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April 21, 2014
World Harvest Mission Gains New Name: Serge
Growing Organization Points to God’s “Grace at the Fray”
Penn. — World Harvest Mission is changing its name to Serge. The name
was made public on April 21, 2014. The discipleship and
missionary-sending ministry hopes to more clearly represent its work
with the new name. Serge is a metaphor referring to a sewn seam that
joins two pieces of frayed cloth together. The organization’s new motto
is “Grace at the Fray.”
“We needed a name that represented all of
what we do,” said Bob Osborne, Executive Director. “The name World
Harvest Mission defined us solely as a mission sending agency. We are an
overseas sending agency, but our work also goes beyond that. We provide
resources like Sonship and disciple believers in churches throughout
the United States. So we chose a metaphor to point to God’s grace
healing a broken world. That grace always motivates us to mission.”
was founded in 1983 by pastor, author, and Westminster Seminary
professor Jack Miller. Miller was known for his commitment to personal
renewal and mission, motivated by the grace of God in Christ. READ MORE...
April 21, 2014
Yale Institute of Sacred Music Fellows 2014-2015
Six new fellows to join interdisciplinary community
Haven, Conn. – The Yale Institute of Sacred Music (ISM) is pleased to
announce that six new fellows will be joining its interdisciplinary
community for the 2014-2015 year.
The Institute is an
interdisciplinary graduate center educating leaders who foster, explore,
and study engagement with the sacred through music, worship, and the
arts in Christian communities, diverse religious traditions, and public
life. With a core focus on Christian sacred music, the ISM builds
bridges among disciplines and vocations and makes creative space for
scholarship, performance, and practice.
The ISM Fellows in Sacred
Music, Worship, and the Arts are established scholars, religious
leaders, or artists whose work is in or is turning toward the fields of
sacred music, liturgical/ritual studies, or religion and the arts. The
Fellows have numerous opportunities to share their work with the
community and to teach, as well as to work on their individual projects
using Yale’s vast resources. Following in the footsteps of previous
cohorts of ISM fellows, the 2014-2015 fellows represent a cross-section
of cultures and disciplines. READ MORE...
April 21, 2014
Claremont School of Theology Ends Relationship with Claremont Lincoln University
CLAREMONT, Calif. – The Board of Trustees of Claremont School of
Theology today announced the seminary has ended its relationship with
Claremont Lincoln University.
“Our joint venture began in May
2011 with a shared vision to offer interreligious graduate education,”
Board Chair The Rev. Dr. David Richardson said. “The two schools have
mutually agreed that our fundamental philosophies have diverged,”
leading to the decision to end the relationship.
leading to the separation began earlier this year when Claremont Lincoln
decided to move away from its interreligious roots and become a
secular-focused university seeking its own accreditation.
School of Theology’s trustees ask all who care for the seminary to hold
both schools in prayer as they move forward on separate paths.
decision ends academic, administrative, and fiduciary connections
between the schools. Some actions will take place in phases, and
negotiations are underway to reach a financial settlement between the
university and the seminary. READ MORE...
April 18, 2014
Simon Wiesenthal Center: Newly Sainted Popes are Heroes to the Jewish People
The Simon Wiesenthal Center joins with Catholics around the world in acknowledging the remarkable contribution of the two Popes canonized this Easter Sunday.
“Jews will always remember Pope John XXIII as the animating force behind the Vatican II Council that changed the way Catholics looked at other faiths, especially Judaism. The Nostra Aetate document that ensued from it pulled the plug on centuries of theological anti-Semitism and put relationships between Christians and Jews on a new footing of mutual respect”, observed Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein, the Wiesenthal Center’s Director of Interfaith Affairs. READ MORE...
April 14, 2014
Easter and State Academic Standards
Public schools are expected to teach about Jesus
Lake Forest, Calif.—While two billion Christians around the world prepare to celebrate Easter, millions of public school children in America won’t be learning about the religious aspects of this holiday.
A new report released this week documents that state academic standards not only allow, but in some cases, expect public schools to teach about Jesus, the Bible, and Christianity. Gateways to Better Education has published its online report The Bible in State Academic Standards. The 230-page report highlights state-by-state, academic standards indicating ample opportunity for educators to teach about the Bible, Christian beliefs, and Christians who were influential in history.”
“There is a common misconception among many educators that teaching about the Bible and Christianity is not allowed in public school classrooms because of concerns over the establishment of religion,” says Eric Buehrer, president of Gateways to Better Education. “The fact is public school students are expected to learn these things.” READ MORE...
April 14, 2014
The Benedictines of Mary continue to touch hearts with Lent at Ephesus going into Holy Week
Seven week reign as Billboard’s #1Classical Traditional Album
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ATLANTA—As Holy Week approaches during the height of the Lenten season, the Benedictines of Mary continue to emotionally connect with music lovers across the country with their latest recording, LENT AT EPHESUS. The reflective and stirring album has spent seven consecutive weeks at No.1 on Billboard’s Classical Traditional Album Chart.
Both of the Sisters’ previous recordings debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Classical Traditional Chart; however, LENT AT EPHESUS’ first week numbers surpassed their own prior sales successes, outselling artists on both the Traditional and Crossover Charts, including more commercial, “crossover” classical musicians such as Lindsey Stirling, The Piano Guys and Il Divo, among others. READ MORE...
April 11, 2014
A Voice in the Church and the World
Presidential Addresses from the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR)
Maryknoll, N.Y.—American Catholics discovered the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) in April of 2012, when the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) announced that, after a 4-year assessment, the organization—whose members represent 80% of the Catholic sisters in the United States—and its pastoral and doctrinal situation presented “a matter of serious concern.” Archbishop Peter Sartain of Seattle was named Delegate for the Initiative of reforming the LCWR, along with Bishop Leonard Blair of Toledo, Ohio, and Bishop Thomas John Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois.
The international storm that followed included a 60 Minutes segment as well as tens of thousands of communications to and about LCWR, from Catholics and non-Catholics alike. Many American Catholics expressed support, finding it difficult to square the CDF’s conclusions with their experience of the sisters as teachers, healers, and role models. Indeed the hunger for the type of leadership the LCWR demonstrates was one of the reasons behind the decision to publishing Spiritual Leadership for Challenging Times. READ MORE...
April 8, 2014
Priest. Messenger of the Truth. Died for Religious Freedom. Future Saint. Do you know him?
Award-winning documentary reveals the modern true story of heroic Polish martyr
Father Jerzy Popieluszko was the courageous chaplain of the Solidarity
movement in Poland in the early 1980’s, and it was his strong faith,
conviction and courage that mobilized a nation to stand against the
communist regime there. The remarkable story of Father Jerzy, a 21st
century hero of human rights who was murdered is 1984 by the Polish
government, is told in the award-winning documentary Messenger of the
Truth, which became available on DVD and public television on April 1.
by Catholic activist and actor Martin Sheen, Messenger of the Truth
chronicles Father Jerzy’s opposition to Poland’s oppressive Communist
leaders, who harassed, arrested, threatened, imprisoned and, eventually,
murdered him for speaking the truth in a country full of propaganda,
oppression and social injustice.
“A must-see documentary for all
who believe in the rights of religious liberty, the dignity of the human
person, and those who are lovers of freedom and defenders of the
truth,” says His Eminence, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New
York. READ MORE...
April 4, 2014
Desmond and Mpho Tutu Challenge the World to Forgive
CAPE TOWN, South Africa—Desmond Tutu and his daughter Mpho Tutu today
announced the Tutu Global Forgiveness Challenge, a free online program
starting May 4, 2014, designed to teach the world how to forgive. In
early registration people from over 100 countries have already signed up
Archbishop Desmond Tutu won the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in leading non-violent
opposition to South Africa’s apartheid system of racial domination. The Truth and
Commission that he chaired created a way to address the overwhelming
suffering and grief that were the legacy of over four decades of racial
oppression. Since then he has taken his deeply human approach to
resolving conflict to many other countries including Northern Ireland
and Rwanda. His daughter, Mpho Tutu, has helped rape victims and
refugees displaced by war and is currently completing a Ph.D. on the
topic of forgiveness.
“Forgiving is a choice. A choice I have seen profoundly transform lives time and again,” says
Archbishop Tutu. “As Nelson Mandela said when he walked free after 27 years of prison, ‘I
if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in
prison.’ Mpho and I share a vision to bring the transformative power of
forgiveness to people everywhere and to see it spread through families,
communities, countries and our whole world." READ MORE...
April 1, 2014
Country Music Star Collin Raye Releases Powerful Memoir
‘A Voice Undefeated’ chronicles inspirational story of faith, tragedy and triumph
FRANCISCO—Collin Raye is one of America’s best-loved country music
singers, with 24 Top Ten Singles, including 16 No. 1 hits and a total of
five straight platinum and two gold albums, a record for the Epic
label. But perhaps most noteworthy is Raye’s remarkable personal story
outside of country music, which includes his conversion to Catholicism;
overcoming a devastating tragedy in his family; and his profound
advocacy and love for the poor and disabled. Raye chronicles his unique
and unforgettable religious journey and life as a country music star in
his new memoir, A VOICE UNDEFEATED. READ MORE...
April 1, 2014
Share Your Prayer campaign urges video and faith-driven response to child abuse and neglect
Each year, more than 680,000 children are
abused or neglected, and as many as 1,500 die as a result. In an effort
to protect these vulnerable children, Shepherding the Next Generation, a
network of more than 300 evangelical pastors and faith leaders, is
encouraging people nationwide to share their prayers for these children
through online videos in advance of the Blue Sunday Day of Prayer on April 27. READ MORE...
April 1, 2014
New Book by Award-winning Religion News Service Columnist Jonathan Merritt Challenges the Legalistic God Many Worship
Jonathan Merritt has been a Christian for two decades, he came close to
losing his faith in a spiritual drought that overwhelmed him with
emptiness. An award-winning columnist for Religion News Service and a
prolific commentator on faith and culture, Merritt believes there are
many people struggling as he was—he calls it an “emptiness epidemic.” In
his new book, Jesus Is Better Than You Imagined (Hachette Book
Group/FaithWords, $20.00 hardcover, April 1, 2014, foreword by John
Ortberg) he recounts unexpected encounters with Jesus that renew his
faith, liberate him from the shame of a long-held secret, and transform
Merritt offers his own experiences as a guide for those
who seek to meet this surprising God. READ MORE...
March 31, 2014
Servant Leadership School to Hold Second Co-Creation Conference in 2014Survivors Petition Governor & General Assembly
Ind.—Sexual assault survivors and supporters have collected
almost 1,700 petition signatures in less than three weeks to eliminate
the statute of limitations (SOL) on sexual assault in Indiana. They have
added the members of the State Senate and House to receive their
petition, along with Governor Mike Pence.
The Governor's Director
of Policy for Criminal Justice, Christina Trexler, received the
petition of over 1,000 signatures collected in the first four days of
their petition drive in a meeting March 13, 2014 with survivors'
advocates Joy Evans Ryder, Jason Benner, Cheryl Lewis Colsten, Keith
Morris and Anita Carpenter, CEO of the Indiana Coalition Against Sexual
Assault (INCASA). READ MORE...
March 26, 2014
A Pilgrimage by James Martin, S.J. Debuts at #9 on New York Times
JESUS: A Pilgrimage, the new book by James
Martin, S.J., debuts at #9 on the New York Times Bestseller List in the
Hardcover Nonfiction category on Sunday, March 30—just two and a half
weeks after its release.
The book also hit the Publishers Weekly nonfiction bestseller list this week at #20.
JESUS: A Pilgrimage (HarperOne; Hardcover; March 2014)—25 years in the
making, and, as Martin notes, “the result of a lifetime of passionate
prayer, study, and work”— Martin recreates the world of first-century
Galilee and Judea to usher readers into the life of Jesus. Painting a
vivid picture of a man many still struggle to understand today, he
addresses both Jesus’ human emotions and his divine activities, allowing
readers a unique look into the life of a man who experienced joy and
sorrow, triumph and grief, as well as friendship and fear. READ MORE...