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All articles in category News

July 2018
News > Society

Royal wedding sermon was lively but empty

The energetic sermon preached at the royal wedding of Harry and Meghan drew praise from many in the secular elite, but strong criticism from others. Bishop Michael Curry spoke on the subject of ‘love’. The style of the American was very lively, more so than one would normally expect at a stiff British royal occasion. Many evangelicals saw through the outward display of passion and noted the lack of any real gospel substance to the message. Alarmingly though, some evangelicals thought it was wonderful. Rev. Curry hails from Chicago and has actively campaigned on a number of liberal issues. He has defended the Episcopalian church’s...

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July 2018
News > International

LETTER FROM AMERICA: The US military chaplaincy

As Christians live hemmed in on every side by the world and its cultural agendas, we know we are in a battle. Paul stated that we do not fight against flesh and blood, but ‘against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places’ (Ephesians 6:12). There are, however, those in the military who face both cosmic spiritual powers and ‘flesh and blood’ enemies. By God’s providence, chaplains have served the American military since the onset of the Revolutionary War and are currently serving our armed forces, counselling and pastoring them...

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July 2018
News > Politics

Politics – Teachers’ freedom threatened

The freedom of teachers to disagree with same-sex marriage is under threat in schools, with draft government guidance threatening to shut down debate and block pupils from hearing an alternative view. A consultation on the guidance closed on 5th June 2018. The draft guidance says that a school will not meet requirements if its PSHE curriculum ‘suggests that same-sex marriages or civil partnerships should not be recognised as being lawful unions under civil law’.  The Christian Institute warns that this wording will inevitably restrict disagreement with same-sex marriage in schools. Teachers will not want to put their school at risk of being failed. Ofsted has...

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July 2018
News > Politics

Politics – Sharia review implementation

Baroness Caroline Cox has challenged the government to respond urgently to the findings of the independent review of the application of sharia law in England and Wales, published in February 2018, according to Christian Concern. The review stated that ‘no one disputed that sharia councils engage in practices which are discriminatory to women’.  Baroness Cox questioned the government’s response in the House of Lords, saying: ‘One Muslim lady told me, ‘I feel betrayed by Britain. I came here to get away from this, and it’s worse here than in the country from which I came’. Therefore, I ask the minister whether Her Majesty’s Government will...

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July 2018
News > Persecution

Persecution: Myanmar – Kachin Christians escape

Two thousand Kachin Christians, who were trapped in the jungle in northern Myanmar following attacks by the Myanmar (Burmese) army in April, have now reached safety, travelling on foot and by elephant. Barnabas Fund reports that although they are now free and safe, many are still in desperate need and thousands have taken shelter in churches. There is also the threat of further attacks by the military. Contacts say: ‘Please continue to pray for the Kachin. The Burmese army have sent more troops to other Kachin areas, and we are expecting a new flood of attacks and refugees soon when the rainy season starts.’ The...

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July 2018
News > International

International: Mali – Harvest failure

Christians and others in Mali are in desperate need of food, due to a lack of rain in the crop-growing areas of landlocked Mali last season and subsequent harvest failure in a country where subsistence farming dominates the economy. According to Barnabas Fund, crop failure in this vast and landlocked country on the edge of the Sahara Desert meant the usual price drop for cereals in November-December did not happen, and by February families were abandoning their fields to try to save their lives. As they migrated to the cities, the price of cereals spiralled dramatically. Churches are being beseeched but they too have no...

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July 2018
News > International

International: Eritrea – Crime against humanity

Jack Phillips, an American Christian baker who politely declined to create a wedding cake for a same-sex marriage, has won his case at the US Supreme Court. In a 7-2 ruling the judges decided Phillips had faced ‘clear and impermissible hostility’ for his religious beliefs from the state of Colorado. However, the court stopped short of making its ruling more widely applicable. Religious liberty organisation Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which has been supporting Phillips, welcomed the decision, saying the court had protected his ‘ability to live and work consistent with his beliefs’. Rulings in other similar cases involving a photographer and a florist must await...

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July 2018
News > International

International: USA – Victory for US baker

Jack Phillips, an American Christian baker who politely declined to create a wedding cake for a same-sex marriage, has won his case at the US Supreme Court. In a 7-2 ruling the judges decided Phillips had faced ‘clear and impermissible hostility’ for his religious beliefs from the state of Colorado. However, the court stopped short of making its ruling more widely applicable. Religious liberty organisation Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which has been supporting Phillips, welcomed the decision, saying the court had protected his ‘ability to live and work consistent with his beliefs’. Rulings in other similar cases involving a photographer and a florist must await...

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July 2018
News > People > Obituaries

Obituary: Dr Theodore C. Danson

Dr Theodore C. Danson Smith of Edinburgh went to be with Christ on May 8th 2018, having been in hospital for some months. Theodore trusted the Saviour at five years of age, and went on to have a lifetime of Christian service until his health declined. He was manager of B. McCall Barbour Christian Books, Edinburgh for the whole of his working life. This took him to all four corners of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland for colporteurage. During his yearly travels, he also preached in local churches. Theo — as he was known — authored five Christian books, all of which were widely...

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July 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Local perspective on Guernsey’s rejection of assisted dying

One church pastor on the channel island of Guernsey tells us about the recent decision to reject proposals to introduce assisted dying. If the proposals had gone ahead, pressure for similar measures in the UK would have seriously increased. For twelve weeks during February to May this year, the usually quiet, safe island of Guernsey felt like it was on the edge of a precipice. Legislators were bidding to make Guernsey the first place in the British Isles to introduce assisted dying (or more aptly, assisted suicide). Thankfully, with all the credit going to God, the decisive vote was eventually defeated by a sizeable majority....

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Trinitarian Bible Society – Bibles needed and provided
July 2018
News > Church news

Trinitarian Bible Society – Bibles needed and provided

Dr David Allen of the Trinitarian Bible Society visited the Presbyterian Reformed Church, Stockton-on-Tees on Tuesday 22 May. Folk attended from six local churches including the host church. Dr Allen preached from Romans 1:16-17 where Paul affirms that he is ‘not ashamed’ of the gospel of Christ. We were reminded that Peter was three times ashamed to confess Christ and that we need to be on our guard. The text provides six reasons for not being ashamed. They are as follows: (i) the gospel is ‘the gospel of Christ’, God’s only begotten Son; (ii) the gospel as the power of God is ‘dynamic’ according to...

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July 2018
News > Conferences

Conference – Grace Baptist Assembly 2018

There are plenty of practical steps that pastors and churches can take to help people suffering mental health issues, Professor Alan Thomas told the Grace Baptist Assembly. Meeting at the Hayes Conference Centre, Swanwick, Derbyshire, the Assembly heard Professor Thomas deliver two outstanding sessions. The first session, entitled ‘Mad, Bad or Sad?’, took a general look at mental health issues and the ways pastors and churches can help sufferers. The second session looked more specifically at the issue of depression, and again made helpful suggestions about pastoral support for those experiencing this painful illness. There was also a question session, which was extremely helpful. All...

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