Zprávy HCJB 13.2.2008

 Představitelé baptistů naléhají na širší misijní zapojení černých Američanů
   Tajemník Světového sdružení baptistů (BWA) Neville Callam vyzval sbory, jejichž členy jsou černí američtí baptisté, aby se více angažovaly v misiích BWA. „Nenechme se mýlit. Černých amerických baptistů je naléhavě třeba, aby … pomohli všem baptistům lépe uchopit jejich roli při uskutečňování Boží misie ve světě,“ řekl Callam na Zimním setkání vedoucích pracovníků Národního sdružení amerických baptistů, které se uskutečnilo ve středu 30. ledna v Atlantě ve státě Georgia. Černí Američané mají nezastupitelnou roli ve světové rodině baptistů, řekl Callam. „Když se černí američtí baptisté zabývají theologií, mohou ji utvářet ve světle osvobození z otroctví, které sami jako lidé prožili,“ vysvětluje Callam. „Význam tohoto prvku lze jen stěží docenit.“ Callam dodal, že „tento přístup je vždy na místě, protože většina lidí na Zemi žije v situaci, kdy si toužebně přeje vysvobození z pout pohlaví, rasy, společenské třídy nebo jiné svazující skutečnosti.“ Zdroj: Baptist World Alliance
 Všechny zprávy v angličtině

Sources: Crisis News Network, BosNewsLife, Associated Press, Monsters and Critics
Fighting in the African nation of Chad has disrupted the operations of several Christian mission organizations, including Wycliffe Bible Translators (WBT) and World Vision.

Rebel forces moved on the capital city of N’Djamena in the early-morning hours of Saturday, Feb. 2, in an attempt to usurp power from Chadian President Idriss Deby. Intense fighting followed throughout the weekend, causing many organizations, including WBT to implement evacuation procedures.

WBT confirmed that its staff members stationed in N’Djamena were safely airlifted to Libreville, Gabon, from where they will travel on to Cameroon. WBT reported that personnel in other areas of Chad continue to report calm in their locations. World Vision, which has some 250 staff members in country, said the African nation could turn “from a political crisis to a humanitarian disaster if fighting does not stop soon.”

French military officers reported fighting between rebels and government troops in central Chad as recently as Friday, Feb 8. Nonetheless, the capital’s airport was being reopened, a sign the government believes normalcy is returning. Security officials at the airport said the first commercial passenger flight was expected Tuesday, Feb. 12, an Air France plane.

* HCJB Global Voice worked with local partner Voice of Hope to establish an FM station in N’djamena in 2004. The mission also assisted the Church of the Lutheran Brethren with a recording studio in Gauna Gaya.


Sources: Christian Newswire, Evangelical News, Assist News Service
A growing number of U.S. residents are using their time off to help others. “Vacations with a purpose” is a growing trend where families and individuals use their vacation time to go on missions trips around the world. An estimated 1.6 million American Christians are contributing $6 million in labor annually as they travel to remote areas of the world on short-term mission trips. Roger Peterson, president of Short Term Evangelical Missions International, estimates that 50,000 U.S. churches are sending members out on mission trips each year. Wycliffe Associates -- founded in 1967 to support Bible translators -- is devoting $10 million a year in recruiting, training and sending volunteers overseas to assist missionaries. “Part of our investment in short-term missions is the completion of our new Volunteer Mobilization Center, a 16,000-square-foot facility in Orlando, Fla., that will be used to mobilize thousands of volunteers heading out on short-term missions,” said Bruce Smith, president and chief executive officer of Wycliffe Associates. No exact figures exist on the increase in “volunteer vacations,” but evidence shows that the popularity of such trips is skyrocketing, particularly among baby boomers and empty nesters.


Source: Baptist World Alliance
Baptist World Alliance (BWA) General Secretary Neville Callam called on churches affiliated with the African American Baptists to become more engaged in the mission of the BWA. “Let us make no mistake about it: an urgent need exists for African American Baptists … to contribute to Baptists’ emerging understanding of their role in the realization of God’s mission in the world,” said Callam, who spoke during the Joint Winter Board Meeting of the National Baptist Conventions in America on Wednesday, Jan. 30, in Atlanta, Ga. African Americans have a unique role to play within the global family of Baptists, Callam said. “When African American Baptists engage theologically, they are able to do so from the perspective of liberation, about which they can speak experientially,” he explained. “The importance of this fact is hard to overstate.” Callam added that this is “the sort of contribution that you are uniquely prepared to place on the table [because] most people on this planet, including Baptists, are living in situations in which they yearn for liberation from bondage based on gender, race, class and other such factors.”


Source: OneNewsNow
Authorities in Sweden have voted to ban pornography from prisons in that country. The ban will give officials at correctional facilities the power to prohibit certain pornography and other reading materials that is deemed “unbeneficial” for the prisoner. The proposed ban will take effect on April 1. The debate came after the parliament received complaints from correctional authorities who previously had little power in regulating material for prisoners.

In Stockholm, a spokesperson from the Christian Democrat party reportedly said it would not be reasonable to think a prisoner serving time for sex crimes should be given access to pornography. In contrast, the Social Democrat party opposed the proposal, arguing its goes against fundamental human rights.

Pat Trueman of the Alliance Defense Fund in Arizona says even though Sweden is known as a liberal country, officials there recognize the problem pornography poses to prisoners. “What they’re seeing, apparently, is the harmful effects that everyone else in the world can see from pornography,” he explained. “There’s no positive effect -- and so the Swedish parliament decided that despite their liberal views, they had to stop the harm from pornography.” Trueman argues that government officials in the U.S. should follow Sweden’s lead.


Sources: Evangelical News, Baptist Press
Bob Fu, a leading advocate for the persecuted church in China, received a Southern Baptist religious freedom award during a ceremony at the Library of Congress Feb. 7. Richard Land, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, presented Fu with the 2007 John Leland Religious Liberty Award. A native of China, Fu founded the China Aid Association after he and his family fled to the United States in 1996. China Aid monitors and reports on religious persecution by the Chinese government, especially of the unregistered church, which consists of from 60 to 80 million adherents. Fu’s organization also seeks to aid persecuted believers in the world’s most populous country. In his speech after receiving the award, he said, “My hope is that the Chinese government will recognize that Christianity and other true peaceful religious groups do not need to be controlled and are not a threat to the government but, rather, are one of the needed building blocks for stability and can provide much-needed help for promoting non-violence during this time of transition in China’s history.”

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