Christianity

Food Giveaway in Tennessee

July 22, 2000

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On July 22, 2000, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch published an article entitled, "Food Giveaway for the Poor is Set for Sunday Near Trans World Dome." The food giveaway is the "first event of the 68th General Assembly of the Church of God, a Pentecostal denomination based in Cleveland, Tenn...The denomination, founded near the Tennessee-South Carolina border in 1896, has 1 million members nationally, most in the Southeast. About 4 million members live in 159 other countries. Its first general assembly was in 1906 in Cherokee...

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Episcopal Diocese Still Rejects Women Priests

July 22, 2000

Source: The Houston Chronicle

On July 22, 2000, The Houston Chronicle published the article entitled "Fort Worth Episcopal Diocese Remains Firm: No Women Priests." Despite the fact that the national Episcopal church accepted women into the priesthood 26 years ago, the Fort Worth diocese refuses to accept the national mandate. "We will stay and fight for the right to believe what we believe," said the Rev. Canon Charles Hough, a close associate of Fort Worth Episcopal Bishop Jack Iker. "They are asking us to do something we can't do. It's a matter of...

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Palos Heights, Chicago: Controversy over Sale of Church to Muslims

July 20, 2000

Source: The Associated Press

On July 20, 2000, the Associated Press released an article about how the plan to convert a church into a mosque has divided the mostly Christian Chicago suburb of Palos Heights. Yet even with all the "political sniping and accusations of bigotry, residents seemed a little stunned when a federal mediator stood up at a recent city council meeting with an offer to step in." The council did not immediately accept the offer, but the mayor seemed open to the idea. Some in the small town wish the spotlight had never hit their quiet...

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Palos Heights, Chicago: Controversy over Sale of Church to Muslims

July 19, 2000

Source: National Public Radio

On July 19, 2000, National Public Radio aired a story entitled "Chicago Suburb Wrestles with Racist Overtones of City Council." The mayor of Palos Heights vetoed the $200,000 offer by the city council, calling it "an insult to Muslims and fiscally irresponsible for the city." Yet the Al Salam Mosque Foundation unexpectedly accepted the city's buyout. Speaking at a press conference, the foundation's attorney, Rouhy Shalabi, said "deciding to accept the money and walk away was a tough decision, but his clients did not want to be in a...

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Women Gather to Renew Their Christianity--In Their Own Ways

July 10, 2000

Source: The Financial Times Limited

On July 10, 2000, London's Financial Times Limited published an article about a new American phenomenon: religious revitalism that is increasingly, being led by Baby Boomer women. While events run by the all-male Christian group the Promise Keepers are experiencing their lowest attendance in years, the Women of Faith concert tour is filling up arenas and stadiums throughout the country. A recent event in Atlanta, with five video screens and pulsating lights, was "more rock concert than church sermon, underlining its...

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Special Prayer for Inmates Worldwide

July 10, 2000

Source: Los Angeles Times

On July 10, 2000, the Los Angeles Times published an article about Pope John Paul II's July 9th mass as part of "Jubilee in the Prisons of the World." The day was intended to draw attention to the world's prisoners and to call for a "worldwide reduction of jail sentences as a sign of goodwill during the millennial Holy Year." Spiritual messages of healing and forgiveness were delivered by Roman Catholic bishops across the continents as they celebrated Sunday Mass for the incarcerated. The central theme throughout the services...

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Colorado to Put "God" Back in Schools

July 7, 2000

Source: The Denver Post

On July 7, 2000, the Denver Post published an article about the recent Colorado State Board of Education decision to encourage schools to display the national motto "In God We Trust," angering many who see the vote as an effort to bring religion into the classroom. The resolution, passed 5-1 by the Board of Education, is non binding, yet it "immediately drew threats of lawsuits from at least one group that says it will sue if any schools actually post the motto." Supporters say that the motto is a part of America's national...

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A House of Prayer in Largo, Florida

June 17, 2000

Source: St. Petersburg Times

On June 17, 2000, the St. Petersburg Times reported that a House of Prayer will open on Monday, June 19 in Largo, Florida. The House of Prayer is linked to the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Mo., where 300 people take turns leading a non-stop musical prayer ministry. Dale Denham, pastor of Harvest Temple Church in Largo, which owns and operates the House of Prayer, stated: "Anybody who wants to can come in and pray, yet there is always only an audience of one and that is God." Fifty American cities and 25...

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Southern Baptist Leaders Vote for Controversial Changes at Annual Convention

June 15, 2000

Source: The Washington Post

On June 15, 2000, The Washington Post reported that Southern Baptist leaders for the 15.8-million member denomination overwhelmingly voted to ban female pastors and change the Baptist Faith and Message Statement at their annual convention, held this year in Orlando, Florida. Although the ban on women pastors has caused the larger controversy outside of the denomination, the change to the Message Statement was the larger controversy within the denomination. In the 150-year history of the Baptist denomination, the Message had only...

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Southern Baptist Leaders Vote for Controversial Changes at Annual Convention

June 15, 2000

Source: Chicago Sun-Times

On June 15, 2000, the Chicago Sun-Times published an article on the reaction of Rev. Elaine Graham, a pastor in a Southern Baptist church in Calumet City, Illinois, to the SBC ban on female pastors. Graham is one of about two dozen Baptist female pastors in the Chicago metropolitan area, which claims 50,000 Southern Baptists. Though she has no intention of mentioning the SBC vote in her Sunday sermon, Graham emphasized the benefit of having female pastors: "Women are sometimes more open to talking with another woman." Graham, who...

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Southern Baptist Leaders Vote for Controversial Changes at Annual Convention

June 15, 2000

Source: The Boston Globe

On June 15, 2000, The Boston Globe published an article on the SBC ban on women pastors. James Merritt, the Georgia pastor who is the newly elected president for the group, defended the ban on women pastors: "The issue is not competence; the issue is God's word. The calling by God to the pastorate is for the male only. I think a lot of these people who say they've been called are mistaken." The convention's stand against female pastors leading congregations was written into the revised Baptist Faith and Message statement. It does...

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Southern Baptist Leaders Vote for Controversial Changes at Annual Convention

June 14, 2000

Source: The Houston Chronicle

On June 14, 2000, The Houston Chronicle reported that Southern Baptist moderates will challenge revisions to the denomination's mission statement. Charles Wade, executive director of the Texas Baptist convention, stated: "If this document is adopted, even though it is not binding on individual Baptists or churches, it will be used by SBC-appointed trustees to test the doctrinal positions of seminary professors and missionaries." Moderates have largely ignored the national convention and have developed alternative groups such...

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Diocese of Orange Ordains their First Latino Bishop

June 1, 2000

Source: Los Angeles Times

The June 1, 2000, Los Angeles Times reported that Jaime Soto has became the youngest bishop in the U.S. He is a well respected community member who easily blends Spanish and English in his masses. "Soto's promotion signals the growing emphasis by the Catholic church on the burgeoning Latino population here and across the United States. Of Orange County's 1 million Catholics, about 480,000 are Latino, according to diocesan officials." "Nationwide, there is one priest for every 1,230 Catholics...but only one Latino priest for...

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