A Phoenix pastor who was fined over $12,000 and sentenced to 60 days in jail after he refused to close down a Bible study at his home began his incarceration July 9.
The Rev. Michael Salman's conflict with the city of Phoenix began in 2008 when he was ordered to comply with code requirements for a church after his neighbors began complaining about a weekly Bible study he held on his property. According to the Phoenix New Times, up to 50 people would gather at a gazebo in Salman’s backyard, which prompted the city to call the gathering a church and cite him for several zoning and fire-code violations, ultimately slapping him with the fine and jail time. Additionally, he was told he could have not more than a dozen people on his property at one time.
Days after the Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) voted to maintain its definition of marriage as between a man and a woman, America’s main Episcopal denomination pulled out all the stops on homosexual behavior, approving an official prayer service for blessing same-sex partnerships and clearing the way for ordaining transgendered individuals for ministry.
The Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA), one of the nation’s most liberal and drifting denominations, has voted to maintain, for the time being, its definition of marriage as “a civil contract between a man and a woman,” narrowly defeating a proposal forwarded at its 220th General Assembly to change the definition to “a covenant between two people.” The 52-percent margin of victory for maintaining a scriptural definition of marriage reflects the division that exists in the mainline denomination, which has been pressured for years by homosexual activists among its clergy and membership to embrace homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle.
Concluding the Catholic bishops' "Fortnight for Freedom," Archbishop Charles Chaput told the crowd of 4,500 assembled at the Basilica Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. that the "Caesar" in our nation's capital needs to be reminded that our rights are the gift of God and not the government.