Black storm clouds gathered. Intense non-stop winds began to blow. Sea birds disappeared. A blinding rain rolled over Galveston Island. Locals had seen this before — or so they thought.
Everyone knew that a big hurricane was brewing just off the coast, but no one knew how nasty this fellow would prove to be. This was to be the big one that old timers had predicted was someday coming. On Friday, September 13, 2008, the big one finally hit Galveston. His name was Ike. Hurricane Ike.
The I-45 North causeway linking Galveston Island to the mainland was nearly empty. Well over half of the Galveston population had already fled the island by Friday afternoon, but those who stayed would have Hurricane Ike stories to last a lifetime.
The Synod of the Trinity is sponsoring a one-day workshop on child abuse prevention Sept. 17 at the Penn Stater Conference Center in State College, Pa.
Entitled “Protecting Our Children,” workshop participants will examine the child abuse reporting and protection policies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Topics to be covered include:
Workshop leaders are the Rev. Jay Lewis, stated clerk of Pittsburgh Presbytery and an attorney, and Frank P. Cervone, an attorney who is Executive Director of the Support Center for Child Advocates, a lawyer pro bono program for abused and neglected children in Philadelphia.
International pressure is mounting on Iranian courts to acquit a Christian pastor sentenced to death last year for apostasy. The Supreme Court of Qom overturned the sentence but still ruled if it was proven he was a Muslim upon his conversion and does not repent his conversion, the execution may be carried out.
Yousef Nadarkhani, a 33 year-old minister of the Church of Iran and pastor of a 400-member congregation in the city of Rasht, was sentenced to death last November by a state court for apostasy (abandonment of a religion) and evangelizing Muslims.
Following an appeal, the court, according to an unofficial translation provided by the Washington DC-based American Center for Law and Justice, determined that “if it can be proved that [Yousef] was a practicing Muslim as an adult and has not repented (of his conversion), the execution will be carried out.”
More than half of U.S. voters approve of God’s job performance, according to a new poll, making God more popular than all members of Congress.
The poll ― which was conducted by the Democratic research firm Public Policy Polling (PPP) ― surveyed 928 people and found that 52 percent of Americans approved of God’s overall dealings, while only 9 percent disapproved.
Questions about God were asked as part of a larger survey assessing American opinions of congressional leaders in the midst of the ongoing debt ceiling debate in Washington.
Ten recent seminary graduates have received their first calls to ministry in the second year of For Such a Time as This, an innovative pastoral residency program designed to renew the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) by equipping new pastors to grow small churches Deep and Wide in evangelism, discipleship, servanthood and diversity.
Launched by the General Assembly Mission Council in Fall 2009, For Such a Time as This: A Small Church Residency—Growing Leaders, Growing Churches is a timely and innovative program that pairs small, underserved congregations with recent seminary graduates in a two-year pastoral residency relationship. One of the program’s unique and essential features is that each pastoral resident receives the support and guidance of a network of pastor/mentors, presbytery, and national church leaders.
The Reverend Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, Director of the PC(USA) Office of Public Witness in Washington, D.C., together with nearly a dozen other religious leaders, was arrested this afternoon in the U.S. Capitol Building while engaging in prayer and civil disobedience. Frustrated that their pleas to the Administration and Congress to protect funding for the nation’s most vulnerable people are being ignored, the leaders refused to end their public prayers for an equitable resolution to the debt ceiling debate, despite repeated warnings from the U.S. Capitol Police.
As the August 2nd deadline approaches, negotiations to raise the federal debt ceiling seem to have reached a stalemate. The PC(USA) Office of Public Witness, along with interfaith partners in ministry, is indignant that, in order to break that stalemate, spending cuts to programs that serve the most vulnerable in the U.S. and around the world will likely be included with an increase in the nation’s credit limit. The PC(USA) has expressed grave concern about the nation’s mounting debt and deficits. The PC(USA) General Assembly shares elected officials’ concern at leaving to the next generation a legacy of debt, but neither does the PC(USA) support leaving behind a legacy of poverty, neglect, and underinvestment.
Ann Sukraw-Lutz wants the nation’s 37 million people living below the poverty line to be lifted into the middle class and seated at their rightful place, the banquet table Christ has set.
She’s inviting participants at Synod of Lakes and Prairies Synod School to join the “each one reach one” effort.
Sukraw-Lutz, a member of the First Presbyterian Church at Grand Island, Neb., offered up her own experience working for churches and Nebraska Legal Services as well as principles from the book Bridges Out of Poverty during a workshop Tuesday (July 26).
Derek Maul has packed a lot of living into his 55 years: world traveler, teacher of emotionally disturbed children, author, speaker, father of two.
But hands-down, his favorite role is preacher’s husband.
“Because you’re not locked into a stereotype,” he says. “There’s no well-worn path to follow, no box to be put into. That gives me the freedom to follow Jesus. So I look at this as a great opportunity.”
The Japan Ecumenical Disaster Response Office (JEDRO) said it will support anti-nuclear activities and an interdenominational and interfaith response to the aftermath of the March 11 earthquake, tsunami and Fukushima nuclear power plant accident.
The office plans to hold a worship service in remembrance of the disaster on the six-month anniversary, Sept. 11, together with the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan and the Japan Evangelical Alliance.
For millennia, people have been trying to imagine what happens after death. Is there an afterlife, a heaven? Who gets in? And what happens to those who don't?
Books trying to provide answers to these age-old questions continue to be best-sellers, and some, like “Love Wins” by Michigan megachurch pastor Rob Bell have ignited intense debate, especially among evangelical Christians.