Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.
In today's edition:
- Young Adults 'Less Religious,' Not Necessarily 'More Secular'
- British Church Leaders Encourage Carbon Fast for Lent
- ChinaAid Calls for the Truth about Gao Zhisheng
- Police: Victims Aid Police in Calif. Church Attack
Young Adults 'Less Religious,' Not Necessarily 'More Secular'
USA Today reports that today's young adults are less "churchy" than their parents and grandparents, but not necessarily less spiritual. The age 18 to 29 demographic, called "Millennials" in the study, is significantly less likely to identify with a particular faith, but pray as much as preceding generations did at the same age. Meanwhile, church attendance as steadily declined over the past two generations. "They may be less religious, but they're not necessarily more secular" than the Generation Xers or Baby Boomers who preceded them, says Alan Cooperman of Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, which collected the 2008 data. A solid 40 percent of Millennials said religion is very important in their lives, compared to 39 percent of Boomers at the same ages. Forty-one percent said they pray daily, compared to 42 percent of Gen Xers as young adults.
British Church Leaders Encourage Carbon Fast for Lent
Christian Today reports that the Bishop of London is encouraging Christians to give up something more significant than chocolate or Facebook this Lenten season. He's encouraging them to give up carbon instead. The Rt. Rev. Richard Chartres, along with the head of anti-poverty movement Micah Challenge International, Joel Edwards, encouraged Londoners to look at their carbon footprint. "It's the poorest people in developing countries, who have done the least to cause climate change, being hit hardest by its devastating consequences. It is all of our responsibility to help reverse this injustice," he said. "Climate change is everybody's problem and everybody's solution. For millions of the poorest people in the world climate change is not a matter of debate, it's a matter of livelihood, life and death."
ChinaAid Calls for the Truth about Gao Zhisheng
Christian Newswire reports that the wife of a missing Chinese human rights activist has dismissed reports of her husband's working at a Chinese company as "nonsense." Gao Zhisheng has been missing since February 2009, and his wife and two children fled China last year due to official harassment. "I am in America now," said Gao's wife, Geng He. "I have no contact with Gao." President of ChinaAid Bob Fu sees a more sinister angle to the false reports: "With no evidence to suggest otherwise, this appears to be a ploy by the Chinese government to confuse people and cover up the truth. By telling reporters and advocacy organizations that Gao is in Xinjiang, it will keep them from hunting around Beijing for answers. The Chinese government is just playing games now."
Police: Victims Aid Police in Calif. Church Attack
The Associated Press reports that members of New Gethsemane Church of God in Christ in Northern California are now working with police to catch shooters who wounded two in their congregation. Two brothers, aged 14 and 19, were targeted by three men while at the Richmond, Calif., church on Sunday. "If those guys were bold enough to shoot up a church, who's to say they won't come up to your front door and shoot you?" said Frank Robinson, a Richmond native said on Monday, describing why some congregants were reluctant to aid police. Richmond police Sgt. Bisa French said Tuesday they now have leads on two of the men involved in the shooting. "We're hoping to make some arrests soon," French said.