A recent study by Pew Research has found that over the past few decades the rate of single father households with minor children has risen faster than single mother households.
In results released last week, Pew's Social & Demographic Trends project found that single father homes with minor children went up from below 300,000 in 1960 to over 2.6 million in 2011, representing a ninefold increase.
By contrast, the rate of single mother households with minor children went from 1.9 million in 1960 to 8.6 million in 2011, or a fourfold increase. more >>
A Georgia-based charity associated with the United Methodist Church may have broken the Guinness World Record for number of sandwiches made in one hour.
Action Ministries, a faith-based charity organization with ties to the UMC, reported making 2,988 sandwiches in one hour at a Saturday gathering on behalf of the group Smart Lunch, Smart Kid.
If confirmed by Guinness officials, this would pass the present record of 2,706 sandwiches set by Eckrich Bacon Lover's Deli Meats of New York City in May. more >>
The Raleigh, N.C. police arrested 120 protestors Monday involved in "Moral Mondays," a weekly protest that takes place on Mondays against the Republican-controlled state legislature's budget cut. The uproar has raised the question among the Christian community of whether giving to the poor is a private or a government responsibility.
The Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League of North Carolina, denounced the Moral Mondays movement as "socialism with a religious veneer." In an interview with The Christian Post, he said, "I don't see anything moral about Moral Mondays."
He defended the current efforts of Republicans in the state house and senate. "I think it would be immoral if the same course of taxing and spending were continued and the opinions of voters ignored," he said. more >>
Bono, the lead singer of the highly-successful Irish rock band U2, recently sat down with Jim Daly of the nonprofit group Focus on the Family to discuss everything from his children, to his love for his wife of 30 years, Ali Hewson, to his knowledge of Scripture.
While speaking with Daly at the American Bible Society in New York City recently, Bono's talk particularly focused on helping others, as seen through his ONE campaign, which he co-founded in 2004 to fight extreme poverty and HIV/AIDS, particularly in Africa. The campaign seeks to use advocacy, media and policy to raise public awareness regarding issues such as preventable diseases, including HIV/AIDS, extreme poverty, child mortality, education, and malaria.
Bono told Daly that he has chosen to put so much time and energy into the ONE Campaign because to him, "love is to realize the potential of others." more >>
Pope Francis has spoken out against the hunger crisis that millions of people around the world still face, saying that it is "truly scandalous" that in this day and age more isn't being done to help them, noting that the global economic crisis cannot be used as an excuse for inactivity.
"It is a well-known fact that current levels of production are sufficient, yet millions of people are still suffering and dying of starvation. This is truly scandalous," the Roman Catholic Church leader said in a speech on Thursday before 400 participants at the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization Conference.
"A way has to be found to enable everyone to benefit from the fruits of the earth, and not simply to close the gap between the affluent and those who must be satisfied with the crumbs falling from the table, but above all to satisfy the demands of justice, fairness and respect for every human being." more >>
The polio disease was on the verge of eradication when Ibrahim Datti Ahmed, president of the Supreme Council for Sharia in Nigeria and a physician, suggested at about this time in 2003 that the vaccination program in his country was part of a Western conspiracy to render Muslim children infertile. His call for an end to the polio immunization campaign touched a nerve and spread to other Muslim religious leaders in Nigeria, causing the vaccination process to slow down and incidences of the disease to pick up.
From Nigeria, this dual phenomenon of conspiracy theory and re-appearance of the disease then expanded to Muslims internationally. (For an outline of its progress over the past ten years, see my long weblog entry.) So closely connected have Islam and polio become that the Muslim-only pilgrimage to Mecca became a major mechanism of transmitting the disease to faraway places like Indonesia.
By now, Ahmed's paranoia has sent the new wave of polio from Nigeria to Muslim populations in at least 17 other African countries and 6 Asian countries: more >>