Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Greek Orth. Church Goes to UN on Hagia Sophia; Rips Turkey for Turning UNESCO Site to Mosque

 The Greek Orthodox Church of the United States said yesterday it is petitioning the United Nations to coerce Turkey into protecting Orthodox Christianity's cultural heritage following the Turkish government's conversion of Istanbul's Hagia Sophia from a museum into a mosque, the AP website reports today (September 30, 2020).

The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America said it was pressing the UN in the areas of cultural rights, minority rights, and freedom of religion and beliefs to hold Turkey accountable "for its deliberate policies to erase the cultural heritage of Orthodox Christians."

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a radical Muslim dictator, issued a decree in July that turned Hagia Sophia into a Muslim house of prayer. 

The structure, a UNESCO world heritage site, had served as one of Christendom's most important cathedrals and then a mosque for centuries, as well as a museum for the past 86 years.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Most in US Unwilling to Take COVID-19 Vaccine; Only 44% Would Take It, Even with $100 Bonus

 A new poll shows that mounting skepticism around a COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. continues, with less than half of people saying they'd take one -- even if they were offered $100 -- the RT website reports today (September 29, 2020).

Of the 1,000-plus adults who participated in the Axios-Ipsos poll, only 44% said they'd take a vaccine if offered the incentive  of $100.

They would be even less likely  to get the vaccine if they were the ones who had to pay $100, saying they'd be unwilling to take on the cost.

Monday, September 28, 2020

Trump to Distribute Millions of COVID-19 Tests; Will Help Reopen Schools,Return Parents to Work

President Donald Trump today (September 28, 2020) announced plans to distribute millions of Abbott Labs' 15-minute COVID-19 tests in the coming weeks, a move aimed at expanding access and helping reopen schools that are seen as key to getting parents back to work, according to the Newsmax website. 

The federal government will send out 6.5 million rapid tests to governors this week and expects to ship 100 million tests over the next several weeks, based on states' populations. 

The White House will encourage states to use the tests to screen teachers, check symptomatic children to see if they have contracted the virus, or conduct baseline surveillance.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Half of Pandemics Who Lost Job Still Have None; A New Study Shows a Third Returned to Old Job

Roughly six months after the coronavirus began to wreak havoc on the U.S. economy, about half of those who lost their jobs say they are still without one, the Vox website reports today (September 27, 2020). 

A new Pew Research Center study, which surveyed 13,200 U.S. adults in the first two weeks of August, found some limited recovery with respect to employment. 

Of all those who said they had lost a job, a third have returned to their old job, and 15 percent say they have a new job.

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Trump Names Anti-Abortion Judge to High Court; Most Likely Will Lead to Reversal of Roe V. Wade

President Donald Trump today (September 26, 2020) nominated the conservative judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, the Euro News website reports. 

A staunch Catholic, Barrett has seven children and described abortion as "always immoral."

The Republican-dominated Senate is planning to confirm her in a vote before the presidential  election on November 3 and the Democrats are powerless to stop it. 

Barrett's confirmation to the Supreme Court will provide the court with a majority of conservative justices and will probably result in the reversal of the court's shocking Roe V. Wade decision of 1973, which legalized abortions for the first time in U.S. history.


Friday, September 25, 2020

Dr. Fauci Gives "Magic" Way to Defeat COVID; Says Entire Country Must Unite, Stop Fighting

 Despite COVID-19 still thriving in several parts of the U.S., Dr. Anthony Fauci -- the nation's leading infectious disease expert -- said today (September 25, 2020) that there is one thing that could help turn the coronavirus pandemic around, but it would require all of our participation, according to the Yahoo News websitre.

"I think apart from a vaccine, which we'll have to wait a few months for, if I were to wave a wand now, it would be to get the entire country uniformly pulling together in a public health way to get these cases down," he confessed.

Fauci wants people to remember that we shouldn't be fighting each other  -- as has been the case in America, especially with the "highly charged political season with big-time, high-stakes elections."

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Trump Is Jeered by Crowd at Ginsburg Casket; Yells "Honor Her Wish!" and "Vote Him Out!"

President Donald Trump was loudly jeered and subjected to chants of "Honor her wish!" and "Vote him out!" during his visit today (September 24, 2020) to pay respects to Ruth Bader Ginsburg's casket at the Supreme Court, according to The Daily Beast website. 

The crowd was incensed by Trump's determination to ignore the late justice's dying wish to not be replaced before Election Day.

The president stood silently beside the casket with first lady Melanie Trump as the crowd voiced its disapproval.

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Pastors See Church Worship Drop after Pandemic; Most Presume Attendance Decline after It Is Over

A new survey by the Barna Group shows that a little more than half of U.S. pastors expect their worship attendance to decline after the COVID-19 pandemic is over, according to the Christian Post website.

Barna recently released the findings of  week 17 of their Church Pulse Leader Survey, which drew from a poll of 422 Protestant pastors taken September 10-18.

For week 17. 46% of pastors said they expect attendance to have "declined slightly" by the end of the crisis, while 6% responded that they expect to have "declined dramatically." 

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Coronavirus Death Toll in US Surges Past 200K; Huge Toll May Play Vital Role in Pres. Election

America's coronavirus death toll topped 200,000 today (September 22, 2020), a grim and once unimaginable milestone that is almost certain to have a significant impact on the nearby election  day, according to the NY Daily News website. 

Doctors at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore reported the bleak benchmark based on figures supplied by state health authorities.

Today's grim tally comes about eight months after the first confirmed coronavirus case in the U.S. and less than four months after the death toll topped 100,000 on May 27.

Monday, September 21, 2020

Americans Want SCOTUS Judge after 2020 Vote; Majority Prefer Vacancy Filled after Nov. Voting

A new poll shows that most American adults would prefer the vacant Supreme Court seat to be filled after the 2020 election, the Christian Post website reports today (September 21, 2020).

A Reuters poll, released yesterday of over 1,006 American adults, with a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points shows that 62% of respondents think that the vacancy left by the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg should be filled after the November election. About 23% said they disagreed. 

Eight out of 10 Democrats believe that Ginsburg's seat should not be filled until after the election, while about five out of 10 Republicans said the same.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Pope to LGBT Parents:God Loves Your Children; Parents Assist Assoc.for Info to LGBT Families

Pope Francis yesterday told a group of parents of LGBT children that "God loves your children as they are," the American Magazine website reports today (September 20, 2020).

He did so at a brief encounter with some 40 parents of LGBT children after a public audience  in the Renaissance  courtyard of San Damaso in the Vatican.

The parents are members of an Italian association, Tanda di Gionata (Jonathan's Tent), which welcomes and provides information to LGBT Christians, their families, and pastoral workers.

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Pentagon Sending about 100 US Troops into Syria; Will Hinder Russian Troops from US Eastern Area

The Pentagon is sending about 50 U.S. troops and about a dozen figthting vehicles to Syria, following a series of encounters between the U.S. and Russian militaries, the NBC News website reports today (September 19, 2020).

The troops and vehicles will serve as a show of presence to discourage the Russian military from crossing into the eastern security area where U.S. forces operate.

The commander of the U.S. Central Command told NBC News that Russian misbehavior on the ground had a Russian ground patrol entering into the eastern Syria security area -- an area they were not authorized to be in. 

Friday, September 18, 2020

High Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dies; Known for Fighting for Women, Minority Rights

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who ascended from a working class Brooklyn neighborhood into a pivotal liberal role on the nation's highest court, died today (September 18, 2020), according to the NY Daily News website.

"Our nation has lost a jurist of historic stature," said Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. today.

Ginsburg was known for fighting for the rights of women and minorities.

She was nominated to the nation's highest court in 1993 and served on it for the next 27 years.

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Trump Says US Marxist Education Hurting Kids; "Will Destroy Our Country" If It's Not Removed

President Trump painted a grim and divisive portrait of the state of American education today (September 17, 2020), claiming that elementary schools to colleges are being overrun by "radical" teachers bent on destroying "our children" with "Marxist doctrines,"  according to the NY Daily News website. 

The president was talking about an educational framework known as critical race theory, which holds that the founding of the U.S. is from slavery and racism, with their impacts still reverberating today. 

"Critical race theory and crusade against American history is toxic propaganda, ideological poison that, if not removed, will dissolve the civic bonds that tie us together," Trump said in a speech from the National Archive Museum. "It will destroy our country."

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Vandal Destroys a Jesus Statue in El Paso, Tex.; Parish Members in State of Shock, Heartbroken

 Members of the Catholic Diocese of El Paso say they were in shock yesterday after a vandal destroyed a 90-year-old statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus outside St. Patrick's Cathedral, the Washington Times website reports today (September 16, 2020).

"I am in shock and we at the Cathedral are heartbroken over such an unexpected situation," Father Trini Fuentes said. 

The vandalism continues a trend by vandals since May of targeting Christians and their symbology across the U.S.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Trump Admits He Planned to Kill Syria's Assad; Deterred by Defense Sec. Mattis from Doing So

 U.S. President Donald Trump has admitted he wanted to "take out" Syrian President Bashar Assad in 2017 but was deterred by then Defense Secretary James Mattis, the RT website reports today (September 15, 2020).

"I would have rather taken Assad out," Trump told Fox & Friends today, insisting "I had him all set,"  but "Mattis didn't want to do it."

"Mattis was against most of that stuff," Trump told the channel.

Trump went on to blame Mattis for "not doing the job in Syria or Iraq with respect to ISIS [Islamic State of Iraq and Syria]," claiming the U.S. "took out 100 percent of ISIS as well as the terrorist group's leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi," but only after Trump fired Mattis.

Monday, September 14, 2020

Trump OKs Executive Order to Slash Drug Costs; Ties Costs with Those of Lowest Foreign Nations

 The White House is moving forward with a plan to dramatically slash drug costs after talks broke down with the pharmaceutical industry's major lobby, the POLITICO website reports today (September 14, 2020).

President Donald Trump tweeted yesterday that he signed a new executive order for a "most favored nations" plan. 

The plan would tie payments for certain Medicare drugs to the significantly lower costs the treatments sell for abroad. 

Currently, prescription drugs in many foreign countries are less than half the cost as in the U.S., which has resulted in more than a million Americans purchasing their drugs from Canada and other foreign countries each year.

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Pope Addresses Wave of Protests of This Summer; Issues Appeal for Peaceful Demonstrations,Accord

Pope Francis today (September 13, 2020) addressed the wave of protests that have swept through the globe this summer -- some of which have turned violent -- issuing an appeal for peaceful demonstrations, according to the Crux website. 

"While I encourage the protestors to present their requests in a peaceful way, I appeal to all those who have public and governing responsibility to listen to the voice of their citizens." he said. 

Speaking to local Catholic communities where these protests are taking place, the pope urged faithful, "under the guidance of their pastors,. to operate in favor of dialogue, in favor of reconciliation." 

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Vatican: "Urgent" to Return to In-Person Masses; Calls Presence in Churches "Vital, Indispensable"

The Vatican said today (September 12, 2020) it was "necessary and urgent" to return to in-person Masses as soon as anti-coronavirus measures permit, according to the AP website. 

The head of the Vatican's liturgy office, Cardinal Robert Sarah, said in a letter to bishops, conferences that virtual liturgies, while useful, were no replacement for the real thing. 

He added physical presence by the faithful in churches was "vital, indispensable, and irreplaceable."

In recent weeks, Pope Francis has returned public gatherings and has celebrated a handful of public Masses before limited, socially distanced groups. 


Friday, September 11, 2020

Fauci: US Won't Return to Normalcy Until 2021; COVID-19 Vaccine Could Be Distributed by Then

 Daily life in the U.S. won't return to normal until late 2021 when a vaccine for COVID-19 could be widely distributed, Dr. Anthony Fauci said today (September 11, 2020).

In an interview on MSNBC's "Andrea Mitchell Reports," Fauci, who is the director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said he  is confident there will be a vaccine available by the end of this year or early 2021.

"But by the time you mobilize the distribution of the vaccine and get a majority or more of the population vaccinated and protected, that's likely not going to happen until the end of 2021," he said. 

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Pope Lauds PA Terror Leader Abbas in Encyclical; Associates the Terrorist and Antisemite with Jesus

 The Vatican has announced that Pope Francis will sign a new encyclical on "human fraternity" that will include praise for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas -- a known terror supporter and inciter, and a rabid antisemite -- the Clarion Project website reports today (September 10, 2020).

An encyclical -- or letter from the pope -- is a serious and important form of communication by a pope historically used to express a pope's opinion on any given issue. 

In the encyclical, Pope Francis writes: "Let us all, brothers, consider the Good Shepherd who to save His sheep bore the suffering of the Cross." 

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

US to Pull 2,200 Troops from Iraq This Month; Similar Drop in Troops to Occur in Afghanistan

The Pentagon announced today (September 9, 2020) it will reduce its presence in Iraq from 5,200 to 3,000 troops this month, according to the RT website.

The withdrawal illustrates Baghdad's progress in building its own forces.

The U.S. recognizes "the great progress the Iraqi forces have made,"  Marine General Frank McKenzie, the head of U.S. Central Command, said in a recent visit to Iraq.

The drawdown in Iraq is likely to be confirmed soon by Donald Trump, along with a similar drawdown in Afghanistan.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Video: Cath. Voting for Democrats Will Go to Hell; Priest Posts Video Ripping Pols' Abortion Backing

A video by a Catholic priest in which he condemns Democrats as "godless" and warns Catholics not to voter for them, has gained the approval of at least one American bishop, the Religion News website reports today (September 7, 2020).

"Here's a memo for clueless. baptized Catholics out there," said the Rev. James Altman , pastor of St. James the Less Catholic parish in Lacrosse, Wisconsin, in the video.

Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler, Texas endorsed the video on Twitter.

The video includes photos of former Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi -- both Roman Catholics -- who strongly support abortion, even though it is condemned by the Catholic Church.

Monday, September 7, 2020

Russia's "Sputnik V" COVID-19 Vaccine Is Flying; Approved for Public Use, 1st Anti-COVID Vaccine

The first batch of Russia's pioneering coronavirus vaccine, Sputnik V, has been approved for public use and has entered civilian circulation, the RT website reports today (September 7, 2020).

The vaccine "has undergone necessary quality tests" and "has entered civilian circulation," the Russian Ministry of Health announced today,

Today's progress makes Russia the first country to officially unveil its own coronavirus vaccine.

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Pope: Gossiping Is "Worse Plague" Than COVID; Condemns Gossiping as Destroyer of Cath.Church

Pope Francis today (September 6, 2020) urged his subjects to refrain from gossiping and instead "offer silence and prayer" during his weekly address above St. Peter's Square, according to the Mirror (British) website.

He condemned gossiping as "a worse plague" than coronavirus that could be used to divide the Roman Catholic Church during his weekly blessing.

"The devil is the great gossip. He is always saying bad things about others because he is the liar who tries to split the Church," Francis added.

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Noertheastern U. Expels 11 Freshmen for Partying; Violate COVID Social Distancing Rules, Lose $36K

Northeastern University announced yesterday it dismissed 11 first-year students after they were caught violating social distancing rules in the latest and most aggressive attempt to prevent the pandemic from disrupting plans to return to Boston's campus this fall, The Boston Globe website reports today (September 5, 2020).

The students were caught at the nearby Westin Hotel, which is being used as a temporary dorm this semester, last Wednesday night without masks and not social distancing, according to the university.

The dismissed students will not be allowed to take courses from home this semester but will be permitted to return in the spring.

They were part of a special one-semester program for freshmen that was prepaid and cost $36,500. That money will not be refunded, per university rules.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Survey: 30% of Evangel's Don't See Jesus as God; Only 48% of American Adults Believe Jesus Is God

Preliminary results of the State of Theology survey show 30% of Evangelicals and over 50% of  all American adults do not believe Jesus is God, the Christian Post website reports today (September 4, 2020). 

The poll was conducted from March 10 to 18 among 3,002 U.S. adults, including 630 professing evangelicals.

Conducted by Ligonier Ministries in collaboration with LifeWay Research, the survey found that only 48% of American adults believe a central tenet of Christianity: Jesus is God who came to earth as a man to shed His blood for the forgiveness of sin.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Trump Admin.Ends Aiding NY Subways,Schools; Strips Millions of Dollars in COVID-19 Aid Fund

Transit systems, schools, and other public facilities in New York could soon become much dirtier because of a policy change enacted by the Trump administration that will strip millions of dollars in coronavirus aid for the state, the NY Daily News website reports today (September 3, 2020).

It's a gut punch no one saw coming, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said today.

Since the outset of the pandemic, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has helped New York and other states cover the costs of coronavirus-fighting efforts.

But FEMA now says, "These are not immediate actions necessary to protect public health and safety."

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

CDC to States: Offer COVID Vaccine By Nov. 1; CDC Contracts with McKesson Co. in Huge Effort

The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told all U.S.

 governors last week to prepare for the "large-scale" distribution of a coronavirus vaccine by November 1, 2020, the NBC News website reports today (September 2, 2020).

In the August 27 letter, Dr. Robert Redfield said the agency had contracted a pharmaceutical company, McKesson, to potentially distribute hundreds of millions of vaccine doses to local health departments and medical facilities across the country in the fall.

Redfield called the effort "massive" and asked governors for their help expediting applications for distribution facilities that will be set up and operated by McKesson.

Redfield added, "If necessary. the agency asks you to consider waiving requirements that would prevent these facilities from being fully operational by November 1, 2020."

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

NYC Schools' Reopening Delayed Until Sept. 21; Deny Sept. 10 to Give Teachers More Prep Time

New York City's 1.1 million school children will not return to classrooms until late September, after Mayor Bill de Blasio said the controversial return to school will be delayed, The New York Times website reports today (September 1, 2020).

Some educators denounced the original restart date of September 10, raising concerns that the system was not ready to reopen safely.

Classes will now begin on September 21, giving officials in the country's largest school district another 10 days to prepare.