Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Apple Pulls Anti-Semitic IPad App

Apple CEO Steve Jobs has agreed to the request of an Israeli official to pull an iPad app that encourages anti-Semitism.

Yuli-Yoel Edelstein, Israel's minister of public diplomacy and Diaspora affairs, wrote a letter to Jobs, asking him to take action against an app that called for a "third intifada." The app, which was also compatible with iPhones, encouraged Muslims to violently attack Israel.

"Any promotion of hate or violence should always be removed," contends Gary Ratner, senior development professional for StandWithUs. "iPad users should always assist to ensure that this is the case."

The organization that created the app also launched a Facebook group earlier this year that was removed when the social networking site discovered the group's purpose.

Even though technology and the internet create a window of opportunity for social networking and interaction, Ratner points out that "there's also a great risk, and we've got to be aware of this risk and ensure that it isn't used for nefarious purposes without infringing on people's free speech rights."

Edelstein told Jobs that the app was "disastrous" because it could have potentially brought a large number of individuals against Israel.

Read More from One News Now

Harold Camping Follower Shoots Co-Worker Over Rapture Belief

An Oregon man, believed to be a follower of Harold Camping and in jail for allegedly shooting a co-worker last week, wanted to punish the victim for mocking the California preacher’s rapture prophecy, emerging developments suggest.

39-year-old man from west Eugene, Dale O’Callaghan, shot his co-worker, 33-year-old Jerry Andrews, in the shoulder June 24, calling him “one of those Satanic” people, according to a sworn affidavit filed in Lane County Circuit Court by Eugene Police Detective Ben Hall.

O’Callaghan and Andrews, co-workers at LHM Hydraulics for several years, had argued occasionally over Harold Camping’s prediction that the rapture would cause the end of the world beginning May 21, which turned out to be false, The Register-Guard quoted the victim’s mother, Robin O’Brien, as saying Tuesday.

The suspect, who had no adult criminal record until then, had been teased at work about his apparent belief in the rapture predicted by Camping, who spent millions of dollars on over 5,000 billboards and 20 recreational vehicles carrying the Judgment Day message.

O’Callaghan “expected to be taken up in the rapture, and it didn’t happen … He’d been getting some ribbing from the guys in the shop, and I guess he simmered over that,” O’Brien was quoted as saying. She added that her son did not want to speak with journalists.

While the two were not on bad terms, the suspect took it personally when the victim and other co-workers teased him in recent weeks over his belief in Camping’s prediction that Jesus Christ was to return to Earth May 21, the victim’s mother added.

However, the suspect’s father, Ronald O’Callaghan, said his son was not a believer in Harold Camping.

Investigators said the accused used a .357-caliber revolver to shoot Andrews once in the shoulder area as they first saw each other at work on the morning of June 24. O’Callaghan is in the Lane County Jail facing a felony charge of first-degree assault.

The bullet traveled across Andrews’ upper back and became lodged behind his left shoulder and “just missed paralyzing him,” his mother said, adding that he suffered a fractured shoulder and a fractured vertebra. Andrews is being given an outpatient treatment.

LHM Hydraulics, where the two work, is owned by the suspect’s parents.

The suspect insisted on having a lawyer at the time of police interrogation, but when he was taken to Circuit Court Monday he said he didn’t want representation by an attorney. However, after Judge Charles Zennach√© explained that the mandatory minimum sentence for the crime was seven and a half years in prison, he finally agreed.

O’Callaghan is apparently one of the hundreds of people who actually believed Camping’s prediction would come true. Some of his followers sold their homes, left their jobs or donated their life savings in anticipation of the rapture of 200 million Christians to heaven.

Read More From Christian Post

Muslims and Christians Clash Over Construction Of Christian Church In Egypt

A security official says Christians and Muslims have clashed in southern Egypt over the construction of a church.

A local security chief, Assem Hamza, says Muslim residents of the Awlad Khalaf village rallied Saturday outside Christian-owned land where construction of a church was under way.

Hamza said the construction was illegal. Security forces deployed as Muslim residents, including ultraconservative Salafis, moved in with bulldozers to try to bring down the construction.

Hamza said Christians fired gunshots and the two sides scuffled. Three Muslims were shot, including one in serious condition. A Christian has stab wounds.

Christians make up 10 percent of Egypt's population and complain of attacks by increasingly assertive Salafis.

Cross Set On Fire In Front Of Church

There is new information on a "chilling" crime in a green country community.

Now investigators with the Creek County Sheriff’s office say they know who set a cross on fire in front of a church.

It happened just last week outside St. Johns Church near Sapulpa in Creek County.

April Slavens has fond memories of many Sundays spent worshiping at the church.

But now, she says she is left with an image of a burning cross in her mind that just won’t go away.

"I had just left the house and I was heading into town and it was setting up against the fence and it was still smoking,” says April.

The image left her shocked, and so she called the sheriff’s department to report it.

“It was a wooden cross leaned up against the fence and it had white cloth leaned over against it and you could see where there were places on the ground where the cloth had fell and burnt,” she says.

Deputies found the same style of wood at a mobile home park right across the street.

“Through their interviews, they were able to find three people that were involved in it. One was an 18 year old and the other two being juveniles. Basically, they didn't have anything to do and got bored and thought that was something fun to do,” says Lt. Charles Redfern.

It’s a reality that’s hard for many in the community to believe.

“I didn't know if it was kids with nothing better to do, but it was wrong,” says April.
Read More From Fox 23

Atheist Billboard Placed On Church's Property Removed

(Columbus Dispatch)An atheist billboard didn't last long on church property on the East Side.

The smiling image of Dylan Galos was accompanied by the words "I can be good without God."

It was one of seven billboards posted across Columbus last week by the Freedom From Religion Foundation to introduce central Ohio residents to their atheist neighbors.

The message didn't sit well with the pastor of Christ Cathedral Church, 3350 Allegheny Ave., which owns the land where one of the billboards went up on a Clear Channel Outdoor sign.

The Rev. Waymon Malone ordered it removed, said Carolyn Kelley, his mother-in-law. Malone and his wife, Kimberlee, were out of town yesterday and could not be reached for comment.

"It upset him because of what it said," Kelley said. "It said we don't need God, and we're at church, so we do need God."

The billboard was removed days after it was installed on June 21, said Jay Schmidt, account executive for Matrix Media Services.

It was reposted on E. Main Street, just west of Alum Creek Drive, visible to eastbound traffic, Schmidt said.

Schmidt helped the Freedom From Religion Foundation find the billboard locations but didn't realize that the Galos billboard was on church property. That billboard is visible from Stelzer Road north of Allegheny Avenue, just as Stelzer turns into James Road.

Read More From The Columbus Dispatch

Monday, June 27, 2011

579 Ethiopian Muslims Jailed For Attacks On Christians

(One News Now)(Ethiopia is cracking down on those who have been targeting Christians, and the spokesman of one international group hopes that will bring a new level of understanding to other anti-Christian radicals. (See earlier story)

The Ethiopian military was needed to end the week-long rampage that began March 2. Jonathan Racho of International Christian Concern (ICC) tells OneNewsNow the suspects were rounded up and put on trial.

"Ethiopian courts sentenced 579 Muslims to prison terms ranging from three months to 18 years, and the court sentenced the Muslims to the prison terms for taking part in violence against Christians that left one Christian dead," he reports.

Muslim symbolMany other believers were injured, and 69 churches were burned to the ground, along with several Christian homes and other Christian properties.

"We also learned that an additional 107 individuals are accused of terrorism for their roles in attacks against the Christians, and the public prosecutors have brought charges against them in federal court," Racho explains.

Police are currently searching for eight people who are thought to be the masterminds behind the attacks. ICC is hopeful the prosecutions will prompt other extremists to understand that similar actions will mean consequences.

Read More from One News Now

Lady Gaga Sued Over Japan Disaster Relief Bracelet Proceeds

Just before she headlined Saturday night's Japan disaster relief benefit concert, Lady Gaga was sued over the bracelets she's been selling for the same cause.

According to the federal class action, the do-gooder pop star wasn't exactly being honest when her Web site claimed all the proceeds from sales of her "We Pray for Japan" wristbands would go to help victims of the March earthquake and tsunami.

A Detroit-era legal network said in its complaint, filed Friday, that Gaga kept part of the $5 that every customer paid for a wristband and inflated shipping charges so she could pocket more. She then counted even the money she allegedly pocketed in her donation figures, artificially inflating donation numbers, in order to make more money, the suit charged.

Gaga's deceptive advertising and personal profits from the bracelets violated federal racketeering laws and a slew of consumer protection laws, too, the suit claimed.

"When we tried to communicate with the defendants in this lawsuit, all we got was, 'well, some of the money is being retained, but we don't really know how much,'" said the 1-800-LAW-FIRM lawyer who sued, Alyson Oliver.

Read More from NBC DFW

U.S Suburb Under State Of Emergency After Rise In Gun Violence

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Darby Borough, Delaware County is under a State of Emergency due to a recent uptick of gun violence.

Five shootings in three days led to the announcement Friday night.

Mayor Helen Thomas announced the state of emergency telling residents the gun violence had to stop.

“I Mayor Helen R Thomas declare a state of emergency.”

Officials say the shootings were not fatal and they seem unrelated, but something had to be done to curb the violenc.

An 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew is in effect for adults and juveniles for at least 10 days.

Anyone outside during that time can be stopped and questioned by police, though Police Chief Bob Smythe says they’re more concerned about groups loitering or causing trouble.

“You’re in a group of more than three people and you are causing a disturbance. You’re going to be stopped and you’re going to be cited,” says Smythe.

A larger police presence is expected on the streets and Mayor Thomas says after the 10 days, officials will re-evaluate and go from there.

Read More from CBS Philly

China To Buy UK's/Europe's Debt To Save The Euro

It is in the interest of cash-rich China to help resolve the eurozone debt crisis, but Chinese premier Wen Jiabao, who is visiting Britain and Continental Europe, will want a share of the West’s buying power in return .

As Wen Jiabao, the Chinese premier, stepped off his plane in Birmingham on Saturday, it was difficult to avoid the feeling that the UK, and Europe, have never looked weaker in Chinese eyes.

In private, senior Chinese diplomats are now openly scornful of Britain’s economic prospects and have even asked why Mr Wen should grace such a weak trading partner with three days of his time.

Indeed, it is telling that the first stop on Mr Wen’s tour is Longbridge, the old MG Rover car factory that passed into Chinese hands in 2005. Once a byword for poor productivity, wildcat strikes and trade union power in its British Leyland and Austin Rover days, the plant is now host to China’s biggest industrial presence in the UK. Owned by Shanghai Automobile Industry Corporation, the factory designs and assembles MG cars in the UK made from car parts manufactured in China.

However, the Longbridge site remains the only major example of Sino-British co-operation, something that the Prime Minister, David Cameron, whose advisers have helped co-ordinate the visit, is determined to change.

On Mr Cameron’s visit to China last year, a target was announced for increasing bilateral UK-China trade to $100bn by 2015, from its 2010 total of $63bn and Number 10 sources said yesterday that they believe that “progress has been made” on hitting that figure.

Whether much more can be achieved depends partly on the success of the visit, which includes a formal summit in London tomorrow with a 35-strong Chinese delegation including China’s foreign minister Yang Jiechi, vice-minister for foreign affairs, Fu Ying, and minister of commerce, Chen Deming.

In formal business and personal conversations between Mr Wen and the British trade minister and former HSBC chairman Lord Green, who is accompanying the premier around Longbridge today, the UK message will be about further strengthening state and business ties with a view to achieving growth and sending that bilateral figure higher.

Meanwhile, Culture, Media and Sport Cabinet minister, Jeremy Hunt, who is accompanying Mr Wen to William Shakespeare’s birthplace of Stratford-upon-Avon, will be seeking to set up a formal structure of future summits to develop better “people” relationships between the countries with a particular focus on education, science and culture.

In London, where Mr Wen may go, apparently, for a jog in Hyde Park, the main topics for discussion will be the weighty topics of climate change (China is now one of the world’s leaders in green technology), the global economy, international security and development.

While Number 10 was refusing to comment yesterday on what else could be on the agenda, the Middle East and the economic crisis in Greece are also expected to come up for discussion.

Yesterday, at the start of his European visit in Hungary, Mr Wen gave a strong pledge of China’s support for the embattled euro, saying that China will buy Hungarian government bonds and “consistently” support the euro as Europe attempts to fight its way out of a sovereign debt crisis. “China is a long term investor in Europe’s sovereign debt market,” he said at a press conference with the Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban. “In recent years we have increased by quite a big margin our holdings of government bonds. We will consistently continue to support Europe and the euro.”

Read More from The Telegraph

Supreme Courts Says Banning The Sale Or Rental Of Violent Video Games To Children Violates Their 1st And 4th Amendment Rights

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court says California cannot ban the rental or sale of violent video games to children.

The high court agreed Monday with a federal court's decision to throw out California's ban on the sale or rental of violent video games to minors. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Sacramento said the law violated minors' rights under the First and Fourteenth amendments.

The law would have prohibited the sale or rental of violent games to anyone under 18. Retailers who violated the act would have been fined up to $1,000 for each infraction.

The court on a 7-2 vote said the law was unconstitutional.

More than 46 million American households have at least one video-game system, with the industry bringing in at least $18 billion in 2010.

Read More from Yahoo News

NY Catholic Bishops Now Expect Efforts 'to Enact Gov't Sanctions Against Churches'

( - As New York enacted a law late Friday that legalizes same-sex marriage in the state, the Roman Catholic bishops of New York released a statement saying they now expect efforts to enact laws that go after churches that insist on teaching the "timeless truths" about marriage and family.

"We strongly uphold the Catholic Church's clear teaching that we always treat our homosexual brothers and sisters with respect, dignity and love," the bishops said.

"But we just as strongly affirm that marriage is the joining of one man and one woman in a lifelong, loving union that is open to children, ordered for the good of those children and the spouses themselves," the bishops said. "This definition cannot change, though we realize that our beliefs about the nature of marriage will continue to be ridiculed, and that some will even now attempt to enact government sanctions against churches and religious organizations that preach these timeless truths."

The statement was signed by the bishops of all eight Roman Catholic diocese in the state of New York, led by Archbishop Timothy Dolan of the Manhattan-based Archdiocese of New York. The other bishops signing the statement included Bishop Howard Hubbard of the Albany Diocese, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio of the Brooklyn Diocese, Bishop Edward Kmiec of the Buffalo Diocese, Bishop Terry LaValley of the Ogdensburg Diocese, Bishop Matthew H. Clark of the Rochester Diocese, Bishop William Murphy of the Rockville Centre Diocese, and Bishop Robert Cunningham of the Syracuse Diocese.

The New York State Senate passed the same-sex marriage bill late Friday and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Catholic, signed the bill into law at 11:55 Friday night. The state assembly has passed the bill the week before. The law will go into effect in 30 days.

The law was enacted just in time for New York City's annual "gay pride" parade, which takes place on Sunday. The parade runs along Fifth Avenue, passing directly in front of Saint Patrick's Cathedral, the seat of the Catholic Archdiocese of New York.

"The passage by the legislature of a bill to alter radically and forever humanity's historic understanding of marriage leaves us deeply disappointed and troubled," the New York bishops said in their statement.

"We worry that both marriage and the family will be undermined by this tragic presumption of government in passing this legislation that attempts to redefine these cornerstones of civilization," they said.

"Our society must regain what it appears to have lost--a true understanding of the meaning and the place of marriage, as revealed by God, grounded in nature, and respected by America's foundational principles," said the bishops.

The Declaration of Independence justified the American colonies' break from Great Britain based on "the Laws of Nature and Nature's God" and famously stated that all men "are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights."

New York State Sen. Ruben Diaz was the only state senator to speak out against the same-sex marriage bill on the Senate floor yesterday. "God, not Albany, has settled the definition of marriage a long time ago," Diaz said.

Diaz is a minister in the Church of God.

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Emergent Church Leader Believes Being "Gay" Can Be A Biblical Lifestyle

World Net Daily--One of the key leaders of today's most cutting-edge church movement has opened an Internet discussion on the issue of same-sex marriage with the bold proclamation that he believes "gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual and queer" individuals can and should live out their sexuality in – and blessed by – the Christian church.

"I now believe that GLBTQ can live lives in accord with biblical Christianity (as least as much as any of us can!)," writes author and church leader Tony Jones, "and that their monogamy can and should be sanctioned and blessed by church and state."

Jones is an author and former youth pastor who holds a doctorate from Princeton Theological Seminary. He is also the national coordinator of Emergent Village, a loosely-formed friendship of churches that derive their descriptive name from having "emerged" from postmodernism to take the gospel of Jesus Christ into a post-Christian culture.

The "Emergent Church," as these mostly young, community- and mission-driven congregations are collectively known, is criticized by some for being "theologically liberal," praised by others as the best hope for passing the torch of Christianity to future generations.

In his "The New Christians" blog, Jones opens up a discussion and debate on the issue of homosexuality with his readers and with a fellow theologian/blogger, a self-described political conservative, Rod Dreher.

Jones quotes a former professor of his, who Jones says was active in the civil rights movement:

"Civil rights and abortion will be nothing compared to how the church has to deal with homosexuality," his professor said. "I'm glad it's your generation and not mine who'll have to figure that out."

In Jones' blog, he tells his personal story as a straight man trying to understand homosexuality: from his mother's assurance that she will love him "no matter whom he loves," to a high school friend who was likely a closet homosexual and who died of AIDS.

Despite recounting his earlier days of arguing that "biblical prohibitions to homosexual sex should be taken seriously," Jones admits his experiences and feelings led him toward a different conclusion.

"And yet," Jones writes, "all the time I could feel myself drifting toward acceptance that gay persons are fully human persons and should be afforded all of the cultural and ecclesial benefits that I am."

Jones acknowledges that detractors against the somewhat nebulous and hard-to-define Emergent churches will pick up on his statement and repeat a common refrain of criticism.

"'Aha!' my critics will laugh derisively, 'I knew he and his ilk were on a continuous leftward slide!'" Jones admits.

Some of the comments show he was correct in his prediction.

"So, your statement is that you believe this. ... Why do you believe it? Because it seems right to you?" asks a respondent identified as Michael C.

"I suppose if you re-define Biblical Christianity to mean: whatever I believe is biblical Christianity, and there is no outside authority to judge it – then yes it can be in accord. If however you mean biblical Christianity as judged by the Bible, then no it cannot be in accord," Michael C. writes. "I'm sorry to say but these arguments that I've heard from the Emergent movement seem to rely a whole lot more pleading and a lot less on Biblical exegesis (our rule and faith – especially when you say 'biblical' Christianity)."

Other comments, naturally, supported same-sex marriage.

"Gay people exist," writes Public Defender. "Gay families exist. Society cannot stop gay people from having sex or raising families. Why do you want to discourage monogamy and stable homes for these children?"

Fellow blogger and theologian Rod Dreher, whom Jones invited into a "blogalogue" on the subject, summed up his argument this way:

"Emotionally, I'd just as soon say, 'Let everybody marry, it's nothing to me.' I want my gay friends to be happy," writes Dreher. "But truth is not determined by emotion, as I see it, and certainly I find it epistemologically arrogant to assume that an early 21st-century white American bourgeois male can stand in judgment of Scripture and the Church, and the long, long experience of humankind on marriage."

Friday, June 24, 2011

18 Month Old Overdoses On Cocaine

Police say an 18-month-old Oakland girl has been released from the hospital after she overdosed on cocaine.Capt. Rick Stubbert with the Oakland Police Department said Jillian Jones, 21, called 911 Thursday morning to say that her baby wasn't breathing.

By the time police arrived, the child was conscious and alert.Stubbert said Jones was sleeping in the same room as the child and that the father, Justin Currier, 30, was not paying close enough attention to the child when she swallowed some cocaine that was in the room.

Stubbert said a "considerable amount of time had passed" from the time the child ingested the cocaine to when Jones called for help.Currier was jailed on a probation violation and Jones was released on bail.Stubbert said Jones seemed genuinely upset by what happened, but that Currier did not.

No Child Left Behind? High School Valedictorian and 10 Other Students Told They Didn't Graduate High School

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- School leaders admitted they dropped the ball.

A principal has resigned and almost a dozen Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students who thought they had graduated, just found out - they didn't.

They walked with their class at graduation, collected diplomas, and thought high school was behind them.

But CMS leaders admitted the folks in charge at Garinger High School messed up big time, and now 11 students are learning they didn't have enough credits to graduate. Among them - the valedictorian. She’s now in summer school trying to complete her credits.

Karen Thomas is the Executive Director for Support Services at CMS and oversees all school guidance counselors. She told us, “What should have happened did not happen. This was an unfortunate incident for every student that was involved. This is not the way we want to do business in CMS.”

This past school year, Garinger High was divided into five smaller schools.

The guidance counselor at the Leadership and Public Service school left in May, and soon after, the district looked into whether all seniors had the right credits to graduate.

“Upon completing the graduation credit analysis we realized there were students who were not eligible to graduate,” Thomas said.

But Thomas said the principal at the Leadership and Public Service school did nothing about it. That principal just resigned.

“There was an awareness. The communication that should have occurred between the school and the home did not occur,” said Thomas.

That is why it wasn't until summer school started this week that some of the 11 students found out they had not actually graduated.

And the valedictorian found out she actually is not.

“We will have to look at where the rankings are for all of the students and as I said, the valedictorian is the number one student in the class of graduates at the time,” said Thomas.

She said they’ll have to re-run the numbers to determine all of the students revised rankings.

CMS leaders told us they have individualized plans for each of the 11 students involved to help them earn the proper credits.

But even with that, the valedictorian will lose her status as first in class.

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Radicalized U.S Marine Reservist Charged In Shooting Of Military Buildings Near Nation's Capital

The 22-year-old Marine reservist charged Thursday with shooting at military buildings near the nation's capital radicalized himself through the Internet, but there is no indication he was planning to harm individuals, sources told Fox News.

After laying low for months, Yonathan Melaku of Alexandria, Va., was arrested early Friday morning at Arlington National Cemetery, which was closed at the time.

He allegedly possessed a backpack containing bomb-making materials, spray paint, and a notebook with references to Usama bin Laden, Al Qaeda and other "jihadist" materials, according to Neil MacBride, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. The incident shut down major highways around the Pentagon for much of Friday.

Melaku was charged Thursday with two counts of willfully injuring property of the United States, and two counts of knowingly carrying and discharging a firearm. MacBride wouldn't say whether prosecutors plan to file terrorism-related charges against Melaku, but he said such charges "are possible."

Melaku is currently in state custody on unrelated charges in Virginia, though he is expected to be transferred to federal custody.

Melaku allegedly frequented sites such as YouTube, where he watched videos outlining atrocities in the Muslim world and accusing the United States of victimizing Muslims, according to the sources familiar with the case who spoke on condition of anonymity. After arresting Melaku Friday, authorities specifically asked him whether he was inspired by the radical, U.S.-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, who has been linked to several recent attacks on the United States, but Melaku denied any such inspiration.

Authorities believe Melaku wanted to launch "symbolic" strikes, and there is no evidence he intended to harm individuals, according to a source familiar with the investigation. In addition, there is no evidence his alleged actions Friday had anything to do with the death of bin Laden, which has put U.S. officials on alert for possible retaliatory attacks.

At a press conference Thursday in Washington, the head of the FBI's Washington Field Office, James McJunkin, said "the evidence suggests" Melaku's intentions at Arlington National Cemetery were "at least vandalism, but we don't know exactly what his intent is, and we can't really speculate on that."

New Mexico's Largest Emergency Shelter "Joy Junction" To Release Android Phone App

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., June 24, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ -- Joy Junction, New Mexico's largest emergency shelter, in collaboration with Dezine Studios, has released an app for Android devices.

Joy Junction Founder and CEO Dr. Jeremy Reynalds said he is very excited about the new app, because it provides yet another way for Joy Junction to tell the homeless story, an avenue to which Reynalds is passionately committed.

"We live in a technological age, and we are making every attempt to harness that technology to let people know the plight of the ever increasing number of homeless people," Reynalds said.

Some of the app features include: general information about Joy Junction, the ability to make Paypal donations to the shelter, Dollar Days wish list ordering, a direct number dial to Joy Junction's main office, GPS location feature to map directions and links to external resources.

Dezine Studios, which gifted the app to Joy Junction, said, "Helping to expand the reach of Joy Junction via a mobile application strengthens their ability to provide services to a growing, under-represented population. We are proud to help them in this endeavor."

Reynalds added, "I am so grateful for the generosity of Dezine Studios and what this app allows us to do. By leveraging the rapidly expanding Android market, we are making it easier for our supporters to help us continue our mission of mercy and better provide for a those who are often overlooked."

Dezine Studios has committed to produce an iPhone application for Joy Junction, due out in the coming months.

Read More From Christian News Wire

Hezbollah Preparing For War Against Israel

Lebanon's Hezbollah militant group is preparing for a possible war with Israel to relieve perceived Western pressure to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad, its guardian ally, sources close to the movement say.

The radical Shi'ite group, which has a powerful militia armed by Damascus and Iran, is watching the unrest in neighboring Syria with alarm and is determined to prevent the West from exploiting popular protests to bring down Assad.

Hezbollah supported pro-democracy movements that toppled Western-backed leaders in Tunisia and Egypt, but officials say it will not stand idly by as international pressure mounts on Assad to yield to protesters.

It is committed to do whatever it takes politically to help deflect what it sees as a foreign campaign against Damascus, but it is also readying for a possible war with Israel if Assad is weakened.

"Hezbollah will never intervene in Syria. This is an internal issue for President Bashar to tackle. But when it sees the West gearing up to bring him down, it will not just watch," a Lebanese official close to the group's thinking told Reuters.

"This is a battle for existence for the group and it is time to return the favor (of Syria's support). It will do that by fending off some of the international pressure," he added.

The militant group, established nearly 30 years ago to confront Israel's occupation of south Lebanon, fought an inconclusive 34-day war with Israel in 2006.

Hezbollah and Syria have both denied that the group has sent fighters to support a military crackdown on the wave of protests against Assad's rule.

Hezbollah believes the West is working to reshape the Middle East by replacing Assad with a ruler friendly to Israel and hostile to itself.
"The region now is at war, a war between what is good and what is backed by Washington... Syria is the good," said a Lebanon-based Arab official close to Syria.

He said the United States, which lost an ally when Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was overthrown in February, "wants to shift the crisis" by supporting protests against its adversary.

"For us this will be confronted in the best possible way," he said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Analysts rule out the possibility of a full-scale regional war involving Syria, Iran and Lebanon on one side against Israel backed by the U.S. A war pitting Hezbollah against Israel was more likely, they said.

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Obama's unauthorized war on Libya costs $9,421,000 a day

(LA TIMES)--The Obama administration is spending almost $9.5 million every single day to blow things up in Libya because the president has determined that is in the country's national interest, this country's national interest, not Libya's.

You may not have noticed the $392,542 flowing out of the national treasury every hour, day and night, since those first $1.5 million Tomahawks flashed from the launch tubes back on March 19.

But Libya's dictator Moammar Kadafi has. Not enough to quit, mind you, because he can hide while his troops do the dying and killing.

Kadafi's military might has been degraded sufficiently by allied missiles and bombs to perhaps create a long-lasting stalemate with rebel forces in the desert conflict that Obama initially promised House members would last a matter of days, not weeks.Kadafi greets Obama 2009

Thirteen weeks later Obama, who was elected running against the war in Iraq, finds himself also embroiled in an escalating constitutional conflict at home over another war that he started while touring South America with his family in March.

You may recall that nine days later the Real Good Talker did what he usually does when attacked; he gave a speech to address the outcry over the sudden conflict without meaningful congressional consultation.

"When our interests and values are at stake, we have a responsibility to act," the Democrat declared. The president made the case that Kadafi was a ruthless ruler, who vowed "no mercy" on his own protesting countrymen. Obama added:

We knew that if we waited one more day, Benghazi – a city nearly the size of Charlotte – could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world. It was not in our national interest to let that happen. I refused to let that happen.

The trouble is that numerous bad guys are killing their own people all the time around the world. Syria comes immediately to mind as a place where government security....

....forces didn't even bother vowing "no mercy." They've just killed an estimated 1,000 protestors in recent weeks. Obama has "warned" Syria many times and frozen bank assets.

How could the Nobel Peace Prize winner order a military intervention over a possible civilian massacre in Libya, which was not attacking the United States, but do nothing over an actual civilian massacre in Syria? And how exactly is avoiding a stain on the world conscience in the vital national interests of the United States?

Additionally, Capitol Hill and many Americans have the notion that Congress is responsible for declaring war. They cite the War Powers Act of 1973, a legislative legacy of the divisive Vietnam War, which was also prosecuted by a Democratic president.

That act, passed by a veto-beating two-thirds majority, sets numerous requirements for any president involving the U.S. military without congressional authorization or a declaration of war: There must be an "attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces."

The president must notify Congress within 48 hours. And the White House has a total of 90 days to prosecute the conflict and withdraw without a declaration of war or legislative authorization.

Sunday is Day 90 of the Libyan war.

As Congress prepares to debate the new fiscal year's defense budget, House Speaker John Boehner warned the president this week he would be in violation on Sunday and mentioned cutting off funds for the mission. Cutting funds to troops, however, is extremely risky politically and unlikely.

Boehner added:

The ongoing, deeply divisive debate originated with a lack of genuine consultation prior to commencement of operations and has been further exacerbated by the lack of visibility and leadership from you and your administration.

On Wednesday, Reps. Dennis Kucinich, an Ohio Democrat, and Walter Jones, a North Carolina Republican, both staunch war critics, sued the administration in federal court over what they call its unconstitutional prosecution of a war.

On the same day the administration delivered a package of materials to Congress maintaining basically that the conflict, which will have cost $1.1 billion by late September, is so limited and inconsequential that Obama does not need congressional authorization.

Lawyers for Obama, who is not the first president to ignore the War Powers Act, argued the Libyan operation is not so much war as normal military operations that sometimes might involve hostilities:

U.S. forces are playing a constrained and supporting role in a multinational coalition, whose operations are both legitimated by and limited to the terms of a United Nations Security Council Resolution that authorizes the use of force solely to protect civilians and civilian populated areas under attack or threat of attack and to enforce a no-fly zone and an arms embargo.

A Boehner spokesman called the White House response "creative arguments" requiring further study and ongoing consultations.

Read More from LA Times

Montana Churches Fix 800 Bicycles To Help Kids

BILLINGS Montana- A church on the south side of Billings started fixing bikes six years ago and today, the event has expanded to other places in Billings.
Living Water Church hosted its seventh Bike Clinic.
The clinic fixes bikes, serves lunch and provides games and entertainment for kids.
The Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation is one of 40 sponsors and encouraged Living Water to make it a city-wide event.
1st Lutheran Church held a clinic at North Park and City Church put on a clinic at Lutheran Park in the Heights.
This year, the three churches expect to help about 800 kids.
"It's been awesome to see the kids come up and say thank you appreciate the bike," said Pastor Fred Rodda, of Living Water Church. "The idea is for us as a church to be the hands and feet of jesus to the community. As a pastor it's a blessing for the kids to come up and say thank you for the bike."
Pastor Rodda hopes to travel to Brazil in the fall, to bring this same Bike Clinic program to a church in Sao Paulo.
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Doomsday Preacher Harold Camping's Radio Show Cancelled

Doomsday preacher Harold Camping, who is recovering from a mild stroke, will stop airing his Open Forum show at the end of this month.

Camping took questions live from listeners every weeknight on Family Radio's Open Forum program. Ever since the 89-year-old broadcaster suffered a stroke on June 9, Family Radio has been airing re-runs of his 90-minute program. Family Radio will air pre-recorded segments of the Open Forum program from Camping's May 23 to June 9 broadcasts to fill up the schedule until the end of June then wrap up the show, according to the Oakland Tribune.

"When those are completed, we will have other programming that is scheduled to run in that time slot," Family Radio's program department secretary Judi Rathbone wrote in an e-mail.

Camping, whose speech was reportedly affected by the stroke, was recently moved from a local hospital in the Oakland, Calif., area to a nursing facility to recover.

Read More From Christian Post

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Afghan Troops Withdrawl To Begin In July

Burger Shop Hires Only Homeless

TSA Changing Policy On Pat Downs Of Children

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The government has made a change in its policy for patting down young children at airport checkpoints, and more are promised.

Airport security workers will now be told to make repeated attempts to screen young children without resorting to invasive pat-downs, the head of the Transportation Security Administration said Wednesday. The agency is working to put that change in place around the country, and it should reduce, but not eliminate, pat-downs for children, an agency spokesman said.

There was public outrage in April over a video of a 6-year-old girl getting a pat-down in the New Orleans airport. She was patted down, John Pistole said, because she moved during the electronic screening, causing a blurry image.

Read More from MSNBC

A Bible And A Gas Mask Is The New Norm In South Korea

SEOUL — At downtown Seoul’s posh Koreana Hotel, every room has a nightstand with a Bible, a room-service menu — and a gas mask.

Call it the new normal in South Korea.

A year of increased tension with nuclear-armed North Korea has shattered the hopes held by many South Koreans who wished for better relations with their aggressive, communist neighbor.

In March 2010, a North Korean submarine sank a South Korean naval ship, the Cheonan, killing 46 seamen. In November, the North fired nearly 200 artillery shells at the South Korean island of Yeonpyeong, hitting military and civilian sites and killing four people.

Last week, jumpy South Korean marines fired rifles at a civilian airliner landing in Seoul, after mistaking it for a North Korean warplane. No one on the Asiana Airlines flight from China was injured.

“Before Cheonan and Yeonpyeong, there was denial and a kind of nostalgic feeling toward North Korea,”said Choi Kang, professor at the Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security.

He said many South Koreans thought “we should have better relations with North Korea. We should provide food aid, blah, blah, blah.”

“Since the attacks, South Koreans’ general understanding of North Korea has become very negative, and I don’t think it’s reversible at this point in time,” he added.

The bombardment of Yeonpyeong Island marked the first time Pyongyang had attacked South Korean territory since the Korean War ended in 1953 with a truce, not a peace treaty.

“Prior to this, targets were military. Targets were kind of localized,” said Army Maj. Gen. Larry Wells, deputy chief of staff for U.S. forces in Korea.

“I think prior to the sinking of the Cheonan, a majority of South Korean citizens would say, ‘We know North Korea is there. We know what’s occurring there, but we don’t think they’d ever attack us.’ “

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak responded to the attacks by suspending the large-scale aid that dovish predecessors Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun had provided almost unconditionally.

Chun Young-woo, senior secretary to the president on national security and foreign affairs, said Mr. Lee has the “same goal” as Mr. Kim and Mr. Roh but argued that their so-called “Sunshine Policy” had given Pyongyang a dangerous sense of entitlement.

“Under the Sunshine Policy, we used to provide abundant food and fertilizer and almost everything North Korea wanted,” he said.

According to the United Nations, North Korea faces “regular, significant food shortages.”

Read More From The Washington Times

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Rapture Preacher Harold Camping Sent To Nursing Facility After Having Stroke

Harold Camping, known for his failed May 21 rapture prediction, has been moved to a nursing facility after he was hospitalized earlier this month for a stroke, Family Radio Network said Tuesday.

"Mr. Camping has been moved to a Skilled Nursing Facility, where he is undergoing rehabilitation to regain his strength," Family Radio, where Camping serves as general manager and president, said in a special announcement posted Tuesday on its website.

"Mr. and Mrs. Camping greatly appreciate all the cards, letters and flowers they have received, as well as your continuing thoughts and prayers. God has been very merciful," the announcement stated.

Camping, 89, had suffered from a mild stroke on the evening of June 9 and was admitted into a hospital in the Oakland, Calif., area. The stroke reportedly affected his speech, causing it to slur.

Ever since his hospitalization, Family Radio has been airing old broadcasts of the Open Forum program, where Camping takes Bible-related questions live from radio listeners each weeknight. Family Radio programs are broadcast on over 100 stations throughout the U.S.

Read More From Christian Post

Indiana Amish Man Charged With Soliciting A Minor Via Sexting

An Amish man from Milford, Ind., who pulled into a police sting operation in a horse and buggy has been charged with soliciting a 12-year-old girl via sexting.

Willard Yoder, 21, allegedly sent more than 600 text, picture and video messages to the local girl that he didn't know, including solicitations for sex and naked images of himself.

She is not Amish.

"[Yoder] told me several times that he just randomly chose that [telephone] number," Det. Craig Pennington of the Connersville Police Department said. "He just punched a number, hoping for a reply. If that is true, that's kind of scary because I'm sure that's not the first time that ever happened."

Alarmed by the disturbing messages, the girl told her mother, who later informed the police.

The Connersville Police Department set up a sting operation at a local restaurant in Milford Wednesday, with an undercover cop posing as the girl. According to police reports, Yoder sent five messages intended for the victim asking, "Are you ready for tonight?"

He pulled up to the sting in a basic, black, two-person horse and buggy.

"I could hear it coming. It's a distinctive sound," Pennington said. "It was the only horse and buggy on the road at that point."

Once police confirmed via exchanged text messages that Yoder was the alleged perpetrator, they arrested him, securing his cellphone and his horse and buggy.

"It was a shock. We have plenty years of experience on the scene and we had never seen anything like that," Pennington said.

Yoder admitted to sending all the messages to the child via his cellphone and was charged with four counts of soliciting a minor, police said.

While the victim's family seemed relieved after the arrest, the child's father, who asked for anonymity, was outraged by the initial messages.

"When the pictures started coming in, and they got more graphic, I was like, 'Oh, my gosh, this is unbelievable," he told ABC's Indiana affiliate, WRTV6.

Milford residents told the station they are accustomed to seeing Amish people with cellphones, even though their community usually shuns technology.

Incidents involving sexual assault have popped up among the Amish in recent years.

Read More From ABC News

Atheists Want Sign Honoring 9/11 Firefighters Removed

A group of New York City atheists is demanding that the city remove a street sign honoring seven firefighters killed in the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks because they said the sign violates the separation of church and state.

The street, “Seven in Heaven Way,” was officially dedicated last weekend in Brooklyn outside the firehouse where the firefighters once served. The ceremony was attended by dozens of firefighters, city leaders and widows of the fallen men.

“There should be no signage or displays of religious nature in the public domain,” said Ken Bronstein, president of New York City Atheists. “It’s really insulting to us.”

Bronstein told Fox News Radio that his organization was especially concerned with the use of the word “heaven.”

“We’ve concluded as atheists there is no heaven and there’s no hell,” he said. “And it’s a totally religious statement. It’s a question of separation of church and state.”

He was nonplussed over how his opposition to the street sign might be perceived – especially since the sign is honoring fallen heroes.

“It’s irrelevant who it’s for,” Bronstein said. “We think this is a very bad thing.”

David Silverman, president of American Atheists, agreed and called on the city to remove the sign.

“It implies that heaven actually exists,” Silverman told Fox News Radio. “People died in 9-11 but they were all people who died, not just Christians. Heaven is a specifically Christian place. For the city to come up and say all those heroes are in heaven now, it’s not appropriate.”

“All memorials for fallen heroes should celebrate the diversity of our country and should be secular in nature. These heroes might have been Jews, they might have been atheists, I don’t know but either way it’s wrong for the city to say they’re in heaven. It’s preachy.”

City leaders seemed dumbfounded by the atheists’ outrage because no one complained about the sign as it was going through a public approval process.

“It’s unfortunate that they didn’t raise this as an issue while it was undergoing its public review either at the community board level or when it came before the city council on their public agenda,” said Craig Hammerman, the district manager for Brooklyn Community Board Six.

Hammerman told Fox News Radio that the community was “solidly behind this proposal. Not a single person stood up to speak out against it. I think it’s a little late in the process for someone to be bringing this up now.”

Read More From Fox News

Prisoners Get Better Health Care, So Man Robs Bank To Get Medical Care In Jail

Some people who need medical care but can't afford it go to the emergency room. Others just hope they'll get better. James Richard Verone robbed a bank.

Earlier this month, Verone (pictured), a 59-year-old convenience store clerk, walked into a Gastonia, N.C., bank and handed the cashier a note demanding $1 and medical attention. Then he waited calmly for police to show up.

He's now in jail and has an appointment with a doctor this week.

Verone's problems started when he lost the job he'd held for 17 years as a Coca Cola deliveryman, amid the economic downturn. He found new work driving a truck, but it didn't last. Eventually, he took a part-time position at the convenience store.

But Verone's body wasn't up to it. The bending and lifting made his back ache. He had problems with his left foot, making him limp. He also suffered from carpal tunnel syndrome and arthritis.

Then he noticed a protrusion on his chest. "The pain was beyond the tolerance that I could accept," Verone told the Gaston Gazette. "I kind of hit a brick wall with everything."

Verone knew he needed help--and he didn't want to be a burden on his sister and brothers. He applied for food stamps, but they weren't enough either.

So he hatched a plan. On June 9, he woke up, showered, ironed his shirt. He mailed a letter to the Gazette, listing the return address as the Gaston County Jail.

"When you receive this a bank robbery will have been committed by me," Verone wrote in the letter. "This robbery is being committed by me for one dollar. I am of sound mind but not so much sound body."

Then Verone hailed a cab to take him to the RBC Bank. Inside, he handed the teller his $1 robbery demand.

"I didn't have any fears," said Verone. "I told the teller that I would sit over here and wait for police."

The teller was so frightened that she had to be taken to the hospital to be checked out. Verone, meanwhile, was taken to jail, just as he'd planned it.

Because he only asked for $1, Verone was charged with larceny, not bank robbery. But he said that if his punishment isn't severe enough, he plans to tell the judge that he'll do it again. His $100,000 bond has been reduced to $2,000, but he says he doesn't plan to pay it.

In jail, Verone said he skips dinner to avoid too much contact with the other inmates. He's already seen some nurses and is scheduled to see a doctor on Friday. He said he's hoping to receive back and foot surgery, and get the protrusion on his chest treated. Then he plans to spend a few years in jail, before getting out in time to collect Social Security and move to the beach.

Verone also presented the view that if the United States had a health-care system which offered people more government support, he wouldn't have had to make the choice he did.

"If you don't have your health you don't have anything," Verone said.

The Affordable Care Act, President Obama's health-care overhaul passed by Congress last year, was designed to make it easier for Americans in situations like Verone's to get health insurance. But most of its provisions don't go into effect until 2014.

As it is, Verone said he thinks he chose the best of a bunch of bad options. "I picked jail."

Read More from Yahoo News

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

New Documentary Covers The Topic of Indoctrination Of Students In Public Schools

(One News Now)A filmmaker and home-schooling father explains the problems with public education in a new documentary to be released this summer.

In IndoctriNation: Public Schools and the Decline of Christianity in America, Scottish-born producer Colin Gunn gives an answer to the education woes: Christ. Now living in Texas with his wife and children, Gunn tells OneNewsNow the only solution is found in the Bible.

"'The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom' (Proverbs 1:7), and if we want education, it has to be grounded in God's Word," he contends. "And that is certainly not what we have in the public schools."

Gunn believes parents need to take responsibility for their children's education and put an end to an addiction that he calls "educational welfare, which is this free government-offered education system."

"We see it's time to get it off that welfare and to take responsibility to home school your child or private school your child," the filmmaker suggests. "Certainly, your obligation scripturally is that you're responsible for that, so we encourage parents to really deal with this big issue."

He says home schooling is very doable for many parents, and it protects children from the harm they would likely experience in public schools.

"We cover that in the movie. We cover many of the consequences of peer pressure and some of the violent actions that have gone on in public schools, including the Columbine story," Gunn notes.

Read More From One News Now

Boston Mayor Tells NIKE Store To Take Down T-Shirt Display

BOSTON (CBS) – Mayor Tom Menino doesn’t like Niketown’s new window display at its Newbury Street store and he wants it taken down.

Menino said he was walking in the Back Bay with his wife recently and noticed T-shirts in the window with the expressions “Dope,” “Get High,” and “F**k Gravity” on them.

He believes the shirts promote drug use.

“Why would a national organization do that? Except to try stoop to the lowest common denominator to get people to buy their t-shirts,” the mayor told WBZ NewsRadio 1030 Tuesday.

“They should be out educating our young people about the damage drugs do to you. But in their windows on Newbury Street, they’re promoting the issue of drugs.”

The mayor wrote a letter to the store’s general manager, asking her to remove the shirts from the window.

“Your window display of T-shirts with drug and profanity wordplay are out of keeping with the character of Boston’s Back Bay,” the letter read. “We urge you to remove them.

“Should your company decide to take more seriously the issue of drug abuse, Boston has several nation-leading programs that may be of interest.”

In a statement to WBZ-TV, Nike said:

“These t-shirts are part of an action sports campaign, featuring marquee athletes using commonly used and accepted expressions for performance at the highest level of their sport, be it surfing, skateboarding or BMX. Nike does not condone the use of banned or illegal substances.”

Menino said the money spent on the campaign should be put it into drug prevention programs instead.

Read More from CBS Boston