World Vision U.S. President Richard Stearns expressed grief over the child sponsorships that were canceled after the organization announced its original policy change on hiring those in same-sex marriages.
After receiving feedback from supporters and faith leaders who were opposed to World Vision's decision to employ Christians who are in same-sex marriages, Stearns said in a press conference call Wednesday that the board decided to reverse its earlier decision and reaffirm the nonprofit's commitment to core biblical principles and the belief that "marriage is an institution created by God, between a man and a woman."
"I can say from a personal standpoint, the last couple of days have been painful. We especially feel pain and a broken heart for the confusion that we caused for many of our faithful friends and partners around the country who saw the policy change as a reversal of World Vision U.S.'s strong commitment to biblical authority, which was not intended to be," Stearns commented. more >>
Author Rachel Held Evans, who has been described as a liberal evangelical, says the negative reaction against World Vision and its recent announcement that it will begin employing those who are in a same-sex marriage, shows "how out-of-control the evangelical obsession with homosexuality has become."
Reacting to evangelicals who have suggested that Christians should withdraw their support from World Vision, Held Evans stated, "[I]t puts into stark, unsettling relief just how out-of-control the evangelical obsession with homosexuality has become. Organizations don't get 'farewelled' for hiring divorcees. People don't get kicked out of their churches for struggling with pride or for not wearing head coverings when they pray.
"The notion that the way to 'punish' World Vision is to withdraw support from its efforts to feed, clothe, heal, comfort, rescue, and shelter 'the least of these' is so contrary to the teachings of Jesus – particularly Matthew 25:31-46-it's hard to know where to start." more >>
The death toll from the massive Washington state mudslide on Saturday continues to rise, with officials saying that 14 people have now been confirmed dead, while another 176 are still missing.
"I would just ask all Americans to send their thoughts and prayers to Washington state," President Barack Obama asked while speaking from the Nuclear Security Summit in Netherlands, USA Today reported.
A massive 1-square-mile mudslide struck Snohomish County on Saturday, the result of recent heavy rainfall that caused uneven ground, destroying close to 35 homes. Both the death toll and the number of people missing have been rising each day since, with authorities stating that hopes for finding more survivors are grim. more >>
Relatives of passengers on the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 have clashed with police outside Malaysia's embassy in Beijing, demanding answers and questioning officials on Monday who declared that the missing plane had crashed and that their loved ones were dead.
"I'm so mad," one unidentified family member shared with reporters on Tuesday. He added that there is "no evidence" that Flight 370 crashed in the Indian Ocean.
"If you find something: OK, we accept," he said. "But nothing -- just from the data, just from analysis." more >>
Officials are still searching for close to 108 people following a massive mudslide Saturday in Washington state that killed at least eight people. Hopes for more survivors are said to be grim.
"This is a large scale disaster event. We have 108 individual names, or likeness ... It's a soft 108," said Emergency Response Managing Director John Pennington, according to Fox News.
"It was Saturday and probably a higher number than what you would see on a week day." more >>
"Veil of Tears," a riveting documentary from Gospel for Asia that is yet to be released, tells the untold stories of millions of women in South Asia who face oppression simply because of their gender. Dr. K. P. Yohannan, founder and international director of GFA, said the film not only shows the intense suffering, but the hope these women can find when they understand that they are valued in the eyes of God.
"One of the most obvious problems in this area is that the most unreached, untouched, neglected, suffering humanity in our world is women in Asian nations," Yohannan told The Christian Post. "For example, India alone has 46 million widows. That means a girl could be 18, 19, 20 or 30, and when her husband dies, in many places that's the end of their life. Many of them end up in despair."
He talked about an island off of the coast of West Bengal known as the "Widow's Island." Seventy-five percent of the people that live on that island are women who don't have husbands and they have no hope – they have been rejected and abused, Yohannan said. more >>