ReligionNewsBlog.com, Sep. 24 - 25, 2003
- ReligionNewsBlog.com, Sep. 24 - 25, 2003
Thu, Sep. 25, 2003
[Hate Groups] Former Aryan Nations member offers new message
Former Aryan Nations recruiter Floyd Cochran spoke to an auditorium filled with
students at E.L. Meyers High School Wednesday. Sponsored by B'nai B'rith Lodge
and The Diversity Institute, Dallas, Cochran's visit was designed to raise a red
flag of awareness for students who could find themselves targets in the neo-nazi
[Amina Lawal] Nigerian Mother Wins Appeal Against Stoning Death
A Nigerian court on Thursday spared a woman from being stoned to death by
overturning an Islamic court's conviction for adultery, easing pressure on the
government of President Olusegun Obasanjo. Western governments led by the
European Union had urged Obasanjo to intervene in the case involving Amina Lawal
who was convicted in March 2002 after having a baby outside wedlock.
[Religious Intolerance] EEOC suits claim bias at 3 Valley businesses
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has sued three prominent Valley
businesses, alleging religious discrimination against Mormon, non-Mormon and
Jehovah's Witness workers.
[Aum Shinrikyo] Life sentence for AUM cultist over sarin upheld
The Tokyo High Court on Thursday upheld a lower court ruling that sentenced a
senior AUM Shinrikyo cultist to life in prison for his involvement in the 1994
sarin gas attack in Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture, that killed seven people and
injured many others. Prosecutors had demanded the death penalty for Noboru
Nakamura, 36, and appealed the life sentence issued by the Tokyo District Court
in May 2001, along with Nakamura.
[Derek Prince] Bible teacher Derek Prince dies at 88
Internationally recognized Bible teacher and author Derek Prince died last night
in Jerusalem at the age of 88.
[Catholic Church] Vatican May Limit Girls' Role in Mass
Under new rules being drafted by the Vatican to crack down on "abuses" in the
Roman Catholic Mass, altar boys will be given preference over altar girls, who
should serve during the rites only in special cases, Vatican officials said
[Neil and Christy Edgar] Father begins testimony in Edgar murder trial
Neil Edgar Sr. took the stand today as the defense began its case in the
child-abuse murder trial of Edgar and family babysitter Chasity Boyd. His wife,
Christy Edgar, pleaded guilty last week to charges of felony first-degree murder
in the death of their son, 9-year-old Brian Edgar. He died Dec. 30, 2002, after
being encased in duct tape "like a mummy" with only his nose uncovered.
[Mata Amritanandamayi Devi] Devotees flock to hug Indian guru
Thousands of devotees are flocking to Cochin in southern India for spiritual
fulfilment in the arms of India's "hugging saint". The followers hope to add to
the 30 million hugs given out over 30 years by religious leader Mata
Amritanandamayi. Ms Amritanandamayi - known to her followers as Amma - began a
four-day celebration on Wednesday to mark her 50th birthday on Saturday.
[Mata Amritanandamayi Devi] Grandeur marks Ammas birthday bash
Amritavarsham-50, the mega four-day celebrations commemorating the 50th birthday
of Mata Amritanandamayi, got off to a spectacular start here today. The setting
could not have been better as it was a mini UN itself with representatives from
[Mata Amritanandamayi Devi] Mata Amritanandamayi's 50th birthday today
More than half a million people from 191 countries will participate in Mata
Amritanandamayi's 50th birthday celebrations, which begin in Kochi on Wednesday.
[Mata Amritanandamayi Devi] Hugging Indian Guru Has Legions of Backers
California businessman Stephen Parr has traveled a long way for a hug. Parr is
one of thousands of people flocking to a sports stadium in southern India this
week seeking spiritual fulfillment in the arms of religious leader Mata
Amritanandamayi, a Hindu woman who hugs her devotees. Her followers claim she
has given 30 million hugs in 30 years.
[Harmony Worship Center Church] Knox family fears son is part of a cult
The Hupps say Harmony Church, which meets in a Tulsa, Oklahoma home forever
changed their son. The church recruited members from Oral Roberts University,
without the school's approval, and once the university found out, administrators
kicked them off campus. This summer, police in Tulsa arrested the church's
pastors, Janice and Robert Turner, a married couple. Investigators say a church
member confessed to them they had sexually abused a child. But instead of
reporting that abuse to police, like the law requires, detectives say the
Turners severely beat that member, and others who disobeyed them, in religious
ceremonies they call "disciplining the flesh." Detectives call Harmony Church a
Wed, Sep. 24, 2003
[The Body] Sect mother to stand trial in death of son
A mother who allegedly watched her infant son starve to death because of a
religious prophecy was ordered Wednesday to stand trial on a second-degree
murder charge after psychiatrists determined she was competent to face the
ordeal of a trial. Superior Court Judge Elizabeth Donovan ruled Karen Robidoux
is competent to stand trial in the 1999 death of her 11-month-old son Samuel,
according to prosecutors.
[Mormon Church] SLC asks court to trim plaza suit
Legal maneuvers in the American Civil Liberties Union suit over the Main Street
Plaza continued Tuesday. Latest in the legal tit for tat: Lawyers for Salt Lake
City filed a memorandum in U.S. District Court reiterating their desire for
federal Judge Dale A. Kimball to dismiss the ACLU's complaint against the city,
and Mayor Rocky Anderson as a defendant.
[USA] Reno blasts Patriot Act
Reno, at Kansas University to speak to law students, meet with faculty and speak
at the Lied Center, warned that fear of terrorism was no excuse for several of
the measures taken by the Bush administration, including the detention of U.S.
citizens after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the East Coast. [...] She said she
only had regrets about the way she handled Waco in 1993. If she had known David
Koresh would have ordered fires set that killed many of the Branch Davidian
followers, she wouldn't have ordered federal agents to invade the cult's
compound. "Waco is the bitterest disappointment I had," she said. "I went
through every possible alternative. I read all that Koresh had written, what he
threatened to do. We'll never know what the right answer was, because if I had
not done what I did, he might well have two weeks after that with no provocation
whatsoever done practically the same thing, and we would have been blamed for
not taking action."
[Cults] Expert will address cults on campus
"I was blown away by presentations by former cult members who talked about their
experiences," [Ron] Loomis said. "It led me to studying more and learning more
about cults; led to me decide to educate others against them." Loomis said
cults are especially active in recruitment on college campuses, where many new
students find themselves alone, unsure and looking for answers. "Most of the
cults that are active on campus look like mainstream born-again Christian
organizations," Loomis said. "Most students would not view them as cults or as
being dangerous to them."
[Kenneth Hagin Sr.] Rev. Kenneth Hagin funeral service Wednesday
About 15,000 people are expected to attend services for Hagin. He died Friday at
the age of 86. Hagin moved here from Texas in 1966 and founded Rhema Bible
Training Center in 1974.
[Neil and Christy Edgar] Testimony: Christy Edgar said God directed punishment
It was God who came to Christy Edgar and gave her a new way to discipline
children, she told members of her Kansas City, Kan., church. She should tie
them up. That was the testimony today of former church member Chauntel
Williams, who also told Johnson County District Court jurors that she had seen
three of Edgar's children bound.
[Vampirism] Vampire-cult trial denied
Vampire-cult leader Rod Ferrell, who pleaded guilty in the 1996 slayings of a
Eustis couple, on Tuesday was denied his request for a new trial.
[Unification Church] Bad Moon on the rise
Overcoming his church's bizarre reputation and his own criminal record, the Rev.
Sun Myung Moon has cemented ties with the Bush administration -- and gained
government funding for his closest disciples.
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