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All articles in category News

News

December 2018
News > Mission

Mission – Bible camp defies statistics

Twenty-seven young people mostly from one-parent families chose to follow the Lord Jesus at a Bible camp in Peru. Arriving with a back-pack full of expectations and enthusiasm, 66 youths in total between 12 and 16 years old attended the camp in Comas, a deprived area of Lima, the capital of the South American country. The camp organisers Siloam Christian Ministries said a heartening 41 per cent of those who attended are looking to the future with hope after the camp, the theme of which was ‘Our Eternal Father’ and which held special meaning for the underprivileged youths who attended. Most were from one-parent or...

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News

December 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – ‘Locked-in’ syndrome teenager recovers

A teenager is recovering after a bleed on the brain left her with ‘locked-in’ syndrome. Miranda Meldrum suffered a near-fatal stroke in April last year, aged 13, leaving her almost completely paralysed. ‘Locked-in’ syndrome leaves people with fully functioning minds but with little or no ability to communicate. The condition is frequently used by campaigners as a reason to legalise assisted suicide in the UK. Miranda’s mother Stella was asked at one point if she would agree to turn off her daughter’s life-support system. But then the teenager began showing signs of recovery. Miranda initially had to communicate by blinking to answer basic yes or...

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News

December 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Christian and anti-slavery campaigner honoured

Two-hundred and fifty years since his birth, one of the men who fought to end slavery has been honoured with a memorial plaque in St George’s Gardens in London. Zachary Macaulay was born in Inveraray in 1768, but after getting a job in a merchant’s office in Glasgow, he spent much of his youth drinking. Aged 16, he left Scotland for Jamaica, where he would become an overseer at a sugar plantation. There he was confronted by the reality of slavery. The slaves often worked for 16 to 18 hours a day, discipline was brutal, and many slaves lost fingers to machinery. Three years was...

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News

December 2018
News > Ethics

Ethics – Radical abortion motion

Campaigners have expressed relief that a radical abortion motion brought forward by Diana Johnson MP, Labour MP for Hull North, is unlikely to become law. The motion, which MPs passed by 208 to 123 votes in October, sought to impose abortion on Northern Ireland and remove many of the current legal safeguards around abortion provision in England and Wales. As the debate was a ‘10 Minute Rule Motion’, it is unlikely it will be given further time by the government in Parliament, or become law, according to the widely based charity Right to Life (https://righttolife.org.uk). Right to Life added that Ms Johnson’s proposals for England and Wales...

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December 2018
News > International

International – Brunson: ‘Millions prayed for Turkey’

Pastor Andrew Brunson believes that God was sovereignly involved in his two-year incarceration in Turkey because ‘millions of people prayed for Turkey during that time, and God is bringing blessing out of it’. In an interview with American TV programme CBS This Morning after his release, Pastor Brunson revealed that the book of 2 Timothy sustained him during his two months in a Turkish prison. ‘Where Paul talks about suffering and finishing the race well, and this became my prayer: I want to be faithful and endure and finish well’. Pastor Brunson was originally arrested along with his wife. On being arrested they were both...

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News

December 2018
News > International

International – OM update on Sulawesi

Christian missionary organisation Operation Mobilisation (OM) has thanked its supporters for backing its work in Indonesia with prayer following the devastating 7.4 earthquake which struck in the Central Sulawesi region on 28 September. Over 2 million people were affected by the impact of such a large-scale disaster. Homes, hospitals, water and communication lines were destroyed, making thousands homeless, afraid and in need. In the midst of such suffering OM said it continues to call out to Jesus in prayer and ask that comfort and aid would surround the people of Indonesia as they struggle to piece together their lives and communities after such a catastrophic...

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News

December 2018
News > International

International – Rising intolerance among India’s youth

There is increasing intolerance in India amongst Hindu youths towards other religious minorities, one Indian Christian leader has told a meeting in the House of Lords. Speaking at a reception organised by religious freedom group ADF International, Dr Michael Williams blamed India’s ‘fundamentalist’ government. He said it was comparable to Islamic radicalisation or fascism in Germany in the 1930s. He quoted government statistics showing attacks in the communities have risen 30 per cent in over three years, with almost 1,000 incidents recorded in 2017, leading to 111 people being killed and over 2,500 being injured. Dr Williams, who is Dean of Mount Carmel Schools in...

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December 2018
News > Persecution

Persecution – Pakistani Christian pupil expelled

A 13-year-old Pakistani Christian boy was sent out of his classroom for turning off a tap that had been left running. Fourth grader student Sharjeel was expelled from his class on 16 October 2018 because it was believed that by touching the tap he had tainted the water and therefore he should be punished. Head teacher Nusrat Shaheen, of Government Boys Primary School, Dhok Fatah, District Attock, beat and abused him, before chasing him out of the school saying Christians are supposed to clean drains and not be educated. She further asked the child to bring his mother to fall at her feet. When Sharjeel’s...

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December 2018
News > Persecution

Persecution – Asia Bibi ‘freed’

Britain and other nations should offer asylum to Asia Bibi and her family, Christian campaigners said after the Catholic mother-of-five was acquitted of blasphemy charges in Pakistan on 31 October. A three-judge bench of Pakistan’s Supreme Court saved the illiterate farm labourer from execution, with its decision to acquit and release her. In a 56-page ruling the court stated that ‘the prosecution has categorically failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt’. The judges also asserted that ‘it is not for the individuals, or a gathering (mob), to decide as to whether any act falling within the purview of Section 295-C has been committed or not’....

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December 2018
News > Persecution

Persecution – Eastern Ukraine bans church meetings

An evangelical church group in eastern Ukraine has been outlawed by authorities, and Christians face a fine or arrest if they meet together, even in their own homes. Now called the Luhansk People’s Republic and controlled by pro-Russian separatists since 2014, the area’s officials imposed a re-registration process for churches in February 2018. But Ukraine’s Institute for Religious Freedom said evangelical Christian communities have been barred from re-registration, meaning they are breaking the law if they do not cease to operate. Barnabas Fund reports congregations emptying church buildings of books and furniture, and church leaders have asked for prayer ‘that God gives wisdom and strength...

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News

December 2018
News > Persecution

Persecution – Secular aggression shuts churches in Rwanda

Church attendance has declined in Rwanda this year and church leaders live in fear, as the government continues to close churches amid increasing aggressive secularisation by President Paul Kagame. More than 8,000 churches have now been closed in the Christian-majority country, and the number keeps growing, on the pretext of failing to meet requirements laid down at the beginning of the year, according to the pro-government KT Press. World Wide Monitor says new requirements set in place for congregations that want to continue ministry are also complicating efforts to comply. The closures began in the East African country in February. World Watch Monitor reported that...

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News

December 2018
News > Society

Light has dawned

‘The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death, a light has dawned’. This beautiful verse, from chapter 9 of Isaiah’s Old Testament prophecy, is set within a wonderful passage often read at Christmas. It describes the coming of the Messiah. The Gospel of John, chapter 1, verse 9, expands the theme: ‘The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world’. At Caring For Life (www.caringforlife.co.uk) in Leeds, we spend each day seeking to reach people who live in utter darkness, both physical and spiritual. Yet we are...

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