Monday, January 17, 2011

Singer George Beverly Shea at 102yrs old Still has Work to do for God!

MONTREAT — They call George Beverly Shea “America's beloved gospel singer,” but that's almost an understatement, given how much he has accomplished in 101 years of life.

He's performed on almost every corner of the planet and holds the Guinness Book of World Records mark for singing in front of the most people ever, a combined audience of 220 million, much of it with his old friend the Rev. Billy Graham.

He's met almost every president of the past 60 years. He's recorded more than 500 vocal solos, more than 70 albums and performed on radio, TV and in film. He's earned 10 Grammy nominations and won the award in 1965.

Next month, just after his 102nd birthday, he's headed to Los Angeles to collect a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Recording Academy, the group that presents the Grammys. The Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented Feb. 12, a day before the full Grammy ceremony.

“We believe that Mr. Shea will be the oldest living recipient” of the Lifetime Achievement Award, said Grammy spokeswoman Stephanie Schell. This year, other recipients are singer-actress Julie Andrews, bandleader Roy Haynes, the Juilliard String Quartet, the Kingston Trio folk group, country superstar Dolly Parton and punk rockers The Ramones.

Shea brushes aside notion of stardom.

“I don't see much spotlight,” he said. “I never did anything on my own. Well, I was 26 years on RCA (records), and that was nice. The man who signed up Elvis signed me up. I think Elvis sold a few more records than I did.”

He continues to perform concerts, most recently around Christmas. “I feel very much alive,” he said.

More than a grand voice, Shea is known as a loyal friend and family man and a crucial member of the Graham ministry — and as an inspiration to generations of Christian musicians.

“He laid the foundation in the middle and later part of the 20th century for what we know as popular Christian music,” said Jim Kirkland, director of radio for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, which includes Black Mountain radio station WMIT-FM/106.9 The Light.

READ More at Citizens-Times

EU School Removes Christian Holidays BUT Keeps Muslim Ones

Catholic News Agency (CNA) reports the European Commission printed three million school diaries, which include the calendars, that it hands out free of charge to students who request them. But missing from all the copies were any references to sacred Christian holidays.

CNA quoted former French politician and government minister Christine Boutin, who said that while Christian holidays such as Christmas and Easter are missing from the diary’s pages, days commemorating “Sikh Baisakhi-Day, the Jewish Yom Kippur holiday, the Muslim holiday Aid-el-Kebir,” remain.

The omissions have drawn the ire of the Christian Democratic Party in France. The group is circulating an online petition to have the Christian holidays reinstated.

The petition asks, “Why is this omission unacceptable?” and then outlines three reasons:

- The role of Christianity in the European contruction is an undeniable and historical fact. How can this diary pretend to inform teenagers about the EU, removing all references to christianism, negating a religion that contributed so much to its construction and unity ?

- Christianity is the first religion in Europe. This oversight offends many people. The denial of something so important for them, the oversight of the values and beliefs they share, is intolerable.

- Christianity is not only a religious factor, but also a cultural and founder factor of the history and identity of many European Nation’s. Christian holidays, in particular Christmas and Easter, absent in this diary, are celebrated through all Europe by many persons, even non Christians.

Read CNA’s original report as well as the petition.

An Estimated $34 Billion Will be Spent in Financial Fraud in 2011 by Christian Leaders

The January 2011 issue of the International Bulletin of Missionary Research reported that Christian religious leaders will commit an estimated $34 billion in financial fraud in 2011 while $31 billion will be spent on global missions. Researchers from the Center for the Study of Global Christianity estimate that Christian religious leaders will commit $90 million in financial crimes daily and the fraud is growing at a rate of 5.97% each year. If the researchers are correct, religious financial fraud among Christians will almost double in 14 years to $60 billion annually by 2025. 1


1 Todd M. Johnson, David B. Barrett, and Peter F. Crossing, “Status of Global Mission, 2010, in Context of 20th and 21st Centuries”, International Bulletin of Missionary Research, Vol. 35, No.1, page 29, January 2011

Read More Here