The African Union has described cases of extreme suffering and violence in the South Sudan civil war, with some people reportedly being forced to eat human flesh and drink blood.
"The commission believes that war crimes were committed in Juba, Bor, Bentiu and Malakal," the AU said in its report, according to BBC News.
Witnesses in the report claimed that people in Juba were forced to drink the blood and eat the flesh of people who had just been killed. more >>
Two dozen Christian families, or close to 158 people, have reportedly been left to starve in the remote village of Mariano Matamoros in Mexico, after local government officials raided farmlands in an effort to drive out Protestants from the region.
International Christian Concern said the raids took place last week, and resulted in the theft of close to 15 acres of crops owned by the Protestant Christian community.
"This latest incident in Chiapas is emblematic of a pervasive climate of religious intolerance that is strangling the life out of rural communities across Mexico. Perhaps the worst part is that this is happening in almost complete obscurity. Officials at every level of the Mexican government have either been ignorant of or willfully turned a blind eye toward religiously based attacks that clearly violate Mexico's own Constitution and international human rights norms," said Isaac Six, ICC's advocacy director. more >>
Bernie Sanders spoke to Liberty University a few weeks back, presenting himself and his convictions boldly and honestly, and in response, a Liberty alumnus and Evangelical pastor "Tim" gave a rather impassioned speech about how his conservative Christian beliefs were now obliging him to vote for Bernie, because Bernie cares for the poor, the needy, and the weak. Salon offers a similar take on Bernie, saying that Bernie's speech is a political earthquake. But what's remarkable about these responses is that Bernie's moment is completely unremarkable.
I'm not commenting on Bernie's rhetorical stylings, and I'll take him at his word about his concern for the poor and needy. But it's not as if Christians who vote Republican have suddenly had scales torn from their eyes by Bernie's speech (except, apparently, pastor Tim). Many of these Christians have already been shouldering their duty to care for the poor and needy. It's just that they see this as a personal duty and not as the government's job. This makes sense of the fact that states dominated by Christian conservatives give more than their liberal counterparts. If Sanders and Pastor Tim are to be believed — wouldn't you expect the opposite? more >>
For the sake of our salvation, we need to pay serious attention, and act with purpose, to what Jesus teaches here in Matthew's Gospel:
"When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him.
"And he will separate them … as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. more >>
A church in Ohio decided to cap off a monthly focus on "Random Acts of Kindness" by performing such to a pizza delivery driver.
Sycamore Creek Church in Pickerington surprised a pizza delivery driver by giving the woman a $1,000 tip, capturing the moment on a video uploaded to YouTube in October.
Pastor Steve Markle gathered $1,046 (to be exact), for the grateful Domino's employee, who was brought to tears by the gift. more >>
As technology changes, so does the job market. Two centuries ago, most low skilled workers would have found work as farmhands, while a century ago they would have been employed in a factory. Today they are most likely to work in the service industry, whether in retail, food service, janitorial services or as personal care aides in a nursing home or hospital.
As I have written before, these jobs are often important stepping stones to better ones, even if they do not offer a direct path to advancement. Low skilled jobs still teach workers how to follow instructions and become reliable, polite employees; these are habits that will greatly increase their chances of being hired again at a potentially higher wage.
Unfortunately, technology has marched forward at such a remarkable pace that even low skilled work is quickly becoming out of reach for many Americans. Jobs that once required only the ability to work with one's hands — an entry level auto-mechanic or a server in a restaurant — now demand computer skills as a basic requirement. more >>