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Today's Top Five

1. Graham siblings at odds over how best to honor their father and mother
"Billy and Ruth Bell Graham have spent decades carefully cultivating a media image that rarely allows any inkling of family discord," says the Grahams' hometown paper, The Asheville Citizen-Times. Laura Sessions Stepp's front-page Washington Post article Wednesday has dramatically changed that, but the signs suggest that it was the children (though clearly not Franklin Graham) who decided to make the latest battle—over where to bury Billy and Ruth—public. The Charlotte Observer notes that after the Post's publication, the feud escalated as the evangelist's two most famous offspring, Anne Graham Lotz and Franklin Graham, issued opposing "barbed statements."

2. Left Behind game criticized
"Don't mock Left Behind: Eternal Forces because it's a Christian game," says a review at Gamespot. "Mock it because it's a very bad game." Well, mockery or not, the video game is facing widespread criticism this week, mainly for the game's violent aspects. You're not encouraged to shoot your Antichrist-loving opponents, but you do have to train an anti-government paramilitary force and sometimes have to kill in self-defense (you lose "spirit points" by doing so, but can build them back up by pressing the "pray" button). We'll be watching Left Behind Games to see whether they apply the game's "don't shoot first, but do shoot back" approach to their publicity. A reviewer at Focus on the Family liked the game, but commentary at Prison Fellowship / BreakPoint has been as harsh as any.

3. Jay Bakker goes on TV
It's the Sundance Channel, not TBN, and it's a documentary, not a ministry. Bakker says he has no interest in televangelism.

4. The real Christmas ...

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December 2006

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