Bible website garners billions of views

August 3 2018 by Aaron Earls, Facts & Trends

Celebrating their 25th anniversary today (August 1), Bible Gateway announced their website has been viewed more than 14 billion times by people using more than 1 billion devices. “Our mission statement is ‘To honor Christ by equipping people to read and understand the Bible wherever they are,’” said Rachel Barach, general manager of Bible Gateway.

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ChinaAid to launch petition for imprisoned pastor

August 3 2018 by Morgan Collier, Baptist Press

The human rights organization ChinaAid is initiating a petition drive to free John Cao, a Chinese pastor who has been imprisoned since March 2017. According to ChinaAid, Cao was “unjustly framed” – sentenced to seven years in prison and fined $3,000 – for “organizing illegal border crossing” …

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GenSend helps students venture to the mission field

August 2 2018 by Brandon Elrod, NAMB

College-age students are moving to urban areas across North America in search of opportunity. For one group, however, the opportunity they seek is not economic but spiritual. Students who participate in Send Relief’s GenSend program want to further the cause of Christ in areas where the gospel has not taken root.

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Religious liberty threats addressed at ERLC event

August 1 2018 by Tom Strode, Baptist Press

Religious freedom in Southeast Asia faces threats from required registration regimes and non-government forces, panelists said at a Capitol Hill discussion co-hosted by a Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) entity. The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) joined with two other advocacy organizations to hold the July 26 event – titled “Lessons from Southeast Asia: State and Non-State Threats to Religious Freedom” …

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7,000 churches, mosques still closed in Rwanda shutdown

August 1 2018 by Diana Chandler, Baptist Press

Nearly 7,000 churches and mosques remain closed in Rwanda months after the government began shutting down houses of worship, the Rwandan government has reported. The government continues to close houses of worship, citing various building code violations and requirements that pastors complete theological education at accredited schools, World Watch Monitor reported July 27.

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Religious liberty: International conference seen as key advance

July 31 2018 by Tom Strode, Baptist Press

Religious liberty advocates drew hope from a first-ever international gathering of government officials, civil society representatives and faith leaders to promote the freedom of all people to practice their beliefs. The U.S. State Department convened the inaugural Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom July 24-26 in Washington, hosting delegations from more than 80 governments …

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Imprisoned U.S. pastor in Turkey moves to house arrest

July 26 2018 by Diana Chandler, Baptist Press

American pastor Andrew Brunson has been granted transfer from a Turkish prison to house arrest awaiting an Oct. 12 hearing, his attorneys said July 25. The move comes a week after a Turkish court denied Brunson’s plea for release after nearly two years’ imprisonment on allegations of terrorism and spying.

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Deaf men stir IMB worker’s heart for their souls

July 25 2018 by IMB Staff

The imam placed his copy of the Quran carefully on the table and called the men at the memorial service to attention. He opened the book, lifted his hands toward heaven and began to chant in honor of the man who had died. The Deaf men in the room copied the stance but remained silent …

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Uzbekistan’s religious liberty violations mount

July 24 2018 by David Roach, Baptist Press

Two new requirements for religious organizations seeking government recognition in Uzbekistan are said to evidence the Central Asian nation’s continued restriction of religious liberty. Comprising five former Soviet republics, Central Asia includes Uzbekistan and two other countries on the U.S. State Department’s list of countries of particular concern (CPCs) for religious liberty violations: Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.

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Still jailed in Turkey, Brunson gave ‘bold’ witness

July 20 2018 by David Roach, Baptist Press

American pastor Andrew Brunson’s continued imprisonment in Turkey following a July 18 court hearing is probably an act of political maneuvering rather than Islamic persecution, two Islamic studies professors say. Resurgent conservative Islam in Turkey is, however, part of the background, the professors say …

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