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Religion Today Summaries - Nov. 14, 2007

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - Nov. 14, 2007

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

  • Research Reveals Critical Needs of Christian College Freshmen
  • Egypt Jails More Christian Activists from Rights Group
  • Church People in India Explore New Approaches To Work Among Tribal People
  • Women Outnumbered Men in '06 Anglican Ordinations

Research Reveals Critical Needs of Christian College Freshmen

The Christian Post reports that youth leaders who haven't yet called their graduates-turned-college freshmen might want to pick up the phone. Ministry directors who are researching the Christian youth fallout from the Fuller's Center for Youth and Family Ministry have noticed that for the most part, faith didn't prevail between the freshman and sophomore years for college students. A college freshman's biggest priority is to establish friendships and figure out where they fit in, according to CYFM directors Kara Powell and Brad Griffin and Fuller Theological Seminary faculty member Cheryl Crawford. "Across the board, the freshmen we interviewed indicated that these first two weeks are absolutely critical for creating a social life. The primary – and most accepted – way to do this in college is to engage in the party scene," Many respondents said they wish they had maintained contact with friends or youth group leaders post-graduation.

Egypt Jails More Christian Activists from Rights Group

Just days after two Christian activists from a human rights group were released from jail, Egyptian authorities took three of their colleagues into police custody over the weekend. An Egyptian prosecutor has issued 15-day detentions to two of three Christian activists with Middle East Christian Association (MECA) who were jailed on Saturday November 10, Compass Direct News reports. Officials detained the members of Canada-based MECA after the organization’s Egypt president finished a 90-day detention last week. Released November 5 without charges, Adel Fawzy Faltas and MECA member Peter Ezzat had alternately been accused of insulting Islam, destroying Egypt’s reputation, owning a gun without a license and posing a threat to national security during the three-month interrogation. “It’s the same thing again,” said Nader Fawzy, MECA international president, after speaking with lawyers who met the newly jailed activists over the past two days. “They are accusing us of defaming Islam and destroying the reputation of Egypt.”

Church People in India Explore New Approaches To Work Among Tribal People

ASSIST News Service reports that a sharing event on evangelization among tribal people in India recently drew about 70 bishops, clergy, as well as religious and lay people. Cardinal Telesphore Toppo of Ranchi noted at the Nov. 6-8 seminar that education has helped more tribal people to become assertive. Until recently, these people were voiceless and timid, said the first tribal Asian to become a cardinal. Cardinal Toppo, president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India, said Church people should give “hope to the world, which is burdened with so many problems.” This is all the more important in the case of tribal people, added the cardinal, who wants the Church to provide them opportunities to express their views and assert their identity. This could be done in the form of leadership training, liturgical adaptation and promotion of tribal cultural practices, he suggested.

Women Outnumbered Men in '06 Anglican Ordinations

According to an Associated Press report, "women outnumbered men among newly ordained priests in the Church of England for the first time last year. The church added 213 women priests in 2006 and 210 men, according to a report released Monday. However, men continued to outnumber in paid positions—128 to 95 among the new priests—and the total number of men in the priesthood was 7,001 compared with 1,495 women. The total number of women ordained last year was just short of the record of 216 in 2002, the church said. The Church of England began ordaining women as priests in 1994, and is now debating whether women could serve as bishops."