Indonesia: Terrorists behind murder of 4 Christians, attack on Salvation Army post identified

CP Current Page: World | Tuesday, December 01, 2020 | Members of the clergy conduct Easter mass in an empty church and streamed online as part of social distancing measures amidst the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic in Jakarta on April 12, 2020. | Muslim extremists with the terrorist group Eastern Indonesia Mujahideen (MIT) are believed to be responsible for the gruesome attack on The Salvation Army’s service post in central Sulawesi that left four Christians dead.
According to International Christian Concern, on Nov. 27, Poso-based MIT militants Ali Kalora and Jaka Ramada, who pledge allegiance to the Islamic State, set fire to a church and burned down the homes of six churchgoers after they attacked the Lewonu Lembantongoa Service Post of The Salvation Army, slitting the throats of three Christians and beheading another.
The leader of the outlawed Islamic group, Ali Kalora, was also seen at the scene of the crime. According to Yoga Priyautama, the chief of police in Sigi, a joint team ..

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UK police apologize to pastor after storming church during legal online service broadcast

CP Current Page: World | Tuesday, December 01, 2020 | The Union flag flies in front of the Clock face on the Queen Elizabeth Tower, commonly referred to as Big Ben on April 2, 2019, in London, England. | Police in the United Kingdom have apologized to an African pastor after he was accused last week of breaking COVID-19 regulations as he held a virtual service.
Thames Valley police officers apologized after they stormed into a Pentecostal Church called Kingdom Faith Ministries International Church in Milton Keynes, a town approximately 50 miles northwest of London in Buckinghamshire, according to the BBC.
Pastor Daniel Mateola was hosting a broadcast service in his church being streamed to 150 online members when the authorities arrived on the scene following reports of loud music.
When Mateola attempted to tell the police that he was operating his house of worship in keeping with relevant government guidelines and that what he and his team were doing was legal, seven additional cops w..

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UK high court rules kids younger than 16 can’t consent to puberty blockers; detransitioner wins case

CP Current Page: World | Tuesday, December 01, 2020 | The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust building in London, England. | A U.K. high court on Tuesday ruled against the Tavistock clinic, the NHS' sole gender clinic, in favor of a detransitioner who said she was harmed by puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones prescribed to her when she was a teenager.
In a much-awaited ruling, the case of 23-year-old Keira Bell reached its conclusion when the judges ruled that children younger than 16 lack the maturity to give informed consent to the experimental treatments that alter the body. Bell, along with another unnamed claimant, brought the suit against the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust, which operates the gender identity development service. The unnamed claimant is a mother of a 15-year-old child, who is autistic and is on the waiting list for treatment at the clinic.
Bell claimed in the suit that the gender-transition drugs irreparably damaged her body and have likely made ..

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Belgium investigating around 10 allegedly illegal euthanasia deaths

CP Current Page: World | Monday, November 30, 2020 | Belgian authorities are now investigating approximately 10 allegedly illegal euthanasia-related deaths in Leuven, a city east of Brussels.
In a nation with one of the most permissive legal regimes in the world, officials say they were tipped off by a letter to the De Standaard newspaper, which was penned anonymously, according to BioEdge Sunday.
The letter recounted how a family member who died two years ago was told that it was to be presumed that euthanasia was the cause of death. The doctors that administered the euthanasia did not inform the family, an experience the family described as “traumatic.”
Informing the family if someone wishes to be euthanized is not legally required in Belgium but some medical groups recommend it.
The two doctors who were named in the letter are associated with nursing homes in the Emmaus group — a movement that was founded in 1949 by Abbé Pierre (Henri Marie Joseph Grouès), a French Catholic priest, ..

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Police block Canadian churchgoers from drive-in worship service: ‘heartbreaking’

CP Current Page: World | Monday, November 30, 2020 | Police block the parking lot of Church of God Steinbach in the Canadian province of Manitoba, Nov. 29, 2020. | After being fined $5,000 for holding an in-person worship service in violation of Manitoba province’s public health order, a Canadian church was prevented by police from holding a drive-in worship service on Sunday.
The Church of God Steinbach posted a video on its Facebook page showing “lots and lots of police” blocking churchgoers on a snowy day from entering the church’s parking lot for the 9:30 a.m. service. Unable to enter, dozens of cars lined up outside the parking lot and listened to the pastor preach from the outdoor stage through radio broadcast.
“God has given us the right to worship Him together and He wants to see His people united,” Senior Pastor Henry Hildebrandt said from the stage. “It seems like we’re living in a different Canada. It’s very heartbreaking to me.”
The church in rural Manitoba had received a $..

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Boko Haram kills at least 110 civilians in this year’s ‘most violent direct’ attack

CP Current Page: World | Monday, November 30, 2020 | Mourners attend the funeral of 43 farm workers in Zabarmari, about 20km from Maiduguri, Nigeria, on November 29, 2020 after they were killed by Boko Haram fighters in rice fields near the village of Koshobe on November 28, 2020. | Armed men on motorcycles, believed to be from the Boko Haram terrorist group, killed at least 110 farmworkers in rice fields in Nigeria’s conflict-hit Borno state. A United Nations official called it “the most violent direct attack against innocent civilians this year.”
“I am outraged and horrified by the gruesome attack against civilians,” Edward Kallon, the U.N. resident and humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria, said about the assault in the village of Koshobe and other rural communities near the northeast city of Maiduguri on Saturday, according to Bloomberg.
“At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others were wounded in this attack,” the official said.
Kallon feared that several women may..

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France’s highest court orders review of COVID-19 worship restrictions

CP Current Page: World | Monday, November 30, 2020 | Chartres Cathedral, officially known as the Cathedral of Our Lady of Chartres, a Roman Catholic cathedral located in Chartres, France. | France will have to review the restrictions it created for worship attendance to combat the spread of the coronavirus, according to the Western European nation’s highest court.
France’s State Council ordered the government on Sunday to review a law that limited church attendance to 30 in-person attendees in response to Catholic groups challenging the law.
The religious groups wanted the standard to be changed to allow 30% capacity for houses of worship, arguing that secular businesses are given looser standards during the lockdown.
“The claimants are right in saying that the measure is disproportionate in light of protecting the public’s health … thus it is a serious and illegal infringement on the freedom of worship,” stated the council, as reported by Reuters.
On Oct. 30, in response to a new wa..

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Student wins payout from British university that suspended her over pro-life views

CP Current Page: World | Monday, November 30, 2020 | Julia Rynkiewicz | A midwifery student banned from her hospital placement at Nottingham University in England won an apology and settlement from the university.
On Nov. 25, the university apologized to Julia Rynkiewicz for suspending her because of her involvement with the pro-life Students for Life Society and paid her an undisclosed amount. For four months, the university subjected her to a fitness-to-practice investigation because she was a midwife who wanted babies to be born alive. The investigations stopped her studies and left her without access to student financial aid.
Rynkiewicz served as president of Nottingham’s Students for Life. The school said she was unable to be a midwife because of material available at the society’s stall and her public association with the society. Nottingham's school policy officially supports abortion.
“One of Julia’s lecturers lodged a complaint with the university's Midwifery School..

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Pakistan: Parents of kidnapped Christian girl denied custody; child ordered to live at shelter

CP Current Page: World | Sunday, November 29, 2020 | Arzoo Raja flanked by police in Karachi, Pakistan, with Ali Azhar on far right. | Pakistan’s high court in Sindh province has freed a 13-year-old Christian girl from her abductor, a 44-year old Muslim man who forced her into an Islamic “marriage.” But instead of returning the girl to her parents, she's required to remain at a government-run shelter until she turns 18.
While the court on Monday decided not to return Arzoo Raja to her family, it also did not dismiss her father's statutory rape charges brought against her kidnapper, Ali Azhar, the family's attorney told Morning Star News.
“I believe it is a good verdict, because the court has not quashed the FIR [First Information Report] registered by Arzoo’s father, and Section 375(5) for statutory rape of a minor has been added to it, a crime punishable with life imprisonment or death sentence,” attorney Jibran Nasir told Morning Star News. “Arzoo will remain in the ..

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Egypt: Hundreds of Muslims attack church, Christians’ homes over Facebook post

CP Current Page: World | Sunday, November 29, 2020 | Mourners carry crosses and march after the funeral of Coptic Christians who were killed on Friday in Minya, Egypt, May 26, 2017. | A mob of Muslim villagers attacked the homes and shops of Coptic Christians in Egypt’s Minya governorate over rumors that a Christian man had posted a comment denigrating Islam on Facebook, according to reports.
At least one elderly woman was hospitalized for burns suffered in the fire in her home after groups close to Islamist groups used stones and Molotov cocktails to target the Coptic Orthodox community in al Barsha Thursday, according to Independent Catholic News.
The man accused of posting the comment against Islam on his personal Facebook account said that his page had been hacked.
The mob also tried to attack the church of Abou Sefin, where the congregation was celebrating the beginning of the Coptic fast, reported the U.K.-based Christian Solidarity Worldwide, a United Nations-recognized NGO that..

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