Religion

Indonesian LGBTs Face Exorcisms Under Proposed Law

The Bangkok Post reports: Forced exorcism is a common story for gay and transgender people in the world’s biggest Muslim majority nation, where a conservative shift has seen the community increasingly targeted in recent years. Homosexuality is legal everywhere in Indonesia except conservative Aceh province which adheres to strict Islamic laws. But it is still widely believed that being gay …

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Germany Becomes Latest Nation To Ban Ex-Gay Torture

Pink News reports: On Thursday evening, May 7, the Bundestag passed a law which completely bans any so-called “therapy” that aims to change the sexual orientation of minors, and the crime will carry a prison sentence of up to one year. According to Badische, conservative German health minister Jens Spahn [photo] stressed: “Homosexuality is not a disease. Therefore the term …

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Ex-Pope Links Gay Marriage To “Power Of Antichrist”

The New York Daily News reports: The 93-year-old ex-pope has an authorized biography out in Germany this week, which ends with an interview between Benedict and the journalist Peter Seewald. In the exchange, Benedict sharply attacked gay marriage, abortion and scientific methods of conception. “Modern society is in the middle of formulating an anti-Christian creed,” he said. “The fear of …

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23rd US Diocese Declares Bankruptcy Amid Lawsuits

From the Archdiocese of New Orleans: In order to continue effectively ministering to the needs of the church community and victims and survivors of clergy abuse, the Administrative Offices of the Archdiocese of New Orleans announced today that it has filed for Chapter 11 reorganization under the U.S. Federal Bankruptcy Code. The move was necessitated by the growing financial strain …

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Pope Francis Urges “Obedience” To Lockdown Rules

The Christian Post reports: Two days after bishops in Italy’s Roman Catholic Church complained that government officials did not include the resumption of in-person masses as part of a reopening plan for the country starting May 4, Pope Francis on Tuesday urged “prudence and obedience” to prevent the coronavirus from surging in the country again. Speaking to the faithful during …

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Turkish President Agrees: Homosexuality Brings Disease

NBC News reports: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday threw his weight behind Turkey’s top Muslim cleric, who caused a storm by claiming homosexuality “brings disease and causes this generation to decay.” In his first sermon during the holy month of Ramadan on Friday, Ali Erbas also maintained that hundreds of thousands of people every year are exposed to HIV …

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New Russian Cathedral To Feature Putin, Stalin Mosaics

The Moscow Times reports: The walls of Russia’s new Orthodox cathedral dedicated to the Armed Forces will be decorated with the faces of President Vladimir Putin, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Soviet leader Josef Stalin, the MBKh News website reported Friday. The 95-meter Armed Forces cathedral, a symbol of close defense-church ties in Russia, is expected to open on May …

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Bill Barr To Pastors: I Won’t Let States “Single You Out”

The National Review reports: During a White House conference call with more than 500 faith leaders on Thursday, Attorney General William Barr assured the participating priests, rabbis, and ministers that the administration is on guard against overzealous state governments intent on “singling out” religious groups with punitive coronavirus lockdown measures. Barr, who spoke for roughly ten minutes, told the religious …

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Islamic High Council: Pray At Home During Ramadan

NBC News reports: Saudi Arabia’s highest religious body, the Council of Senior Scholars, urged Muslims worldwide to pray at home during Ramadan if their countries require social distancing, to curb the spread of the coronavirus, state news agency SPA reported on Sunday. “Muslims shall avoid gatherings, because they are the main cause of the spread of infection and shall remember …

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Virginia: Defiant Branch Covidian Pastor Dies Of COVID

The New York Post reports: In his last known in-person service on March 22, Bishop Gerald O. Glenn got his congregation at Richmond’s New Deliverance Evangelistic Church to stand to prove how many were there despite warnings against gatherings of more than 10 people. “I firmly believe that God is larger than this dreaded virus. You can quote me on …

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Pope Francis Endorses Universal Basic Income

The Jesuit magazine America reports: In a remarkable Easter Sunday letter to members of social movements around the world, Pope Francis, noting that the widespread suffering caused by the global coronavirus pandemic does not fall evenly, suggested that the crisis warranted the establishment of a universal basic income. He described it also as an opportunity for affluent societies to “downshift” …

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Archbishop Sprinkles Holy Water Over New Orleans

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reports: Seventy-year-old New Orleans Archbishop Gregory Aymond climbed into the open-air cockpit of a World War II-era biplane on Good Friday morning and roared off on a 25-minute mission. As a pilot steered a course from the Lakefront Airport to Kenner to Gretna, to the French Quarter and back, Aymond blessed the population, which has been …

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Seminaries Launch “Dial-A-Priest” For COVID Last Rites

The Christian Post reports: Seminaries have launched a hotline in which clergy can give prayers and last rites to people in the hospital over the phone, namely for coronavirus patients for whom access might be limited because of social distancing. Virginia Theological Seminary and General Theological Seminary launched “Dial-A-Priest”  this week through their joint project, the TryTank Experimental Lab. The …

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Pope: COVID Is “Nature’s Response” To Climate Change

CNN reports: Pope Francis has said the coronavirus pandemic is one of “nature’s responses” to humans ignoring the current ecological crisis. In an email interview published Wednesday in The Tablet and Commonwealth magazines, the pontiff said the outbreak offered an opportunity to slow down the rate of production and consumption and to learn to understand and contemplate the natural world. …

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56% Of Pastors: Jesus Will Be Back In My Lifetime

The Christian Post reports: On Tuesday, the Southern Baptist polling research firm released results from a phone survey, conducted between Jan. 24 and Feb. 11, of 1,000 senior pastors or ministers who were randomly called from a list of evangelical churches. “While Christians prepare to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, many pastors believe they see signs His return may be close,” LifeWay …

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Landlord Changes Locks After Church Defies Lockdown

Oakland’s Fox affiliate reports: Members of a central California church found themselves locked out of the bulding after the pastor originally kept his doors open, saying the shelter-in-place orders violated his freedom to assemble. But within the past week, the landlord of the Cross Culture Christian Center in Lodi, Calif. changed the locks, so congregants couldn’t enter the building for …

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AUSTRALIA: High Court Overturns Ev-Vatican Cardinal’s Molestation Conviction, Free After Year In Jail [VIDEO]

Reuters reports: Australia’s highest court acquitted former Vatican treasurer George Pell on Tuesday of sexually assaulting two teenaged choirboys in the 1990s, freeing the 78-year-old cardinal after 404 days in jail. The High Court ordered Pell’s convictions be quashed and verdicts of acquittal be entered in their place, ending the most high profile case of alleged historical sex abuse to …

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TX Woman Dies Of COVID After Posting Facebook Rant: “You Don’t Need Sanitizer, You Need Faith And Guns”

From a GoFundMe plea posted on Friday: With deep sadness and Broken Hearts we share with you that Karen Kolb Sehlke, a loving wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend to all that knew her, went to be with our Lord when she passed away unexpectedly Thursday April 2,2020. Karen became very sick and was admitted to the hospital near her …

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Pope Marks Start Of Holy Week In Empty Basilica

Reuters reports: Pope Francis marked a surreal Palm Sunday in an empty St. Peter’s Basilica, urging people living through the coronavirus pandemic not to be so concerned with what they lack but how they can ease the suffering of others.n The service, kicking off Holy Week events leading to Easter, usually attracts tens of thousands of people to a St. …

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Pope Pleads For God’s Help As Italian Deaths Soar

Reuters reports: The gloom over Italy darkened Friday as the country reported nearly 1,000 new deaths, its worst single-day toll in an accelerating coronavirus pandemic that has brought the world to a standstill. Grim-faced Italian officials in Rome announced 969 new deaths at a daily briefing while, not far away and at the same time, Pope Francis held a stirring …

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