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Sept. 7, 2019: Archaeology discovery, 'Drag Syndrome' controversy, Australia's religious freedom bill

Sept. 7, 2019: Archaeology discovery, 'Drag Syndrome' controversy, Australia's religious freedom bill

Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019:

Here are the latest headlines, brought to you by The Christian Post.

— Archaeology discovery: Biblical town Emmaus

Archaeologists believe they might have discovered the location of the town of Emmaus, where Jesus first appeared before two of His disciples after His resurrection.

Scholars on a Franco-Israeli expedition in Kiriath Yearim, a hill that overlooks the approach to Jerusalem, have found a massive, ancient wall of a Hellenistic-era fortress.

The location was mentioned throughout the Old Testament and is said to have been where the Ark of the Covenant was kept for decades before the ark was taken to Jerusalem by King David. 

An upcoming study from the expedition will be published on Oct. 24 and is expected to have a big impact on archaeology and Christian history.

— ‘Drag Syndrome’ controversy

Controversy has erupted in Grand Rapids, Michigan, after a congressional candidate prohibited a venue he owns from being used to host a drag show featuring performers with Down syndrome.

The troupe of London-based drag performers known as "Drag Syndrome" was scheduled to perform at the Tanglefoot Building, owned by congressional candidate Peter Meijer, a Republican running for the seat held by Justin Amash.

The ACLU has filed a discrimination complaint against Meijer with the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, and is demanding that he pay for the costs associated with “Drag Syndrome” having to move to a new venue.

The drag show will now be performed at the Wealthy Theatre where Saturday night’s performance has already sold out.

— Australia considers religious freedom bill

Australia is considering new religious freedom legislation following the firing of Christian rugby star Israel Folau over his Instagram posts about Hell. 

Folau's multimillion dollar contract was terminated earlier this year after a brouhaha erupted over a Bible verse he posted on Instagram about who is condemned to Hell. In the post he quoted a portion of 1st Corinthians 6:9-10.

The post was considered to be in breach of the Professional Players' Code of Conduct and Folau was terminated from his job.

The proposed bill would allow Australians to express their faith outside of the workplace, provided there is no financial damage toward their employer. Expressions deemed malicious or accused of inciting hatred would not be protected under the new law.

Christian comedian Trey Kennedy announces surprise engagement

Christian comedian Trey Kennedy has announced his engagement to model Katie Byrum. The 26-year-old comedian first announced the news to his 2.2 million Instagram followers on Thursday.

Kennedy began his career on the now-defunct video website Vine and eventually expanded to YouTube where he has more than 10 million views for comedy videos that include titles such as "Dads during Christmas" and "Moms." He’s also a musician who has released four albums.

— Pastor's wife deported after 30 years in US

The wife of a Chicago-area pastor who also works as a custodian at Moody Bible Institute was deported last month for overstaying her visa. She lived in the United States for over three decades and was seen as an integral part of her church community, but her inability to navigate the immigration system led to her troubles, her attorney said.  

Julita Bartolome was arrested in July after appearing for a meeting with federal immigration agents in Illinois, NPR station WBEZ Chicago reports. According to her lawyer, Bartolome knowingly overstayed her visa for more than two decades and was then unable to afford to pay for an immigration lawyer to plead her case.

Bartolome’s husband is the pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Chicago's Northwest side. Although his wife has been deported to the Philippines, a GoFundMe fundraising campaign has been set up to pay for lawyers to work on her case and eventual return to the U.S.

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