Open Doors has accused the U.S. and world leaders of standing by and watching Christian genocide happen in 2014, following the release of its World Watch List of countries where followers of Christ are most heavily targeted. The group added that Christian persecution is very much a "leading indicator" of major humanitarian problems, such as the rise of terror group ISIS.
Open Doors CEO David Curry told The Christian Post in a phone interview on Wednesday that "there has been a genocide of Christians in Iraq, and the Western world stood by and watched it happen."
He added that for 2015, he would like to see world leaders "understand that the persecution of Christians is a leading indicator, around the world, of major humanitarian problems. It's not that Christians are collateral damage; it's that they're being targeted — and wherever they are being targeted, there are future problems." more >>