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NIGERIA: MUSLIM FULANI HERDSMEN MASSACRES REACH COUNTRY'S SOUTH
Muslim Fulani attacks on Christians have advanced beyond Nigeria’s central zone into a southern state, with a church leader saying the aggression could cast Nigeria into civil war as a massacre this week took at least 27 lives.
Following the February massacre in Agatu, in the central-eastern state of Benue, and an attack last Monday on three predominantly Christian villages in the south-eastern state of Enugu, church and rights figures began to describe Muslim Fulani aggression as posing a threat of civil war.
Enugu shares a border with Benue. While a secessionist group called for Enugu natives to defend against further Fulani attacks, the Anglican archbishop of Enugu, said Muslim Fulani killings, kidnappings, destruction of farmland and rape have become a regular occurrence in central and southern parts of Nigeria.
“What happened in Agatu is again being spread to other areas, and this is breeding serious civil war that is very much in breach of peace in this country,” Rev Dr Emmanuel Olisa Chukwuma said in a press statement. “We don’t want war, but the way things are happening, if care is not taken, there is going to be another war which nobody can avert. It is either Nigeria must be one, or we disintegrate and go our ways.”
Morning Star News reports on a growing conflict in Nigeria... | more... |
NIGERIA: MUSLIM HERDSMEN REMAIN IN VILLAGES IN BENUE FOLLOWING MASSACRE - SOURCES
Morning Star News reports on ongoing attacks against Christians in Benue state… | more... |
28th April, 2016
CHRISTIAN AUTHOR AND SOCIAL COMMENTATOR ERIC METAXAS CALLS ON CHURCH NOT TO ALLOW ITSELF TO BE "BULLIED" OVER ISSUES LIKE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE AND ABORTION
The church should not allow itself to be “bullied” on its stance on issues like same-sex marriage and abortion, according to Christian author, radio host and social commentator Eric Metaxas.
Speaking at Scots Presbyterian Church in Melbourne's CBD last night, the American said it was time for the church to stand up and be heard on such issues.
“God is saying if you will stand, you have no idea what you can do,” he said, noting that it was time for Christians to “get serious” and stop “playing church”.
WORLDVIEW: RELIGIOUS MINORITIES IN TURKEY INCREASINGLY VULNERABLE TO GOVERNMENT RESTRICTIONS AND GROWING SOCIAL HOSTILITIES, SAYS REPORT
Religious minorities in Turkey are “increasingly vulnerable" to restrictive government legislation and growing social hostilities, according to a new report from religious freedom advocacy, Christian Solidarity Worldwide.
The report released last week says the Turkish state has used a variety of ways to “propagate the view among wider society that to be Turkish is to be Sunni Muslim”.
“The implicit suggestion is that religious minorities, or the non-religious, are not truly Turkish,” it says, noting that this has contributed to rising levels of hate speech that incites violence towards those who are not Sunni Muslim.
The report, which notes that the safety of Turkey’s religious and ethnic minorities is “precarious” due in part to the country’s porous borders which allow the passage of radical Islamists from Syria and Iraq, says these have included a number of acts of vandalism in and around churches and other places of worship such as synagogues.
DAVID ADAMS writes about a new Christian Solidarity Worldwide report showing a deteriorating situation for religious freedom in Turkey... | more... |
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SIGHT'S CHRISTIAN HERITAGE WALKS
Join Sight's editor David Adams for two hour walk around Melbourne's CBD looking at some of the city's rich Christian heritage.
Next Melbourne walk is on 7th May, 2016
Date change - Next Geelong walk is on 21st May, 2016
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ESSAY: "FROM DEVASTATION TO RECOVERY" - A YEAR ON FROM NEPAL'S COUNTRY-CHANGING EARTHQUAKE
On 25th April, World Vision Australia joined the people of Nepal in remembering last year's devastating earthquake, which killed almost 9000 people.
On a day that is sacred to Australians, Anzac Day, we also remembered those who died in Nepal and the hundreds of thousands of people World Vision has worked with in the past year as they struggle to rebuild.
Overcoming challenges brought by a harsh Himalayan winter, monsoons, fuel shortages and logistical complexities brought by tough terrain, World Vision has reached 386,984 people from emergency to recovery phase. Within 24 hours after the earthquake, we supported the affected people with life-saving food and emergency essentials, such as tarps, blankets and water purification tablets.
Over the past year, we have provided 20,789 families with shelter and non-food items, reached more than 72,000 people through repairs of health posts and provisions of medical supplies and equipment, as well as provided access to clean water to more than 118,000 people.
TIM COSTELLO, chief executive of World Vision Australia, talks about the challenges met and the job still to do in Nepal following last year's massive earthquake... | more... |
FASHION: INDUSTRY REPORT CARD SHOWS MORE EFFORT STILL NEEDED TO STOP EXPLOITATION OF WORKERS IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN
Australian companies have made good progress in ensuring workers in their supply chains aren't being exploited but there is much more work yet to be done with many brands still earning a failing or poor grade.
That’s the findings of the latest Baptist World Aid report into the Australian fashion industry – the third of its kind - which has given an A to F grading to more than 300 global and domestic fashion brands based on the strength of the systems they have in place to counter the risks of forced labour, child labour and exploitation in global supply chains.
The report – which this year used a an "enhanced" tool to decide gradings - found that while six of the 87 companies featured scored A grades and 25 Bs, nine received an F and 11 just passing grades of D. The average grade was C+.
Among those who received the highest grades were Fairtrade brands Etiko and Audrey Blue (which includes Mighty Good Undies) - both of which received an A+, as well as Inditex (Zara) – which received an A, and the Adidas Group, Liminal Apparel, Patagonia and Rrepp – which all received an A-. A number of Australian brands – such as the Cotton On Group and Pacific Brands - received a B+.
DAVID ADAMS reports on the findings of Baptist World Aid Australia's latest Australian Fashion Report... | more... |
ECUADOR: RESCUE AND RELIEF EFFORTS CONTINUE IN SOUTH AMERICAN NATION AS DEATH TOLL RISES IN WAKE OF MASSIVE EARTHQUAKE
Updated 23rd April, 2016
The death toll continues to rise in Ecuador as relief and rescue efforts continue in the South American nation following a devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit the country last weekend.
At least 600 people were killed in the quake - the country's worst in decades - and thousands have been injured. Dozens of people are still missing but authorities were still hopeful on Thursday this week that more people may yet be found alive.
Thousands of buildings were destroyed in the earthquake which struck off the Pacific coast at about 7pm local time last Saturday night.
Among the buildings damaged were homes, businesses, schools and hospitals - two of which collapsed completely - while hundreds more buildings have been at least partially damaged.
Infrastructure, including roads, has been further damaged by mudslides which, along with hundreds of aftershocks including a 6.0 magnitude quake on Thursday, have come in the wake of the quake.
DAVID ADAMS reports on the going relief and rescue efforts taking place in Ecuador following last Saturday's massive earthquake... | more... |
"NOW I JUST ASK FOR PRAYERS"
On Saturday, 16th April, our quiet family dinner was interrupted by a strong earthquake. At 6:58pm our peaceful Quito started to shake.
This wasn’t my first experience with earthquakes. I survived Chile’s 8.8 magnitude earthquake in 2010.
DIEGO RIVADENEIRA, of World Vision Ecuador, writes about what happened when the quake hit...
FOREIGN AID: CHRISTIAN LEADERS JOIN IN CALL FOR END TO BUDGET CUTS
The leaders of 12 Christian denominations and churches in Australia have joined in signing an open letter to Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison in which they call on him not to go ahead with a scheduled $224 million cut to the country's foreign aid budget.
In what has been described as an "unprecedented" step by church leaders, the letter - published in The Australian newspaper today - says the cuts will be the fourth time the government has reduced the foreign aid budget and comes "on top of more than $11 billion in cuts to aid".
"We believe it is time to reverse course," the church leaders write. "These cuts damage and undermine programs which have a direct impact on lives, livelihoods, security and opportunity of many of our region's poorest and most vulnerable people and communities, including women and girls and people with disability."
The signatories include the Archbishop Philip Freier, Anglican Primate of Australia, Roman Catholic Bishop Greg O'Kelly, of the diocese of Port Pirie, Pastor Stuart McMillan, president of the Uniting Church in Australia, and Salvation Army commissioners Floyd Tidd and James Condon.
DAVID ADAMS reports on an open letter from Christian leaders calling on the Federal Government not to make further cuts to Australia's foreign aid budget... | more... |
CALLING FOR HALT TO AID CUTS A "NO BRAINER", SAYS LETTER SIGNATORY
For Janet Woodlock - federal coordinator of the Churches of Christ in Australia and one of the signatories on the letter released this week, putting her name to the call for a halt in the cuts to the foreign aid budget was a "no brainer" if Australia is to be a just, compassionate, Christian values nation.
DAVID ADAMS speaks to one of the signatories of the letter, Churches of Christ Rev Janet Woodlock about her personal views on the issue...| more... |
AUSTRALIAN AID GROUPS CALL ON FEDERAL TREASURER TO "STOP THE CLOCK" ON SCHEDULED CUTS
We've created a page where you'll find a range of resources tailored specifically to help churches in their mission of sharing the Gospel with their communities whether that's in Australia or anywhere around the world.
Ever wondered about where Sherlock Holmes lived, who the real Dick Whittington was or the amazing story behind the discovery of the Cheapside Hoard? Each week, Exploring London takes an indepth look at London's history and where to find it as well as providing information on what's happening now for Londoners and travellers alike. Whether you're heading to the city for the first time or have worn through much shoe leather exploring its nooks and crannies, there's something on Exploring London for you. Head to www.exploring-london.com to find out more!
THE SIGHT NOTICEBOARD
Sight's Noticeboard is now up and running. If you have a classifieds ad, you can pin it to our noticeboard for as little as $10 a month.
Come and have a browse through the bookshop and let us know what books you'd recommend...|
OPEN BOOK - HINTS FROM THE SPIRIT OF HOLINESS: GOD'S ANGEL BUSY AT CAESAREA
Barnabas told the apostles of Saul's preaching in the synagogue at Damascus. That was when Saul had secretly returned to Jerusalem to meet the apostles. His life was in danger, so the apostles and disciples arranged for him to board ship at Caesarea and head home to Tarsus. This was the beginning of the re- education of Saul who was now known as Paul. Some time later, Barnabas would bring him down to Antioch.
In the meantime, the Holy Spirit was busy in the fertile Plain of Sharon, at the port city of Caesarea. Luke mentioned earlier that this was the city in which Philip resided. In this city there lived a Roman centurion who was visited by God's messenger one afternoon during the hour of prayer.
In Luke's Gospel we are told that Zacharias, father of John the Baptist, was visited by an angel. So was Mary, as was Joseph and the wise men. Angels in dazzling apparel were at Jesus' tomb. Now, Luke tells us how, around this time, a Roman centurion based in Caesarea, received an angelic visitor. This Roman officer was regular in his prayers to the Almighty and he also was very generous to the poor in his neighbourhood. Out of the blue, as it were, he was given confirmation that his prayers had been heard.
BRUCE C WEARNE continues with his look at the Book of Acts with a recounting of the visitation of the angel to the Roman centurion in Caesarea... |
SIGHT-SEEING: SILENCE OF THE CHURCHES - A CAMPAIGN FOR MODERN CHRISTIAN MARTYRS
At 8pm on Thursday, 28th April, Rome’s white marble Trevi Fountain - its swirling waters and the charging baroque statues of Oceanus, his sea shell chariot and attendant tritons and horses - will all be turned blood red in a campaign to raise awareness about modern day Christian martyrs.
The popular fountain is decidedly not Christian-themed and historically seems to have inspired only frivolity. The pontifical foundation Aid to the Church in Need and a coalition of other Catholic Italian non-governmental organisations that are co-sponsoring this performance art are counting on this unlikely juxtaposition. They hope that the coin tossing, selfie-taking throngs of tourists, as the frivolous Western public at large, will be given pause, if only briefly, to contemplate the surging pattern of mass murder of Christians purely for reasons of faith, largely by Islamists.
In an article first published on the First Things website in the US, NINA SHEA, director of the Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom in Washington, DC, urges churches in the US - and by implication other Western nations - not to forget those being martyred for their Christian faith around the world...|
THIS LIFE: LESSONS LEARNED DURING THE STORM
As I finished eating my supper, I listened to the ongoing storm coverage on television. Tornado warnings had been issued for several northeastern Oklahoma counties, including mine. While I am not afraid of the storms, I do follow the advice given by those who are more experienced than I am in these matters. When the weather forecaster urged Rogers County citizens to take cover, I didn’t hesitate.
The final warning I heard before heading to my master bedroom closest was a tornado had been sighted heading to Claremore and would strike at 8:11pm. Unless the tornado changed its route, my neighborhood was right in its path.
As I huddled with my puppy under a blanket in the closet, my cell phone pinged repeatedly with text messages from friends. “Are you watching the weather report?” “Are you okay?” “Are you taking cover?”
I answered a few messages and ignored others because my cell battery was low. I tried to comfort my dog. I had entered the closet at 7:45pm. Minutes seemed like hours as I listened to the storm sirens blasting a warning.
CAROL ROUND, in an article first published by ASSIST News Service, on how she found God's comfort during the storm... |
POSTCARDS: FRENCH PRESIDENT PRAISES PROTESTANTS FOR BEING "PRESENT WHERE OTHERS ARE ABSENT" IN FIRST OF ITS KIND MEETING
French President François Hollande praised Protestant churches and organisations for their work in areas such as health, social inclusion and support for refugees and migrants during a meeting on 13th April at the presidential Elysée Palace with 300 Protestant leaders and representatives.
"You are present where others are absent," Hollande told the representatives of churches, foundations, associations and institutions belonging to the Protestant Federation of France (FPF) and the Federation of Protestant Solidarity (FEP).
The French president also highlighted actions leading up to the United Nations climate conference in Paris in December, 2015, "where we shared the same values".
There are no official religious statistics for France but Protestants have been estimated at about two per cent of the country's 64 million people, compared to 65 per cent who describe themselves as Catholic and six per cent Muslim.
STEPHEN BROWN, in an article first published on the World Council of Churches website, reports on a recent meeting between Protestant representatives and the French President...|
CONVERSATIONS: JODY LIGHTFOOT, JUSTICE CAMPAIGNER
First up, what is Common Grace?
"Put simply, we're a movement of Christians who are passionate about Jesus and justice."
What led to it being founded?
"In 2014, a group of diverse Christian leaders came together in the Blue Mountains. We talked about how we have watched a new generation of Christians emerge who have experienced the transformation that comes from following Jesus.
"It's a generation that is acutely aware they serve a loving God who cares about His world. They know deep down that there is more to the story of being a Christian than just church on Sunday, a weeknight study group and a healthy devotional life. They read God’s word and hear His heart for those in need. They've heard how Christians have borne witness against injustices throughout history and are ready to act to be the change they want to see in the world. They feel inspired when they see the church living God's love in the world.
"Yet this generation also feels a sense of disappointment. They see little action in Christian culture on domestic issues. They see fragmented action in the church on key justice issues and, in some cases, no action at all. They feel upset that the perception of the church is often negative and they cringe when Christianity is in the news for all the wrong reasons.
A climate justice campaigner with Christian movement Common Grace, 30-year-old Sydneysider Jody Lightfoot speaks with DAVID ADAMS about the group's passion for "connecting personal faith with action" to make the world a better place... |
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ON THE SCREEN: GOD'S NOT DEAD 2 AN OVERLY HEAVY-HANDED ATTEMPT TO TACKLE SOME KEY QUESTIONS AROUND RELIGIOUS FREEDOMS
OK – first a confession: I never saw the first God’s Not Dead. Second – this film comes with an important message - that Christians are increasingly facing discrimination in the US because of their faith. Unfortuately this message is delivered in such a heavy-handed way, that the film turns into a soapbox.
God’s Not Dead 2 tells the story of school teacher Grace Wesley (played by Melissa Joan Hart) who gets hauled before a court after she mentions the words of Jesus, purportedly breaching laws forbidding proselytising in the classroom, when a student asks her a question about the similarities between His teachings and those of Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr.
While this is at its essence a courtroom drama (although at times it represents something of a Christian conference gathering when a number of high profile Christian witnesses are allowed to testify about their faith in Wesley’s defence), at the same time, the stories of a number of other people are intertwined with that of Wesley.
BOOKS: A GUIDE TO UPSKILLING FOR FURTHER THEOLOGICAL STUDY
Graduate level theological study requires a new set of skills that do not necessarily come intuitively. Students can study the information and content of individual theology units or even courses, without picking up the study skills and broader theological framework that help them make the most of the experience. Some initial tutoring in foundational skills can help set students up for greater success.
Zoë Bennett is a master teacher and Anglia Ruskin University’s director of postgraduate studies in pastoral theology. Over the last two decades, she has developed and coordinated MA and professional doctorate courses, and is at her best helping students make the most of practical theology study and supervising their research.
Your MA in Theology is Bennett’s concise and readable handbook filled with practical advice on what master’s level theological study involves and requires. It is helpful to understand what is expected at this level of study – a certain level of in-depth knowledge and understanding, generic abilities in problem solving and independent research, but not the same depth and originality that a doctorate expects.
DARREN CRONSHAW finds Zoë Bennett's Your MA in Theology a rewarding read... |
THE NET: GOT QUESTIONS?
Something of a veteran site these days, Got Questions? is simply, as the name suggests, a place where you find some answers to many of those questions you may have about God, Jesus, the Bible or an aspect of theology. The US-based site was founded by S Michael Houdmann and his wife in 2002 after they sought God about what He wanted them to do (he had just graduated from Bible college). They felt led to create a Christian website where "people could come and ask any question they have about the Bible". The result is the website which, thanks to a team of volunteers who come from across the spectrum of denominations, now boasts to have answered 461,862 questions - everything from what the Bible says about the Trinity to what happens after death and whether pets go to Heaven (and yes, there are also questions related to pretty much any controversial subject you can think of).
Have a question? DAVID ADAMS writes about a site which has some answers... |
MUSIC: GYMEA BAPTIST'S NEW HORIZON'S A "GENUINE DELIGHT"
If I was to present to you a worship EP from a large church in the Sydney area, you would think Hillsong right? Ah, but there is more than one church in Sydney that has the gift of music to offer the world. May I introduce you to Gymea Baptist Church and their worship EP New Horizons.
New Horizons - the church's first recording project since 1984 - offers five new contemporary home-grown congregational worship songs of genuine quality that have been created to bless, encourage and inspire worship leaders around the world. Yes, it’s an ambitious goal considering our leviathan brothers at Hillsong, yet it is already coming to pass with churches around the world downloading the free lyrics and chord charts from their web site.
The EP starts strongly with Whatever It Takes, a catchy, rocky, pulsating song of praise offerings our services to God - wherever He takes us. From here, New Horizons really takes off into the stratosphere with You Won’t Let Go, Waterfalls, and Count As Loss. These songs are deeply stirring with each song better than the last. They form a worship progression that is equal to any in the world in terms of lyrical content, song writing and, most importantly, spiritual engagement. The anthem-like title track New Horizons closes out the EP perfectly.
ROBBIE TOWNSEND finds Gymea Baptist Church's new EP...well..."delightful"...|
29th April, 2016
THE TCM UPDATE: C3 RELEASES ABIDE; AND, IN OTHER NEWS, THIRD DAY PLAY AT YANKEE STADIUM...
To hear CAM WANT with this week's edition of The TCM Update, simply click on the link... |
APPS: ENRICHING YOUR PRAYER LIFE, AND, AN APP TO HELP MEN STEP OUT OF THE ORDINARY Do you sometimes find yourself lost for words when you pray? Or know you should pray but circumstances have pulled your spirit down and you feel you can't? If so, there's no need to feel alone: the Abide team says that 75 per cent of Christians are unsatisfied with their prayer life. And the Abide Prayer app may be just what you need. There's a daily prayer to listen to and pray along with or there are topics you can choose from according to your situation. This app may be just the thing to start you praying regularly. Available for Apple and Android devices.
ALAN TAYLOR looks at apps Abide Prayer and Uncommen... |
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11th March, 2016
Stay four nights but only pay for two at the Daydream Island Resort and Spa in Queensland's Whitsundays.
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KNOW IT ALL: WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
• While the date of Shakespeare's death isn't conclusively known, scholars have traditionally put it on 23rd April, 1616 (based on the fact his body was recorded as being interred a couple of days later in Holy Trinity Church in Stratford on 25th April).
• The date of his death is traditionally believed to also be that of his birth, although, again, it's not conclusively known but based on the fact he is known to have been was baptised on 26th April, 1564 (baptisms traditionally occurred three days after birth).
• Shakespeare was 52 when he died. He was survived by his wife Anne Hathaway (he had married her when he was 18-years-old and she was 26 in 1582 when she was three months pregnant with their first child) as well as two of his three children (Susanna and twins Hamnet and Judith - Hamnet died before his father at the age of just 11).
William Shakespeare, arguably the most famous and influential of all English writers, died 400 years ago this month. DAVID ADAMS looks at some facts you may not know about the man known as the 'Bard of Avon' and his work...|
TRENDSPOTTER: FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT AGAINST MANSPREADING
It's been around for a while but it's only in relatively recent times, thanks to the internet, that the spotlight has been shone upon manspreading, the name (and hashtag) given to describe the situation when a man takes up more than one seat on public transport by sitting with their knees wide open. Public shaming of those engaged in the practice - particularly anyone with celebrity appeal - has been reported breathlessly across social media and in January last year, New York's Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) launched a new campaign tackling subway etiquette which specifically addressed the problem through posters asking men to "stop the spread" (indeed, the practice has reportedly even led to court appearances in the Big Apple).
DAVID ADAMS looks at efforts to address one of the scourges of public transport...|
ORIGINS: TWITTER MARKS 10 YEARS OF TWEETS
The social network Twitter came of age this month, celebrating 10 years since the first tweet was sent.
It was on 21st March, 2006, that the service - then still known as twttr was launched when co-founder Jack Dorsey sent the first tweet, "just setting up my twttr".
The platform - which was the creation of Dorsey, then an undergraduate at New York University and now (second time around) CEO, along with Evan Wiliams, Biz Stone and Noah Glass - went public on 15th July that same year.
The use of the hashtag was proposed the following year by early adopter Chris Messina as a way of bringing together conversations around particular topics.
DAVID ADAMS takes a quick look back at where it started for Twitter... |
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In Sight's Snapshot, we'll endeavour to publish an image from somewhere around the globe every week. To see this image in a larger scale and for details of how you can submit images, follow the link...|
THE BIG PICTURE: FIND GOD
They may have won the Guinness Book of Records for the world’s largest corn maze, but after the November season of 2014, the owners of the Cool Patch Pumpkins maze in Dixon, California were forced to consider whether bigger truly was better.
There had been trip-ups before; from time to time the odd patron might pass out in the 16 hectare (40 acre) labyrinth, but it was not until its size was upped to a gargantuan 25 hectares (63 acres) that the real trouble began.
People were getting lost, and not the regular ‘lost in a maze’ kind of lost. Paying customers were wandering for hours in the sun, trapped with small children in a muddle of paths that stretched far too far, then the sun would set. All too often the day would end with a desperate call to 911.
To see Outreach Media's April poster and read the full text, follow the link... | more... |
WORDPLAY CHALLENGE #7. AND THE ANSWER IS...
This wordcloud represents the words contained in a oft-quoted passage from the Bible (with the more frequently used words shown in larger type). The challenge for you is to identify the passage - which book and chapter does it come from. To see the answer, simply follow the link... | more... |
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THE SIGHT BOOKCLUB
For April-May, 2016, we're reading James L Rubart's novel, The Five Times I Met Myself (Thomas Nelson, 2015).
To register your group (and receive our discussion notes via email) and for more details about how the club works, head here...
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THEY SAID IT
"To protect our country, to protect our society, to protect our economy and to protect our children - we must protect the family. As the most sacred national institution and all that goes towards making our families strong."
- Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison in a speech to the Australian Christian Lobby's national conference on 23rd April, 2016.
"The European Union doesn't moderate British influence - it magnifies it. A strong Europe is not a threat to Britain's global leadership; it enhances Britain's global leadership...So the US and the world need your outsized influence to continue - including within Europe."
- US President Barack Obama writing in the UK's Telegraph newspaper on 23rd April, 2016, in which he puts forward the argument for Britain - where a referendum will take place in June over whether the UK should remain part of the EU - to remain part of the European Union.
For more of They Said It, follow the link... more...
THIS WEEK ON THE WEB
15th April, 2016
Open Doors Australia are offering a rare chance to peek behind the walls of the 'Hermit Kingdom' of North Korea. The organisation, which says the country is the hardest place in the world to be a Christian, has published 21 images depicting daily life there. To see the images, head here...
OF FANCY HORSE HAIRCUTS; SNAPPING SELFIES; TWO MESSAGES IN A BOTTLE; AND, A CHURCH IN THE ROCKS...
They're haircuts for horses - but with a difference. A UK-based horse clipper, Melody Hames, is producing some unusual designs on horse backs thanks to a growing trend for horse haircuts to be more than a simple trim. Her designs - via her business JMC Equestrian - reportedly depict everything from love-hearts to birds and even a castle - all apparently driven by an increasing demand from customers. Fancy.
ADAMS writes about the odder side of life...|
CHRISTIAN SYMBOL DISCOVERED ON ROMAN-ERA POTTERY SHARD FOUND IN LONDON...
A 4th century piece of pottery discovered in London almost 50 years ago has recently been found to bear a Christian symbol in what experts say is a rare example of such a find from the city's Roman period.
The symbol, etched into the pottery, depicts the first two letters of the Greek word for Christ, Christos. The monogram, known as the chi-rho (chi being the Greek X and rho being the Greek P), was reportedly recently discovered on the pottery piece by volunteers at the Museum of London's Archaeological Archive.