Faith in the News

For those deep thinkers out there.
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Cleon
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Re: Faith in the News

Post by Cleon » Thu Jan 16, 2020 9:10 am

wosbald wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:22 pm
+JMJ+

The Falkirk Center for Faith & Liberty
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The mission of the Falkirk Center at Liberty University is to equip courageous champions to proclaim the truth of Jesus Christ, to advance his kingdom and American freedom.

[…]

Bemoaning the rise of leftism is no longer enough, and turning the other cheek in our personal relationships with our neighbors as Jesus taught while abdicating our responsibilities on the cultural battlefield is no longer sufficient. There is too much at stake in the battle for the soul of our nation. Bold, unapologetic action and initiative is needed, which is why we just launched the Falkirk Center, a think tank dedicated to restoring and defending American ideals and Judeo-Christian values in all aspects of life.

Founded by Liberty University President, Jerry Falwell Jr. and Turning Point USA President, Charlie Kirk, the principles of the Falkirk Center transcend generational divides and withstand cultural trends, as we believe they are rooted in compelling, enduring, absolute truths. As the creeds of secularism are proving fragile and unsatisfying to millions of Americans, there has never been a better time to fill this void and amplify these truths.

[…]

Accomplishing this requires more than adding noise to the echo chamber. It requires an army of bold ambassadors equipped with Judeo-Christian and Constitutional knowledge to speak truth to believers and unbelievers alike in every professional field and public forum. This includes Christian leaders and influencers of all ages and backgrounds defending, explaining, and sharing their beliefs on all platforms and sectors of society. That is the function and the moral mission of the Falkirk Center. We will go on offense in the name of Judeo-Christian principles and in the name of exceptional, God-given American liberties.

[…]
Bemoaning the rise of leftism is no longer enough, and turning the other cheek in our personal relationships with our neighbors as Jesus taught while abdicating our responsibilities on the cultural battlefield is no longer sufficient.
Holy cow. The foundation of their argument is completely off kilter. Whiny, even.
"Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven" - Jesus

"More people need to put their big boy britches on." - JMG

"Dang, a pipe slap." - JimVH

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wosbald
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Re: Faith in the News

Post by wosbald » Mon Jan 20, 2020 12:45 pm

+JMJ+

Muslim world leaders visit Auschwitz in 'strong signal' of interfaith support [In-Depth]
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Few Muslims have visited the notorious site of some of history's worst atrocities. But high-ranking leaders of Muslim and Jewish communities are coming together to mark 75 years since the concentration camp's liberation.

In 2013, the leader of Berlin's Social Democratic parliamentary group, Raed Saleh, visited the Auschwitz-Birkenau memorial site with a group of pupils. The fact that Saleh, who was born in the West Bank and came to Germany as a 5-year-old, made his way to the site of a former Nazi concentration and extermination camp garnered national attention. At the time, he was Germany's most prominent Muslim to ever visit the site where Nazis murdered more than 1.1 million people, most of them Jews, during the Holocaust.

"There was this pupil called Mustafa, a really big guy, standing in front of a vast pile of children's shoes," said Saleh, recalling the visit to bloc 5 of Auschwitz-Birkenau camp. "Each pair had once belonged to a child obviously, and suddenly I noticed how this realization did something with Mustafa." The lawmaker says the pupils in his group had "diverse, multi-religious backgrounds" in Berlin and that "anti-Semitism among young Muslims is not uncommon."

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Though millions visit the Auschwitz every year, few Muslims are among them.

[…]

On Thursday, the memorial site will be visited by the most senior Muslim figure to date: Sheikh Mohammed al-Eissa, the secretary general of the Muslim World League, who represents over a billion Muslims worldwide. Al-Eissa, who previously served as Saudi justice minister, will make his way to the former camp with David Harris, the director of the American Jewish Committee (AJC). This joint visit by a high-ranking 54-year-old Islamic scholar and a 70-year-old descendant of Holocaust survivors is nothing short of remarkable.

[…]

'Shook humanity to the core'

Roughly two years prior to this visit, al-Eissa sent a letter to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, in which he expressed "great sympathy with the victims of the Holocaust, an incident that shook humanity to the core." He underlined that "true Islam is against these crimes" and that "we consider any denial of the Holocaust or minimizing of its effect a crime to distort history and an insult to the dignity of those innocent souls who have perished."

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Al-Eissa has urged 'all Muslims to learn the history of the Holocaust, to visit memorials and museums to this horrific event.'

Following his visit to the museum in May 2018, he described how it made him feel in an op-ed in The Washington Post: "I saw for myself the mountains of evidence — the videos, the photos, the placards, the interviews, the memorabilia — that testify to the historic truth of the Holocaust. One doesn't have to go to the museum to recognize the enormity of the Holocaust — but no one who does come to the museum can deny it."

[…]

In response to al-Eissa's initiative, the president of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, Marc Schneier, penned an opinion piece in The Jerusalem Post, supporting him and arguing that there exists "a false narrative out there that Muslims are inveterately hostile to Jews." Schneier, who has long worked to foster Judeo-Muslim dialogue and understanding, continued to say that "Muslims are speaking out — and acting out — every day in defense of Jews who are under attack."

Thinking back to his Auschwitz visit, Berlin lawmaker Raed Saleh said that going there was not about feeling "guilty," and that the visit of a senior Muslim leader like al-Eissa will send "a good, strong signal." Saleh said it is important to him to see his generation, and the one after it, keep the memory of the Holocaust alive. This, he told DW, "is the best antidote against right-wing extremism, anti-Semitism and xenophobia." And Saleh believes the young, Muslim pupils who accompanied him on his Auschwitz visit were profoundly touched by the experience. "It was moving. I saw them asking questions that never came up before."

[…]

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"[T]he emergency of irregular migration has to be met with justice, solidarity and mercy. Forms of collective expulsion, which do not allow for the suitable treatment of individual cases, are unacceptable."
— Pope Francis, Morocco

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wosbald
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Re: Faith in the News

Post by wosbald » Thu Jan 30, 2020 5:31 pm

+JMJ+

Evangelicals embrace Trump's peace plan, saying it recognizes the Bible 'as legal' [In-Depth]
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President Donald Trump speaks during an event with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020. (AP/Susan Walsh)

To many evangelicals and ardent Christian Zionists, God promised the land of Israel to the Jews and to the Jews alone.

The belief comes, at least in part, from the Book of Genesis which recounts of the covenant God made with Abraham:

“The whole land of Canaan, where you now reside as a foreigner, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you" (Genesis 17:8).

Yet on Jan. 28, when President Donald Trump unveiled his long-awaited plan for peace between Israel and the Palestinians, which calls for some land swaps with Palestinians and a Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem, his evangelical advisers congratulated him for it.

Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas who attended the unveiling in Washington, called the proposal "courageous and compassionate."

The Rev. Johnnie Moore, another evangelical adviser, said it was "nuanced, realistic and comprehensive."

Pastor John Hagee, chairman of Christians United for Israel, said it was “the best peace proposal any American administration has ever put forth.”

For years, Hagee has defended Israel’s right to make decisions free of international interference or pressure.

"God did not make a covenant with Washington, D.C.,” Hagee said in 2011. “He made a covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And that covenant stands. It is still the covenant.”

But Trump’s plan, developed with adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner and announced alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, is as close to the biblical ideal as Israel is likely to get, evangelicals said.

[…]

Evangelical leaders who were briefed on the proposal during the three years it took to draft it said the plan was close to biblical, mindful that even Abraham divided his property with Lot, his nephew, after a quarrel.

“From our perspective what he’s done is recognize the Bible as legal,” said Mike Evans, a Christian Zionist who heads the Jerusalem Prayer Team, referring to Trump’s plan to apply Israeli law to parts of the West Bank.

Evans, who attended the unveiling ceremony, said he had talked beforehand to Kushner as well as Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s Israel adviser; David Friedman, the U.S. ambassador to Israel; and Avi Berkowitz, another Trump adviser.

[…]

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"[T]he emergency of irregular migration has to be met with justice, solidarity and mercy. Forms of collective expulsion, which do not allow for the suitable treatment of individual cases, are unacceptable."
— Pope Francis, Morocco

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wosbald
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Re: Faith in the News

Post by wosbald » Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:02 am

+JMJ+

American Paganism [in-Depth, Opinion]
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Border-patrol agents detain migrants near the U.S.-Mexico border. (John Moore/Getty Images News)

It’s not what the Religious Right thinks it is.

[…]

In the first place, the term “paganism” only works in this maneuver because it is vague and perspectival. It always has been, ever since Christians invented it. Ancient Christians stuck the name on those who continued the traditional rites of Greco-Roman religion rather than adopt the true faith. Indeed the largely urban Christians meant it as a mild pejorative for the rural country bumpkins, the pagani, who lived far from imperial centers and persisted in their benighted worship of the old gods. In our terms, the first “pagans” lived in flyover country and clung to their traditional religion.

Since “pagan” has come to mean “un-Christian,” every invocation of “pagan” brings with it an implicit understanding of “Christian.” The meaning of the former is parasitic on the latter. Misunderstanding the essence of paganism, therefore, also means misunderstanding the demands of Christianity, and vice versa.

More left-leaning Christians might well agree with [Steven D.] Smith and [R.R.] Reno in one sense: there is indeed an ascendant paganism afoot in our country today. It threatens the social and moral fabric of American public life and contends directly against the voice of Christian truth. One can brook no compromise in resisting it. The difference comes in how that paganism is defined. The debate is not whether paganism is real, but where it lives, how it appears, and what it does. If conservatives have mistaken its location, they might be training their weapons in the wrong direction.

Much hangs, then, on accurately discerning the meaning of “modern paganism.” Let us consider three proposals: Steven Smith’s recent version, T. S. Eliot’s original version, and another timely version from First Things.

[…]

If there was an ancient paganism of sacred immanence, it was soon outstripped by the more radical immanence of Christians in their claims of an Incarnation, a Resurrection, and above all the enduring food of the Eucharist. In every Mass the priest washes his hands in imitation of the pagan Pilate, but now as an act of humility and celebration. The Catholic repeats as her own the words of the pagan centurion — Lord, I am not worthy — but now as an intimate prayer on the threshold of Communion. That version of paganism was overtaken and dissolved from within by the Christian sacralization of the body.

But there is another paganism that has survived into the present, and has emerged so vividly in contemporary politics that even First Things in 2016 could not miss it. This is not the paganism of immanence, but the paganism of cruelty and violence. It mocks the vulnerable, reviles the weak, and gains strength through hatred. We don’t have to look too far to discover the “postmodern paganism” threatening American Christianity today.

[…]

This modern paganism ultimately means the nihilistic exercise of power for its own sake, especially power over weak and vulnerable bodies. In its purest form, it is expressed as conspicuous cruelty, both to render one’s power maximally visible and to increase that power by engendering fear. The cruelty is the point. This is the joyful paganism that Nietzsche sought to revive as the Wille zur Macht, retrieving from ancient Rome the glorious pleasure in cruelty that rewards the strong who exercise their strength. This is the reason Italian fascist Julius Evola hated Christianity for its compassion for the poor and weak.

We find this paganism exposed in the ancient world as well, in the Athenian mockery and massacre of the Melians in Thucydides’s History of the Peloponnesian War, in Thrasymachus’s authoritarian attacks on Socrates in Plato’s Republic, or in Augustine’s shrewd deconstruction of imperial power in The City of God against the Pagans. John Milbank calls this Nietzschean worldview an ontology of eternal violence opposed to an Augustinian counter-ontology of eternal peace. As Schmitz himself suggests, the perfect example of pagan disdain for vulnerability and conspicuous cruelty is the Roman practice of public crucifixion. Pagan is to Christian not as immanent is to transcendent, but as Rome is to the Crucified — a cruel empire to its tortured victims.

But modern paganism can also assume subtler forms, whenever the common good is reduced to ruthless economic competition, confirming Eliot’s fears that we have no values more essential than our “belief in compound interest and the maintenance of dividends.” The paganism we should fear is not secularism, sacred immanence, or pantheist naturalism. It is power celebrating its violence, perceiving the world empty of everything save the contest of wills, a nihilism ruled by the libido dominandi.

This paganism views moral responsibility as a fool’s errand for the weak, since all that matters is to dominate or be dominated. It sacralizes the emperor as an agent of God, scorns truth, despises the weak, and tortures the vulnerable. And it cloaks its nihilism, to cite Eliot once again, in “a disguised and peculiarly sanctimonious nationalism, accelerating our progress toward the paganism which we say we abhor.”

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"[T]he emergency of irregular migration has to be met with justice, solidarity and mercy. Forms of collective expulsion, which do not allow for the suitable treatment of individual cases, are unacceptable."
— Pope Francis, Morocco

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Re: Faith in the News

Post by wosbald » Fri Feb 07, 2020 11:10 am

+JMJ+



ImageImage

"[T]he emergency of irregular migration has to be met with justice, solidarity and mercy. Forms of collective expulsion, which do not allow for the suitable treatment of individual cases, are unacceptable."
— Pope Francis, Morocco

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Re: Faith in the News

Post by hugodrax » Fri Feb 07, 2020 12:08 pm

wosbald wrote:
Fri Feb 07, 2020 11:10 am
+JMJ+


See the value of feudalism yet?

It has something for everybody.
Notre Dame de Paris, priez pour nous y comprise les Jesuites.

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Re: Faith in the News

Post by wosbald » Tue Feb 18, 2020 10:59 pm

+JMJ+

Trump critic Russell Moore, ERLC to face scrutiny by Southern Baptists
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Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, speaks June 12, 2019, during the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex in Birmingham, Alabama. (RNS photo by Butch Dill)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (RNS) — The Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee will launch a task force to examine the activities of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, the convention’s public policy organization headed by the theologian and author Russell Moore.

Southern Baptist leaders fear controversy over Moore could lead to a drop in donations.

Moore, 48, who has been president of the ERLC since 2013, has been an outspoken critic of Donald Trump since the president began campaigning for the White House. In 2016, Moore called Trump “an arrogant huckster” and wrote an essay for the National Review citing “Trump’s vitriolic — and often racist and sexist — language about immigrants, women, the disabled and others.”

[…]

Mike Stone, chair of the Executive Committee, said in a news conference Tuesday (Feb. 18) that committee members have heard anecdotal accounts of churches withholding money or reducing giving because of concerns about the ERLC. He said that local church leaders and state Baptist leaders have expressed concerns in private but not on the record. The task force will give them a place to officially lodge their concerns.

Stone added that the Executive Committee does not know if concerns about the ERLC have indeed caused giving to drop. He also said that there is a lot of “fake news” about the convention and about the ERLC and that the task force will try to find the truth.

In early February, Baptist Press, the official news service of the SBC, reported that giving to the Cooperative Program was up about 3% from last year. Last year Baptists had given $64.5 million by the end of January. This year, giving totaled just under $66.5 million by the same point in the year.

Similar complaints were raised against ERLC in 2017 over Moore’s anti-Trump comments. At that time, Moore met with Frank Page, the former president of the Executive Committee, and the two agreed to work together for the good of the convention.

Stone said the task force is not an attempt to remove Moore from office.

[…]

Given the controversy the organization has generated, Stone was asked if the ERLC had outlived its usefulness and whether funding the commission was still a good use of Cooperative Program funds.

He said he expects the task force will look into that question.

The task force will “review the past and present activities” of the ERLC, said Stone, and “assess whether the actions of the commission and its leadership are affecting Cooperative Program giving or the further advancement of the Cooperative Program.”

[…]

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"[T]he emergency of irregular migration has to be met with justice, solidarity and mercy. Forms of collective expulsion, which do not allow for the suitable treatment of individual cases, are unacceptable."
— Pope Francis, Morocco

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