Religion Today Summaries - Apr. 12, 2007

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - Apr. 12, 2007

Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.
 
In today's edition:

  • 50,000 Homeless after Solomon Islands Tsunami
  • Barna Research Shows Parenting Approach Determines whether Children become Devoted Christians
  • Latest Clergy Sex Abuse Report Finds Drop in Reported Victims
  • A Bronze Age Vessel of Purification Reveals the Signature of 'Moses'

50,000 Homeless after Solomon Islands Tsunami

Baptist Press reports that more than 50,000 people were left homeless in the Solomon Islands when a massive earthquake triggered a tsunami in the South Pacific April 2. Among the 28 who died were a bishop and three worshippers when the wave hit a church where an ordination service was being held. A New Zealand man drowned when he tried to save his mother. On April 3, international aid began reaching survivors of the tsunami, which was as high as 16 feet at the town of Gizo, according to the Associated Press. At least 13 villages were destroyed, and government officials warned a humanitarian crisis threatens thousands of people who fled inland without food and basic necessities. The death toll was expected to rise as communications is restored and reports are received from isolated villages.

Barna Research Shows Parenting Approach Determines whether Children become Devoted Christians

Christian Researcher George Barna's new book, released this week, is entitled Revolutionary Parenting. The book contains the results of a long-term research study designed to figure out what perspectives and practices are most likely to produce spiritual champions. The study, surveyed young adults about their spiritual foundations and the role their parents played during their childhood, revealed that there are six critical dimensions for parents to master as they raise their youngsters. Primary among the findings was that that those who received more guidance from parents actively-engaged in applying God’s words on life and family formed deeper standards of faith in their lives. Barna notes that “revolutionary parenting” (as opposed to “default” and “trial-and-error” parenting), the approach based on one’s faith in God by making parenting a life priority, produced the most desired outcomes for Christian children exemplifying Christian morals and attitudes.

Latest Clergy Sex Abuse Report Finds Drop in Reported Victims

The number of people who said they are victims of clergy child sex abuse has dropped 34 percent since 2004, according to a national survey of dioceses and religious orders, Catholic News Service reports. The annual report showed the same drop since 2004 in the number of credible allegations made and a 40 percent drop in the number of reported offenders. Lawyers' fees continued to skyrocket in 2006 but the amount of money paid out in settlements dropped by nearly $122 million from 2005, the report found. "what we are doing in creating safe environments is working," said Texas Bishop Gregory M. Aymond. But "the fact that there are any recent cases at all is very disconcerting. We need to be consistent and do more."

A Bronze Age Vessel of Purification Reveals the Signature of 'Moses'

According to Christian Newswire, researchers have identified a Bronze Age artifact including an artistic montage with distinctive Paleo-Hebrew writing. Vessels of purification were part of the ancient sacrificial system. The signature of the vessel's artist is elaborately signed, yet clearly spelled out, 'MoSHeH.'  The artwork shows the stories of the patriarchs, and the panoramic scenes include a 360° view of Mount Sinai and Horeb peaks. The illustrations upon the stone vessel include constellations that depict Holy Scriptural principles. The ancient stone vessel's encoded message is a song with a healing message within a loving declaration to the Creator spelled 'HaShem.' Encoded within the Artscroll are layers of Jacob's prophecies for each son as told in Genesis. The dream of the sheaves bowing towards Joseph is illustrated with 'Yoseph' spelled out upright while the brothers' sheaves are bent letters.

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