Religion Today Summaries - October 21, 2011

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - October 21, 2011

Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.

In today's edition:

  • Christian Leaders Urge Prayer for Better Libya After Gadhafi
  • Pro-Family Coalition Questions Double Standard on Hate Crimes
  • Arizona Law Leads to Fewer Abortions
  • Study: Reality TV Negatively Impacts Young Girls


Christian Leaders Urge Prayer for Better Libya After Gadhafi

Following the killing of former Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi by revolutionaries on Thursday, Christian leaders have spoken of the need for healing and reconciliation in the country, according to Christian Today. Dr. Geoff Tunnicliffe, secretary general of the World Evangelical Alliance, said the day would be remembered with "sadness" by those close to Gadhafi while others would be thinking about those who "deeply suffered under his oppressive regime." Tunnicliffe said: "It is our prayer that the hostilities will now come to an end and that the Libyan people will begin a process of reconciliation and building a new society that will be founded upon human rights, including religious freedom, for all." Gordon Showell-Rogers, associate secretary general of the WEA, urged Christians to pray for Libya and added, "Our prayer is that this new chapter will be better for all Libya's people."

Pro-Family Coalition Questions Double Standard on Hate Crimes

A coalition of ministers and pro-family advocates is questioning the double standard on "hate crimes" in the wake of an attack last weekend against a Christian school, the Christian Newswire reports. On Saturday, assailants threw bricks through the glass doors of Christian Liberty Academy in Illinois, along with notes threatening more violence if the school continued to host events featuring conservative groups like Americans For Truth About Homosexuality. Peter LaBarbera, president of AFTAH, said: "As conservatives, we oppose the concept of 'hate crimes,' but since hate crime laws are on the books they must be enforced even-handedly. It is scandalous that a left-wing website post taking credit for this act of domestic terrorism -- and threatening more violence -- is still up and running." He said that "if the situation were reversed and right-wing extremists threw two large bricks through the glass doors of a gay church," no one would dismiss it as merely "vandalism." Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel added, "We will not ... be terrorized into silence."

Arizona Law Leads to Fewer Abortions

A newly enacted Arizona law appears to be having an immediate and dramatic effect on the number of abortions performed statewide, WORLD News Service reports. The Abortion Consent Act, which was passed by the legislature in 2009, then took effect this August after the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled it constitutional in a 3-0 decision, mandates that minors seeking abortions must provide a notarized parental signature, that women must be provided with full, accurate information by a doctor before the procedure, that only doctors can perform abortions and that no doctor can be forced to perform an abortion if it violates his or her religious or moral beliefs. Arizona reported that 729 abortions were performed statewide in September, a 30-percent drop from August. 

Study: Reality TV Negatively Impacts Young Girls

A study by the Girl Scout Research Institute shows that regular viewing of reality TV by pre-teen and teen girls promotes "bad behavior" and insecurity, the Christian Newswire reports. In a survey of girls ages 11-17, 47 percent identified themselves as regular viewers of reality TV, 30 percent said they watched sometimes and 23 percent said they never watched. Of the regular viewers, 70 percent said they spent a lot of time on their appearance, 38 percent said a girl's value was based on how she looked (versus 28 percent of non-viewers), 30 percent said they would rather be recognized for outer beauty rather than inner beauty (versus 18 percent of non-viewers) and 40 percent believed "you have to lie to get ahead" (versus 24 percent of non-viewers).

Publication date: October 21, 2011