The ongoing controversy over the Shroud of Turin has taken an interesting new turn, with a researcher claiming to have found text concealed in the shroud that would place its origins in the first century A.D.
After decades of helping to place children in foster homes, Catholic Charities for the Diocese of Springfield, Illinois, announced on November 14 that it would be transferring all of its current cases to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). Across the state, Catholic Charities and the Evangelical Child and Family Agency in Wheaton found that they would no longer be able to continue playing a role in placing children in foster care because the state government was going to require them to place children in the homes of same-sex couples — a practice that both Roman Catholics and Evangelicals believe to be contrary to their faith.
Facing criticism from a prominent leader of the Roman Catholic Church because of the President’s unwillingness to uphold federal laws defending traditional marriage, the Obama administration appears bent on supporting same-sex unions — while simply ignoring both law and public opinion.
As the Obama Administration continues the efforts of the radical Left to redefine terms such as “marriage” and “family” to the point where they have been emptied of their historic meaning, traditionalists are becoming increasingly vocal. New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan’s (left) September 26 talk — “The Ring Makes a Difference” — is one of the most prominent statements in opposition to such efforts at undermining the historic, traditional understanding of marriage. The archbishop denounced the effort to ‘redefine’ marriage, declaring the effort to promulgate the notion of “same-sex” marriage as an “ominous threat to religious liberty”.
A new data point has been entered in the catalog of leading indicators of the narcissism devouring Western civilization: A new study by the Pew Research Center indicates that 39 percent of Americans believe that marriage is becoming obsolete.
That different people have different understandings of the nature of God is far from news, but two sociology professors at Baylor University believe they have found a newsworthy angle on this old story and have made it the basis of a book, America’s Four Gods.
Constitutionalists are expressing their disappointment, and even outrage, over the decision by the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association (ABA) to openly advocate the legalization of homosexual ‘marriage’ on the federal level.
For Mosab Hassan Yousef, the problem for his fellow Palestinians is simple: “The problem is with their God. They need to be liberated from their God. He is their biggest enemy. It has been 1,400 years they have been lied to.” The sentiment is hardly unique among observers of Islam, but it is striking given Mr. Yousef’s background as a former leader of the terrorist organization Hamas.
It appears that the economic downturn is having an effect on almost all sectors of the global economy — including, to a small degree, the abortion industry.
According to the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM):
International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) recently released its annual performance report for 2008-2009. Despite an economic downturn and a slight decrease in annual income, the abortion industry giant boasts of increased activity across all of its lines of work, including condom distribution, advocacy and abortion services.
IPPF’s overall income for 2008 was US$119.7 million, down from over $120 million the previous year. While IPPF's total financial intake dipped, its abortion business boomed.
The modest decrease in IPPF revenues did not represent a reduction in the number of abortions provided; instead, the IPPF reported a massive increase.
The organization provided almost 428,000 “abortion services” to young people alone, with a staggering 1,134,549 total number of such services — almost double the number from 2007 — across the globe.
Despite an increase in abortion services, IPPF remains unsatisfied with the figure, arguing that "in comparison to other types of services provided by IPPF Member Associations, these figures remain low and indicate that much needs to be done in terms of future investment in this area if IPPF is to meet its objectives of providing women with the choice and right to safe abortion when faced with an unwanted pregnancy."
So-called “family planning” — both through contraceptives or abortion — has proven profitable for IPPF and Marie Stopes International. Such organizations have stressed that “population control” is important for the environment and the battle against “climate change.” Paradoxically, while their efforts thus appear to be intended to significantly reduce the number of human beings in the world even as such efforts are billed as promoting the health of the species. Thus the IPPF is working to gain financial support from the United States and the United Nations to expand its work throughout the world. According to C-FAM:
The [IPPF] report laments the "dramatic decrease in funding for family planning" from international donors and claims that the drop "represents a decline in donor interest rather than a decline in need." IPPF intends to focus its future work on securing sustainable funding for its activities by capitalizing on statements made by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on family planning funding, and on the Obama administration's repeal of the Mexico City policy so that funding to "international sexual and reproductive health organizations" will be restored.
IPPF views these developments as part of a "growing international interest" which "needs to be seized upon in order to drive forward the agenda for universal access to reproductive health." IPPF will be focusing on using the "emerging momentum around maternal health to secure new support and financing" to fund abortion growth.