Saturday, November 21, 2009

Alcohol Ban Dropped

Michigan's Cornerstone University is lifting it's 68 year ban on alcohol use by faculty and staff. They have had to sign an alcohol abstinence statement each year. The school's president says the practice will be stopped because an internal study concluded the view is not defensible Biblically since there is no prohibition against moderate alcohol use. The Baptist Bible Institute of Grand Rapids started Cornerstone in 1941. It dropped a ban on student dancing five years ago.

Computer Fraud Scheme

The California Attorney General's office is going after several companies that used to a computer scam to defraud churches. The companies leased equipment to less than tech-savvy churches for enormous amounts of money. The company may have operated in 10 other states, offering what sounded like free computers and kiosks that could serve as message boards. If the churches didn't cough up as much as $45,000, they companies hit them with late fees and filed lawsuits against them. Among those under investigation: Urban Interfaith Network and Television Broadcasting Online, Balboa Capital, United Leasing Associates of America, Banc of America Leasing and Capital LLC. BoA says it was unaware of what was going on.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Shocking Sign Outside Church

"The Church Should Go To Hell." That's the message that's turning heads outside of the Downtown Orlando Baptist Church. WOFL-TV reports the marquee is not a prank.

TBN Host: DUI & Fatal Crash

Orange County, California authorities say TBN contributor and Trinity Music City Church pastor in Nashville, Steve Galiher, was driving drunk and going 85 miles per hour in his company-owned BMW when he hit another car in April. The 70-year-old driver who was hit recently never recovered from his injuries and died recently. Galiher told police he only had two glasses of red wine but was charged on suspicion of drunken driving resulting in an injury. Manslaughter charges may follow.

Giving Away Darwin

What former teen idol Kirk Cameron is doing to debunk evolution. CNN reports.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Cyber Attack

A New Jersey teenager has been given a year in prison for orchestrating a cyber attack on Church of Scientology Web sites almost two years ago. 19-year-old Dmitriy Guzner pleaded guilty to computer hacking charges. He has denied being part of an underground group that protests the Church of Scientology as prosecutors claim.

Grad Ceremonies at Megachurch

The ACLU is threating to sue a Connecticut school board for holding graduation ceremonies at a local megachurch. The Enfield Public School system has used the First Cathedral in Bloomfield as a graduation site for several years because of its size.

Handwritten Bible

A unique copy of the Bible is for sale on eBay. It was written by hand, one verse at a time, by more than 31,000 people across the country. The 2200 page Bible is leather bound and comes in three volumes. Christian book publisher Zondervan is the seller. The money will go to The International Bible Society. The nonprofit group translates and distributes Bibles. A published version will be sold in stores next month. You can bid on the Bible here.

Scientology Accused of Criminal Conduct

A member of the Austrailian Parliament attacked The Church of Scientology last night during a session of the legislative body. Senator Nick Xenophon raised allegations of widespread criminal conduct within the church, saying he had received letters from former followers detailing claims of abuse, false imprisonment and forced abortion. The Independent Senator called for a Senate inquiry into the religion and its tax-exempt status. The church says it has tried to meet with Xenophon and he has refused.

Transgender Law

Christian groups are mobilizing to pack tomorrow's city council meeting in Tampa, Florida when a final vote will be taken on whether to extend the city's anti-discrimination laws to include transgender individuals. A preliminary vote on the change passed unanimously at a November 5th meeting. If approved, the proposal would extend existing laws prohibiting discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations to include "gender identity or expression."

The Florida Family Association says the law would allow cross dressing males to patronize women's restrooms. And the Community Issues Council says it would allow "sexual predators" to go into public restrooms of the opposite sex and force local business owners and landlords to accept cross-dressers. The city's attorney contends the changes are not meant to protect the occasional cross dresser, but individuals who are undergoing sexual reassignment surgery.

Next Fireproof

A followup to the movie Fireproof will explore the topic of fatherhood. Fireproof starred Kirk Cameron as a firefighter. The 2008 independent movie was produced by Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georiga which plans to start filming Courageous this spring. It should hit theaters a year later, telling the story of four fathers in law enforcement who go through a tragedy together. Fireproof made more than $33 million on a budget of about half-a-million.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

County Sued over Bibles, Cross, Prayers

Some Tennessee students are suing the Cheatham County School District for alledgedly promoting Christianity in violation of the US Constitution. Specifically, the suit points to the distribution of Gideon's Bibles in class, a teacher with a cross hanging on a classroom wall and prayers during school events.

Going Rouge

Sarah Palin's new book Going Rouge doesn't acknowledge her co-writter on the cover. Evangelical Christian writer and pro-life activist Lynn Vincent is not mentioned until she's thanked several other people. Collaborators sometimes trade such credits for higher fees, but their names usually appear prominently in the acknowledgments. Vicenct's previous books include a biography of General William Boykin and a history of the Democratic Party. The Los Angeles Times suggests parts of the book are Vincent's and not Palin, such as a reference to Blaise Pascal's philosophy in Palin's conversion from Catholicism to Evangelical Protestantism.

Suit Over Abortion Protest

A New Jersey teen is suing Bridgeton High School for refusing to let her join a anti-abortion protest. The girl is only identified as CH in court papers. The suit claims she asked the school's principal for permission to join in the Pro Life Day of Silent Solidarity on October 20th. The protest is organized annually by Stand True, a ministry based in Troy, Ohio. But the principal told her she could not "do anything religious" on the campus. The teen wanted to wear an armband with the word "life" on it and to hand out anti-abortion pamphlets. CH says she was later punished for sharing her views.

Monday, November 16, 2009

A "Recipe for Disaster"

An Iowa pastor's remarks are stirring controversy about the shootings at Fort Hood. Bob Deever, pastor of West Des Moines' Grace West Church says letting Muslims serve in the military is a "recipe for disaster. " During Steve Deace's radio show. Deever said that since alleged gunman Major Nadal Hasaan was a Muslim he did not have the proper foundation to serve in the US Armed Forces. Deace added that "Islam is a violent ideology."