| Hindus force Christians to 'reconvert'
May 12, 2007 © 2007 WorldNetDaily.com
Attack is just a part of increasing worldwide antagonism. Hindus have confronted a group of Christian evangelists, forcing them into a nearby village temple to perform a ritual to "reconvert" them to the Hindu religion, according to a new report from the Voice of the Martyrs which is documenting some of the increasing persecution by Hindus around the world.
While this most recent physical attack was reported by VOM sources inside the Indian state of Orissa, other attacks – albeit verbal – also have reached into the United States.
WND recently reported that Hindus have been launching a series of attacks against Christian organizations dedicated to promoting the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
A report from the Hindu American Foundation accused a long list of Christian organizations, including some providing aid in India, of promoting hatred.
"The proliferation of websites promoting religious hatred is an unfortunate consequence of the universality of access to the internet," said Vinay Vallabh, the lead author of the report.
Among those targeted verbally included the Southern Baptists' missions board, Gospel for Asia and the Minnesota-based Olive Tree Ministries, which aims its ministry at teaching Christians about their beliefs.
"We must vigorously identify, condemn and counter those who use the Internet to espouse chauvinism and bigotry over the principles of pluralism and tolerance," Vallabh said.
While the attacks in the United States have so far remained verbal, those within India almost always result in physical violence, according to VOM.
In Orissa, more than 15 Hindus stopped a small number of Christian evangelists on a village road, verbally abused them, and then forced them into the local temple for the ritual, the report said.
Sources within India told VOM that the evangelists were witnessing and handing out New Testaments and Gospel tracts.
"When chaos broke out, the extremists took the evangelists to the police who put them in jail … and confiscated more than 30 New Testaments and Gospel tracts," the report said.
A short time later, in Andra Pradesh state, a mob of Hindus attacked a pastor and a team of women evangelists, VOM sources reported.
"As believers completed distributing literature, Hindu extremists first started beating [Pastor David] and then assaulted the ladies sitting in the car," the sources said. "Some Muslim women joined the attack and started verbally abusing the women.
"They asked Sister Sarita why she was working to convert people to Christianity and yet she looked Muslim," the sources said. The Christian literature was burned, they reported.
In yet another recent violent attack, VOM sources said two Christian leaders were attacked and beaten by Hindus in Maharashtra state. Local media reports said they were accused of converting Hindus to Christianity before they were attacked.
"It's highly shameful. It's as if the [extremists' organization] just does not understand the concept of law and order," Congress leader Rajiv Shukla told area media.
There have been many other reports of pastors and leaders being beaten for representing Christ in India. Voice of the Martyrs Canada noted just a few:
A Christian worker identified as Pawar was attacked in his home.
Rev. P. Abraham and a college professor were seriously hurt while returning from a church meeting.
Evangelists from Salem Voice Ministries were attacked and beaten by militants in Kerala state.
The incidents are being reported even as Indian states adopt various pieces of "freedom" legislation concerning religion.
"Rajasthan State has a so-called 'Freedom of Religion Bill' that is used as a tool in the hands of fundamentalists to harass Christians," said VOM contacts, who report on the various attacks, discriminations and persecutions of Christians because of their beliefs.
"The cases of anti-Christian attacks in this area keep increasing, and the State Administration turns a blind eye to the persecution," they said, according to The Voice of the Martyrs.
"The situation for our brothers and sisters in India is deteriorating," VOM spokesman Todd Nettleton said. "But God is faithful, and even in these difficult times with so much persecution, the church there is growing. We are thankful for the courageous example of Indian Christians."
Voice of the Martyrs is a non-profit, interdenominational ministry working worldwide to help Christians who are persecuted for their faith, and to educate the world about that persecution. Its headquarters are in Bartlesville, Okla., and it has 30 affiliated international offices.
It was launched by the late Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, who started smuggling Russian Gospels into Russia in 1947, just months before Richard was abducted and imprisoned in Romania where he was tortured for his refusal to recant Christianity.
He eventually was released in 1964 and the next year he testified about the persecution of Christians before the U.S. Senate's Internal Security Subcommittee, stripping to the waist to show the deep torture wound scars on his body.
The group that later was renamed The Voice of the Martyrs was organized in 1967, when his book, "Tortured for Christ," was released.
Chapel cross issue stands 5,000 to 1, but who's counting?
Students, alums still trying to convince college prez to restore historic symbol
Posted: November 29, 2006 © 2006 WorldNetDaily.com
The dispute over the placement of a historic cross in the Wren Chapel at William & Mary College now stands at more than 5,000 people seeking the restoration of the antique, and one against, but who's counting?
The students and alums who have assembled in a group called SaveTheWrenCross.org have confirmed that their online petition has collected, as of late yesterday, 5,211 signatures from students, alums and friends of the Virginia university in support of restoring a bronze cross that had been donated to the school not quite a century ago.
They recently were unsuccessful in a lobbying campaign to have the school's board address the situation that was created on orders from Gene Nichol, the president, who reversed a long-standing policy that allowed the cross to be removed if secular events were planned in the historic facility. His new procedure requires the cross to be in storage UNLESS someone specifically requests it for an event.
Now the student group has told the Hampton Roads Daily Press that under a Freedom of Information Act request, the school was able to produce a single letter from someone with a concern about the cross being in the chapel.
William and Mary spokesman Brian Whitson told the newspaper in addition to that letter, there were "a number" of people who spoke directly to the president, but those comments were unrecorded and undocumented.
Nichol decided in October to remove the cross, because he wanted the building to be more welcoming to students of differing faiths. The cross had been on the altar since the 1930s but now is in storage.
But the coalition this week renewed its call for the cross to be returned, because of the lack of evidence that there was a desire to remove it.
Whitson said most of the conversations Nichol had were in person, and some people talked to him after he wrote a guest column in a student publication mentioning the chapel.
The president earlier this month used his appearance before the school's Board of Visitors to defend his actions in ordering the removal of the cross, but board members were given no opportunity to consider the actions or respond, officials said.
College spokesman Brian Whitson told WND that President Gene Nichol "did make some remarks during a regular report to the board" but since a petition drive asking the school to restore the cross to the chapel was not on the board's agenda, no action was taken.
WND broke the story on Oct. 27 that the two-foot-tall, century-old cross had been removed on the order of school managers.
Nichol then went before the board defended his decision. In his address, he said, "the display of a Christian cross – the most potent symbol of my own religion – in the heart of our most important building – sends an unmistakable message that the Chapel belongs more fully to some of us than to others."
That, he said, is bad for the school.
"I make no pretense that all will agree with these sentiments. The emotions and values touched by this dispute are deeply felt," he said. "I have been pleased to learn that students of disparate religions have reported using the Chapel for worship and contemplation for the first time."
Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor did not return a message left by WND seeking a comment. She recently was named chancellor of the college.
It was during her tenure in the Supreme Court that a growing intolerance by the court for religious symbols – particularly Christian symbols – in public places became evident.
The petitioners are objecting to the policy change that removes the cross from the Wren Chapel, a 274-year-old facility used for both religious and secular events on campus.
"We, the undersigned students and alumni of the College, and concerned citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia, disagree with your order to remove the Wren Cross from display on the Wren Chapel altar," the petition says.
"The Wren Cross was given to Wren Chapel by Williamsburg neighbor Burton Parish Episcopal Church in the 1930s and has been a fixture on the altar ever since that time. Before your order, the policy was that if a group or individual using the Wren Chapel desired to not have the Wren Cross on display during their use of the Wren Chapel, then the Wren Cross was removed during such event and then returned to the altar.
"We petition you to rescind your October 2006 order and return to the policy that had governed the display of the Wren Cross prior to your inauguration as the 26th President of the College on April 7, 2006."
Vince Haley, a 1988 graduate, set up the website and launched the campaign when he found out what had happened.
"In the name of tolerance, we have intolerance; in the name of welcoming, we have hostility, and in the name of unity, we now have division," said junior Joe Luppino-Esposito.
| America's code of silence
November 20, 2006 - By Chuck Norris - © 2006
Don't Speak About Religion And Politics? Over the past couple of years there has been much debate over the civil display of religious inscriptions, like the Ten Commandments (also called the Decalogue).
I was shocked to read this past week Bob Unruh's exclusives on WND about how the U.S. Supreme Court is even now silencing the truths about the Commandments in its own building.
People often say to stay clear of discussing religion and politics. True patriots don't do that. That is why I will address both in this article.
Revolutionary Thought about the Decalogue
I've learned some things recently about the Ten Commandments and the foundations of our country, excellently documented by David Barton and Wall Builders
Let me share just a few with you.
Noah Webster, the man personally responsible for Art. I, Sec. 8, paragraph 8, of the U. S. Constitution, explained two centuries ago: ''The duties of men are summarily comprised in the Ten Commandments, consisting of two tables; one comprehending the duties which we owe immediately to God – the other, the duties we owe to our fellow men.''
John Quincy Adams, who fought during the Revolution, served under four presidents before becoming one, and who was nominated (but declined) a position on the U. S. Supreme Court under President Madison, similarly declared: ''The law given from Sinai was a civil and municipal as well as a moral and religious code; it contained many statutes ... of universal application-laws essential to the existence of men in society, and most of which have been enacted by every nation which ever professed any code of laws.''
John Witherspoon, president of Princeton and signer of the Declaration, and one who served on over one hundred committees while in Congress, declared: ''The Ten Commandments .. are the sum of the moral law.''
The fact is our Founding Fathers introduced the tenets of the Ten Commandments not only into their families but into law, to promote civility and morality for everyone.
God's Law and the Law of the Land
Of course our founders were merely passing along the religious and moral baton, as the Colonialists handed it to them.
The proof of that is found in the fact that every early American Colony (all thirteen except Rhode Island under Roger Williams) incorporated the complete Decalogue into its own civil code of laws.
For example, the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, established in 1638-39 as the first written constitution in America and considered the direct predecessor of the U. S. Constitution, stated that the governor and his council of six elected officials would ''have power to administer justice according to the laws here established; and for want thereof according to the rule of the word of God.''
Even in 1638, the Rhode Island government adopted ''all those perfect and most absolute laws of His, given us in His holy word of truth, to be guided and judged thereby. Exod. 24. 3, 4; 2 Chron. II. 3; 2 Kings. II. 17.''
The following year, in 1639, the New Haven Colony unanimously adopted its ''Fundamental Articles'' to govern that Colony as well with ''the Scriptures.''
From Pride to Silence
Historians, government officials, and even our courts used to proudly declare our country's relationship with the Ten Commandments.
As late as 1917, the Supreme Court of North Carolina declared:
Our laws are founded upon the Decalogue, not that every case can be exactly decided according to what is there enjoined, but we can never safely depart from this short, but great, declaration of moral principles, without founding the law upon the sand instead of upon the eternal rock of justice and equity.
In 1950, the Florida Supreme Court similarly made known:
A people unschooled about the sovereignty of God, the Ten Commandments, and the ethics of Jesus, could never have evolved the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution. There is not one solitary fundamental principle of our democratic policy that did not stem directly from the basic moral concepts as embodied in the Decalogue ...
Unfortunately, America's once code of conduct has now turned into a code of silence!
The Ten Amendments?
It doesn't take a historian to figure out that the Ten Commandments and its law giver (Moses) played a very significant role in the moral and civil foundations of our nation.
Their influence was so profound that their imagery was indelibly displayed upon many civil structures and monuments, both state and federal.
Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin created a seal for the new United States, each separately proposing Moses and the Exodus prominently in the symbol.
In the U.S. House of Representatives, Moses is the only one of twenty-three law givers facing with a full-frontal view, still staring down on the proceedings.
Even on the U.S. Supreme Court, there are six depictions of Moses and the Ten Commandments, though, as WND recently reported, tourists are now being told there is only one, and that the tablets etched with the Roman Numerals I-V and VI-X now depict the ''Ten Amendments'' or the Bill of Rights.
Such blatant educational oversight is one of the reasons I've joined with The National Council on Bible Curriculum to bring a state certified Bible course (elective) into the public schools nationwide. You can join us.
Follow Our Fathers
Friends, I am a patriot and an optimist at heart. I must admit, however, that recent attempts these past few years to suppress the truths about our country's heritage are raising even my blood pressure.
I believe the voices of our Fathers echo down through the generations in hope of helping us remedy the rampant degradation in our nation.
I, as with many of you, still believe we can remain a great country, but that will only be accomplished by rising up new generations of decent, law-abiding, people-loving, and God-fearing citizens.
And how can we create such a society?
I believe our Founding Fathers had the answer: by not being afraid to establish some common absolutes, a code of conduct, like the Ten Commandments.
Chuck Norris is the star of more than 20 films and the long-running TV series "Walker, Texas Ranger." His book, "Against All Odds," tells the inspirational story of how he overcame abject poverty from childhood, the effects of his father's alcoholism and desertion of the family, and his own shyness and lack of strength and ability early in his life. Learn more about his life and ministry at his official website,
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