Friday, December 14, 2012

Arlington Heights Annual Holiday Display to Include Nativity

Thomas More Society Commends Park District's Recognition of Religious Liberty in the Public Square
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill., Dec. 14, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- Beginning Saturday, December 15, the Arlington Heights Park District annual holiday display will include a Nativity scene that depicts the traditional Christmas celebration of the birth of Christ.

"This is a very wonderful and commendable step," said Tom Brejcha, President and Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Society. "We are gratified that Arlington Heights' holiday display will be more fully inclusive in recognition of citizens' belief that the Christmas holiday is also a holy day, when we honor the Nativity of Baby Jesus -- laid in a manger, wrapped in swaddling clothes, born to poor parents, strangers from another town, visited by shepherds and honored by kings, and whom Christians have worshipped over millennia as King of Kings. This is Chapter One of the Greatest Story Ever Told -- a story that has had a huge secular significance over the course of Western civilization as well as deep spiritual meaning for believers."

The Christmas manger scene is a privately-sponsored, privately-funded, and First Amendment-protected open expression of religious belief, in this traditional public forum, underwritten by the Illinois Nativity Scene Committee. The Christ-centered display will be open to the public through January 5, 2013.

The crèche joins the many other Christmas-themed displays in the northwest suburb's North School Park, at Eastman Street and Arlington Heights Road, in the northwest Chicago suburban town of Arlington Heights.

A brief opening ceremony to launch the Nativity's display in the park will be held at 1 p.m. Pastor Calvin Lindstrom of Christian Liberty Church and Schools will speak, and Father Bill Zavaski of Saint James Catholic Church will offer a blessing.

Brejcha elaborated: "This nativity scene in Arlington Heights, like other nativity scenes on Chicago's Daley Plaza and in the Rotunda of the State Capitol in Springfield, is constitutionally protected as both the free exercise of religious belief and free speech by private citizens in the public square. We thank Arlington Heights for honoring the right of citizens to proclaim the joyful message of Christmas in this public park."

The Thomas More Society, a Chicago-based non-profit public interest law firm, has been instrumental in defending and securing permits for annual Nativity displays in numerous venues. The Society offers free legal help to individuals and private citizen groups interested in putting up similar Nativity scenes -- privately sponsored and funded -- in any traditional public forum in their own towns, villages, and hamlets within Illinois or elsewhere. The Thomas More Society can be reached at 312.782.1680 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            312.782.1680      end_of_the_skype_highlighting.

About the Thomas More Society
The Thomas More Society is a national not-for-profit law firm that exists to restore respect in law for life, marriage, and religious liberty. Headquartered in Chicago, they foster support for these causes by providing high quality pro-bono professional legal services to clients across the nation. Some of their clients include leading pro-life and pro-family organizations such as National 40 Days for Life, Lila Rose and Live Action, Catholic Bishops, religious orders, priests, nuns, pregnancy crisis centers, Joe, Ann, and Eric Scheidler's Pro-Life Action League, homeschoolers, elected officials, and many others. For more information or to support the work of Thomas More Society, please visit

Christian Newswire

The Similarities Between the Republican Party and Christians, Why Both Have Failed

ST PETERSBURG, Fla., Dec. 14, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- The following is submitted by Rev. William Keller, founder of
    This is a message no pastor will preach and no Christian leader will admit to!!! This has ZERO to do with politics, but in light of the recent election, I find many incredible similarities between the failures of the Republican Party and true Biblical Christians. Let me say that BOTH have failed because they have, 1) NO VISION, 2) their real goal is simply to make money and not see any real change, 3) they have turned into nothing but entertainment vehicles.

    The Bible says in Proverbs that, "Where there is no vision, the people perish!" The biggest reason the Republicans lost the Presidential election and didn't take control of the Senate is because Mitt Romney and the party as a whole had NO VISION! Never once was there any sort of vision for the country articulated for people to hear, understand, and buy into.

    The church has failed for the EXACT SAME REASON! There is not ONE national leader who has articulated ANY sort of vision for this nation to turn back to God and His Truth with a legitimate plan other than to pray. Prayer is a great first step, but at some point there has to be a true vision with a supporting plan to see that vision come to fruition!

    Making money is the only real goal of any political party or entity. Sadly, that has now become the only real goal of the church. Churches and major ministries raise tens of millions annually in order to build and upkeep huge complexes of bricks and mortar, hire huge staffs of people, and in many cases, pay the top people incredible salaries and benefits. Private jets, multiple mansions, new Bentley's, are the norm in the world of big time Christendom. The world has correctly identified much of what is done as nothing but a "money hustle" and they are 100% correct!

    Politics when I was growing up in the 60's and 70's was mainly about ideology. While that element still exists today, over the past 15 years politics has become largely about entertainment. The Republican Party really led the way in the world of "political entertainment," though the Democrats are quickly catching up. Never forget for a second that Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Michael Savage, Mark Levine, Fox News, Ann Coulter, Karl Rove, Dick Morris, new groups like Freedom Works, Newsmax and the rest of the conservative internet world, are first and foremost...ENTERTAINERS!

    There are also many high profile Christian/political groups like Focus on the Family, The Family Research Council, men like Jay Sekulow, Ralph Reed, Mark DeMoss, all who have a history of putting politics ahead of the Gospel for money, power, and influence, such as in the recent election when they set aside their faith beliefs to back a candidate of a satanic cult. These people and organizations make their millions REGARDLESS of who wins, of who is in office. The best example is this previous election, and how without shame they haven't changed a thing, and in most cases have doubled down!

    Sadly, with the advent of Christian TV and radio over the past 40 years, much of Christendom is now nothing but "spiritual entertainment." Churches have been converted into great performing arts theaters where you are entertained for an hour each Sunday. The top names on Christian TV are treated like Hollywood celebrities. They use their influence over millions primarily to enrich themselves and further their own kingdom, NOT the Kingdom of God!

    The results? Because the Republican Party chose a candidate with NO VISION, a man who had to lie that he was a Christian for fear people would find out what he and his cult really believed, who had a record of supporting the killing babies when it was politically expedient, than decided to be pro-life when that become politically expedient, who was all for gay marriage when that was politically expedient, than decided to be for traditional marriage with that was politically expedient, they lost to a man who has proven over the past 4 yrs to be the worst President in the history of this nation on top of being a true enemy of God on every spiritual issue of the day!

    The results for Christians has been even more devastating since souls are at stake! Christians and our worldview are now marginalized and clearly no longer the view held by the majority in this nation. We have now been totally frozen out of the secular media, unless you are a gutless wonder like Joel Osteen trying to sell your latest book and they know you won't say anything they deem outrageous like "you will die and go to hell unless you come to know Jesus by faith as your Savior." Worst of all, we have clearly lost the culture and have virtually zero impact on the world around us any longer.

    We now live in a nation where the legalized slaughter of an innocent baby is called a "woman's right." Gay marriage is called "marriage equality" and is the current law in many states. In the coming years it will be the law in virtually all states regardless of what the Supreme Court decides next June. The CHOICE of homosexual behavior is now viewed as normal and acceptable. In addition, boys can now become girls and girls can now become boys, and if you dare say anything negative you are labeled as a hate monger. Hosts on major TV networks openly root for, cheer for and promote the radical homosexual agenda and the legalized killing of innocent babies!

    If you believe in the Bible you are called a hick, stupid, you don't believe in science, and are to be pitied. I guarantee you that if they made "A Charlie Brown's Christmas," "The Andy Williams Christmas Special," or "The Lawrence Welk Christmas Show" today, they would never have a chance to get on the air!

    The better percentage of the last two generations who have never even been to a church. A majority of those who do are either in some liberal denomination that accepts and even glorifies sins like homosexuality and abortion, or in churches who are part of these man-made marketing strategies like Purpose Driven/Seeker/Emerging Church/Prosperity Gospel, which are designed to fill the pews with warm bodies not converts, that preach a soft, watered-down, motivational message so nobody is offended (and they come back next Sunday to put their money in the offering plate).

    Those who have grown in influence due this void of true Christian leaders are false religions like Islam, the New Age universalism that people like Oprah and Deepak Chopra peddle which lie to people that everyone will get to Heaven, and satanic cults like Scientology and Mormonism. Probably the most dangerous man alive today is Glenn Beck. Not because of his political ideology, but because he uses his various media platforms to attract people through politics and then promotes "Christianity," God," Jesus," and the "Bible."

    That sounds great, but what Beck doesn't tell his followers is that Mormon doctrine is 100% inconsistent with Biblical Christianity and he is no more a Christian than a Muslim is. Nor does Beck tell people that his "god" is NOT the God of the Bible, but was once a man and he and all Mormon men believe they too will die and become the god of their own planet. Nor does Beck tell you that the "jesus" he worships is NOT God incarnate, not a deity, but the result of a sexual union between their man/god and Mary and the brother of Lucifer!

    While quoting the Bible like all of those in his cult do, Beck fails to mention that his cult believes the Bible is a flawed and incomplete book, superseded by the writings of his cults con-artist, polygamist, pedophile, racist founder Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, Pearl of Great Price, and Doctrines and Covenants. Beck helps to perpetuate the lie that he is a Christian by buying off modern day Judas' like David Barton, John Hagee, and James Robison, to give him undeserved credibility with ignorant Christians who fund a bulk of Beck's $100 million annual empire.

    The answer my friend is simple. IF, and it is a big IF, Christians are going to reclaim the culture, reclaim our rightful place as the conscience of this nation, save this nation from God's wrath and judgment that has already begun by leading this great land back to the Almighty and His Truth, we must do three things.

    The first is VISION. As we are currently under God's wrath and judgment for the gross sins of this nation like the fact that we slaughter over 4,000 innocent babies every 24 hours, we have perverted God's Holy Institutions of Marriage and the Family, and that we have bowed down and worshipped every false god and idol man has created in his evil imagination. The ONLY vision is to have a "Nineveh Moment" and turn this nation back to God and Biblical Truth.

    Liveprayer has articulated that vision for several years now and has put the pieces in place to see it happen thru the Jonah Project ( and the Remnant (

    The second is a pure purpose. Money is NOT a pure purpose. Raising money is something many have been able to accomplish without any help from God. The pure purpose is clearly to see this nation turn back to God and Biblical Truth while bringing hope to the hurting and salvation through faith in Jesus Christ to the lost. This is what Liveprayer has been about for the 13+ years we have been online.

    The third is a higher goal. There are MANY entertainers. They come and go. One is hot today, forgotten tomorrow. The higher goal is not to achieve fame and notoriety, but to advance the Kingdom of God. Since day one, Liveprayer has been about one thing, lifting up the name of Jesus so that all men will be drawn unto Him! That is our one and only goal!

    Over the past 13 yrs I have warned people often this day would come. It is now here. We no longer have the numbers. What numbers we do have are woefully divided. We no longer drive the culture, the culture now drives the church. Our only hope, our only answer, is to get back to the basics.

    There has to be a clear vision. While it takes money to operate, it is only to finance the vision in order to see that vision fulfilled. The only one who is to be glorified is the Lord. That is the answer and the only hope we have to see this nation saved from experiencing the full wrath and judgment of Almighty God!!!
About Live Prayer: In 1999 Bill Keller launched It has gone on to become the most successful online Christian ministry in the history of the internet. Each morning, Bill Keller's Daily Devotional that he has written every morning for over 13 years is emailed to over 2.4 million subscribers worldwide. Information on Liveprayer is available at:

Christian Newswire

World's Three Major Bible Ministries Partner with Philanthropists to Create 'The Digital Bible Library'

Every Tribe Every Nation Aims to Eradicate "Bible Poverty"
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla., Dec. 13, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- Today, the world's three major Bible ministries, working alongside leading Christian philanthropists, announced the launch of Every Tribe Every Nation (ETEN), a ministry alliance that will open Bible access for more than six billion people across the globe. Leveraging the leading-edge technologies of The Digital Bible Library, hundreds of Scripture translations are currently available. More than 1,000 additional language translations will be ready for digital deployment in the next year and will reach over 2,000 in the next five years.

More than 1.2 billion people worldwide have no access to the Bible in their heart language and there are currently 2,000 languages that have no Scripture translation efforts underway. These sobering statistics shine a light on the reality of "Bible poverty" and the tremendous need to develop innovative new approaches to translation, distribution and evangelism. It is in response to this need, and with the aim of eradicating Bible poverty, that ETEN is now launched.

Biblica, Wycliffe Bible Translators USA and American Bible Society, which together, with their international partners, account for 90 percent of the Bible translations in the world, formed ETEN to catapult Bible ministry into a new digital age. The centerpiece of ETEN's effort is the mobilization of The Digital Bible Library, operated by the United Bible Societies, which will serve as the world's definitive digital Scripture repository. Through The Digital Bible Library, Scripture texts are standardized, digitized, centralized and accredited. By drawing texts into one easy-to-access location, The Digital Bible Library will make Scriptures readily accessible to Christian organizations, ministries and missionaries, enabling them to share God's Word with those they serve in languages and formats these communities can engage. The Digital Bible Library will provide licensees the ability to access content from their mobile devices in a variety of formats, including audio, video, apps, websites, and print on demand.

"The Digital Bible Library will unleash God's Word for millions of believers, making it accessible on a multitude of digital platforms. We invite other Scripture text ministries to join us at Wycliffe along with our friends at Biblica and American Bible Society in making their texts available through The Digital Bible Library so that access and engagement with God's Word can increase exponentially," said Bob Creson, President/CEO of Wycliffe Bible Translators. "Just as Gutenberg's printing press ushered in a whole new era for Bible distribution in the 1400s, Every Tribe Every Nation is on the cusp of another 'Gutenberg moment.'"

Dr. R. Lamar Vest, President and CEO of the American Bible Society, added: "There is a kairos moment when the activities of Scripture engagement and the breakthrough in technology meet for an extraordinary result. For all the work of our 200 years of Bible Society mission, I believe we are about to see the history of Bible outreach rewritten."

The Digital Bible Library offers a universal format for ease of publishing, ministry access, and digital rights management, while employing a technology platform that combines usability, security, quality control and standardization. ETEN is an alliance focused on leveraging the resources of its ministry partners to enable access to texts for current and future frontline ministries around the globe. ETEN's funds will directly support projects that complete language translations and digitize Scripture, further accelerating access to God's Word for millions of people.

"Every Tribe Every Nation is committed to leading the effort to quickly and efficiently add more Scripture texts to The Digital Bible Library so that ministries around the world can access the Bible for their kingdom work," said Doug Lockhart, President and CEO of Biblica. "This library is the key to unleashing ministry opportunities from South America to Asia. Because of the rapid expansion of the web, social networks and mobile technology, more opportunities for spreading God's Word arise every month. We must work quickly to take advantage of these new 'roads' into places where people desperately need more than just food and water. They need to hear the Words of Life."

One of the first Digital Bible Library "cardholders" is YouVersion, a Bible app that has been downloaded onto nearly 70 million devices. Since the app's 2008 launch, users have spent more than 31 billion minutes reading the Bible on YouVersion.

"The biggest challenge YouVersion has faced to date has been gaining quick and efficient access to translations. What used to take a significant amount of effort and time, often several months, now can be accomplished in a matter of minutes as a result of having access to The Digital Bible Library to pull text from," said Bobby Gruenewald, founder of YouVersion. "YouVersion is just one example of an organization benefitting from the work of Every Tribe Every Nation as part of our work to increase Bible access and engagement for today's generation."

Another early benefactor of The Digital Bible Library is BibleSearch (, which draws most of its 235 translations from the library for free display on its dedicated website.

The vision for ETEN was first cast by Oklahoma City-based businessman and philanthropist, Mart Green. Green's family owns retailer Hobby Lobby, and Green is the founder of Mardel Christian and Educational Supply, a 35-store chain. Mart's global travels showed him the void that exists in the areas of Bible translation and engagement, and highlighted the opportunity to leverage today's technology to meet these needs. He also recognized that the challenge was too great for any single person or organization to address. As a result, he called on the leading Bible ministries to join him in a first-of-its-kind collaborative effort with a unified mission: to provide God's Word in everyone's heart language in a format that they can engage with so their lives may be transformed.

"God put the issue of Bible poverty on my heart in a significant way, and He opened many doors to make this ministry alliance a reality," said Green. "Prior to the formation of Every Tribe Every Nation, Bible ministries were often working in silos. While they were making important progress in their individual efforts, it was clear that an opportunity existed for greater collaboration to more rapidly advance their individual efforts. The goal of Every Tribe Every Nation is to mobilize the necessary leadership and financial resources across our alliance partners so that by 2033, every tribe and every nation in the world has access to God's Word in their heart language."

ETEN is an alliance between Christian ministries and donors partnering to accelerate engagement in God's Word for anyone, anywhere, anytime, in a language and form they know best. ETEN Ministry Alliance partners include the world's major, most experienced Scripture providers, as well as leading Christian philanthropists. The ETEN Ministry Alliance seeks to mobilize the necessary leadership and financial resources across its alliance partners so that by 2033, every tribe and every nation has digital access to God's Word in their heart language.

Central to ETEN is The Digital Bible Library, the definitive, collaborative inter-ministry digital Scripture repository, owned and operated by the United Bible Societies on behalf of the Alliance. Through The Digital Bible Library, digitized Scripture becomes accessible to qualified ministries for sharing God's Word with communities and individuals in a language and format that they can engage with, so their lives may be transformed. ETEN ministry "cardholders" (such as YouVersion and BibleSearch) deliver translations via apps, websites, and print on demand. The Word goes right where it's needed -- all while protecting intellectual property rights.

Christian Newswire