Pastor's plan to raise the Christian flagSHELBY, N.C. (BP) -- North Carolina pastor Rit Varriale wants to see churches fly the Christian flag above the American flag as a biblical statement, reversing flag etiquette that calls for the American flag to be flown in the prominent position.
Varriale, as senior pastor of Elizabeth Baptist Church in Shelby, N.C., said the church installed its first-ever flagpole in order to raise the two flags in a special ceremony after morning worship on Sunday (July 5) in which the Christian flag was raised in the higher position -- which prompted interviews by Charlotte-area NBC, CBS and Fox affiliates. Read More
Moore: Court ruling sets Christian 'distinctiveness'Christians "can be Americans best when we're not Americans first." -- Russell MooreWASHINGTON (BP) -- The U.S. Supreme Court's legalization of same-sex marriage has given clarity to Christians of their "distinctiveness" in American life, Southern Baptist ethicist Russell Moore told an audience in the country's capital.
As a guest for the July 1 edition of Politico's Playbook Breakfast, Moore told interviewer Mike Allen he believes Christians "can be Americans best when we're not Americans first, when we have a sense of understanding of who we are in terms of our distinctiveness. Now that time is here." Read More
Boko Haram attacks claim hundreds in Nigeria
JOS, Nigeria (BP) -- Twin explosions rocked the Nigerian city of Jos and left dozens dead or severely injured, according to the BBC and Associated Press.
The attacks have been tied to the terrorist group Boko Haram, who had also been connected to a string of terrorist attacks throughout Nigeria in which as many as 300 people were killed earlier in the week. Read More
James Dunn, soul freedom 'firebrand,' dies at 83WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (BP) -- James Dunn, executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs from 1981-99, died Saturday, July 4, in Winston-Salem, N.C. He was 83.
Dunn led the church-state organization, now called Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, during turbulent years in its relationship with the Southern Baptist Convention. Disagreements between SBC leaders and the BJC over public policy and other issues led to the convention's defunding of the organization over a two-year span at the 1990 and '91 SBC annual meetings. Read More
NAMB fund to assist burned black churchesThe North American Mission Board has established a fund to help African American churches that have been damaged or destroyed by fire in the past two weeks.
Fires at seven black churches have fueled discussions of racial hatred, as the first occurred within a week of the June 17 massacre of nine black Christians by a 21-year-old white supremacist at a Charleston church. Read More
Veterans befriend pastor after losing his fatherWhen Tommy Kelly was 23, his life was turned upside down when his father died from a heart attack.
A faithful Christian, his father had been a deacon and church treasurer and was the local magistrate. Kelly got a kick from hearing local lawyers, who had far more education than his father, refer to him as “judge.”
And Thomas H. Kelly Sr. was patriotic, having served in the Army right after the Korean War. Read More
WWII POW's pitch opens K.C. Royals' seasonDale Mitchell took the mound in front of 40,085 roaring fans for the defending American League Champion Kansas City Royals' home opener against the Chicago White Sox. His cap pulled low, Mitchell cocked his arm and let his pitch fly.
At age 90, Mitchell had the honor of throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.
A former high school second baseman, Mitchell and a grandson practiced the pitch on Easter and the next day it was Royals' star third baseman Mike Moustakas on the receiving end. Read More