Religion Today Summaries - March 30, 2012

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - March 30, 2012

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

In today's edition:

  • As U.S. Resumes Aid to Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood Tightens Grip
  • Jeremy Lin Shares Faith With Ex-ESPN Employee Who Wrote Racial Slur
  • Imprisoned Chinese Human Rights Lawyer Gao Zhisheng Confirmed Alive
  • Report: Most Adoptions Today 'Open'


As U.S. Resumes Aid to Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood Tightens Grip

Two days after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton approved resuming military funding to Egypt -- expressing optimism in its "significant progress toward democracy" -- Islamists asserted control over yet another part of the country's transition to a new government, reports. On Sunday, it was announced that the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party and the Salafist Nour party would comprise roughly 70 of the 100 seats on Egypt's new constituent assembly, which will be responsible for crafting the country's new constitution. With Islamists leading the constitution-drafting process, sharia (Islamic law) is expected to be a major factor, and the Muslim Brotherhood appears increasingly likely to play a primary role in determining the nature of post-Mubarak Egypt as the country prepares for presidential elections in two months.

Jeremy Lin Shares Faith With Ex-ESPN Employee Who Wrote Racial Slur

Jeremy Lin -- the New York Knicks point guard who shot to recent fame for record-breaking success -- recently shared his Christian faith over lunch with an ESPN employee who was fired for writing a racial slur in a headline about the Asian-American athlete, the Christian Post reports. During the height of the phenomenon sparked by Lin's success in February, 28-year-old Anthony Federico posted the headline "Chink in the Armor" on ESPN's website -- an action for which he was ultimately fired. A little over a month later, Lin's family invited Federico to lunch. "The fact that he reached out to me, the fact that he took the time to meet with me in his insanely busy schedule ... he's just a wonderful, humble person," Federico said. "He didn't have to do that." But Lin didn't just share lunch with Federico -- he also shared his faith. "We talked more about matters of faith [and] reconciliation," Federico said. "We didn't talk about the headline for more than three minutes." In another recent instance, Lin used the love of Jesus to combat a heckler on Twitter; he wrote in response to a racist comment, "Jesus loves you bro and I do too."

Imprisoned Chinese Human Rights Lawyer Gao Zhisheng Confirmed Alive

For the first time in almost two years, family members of prominent Chinese Christian lawyer Gao Zhisheng have confirmed he is alive and in good health, putting to rest fears that he had died in prison, China Aid reportsGao's older brother and father-in-law, who were permitted a 30-minute meeting with Gao at the Shaya prison in Xinjiang, were able to see him through a glass window and converse with him using a prison phone. Gao, referred to widely as the "conscience of China," disappeared into police custody in 2009, less than a year after being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his advocacy work defending workers, political activists and religious groups. His family last saw him in 2010, when he gave an interview to the Associated Press describing the brutal torture inflicted on him by Chinese police.

Report: Most Adoptions Today 'Open'

A new survey of adoption agencies shows 95 percent of all domestic adoptions are now "open" or "semi-open" -- the birth parents and adoptive parents having at least some level of contact, Baptist Press reports. It is a reversal from the secrecy that was once common; according to the report, a number of factors forced adoptions into the open, such as adoptive children searching for information about their past, birth parents wanting updates on their child, adoptive families requesting biological medical history and the stigma of illegitimacy decreasing. Kris Faasse, adoption services director for Bethany Christian Services, says open and semi-open adoptions can be beneficial for all parties involved. Youth in open adoptions have a "better understanding of the meaning of adoption," the report said.

Publication date: March 30, 2012