Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Sundance Film Review: ‘Come Sunday’



JANUARY 22, 2018 11:09AM PT


Chiwetel Ejiofor excels as a preacher forced to rethink his faith in this clear-eyed look at power struggles in the Evangelical community.

By Peter Debruge @AskDebruge



CREDIT: COURTESY OF SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL/TINA ROWDEN
Director: Joshua MarstonWith: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Condola Rashad, Jason Segel, Martin Sheen, Lakeith Stanfield, Danny Glover.

1 hour 45 minutes

“Come Sunday” may be the perfect movie for Netflix. Too fair-and-balanced to have come from the faith-based community and far too churchy to have gotten the blessing of any studio, director Joshua Marston’s exceptional, serious-minded adaptation of a 2005 episode of NPR’s “This American Life” recognizes the dramatic and ultimately uplifting potential in the true story of a Pentecostal bishop who lost both his flock and the backing of church leaders after he began to question one of the core beliefs of his religion — namely, the notion that souls must be “saved” in order to avoid eternal damnation.

Had it been destined for a conventional theatrical release, “Come Sunday” likely would have bombed in the big-city markets where such indies begin their journey, never reaching the Heartland audiences who might appreciate it most. Rolling out on Netflix in April, however, “Come Sunday” will be available to millions of households in virtually every market as part of the standard $10 subscription, which means it could get seen by audiences who never would have spent $10 on a movie ticket (it’s been nearly two decades since Robert Duvall succeeded in reaching Evangelicals and art-house crowds alike with “The Apostle”).

For those who choose to sample “Come Sunday,” they’ll be rewarded not only by the compelling story of a devout Christian wrestling with his faith but also by one of the great screen performances of recent years, as “12 Years a Slave” star Chiwetel Ejiofor captures both the charismatic passion and softer-voiced introspective side of bishop Carlton Pearson, whose preaching style was unique enough to bring black and white worshipers together under the same roof. As bishop of Higher Dimensions Family Church in Tulsa, Okla., Pearson preached to a packed congregation (and nationwide television audience) about the perils of hell and what they must do to enter heaven.


Monday, January 22, 2018

Michael Abrahams | Pope Francis’ hypocrisy



Published:Monday | January 22, 2018 | 12:52 AM

Michael Abrahams



Abrahams


Father Fernando Karadima appeared to be a really cool guy. A very popular figure in Chile, he was a spiritual leader and father figure for many young men in Santiago, the nation’s capital. Based in the parish Parroquia El Bosque, he mingled with the rich and famous, including some of the city’s most influential families. According to The New York Times, “Impeccably dressed and with perfectly groomed nails and slicked-back hair, Father Karadima cut an aristocratic figure, appealing to both young and old in Chile's elite.”

But there was a dark and sinister side to Karadima. In 1984, a group of parishioners filed a report about his improper conduct to Archbishop Juan Francisco Fresno, but, according to a court statement by one of the parishioners, the letter was “torn up and thrown away”.

In 2003, Cardinal Francisco Javier Errázuriz Ossa was informed by parishioner José Murillo about Karadima’s alleged abuses. However, the cardinal’s response was to tell Murillo that he was praying for him. No investigation was opened. It was not until 2004, twenty years after the first reports were made, that the first investigation into Karadima’s perverted activities was opened by the Catholic Church. Two years later, the investigator stated that he found "the accusers to be credible” and suggested that action be taken. Unfortunately, the cardinal stopped the investigation for more than three years, claiming to be waiting for more evidence and because he thought the allegations were beyond the statute of limitations.

In April 2010, a civil criminal complaint was filed by four men who claimed to have been abused by Karadima. But after seven months of conducting the probe, the claims were dismissed by the court, ruling that there was not enough evidence to charge him. The accusers’ lawyer, Juan Pablo Hermosilla, claimed that the state prosecutor had gathered testimony from dozens of witnesses that “established a pattern of decades of abusive behaviour”, but that the judge, Leonardo Valdivieso, never gave the parties access to the investigation report until the day he closed the case, and withheld testimony and other evidence that could have advanced it.

The judge also dismissed the case without having Father Karadima face his accusers, as they had requested, after defence lawyers presented the court with medical certificates asserting that the priest could have a heart attack if forced to do so.

Finally, in 2011, after several years of a Catholic canonical investigation, the Vatican found Karadima guilty of sexually and psychologically abusing minors and sent him to retire to a "life of prayer and penitence" and to "lifelong prohibition from the public exercise of any ministerial act, particularly confession and the spiritual guidance of any category of persons”.

Karadima had trained 50 priests and four bishops. One of those bishops, Juan Barros Madrid, who moved in his inner circle, figured prominently in the scandal, as victims of abuse claimed that he knew about Karadima’s abusive behaviour, but did nothing about it. One victim claimed that Bishop Barros even witnessed him being abused.

Pope Francis had vowed to take abuse of children by clergy seriously, even setting up a Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors in 2014. Last week, while visiting Chile, Francis expressed “pain and shame” over the abuse scandal and begged for victims’ forgiveness, meeting and weeping with survivors of abuse.

However, he revealed his true colours when he made statements in support of Barros. In an about-turn, Francis strongly defended him, saying, “The day someone brings me proof against Bishop Barros, then I will talk. But there is not one single piece of evidence. It is all calumny! Is that clear?”


World Day of Peace: Migration as an opportunity to build peace

latest press releases


Content:


Webnews, 01/01/2018


In his Message for the World Day of Peace, Pope Francis encouraged to offer «refugees, migrants and victims of human trafficking an opportunity to find the peace they seek».





The Holy Father also underlined that political leaders should «by practising the virtue of prudence, […] take practical measures to welcome, promote, protect and integrate» men and women, children, young and elderly people searching for peace.

According to Pope Francis, this spirit should guide the process leading to the adoption of the two UN Global Compacts for Migration and Refugees in the coming year. The twenty action points recently published by the Migrants & Refugees Section of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development provide some concrete recommendations in this regard.

While deploring the spread of rhetoric undermining the human dignity of migrants and refugees, Pope Francis highlighted their enriching contributions to host societies by bringing «their courage, skills, energy and aspirations, as well as the treasures of their own cultures».

COMECE supports the protection of persons in mobility, either migrants or refugees, at all stages of their journey, the fight against trafficking in human beings and tackling the root causes of forced migration.

Recently, COMECE, together with other Christian organisations, contributed to the European Commission’s public consultation on legal migration of non-EU citizens.



The Devil's Trio - Part 1 · May 01, 2002

The Devil's Trio - Part 1 · May 01, 2002

By Elder Lawrence Nelson

In our last two sermons we have discussed two members of the devil’s trio. The first is the ten-horned beast of Revelation 13, which the Bible clearly identifies to be the papacy. The second is the lamb-like, two-horned beast found in the same chapter which is the United States of America, established as a Protestant nation and described as becoming so apostate as to join hands with the papal power of Catholicism.

In this message I will discuss the third member which comprises the devil’s end-time trio which the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy reveal to be spiritualism. The following quotation from Testimonies for the Church, Volume 5, p. 451 reveals what we are to expect from this evil, last-day union of the Papacy, apostate Protestantism and spiritualism. “When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with spiritualism, when, under the influence of this threefold union, our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government, and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near. As the approach of the Roman armies was a sign to the disciples of the impending destruction of Jerusalem, so may this apostasy be a sign to us that the limit of God’s forbearance is reached, that the measure of our nation’s iniquity is full, and that the angel of mercy is about to take her flight, never to return.”

With this sad, heartbreaking introduction, let us pray. Our loving Father, in the name of Jesus we plead for divine guidance as we discuss this third power of spiritualism, which is an intricate member of the devil’s end-time trio. We realize that we are attacking the very dragon himself, which in Thy Word describes Satan as being able to produce wonder-working miracles of deception for the purpose to honor his papal mark of authority – Sunday worship. We plead that Thou wilt awaken Thy sleeping church to this danger. Help each member to become such students of Thy Word, through divine guidance, that we shall be able to resist this deceiving power of Satan and gain victory over his delusions, for we must discern truth from error. This we ask in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Let us now turn to the scriptures where we find this third part of the trio – spiritualism – which comprises the devil’s trio. Let us read Revelation 13:13, 14 and Revelation 16: 14, 15. “And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.” “And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.”

We begin with a question: “What major belief is held in common by the religions of this world (except God’s remnant) which makes it absolutely impossible to resist the power of spiritualism?” – We will find the answer in The Great Controversy p. 551. “The doctrine of natural immortality, first borrowed from the pagan philosophy, and in the darkness of the great apostasy incorporated into the Christian faith, has supplanted the truth, so plainly taught in Scripture that, ‘the dead know not anything.’”


Sunday, January 21, 2018

Descendants of 272 Slaves Sold By Georgetown Say They Want Reparation$$$ Now!





Angela HelmToday 1:00pm
Filed to:GEORGETOWN




A Jesuit statue is seen in front of Freedom Hall, formerly named Mulledy Hall, on the Georgetown University campus, Sept. 1, 2016, in Washington, D.C. After renaming the Mulledy and McSherry buildings at Georgetown University temporarily to Freedom Hall and Remembrance Hall, Georgetown University will give preference in admissions to the descendants of slaves owned by the Maryland Jesuits as part of its effort to atone for profiting from the sale of enslaved people. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)



As reported by The Root when the story first broke, the storied academic institution of Georgetown owes its entire existence to the sale of enslaved black men women and children. The sale of these humans by Jesuit priests saved the school from bankruptcy; to this day it remains a thriving academic institution, thick with a rich endowment.




What Does Georgetown University Owe the 272…

Read more

And although Georgetown has apologized, and even offered an admissions advantage to the descendants of the 272 slaves it sold (talk about a “legacy” edge), some of those descendants are saying it’s not nearly commensurate for what their ancestors gave to the school.

Georgia Goslee, lead counsel for the GU272 Isaac Hawkins Legacy group, which includes 200 people, says her clients “do not believe Georgetown has fully atoned for the wealth it unjustly accumulated off the back of unpaid slave labor,” according to the Washington Post.

The GU272 Isaac Hawkins Legacy group has asked for a direct benefit for descendants. The Post reports that Thomas Craemer, an associate professor at the University of Connecticut, helped the group calculate their request for restitution, based on the idea that forced labor created wealth for others than the enslaved people. He also said descendants would otherwise have inherited money earned through their foreparents’ wages and interest.

In other words, gimme the loot.



Georgetown University’s ‘Reparations’ Plan…

Read more

Georgetown spokesman, Meghan Dubyak, recently said that the school has “taken initial steps” to right the wrong including a formal apology remaining two buildings for the descendants, and the admissions advantage. It has also offered professional-level genealogy for the offspring.

And Georgetown’s president, John DeGioia, doesn’t seem to want to really discuss the “r” word (i.e., “reparations”) and has already proposed amends that are linked to more education, even partnering with HBCUs.


Do Ben Carson’s Son And Wife Work For HUD, Too?


Opinion



ROBYN BECK
BY PARKER RILEY
23 HOURS AGO


As we all know, Ben Carson, who is a former neurosurgeon, is the unqualified secretary of HUD (Housing and Urban Development). Carson has been protested for being terrible at his job and he is even attempting to take away fair housing from low-income people.

However, Carson tainting HUD doesn’t just end with him. Candy Carson, his wife, and his son, Ben Carson Jr., has had some questionable involvement at HUD, according to Mother Jones. “With anything where we can be helpful, if Dad asks us to come along and help out, we’ll always do that,” Ben Jr. said in August after being asked about his role. “We’re here to offer support, whatever we can do.”

Come along and help out? Did you “come along and help out” when he was performing brain surgery? Sounds like serious nepotism.

CREW (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington), a watchdog group, demanded further details under the Freedom of Information Act, but the request was shut down, according to a report published by the Freedom From Religious Foundation (FFRF) on Thursday.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Key cardinal distances himself from pope abuse comment


by Reuters
Saturday, 20 January 2018 18:20 GM



By Philip Pullella and Caroline Stauffer

TRUJILLO, Peru, Jan 20 (Reuters) - A key U.S. cardinal distanced himself on Saturday from comments on sex abuse by Pope Francis, a remarkable move that appeared to underscore divisions in the Catholic Church over how to treat accusations.

Cardinal Sean O'Malley of Boston said in a statement "it is understandable" that comments made by the pope in Chile on Thursday were "a source of great pain for survivors of sexual abuse by clergy or any other perpetrator."

In response to a question from a reporter on accusations against Juan Barros, a Chilean bishop appointed by the pope in 2015 who is accused of protecting a pedophile, the pope said:

"The day I see proof against Bishop Barros, then I will talk. There is not a single piece of evidence against him. It is all slander. Is that clear?"

The pope's comments appearing to dismiss the credibility of accusers was widely criticised by victims, their advocates and editorials in Chile and the pope's native Argentina.

Barros has been accused of protecting his former mentor, Father Fernando Karadima, who was found guilty in a Vatican investigation in 2011 of abusing teenage boys over many years. He denies the allegations and Barros said he was unaware of any wrongdoing. The Barros-Karadima case has riveted Chile for years.

O'Malley's statement on the pope's choice of language said: "Words that convey the message 'if you cannot prove your claims then you will not be believed' abandon those who have suffered reprehensible criminal violations of their human dignity and relegate survivors to discredited exile."


Waco - A New Revelation

Fasting, Weight-loss, and Your Health




Ophelia Gherman, M.D.
January 18, 2018

What is intermittent fasting? Is it really good for you? If so, how does it work? Let's find out.





Dieting and weight loss are popular New Year’s Resolution for many. Most popular diets require caloric restrictions at mealtime, which can be difficult and frustrating. Among the many new diets that roll around each year, fasting, or periodic abstinence from food, has regained popularity in the health and fitness arena. Fasting has been practiced from antiquity and exists in various forms. Some well-known forms of fasting are voluntary abstinence from all foods for a period of time, while others involve voluntary abstinence from certain foods, such as animal products in The Daniel Fast. “A partial fast may be preferred to overcome an illness; a total fast may be used on other occasions”(A. Thrash).

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting gained quite a following in 2016 and 2017 and is defined as a long cycle of fasting and shorter period of non-fasting throughout the day. There are different versions but the idea is basically to choose 8-10 hours of the day in which to eat your meals, leaving the remaining 14-16 hours of the day for fasting. So why would someone choose this lifestyle and what are the health benefits?


Health Benefits

Among the many benefits of intermittent fasting, are weight loss, improved blood pressure, and glucose control. It serves as a multitasking tool that helps fight inflammation, improve digestion, and boost your longevity. In several studies, the practice of intermittent fasting helped decrease inflammatory numbers, c-reactive protein (CRP), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), adiponectin, leptin, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and IGF-1, all of which have a negative impact on our health. Therefore, through intermittent fasting that skips late-night meals, these inflammatory substances are no longer being produced.

Fasting also aids in the production of ghrelin, which suppresses inflammation and improves dopamine concentration in the brain. So high ghrelin produces an anti-depressant effect. Intermittent fasting also increases nerve cell production, improving growth in the hippocampus and reducing age-related atrophy and brain cell wasting.


How to begin

If you are at high risk of multiple diseases and uncontrolled weight or want to improve your longevity and quality of health, you may consider a healthy intermittent fasting diet plan for you. You can start by choosing two or three non-consecutive days to fast after 5 pm, thus allowing your gut and digestion to rest until 8 am the next day.


To avoid dehydration, water intake is crucial in all forms of fasting.

Some fasting fads suggest skipping breakfast, however, a study by researchers from Loma Linda University School of Public Health and the Institute for Clinical and Experimental Medicine in Prague, Czech Republic, showed that eating breakfast and not skipping it, and making it the biggest meal of the day, rather than lunch, had the most significant impact on weight loss. Additionally, numerous studies have shown that night time eating increases the inflammatory hormone insulin in our bodies, which leads to poor sleep quality, obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. This just confirms an ancient adage: "Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper."

“The true fasting which should be recommended to all, is abstinence from every stimulating kind of food, and the proper use of wholesome, simple food, which God has provided in abundance. Men need to think less about what they shall eat and drink of temporal food, and much more in regard to the food from heaven, that will give tone and vitality to the whole religious experience. Now and onward till the close of time the people of God should …set aside days for fasting and prayer. Entire abstinence from food may not be required, but they should eat sparingly of the most simple food.”—Counsels on Diet, p 188


Jesuit “Moral Theology” and the Destruction of Western Morality



Jesuit Moral Theology and the Destruction of Western Morality, PDF format


Introduction

Do you want to know why the West has become a moral cesspool? A major reason is Jesuit “moral theology”, which has been taught for the past four centuries and has spread through western society like leaven. For this order of Roman Catholic priests has worked, since its inception, to conquer Protestantism, and the Protestant-influenced West, for the pope of Rome. And to do that, it has worked to destroy, indeed annihilate, western morality, which was so largely the product of the influence of Protestantism.

What you are about to read will shock and horrify every true Christian! This is not to say that the Jesuits are solely responsible for the collapse of the western world’s morals; but they are most definitely a major cause of it.

In order to analyse the various immoral, vile, perverted and utterly anti-scriptural Jesuit doctrines in the light of the Bible, quotations from the works of Jesuit theologians themselves will be given. These are taken from two books which powerfully expose the Jesuit Order: History of the Jesuits, by Theodor Griesinger,[1] and Fifty Years in the Church of Rome, by Charles Chiniquy.[2] Protestants of previous generations were well aware of the Jesuits and their intrigues, thanks to books like these; but alas, today the situation is very different. Very little is known about them at all, which has had devastatingly tragic results within the ranks of Protestantism, and within western society in general. For this very purpose I wrote my own book, The Jesuits: the Secret Army of the Papacy.[3]

As this pamphlet will show, Jesuit “moral theology” has (for the most part unknowingly) been absorbed into western society, including into what has been called the “Protestant West”. And the results are to be seen all around us. It is no exaggeration to say that the Jesuit Order has played a huge role in altering the morals of the western world.

May the Lord be pleased to use this present pamphlet to open the eyes of many to the disgusting “moral theology” of the Jesuits.

It must be pointed out that although Griesinger refers to these Jesuit priests by their title of “Father”, Christians are commanded not to give this title to any man, in a spiritual sense (Matt. 23:9); and in this present pamphlet I only do so in the imaginary exchanges between a Roman Catholic and a Jesuit in the confessional, where the Roman Catholic will of course call the priest, “Father.”


Recommendations for the Vice President’s Trip to the Middle East



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 19, 2018

Contact: Ninar Keyrouz
Tel: (202) 624-7898
Email: press@indefenseofchristians.org


Washington, DC, January 19– Today, Vice President Mike Pence will travel to the Middle East for a weeklong trip where he will stop in Egypt, Israel and Jordan. It has been reported that on his trip, the Vice President will highlight the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and U.S. efforts to aid persecuted Christians and other religious minorities in the region.

IDC applauds the Vice President’s efforts to advocate for religious freedom for Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East, particularly during his trip to Egypt. This year alone, Coptic Christians have suffered through 3 large scale attacks which left dozens dead, seen mob attacks on their communities and have had several churches forcefully closed down or attacked.

During his trip to the Middle East, the Vice President should:

Leverage the hundreds of millions of dollars in security assistance that the U.S. gives Egypt annually by pressuring Egyptian President Abdelfattah al-Sisi to scale-up security for churches and monasteries in light of recent attacks.
Ensure that Israel protects the religious freedom of all peoples and faith and, in addition, respects the freedom to access all religious sites in the holy city of Jerusalem.

IDC is currently supporting Resolution 673 which reaffirms the importance of the U.S.-Egypt partnership in the region and the fight against terrorism, and encourages the Egyptian government to bring terrorist who have targeted Coptic Christians to justice. It also pushes for Coptic Christians to be given the same rights as other Egyptian citizens.


Source


Gold is ‘false god’ fueling ‘slavery,’ pope says. Much of the metal ends up in Miami



BY JIM WYSS

jwyss@miamiherald.com


January 19, 2018 02:48 PM

Updated 8 hours 53 minutes ago
PUERTO MALDONADO, PERU


Speaking in the Peruvian Amazon Friday, Pope Francis said the region’s gold mining industry had become a “false god that demands human sacrifice” because it chews up people and nature and “corrupts everything.”

In back-to-back speeches in this humid river town in southeastern Peru, where illegal gold mining is rampant, Francis touched on some of his most common themes: how avarice and greed are destroying the planet.

Much of the gold mined illegally in Peru and other Latin American countries is exported to Miami and used to make jewelry, electronics and coins, as a Miami Herald investigation this week revealed.

But while the pope condemned the exploitation of poor nations, he also cautioned about those who take environmental protection to such an extreme that their good intentions end up harming traditional communities.

Francis kicked off his first full day in Peru in Puerto Maldonado, the country’s gateway to the Amazon, near the borders of Brazil and Bolivia. His opening event included more than 3,500 indigenous leaders from across the region, wearing ceremonial headdresses, colorful jute wrappings and spare reed skirts.

Francis said that perhaps never before in history had traditional Amazon cultures been so threatened.

In an impassioned speech interrupted by applause, the Argentine pope said traditional communities are being trapped between capitalistic greed and misguided conservation efforts.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Why I Confessed My Sins to a Jesuit Priest


Why I Confessed My Sins to a Jesuit Priest
Even though I’m a Protestant pastor.


Rachel Triska




“Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned. It has been 31 years and I have never practiced confession.”

If I had followed the traditional formula, perhaps that is what I would have said to the priest who took my confession in November of 2014. But I’m a Protestant and we didn’t bother with formalities. I think he and I were both a little surprised to be sitting across from one another.

Last year, I took a five-week sabbatical. Part of that time I spent in silent retreat at Montserrat House, a Jesuit Retreat Center. I needed rest—I knew that. What I did not know was, while there, God would introduce me to the transformative power of private confession.
Feeling forgiveness

On the last night of my retreat, the Jesuits made themselves available to anyone who wanted to practice confession. Father John had led the retreat so I caught up with him, breaking the silence to ask, “Can I come to confession tonight. I’m Protestant.” Father John smiled and answered, “Of course.”
Father John had led the retreat so I caught up with him, breaking the silence to ask, 'Can I come to confession tonight. I’m Protestant.'

I stood in line with 60 other retreatants waiting to make our confession. When it was my turn, I entered a small study and sat in a hardback wooden chair across from Father John. He recognized me as his Protestant retreatant and immediately launched into an explanation of how confession works.

I interrupted.

“Umm, Father, I understand how it works in theory. I wanted to practice confession. I’m Protestant, but can you take my confession?”

“Well, it’s not customary,” he responded, “but it’s not prohibited.”

So there I was, a Protestant pastor sitting across from a Jesuit priest. And I laid my soul bare before him. I confessed that my relationship with the Lord had devolved into a work relationship. I confessed to showing favoritism among members of my congregation. I confessed to struggles with pride and selfishness, to sinning in anger and causing others grief. All this and more I said in halting sentences.

Pope Francis accuses clerical abuse victims of slandering bishop



Pontiff enrages Chilean victims of paedophile priest, saying claims of cover up are ‘all calumny’

about 4 hours ago




Pope Francis ‘has just turned back the clock to the darkest days of this crisis’, says campaigner Anne Barrett Doyle. Photograph: Mario Ruiz/EPA



Pope Francis has accused victims of Chile’s most notorious paedophile of slander, in an astonishing end to a visit meant to help heal the wounds of a sex abuse scandal that has cost the Catholic Church its credibility in the country.

Francis said that until he sees proof that Bishop Juan Barros was complicit in covering up the sex crimes of the Reverend Fernando Karadima, such accusations against the bishop are “all calumny”.

The pope’s remarks drew shock from Chileans and immediate rebuke from victims and their advocates. They noted the accusers were deemed credible enough by the Vatican that it sentenced Karadima to a lifetime of “penance and prayer” for his crimes in 2011.

A Chilean judge also found the victims to be credible, saying that while she had to drop criminal charges against Karadima because too much time had passed, proof of his crimes was not lacking.

“As if I could have taken a selfie or a photo while Karadima abused me and others and Juan Barros stood by watching it all,” tweeted Bishop Barros’s most vocal accuser, Juan Carlos Cruz.
Truly crazy

“These people are truly crazy, and the pontiff talks about atonement to the victims. Nothing has changed, and his plea for forgiveness is empty.”

The Karadima scandal dominated Francis’s visit to Chile and the overall issue of sex abuse and church cover-up was likely to factor into his three-day trip to Peru that began late on Thursday.

Karadima’s victims reported to church authorities as early as 2002 that he would kiss and fondle them in the Santiago parish he ran, but officials refused to believe them.

Only when the victims went public with their accusations in 2010 did the Vatican launch an investigation that led to Karadima being removed from ministry.

Francis had sought to heal the wounds by meeting this week with abuse victims and begging forgiveness for the crimes of church pastors. But on Thursday, he struck a defiant tone when asked by a Chilean journalist about Mr Barros.

“The day they bring me proof against Bishop Barros, I’ll speak,” Francis said. “There is not one shred of proof against him. It’s all calumny. Is that clear?”

Anne Barrett Doyle, of the online database BishopAccountability.org, said it was “sad and wrong” for the pope to discredit the victims since “the burden of proof here rests with the church, not the victims – and especially not with victims whose veracity has already been affirmed.

“He has just turned back the clock to the darkest days of this crisis,” she said in a statement. “Who knows how many victims now will decide to stay hidden, for fear they will not be believed?”
Claims

Indeed, Catholic officials for years accused victims of slandering and attacking the church with their claims. But up until the pope’s words on Thursday, many in the church and Vatican had come to reluctantly acknowledge that victims usually told the truth and that the church for decades had wrongly sought to protect its own.

German Silva, a political scientist at Santiago’s Universidad Mayor, said the pope’s comments were a “tremendous error” that will reverberate in Chile and beyond.

Patricio Navia, political science professor at Diego Portales University in Santiago, said Francis had gone much further than Chilean bishops in acknowledging the sexual abuse scandal, which many Chileans appreciated.

“Then right before leaving, Francis turns around and says: ‘By the way, I don’t think Barros is guilty. Show me some proof’,” Mr Navia said, adding that the comment will probably erase any goodwill the pope had won over the issue.

– PA






Pope Francis shocks Chile protects pedophile Priest accuses sex...

Happy Sabbath


Thursday, January 18, 2018

Trump's 'Fake News' award winners are ...

Why we should welcome people from the countries Trump insulted

White house to shield health workers who refuse services on moral grounds


January 18, 2018





(HealthDay)—Health workers who refuse to perform abortions or sex-change operations on religious or moral grounds will now get more protection from the Trump administration.




Any medical professional who feels his or her rights have been violated can file a complaint with the new conscience and religious freedom division of the office for civil rights at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, The New York Times reported Thursday.

The move, which comes one day before the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., was a priority for anti-abortion groups, according to the Times.

Roger Severino, director of the new civil rights office, told the newspaper that he and his staff would investigate each and every complaint.

The federal government has typically ignored such complaints or treated them with "outright hostility" for years, Severino added.

While supporters of the new office welcomed it as a way to protect the religious rights of medical professionals, critics said the Trump administration is giving health workers a license to discriminate.

Some fear there will be doctors who deny fertility treatments to lesbian couples and pharmacists who refuse to fill prescriptions for certain types of contraceptives, the Times reported.

"Donald Trump's administration is handing out permission slips for hospitals and providers to deny individuals, including women and LGBT patients, access to a full range of health services including lifesaving emergency care," Dawn Huckelbridge, director of the Women's Rights Initiative at American Bridge, told the newspaper.

HHS Acting Secretary Eric Hargan said during a media briefing that the new initiative simply follows an executive order issued last year by President Trump, who said that people of faith would no longer be bullied or silenced.

Conservative groups applauded the move.

"For more than 40 years, federal law has protected the conscience rights of all Americans in the context of health care," the Heritage Foundation said in a statement. "These protections have allowed for a diversity of values in health care and ensured that individuals can work and live according to their moral and religious beliefs.

"This new HHS division will help ensure that health care professionals enjoy the same rights they have had for decades—to not face coercion or discriminatory actions if they decide not to participate in certain procedures because of moral or religious objections."



Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony Honoring Senator Bob Dole




P.S. 

Chaplain of the U.S. Senate Barry Black (SDA) closing prayer;

@ 1:09:15 mins.

open-
Eternal Lord God...

close-
We pray this in your great Name... Amen.


Chaplain Barry Black has forgotten how to pray to Our Heavenly Father, and doing it in JESUS' Name.

International Court Pushes Gay Marriage on 20 Latin American Nations



Michelle Riestra / January 17, 2018





The autonomous Inter-American Court of Human Rights has faced growing resistance from Latin American countries in recent months. (Photo: iStock Photos)



Commentary By




Michelle Riestra



Michelle Riestra serves as legal counsel for ADF International in Washington, D.C., where she engages in legal advocacy at the Organization of American States.




The Inter-American Court of Human Rights called last week for the recognition of same-sex marriage and of proclaimed “gender identity” as a protected category for nondiscrimination under the American Convention on Human Rights.

Although the decision is not binding, 20 countries throughout the Americas have accepted the jurisdiction of the court, and will now be pressured to implement its decision.

The 20 countries are Argentina, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, and Uruguay.

Same-sex marriage is already legal in some of those countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Uruguay, and others recognize civil unions, but still others do not recognize either and will be expected to change their laws.

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The case originated from Costa Rica, which requested an advisory opinion from the court on whether its domestic law violated international law, as it does not facilitate name changes based on gender identity, nor recognize patrimonial rights of same-sex partnerships.

Advisory opinions are not even binding on the country that asked the question, let alone the other 19 nations that have accepted the court’s jurisdiction. However, the court ignored this legal reality and called upon the countries to issue temporary decrees recognizing same-sex marriage until new legislation can be enacted by those countries.

The court has no authority to order such a thing, and the decision goes against the clear wording of the American Convention on Human Rights, as well as several national constitutions. However, the court’s decision is just the latest example of judicial activism, which stretches back more than a decade.

The court is tasked with interpreting the American Convention on Human Rights and operates within the broader Organization of American States framework.

Faced with stubbornly conservative member nations that are slow to follow the legal and cultural liberalism flowing out of Canada, the U.S., and much of Western Europe, the court has taken it upon itself to force its own liberal agenda on a reluctant region.


Financial Times: Swedes being told how to prepare for war



INTERNATIONAL

January 17, 2018 - 10:59 AM EST







Sweden is preparing to send a brochure to millions of its citizens seeking to ready them for the possibility of a conflict, as concerns about Russia's military posture in the region grow.

Financial Times reported Wednesday that the brochure will seek to inform citizens how to cope with crisis in the event of a war, including how to secure necessities, like food and water.

“All of society needs to be prepared for conflict, not just the military. We haven’t been using words such as total defence or high alert for 25-30 years or more. So the knowledge among citizens is very low,” Christina Andersson, who's heading up the project at the Swedish civil contingencies agency, told FT.

A similar document was distributed by the Swedish government in 1961, and they were issued for internal government use until 1991, according to FT.

The brochure, titled "If Crisis or War Comes," is set to be released in May, and comes amid concerns about Russian military overtures in Europe. 

At the same time, support in Sweden for joining NATO has risen in recent years, and whether the country should become a member of the military alliance has been a subject of public debate.