Thursday, June 12, 2014

Poland's PM Says Doctors Must Perform Abortions; Iraqi City-Apocalyptic” Murder, Terror ...more

Poland's PM Says Doctors Must Perform Abortions Despite Christian Belief
Poland's prime minister spoke out Tuesday regarding a nationwide abortion debate after a Catholic doctor refused to perform the life-ending procedure on a patient, even though the fetus had severe abnormalities.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk said in a statement Tuesday that the well-known Warsaw obstetrician Bogdan Chazan must choose the law over his faith after the doctor refused to perform an abortion on a fetus who reportedly had severe physical and brain abnormalities.

"Regardless of what his conscience is telling him, [a doctor] must carry out the law," Tusk said in a statement, according to The Associated Press. "Every patient must be sure that […] the doctor will perform all procedures in accordance with the law and in accordance with his duties."...

Is same-sex marriage destroying the United Methodist Church?  "Irreconcilable" disagreement over same-sex unions is once again prompting debate over splitting the historic United Methodist Church (UMC), one of America's largest denominations.

"If we are one church, we cannot act as if we are two. If, in reality, we are two churches, it may not be wise to pretend any longer that we are one," concludes a statement last month from 80 traditionalists from across the UMC, which has 7.7 million U.S. members. (An additional 4.4 million members are overseas.)...
Presbyterians Decline while Other Churches Grow

Four Russian Bombers Flew Within 50 Miles Of The California Coast  Four Russian strategic bombers triggered U.S. air defense systems while conducting practice bombing runs near Alaska this week, with two of the Tu-95 Bear H aircraft coming within 50 miles of the California coast, the North American Aerospace Defense Command (Norad) confirmed Wednesday...

Christian Refugees Flood Out of Iraqi City; Trapped Residents Describe “Apocalyptic” Murder, Terror
Bodies of Christian children and their parents litter the chaotic streets of Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, as violent Muslim extremists have seized a terrorized city Iraqi Christians once considered their last safe refuge.

“Very critical and even apocalyptic,” was an emailed description from Catholic Priest Najeeb Michaeel who signed off abruptly, saying armed extremists had surrounded the convent to which he had fled.

“Most of the inhabitants of the city have already abandoned their houses and fled into the villages,” wrote the Dominican friar. “Many thousands of armed men from the Islamic Groups of Da’ash have attacked the city of Mosul for the last two days. They have assassinated adults and children. The bodies have been left in the streets and in the houses by the hundreds, without pity...
The cleansing of Iraq’s Christians is entering its end game

India: A looming new arena for religious persecution
...For India’s Christians, one the greatest dangers of the new Hindu nationalist government is the high probability of a national anti-conversion law. Shah reported that Modi “is on record expressing hostility to Christian conversion.” Sahar Chaudry of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom in a later presentation, noted that state anti-conversion laws generally require that the government “assess the legality” of any particular conversion and provide for fines or imprisonment for those who “force, fraud or induce to convert another person.” They also violate international standards (such as Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which guarantees religious freedom), particularly in their requirement that the government assess the validity of conversions and also in favoring those converting to Hinduism and disfavoring those converting out of Hinduism. The definition of “forced conversion” is so broad in these laws, Chaudry said, that such a statement as “God will welcome you in His house at the end of days” can be interpreted as an effort at forced conversion. Religious charity can also be interpreted as forced conversion. She pointed out that a national law establishes “strict regulations” on donations from foreign Christian groups to their fellow Christians in India, a law which is consistently used to prevent Indian Christians from receiving such money. Shah also noted that anti-conversion laws “provide the context that legitimizes nonstate groups to pressure people who are seen as converting.”...

Why Did the IRS Give the FBI 1.1 Million Pages of Taxpayer Info from Non-Profits?  ...
During the course of its probe into the IRS tea party targeting scandal, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said it learned the tax agency sent 1.1 million pages of tax return data about 501(c)(4) organizations to the FBI just before the 2010 midterms, Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) wrote in a letter to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.

The IRS responded that it identified issues with 33 tax returns out of more than 12,000 that included confidential taxpayer information. The majority of those groups “do not appear to have any connection to political activity,” the IRS said.

The two Republicans said they are “extremely troubled by this new information, and by the fact that the IRS has withheld it from the Committee for over a year,” noting that despite two subpoenas the IRS has not “produced material relating to these 21 disks and all associated information.”...


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