ReligionNewsBlog.com, Jan. 12, 2005 [Interfaith] Rabbis and imams unite against religious extremism http://religionnewsblog.com/9897/Rabbis-and-imams A few
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, Jan 12, 2005
ReligionNewsBlog.com, Jan. 12, 2005
[Interfaith] Rabbis and imams unite against religious extremism http://religionnewsblog.com/9897/Rabbis-and-imams
A few minutes before Europe observed three minutes of silence last
Wednesday in memory of the tsunami victims, Jewish and Muslim clergy
who had convened at Egmont Palace decided to join them. Two days
earlier, the clergy had come together to seek means of greater
involvement for religion in quietening the bloody Israeli-Palestinian
[Fraud] Spain police crack witchcraft con http://religionnewsblog.com/9896/witchcraft-con
Police in Spain have arrested seven Brazilians suspected of cheating
people out of thousands of euros by claiming to be clairvoyants and
[Islam] Turkish imams' EU peace move http://religionnewsblog.com/9895/Turkish-imams-peace-move
More than 1,000 moderate clerics have been dispatched to European
countries by Turkey, the only Muslim candidate member of the EU, in a
drive to promote modern and peaceful interpretations of Islam.
[Abraham Kennard] Preacher calls charges 'theory' as trial opens http://religionnewsblog.com/9894/Abraham-Kennard
"It's not a law against riding in a Cadillac if you don't want to ride
in a Volkswagen," said Abraham Kennard in his opening remarks as he
began defending himself against 132 criminal counts brought against him
by the United States government.
The 46-year-old charismatic preacher is charged with swindling more
than 1,600 churches out of more than $8.7 million. The criminal charges
include mail fraud, income tax evasion and money laundering.
In a 91-count indictment, the government alleges that Kennard headed up
a multi-million-dollar advance-fee fraud scheme from May 2001 to
October 2002 through the sale of memberships in the Network
International Investment Corporation’s “Church Funding Project.”
[Religion, General] Scientologists, Jews, Quakers, flock to give
tsunami aid http://religionnewsblog.com/9891/tsunami-aid
The Church of Scientology is applying its mind-over-matter healing
techniques to injured tsunami survivors in Aceh. Jews and Quakers are
sending humanitarian aid. Radical Islamic groups are providing
Scores of religious and humanitarian groups have, quite literally,
pitched their tents in Indonesia's Aceh, after the province of 4
million people was pulverised by the strongest quake in 40 years and
[Free Speech] Nation's eyes on Christian protesters http://religionnewsblog.com/9890/Michael-Marcavage
Four members of a local Christian group, Repent America, are facing
felony charges in connection with their behavior in the fall during the
gay and lesbian community's annual Outfest celebration in Center City.
For allegedly trying to disrupt the event with their
bullhorn-amplified, Scripture-based denunciations of homosexuality,
they have been accused of criminal conspiracy, incitement to riot, and
violating the state's law against hate crimes.
Instead, his life ended Saturday when he shot himself in the head hours
after allegedly stabbing Angela Smith to death in Tucson.
Rodriguez left the Family International in 2000 but was still haunted
by what he experienced growing up in its rigid structure, said Celeste
Jones, a friend who also had left the Family and spoke to him the day
before he took his and Smith's lives.
The scientists will apply a chilli-based gel to the skin of volunteers
and ask them to try different strategies to lessen the burning
sensation, including asking people with strong religious beliefs to
draw on their faith to cope with the pain.
The experiment is one in a series that sees scientists join forces with
philosophers, theologians and brain surgeons to tackle some of the most
profound questions of the human condition: what is the nature of
consciousness and how do religious beliefs manifest themselves in our
[Islam] 14 Islamic Extremists Arrested in Germany http://religionnewsblog.com/9887/Islamic-Extremists-Arrested
Police arrested 14 people during raids of apartments and mosques in
five German states Wednesday in a crackdown on an Islamic extremist
organization suspected of aiding terrorists, authorities said.
[Children of God] Stabber's friends blame decades of abuse in sex cult http://religionnewsblog.com/9886/Richard-Rodriguez
A man who police say committed a murder-suicide last weekend was acting
in anger against a woman he claimed sexually abused him for decades as
part of a sex cult, his friends said Tuesday.
Richard P. Rodriguez, 29, told family members he killed his former
nanny, Angela M. Smith, 51, in Tucson before shooting himself in
Blythe, Calif. Police said Rodriguez stabbed Smith to death.
The Tucson Police Department was not investigating Smith for any crime,
said Officer Michelle Pickrom. But Rodriguez lived all over the world
with a religious sect called The Family, and it wasn't known Tuesday
whether the alleged abuse was ever reported in any of those locations.
[Vampirism] Vampirism linked to suspect http://religionnewsblog.com/9884/Vampirism
A how-to book for vampires. Another book titled "The Satanic Rituals, A
Companion to the Satanic Bible." Two leather masks. Three thongs. An
opened box of sterile scalpel blades.
Six days after finding a 13-year-old Northampton County runaway in
Charles Matthew Blair's Newport News home on New Year's Day, police
seized more than 42 items from his home - ranging from occult books to
leather sex toys - according to court documents filed Monday.
[USA] U.S. to Free Five Guantanamo Inmates http://religionnewsblog.com/9883/US-to-Free-Five-Guantanamo-Inmates
The United States has agreed to release the four remaining British
citizens who have been held as suspected terrorists without charge or
trial at Guantanamo Bay for more than two years, Foreign Secretary Jack
Straw told the House of Commons Tuesday.
[Opus Dei] Controversial Catholic group is given care of parish church http://religionnewsblog.com/9881/Opus-Dei
Opus Dei, the conservative Roman Catholic organisation that counts Ruth
Kelly, the Education Secretary, among its members, has been given its
first parish in Britain since it was founded in 1928.
Cardinal Cormac Murphy- O’Connor, the Archbishop of Westminster, is to
hand over pastoral care of St Thomas More church, Swiss Cottage, to
Father Gerard Sheehan, an Opus Dei priest.
[Children of God] Murder-suicide case in desert evangelical sex cult http://religionnewsblog.com/9880/Richard-Rodriguez
Police in Arizona and California said they are investigating an
apparent murder-suicide involving the son of Maria David, the prophet
and spiritual leader of the Family, an international evangelical sex
cult previously known as the Children of God.
Abraham Kennard, 46, told his attorney, Michael Trost, that he no
longer required his services and notified federal Judge Harold Murphy
of the same only minutes before jury selection was to begin.
[Polygamy] Source: Jeffs dedicates FLDS temple site at YFZ Ranch http://religionnewsblog.com/9879/Warren-Jeffs-dedicates-FLDS-temple-site
Jon Krakauer came to Eldorado last weekend, not to celebrate the new
year, but to be nearby the YFZ Ranch where Prophet Warren Jeffs and the
Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ are said to be building a temple.
Of particular interest to Krakauer was a recent spate of rumors that
Jeffs was predicting the end the world and that he had ordered his
followers in Utah, Arizona and Canada to stay in their homes throughout
[Islam] In Pakistan's tribal areas, women throw off the Hijab http://religionnewsblog.com/9878/Hijab
When [Taliban] the regime was toppled in late 2001 it was partly billed
as a victory for Afghan women, who could finally cast off the
restrictive garments and show their faces to the world.
Now with the spread of education and exposure to the media, observers
have also detected a sharp decline in the numbers of Pakistanis
choosing to wear it in the last few years.
[Taize] Taize makes worship palpable http://religionnewsblog.com/9877/Taize-worship
I spoke not long ago with the Rev. George W. Westlake Jr. of Kansas
City, pastor of a large Assembly of God Church in which the worship
style is expressive of the active presence of God. He explained why he
thought that worship experience is so attractive to people: “The
previous generations you could reach with apologetics. You can't do
that with this generation. The newer generation wants an experience of
“Apologetics” is a term referring to the rational defense and
explanation of theological doctrine. It's what mainline Christians
often — but not always — get in sermons. And it has an honored place in
most religions because of the need to explain belief and practices in a
But Westlake is right that apologetics is not enough. My colleague's
experience at the Taize service was evidence of the desire many of us
have to feel the divine in a palpable way, a way that words cannot
[Gentle Wind Project] Judge: Web site can't be sued for 'cult' comment http://religionnewsblog.com/9876/Gentle-Wind-Project
The operator of a Web site based in New Jersey should be dismissed from
a lawsuit that he faced for publishing articles comparing the
Kittery-based Gentle Wind Project to a "mind-control cult," a U.S.
Magistrate judge ruled Monday.
Judge David Cohen wrote that a court in Maine has no jurisdiction over
Rick A. Ross and his Institute for the Study of Destructive Cults,
Controversial Groups and Movements.
Cohen said that because Ross has no connection to Maine, he cannot be
sued here for alleged defamation.
[Ananda] East meets West: A US guru in India http://religionnewsblog.com/9874/Swami-Kriyananda
It is hard to miss the reversal of roles between the East and the West,
when you meet J. Donald Walter a.k.a. Swami Kriyananda, the 78-year-old
yogi and guru from the US.
At a time when religion equals fundamentalism and "men of god"
increasingly come under the scrutiny of law in this land of
spiritualism, Kriyananda shifted to Delhi two years ago from the US to
spread the word of his guru — Paramhansa Yogananda.
The latter was, perhaps, India's first spiritual ambassador to the US,
who settled in the US way back in 1920.
The high court on Monday declined to hear the state's appeal of a lower
court ruling siding with the Klan, meaning that picking up litter along
Missouri 21 heading into Potosi can remain the responsibility of the
In 2001, the court did the same thing in a case relating to another
stretch of highway in Missouri, I-55 south of St. Louis — now known as
the Rosa Parks Memorial Highway in honor of the civil rights heroine.
Anton and Janet Hein-Hudson
ApologeticsIndex.org: Research resources on religions, cults, sects,
and related issues
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