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Dec. 13, 2008 - Fire in Alaska Governor Sarah Palin's home church caused about $1 million's worth of dammages. Arson is suspected, but the motive is not clear. Fire Chief James Steele said aurhorities didn't know whether Governor Palin's connection to the church was relevant to the fire. She said she was sorry for the "undeserved negative attention" the church received after she was nominated as a candidate for the vice-presidency last August. A spokesman for the governor said,
"Whatever the motives of the arsonist, the governor has faith in the scriptural passage that what was intended for evil will in some way be used for good."
The church has received criticism for promoting Focus on the Family's "Love Won Out" conference in Anchorage.
Dec. 11, 2008 - According to the website of the Russian Ministry of Justice, there are plans to "liquidate" 56 religious organizations in Russia, including World Vision, Youth With A Mission, A Russian branch of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and three regional districts of the "Russian Union of Evangelical Christians-Baptists," the Assemblies of God, and others.
The pressure on evangelical groups is coming from a combination of resurging Russian hatred for the West, and pressure from Orthodox churches to ban outside organizations.
Dec. 8, 2008 - Christians gathered in the Washington State Capitol where athiests were allowed to display a sign next to the nativity scene that reads, in part, "Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds."
“You have led the State of Washington to be the armpit of America. And I'm afraid that our governor is the one adding the offensive odor to the armpit,” said Rev. Ken Hutcherson, Antioch Bible Church.
Nov. 20, 2008 - Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, President of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, warned that our generation is creating a new 'world order,' and a 'new man' completely detached from the Judeo-Christian tradition.
According to the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, the cardinal denounced the "dictatorship of relativism," rampant in Western societies, in which there is a growing "anti-Christian attitude" that makes "attacks on Christians, and particular on Catholics, pass off as politically correct."
The Freedom From Religion Foundation recently put up a billboard with the message "Imagine No Religion." The organization advocates the separation of church and state. This is their first billboard with this message in the state, but they have a goal of displaying its messages in every state that permits billboards.
Nov. 19, 2008 - Even though the United States recently removed North Korea from its list of state sponsors of terrorism, it is still brutally represive for Christians.
The Center for the Study of Global Christianity estimates that there are 467,894 Christians in North Korea and 10,592 Christian martyrs each year. Open Doors ministry lists the country as the world's worst religious persecutor.
On the other hand, Franklin Graham was allowed to preach the gospel at Pyongyang's Bongsu Protestant Church in August with no restriction from authorities.
Nov. 17, 2008 - In the aftermath of their disappointment about the passage of Prop. 8, Homosexuals harassed Christians from Lou Engle's House Of Prayer in the Castro District in San Francisco. They shouted, 'We're going to kill you. We know who you are' as police escorted them to safety.
Nov. 13, 2008 - 69-year-old Phyllis Burgess tried to show her belief in traditional marriage at a Palm Springs rally last Friday. She came to the event carrying a large, Styrofoam cross. The "No on 8" demonstrators yanked the cross from her hands and trampled on it.
Now, Burgess says she might press assault charges, according to The Desert Sun.
Nov. 11, 2008 - Members of a pro-homosexual, pro-anarchy organization named Bash Back lured the security staff of Mt. Hope Church in Lansing, Michigan outside the church where they were demonstrating during the church service. Then protestors who had mixed with the congregation inside stood up and began a major disruption. They shouted "Jesus was gay" and other profanities, threw flyers, condoms, and confetti into the crowd. Two women went to the pulpit and began to kiss. The congregants did not react violently, and the pastor prayed that the people so full of anger and hate, would know Jesus' love in their lives.
Oct. 13, 2008 - Christians are being persecuted in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, considered the last bastion of Christianity in Iraq. The shooting of a Christian music store owner is the latest of a series of killings in the area.
Duraid Mohammed Kashmoula, the governor of the province that includes Mosul, said on Saturday that about 3,000 Christians have fled the city in the past week to escape threats and attacks by al-Qaeda-linked Sunni Muslim groups.
Oct. 12, 2008 - Christians in Orissa, India, are being persecuted by Hindu militants. Many Christians are being told to turn over their Bibles, hymnals and images of Christ to be burned. If they fail to comply their home will be burned and they will be driven out of their village or killed.
Here in Kandhamal, the district that has seen the greatest violence, more than 30 people have been killed, 3,000 homes burned and over 130 churches destroyed, including the tin-roofed Baptist prayer hall.
Aug. 5, 2008 - Chinese police have banished house church pastor Zhang Mingxuan from the city of Beijing during the Olympic games.
Plainclothes police officers forcibly removed Zhang and his wife Xie Fenglan from a guesthouse in Beijing on July 18 and took them toYanjiao, Hebei province, to prevent them from meeting foreign officials visiting Beijing for the Games, according to Friday’s (August 1) South China Morning Post (SCMP).
June 12, 2008 - A new law in Colorado (Senate Bill 08-200) makes it illegal to deny a person access to public accommodations, including restrooms and locker rooms, based on gender identity or the "perception" of gender identity.
The law does allow an exemption that allows religious groups to continue teaching, inside their doors, the Bible's condemnation of homosexuality. But religious publishers could be accused under the law for publishing biblical condemnation of homosexuality. Colorado is home to Focus on the Family, NavPress, and International Bible Society.
June 5, 2008 - Father Alphonse de Valk, a Catholic priest, is being tried in Canada for "hate speech" because he quoted the Bible, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and Pope John Paul II's encyclicals, in opposition to same-sex marriage. Pete Vere, a canon lawyer and Catholic journalist raises this question...
"If one, because of one's sincerely held moral beliefs, whether it be Jew, Muslim, Christian, Catholic, opposes the idea of same-sex marriage in Canada, is that considered 'hate'?" he asked.
The United States is on the same path. There is a "hate crimes" plan before the U.S. Congress, which specifically targets criticism of alternative sexual lifestyles.
A New Mexico photographer was fined $6,600 for refusing to take pictures at a lesbian "wedding."
A California law already bans teaching anything but "positive" information about alternative sexual lifestyles, including homosexuality, in its public school.
Dec. 15, 2007 - This article shows that there have been 10 church shootings in the last 4 years, including the two in Colorado last week. It warns that church leaders must be prepared to defend their congregations.
Dec. 10, 2007 - A young man killed two unsuspecting people at a Youth With A Mission training center in Arvada, Colorado, then drove to Colorado Springs where he killed two more in the parking lot of the New Life Church. There were some 7000 people in the church, but his killing spree was ended when he was shot and killed by an armed security guard.
Oct. 26, 2006 - Read this inspiring story of a brave Chinese young man who was a bold witness for Christ in North Korea. He was eventually caught, tortured and killed for his faith. Many people turned to Christ because of him, and after his death the work he started in a prison camp continued.
Oct. 23, 2006 - A declaration from the Ecumenical Confessional Convention in Blankenburg, East Germany, says that an increase of persecution is coming to Western culture. It warns that the trend is a dangerous anti-Christian influence on legislation, academic life and school education. Home-schoolers in Germany are subject to fines and imprisonment. The 20th century was the bloodiest in church history, and the future looks grim.
According to estimates by human rights organizations, 200 million Christians suffer discrimination for their faith. Every year 170,000 Christians die a martyr’s death.
Oct. 20, 2006 - Intense persecution of Christians continues in Eritrea. Just after detaining a U.S. citizen and re-imprisoning a Christian singer, thirteen people were arrested for participating in a religious service in a private home. Two of them, Immanuel Andegergesh, 23, and Kibrom Firemichel, 30, were tortured to death in a military camp outside the town of Adi-Quala. The fate of the other 10 is not yet known. For three years in a row Eritrea has been named by the U.S. State Department a “Country of Particular Concern” It is considered one of the worst violators of religious freedom in the world.
Recently confirmed statistics indicate that at least 1,918 Eritrean citizens are jailed solely for their religious beliefs, without any access to judicial process.
Oct. 19, 2006 - "Religious Expression in Public Schools" guidelines issued by President Clinton, lets students pray to Allah, but banishes Christmas.
Abdurahman Alamoudi, who was president of the American Muslim Council and a supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah, worked with President Clinton and the American Civil Liberties Union when the guidelines, launched by Clinton in 1995.
Since then Alamoudi was arrested for allegedly trying to transport $340,000 to terrorist causes.
Oct. 13, 2006 - Georgetown University, a Catholic school in Washington D.C., has "disinvited" some evangelical groups like InterVarsity Christian Fellowship from any association with the school because of the evangelical practice of sharing Christ with students. The Alliance Defense Fund has written a letter to the university requesting that they rectify the problem.
Sept. 14, 2006 - During her new show, "The View," Rosie O'Donnell said, "Radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam in a country like America ..." Randy Sharp, director of special projects for the American Family Association said we should not be surprised by her opinions.
"It's been a matter of public record for quite some time now," Sharp explained. "Rosie has a well-documented hatred for the war on terrorism, a hatred for our president, and a hatred for the principles of Christianity."
Sept. 14, 2006 - In Eritrea there are at least 1,918 Eritrean citizens in prison. They are subject to torture and forced labor because of their religious beliefs. Ninty-five percent of them are Christians. The information comes from Compass International.
Mar. 27, 2006 - An Afghanistan court dismissed the apostasy case against Abdul Rahman, who became a Christian in the 1990s. The decision eased tensions with the U.S., but is considered an insult to radical Muslims who want strict Sharia law upheld. Rahman is in danger of being killed by his countrymen, but his faith is strong.
"If I must die, I will die," Rahman told the Rome daily La Repubblica, which did not interview him directly but channeled questions through a human rights worker who visited him in prison... "Somebody, a long time ago, did it for all of us," in a clear reference to Jesus Christ.
Mar. 22, 2006 - Responding to hundreds of contacts from concerned Americans, Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns and department spokesman Sean McCormack asked Afghanistan to conduct a trial for a man accused of apostasy from Islam because he became a Christian there. The U.S. asked Afghanistan to conduct the trial"in a transparent way." Burns said he told Afghan Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah, with whom he held talks at the department, that "we would follow the case closely."