Monday, 31 December 2018
Founder of Feminist Group That Goes Topless to Protest Abortion Becomes Pro-Life, Apologizes
STEVEN ERTELT DEC 30, 2015 | 5:25PM WASHINGTON, DC
Chances are you’ve heard of the pro-abortion feminists who protest topless for abortion at The Vatican or infiltrate Catholic Churches to push their radical abortion agenda. In Spain, once time, as the Spanish government pushes a pro-life proposal to roll back some of Europe’s most pro-abortion laws, extreme feminists from Femen showed their anger by hurling objects at Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela as he attempted to enter a local Catholic Church before Mass.
In October, the the violent mob of Femen abortion activists attempted to desecrate an Argentine cathedral and threw stones and bottles at Catholics praying the rosary in front of the church on Sunday.
Now, shockingly, the founder of the Brazilian chapter of Femen has become pro-life and is apologizing for her actions. Here’s a report from Red Alert Politics:
Sara Fernanda Giromin, also known as Sara Winter, was not merely feminist. She was the founder of Femen Brazil in 2012 and later of Bastardxs. Both groups gained nation and worldwide attention for their angry bare-chested protests.
Winter is reportedly upset with how the feminist movement “uses women as objects” and “covers up pedophilia in its ranks.” While Sara’s own religious beliefs are not clear, she did apologize to Christians and referred to feminism as “a religious sect.”
I saw the feminist movement cover up for PEDOPHILES. I saw the feminist movement PERSECUTE WOMEN … I am a witness to the fact that today in the feminist movement women are not of any importance but serve as fuel for the fires of hatred that the feminist sect cannot allow to die.
Fortunately, Winter is now pro-life.
There are still reasons to celebrate, other than Sara having a complete change of heart three years later. She has not only denounced and exposed feminism, but is pro-life.
Sara aborted her first child, but gave birth to her second, a son. It was he who helped her change her attitude on abortion. In October she repented and asked for forgiveness. She also implored “women who are desperate to abort” to “think carefully about it.” Sara was “very sorry I did it” and spoke of how “I don’t want the same for you.”
A report in The Blaze has more on Winter, whose real name is Sara Fernanda Giromin, recanting her pro-abortion views.
“I have repented of having had an abortion and today I ask for forgiveness,” Giromin wrote, claiming that after the birth of her baby, “life has taken on a new meaning.”
“Please, women who are desperate to abort, think carefully about it. I was very sorry I did it. I don’t want the same for you,” she added.
In a YouTube video published earlier this month, Giromin, who founded Femen Now at age 19, apologized to Christians for her past transgressions.
Winter is proof that, like so many other pro-life advocates who have come from the ranks of the abortion industry over the years, even the hardest heart can be softened.
Posted on 12/31/2018 5:42 AM by Bobbie Patray
Friday, 28 December 2018
FRONTPAGE MAGAZINE'S PERSON OF THE YEAR: SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS
Recognizing the woman fighting on the front lines of the media war.
December 28, 2018
The struggle for the future of this country is being fought in the hearts and minds of its citizens. The media is the enemy and Sarah Huckabee Sanders is the warrior who takes them on day after day.
The huge media sector easily outnumbers the Ouachita Baptist University grad taking them on.
CNN alone has 4,000 employees. The New York Times has nearly as many. And when she singlehandedly faces off against 49 people in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room and the less than 30 people on her staff take on a mainstream media machine of tens of thousands, it’s a true underdog story.
For a year and a half, Sanders has been reporting for duty as the White House Press Secretary. She’s been shouted at, called names, had her appearance demeaned, and was kicked out of a restaurant. Mainstream media White House correspondents, invariably male, try to talk over her and shout her down. But she’s been so effective that there have been calls by the media to boycott her press briefings.
With Sarah’s success has come a high price. Leftist harassment of Sanders has become so severe that she has become the first press secretary to require secret service protection, including at her home.
"The media has attacked me personally, on a number of occasions, including your own network," Sanders said, responding to CNN's Jim Acosta, who would later get in trouble for manhandling a female White House intern. "Said I should be harassed as a life sentence, that I should be choked."
It was MSNBC’s Nicole Wallace who made the choking remark, saying, live on the air, to an NBC White House correspondent, "How do you resist the temptation to run up and wring her neck?"
"No one is telling them to be violent protesters, but we're not going to go let these people go through life unscathed," the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin had declared on MSNBC. "Sarah Huckabee has no right to live a life of no fuss, no muss, after lying to the press, after inciting against the press. These people should be made uncomfortable.”
Neither MSNBC nor the Washington Post imposed any consequences for this violent rhetoric because murderous fantasies aimed at Trump and his people have been normalized by the mainstream media.
"When I was hosted by the Correspondents’ Association, of which almost all of you are members, you brought a comedian out to attack my appearance, and called me a traitor to my own gender," Sarah noted.
But Sanders pushed back and won.
The White House Correspondents’ Association has revamped its lineup moving away from the Michelle Wolf fiasco to a more civil tone. And Sanders’ determination and resilience in the face of that ugly episode of media harassment even won grudging admiration from members of the media.
"Watching a wife and mother be humiliated on national television for her looks is deplorable," MSNBC's Mika Brezinski tweeted.
"That @PressSec sat and absorbed intense criticism of her physical appearance, her job performance, and so forth, instead of walking out, on national television, was impressive," Maggie Haberman of the New York Times tweeted.
But that’s always been her strength.No matter what the media throws at her, from insults to death threats, Sarah Huckabee Sanders stays focused and remains on message. The interruptions, tantrums and yelling by the media mob have yet to rattle her. She may have the Secret Service at home protecting her and her family, as she pointed out, "a Hollywood actor publicly encouraged people to kidnap my children", but she’s never let it stop her.
Like other members of the Trump administration, there have been efforts at legal harassment. These attacks also frequently went into the realm of the unbelievably absurd, such as the time that Walter Shaub, Obama’s head of the Office of Government Ethics, suggested that Sanders had violated the Hatch Act when she tweeted about an Amazon Echo ordering a toy because her son shouted Batman into it.
(Meanwhile Shaub had repeatedly abused the OGE Twitter account to attack Trump, before going to work for a Soros funded organization.)
Then a complaint was filed with the Office of Special Counsel over a photo that Sanders took with Kanye West because no angle of attack is too petty and no effort at intimidating Trump’s people too ugly.
But throughout all the harassment, verbal, physical and legal, Sanders has kept right on going.
The New Yorker called the 5’6 Arkansas native, “Trump’s battering ram.” That’s how the flacks of the media, the privileged potentates of the Washington D.C. press corps, see Sarah because she won’t bow to the gargantuan echo chamber of the mainstream media. But Sarah Huckabee Sanders isn’t a battering ram. She’s a fortress. She takes a stand and makes it clear that she won’t be moved.
No matter what.
And she pushes back, not by yelling at the media, but by firmly insisting on correcting its members, on distinguishing between right and wrong, and on demanding standards from her media opponents.
Sometimes Sarah Huckabee Sanders does it by just insisting on plain old-fashioned goodness.
Last Thanksgiving, Sanders insisted that reporters say what they were grateful for before asking her a question. The New Yorker fumed that Thanksgiving was a “degrading ritual”. “I’m thankful that Trump has failed,” the Washington Post shot back.
But the Thanksgiving moment defined what made Sanders so different than other press secretaries.
In Washington D.C. politics, it’s all too easy to get caught up in the spin cycle, to lose sight of basic truths, and to be always reacting to the news cycle with no sense of higher truth or deeper principles. Press secretaries have to build backdoor relationships with the media, undermining their employers by trading secrets in order to plant stories, while thinking about possible media employment down the road. In that environment, it’s easy to forget who you are, what you believe and what you stand for.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders has never forgotten that. In a hateful environment of utter indecency, she stands for the simple decency of defying the tide of hatred that washes ashore at every gathering in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room. And she does it with admirable dignity and fortitude.
Media portrayals often depict Sanders as a bully, humiliating and embarrassing the media. The opposite is true. Her stolid dignity and unmovable insistence on telling the truth embarrass the media. Every time Sanders takes on the press corps, they come away looking like deranged, egotistical activists throwing a tantrum. The media, which is built on spinning reality, has smeared her, but it’s never been able to change her. That’s why it’s pondering the idea of just giving up and running away from a 5’6 woman.
And that’s why Sarah Huckabee Sanders is FrontPage Magazine’s Warrior Person of the Year.
Posted on 12/28/2018 6:38 AM by Bobbie Patray
Thursday, 27 December 2018
As Last Abortion Center in Nashville Closes, Tennessee Doctor Reveals Why Life is Winning
These are interesting times in the battle over abortion here in Tennessee. Four years ago, an effort to amend Tennessee’s state constitution was successful. Years in the making, it was one of the most expensive and vigorously contested ballot measures in the state’s history.
It has led to passage of commonsense laws to regulate the abortion industry. As a practicing OB/GYN for the past two decades, I’ve often seen women who were violated by substandard care at Planned Parenthood. I know firsthand how abortion leaves women and families broken.
Constitutional Change Makes Way for Life
The successful passage of what was then called Amendment 1 resulted in the following language being placed in our state constitution: “Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion.”
This change was necessary after four of the five justices on the state’s Supreme Court had ruled in 2000 that Tennessee’s 200+ year old constitution contained a fundamental right to abortion. Following that decision, very little abortion legislation had withstood the inevitable legal challenges mounted by the abortion industry.
As was expected, the abortion industry challenged Amendment 1’s passage. They could find no real legal or constitutional basis for their challenge. In their desperation, they challenged the manner in which the votes were counted. They lost at every turn as the case worked its way up the ladder in the federal judiciary — to the Supreme Court of the United States.
On October 1 of this year, the high court declined to hear the appeal, allowing the lower court decision and Amendment 1 to stand.
Ultrasounds and Informed Consent
In the wake of Amendment 1’s passage, one abortion policy change passed by the state legislature will take effect on January 1, 2019. HB0108 will require that an ultrasound examination be a part of the process for women seeking an abortion in Tennessee.
The law requires the individual performing the ultrasound to offer the woman an “opportunity to learn the results of the ultrasound.” The ultrasound report will also be required to document whether or not a heartbeat was detected. This law strikes at the heart of the abortion industry’s pattern of behavior. Women are often denied their right to know the truth about what is happening in an abortion.
Abortionists know that well-informed women are less likely to go through with the procedure. Abortion clinic personnel are trained to conceal the real nature of the unborn at every turn. They do not truthfully and factually discuss the nature of the unborn baby and what will happen to him or her.
Instead, they use deceptive language and euphemisms to make it less likely that a woman will change her mind about seeking an abortion. They refer to the baby as a ‘clump of cells’ and equate him or her with a pair of tonsils, an appendix, or a pile of toenail clippings.
The Difference Quality Care Makes
For over ten years, I have been the medical director of a pro-life pregnancy center called Portico. What we find at our center proves the importance of ultrasounds for women who may be considering abortion.
Established more than 30 years ago, Portico offers free ultrasounds and pregnancy tests to women experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. Half of the women who walk through our doors fall into the category we call ‘abortion-minded.’ That is, they are either sure they plan to have an abortion or are considering it.
Clients of Portico experience the staff’s compassion, hear the truth about life and see an ultrasound. Less than five percent of women are still ‘abortion-minded’ when they walk out the door. Seeing life in that fashion is a striking experience. Abortion clinics usually do not show the patient her ultrasound images. They do not want the patient to see her baby. Portico also has a mobile ultrasound unit. Some days, it has been parked down the street from one of Nashville’s abortion clinics.
Recently, a patient who had just finished her pre-op appointment at the abortion clinic was clearly upset. She came to our mobile unit, and tearfully asked if she could have an ultrasound to see her baby. Our staff learned she had asked the abortion clinic sonographer to show her the baby, and the person had refused. We took her in and gave her the ultrasound. Once she saw her baby, she broke down in tears. At that moment, she decided she would not have an abortion.
Clearly, this new state law will change hearts and minds — and save lives.
911 Call Exposes Abortion Industry
For many years, those seeking abortion services in Nashville had two locations of providers. The Women’s Center has long been located in south Nashville. Their lack of quality care was showcased in one of the most impactful ads supporting Amendment 1.
The recording of a 911 phone call originating from the Women’s Center was obtained by Amendment 1 supporters. In the recording, we heard the chaos surrounding the care of a woman in critical condition following an abortion.
If abortion clinics were held to the same quality standards as legitimate medical facilities, all personnel involved would have known what to do in an emergency. They would have been easily able to locate emergency supplies, drugs and equipment. Ironically, years before, the owner of the Women’s Center was the plaintiff in a lawsuit. The court prevented abortion clinics from being inspected to see that they meet safety and cleanliness standards.
After the passage of Amendment 1, the owner challenged a law that applied to any Tennessee clinic that performs more than 50 abortions annually. It required his facility and others to comply with ambulatory surgery center safety standards.
Despite that 911 call broadcast for all to hear, he still didn’t care enough about the patients to meet basic medical safety standards.
Last Abortion Center in Nashville Closes
In August of this year, his clinic ceased operations and has not reopened. That left the Planned Parenthood clinic as the only facility in Nashville in which women could seek an elective abortion.
This past Monday, December 10, Planned Parenthood of Tennessee announced that its Nashville location would no longer be providing abortion services. They began referring callers seeking abortion services to providers in Knoxville and Memphis, two other large cities in Tennessee.
Planned Parenthood officials have declined to give specific information as to why they have stopped performing abortions in their Nashville location, but did say that they are “undergoing a period of quality improvement.”
According to an article in the Tennessean, Nashville’s largest newspaper, a Planned Parenthood spokesman also attributed the cessation of abortion services, at least in part, to a shortage of abortion providers.
The author of that report visited the Nashville Planned Parenthood location on Monday morning. She noted that the waiting room in the facility was completely empty.
Shining Light Exposes Lies
There are two important takeaways here. First, if abortion is really only three percent of what Planned Parenthood does, where were the other 97 percent of their patients on Monday morning? Where were all the patients who couldn’t get pap smears, cancer screening, STD checkups, and birth control anywhere else?
They weren’t there because the 3 percent claim is a lie, and so is the claim that many women have no alternatives to Planned Parenthood. Abortion is far more than 3 percent of what Planned Parenthood does. When you take out the half a billion dollars of Planned Parenthood’s annual revenue that comes from the federal government, 80 percent of what remains comes from abortion services.
The second and less obvious point has to do with the gynecologists who perform abortions. Those who are most aware of what abortion does are almost universally unwilling to do them. I have always found it somewhat puzzling that OB-GYN colleagues I know will say that they are “pro-choice.” But they are personally unwilling to do the procedures themselves.
“Abortion is normal,” stated the author of Shout Your Abortion in a recent interview. Then why aren’t more medical professionals willing to provide abortion services? Could it be the procedure itself is deeply disturbing in its brutality? There truly is a moral dilemma surrounding the baby and his or her right to live.
The fact that they cannot find anyone to work and keep their clinic open says far more about the real nature of abortion than they will admit.
Posted on 12/27/2018 7:12 AM by Bobbie Patray
Wednesday, 26 December 2018
Whoopi Goldberg: Right to Celebrate Christmas is the Same as a “Woman’s Right” to Abortion
Leave it to ABC’s The View to connect Christmas – the celebration of the world’s most important birth – to abortion. But that it did. According to Whoopi Goldberg, the right to publicly celebrate Christmas is the same as a “woman’s right to choose.”
During The View on Dec. 13, Goldberg brought up a story from Texas where a “public school teacher was forced to remove a display, a – a Christmas display of Linus,” based off of the Peanuts film A Charlie Brown Christmas. That display, she added, included a Biblical quote from the cartoon movie reading, “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a savior, which is Christ the Lord. That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.’”
Co-host Joy Behar defended the school district’s decision.
“There are many quotes from the cartoon,” Behar argued. “They picked one that was particularly provocative.”
But another co-host, Jedediah Bila, defended the teacher by asking, “Why do people have to get offended by everything?” She continued:
I was raised Catholic for years. If I see a menorah, I say, ‘Oh that’s great, someone’s – someone’s expressing themselves and what they love and what they’re passionate about.’ If – an atheist is entitled to not believe in anything. It doesn’t offend me, though, and I think there’s something wrong culturally if we jump to be offended by everything.
Goldberg also defended the public Christmas display. “Let’s keep in mind, it is Christmas,” she began. “It is Christmas.” And, she said, Christmas has no chance of disappearing anytime soon.
“Now, what people get crazy about, ‘cause nobody is trying to get rid of Christmas,” she added. “You can’t. Christmas is what it is. This is when it happens. It’s always – there’s Christmas trees – always going to happen.”
To clarify the school’s decision, co-host Sunny Hostin tried to cite Texas law.
“The law in that state says ‘a display relating to a traditional winter celebration may not include a message that encourages adherence to a particular religious belief,’” she began. But Goldberg interrupted that certain times are more appropriate to celebrate certain holidays.
“It’s ridiculous – no, no, but they don’t all fall at the same time. Christmas falls at this time, this is when you do it. If Hanukkah and Christmas are a weekend within, then you put them together,” she began. “But you cannot pretend that Christmas doesn’t start with the birth of Christ.”
I’m not a religious person, okay? I’m not a religious person. But I do know that Christmas starts with the word ‘Christ.’ It’s about the birth of Christ. So you can’t – you can’t erase that. And if you don’t believe in it, if you don’t believe in it, then you got Santa Claus.
Behar sought middle ground by saying that even though she’s a “very big Christmas fan” she still agreed “separation of church and state must be adhered to in a public school.”
Goldberg disagreed again – this time by bringing up (the completely unrelated topic of) abortion:
But it’s the same conversation with a woman’s right to choose. What I do with my body is my right. It is not your right to tell me. The same thing is it’s – if you believe in Christmas, it’s not my right – you know, I grew up and – and, you know, kids who didn’t go to Catholic school had Christmas and they – we never knew what their religions were, but we hung cause it was Christmas holiday.
Abortion is a topic her show routinely obsesses over. In the past, the View crew has calledformer presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson “pathetic” for speaking out against abortion and slammed actor Kelsey Grammer for wearing a pro-life T-shirt. Goldberg has also declared that abortion is legal because people are tired of “hanger” and “Clorox” abortions and insisted that there was “nothing” in the Bible about abortion.
Posted on 12/26/2018 5:33 AM by Bobbie Patray
Friday, 21 December 2018
Legislature May Oversee Nashville Police Oversight Board, Citing Constitutional Concerns
Nashville’s police oversight board may receive its own oversight – before it even launches.
Ever since Nashville-Davidson County voters approved the $10 million-plus oversight board in a Nov. 6 referendum titled Amendment 1, prompting concerns from police officers, leading Tennessee Republican legislators have set their sights on the initiative.
The board has broad powers to investigate officers and call for punishments by the District Attorney, grand jury, or U.S. Attorney, and can even compel witnesses, according to its Metro Nashville webpage. Nominations to the board are due today.
Speaker-elect Rep. Glen Casada (R-TN-63), plans to study the oversight board when the Legislature convenes in January, NewsChannel 5 said.
“This is an issue we will investigate further when session begins in January with all interested parties and stakeholders that have concerns about Amendment 1 and its impact on law enforcement,” Casada said. “The safety of our citizens is paramount and we must ensure our counties and municipalities do not violate the state’s constitutional duty to protect all Tennesseans.”
State Rep. William Lamberth (R-TN-44), the incoming House majority leader, told Nashville Public Radio the board is redundant since there are other methods to oversee police.
“To spend an enormous amount of money to have an additional oversight board to do this, does appear to me to be a colossal waste of money,” Lamberth told Nashville Public Radio.
A police representative said he is glad the Legislature is concerned about the board.
“The flaws embedded in the current charter language regarding the community oversight board are beyond concerning,” James Smallwood, president of the Nashville Fraternal Order of Police, told The Tennessee Star in an email.
“With the exception of being a Davidson County resident, there are virtually no standards that potential board members will be required to meet before appointment,” Smallwood said. “There are no requirements on what training and knowledge board members should have and the charter language budgets an unprecedented $1.5 million annually. These issues, along with the many others we have discussed in recent months, should be concerning to anyone who is interested in the future of the Nashville community. We are certainly glad to see that the state legislature shares these concerns and is looking to see what standards would be reasonable for such an entity to achieve before becoming operational.”
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/21/2018 9:08 AM by Bobbie Patray
Friday, 21 December 2018
Chinese Police Raid Children’s Bible Study, Shut Down Third Prominent Underground Church This Winter
Chinese police shut down a third prominent underground church this winter Saturday after raiding a children’s bible study and confiscating over 4,000 Christian books.
Authorities in Guangzhou raided the Rongguili Church at 10 a.m., announcing to parents and children at the Bible study that all activities at the church were suspended and declaring that the unregistered church had violated China’s Religious Affairs Regulation. Police recorded the identities of all attendees, children included, and dismissed them from the church, warning them not to return.
“Halfway through the children’s Bible class, we heard the footsteps of dozens of police and officials stomping up the stairs,” an attendee of the Bible Study said, according to South China Morning Post. “They read out law enforcement notices declaring our venue was an illegal gathering that had engaged in illegal publishing and illegal fundraising and confiscated all Bibles.”
“They then verified our identities again and warned us not to return to the church before letting us go,” the church member added.
Authorities also arrested one parent who reportedly tried to photograph the incident.
The closure of the Rongguili Church, which served about 5,000 Christian faithful in its weekly services, comes only days after authorities in Chengdu shut down Early Rain Covenant Church and arrested its pastor and 100 of its 500 members. Authorities also shut down Zion Church in Beijing, which served 1,500 members, in September.
The late Pastor Samuel Lamb Xiangao, who helped lead China’s underground house church movement, founded the Rongguili Church in 2000. It was one of the most prominent centers of Christian worship in Southern China, according to members of the local Christian community. Its closure is part of Chinese authorities’ increasingly severe crackdown on churches that have not officially registered with communist authorities, in accordance with stringent religious regulations that China implemented in February and has used to inhibit church attendance and promote worship of the state.
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/21/2018 8:06 AM by Bobbie Patray
Friday, 21 December 2018
California Dem Ted Lieu say he would 'love to regulate' speech, bemoans US Constitution that prohibits him
California Democrat Ted Lieu bemoaned on Wednesday that though he would “love to be able to regulate the content of speech,” including that on Fox News, he can’t do it because of the U.S. Constitution.
Lieu made the comments during an interview about the testimony of Google CEO Sundar Pichai at a House Judiciary Committee hearing, where he dismissed the allegations that the tech giant amplifies negative stories about Republican lawmakers, saying “if you want positive search results, do positive things."
CNN host Brianna Keilar praised Lieu for his performance but asked whether other Democrats should have used the committee to press Google on conspiracy theories that spread on their platforms.
“It's a very good point you make. I would love if I could have more than five minutes to question witnesses. Unfortunately, I don't get that opportunity,” Lieu said of the committee hearings.
“However, I would love to be able to regulate the content of speech. The First Amendment prevents me from doing so, and that's simply a function of the First Amendment, but I think over the long run, it's better the government does not regulate the content of speech,” he continued.
Lieu added that private companies should self-regulate their platforms and said the government shouldn’t interfere.
After his remarks aired, Lieu came under fire on social media, prompting him to go on a Twitter spree to clarify his views, including that he would like to regulate Fox News.
One Twitter user had accused him of being “a poster child for the tyranny.”
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/21/2018 7:04 AM by Bobbie Patray
Thursday, 20 December 2018
He Comes to Make His Blessings Flow Far as the Curse Is Found!
Yesterday a big truck pulled up to my front door to deliver a pallet of boxes filled with my newly published booklet, The Cosmic Consequences of Christ’s Crosswork. The driver greeted me saying he was “a Christian and a patriot!”
He explained that he’d delivered the pallet of my previous booklet a couple of months ago, and my daughter, who’d signed for it, had told him it was titled Social Justice vs. Biblical Justice: How Good Intentions Undermine Justice and Gospel, so he knew I was “a Christian and a patriot” too. (He also remarked that my daughter had spoken proudly of me as an author and Christian theologian. You can bet that warmed my heart!)
When I told him the subject of this booklet, he said he’d never heard before that Christ had come to achieve anything other than the salvation of individual souls.
I briefly explained that Romans 8 and Colossians 1 teach us that Christ also came so “that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:21), that is, “to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross” (Colossians 1:20).
He was fascinated—and encouraged. I broke open one of the boxes and handed him a copy.
“This is for you,” I said. He broke into a big grin and thanked me.
That truck driver—Brian—is typical of many evangelical Christians in America today. They all understand that Christ came to save sinners who would repent of their sin and trust in Him. Few understand that He came to do far more than that: to bring about a transformation of all of human society and indeed a transformation of the whole cosmos, setting it free from the “bondage to decay” to which God had subjected it in judgment of Adam’s sin, and ushering it into “the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”
The message of Christ’s saving work for individual sinners is indeed glorious—the most glorious message we have.
But the message that His work extends to the whole cosmos is also glorious. It’s what motivates us at the Cornwall Alliance to pursue our mission to help people understand how to be good stewards of this wonderful earth of which God has given mankind dominion.
That’s why I wrote The Cosmic Consequences of Christ’s Crosswork. I want you to have it. I believe you’ll find it tremendously encouraging. It fleshes out what’s hinted at in one of my favorite verses in the Christmas carol Joy to the World: “No more let sins and sorrows grow, nor thorns infest the ground. He comes to make His blessings flow far as the curse is found!”
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/20/2018 8:01 AM by Bobbie Patray
Thursday, 20 December 2018
A Million Here, a Million There—Pretty Soon You’re Talking about Real Penguins
Eighty years ago, a museum curator aboard a fishing trawler in the Indian Ocean got a shock felt around the world. In a net full of mundane fish, he found one he’d never expected to see. It was a coelecanth. Why hadn’t he expected to see it? Because ichthyologists (fish scientists) believed it had gone extinct 65 million years before.
Yet there it was, flopping around, all too alive to have gone extinct 65 million years ago. The discovery shook the world of marine biologists.
Fast forward 80 years, and biologists get another shock, only this time it’s administered not by a fish but by 1.5 million seabirds.
Adelie penguins, to be precise.
Biologists hadn’t thought Adelie penguins were extinct. They knew there were millions of them in various places in Antarctica. But they’d thought they knew where all of them were.
Until March of this year. That’s when a group of researchers stumbled on some shocking satellite images—images of poop stains.
Images of poop stains weren’t unusual. The researchers had been using them to locate colonies of Adelie penguins for years. What was shocking was that these images were of poop stains where specialists in Adelie penguins had never before known that there were any. And they weren’t of poop stains from just a handful of birds. They were of stains from 1.5 million of them.
The discovery rightly delights all who love the charming-looking birds, and it should delight all who recognize them as God’s creatures displaying His glory. It certainly delighted me when I read about it back in March.
But coming upon a recap of the story just now, another thought occurred to me: If scientists could be unaware of a colony of a million-and-a-half rather large (18–28 inches tall, 8–13 lbs.) birds whose black-and-white tuxedo-like plumage makes them stand out boldly against the white background of their natural habitat, might they not also be unaware of many colonies of much smaller, less conspicuous species of plants and animals they think are extinct or in danger of becoming so?
Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not implying by this that we shouldn’t be concerned about endangered species—although empirical evidence indicates that model-based and anecdotal estimates of the rate of species extinction are vastly exaggerated. What I am implying is that a little scientific humility is in order.
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/20/2018 7:59 AM by Bobbie Patray
Wednesday, 19 December 2018
Ex-Muslim Christian Pastor, Refugee From Iran, Arrested for Sharing His Testimony — in Minnesota
Late last month, Ramin Parsa, a Christian pastor who fled Iran as a religious refugee, was arrested for privately sharing his faith testimony in the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn. He fled persecution in Iran and Turkey, only to find persecution in the land of the free and the home of the brave.
"I came to the U.S. as a political and religious — as a Christian — refugee. They oppressed me for my faith in Iran. I was stabbed in Iran," Parsa told PJ Media in an interview on Tuesday. Then last week, he was arrested for a private conversation about his faith, handcuffed to a metal chair for four hours without water, and later charged with trespassing.
"These things might happen in other countries, oppressive dictatorships, but not in America," the pastor said.
Parsa, a pastor at Redemptive Love Ministries International in Los Angeles, Calif., traveled to Minnesota for two days to visit two different churches. He went to the Mall of America (MOA) on Saturday, August 25, with an elder from one of the churches, and with the elder's 14-year-old son. Shortly after entering the mall, he struck up a conversation with two Somali-American women.
"Our conversation was casual. At first, we were not talking about the gospel," Parsa recalled. "They asked me, 'Are you a Muslim?' I said, 'No, I used to be a Muslim and I'm a Christian now.' I was telling them the story of how I converted."
A passerby could not stand the discussion, however. "Another lady told the guard, 'This guy is harassing us!'" MOA security came and told Parsa to stop soliciting. "I said, 'We're not soliciting.' But we just left," the pastor explained.
The pastor and his friends went into a coffee shop, bought a latte, and came out. Parsa told PJ Media he thought that would be the end of it. He was sorely mistaken.
"When we came out of the coffee shop, three guards were waiting for us, and they arrested me right there," the pastor recalled. "They came after me and arrested me, and said, 'You cannot talk religion here.'"
Parsa told security he was a pastor. "They told me, 'We arrested pastors before,'" he recalled, still shocked by the answer. "It was something normal for them, they were used to it."
Meanwhile, the two Somali-American women who wanted to hear the pastor's story argued with the woman who reported him to security. They defended Parsa. Onlookers asked why the man was being arrested. "They said, 'Because he's a Christian,'" Parsa told PJ Media.
All this was bad enough, but the guards proceeded to abuse the pastor once he was in custody.
"They handcuffed both my hands to a metal chair that was bolted to the ground in a basement," Parsa said. He said it reminded him of the KGB, the notorious secret police in the Soviet Union.
"They began to file a report and they wanted to take my picture. I said, 'You cannot take my picture — you arrested me wrongfully,'" the pastor recalled. "They said, 'Then you're going to stay here longer.'"
Later, Parsa asked for a glass of water. They refused, unless he would allow them to take his picture. He asked to go to the bathroom. Again, they refused. Shortly before the police came, his captors relented.
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/19/2018 10:38 AM by Bobbie Patray
Wednesday, 19 December 2018
“Burnt Beyond Recognition”: Muslim Persecution of Christians, August 2018
Ethiopia: Approximately 15 Christian priests were killed—at least four burned alive—and 19 churches torched during Muslim uprisings in the east, where most of the nation’s 33 percent Muslim population is centered. “Similar tensions are bubbling under the surface in other parts of Oromia,” which is approximately 50 percent Muslim, said a local source. “We have even heard of places where Muslims had asked Christians to vacate the area. And though this call is veiled as ethnic rivalry by some media and observers, it is at its very core a religious matter.”
Nigeria: During one of eight raids on Christian villages on August 28, Muslim Fulani herdsmen burned alive a Christian pastor, his wife, and three young children in their home; two other non-relatives were also killed in the raids. Armed with machetes and AK47 rifles, the Islamic raiders also looted and destroyed 95 houses and three churches. Gyang Adamu, one of the pastor’s surviving children who was away at the University of Jos at the time, “got to know about the attack when I saw a post on Facebook that Abonong village [his home], was under attack,” he said. When he finally got through to someone local, “the report I received was very devastating; I couldn’t believe that all my family members have been engulfed in the pogrom. On reaching home, I saw my daddy and younger ones burnt beyond recognition. The sight of the gory incident broke me down.”
Also in Nigeria, armed Muslims stormed a Baptist church around 1 am, shot its pastor dead, and kidnapped his wife. “The abductors said we need to pay them N5 million [equivalent to about $15,000 USD] before they can release her to us,” said one local source. “You can imagine that they now have the gut to walk into people’s home, kill and abduct and also have an effrontery to demand for ransom. Where and how can we get that money?”
Jihad on Christian Churches in Egypt
At attempted suicide attack against a Christian church just outside of Cairo was foiled on August 11, near the start of the Eid al-Adha holiday. Only the bomber died on detonating an explosive belt near the church after police denied him entry; two others were injured. The church was targeted on that day because it was packed with hundreds of worshippers celebrating an annual holiday. It was later discovered that the jihadi cell responsible for the attack, which included two women, “had laced nails with poison to ensure that the blast would cause fatal injuries.” According to a local Christian teacher, “We are accustomed to this; that became the normal behavior at every feast or celebration, one terrorist trying to blow up a church or conduct violence like as an Eid gift.” Mina, a 22-year-old engineer, said, “Currently, I am no longer very interested in incidents, and all the talks are nothing, I look for chances to leave this state… I don’t belong here.”
Another eight churches were closed in one Egyptian province alone, Luxor, all of them “following attacks by Muslim villagers protesting against the church[es] being legally recognized,” said an August 29 report.
In one instance on August 22, while Christians were celebrating a feast day at the Virgin Mary Coptic Orthodox church, “A great deal of Muslim young men, aged 16-26, from our village and nearby gathered in front of our church building, shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ [Allah is greater] and chanting hostile slogans against Copts and the Church, such as ‘We don’t want a church in our Islamic village,’” recalled one church member. “They tried to break the front door … but we locked [it] from the inside. We immediately called the police who arrived and dispersed the demonstrators but they didn’t arrest anyone. They then closed the church building, sealed it and placed security guards with it.”
On August 25, in the village of Beni Suef, a Muslim “policeman tasked with guarding the church from extremists instead aggressively entered the church and hurled insults at the congregation, calling them infidels,” says another report. “The other policemen reportedly remained outside of the church during the incident…” Ibrahim, a member of the church, said, “The Christian villagers are very distressed and want a strong stand from official persons.”
In another incident on Friday, August 31, Muslims assaulted Christians in al-Minya because they “objected to the presence of a church in the area”; three Christians were hospitalized.
Discussing these violent Muslim protests followed by illegal church closures, Gamil Ayed, a local Coptic lawyer, said what many Egyptian Christians think: “We haven’t heard that a mosque was closed down, or that prayer was stopped in it because it was unlicensed. Is that justice? Where is the equality? Where is the religious freedom? Where is the law? Where are the state institutions?” “The gathering of Muslims causing a shutdown of churches in the process of legalization is bullying—not only of the Copts but also of the state,” said another human rights activist. “The non-implementation of the law has brought us a gang of hardliners who have become above the law.”
Jihad on Christians in Pakistan
Vicky Masih, a 35-year-old Christian man, was murdered when he met with Muslim acquaintances and asked them to repay a debt owed him on August 6, the day of his wedding anniversary. According to the report, “The claim for compensation triggered a discussion that soon degenerated into a violent clash. During the quarrel Muhammad Abbas, one of those present, opened fire. With his stomach pierced by bullets, Vicky begged for mercy, but the group continued to beat him ignoring his cries of pain. Eventually the Christian was abandoned agonizing on the street and the guilty parties fled.” According to the victim’s brother, “the police are conniving with the perpetrators, who are part of rich criminal families…. We want justice. We are poor and we do not have the strength to fight these thugs. We call upon all the people of God to help us and pray for the wife of Vicky and her three little children: now they are the most vulnerable and defenseless.”
Separately, a young Christian university student lost sight in one of his eyes during an armed attack by Muslims on his Christian household. For months earlier, neighborhood Muslims had been pressuring the Christian family—the only one on the street—to leave, including by teasing and mocking the young children for being Christian. According to Alvin John, the family head, “Soon after the Muslims started harassing us, I had made up my mind that I would not let my children suffer in this environment. I was waiting for the 12-month rental agreement to finish so that we could relocate … and start afresh. I wish I had the financial means to leave that neighborhood earlier.” Then, on the night of August 28, Muslims surrounded and pelted their home with stones and broke windows. “After the attackers left the scene, I told some neighbors who had gathered there that we were going to launch legal action and sought their assistance in the matter. However, around 11 p.m., some 30 armed Muslims attacked our house again, this time forcing their way into our home. Someone had informed them about our intention to approach the police, so they had come to ‘teach us a lesson.’” They beat the father and his two sons—blinding one in his left eye—as his wife and daughter “screamed in panic.” The “attackers also broke the furniture and ransacked our other belongings.”
In another incident, Muslim mobs attacked and ransacked Christian homes after a 19 year-old Muslim woman went missing and her father, Muhammad Hanif, accused Waheed, the 22-year-old son of one of the Christian households, of eloping with her. “All the Muslim residents flared up and shouted at us, saying they would burn our houses and cut us into pieces,” said Waheed’s brother, Nasir. The “imam announced more than once on the loudspeaker that all Muslims should gather at the centre of the village, and ‘Don’t let even a single Christian live in the village.’ Following this, a large number of Muslims gathered and then attacked the houses of the Christians.” Despite insisting that they did not know where the Muslim woman went, “The mob took my mother and beat her publicly,” said Nasir, adding that most of the men, bonded laborers, were at work at the time. “Someone alerted the police, who rescued her from the mob but then took her into custody to pressure us to produce Waheed at the police station,” which Nasir did. According to the report, eventually “Nabeela [the missing Muslim daughter] appeared in the magistrate’s court and requested to record a statement in which she submitted that she had run away to marry Muhammad Nazir Kashif—of her own freewill…. At this, the police released Waheed and his mother. But the police have not yet filed charges against the theft, ransacking and incitement to hate from the mosque loudspeaker…” Later, Nabeela filed an appeal saying that she was in fact abducted by Waheed and his brother, was repeatedly raped, but managed to escape. “These new charges are being used to pressurize Christians to withdraw their application seeking legal action against misuse of the mosque loudspeaker, and the theft and ransacking of our houses,” Nasir said. Even one police official admitted that “Nabeela has changed her statement so we are asking what statement she’s sticking to.”
In yet another incident, a group of Muslims thrashed Vishal Masih, an 18-year-old Christian, after he repeatedly defeated a Muslim teen at arm-wrestling on August 2. Angered for losing, the Muslim youth verbally abused Vishal and Christians as a whole: “How could a man of a dirty community defeat me? A Choora (Untouchable) defeats a Muslim is unbearable, I will teach him a lesson.” After the match, “while Vishal was on his way home, a gang of over a dozen young Muslims followed him and attacked. The gang brutally beat Vishal, attacked his family’s house, and beat his family members,” says the report. Then another Muslim gang attacked him. “[A]lthough Vishal survived the attack, it was as if they left him for dead. The gang then kidnapped the severely injured Vishal, locked him in a room at their residence, where they repeatedly beat him for the third time. After the assaults, Vishal was reportedly admitted to a hospital. His family is being pressured by influential Muslims to withdraw the case, otherwise they could be in more danger.”
Finally, “a charged mob of over 50 Muslim men … attacked” a group of Christians, including children, for trying to defend their church property. According to Bashir Masih, one of the victims,
Ahmad, a local landlord carries a dispute with the local Christians over a piece of land for years…The lower court of Kasur has already issued ‘stay-order’ for the piece of land for both the parties … However, the Muslim family wanted to grab the church property using their social and religious pressure…. On August 2, 2018, Ahmad tried to cultivate a piece of land with a tractor which belongs to the church. The local Christians requested him not to violate court orders, however, Ahmad abused the Christians and passed derogatory remarks against [the] church, stating, “Building a church is nonsense.”… Within no time, Ahmad’s armed companions attacked the Christian men, women, and children with arms and sticks. They left two seriously injured and other with minor injuries. The mob stoned the under-construction church as well.
The church, St. Matthews, which serves about 40 Catholic families, was built by the impoverished community’s own money. “When the Christians complained [to] the police about the attack, the police officials ordered them to keep quiet and avoid mentioning it as a religious issue… The police were unfair in the matter,” one of the locals said.
More Church Attacks
Uganda: After months of being pelted by stones hurled by local Muslims, a church finally shut its doors on Sunday, August 4. Then, a stone hurled through a window of Greater Love Church struck the pastor in the forehead and rendered her unconscious. Pastor Moreen Sanyu was delivering a sermon when the projectile broke through the window. “I fell down and became unconscious,” she said. “When I woke up, there were only a few members who surrounded me—the rest of the church members had fled in different directions.” No one came to the following Sunday worship service. Just outside Kampala, the nation’s capital, the church was in a predominantly Muslim area. Because some Muslims began to attend the church, other Muslims began to hurl stones at it: “We cannot watch our children joining infidels’ church,” explained a local sheikh. “The throwing of stones broke glass windows and destroyed a solar panel, and as well there was the uttering of abusive and threatening words to me and my church members,” the pastor said. Two months after its opening in May 2017, and due to the constant stoning, the congregation went from 400 to 150, until the August 4 incident, when membership dropped to zero. “I am not ready to lose my life by attending the church,” admitted one anonymous church member. “I need prayers and material support to relocate to another area at this trying moment,” said the pastor.
Nigeria: Christians are denied places of worship all throughout the Muslim-majority northern regions, even near and in supposedly progressive universities, said Catholic Bishop Matthew Kukah during a speech:
As I’m talking here now, … Christians don’t have a place to worship after over 40 years of the existence of these universities and these are the areas where the intellectuals, those who are going to govern Nigeria, this is where they are…. Up till today, as I’m talking to you, you can’t find a single governor in northern Nigeria that will effortlessly sign a certificate of occupancy for the building of a church. Nowhere… Northern Nigeria is literally a closed book. And our inability to understand northern Nigeria collectively as a nation accounts for most of the crisis we still face in this country.
Meanwhile, the education Muslim children receive in northern Nigeria perpetuates the animosity for Christian houses of worship, said the bishop:
I have windows of my churches broken because young children are throwing stones at the cathedral. I had one of my parishioners went blind three years ago. His house was by the roadside. Children coming from Quranic studies threw stones to his house. I’m asking the question, what are these children being taught about the other person? This is a very serious crisis in northern Nigeria.
Attacks on Apostates
Iran: A court sentenced twelve Christians, most of whom had apostatized from Islam, to one year in prison on the “charge of propaganda activities against the system and in favor of Zionist Christianity through holding house meetings, evangelism, and invitation to Christianity and inclination to the land of Christianity,” says the August 11 report. Payam Kharaman, one of the convicted converts, said “the pressure and harassment of the security forces on me began in early 2012, and I was repeatedly summoned … and interrogated about evangelism and communication with abroad, and I always insisted on the belief in Christianity for myself and not for promotion of Christianity.” The accusation that Payam had an “Inclination to the land of Christianity” may be a reference to Israel, where Christianity was born, and its use indicates that court officials “were looking for the accused’s confession to communication with abroad, especially America, Britain and Israel, and this term has originated from this matter.” Another report adds that, “based on the cases we have been tracking, this is the first time this year that we’ve seen a jail sentence being given based on the charge of ‘inclination to the land of Christianity.’ This could be interpreted as a reference to Israel, the birthplace of Christianity and also a country that Iran has adopted a very aggressive stance towards.”
Separately, another convert to Christianity, Naser Navard Gol-Tapeh, inquired about the charge he was convicted for: “Action against national security through the establishment of house churches.” In an August, 2018, open letter to the Iranian court that sentenced him to ten years in prison, he asked, “is the fellowship of a few Christian brothers and sisters in someone’s home, singing worship songs, reading the Bible and worshiping God acting against national security? Isn’t it a clear violation of civil and human rights, and an absolute injustice to receive a ten-year prison sentence just for organizing ‘house churches…’” Iran is widely considered one of the top ten worst nations where Christians experience “extreme persecution.”
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/19/2018 10:36 AM by Bobbie Patray
Wednesday, 19 December 2018
100 Christians snatched in overnight raids on underground Chinese church
About 100 worshippers at an unofficial church in southwestern China were snatched from their homes or from the streets in coordinated raids which began on Sunday evening.
Chinese authorities targeted members of the Early Rain Covenant Church across various districts of Chengdu, the provincial capital of Sichuan, in what appeared to be an effort to close down one of the country’s most prominent Protestant house churches.
Members’ personal accounts and cell group discussions on social media channels were blocked at around 9pm on Sunday while the church’s telephone line was also cut. The homes of the church’s leaders, including pastor Wang Yi, were among those raided.
Zhang Guoqing, assistant deacon of the Early Rain Covenant Church, was among two church members who were released on Monday morning after his arrest by Chengdu police in the Sunday night raids.
He is now being watched around the clock by “security personnel” in his home.
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/19/2018 10:35 AM by Bobbie Patray
Wednesday, 19 December 2018
China cracks down on Christians -- a new era of religious persecution has arrived
Zion Church in Beijing is the largest in China’s burgeoning Protestant underground. In September, the 11-year-old house church was sealed shut by the government.
Its crime? Zion’s pastor, Dr. Ezra Mingri Jin, a graduate of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, had rejected an intolerable Chinese Communist Party (CCP) directive to mount face-recognition cameras on his pulpit, turned on the congregation. For his refusal, the pastor and virtually all of Zion’s 1,500 members have been detained, searched and questioned by public security – some more than once.
And the worst may be yet to come. Their police records will now be used in China’s new Orwellian social credit score system to deny them access to government trains, planes, schools, pensions and other benefits.
All of China’s more than 100 million Protestants and Catholics are bracing to have their faith severely tested in a harsh, all-enveloping crackdown.
The government’s repression against the churches is being done in the name of President Xi Jinping’s “sinicization” campaign, ostensibly to strengthen Chinese culture. However, it increasingly appears aimed at removing the Bible and its teachings from Chinese Christianity.
Earlier this year, President Xi issued draconian new regulations for religious affairs and charged the officially atheist CCP with enforcing them. Sophisticated technology, combined with iron fist policing, are now being used to suppress China’s booming Protestant and Catholic Church.
A staggering 100,000 or more Christians are estimated to have been arrested this year, compared to 3,700 in 2017, according to ChinaAid – a Christian human rights organization which promotes religious freedom and rule of law in China. Most of these, as with Zion Church’s, involved short term detentions.
Particularly targeted are “underground” churches that are not registered with the Chinese government, principally because these Christians do not want the oversight and control that comes with registration. As we write, word comes that some 100 Christians with the underground Early Rain Covenant Church in Chengdu have been rounded up and detained. Some claim “rape and abuse” by police.
Pastor Ezra is part of the Protestant underground, estimated by a leading China expert at Perdue University to serve all but 30 million of China’s 93 to 115 million Protestants. He and over 400 other Protestant underground pastors have signed onto a courageous declaration, on file at ChinaAid. In it, they affirm their resolve to meet this unfolding persecution with faithfulness and peaceful resistance, stating, in part: “For when churches refuse to obey evil laws, it does not stem from any political agenda; it does not stem from resentment or hostility; it stems only from the demands of the gospel and from a love for Chinese society.”
Despite the Vatican’s agreement with Beijing on the appointment of bishops in September of this year, about a dozen Catholic priests have been jailed since its signing. In November, Bishop Peter Shao Zhumin of Wenzhou underwent two weeks of state indoctrination and interrogation – his fifth detention in two years.
And some Chinese Christians spend years in prison. Catholic Bishop James Su Zhimin of Boading has languished in prison for 20 years after leading a Mass without government permission. The government refuses to provide any information on him.
An American resident is among China’s religious prisoners. Pastor John Sanqiang Cao of North Carolina was sentenced last March to seven years for “organizing illegal border crossings” after opening schools and delivering humanitarian aid in Burma. He reportedly shares a cell and one bed with a dozen inmates, and has lost 50 pounds.
Minors are now banned from entering any church. Online sales of Bibles are blocked. The Catholic Catechism is censored. Churches report that their crosses and other Christian symbols are being torn down and sometimes replaced with pictures of none other than President Xi himself.
Since February, thousands of churches have been forced shut. It’s particularly chilling that many of the 10,000 Protestant churches closed in one province were actually government-approved ones. In addition, this September, the government-approved Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Henan saw its priest detained and defrocked by the state-sponsored Patriotic Catholic Association, reportedly for organizing parish fellowship groups for the youth and elderly.
As these examples show, the repression is not limited to the underground churches. These incidents flag that President Xi intends to curtail all of China’s various Christian communities or possibly even eliminate them.
We have only to look at the suffering of western China’s Uighur Muslims – a million of whom have been confined to indoctrination camps – to be certain that President Xi is ruthlessly ushering in a new era of intense religious persecution.
An eloquent vow from the pastors’ declaration should be both a warning and an inspiration for us: “Christian churches in China are eager and determined to walk the path of the cross of Christ and are more than willing to imitate the older generation of saints who suffered and were martyred for their faith.”
As Christians worldwide celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ two thousand years ago, these new Christians and all others persecuted for their faith in China must not be forgotten.
We should call on our political and religious leaders to urgently speak up for them and to strenuously press President Xi to respect religious freedom.
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/19/2018 10:32 AM by Bobbie Patray
Wednesday, 19 December 2018
Christian women face 6-months in jail for refusing to use their artwork to promote same-sex weddings.
Two artists from Phoenix, Arizona are facing 6 months in jail and heavy fines for refusing to create custom artworks promoting same-sex weddings.
The Arizona Court of Appeals ruled that Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski, owners of Brush & Nib Studio, are required by Phoenix law to create artwork for same-sex wedding ceremonies because they “cannot discriminate against potential patrons based on sexual orientation.”
According to Life Site News, “Not only are the Christian women threatened with jail time and fines should they refuse to create artwork celebrating gay ‘marriage’ because of Phoenix law, they could also be prosecuted for publishing a statement on their website explaining that their religious convictions prohibit them from doing so.”
The Court of Appeals ruled that Duka and Koski’s case was “one of a blanket refusal of service to the LGBTQ community,” despite the fact that the women were willing to serve any customer regardless of “sexual orientation.”
As Christians, the women declined to produce custom messages endorsing events that violated their religious convictions, however the court ruled that their artistic services were not “entitled to First Amendment free speech protections.”
Click here to read full article and watch video.
Posted on 12/19/2018 10:30 AM by Bobbie Patray
Tuesday, 18 December 2018
TUCKER INTERVIEWS TEACHER FIRED AFTER REFUSING TO CALL TRANS STUDENT BY PREFERRED PRONOUNS
Tucker Carlson interviewed a high school teacher and his lawyer on Monday night. The teacher was fired earlier this month for refusing to use a trans student’s preferred pronouns.
Peter Vlaming, a former French teacher at West Point High School, told his superiors that he was willing to call the student by their preferred name, but refused to call them their ideal pronouns because it contradicted his Christian faith. He was fired for violating the school’s non-discrimination policies.
“The first question I think in most people’s minds is going to be, did you in some way to insult the student? Were you cruel to the student? Was there something untoward that you said to the student?” Carlson began. (RELATED: Federal Court Sides With Trans Student Barred From Preferred School Bathroom)
“Not at all. I love and respect all of my students including the student in question. I did everything I could to accommodate the student’s new identity,” Vlaming responded. “I used the new name, I avoided feminine pronouns, but male pronouns were a bridge too far. But I did everything in my power to accommodate and show respect towards this student and this student’s choices.”
“So you never attacked the student or said I disagree with what you’re doing or belittled the student or anything like that?” Carlson asked.
Vlaming added, “Not at all and it’s not my place as a public school teacher to give my view on that subject. I’m a French teacher, I teach French.”
“To our understanding, this is the first time in the country. We should make clear, Tucker, all we are asking for is that tolerance be a two-way street here. He respected the student. All he has asked for is that the respect be extended to him and to his rights,” Shawn Voyles, Vlaming’s lawyer, interjected. “Pete was actually fired for what he would not say.”
Click here to read the full article.
Posted on 12/18/2018 7:52 AM by Bobbie Patray
Tuesday, 18 December 2018
ANTIFA ACCUSED OF ATTACKING MARINES. CNN’S DON LEMON AND CHRIS CUOMO ONCE EXCUSED ANTIFA VIOLENCE
Two U.S. Marines testified last week that they were attacked by a “mob” of Antifa members who mistook them for participants in a right-wing rally in November.
Alejandro Godinez and Luis Torres testified in a Philadelphia, PA courtroom that they were attending a local event for Marines last month when they were confronted by members of Antifa, including suspects Thomas Massey and Tom Keenan.
Keenan allegedly demanded to know if Godinez and Torres were members of the Proud Boys, a right-wing group that was demonstrating nearby at the time. Godinez explained that he and Torres are Marines, but said that, nonetheless, the group of 10 to 12 Antifa members began mercilessly attacking them.
According to the Marines’ testimony, their attackers started calling them “Nazis” and “white supremacists” while they punched and kicked them. Godinez shouted, “I’m Mexican!” which allegedly caused the attackers to start calling them ethnic slurs like “spic” and “wetback.”
Godinez said he was maced, punched in the head and kicked in the ribs. When the attack was over, Torres called 911 and the pair went to the hospital. Godinez still reportedly has eye issues from being maced and said he may need surgery in the future to deal with his other injuries.
Antifa is a group of self-proclaimed “anti-fascists” who believe in combatting their ideological opponents with violent tactics. The group has been lionized by anchors and personalities at CNN, including but not limited to Chris Cuomo and Don Lemon. (RELATED: Five Times The Establishment Media Excused Antifa Violence)
Cuomo infamously compared Antifa activists to soldiers on D-Day and said on his show that he does not believe “all punches are equal.”
Lemon said in August, “No organization is perfect, there was some violence. No one condones the violence. But there were different reasons for Antifa and for these neo-Nazis to be there. One, racist fascists, the other group fighting racist fascists. There’s a distinction there.”
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/18/2018 7:51 AM by Bobbie Patray
Monday, 17 December 2018
Scientist Tells Congress: “We Do Not Need Body Parts From Aborted Babies to Treat Patients”
During a Congressional hearing today, a leading scientist informed members of Congress that research with body parts from aborted babies has never been needed to treat patients or find cures for diseases.
Tara Sander Lee, Ph.D. is an Associate Scholar with the Charlotte Lozier Institute. She earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry and did post-doctorate work at both Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital in molecular and cell biology, later establishing her own lab to study congenital heart disease and vascular disorders in children.
“We do not need fetal body parts from aborted babies to achieve future scientific and medical advancements. Very little research is actually being done that currently relies on abortion – derived fetal tissue,” Dr. Lee said.
Lee added: “In the case of vaccines, cells derived from aborted fetal tissue have been used in the development process, but fetal tissues have NEVER been the exclusive means necessary
for these breakthroughs. Instead, monkey cells, chicken eggs, and non – fetal human cells are used to produce vaccines for polio, measles, and mumps. The vast majority of scientists are focusing on other ethical tissue sources and models that work just as well, if not better. If we stopped harvesting fresh tissues from aborted fetuses today, it will not stop one person from being treated or vaccinated today nor will it inhibit the development of new vaccines going forward.”
“After over 100 years of research, NO therapies have been discovered or developed that require aborted fetal tissue. History has shown us that we never needed fetal tissue,” the stem cell research scientist added.
Lee said patients would be better off if government funded alternatives to using aborted baby parts.
“In conclusion, it is clearly evident that numerous ethical alternatives exist and are available to researchers for studying some of the most complex diseases and disorders facing our nation today. I urge Congress and the Trump administration to stop using federal dollars to support aborted fetal tissue research and redirect funding to these ethical alternatives. If we continue to invest in fetal tissue research, this will delay future progress and advances using better and more ethical science,” she said.
The good news is the Trump administration is doing just that.
The Trump administration issued a plan Monday to promote ethical alternatives to aborted baby body parts in scientific research.
The grants, under the National Institute of Health, will provide $20 million to develop alternatives to “human fetal tissue obtained from elective abortions,” according to the notice published Monday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Over the past few months, pro-life groups and conservative news outlets have been uncovering new details about government spending on aborted baby parts for research. Some of these contracts have used tax dollars to pay for body parts of healthy, late-term aborted babies – including potentially viable unborn babies up to 24 weeks. The NIH, an agency under HHS, has given about $100 million to these research contracts.
The Trump administration has been exploring options to end the contracts and support research that uses ethical alternatives. And in September, it canceled a Food and Drug Administration contract to acquire body parts from aborted babies to be transplanted into mice.
This new move signals the administration is continuing to address the problem.
According to the HHS notice, the NIH soon will seek “applications to develop and/or further refine human tissue models that closely mimic and can be used to accurately model human embryonic development or other aspects of human biology and that do not rely on the use of human fetal tissue obtained from elective abortions.”
Click here to read full article.
Posted on 12/17/2018 9:45 AM by Bobbie Patray
Monday, 17 December 2018
Court Stops Obamacare Mandate From Forcing Christian Groups to Fund Abortions
A federal district court issued an order Tuesday that permanently prevents the federal government from enforcing the Affordable Care Act’s abortion-pill mandate against six Christian organizations represented by Alliance Defending Freedom. The order also declares that the mandate violates the organizations’ rights protected by the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
The previous administration’s mandate forces most employers, regardless of their religious or moral convictions, to provide abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization, and contraception through their health plans under threat of heavy penalties. The current administration’s Department of Justice abandoned its defense of the flawed mandate.
“Religious organizations have the freedom to peacefully operate according to their beliefs without the threat of punishment by the government. Tuesday’s order fully affirms that freedom and provides permanent protection from the mandate,” said ADF Senior Counsel Gregory S. Baylor.
“These faith-based organizations no longer have to fear being forced to pay fines for simply abiding by the Christian beliefs that they teach and espouse, and they are no longer required to fill out forms authorizing coverage for abortion-inducing drugs, contraception, and sterilization,” Baylor explained. “The government has many other ways to ensure access to these items without forcing people of faith to violate their deepest convictions.”
The six organizations—Association of Christian Schools International, Samaritan Ministries International, Taylor University, Indiana Wesleyan University, Asbury Theological Seminary, and ADF—specifically object to providing coverage for abortifacients.
“First, plaintiffs have demonstrated that requiring them to comply with [the mandate], to the extent such compliance conflicts with plaintiffs’ sincerely held religious beliefs, violates plaintiffs’ rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act…. Second, plaintiffs will suffer irreparable harm unless defendants are enjoined from interfering with plaintiffs’ practice of their religious beliefs.…,” the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado wrote in its order in Association of Christian Schools International v. Azar, adding that “the public interest in the vindication of religious freedom favors the entry of a permanent injunction.”
Other federal district courts have issued similar orders in recent months for Christian organizations in Oklahoma, Indiana, California, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Florida. ADF attorneys and allied attorneys continue to litigate numerous other lawsuits against the mandate.
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Posted on 12/17/2018 9:43 AM by Bobbie Patray
Monday, 17 December 2018
Democrats Introduce Bill Requiring U.S. to Call Abortion a “Human Right”
Pro-abortion Democrats introduced a bill in the U.S. House this week that would force the government to declare the killing of unborn babies a “human right.”
The pro-abortion bill, the Reproductive Rights are Human Rights Act, would require the U.S. State Department to include abortion on demand and other reproductive rights in its annual human rights report. It is a reaction to the Trump administration, which, earlier this year, prioritized real human rights issues by removing references to the so-called “right” to abort an unborn child from the report.
“Documenting and reporting human rights violations is a major part of eradicating their existence,” said pro-abortion Rep. Katherine Clark, of Massachusetts, a sponsor of the bill. “This bill would ensure that our State Department maintains its vital role as an international watchdog and protector of women’s rights no matter the ideology of our White House.”
Other sponsors include U.S. Reps. Nita Lowey, of New York, Eliot Engel, of New York, Barbara Lee, of California, and Lois Frankel, of Florida. They claimed the Trump administration’s decision was “dramatic and dangerous,” and one abortion activist claimed removing abortion from the report put “real lives in danger.”
The report represents a significant change from pro-abortion President Barack Obama’s administration, which promoted the killing of unborn babies for any reason up to birth as a woman’s “right.”
In contrast, the Trump administration has been focusing on policies that protect both women and their unborn children.
Responding to criticism about the report, the State Department said it is not “downgrading coverage of … women’s issues.” Rather, it now will focus on ending the most “egregious” of human rights abuses against women and families in the world, including forced abortion and sterilization.
Under the pro-abortion Obama administration, one section of the report was called “Reproductive Rights.” The Trump administration removed that section and added a new one called “Coercion in Population Control.”
But abortion activists — who ignore forced/coerced abortions that truly violate a woman’s “right to choose” — want abortion on demand to be the core of women’s rights issues.
“Women’s rights are human rights,” said Rep. Frankel in a statement about the bill. “There is no greater right for women than to be in charge of their own bodies.”
Planned Parenthood, the Center for Reproductive Rights, NARAL and 42 other organizations endorsed the pro-abortion legislation. Many of them also promoted it Monday on social media in connection with Human Rights Day.
“This erasure puts real lives in danger,” said NARAL President Ilyse Hogue. “Using backdoor tactics to erase all mention of reproductive rights—including abortion, contraception, and maternal mortality—from vital reports and resources in order to push an extreme, ideological agenda is a true testament to just how dangerous and corrupt this administration is.”
Planned Parenthood’s new president, Leana Wen, also thanked the pro-abortion House Democrats for introducing the bill.
“Thank you for standing up for the basic notion that reproductive rights are human rights,” Wen tweeted.
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Posted on 12/17/2018 9:41 AM by Bobbie Patray
Monday, 17 December 2018
Mother Who Was Raped and Rejected Abortion: “My Son is a Reminder Love is Stronger Than Hate”
A mother who became pregnant after being violently raped has said that her son brought healing to their family in their darkest time.
US speaker Jennifer Christie was speaking with her husband Jeff at the March For Life in Valetta on Sunday, organised by Life Network Foundation Malta.
Hope after appalling attack
Jennifer recounted how, while working away from home, she was violently assaulted on the way back to her hotel room. The attack left her with broken fingers and ribs, and the internal injuries were so severe she needed six major surgeries. She also suffered a bleed on the brain – which means she now has epilepsy. Six weeks later, she found out she was pregnant.
Jennifer had been living in an “unrecognisable world” of “darkness and pain”, but when she saw the baby’s heartbeat on the ultrasound, “for the first time since I had been raped, I felt that life inside me again…that little flicker on the screen was to me hope and joy and light.”
Her husband Jeff was immediately supportive of her need to give birth to the baby, telling her: “this is a gift. This baby is something beautiful out of something so terrible and so painful.”
The Christies’ testimony challenged the assumptions usually made about women who conceive babies through rape. Jennifer said: “People will tell you that a raped woman who conceives will feel rage and anger and disgust towards her baby, and I’ve spoken to hundreds and hundreds of women, and that is just not true.” When Jeff is asked how he can bring up a “rapist’s baby” as is own, he says: “My answer is, I don’t know what it’s like to raise a rapist’s child. Because I’m raising our child, and he’s been our child from the beginning.”
One of the main reasons people advise abortion for women in this awful situation is that the baby will be a reminder of the attack, and of the rapist. However, Jennifer says that no woman who has been raped is going to forget it, whether she has the baby or not. “When people ask me if he is a reminder, I tell them honestly…he is a reminder that good can come from evil, every time. He is a reminder that love is always stronger than hate. He is a reminder that love wins. He is a reminder that who we become as human beings is not determined by how we start.”
“We loved you louder.”
She said that when her son is older, they will tell him that he brought healing to the family. “We’re going to tell him that there were all these people screaming at us that you should not be here, that you are a child from rape, that you do not deserve to be here. And those voices were loud, but we loved you louder.”
Speaking to press, Jennifer said that she was not there to judge women, but to tell those who suffer in the same way she did that “the path to healing and wholeness is not found through more violence and trauma.”
The large crowd gathered outside Parliament to hear the Christies included former Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi. Life Network Foundation chairperson Miriam Sciberas said that the March was an ideal opportunity to let politicians know that society wanted to protect the life of the unborn, and that life started from conception. The powerful testimony of Jennifer and Jeff Christie is sure to inspire pro-lifers in Malta and across the world.
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Posted on 12/17/2018 9:39 AM by Bobbie Patray