Section : Church Growth

  • Candelmas

    Feast Feb. 2: Presentation of Child Jesus on #Candlemas

    Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple, or Purification of the Blessed Virgin, is being observed today (Feb. 2) by Christians around the world. While it is customary for Christians in some countries to remove their Christmas decorations on Twelfth Night (Epiphany Eve), those in other Christian countries historically remove them on Candlemas. On Candlemas, many Christians (especially Anglicans, Methodists, Lutherans, Orthodox and Roman Catholics) also take their candles to their local church, where they are blessed and then used for the rest of the year.
  • Christian Master's Student Refuses to Counsel Gays, Sues and Wins $25K from Missouri University

    Missouri State University officials just agreed to pay $25,000 to a former student who sued the school after he was removed from a master's degree counseling program, because he said he wouldn't counsel gay couples. Andrew Cash sued the university last April, claiming in the lawsuit he was "targeted and punished for expressing his Christian worldview." However, his personal religious stance presented professional issues, given the national counselors' code of ethics.
  • 115th Congress

    Faith-Based Politics: How Many US Politicians Truly Believe in Christianity and in What Form?

    Pew Research Center on Religion and Public Life staffers released a new study that indicates one of two vastly different realities: either "a profound theological dissonance" exists between American people and those they elect as their representatives in Congress, or "a great number of those representatives lie to people who take surveys," proposes Charles P. Pierce, lead political blogger for Esquire.
  • Church Barn

    Christian Church Services in Barn Resume in California After Religious Ban

    Northern California county officials recently reversed their decision to ban a Christian congregation from meeting in a barn. Located just outside of Oroville, Calif. in Butte County, a group of Christians had been holding meetings in a barn, but county officials informed the owners of the barn and property they could no longer use the space to host church services. The same officials later even banned church gatherings in an open pasture on the property.
  • Christian deaths

    Christians Most Persecuted Religious Group In World, Studies Indicate

    Christians are among the most persecuted religious groups in the world, with approximately 90,000 killed for their faith in 2016, stated representatives of a leading religious study group. Center for Studies on New Religions (CESNUR) director Massimo Introvigne told Vatican Radio that half a billion Christians around the globe are unable to express their faith completely freely, while estimates indicate one Christian died every 6 minutes for their faith during 2016.
  • China Catholics

    China Urges Vatican to be 'Flexible, Pragmatic' on Improving Religious Ties

    While Pope Francis tries to heal a decades-old religious rift with China within which Chinese Catholics are divided between loyalty to him and those who are members of a government-controlled official church, China's head of religious affairs on Tuesday said Beijing is willing to have constructive dialogue with the Vatican but stressed Catholics should "hold up high the flag of patriotism" and adapt Catholicism to Chinese society.
  • Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly

    ‘Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly’ PBS Show to End After 20-Year Series

    The award-winning weekly public television series (PBS), "Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly," is slated to end after 20 years of broadcasting, announced representatives of WNET, the parent company of Thirteen Productions. The show's last episode will be Feb. 24, 2017. The group's website will remain available, providing an extensive archive, including transcripts of individual shows and streaming videos. Des Moines Register staffers called this show "a blueprint for how to accurately report on religion."
  • Pope Francis

    Pope Francis Pleads President Assad to Stop Bombing in Aleppo

    Pope Francis appealed again to stop the endless loss of innocent lives in Aleppo through a letter sent to President Bashar al-Assad. The message from the Pope was given by new cardinal Archbishop Mario Zenari, apostolic nuncio to Syria, to the president of Syria which contained the Pope's desire for the civilians to be protected and the civil war to be stopped.
  • Rembrandt The Stoning of Saint Stephen

    Christian Unity Displayed Through Vatican's First-Ever Rembrandt Exhibit

    Paintings of artistic genius Rembrandt, who traditionally was more associated with Protestant Europe, now are on display at the Vatican Museums -- a first for the popular spot that attracts millions of visitors annually. Titled "Rembrandt in the Vatican: Images Between Heaven and Earth," the show includes 53 artworks from the Zorn Museum in Sweden and the Kremer Collection in the Netherlands. Some of the Dutch artist's best-known works are biblical scenes, such as "The Raising of the Cross" and "Adam and Eve."
  • Bill Johnson

    Bethel Church Pastor Bill Johnson: Homosexuality is 'Violation of God's Design'

    Less than a week after "Fixer Upper" stars Chip and Joanna Gaines came under fire for attending an evangelical church opposed to same-sex marriage, Bill Johnson, Senior Pastor of Bethel Church, explained why, according to the Word of God, homosexuality is a blatant "violation of design" that ultimately disturbs the purpose that God created for His people.
  • Air Force Academy Falcons Football

    Air Force Academy Coach Tweets to Evangelize God, Draws 'Church and State' Criticism

    Air Force Academy Falcon's football tight end coach Steed Lobotzke's tweets involve promoting Christianity. Because the tweets were sent on a Twitter account that identifies Lobotzke as being with the academy's football program, Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation is strenuously objecting to the coach's lack of separation of church and state, and wants accountability to be established.
  • In God We Trust

    'In God We Trust' Motto on U.S. Currency Targeted for Removal

    U.S. District Court officials for the Northern District of Ohio on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit against the federal government that demanded the removal of the national motto, "In God We Trust," from U.S. currency. The plaintiffs, which are a "group of atheists, humanists, and religious persons who find the use of God's name on currency to be sinful," claim this national motto on currency breaches their rights to free exercise, free speech and equal protection. Attorneys from the largest U.S. legal organization dedicated to defending religious freedom for all Americans stepped into the case as well.
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