Thursday, March 01, 2012Download All Stories
Appeals court: NYC churches can meet in schools (for now)
NEW YORK (BP) -- New York churches gained a victory in the courts yesterday (Feb. 29) as the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district judge's injunction against the city's enforcement of a ban to keep churches from meeting for worship in public schools."We wouldn't want to go back to the schools and the next month have to go somewhere else. We'd rather find a place with stability."The Second Circuit, though, instructed U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska to act quickly on the case, encouraging her to issue a final decision by mid-June so the matter can be resolved before the next school year.
-- NYC pastor
While churches can continue to meet in New York City schools at least through the end of this school year, some already have moved on to more reliable space.
One Southern Baptist congregation in the city moved all three of its campuses out of public schools, and another congregation is sharing its rented meeting space with other churches in an effort to support the body of Christ in New York.
The Journey Church has three campuses in New York -- an Upper West Side campus in Manhattan, a Village campus in Manhattan and a Queens campus. All three were meeting in public schools before the legal wrangling intensified early this year.
Now the Upper West campus is meeting in the Directors Guild of America New York Theater on 57th Street. The Village congregation has temporarily moved to a United Methodist church for an evening service, and in Queens, Journey has moved to a United Artists movie theater.
"We're paying a little over double the rent we were paying before, so that definitely affects our budget a great deal," Kerrick Thomas, pastor of the Upper West and Village campuses, told Baptist Press.
"We're looking at different meeting location options, and we're looking at the possibility of bringing our two Manhattan campuses together in one central Midtown location and doing all four services in one place," Thomas said.
Journey's leaders hope the city's ban will be overturned but they're taking their time and waiting to see where God wants them, Thomas said.
"It would depend on what kind of stability the decision has with it ..." Read More
Q&A: How NYC churches found new legal life"[We] believe that our free exercise arguments can prevail."NEW YORK (BP) -- If you want to understand how New York City churches won a last-ditch lawsuit in February after losing multiple rounds just months earlier, pull out a copy of the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment. Read More
-- Jordan Lorence
Iran pastor: U.S. House calls for his releaseWASHINGTON (BP) -- Adding pressure to Iranian officials, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed a resolution calling for the immediate release of Iranian pastor Yousef Nadarkhani, who could be executed any day for his Christian faith. Read More
Senate affirms contraceptive/abortion mandate
WASHINGTON (BP) -- The U.S. Senate has dealt a setback to the effort to protect religious freedom and conscience rights in the Obama administration's controversial contraceptive/abortion mandate. Read More
Md. gay 'marriage' bill signed, but not legal yet
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (BP) -- Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley signed a bill into law Thursday that would legalize gay "marriage" in the state beginning in January 2013, but churches already are mobilizing to reverse it at the ballot. Read More
'Missionary kids' aid hospital's makeoverSANYATI, Zimbabwe (BGR) -- Joining in the "extreme makeover" of Sanyati Baptist Hospital in Zimbabwe, a crew of nine youth, ages 11-18, proved up to the task.
In four days, the "missionary kids," whose parents serve in nearby Botswana and South Africa, offloaded 15,000 pounds of roofing metal from a truck and assembled 15,000 screws ... Read More
FIRST-PERSON: The debate is about conscience, not contraceptives
Columnist Richard Land says the Founding Fathers would be aghast at what the Obama administration's contraceptive/abortion mandate is set to do: fining individuals and religious organizations for following their religious convictions. Read More
BIBLE STUDY: Sunday, March 1, 2012
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) -- This Bible study appears in Baptist Press each week in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curriculum and additional resources for all age groups.
This week's Bible study is adapted from the Bible Studies for Life curriculum.
Bible Passages: Psalms 42 & 43
Discussion Question: The last time you faced a trial, did you run to God o... Read More