Religion Today Summaries - Nov. 22, 2006

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - Nov. 22, 2006

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

  • Iran Wants to Kill Us, Scholar Says
  • Christianity Should be Communal, not Individualistic, Author Says
  • Liberal Professor Targeted Me From Day One, Says Christian Student
  • Chaldean Priest Missing, Feared Kidnapped in Baghdad

Iran Wants to Kill Us, Scholar Says

Negotiations styled to placate European sensibilities will not bring an end to Iran''s nuclear drive, because the regime in Tehran is determined to kill Americans, a scholar said Thursday. Iran has been at war with the United States for the past 27 years, Michael Ledeen of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) said during a panel discussion at a GOPAC meeting in Washington, D.C. According to, rather than responding in a forceful manner, Ledeen said, U.S. policymakers had fallen back on "talks" that have proven to be ineffective throughout succeeding administrations. "Future historians will marvel at what has transpired between the U.S. and Iran," Ledeen said. "The U.S. has done nothing except talk." He compared negotiating with Iran to a scene in the 1964 James Bond movie, Goldfinger. "Bond is lying on a block of gold, and this laser beam comes up toward his reproductive organs, and Bond at a certain point looks up and says to the bad guy, "do you expect me to talk?'' And the bad guy says, "No Mr. Bond, I expect you to die.'' This is the problem with negotiating with Iranians. They don't want to talk to us. They want to kill us."

Christianity Should be Communal, not Individualistic, Author Says

In his new book, There is No I in Church: Moving Beyond Individual Spirituality to Experience God's Power in the Church, author and Indiana Wesleyan University professor Keith Drury posits that modern Christianity's preoccupation with personal religion produces a shallow spirituality. AgapePress reports the author says believers need to stop focusing on individualism and return to the roots of the early Church. Instead of pursuing an individualistic faith, Christians in America must embrace corporate worship, prayer, Bible study, and other shared activities. Although he acknowledges that Christians are personally saved and must come to Christ individually, Drury asserts that "we probably have gone too far and need a kind of correction."

Liberal Professor Targeted Me From Day One, Says Christian Student

A Christian social work student who took Missouri State University to court after a liberal professor targeted her for refusing to lobby for homosexual adoption said Thursday she and the teacher had clashed over her beliefs from day one. reports that Emily Brooker was vindicated when the university agreed to an out-of-court settlement, and the professor was disciplined. In her suit, Brooker, who has since graduated, accused the university of violating her First Amendment right to free speech by exercising her Christian convictions. Brooker brought the case after the professor, Dr. Frank G. Kauffman, filed a "level three" grievance against her - the most serious in the school's disciplinary system - after they clashed over an advocacy assignment. She told CNS that the class was required to write a letter to their senator advocating for homosexual adoption and foster care. Brooker said she opposes homosexual adoption because of her beliefs as a Methodist. Brooker said she and  one other student objected. "We were willing to do all of the research and the other parts of the assignment, even writing a letter - we just didn't want to sign it and send it to our senator. We did not feel that advocating for this is in our personal beliefs," she said. The other student was not held in violation or involved in the lawsuit.

Chaldean Priest Missing, Feared Kidnapped in Baghdad

Christians in Baghdad fear yet another priest has been kidnapped. Fr. Doglas Yousef Al Bazy - 34 years, Chaldean -- left his parish yesterday morning and has not yet returned home, according to AsiaNews. The story released by AsiaNews says that the alarm was raised swiftly throughout Iraq and the Diaspora via the Internet and SMS: the young priest's community and leaders of Iraq's Chaldean Church believe it is "highly likely" that he has been kidnapped. If their misgivings are proved right, this would be the latest in a long list of kidnappings targeting Christian clerics. Not only gangs of common criminals are suspected to be behind the spate of kidnappings. The Chaldean Auxiliary Bishop of Baghdad, Mgr. Shleman Warduni, told AsiaNews: "Patriarch Delly and I have activated our contacts, hoping they would give us hope but so far we have had no replies. That he was kidnapped is a very likely hypothesis, but there is no confirmation as yet."