Love Life group seeks more prayer, fewer abortions
Univ. of Iowa reinstates religious groups for now
Military chaplain plays historic role; comforts families
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Kelleys' 'Great Dakota Adventure' more than vacationNEW ORLEANS (BP) -- The Dakota Badlands, a barren stretch of land once described as "a place with a long list of secrets," doesn't typically receive top billing as a vacation destination.
But for Chuck Kelley, president of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and his wife Rhonda, a trek across North and South Dakota is one they wished they had taken sooner.
Taking their cue from the NOBTS centennial challenge to go on a mission trip this year, the Kelleys decided on a mission trip/vacation this summer, encouraging church planters with a listening ear alongside Chuck Kelley's goal to visit all 50 U.S. states. The trip allowed him to visit states 49 and 50.
Dubbing it the "Great Dakota Adventure," the Kelleys set out to find and encourage church planters and their wives serving in out-of-the-way places. Over a meal at each stop, the Kelleys heard stories of blessing and God's faithfulness and of trial and difficulty as church planters told of what God is doing in the Dakotas. Read More
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Greg Laurie on censored ad: 'Hold the Bible high'ANAHEIM, Calif. (BP) -- After promotional materials for the SoCal Harvest crusade were taken down from two Southern California malls because they showed Pastor Greg Laurie holding a Bible, Laurie is asking attendees of the event to hold up their Bibles in a show of support for God's Word.
"Apparently, in our intolerant culture, we no longer can display the Bible in public," Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, Calif., wrote in an Aug. 17 op-ed for the Los Angeles Times. "The art in question was a tribute to my hero and mentor, the late Rev. Billy Graham, who often lifted the Bible high over his head as he preached to stadiums full of people. We hold the Bible high, just like Billy did, because it has changed our lives. Read More
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Argentina Senate thwarts abortion rights effortWASHINGTON (BP) -- The Argentine Senate's refusal to legalize abortion in that South American country has dealt a setback for the time being to the effort by activists to expand the right to the lethal procedure internationally.
The Senate defeated in a 38-31 vote Aug. 9 a bill that would have permitted elective abortions during the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. Argentina currently prohibits abortions, although it allows exceptions when the life or health of the mother is threatened or the pregnancy is the result of rape. Argentina's Chamber of Deputies had approved the legislation in a 129-125 vote in June. Read More
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Vision team to help implement SBCAL recommendationsMCDONOUGH, Ga. (BP) -- An 11-member vision team will study ways to help Southern Baptist state associations implement recommended changes including a new title and system-wide professional proficiencies for directors of missions (DOMs).
The Southern Baptist Conference of Associational Leaders (SBCAL) vision team will research ways to help state associations implement a study team's recommendations that were adopted during the SBCAL annual meeting in June. The new vision team will report its findings to the SBCAL executive team in advance of the 2019 SBCAL annual meeting in Birmingham, Ala., June 9-10.
Included in SBCAL-adopted recommendations are the use of the title "associational mission strategist" for all directors of missions and the adoption of certain foundational, relational and strategic proficiencies for the job description. Read More
Pastor gets first jolt from church's defibrillatorWESTWOOD, Ky. (BP) -- Two years ago pastor Mike Rice was approached by two women members of the church he leads about placing a defibrillator in the building.
"We had a senior deacon who had some episodes," Rice said. "But I sure never knew I'd be the first one to need it."
Two months after his heart stopped while he was behind the pulpit, the 66-year-old pastor was preaching again on Sunday morning, Aug. 12. Read More
Granola bars sensitize students to NYC's vulnerableNEW YORK (BP) -- It all started with two granola bars and a challenge, and before the day was over, a group of high school students saw the world's human trafficking problem from a whole different perspective.
The concept was simple.
The students, from metro Dallas, were spending the day in New York City learning how to combat human trafficking when Raleigh Sadler issued a challenge.
"Go buy a box of granola bars, and when you approach someone who seems isolated, have two of them in your hand," said Sadler, executive director of the Let My People Go ministry. "Then offer them one of the bars and eat yours too -- share that simple meal with them." Read More
Greear: Catholic abuse report requires 'bold steps'HARRISBURG, Pa. (BP) -- A Pennsylvania grand jury's report alleging unprecedented levels of sexual abuse and cover-up by Roman Catholic clergy has drawn reaction from Southern Baptists.
Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear said Southern Baptists should respond to the report by taking all steps necessary to eradicate sexual abuse "from within our community." Commentators from two SBC seminaries noted both the unique ways Roman Catholic doctrine may have contributed to the alleged offenses and the ways evangelical Protestants likewise have shamed themselves through sexual misconduct. Read More