In Today's Edition:
- Sniper Victims' Families and Police to Benefit from Christian Coalition Push
- EEOC Orders National Education Assn. to Stop Discrimination Against Christian Teachers
- Attacks Against Priests Continue in Colombia
- Lawsuit Claims Maine Dept. of Education Discriminating Against Religious Schools
Sniper Victims' Families and Police to Benefit from Christian Coalition Push
Allie Martin – Agape Press
The nation’s largest Christian grassroots organization is spearheading an effort to support the families of victims of recent sniper attacks and the law enforcers involved in the probe. The Christian Coalition of America is urging supporters to financially support the Montgomery County Police Department as well as families of victims of the sniper attacks. Mike Brown of the Christian Coalition says the effort is one way for Christians to show the love of Christ. "This, of course, will be monies that will be going to help the victims' families and to help them as they're going through this great tragedy and this great loss -- especially some of the [families of] victims who were bread-winners," Brown explains. "I'm sure that these families are going to need help." Law enforcement agencies have incurred steep unexpected costs since the sniper attacks began earlier this month. The Montgomery County Police Department reportedly spent more than a quarter of a million dollars in the first week of the investigation. "That was a tremendous amount of 'out go,'" Brown says.
EEOC Orders National Education Assn. to Stop Discrimination Against Christian Teachers
(Charisma News Service) In response to religious discrimination charges brought by an Ohio Christian teacher, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has ordered the National Education Association (NEA) -- the nation's largest teacher union -- to stop its annual questioning of religious teachers who want to have their dues paid elsewhere because of objections to the union's liberal stance on issues. "For years the NEA union has used this particular illegal scheme to intimidate and harass teachers of faith who dare to challenge their radical agenda," said Stefan Gleason, vice president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. "The EEOC's finding of a violation further underscores that the nation's largest teacher union has systematically persecuted people of faith."
Attacks Against Priests Continue in Colombia
(Voice of the Martyrs) In unrelated attacks within hours of each other, two Catholic priests were recently murdered in Colombia. In the early morning, as Father José Luis Cárdenas Hernández was about to leave his home to jog, he answered a knock on the door and found five armed men in civilian clothes. They spoke for ten minutes before shooting Cárdenas five times in the head. Cárdenas was the parish priest for Chalán, 400 miles northwest of Bogotá. Authorities believe that his murder was the work of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). A FARC spokesman has denied this allegation. Later that same afternoon, Monsignor Gabriel Arias Posada, vicar of the Diocese of Armenia, was reportedly traveling to help secure the release of a kidnapped official when he and his driver were shot and killed in the town of Anserma. Reports of priests being killed have become common in Colombia in the ongoing strife between the government and rebel groups. According to Zenit, armed groups in Colombia have killed 47 priests and two bishops. Over the past decade, the internal conflict has claimed 40,000 lives.
Lawsuit Claims Maine Dept. of Education Discriminating Against Religious Schools
The American Center for Law and Justice filed a lawsuit in Portland, Maine against the Maine Department of Education and a local school district claiming a state law that provides tuition payments for secondary education is unconstitutional because it prohibits parents from using the tuition payments at religious schools. “The Supreme Court of the United States has made it clear that religious schools must be treated in the same manner as other schools with respect to tuition funding,” said Vincent McCarthy, Senior Counsel of the ACLJ. “The law in Maine discriminates against religious schools by denying parents the opportunity to use state funds provided to taxpayers for tuition at religious schools. We’re confident the court will ensure that parents who choose a religious school for their children will receive the same financial benefits afforded to parents who choose non-religious schools for education.” In June 2002, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that state tuition vouchers could be used at private, religious and non-religious schools. The Supreme Court ruling also made it clear that school vouchers could not be used to discriminate against religious schools.