U.S. needs ‘interagency strategy’ for global freedom

July 24 2015 by Art Toalston, Baptist Press

The “tragic, global crisis in religious persecution, violence, and terrorism” requires America to greatly strengthen its strategies, a letter to top congressional leaders declares, signed by a diverse group of religious, academic and public policy figures. Among the 31 signatories are Russell Moore ...

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U.S.-Iran prisoner swaps challenged

July 23 2015 by David Roach, Baptist Press

Though America’s release of four Iranian prisoners in 2012-13 was viewed by some as reciprocation for Iran’s release of three American hikers, a Wall Street Journal report suggests the prisoner releases were also related to a private series of negotiations that paved the way for this month’s nuclear agreement.

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U.S. church helps start an English center in Middle East

July 23 2015 by Brian Andrews, IMB Connecting

Joel started teaching English in a small, Middle Eastern village after he got the idea from Carter,* a journeyman who taught English in a nearby city. Carter saw an opportunity to invest in Joel’s village through a children’s English camp. Six months later a volunteer team from Carter’s home church arrived ...

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Alaska church brings laughter and God’s love to Syrian refugees

July 17 2015 by Evelyn Adamson, IMB Connecting

Amelia had raised money to attend an Acteens camp, but when the camp was cancelled, she then looked for an overseas trip. One night at church, Amelia listened to a couple share about the Syrian refugee crisis, and she made up her mind that her trip would be spent serving them.

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Religious freedom key to global security, experts say

July 17 2015 by Sara Weissman, Religion News Service

According to a recent Pew Research Center report, an estimated 77 percent of the world’s population lives in countries where religious freedom is “highly” or “very highly” restricted. The Religious Freedom Project hosted an all-day conference on religious freedom at Georgetown University on July 16.

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Survey: American evangelicals stand behind Israel

July 16 2015 by Bob Smietana, LifeWay Research

American evangelicals remain among the strongest supporters of Israel. Among pastors, 80 percent say Christians need to support Israel. Those are among the findings of a study of American attitudes toward Israel and the Bible released by LifeWay Research July 14. Researchers found evangelicals see a close tie between God and Israel.

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Iran deal: persecuted church ‘left behind’

July 15 2015 by David Roach, Baptist Press

The nuclear deal struck by Iran and six world powers led by the United States has drawn criticism from evangelicals for its potential ill effects on Israel and persecuted Christians in the Persian nation. The American Center for Law and Justice lamented that the deal …

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Iran grants imprisoned pastor Fathi early release

July 13 2015 by Baptist Press staff

Pastor Farshid Fathi, imprisoned in Iran for his faith since 2010, has been granted a Dec. 10 release from the notoriously brutal Rajai Shahr prison, two years earlier than expected, Elam Ministries has announced. Fathi had been imprisoned since his arrest the day after Christmas 2010 at his home …

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Bosnian immigrant finds more than American dream

July 13 2015 by Karen Pearce, Baptist Press

Although being Baptist is a common thing in Jasmine’s current home state of Louisiana, it is quite unusual in her home country. She grew up in Bosnia where Islam, Orthodoxy and Catholicism vie for prominence. She was born into a Muslim family – her grandfather was an imam.

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Evangelicals support Israel, disagree on why

July 10 2015 by David Roach, Baptist Press

With Israel in the news related to Iran nuclear negotiations and the formation of a coalition government following the reelection of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in March, conservative evangelicals largely agree that Christians should support the Jewish state. But they don’t agree on the reason for that support.

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