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David Yonggi Cho, Founder Of World’s Largest Megachurch, Convicted Of Embezzling $12 Million

Yoido Full Gospel Church, the largest megachurch in the worldDavid Yonggi Cho, founder of South Korea’s Yoido Full Gospel Church, has been sentenced to three years in prison for embezzling $12 million in church funds, Christianity Today reported on Monday. Allegations arose in November of last year when 30 church elders held a press conference accusing Cho and his family of stealing millions in church donations dating back to the 1990s. The elders enumerated multiple instances of Cho’s dishonesty that involved him borrowing and never returning funds, acquiring enormous church donations without disclosing what they were being used toward and even taking an $18 million severance pay when he stepped down as head pastor in 2008. [Read more]

Meet the Public Schools Where Students May Be Required to Pray

127999252[1]The Alabama House of Representatives is issuing bills of biblical proportions—sparking national controversy over legislation in the second-most religious state. A week after lawmakers approved a proposed constitutional amendment to allow the Ten Commandments to be displayed in public buildings—so long as they share space with other historic documents—a measure requiring 15 minutes of teacher-led prayer in school was passed. Rep. Steve Hurst, R-Munford, sponsored the bill to require teachers to recite—verbatim, at the start of classes each day—the opening prayers said before U.S. House or Senate meetings. [Read more]

Federal Judge Rules Religious Memorial Unconstitutional

elsinore-275x300[1]A federal judge ruled today that a planned religious war memorial by the city of Lake Elsinore, CA at the city-owned baseball stadium can’t be built because it “violates both the U.S. Constitution’s Establishment Clause and California’s Establishment and No Preference Clauses.” The planned monument depicts a soldier kneeling in prayer before a Christian cross. The suit, American Humanist Association v. City of Lake Elsinore, was filed by the Appignani Humanist Legal Center in May 2013. A preliminary injunction against the city was issued by U.S. District Court Judge Stephen V. Wilson in July 2013 and stopped activity until the final ruling was handed down. [Read more]

Why We Sued Bladensburg, MD Over a 40-Foot Cross

bladensburg_cross1-300x216[1]At the core of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause is the principle that the government must not favor or prefer some religions over others, or religion over non-religion. No matter how small the preference may seem to some, particularly to adherents of the favored religion, the framers of the Constitution believed that “The breach of neutrality that is today a trickling stream may all too soon become a raging torrent.” When the government erects an exclusively Christian monument on government property, it violates this central command of the Establishment Clause by sending a clear message that Christianity is the preferred religion over all others. [Read more]

CPAC Reverses Decision, Will Not Allow Atheist Group at Conservative Conference

120323044546-david-silverman-2-story-top[1]Organizers for the 2014 Conservative Political Action Conference will not allow American Atheists to have an exhibition booth at the conservative conference, the group’s spokeswoman said Tuesday. The decision comes just hours after American Atheists, the outspoken organization that advocates for atheists nationwide, announced that it would have a booth at the event. [Read more]

The Long, Sordid History Of Discrimination Against Christians in America

Many of you of you may have heard that Christians have had their freedom trampled upon – again – because AZ Governor Brewer vetoed a bill that would have legalized the ability to discriminate a Christian’s god-given right to refuse to do business with icky homosexuals anyone on the basis of their religious convictions.  The first amendment of the Constitution allegedly protects the religious freedom of all Americans. [Read more]

OMG GOP: Everything In The Republican Party Is All About God

U.S.-Constitution-U.S.-Flag-bible[1]Remember once upon a time when the GOP stood for something rather than against pretty much everything? Remember when sanity played a part in Republican political deliberations? Remember the days before the Grand Old Party became God’s Own Party? Look at the 1960 Republican Platform. Take a deep breath. Remind yourself that God had only been in the pledge of allegiance for six years, since 1954. Let your breath out slowly: God gets one mention. [Read more]

Can We Please Stop With The “Complicit In Their Sin” Nonsense? 

The internet is an exhausting place. The insular and incestual nature of social media allows absurd logic to be transformed into divine revelation without a second thought. [Read more]

How Liberty University Creates Creationists

As a Christian professor who has tangled with evangelical institutions over evolution, I am often invited to don the mantle of “heretic.” The invitation typically comes in the form of an interview in which I am asked to respond to questions that will identify me as a liberal-throw-the-bible-under-the-bus lost soul who has no business calling himself a Christian. [Read more]

. . . for fun . . .

Sarah Palin at Liberty University – An Atheist Strikes Back