Zprávy HCJB 27.2.2008

 Koncert v severní Koreji kritizován obránci lidských práv
   Koncert Newyorské filharmonie v Pchongjangu ve čtvrtek 26. února je označován jako „průlomový,“ ale současně je i kritizován. Koncert byl zahájen státními hymnami severní Koreje a USA a pokračoval Dvořákovou novosvětskou symfonií. Filharmonici třikrát přidávali a opouštěli pódium v slzách. Je to první větší kulturní výměna od korejské války. Ale na prezidenta Open Doors USA Carla Moellera to nezapůsobilo. „Je tragédií, že miliony severokorejců hladoví, stát je světovým pronásledovatelem křesťanů číslo 1 a své vlastní občany nutí žít hrozným životem. Myslím, že je ostudou newyorské filharmonie, že tu hrála a přitom nic z toho nebylo řečeno,“ řekl Moeller. Snad mají newyorští filharmonici pocit, že tento druh dialogu s asijským diktátorem je přiměřený, ale každý by se byl zhrozil udělat něco podobného v případě německého nacistického režimu Adolfa Hitlera.“ Odhaduje se, že v severokorejských vězeňských pracovních táborech je pro svou víru asi 200 000 křesťanů, píše Open Doors. Zdroj: Mission Network News
 Všechny zprávy v angličtině

Source: Mission Network News
A concert in Pyongyang, North Korea, by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra Tuesday, Feb. 26, is being called “unprecedented,” but it’s also being met with some criticism. The orchestra opened with “The Star-Spangled Banner” as well as playing North Korea’s national anthem and continued through three encores. Musicians left the stage in tears. This is the first time any major cultural exchange has taken place since the Korean conflict. However, Open Doors USA President Carl Moeller wasn’t impressed. “The tragedy is that tens of millions of North Koreans are starving [and the country is the] No. 1 persecutor of Christians in the world and subjects its very own people to this horrible state of life. I think it’s a sham that New York Philharmonic played there and none of this was ever brought up.” Moeller said. “Somehow the New York Philharmonic Orchestra feels like this type of dialogue is appropriate with a dictator from Asia, but everyone would recoil with horror if we had done the same thing with Adolph Hitler’s regime in Nazi Germany.” An estimated 200,000 Christians are in North Korean prison labor camps because of their faith in Christ, Open Doors reported.


Source: New Tribes Missions
A new government school for adult education may change the face of ministry among Bolivia’s Simba people. The 7,000 Simba people of southern Bolivia live in more than 60 isolated communities. “The work of evangelizing the Simbas is hindered because of the difficulty of traveling into the isolated communities in which they live,” wrote missionary Jack Russell. Simba believers and missionaries have taken buses to villages, have hiked into remote valleys and recorded Bible teaching for radio programs. Now Bolivia’s Department of Education is considering locating a school for adult education in the village where the missionaries live and where the main Simba church is. “If so, then Simba people from many different villages would be staying here every other month to study,” Russell wrote. “I am excited about this because many of them would be attending church while here and would be hearing the gospel in their own language. For many of them it would be the first time hearing it.” Russell added that two or three of the Simba believers will be in charge of the teaching.

* HCJB Global Voice has worked with local radio partners to plant local AM and FM stations in the Bolivian cities of Santa Cruz, Tarija and Tupiza. Four stations with eight transmitters in four cities (La Paz, Caranavi, Santa Cruz and Sucre) are also affiliated with the ALAS, the ministry’s Latin American satellite radio network that makes Spanish programs available to local stations 24 hours a day.


Source: BosNewsLife
Christian missionaries in Jordan faced more uncertainty as the Jordanian government acknowledged for the first time that it has begun expelling foreign Christians for preaching and carrying out missionary activities. On Thursday, Feb. 21, Jordan confirmed reports initiated last year that Christian missionaries and preachers, including several Egyptians and Iraqis, have been expelled. Nasser Judeh, minister of state for information and communication affairs, said preachers came to Jordan under the “pretext of charitable and voluntary activities, but they have violated the law by undertaking preaching activities and were expelled.” So far a spokesman cited only technical reasons for the deportations, but Judeh said spreading Christianity would not be tolerated in this predominantly Muslim nation. He added that under Jordanian law, the government must sanction preaching and any religious activity, whether Christian or Muslim. Judeh did not say how many people have been expelled, but Christian sources estimate that Jordanian authorities deported and refused residence permits to at least 27 expatriate Christians from the U.S., South Korea, Egypt, Sudan and Iraq for belonging to evangelical groups.


Source: Assist News Service
Raul Castro, 76, has been unanimously selected leader of Cuba’s National Assembly after his brother, Fidel Castro, stepped down after nearly half a century in charge. Raul has in effect been president since Fidel had major surgery in July 2006. He was the only nominee in a vote seen as a formality. U.S. officials see Raul’s appointment as a potential for change, but they said the U.S. embargo would remain until there was a transition to democracy. “There is a possibility and potential for change in Cuba, but those changes will have to be born inside Cuba,” said Assistant Secretary of State Tom Shannon. Raul said the “Cuban revolution is unique. Fidel is Fidel as we all know well. He is irreplaceable.” Dale Kietzman, president of Latin American Indian Ministries, said he doesn’t expect much change in the politics of the communist island nation. “I do think [Raul] will be just a little more relaxed about things, a little more orderly,” said Kietzman. “So I think that it actually will be of some benefit to Christians but not directly so.”

* HCJB Global Voice continues to air Spanish programs to Cuba via shortwave from South America. Hundreds of listeners have enrolled in the ministry’s Bible Institute of the Air, a Spanish correspondence program incorporating radio broadcasts. In addition, numerous pastoral training workshops, held in conjunction with Leadership Resources International, have been held in Cuba since the mid-1990s.


Sources: Christian Newswire, Religion Today, Baptist Press
Churches can resume providing live showings of Super Bowl broadcasts without opposition from the National Football League (NFL), NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell informed Utah Sen. Orin Hatch in a Feb. 19 letter. “For future Super Bowls the league will not object to live showings -- regardless of screen size -- of the Super Bowl by a religious organization on a routine and customary basis.” Goodell’s reversal settles an issue reported by the Baptist Press on Feb. 1, 2007, when the NFL informed a Southern Baptist church in Indianapolis that it would run afoul of federal copyright law by showing the Super Bowl on a screen wider than 55 inches. A Feb. 20 news release from Hatch’s office after Goodell’s reversal stated, “In essence, this provides churches the same right as sports bars.” The NFL said the showings should be “free and on premises used by the religious organization on a routine and customary basis.”

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