Beliefs Religion News Roundup

Ebola spread * BYU beards * Bishop resigns : Monday’s Roundup

(RNS1-JULY 28) Infectious disease specialists work to diagnose possible Ebola cases in Africa on April 4, 2013. For the first time in West Africa, a case of Ebola was confirmed on March 21, 2013, three weeks after the first alert of a possible viral haemorrhagic fever emerged from Guinea’s Forest region.

Catching up from the weekend? Here are 10 items to get you started:

(RNS1-JULY 28) Infectious disease specialists work to diagnose possible Ebola cases in Africa on April 4, 2013. For the first time in West Africa, a case of Ebola was confirmed on March 21, 2013, three weeks after the first alert of a possible viral haemorrhagic fever emerged from Guinea’s Forest region.

Creative Commons image by European Commission

Infectious disease specialists work to diagnose possible Ebola cases in Africa on April 4, 2013. RNS file photo.

 

An American doctor who was exposed to Ebola while volunteering in Sierra Leone has been admitted at the National Institutes of Health near DC. Richard Sacra, an American missionary doctor who was working in Liberia, was released from the Nebraska Medical Center after contracting the virus.

The Muslim community is reeling from Friday’s news that a man who claimed to have Muslim ties beheaded a woman co-worker after being fired from his job in Oklahoma.

Megachurch leader T.D. Jakes is threatening to sue rappers Young Jeezy, Kendrick Lamar over sampled speech on ‘Holy Ghost’ remix, saying it rips from one of his sermons.

Also in entertainment news, Miami pastor Rich Wilkerson Jr., the televangelist’s son who performed Kim-Kanye’s wedding, will get a TV show.

Bishop Kieran Conry, previously considered one of the most influential prelates in England, has abruptly resigned, admitting he was “unfaithful.”

Interesting detail from a profile of Ferguson’s Police Chief Thomas Jackson: he has been meeting with a group of pastors called “Clergy United” almost daily.

Brazil’s increasingly powerful evangelical Christians are close to electing one of their own as president.

Students at Brigham Young University protested the school’s ban on beards. Plus, Mormon feminists may have been surprised by some subtle changes in vocabulary and approach over the weekend at the general women’s meeting, where females were called not just “sisters” but “blessed disciples of Jesus Christ.”

Sudan apostasy woman Mariam Ibrahim, who appeared at the Values Voters Summit gathering over the weekend, plans to campaign against religious persecution.

Plus, in sports:

About the author

Sarah Pulliam Bailey

Sarah Pulliam Bailey is a national correspondent for RNS, covering how faith intersects with politics, culture and other news. She previously served as online editor for Christianity Today where she remains an editor-at-large.

3 Comments

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  • Evangelicism could well be the first step in abandoning religion. The strict Calvinist families of New England were the first, after a few generations, to abandon religion (or otherworldly religion) for a focus on humanity, prosperity, and justice in this world.

    In certain places evangelism, especially if Calvinist, has encouraged the behavioral changes that are required for acquiring prosperity. In other words they do not just preach prosperity, but teach it.

    Calvinism in practice throws out the Catholic emphasis that God is there to comfort you, even as you suffer injustice, in favor of saying that YOU exist for the greater glory of God and that you need to be an active agent of God’s glory. You need to show glory to God by abandoning drinking, gambling, sin in favor of prudence, sobriety, constant hard work, savings AND mutual assistance among neighbors. Ironically Calvinism, which denies that salvation is won through virtue, encourages virtue by making the individual’s salvation unimportant and replacing that emphasis with the obligation to live a life that gives glory to God. Catholic pastors may offer comfort and emphasize the compassion of Christ and Mary and the saints but Calvinist pastors offer only a kick in the pants to remind you of your obligations to God. Some evangelicals overemphasize faith and neglect behavior. Calvinism makes behavior, showing Glory to God through deeds, the test of faith. The Catholic church may emphasize the need for the rich and the government to help the poor but Calvinism focuses on how the poor can help themselves and each other.

    Years ago there was an article in the New Yorker about a Central American valley, mostly native American, that converted from a pious form of Catholicism to a Calvinist branch of evangelicalism. The valley when Catholic suffered from intense poverty and alcoholism. After years of Calvinism the valley was prosperous and sober. the Mormon Church offers a similar conversion of behavior in such a way as to encourage prosperity and strong, sober families.

    Catholicism does not stand a chance among the poor. Either people become prosperously secular or cynically secular or they find a more helpful religion. More helpful in this world.

    Catholics, especially conservative Catholics, emphasizes that the church exists to help people get to heaven.

    P.S. I am not a Calvinist, nor am I religious. I was, however, educated by the Jesuits, whose Calvinist sounding motto is “For the Greater Glory of God.” Calvin and the founder of the Jesuits attended the same seminary in Paris within a few years of each other.

  • John,
    I am a Calvinist and religious. You should stick to talking about what you know because today’s diatribe made little sense.
    Peace
    +

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