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A Boy Among Men
What happens when you throw a teenager into an adult prison? Guess. (The Marshall Project)
Black and White and Red All Over: Why Racial Justice Is a Gospel Issue
How civil rights pioneers convinced conservative Christians, and why civil rights is no longer a "culture war" issue (Russell Moore, Moore to the Point)
Rev. Franklin Graham gets involved in "Justice for Trayvon"
During a meeting Tuesday at the Billy Graham Library, evangelist Franklin Graham agreed to partner with the national NAACP in its efforts to fight for justice for slain Orlando teen Trayvon Martin. (WSOC-TV)
Are We Born With Some Notion of an Eye for an Eye?
Our research shows that by 8 months of age, infants prefer to play with puppets who treat bad individuals badly, even over those who treat bad individuals well. (J. Kiley Hamlin, Science and Religion Today)
Bishops Criticize Tough Alabama Immigration Law
A group of church leaders has formally denounced Alabama's new immigration law, calling it mean-spirited and un-Christian, and has vowed not to obey it. (The New York Times)
Opinion: Hiroshima’s lessons
What the Air Force should remember about Just War and nuclear weapons. -(Tyler Wigg-Stevenson, The Washington Post)
Give us our daily passage: Reading Bible tied to social justice issues
a new study by Baylor University researcher Aaron Franzen found frequent Bible reading predicted greater support for issues ranging from the compatibility of science and religion to more humane treatment of criminals (Ahead of the Trend, ARDA)
A Christian Group Seeks to End Extreme Poverty
Some 138 million Christians live in the United States—and they collectively earn $2.4-trillion per year. If each one of those people just slightly increased the amount he or she gives each year, they could eradicate extreme poverty by 2035 (The Chronicle of Philanthropy)
Brazil convict remains jailed in nun's murder
A rancher convicted of masterminding the murder of a U.S. nun who was also an environmental activist will have to stay in jail while his case is appealed, Brazil's top court ruled (Associated Press)
Wife of murdered German missionary hopeful about case in Turkey
The arrests of more people in connection with the murder of three missionaries in central Turkey in 2007 has created hope for the widow of one of the victims. (Hurriyet Daily News)
  • Idaho's Christy Perry Defends Followers of Christ Religious Exemption | The New Republic
    This kind of religious exemption, and its sequelae, revolt many religious people, too. The calls for reform don’t constitute an attack on religion per se, but an attack on the actions of a particular religion—delusional actions that take the lives of children too young to make their own decisions. How can we not attack them?
    Women Against Abortion: The Intensity Gap
    Can a pro-life platform win elections? (Kelefa Sanneh, The New Yorker)
    Pro-Life Sentiment Hits an All-Time High, According to Rasmussen
    Also: Among respondents who said that the issue of abortion was “very important” in terms of how they would vote in the next congressional election, 58 percent said that they were pro-life, while only 39 percent identified as “pro-choice.” (Michael New, National Review Online)
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  • Gender, violence and religion: When north and south agree | The Economist
    So...was this one more depressing display of the giant cultural gap between the liberal north and the traditional south, especially over sexuality, which is tearing apart the 80m-strong Anglican Communion, and many other religious bodies? No, it was nothing of the kind, and that's what made the discussion more worthwhile.
    Why (some) states use religion to justify violence - The Washington Post
    When states enforce a particular interpretation of religious law, citizens are forced to abide by it rather than their own conscience. And when states retain the ability to hire and train clerical staff, manage the construction of religious buildings and even approve sermons, they hinder the ability of individuals and groups to function as independent social actors. Through policy mechanisms, religion becomes a tool of the state, ready to be wielded to advance its interests. That tool can even be used to justify acts of physical coercion and even violence
    As Christmas approaches, Baghdad Christians lament empty pews - The Washington Post
    “It’s a disaster,” he said. “Violence and discrimination and corruption are kicking us out, then others are pulling us out. The international community is encouraging Christians to leave. This is destroying our community here.”
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  • Jim Crow South’s lynching of blacks and Christianity: The terror inflicted by whites was considered a religious ritual.
    "I should emphasize that blacks of the era understood lynching as rooted in the Christian practice of white southerners. 'It is exceedingly doubtful if lynching could possibly exist under any other religion than Christianity,' wrote NAACP leader Walter White in 1929, 'No person who is familiar with the Bible-beating, acrobatic, fanatical preachers of hell-fire in the South, and who has seen the orgies of emotion created by them, can doubt for a moment that dangerous passions are released which contribute to emotional instability and play a part in lynching.'
    Vandals spray 'KKK' tag on third black church in Fla.
    It is the third predominantly black church in the rural county this week that has been vandalized with racial remarks, sparking an FBI investigation into what appear to be hate crimes. Along with two churches on Sunday, a truck at Wildwood Golf Course was also painted with "KKK."
    Couple detained in Qatar welcomed home at Pasadena church service - LA Times
    A standing ovation erupted inside the Lake Avenue Church in Pasadena during Sunday morning service as Matt and Grace Huang were called before the congregation.
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  • Religion and human rights: Awkward, but necessary, bedfellows | The Economist
    Jack Snyder, a Columbia University professor, puts it in a nutshell: "The international human rights movement has for the most part failed to penetrate the consciousness of societies where the worst abuses occur. It remains a largely elite project of activists and lawyers using global rather than vernacular language." Secular human-rights advocates cannot easily speak to or on behalf people in traditional societies; religious leaders find it much easier.
    American Is Moved to North Korea Hospital
    Kenneth Bae, 45, a tour operator who was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor, has left the camp where he was being held. His health has declined, his sister said.
    Muslim Brotherhood’s Words on Women Stir Liberal Fears
    In a statement Wednesday on a proposed United Nations declaration to condemn violence against women, the Brotherhood issued a list of objections, which formally laid out its views on women for the first time since it came to power. (The New York Times)
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  • Suburban attorney indicted for falsifying asylum requests - Chicago Tribune
    DeKelaita, himself a Christian born in Iraq, has won asylum for hundreds of Iraqi Christians facing potential deportation, according to a 2008 Los Angeles Times story. He's been a prominent local advocate for Christians in Iraq, speaking publicly and writing articles posted online about their persecution.
    Pilgrims: Immigrant religion in Pittsburgh
    Some American churches are actively evangelizing among the newcomers — seeing a historic moment in which the populations of the once-distant mission fields are now in their own backyards. Some immigrants themselves are proselytizing among their own ethnic and language groups and their U.S.-born neighbors. Many faith-based social-service organizations forbid proselytizing in their work with immigrants and refugees, but some congregations do evangelize while also offering practical aid such as food, clothing and English lessons.
    Some Evangelical Churches Are Now Accredited To Provide Legal Services To Immigrants | ThinkProgress
    A coalition of 15 evangelical church-based denominations that represent more than 28,500 churches launched national efforts Tuesday to provide free to low-cost legal services to immigrants who are unable to find or pay for attorneys to handle immigration paperwork on their own.
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  • These Americans return to Iraq as Christian warriors against Islamic State
    While they say they welcome the gesture, Kurdish authorities in northern Iraq are wondering how to vet foreign recruits who are clamoring to sign up. (The Washington Post)
    RNS: Here’s the faith in the ‘American Sniper’ you won’t see in the film
    “My shots saved several Americans, whose lives were clearly worth more than that woman’s twisted soul,” he wrote. “I can stand before God with a clear conscience about doing my job. But I truly, deeply hated the evil that woman possessed. I hate it to this day.”
    As Christmas approaches, Baghdad Christians lament empty pews - The Washington Post
    “It’s a disaster,” he said. “Violence and discrimination and corruption are kicking us out, then others are pulling us out. The international community is encouraging Christians to leave. This is destroying our community here.”
    More
Top Story March 29, 2015
The Dance of Suffering and Love
The Dance of Suffering and Love
What to do with our grief for the world.
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