November 7, 2017
Presented by The Gospel Coalition
SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas — About half of the victims killed in the worst mass shooting inside a house of worship in U.S. history were children, including one who was only a year old, Texas officials said Monday.
Twenty-six people were shot dead during the Sunday massacre at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, a small, tight-knit town about 30 miles outside of San Antonio. Of them, 12 to 14 were kids, according to Wilson County Sheriff Joe Tackitt.
Full Story: nbcnews.com
August 14, 2017
(updated August 14, 2017)
Yes, This is Racism
Christian Pastor John Pavlovitz has been in the ministry for 20 years. Yesterday he posted a very sincere, eloquent response to the violence that occurred in Charlottesville Virginia, during a racists alt-right rally by white supremacists. Below are his words:
As a writer and pastor, my job is to weave together words so that those words will hopefully reach people in their deepest places; to frame the experience of this life in a way that is somehow compelling or creative or interesting, causing them to engage with the world differently than before.
But there are times when to do this would be actually be a disservice to reality, when any clever wordplay would only soften the jagged, sickening truth; when clever turns of phrase might succeed in obscuring the horrid ugliness in front of us.
Sometimes we just need to say it without adornment or finessing.
What we’ve watched unfolding in Charlottesville, with hundreds of white people bearing torches and chanting about the value of white lives and shouting slurs, is not a “far Right” protest. When you move that far right, past humanity, past decency, past goodness—you’re something else.
You’re not a supremacist, you’re not a nationalist, and you’re not alt-Right.
This is racism.
This is domestic terrorism.
This is religious extremism.
This is bigotry.
It is blind hatred of the most vile kind.
It doesn’t represent America.
It doesn’t represent Jesus.
It doesn’t speak for the majority of white Americans.
It’s a cancerous, terrible, putrid sickness that represents the absolute worst of who we are.
Read the full article at Pastor Pavlovitz’s website: http://johnpavlovitz.com/
March 27, 2016
(updated July 27, 2019)
Christopher J. Hale (Time.com)
Easter is a call to rise up and proclaim a community that will outlive all kingdoms
“Jesus Christ is risen from the dead.” These wondrous words have become so stale that we’ve perhaps forgotten how weird and how wonderful they truly are.
The disciples’ first reactions to this news were remarkable. You can feel their excitement jump off the pages of the New Testament. After an encounter with the resurrected Jesus, Peter goes back to downtown Jerusalem and, filled with a new spirit, gives the first great Christian sermon. He tells the crowds the startling news that Jesus had been raised from the dead and is the Lord of the entire earth.
Peter’s central claim—and the claim of the entire Christian faith—that “Jesus is Lord” might seem commonplace today, but it was very scandalous in ancient Rome.
“Jesus is Lord” was a direct affront to the popular Roman slogan “Caesar is Lord.” By refusing to submit to Caesar Augustus as Lord and claiming a new king and a new kingdom, Jesus and his followers were committing nothing short of treason.
Read the full article at: TIME.com
March 27, 2016
Walk past any store’s Easter display and you’re guaranteed to see bunnies, eggs, and candy. What you probably won’t see is much evidence of the Easter story itself, as told in the Bible’s four Gospels: that Jesus was arrested, beaten, and hung on a cross to die only to be resurrected on Easter Sunday.
But Easter is by most accounts the single most significant Christian holiday, since, as the Apostle Paul says, without Jesus’s death and resurrection, the entire Christian faith is “in vain.”
So how did Easter go from the day Jesus rose again to the day giant bunnies leave pastel-colored eggs all over your house?
Read the full article at: Vox.com
January 28, 2016
Satellite images confirm that the oldest Christian monastery in Iraq has been destroyed by the jihadist group Islamic State (IS).
St Elijah’s stood on a hill near the northern city of Mosul for 1,400 years.
Video courtesy of Associated Press. Full Story: BBC News
November 14, 2015
(updated November 14, 2015)
Paris attacks: Buildings lit in solidarity with France – BBC News
Condemnation of Friday’s attacks on Paris and expressions of condolence have echoed around the world.
Several of the world’s most famous buildings – including the World Trade Center in New York – were lit up with the colours of the French flag in a gesture of solidarity.
Video courtesy of YouTube/BBC News
June 29, 2015
(updated June 29, 2015)
A video documenting relief efforts in the Philippines by World Vision and Hillsong, following the devastation caused by Super Typhoon Haiyan.
(Video courtesy of Hillsong Church, Vimeo.)
June 23, 2015
(updated June 23, 2015)
Mo Asumang, daughter of a black Ghanaian father and a white German mother, talks to BBC News about her experiences making her new documentary, The Aryans, in which she confronts racists, both in Germany and among the Ku Klux Klan in America.
Video courtesy of BBC.com