A Christian couple who fled their Washington home with three small children in tow to evade Child Protective Services were eventually tracked down by police in California last week, but not before they had managed to elude authorities for more than a week after receiving donations from various anti-CPS supporters throughout their 1,000-mile journey, a source close to the family has said.
Erica Carey, 29, and her common-law husband, Celve Rengo, 23, took their three kids and fled from their home before CPS could take the children into state custody, a source close to the family told a local NBC affiliate, adding that the couple received donations from various supporters to help them stay out of the grasp of the government.
Although Carey and Rengo hit the road just in time to avoid CPS when they arrived at their Bellingham home to take custody of the children on Jan. 28, the family was finally tracked down at a gas station in California's Santa Cruz County last Thursday where the three children were taken into protective custody. more >>
A New Zealand father whose Armenian wife reportedly left him because he refused to abandon their newborn diagnosed with Down syndrome, has received nearly $500,000 in support from around the world to help him care for the boy. His former wife, however, is disputing his story.
The father, Samuel Forrest, told ABC News that when little Leo was diagnosed with Down syndrome shortly after his birth in Armenia on Jan. 21 his wife, Ruzan Badalyan, gave him an ultimatum.
"This pediatrician walks out of the room with a little bundle — that was Leo," said Forrest. "She had his face covered up and hospital authorities wouldn't let me see him or my wife. When the doctor came out, he said 'there's a real problem with your son.'" more >>
The University of Vermont now officially recognizes "neutral" as a "third gender" option for its students who'll also be allowed to be referred to with "gender neutral" pronouns, The New York Times reports.
The university, a public institution of some 12,700 students, allows students to select their own identity, which includes a new first name even if they have not legally changed it, as well as a chosen pronoun, the Times reports.
The school records such details concerning students' preferences in its information system to enable professors to use the "right" terminology. more >>
A number of members from the Vatican commission against sex abuse have reportedly spoken out against Pope Francis' recent comments saying that it's OK to spank children for discipline, and called on the pontiff to revise his comments.
"It might start off as a light tap, but actually the whole idea about hitting children is about inflicting pain," commission member Peter Saunders said at a press conference, The Independent reported on Sunday.
"That's what it's about and there is no place in this day and age for having physical punishment, for inflicting pain, in terms of how you discipline your children." more >>
As Americans ready to observe Saint Valentine's Day, nationwide multiple organizations will be celebrating National Marriage Week, which will be held Feb. 7-14.
The annual observance, which is in its fifth year, is overseen by a variety of groups and churches involved in the movement to strengthen marriages, including National Marriage Week USA and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
"While marriages are challenged by numerous trials, both old and modern (divorce, abuse, pornography, economic difficulties, etc.), the witness of married couples to the beauty of lifelong married love remains a sign of hope and joy in our culture," Bethany Meola, assistant director of the USCCB Secretariat of Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, told The Christian Post. more >>
An all-female police force of the Islamic State terror group has released a manifesto which is laced with references to the Islamic scriptures, encouraging girls as young as 9, to marry Jihadis and asking women to remain "hidden and veiled" and serve their "masters."
The all-female Al-Khanssaa Brigade's media wing uploaded the manifesto, "Women in the Islamic State: Manifesto and Case Study," onto a jihadist forum used by ISIS to be distributed among its Arabic-speaking supporters, according to Quilliam, a U.K-based counter-extremism think tank.
The treatise is the first such document of its kind, and fundamentally misogynist claiming that the role of women is "divinely" limited, says Quilliam, which translated the text into English. more >>