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Religion Today Summaries, November 7, 2002

Religion Today Summaries, November 7, 2002

In Today's Edition:

  • GOP Scores Historic Victory – Good News for Pro-Family Issues
  • Israel Prepares for Early Elections Amid Violence
  • Pastor Aims to Reduce City Killings
  • American Bishops Draft New Policy on Sex Abuse by Priests

Godless Americans Rally on Capitol Lawn
Chad Nykamp

(Crosswalk.com) The U.S. Capitol building was the backdrop for this year’s “godless Americans” rally hosted November 2nd by the American Atheist organization.   A small crowd of atheists and secular humanists turned out for a day of speakers, live entertainment, poetry and fist shaking at a God.  At times the crowd swelled to several hundred people as various tour groups cut across the national mall.  Guest speaker Harry Greenberger, President of New Orleans Secular Humanists, delighted attendees with reports of recent successes including a mayoral proclamation in New Orleans declaring January 2002 as Celebrate Separation of Religion and Government Month and a close partnership with the local Planned Parenthood chapter.  While American Atheists Spokesman Ron Barrier praised the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals for declaring the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional, he had harsh words for members of Congress.  “They ran down the steps like petulant forth graders in a fire drill…and did they pledge allegiance to reason, to an ideal...No. The only thing they cared about was their stupid God!"  Complaining about the threatening presence of a handful of protesters silently holding signs with various Bible verses, Barrier went on to say, “The only reason we have police here is because there are Christians.”    He was met with cheers as he boldly closed his speech with the proclamation, “To you Christians with your stupid signs, these knees will never bow, and this tongue will never confess!”

Global Day of Intercession for Persecuted Christians November 10

The International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (IDOP) is a global day of intercession for persecuted Christians worldwide. This year, on November 10, over 100,000 U.S. churches will participate. The primary focus of IDOP is the work of intercessory prayer and citizen action on behalf of persecuted communities of Christian faith. Prayer is encouraged for the souls of the oppressors, the nations that promote persecution and those who ignore it. Learn more about the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church by visiting www.persecutedchurch.org

Two Killed as Jewish Settlers Come Under Fire
Stefan J. Bos - Special Correspondent
(Assist News Service) A Palestinian gunman stormed a Jewish settlement and shot dead two Israeli's early Wednesday, November 6, before being killed himself by a security guard, Israeli army officials said.  The militant Islamic group Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack which came shortly after three Palestinian mortars landed in the same settlement, without causing injuries, Israel radio and other news reports said.   "This is a very hard terror attack," the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem News Service quoted representatives of the settlement as saying.  "It was apparently perpetrated by a Palestinian who used to work here," the settlers said.  These latest incidents came a day after Prime Minister Ariel Sharon reluctantly accepted to hold early elections within 90 days, following the Labor party's decision to leave the cabinet in part to protest the current funding of Jewish settlement projects.  Although the Palestinian Authority has condemned attacks against civilians, it made clear that the only way to stop the violence is "when Israeli's vote for a government that supports peace," in the upcoming elections.

Ugandan Church's Remarkable Growth
Charisma News Service

The pastor of an East African megachurch credits God for the remarkable growth of his congregation, and for saving his nation from dictators.  Jackson Senyonga's Christian Life Church (CLC) in Kampala, Uganda, has grown from seven people to 22,000 since 1995.  God moved on Senyonga's heart 8-1/2 years ago to do His work, he said, telling him that He was tired of his "small mind" toward God's work.  The young church-planter continued in prayer until God instructed him to start a church in Kampala, the capital.  "The Lord told me that if I would obey, He would use my obedience to touch my city, my nation and the nations around me," said Senyonga, 35.  Many of Uganda's politicians are acknowledging God in political affairs as they seek Him for wisdom.  Prayer has been initiated in state-government offices, and some judges pray before they convene for court, Senyonga said.  In a historical move, the nation's president, Yoweri Museveni, issued a proclamation in 2000 declaring that God is the God of Uganda.