Join us this Sunday as we close out the Relationships 101 series. Sunday's message is about conflict and fighting properly. What does the Bible say about how to act and react when you're in the middle of a relational struggle?Print This Post
By Joshua Rhett Miller
John Satawa, of Warren, Mich., filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court on Friday in an attempt to be allowed to put back the 8- by 8-foot nativity scene his late father built in 1945.
After receiving a complaint by the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation last December, the Road Commission of Macomb County told Satawa to remove the holiday display, citing incomplete permits. Satawa's permit application was later denied because it "clearly displays a religious message" and violated "separation of church and state," Macomb County Highway Engineer Robert Hoepfner wrote.
Satawa says he simply wants to restore the "tradition" on the median between Mound and Chicago Roads outside of St. Anne's Parish Church.
"The Nativity display has been a tradition not just for my family, but for the whole community for 63 years," Satawa told Foxnews.com in a statement. "I am disappointed the Road Commission would not stand up for our community and our Constitution and that is why I was compelled to file this lawsuit."
According to Satawa's lawsuit, St. Anne's Parish received a donation of Christmas statues in March 1945 that were too large to house inside the church — so they were moved to the public median outside. Jack Eckstein, president of the village of Warren at the time, granted permission for the move.
"As a result, a Christmas tradition was born," the lawsuit reads.
The Nativity display has been there every Christmas season since, except for one — 1996 — when there was road construction. The creche returned the following year, according to the lawsuit.
But last year, just 14 days before Christmas, Satawa received a letter from the Macomb County Road Commission instructing him to "immediately remove" the nativity scene within 30 days. Satawa removed the structure and was denied a permit when he reapplied in January. In March, he received a formal denial of his petition to erect the nativity scene because, according to county officials, it would be a violation of the First Amendment, which prohibits government from making laws "respecting an establishment of religion."
"It boils down to maintaining a tradition that's been going on for six decades and one letter received from an out-of-state radical organization," attorney Brian Rooney of the Thomas More Law Center told Foxnews.com. "We believe this shows hostility towards Christianity."
The Thomas More Law Center filed the lawsuit on Satawa's behalf, alleging the Road Commission's restriction violates his First Amendment rights and equal protection guarantee under the Fourteenth Amendment.
"We're very confident," Rooney said. "We believe the law of the Constitution is on our side."
But Ben Aloia, an attorney representing the Macomb County Road Commission, disagreed, citing Allegheny v. ACLU of Pittsburgh, in which the Supreme Court held in 1989 that a county government's Nativity scene displayed at a courthouse was an unconstitutional endorsement of religion.
"We believe that our decision is in line with that rule of law," Aloia said. "The fact is, he's never acquired a formal permit to install this Nativity scene."
Annie Laurie Gaylor, co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, said the creche is also a traffic hazard.
"You can’t see around it," she told Foxnews.com. "We are a nation of rules and laws, and that law even applies to St. Anne's Parish. I can't understand why they can't put the scene on their church grounds. They're trying to take over public property for their religious purposes, and that's not allowed."
Rooney said an emergency injunction will be filed within the next two weeks in an attempt to make sure the Nativity scene returns in time for the upcoming holiday season.
Satawa, meanwhile, says he has received support from hundreds of neighbors.
"This response is the USA I like," he said, "people that are not afraid to stand up for what is right."Print This Post
Via Fox News (Emphasis added by me)
By Joshua Rhett Miller
The shirts — intended to foster school spirit — sport a vertical blue line down the center with the words "Penn State White Out" emblazoned across the chest, forming a design that some say resembles a cross. The back of the shirt depicts the same blue line obscured by the words, "Don't be intimated … It's just me and 110,000 of my friends." Roughly 30,000 of the shirts have been sold.
Penn State says it has received six complaints about the shirt, including one from the Anti-Defamation League's Philadelphia branch, from people who say it connotes a Christian cross. The logo design also has become the focus of controversy in the student newspaper, "The Daily Collegian," which has received several letters to the editor on both sides of the issue.
Michal Berns, a junior majoring in media law and policy, said she refused to buy the $15 shirt because of its religious connotations.
"At first glance, you don't necessarily think that's what it looks like, but when you look at it more, it does look like a cross," Berns told Foxnews.com. "That's the reason I didn't purchase it."
Berns said students can purchase the shirts when they buy season tickets for the university's nationally ranked football program or during the football season at the campus bookstore and other stores. The shirts are typically worn at Penn State's annual "White Out" game, at which a crowd of 100,000 screaming Nittany Lions fans creates a virtual sea of white at Beaver Stadium.
While Berns acknowledged the shirt's single blue stripe resembles the stripe on the team's football helmet, she and others at the university's Hillel Jewish organization plan to show their school pride in other ways.
"There always has to be some sort of separation," said Berns, referring to the state-funded school and religious affiliation. "Me personally, I'm not going to buy the shirts and I know others at [Penn State Hillel] who won't, either."
Bill Mahon, vice president for university relations, said six people have contacted Penn State to voice their objections to the shirt's design.
"Six complaints is not a controversy," Mahon wrote Foxnews.com. "Students submit shirt designs to the student paper each year. Students then vote for their favorite design and they are sold in the campus bookstore."
Mahon said the design was based on the single blue stripe on the football team's helmets and will not be pulled from store shelves as some have asked. "The shirts have sold out and no changes are planned," he said.
Stephanie Bennis, a senior at the school, said she created the shirt's design in March with fellow public relations major Emily Sabolsky, and in no way did they intend to create religious overtones. Like Mahon, she said the single blue stripe is a nod to the university's football program.
"That was the entire idea," she said. "And all we thought was normally wording goes right across the chest. That's truly the reason why we did it."
Bennis said she was "very shocked" when she learned the university had received complaints about the design.
"It's just sad to see that in this day and age, the most offensive thing on a shirt can be what people see as a religious symbol," she said.
"Are we going to ban lowercase t's in the alphabet? Where do you draw the line?"
Barry Morrison, regional director of the Eastern Pennsylvania-Delaware region of the Anti-Defamation League, said the organization contacted Penn State officials last month after receiving a complaint regarding the shirt.
Morrison said the similarity to a cross appeared to "inadvertent and unintentional," but he acknowledged that some could take exception.
"This is not intended to be a cross," he said. "But some people clearly saw this connection and decided to complain about it."
Other students contacted by Foxnews.com said if there is a hidden religious message in the shirts, they haven't seen it.
"It's a little blown out of proportion," senior John Shoemaker said. "I kind of see where they're coming from, but I don't think it was designed as a religious statement."
Shoemaker, who purchased one of the shirts for $15 to wear at Penn State's loss to Iowa last month, said they're "relatively common" on the State College, Pa., campus.
Nick Mangus, a senior majoring in East Asian studies, described the controversy as "ridiculous" and said images of crosses can be seen virtually anywhere, even in "tiles on the floor."
"Honestly, I think it's basically people just trying to stir up controversy over something that's ridiculous," Mangus said. "If you don't want to buy it, don't buy it. It's that simple. You don't have to try and force everyone else to change their ways because you think it's offensive."Print This Post
In case you didn't know, Jon had no idea this video was going to play during the beginning of his message.Print This Post
Join us this Sunday as Jon continues the Relationships 101 series with The Power of Forgiveness.Print This Post
21Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, "Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?"
22Jesus answered, "I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.
23"Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him. 25Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.
26"The servant fell on his knees before him. 'Be patient with me,' he begged, 'and I will pay back everything.' 27The servant's master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.
28"But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. He grabbed him and began to choke him. 'Pay back what you owe me!' he demanded.
29"His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.'
30"But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened.
32"Then the master called the servant in. 'You wicked servant,' he said, 'I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' 34In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.
35"This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."Print This Post
The main verse of the day;
However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
The definition of love is a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.
Men, what are ways that you show love?
What are ways to not show love?
The definition of respect is to hold in esteem or honor.
Ladies, what are ways that you show respect?
What are ways to show disrespect?
After hearing the answers concerning love and respect, what do you need your loved one to understand about you?
- Determine beforehand that you will speak lovingly and respectfully regardless of how your spouse acts or speaks.
- Commit yourself to never using words of hostility or contempt, regardless of your spouse’s words or actions
- Determine to speak lovingly or respectfully because you want to revere and obey God.
- Always remember your speech or actions are your choice and your responsibility. Your spouse cannot make you say or do anything unloving or disrespectful.
- When you fail to speak words of love or respect, ask for forgiveness… first from God then from your spouse.
Join us Sunday as we continue the Relationships 101 series with the message "Men and Women - Big Difference."
Lee Thompson is going to step in for Jon this Sunday.
A far as the topic, I think I will let Lee handle that.
See you Sunday morning.
Join us Sunday as we continue the Relationships 101 series with the message "There's a Purpose."
Jon will address these relational questions:
- Are our expectations realistic?
- Is there a purpose to our relationships?
ABERDEEN, Wash. — A man walking from Texas to his hometown in Washington state has had a cross to bear for months.
James Strickland says he's been dragging a 12-foot cross from Longview, Texas, to his Aberdeen home since May.
The 39-year-old says he was praying about his troubled past when he received a message to start walking on a journey of renewal. He took along the cross, which rolls on wheels with his belongings tied near the bottom.
He expects to reach home Tuesday or Wednesday. Strickland says the trek has taken him through Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Utah and Idaho.
He says he hopes to reconcile with the mother of his two children.
Aberdeen police Capt. John Green told KXRO-AM that Strickland also has several misdemeanor warrants to clear up.Print This Post
We went to the U2 concert Saturday night compliments of great friends. Here are some observations:
- It's October 3rd and I am at an outdoor concert without a coat. That is why I live in NC.
- $40 for a T shirt?! I am so old.
- What is that weird smell?
- The huge stage is incredible. Size and technology.
- The stage adds to the concert, but U2 doesn't need it.
- Bono is in great shape. How old is this guy?
- People get distracted by their mobile phones.
- I am surprised at how many of the words I know.
- Mobile phones have replaced lighters during the encore.
- Singing 'Amazing Grace' with 60,000 people is a great experience.
- If you want to show someone the love of Jesus, carry jumper cables in your car.
We are kicking off a new series this Sunday called Relationships 101. What does the bible say about the good, the bad and the ugly of relationships? We'll dive into the simple foundations set forth in Genesis this first week. Hope to see you Sunday morning.Print This Post