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Religion Today Blog Christian Blog and Commentary

Veronica Neffinger

Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world

Iranian police have reportedly arrested 450 Snapchat and Instagram users who have been accused of fashion crimes.

Stream.org reports that the official charge levelled against these social media users was “illegal activities in the field of fashion.”

Iran’s Islamic Republic has strict rules for dress, especially in regard to women.

“These people were carrying out immoral activities, insulted religious beliefs or had illegal activities in the field of fashion,” reported Iran’s Gherdab news source.

The punishments for these fashion crimes were severe in some cases. Six Iranian citizens were arrested and sentenced to a year in prison, as well as 91 lashes.

This punishment was meted out because the suspects were shown dancing to Pharrell Williams's song “Happy” in a video.

Stream.org reports that social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter are banned in Iran, although it is fairly easy to access them, and 40 million Iranian citizens are reportedly online.

Iran is currently trying to crack down on Iranian users of the internet, but since so many are online, this could prove difficult.

 

Publication date: August 25, 2016

A 5-year-old New Jersey boy used his savings to help members of his community in what he termed “Kindness Day.”

According to TheBlaze.com, William Evertz Jr. collected money over seven months doing chores and then decided to spend the money on others.

His mother, Tara Evertz, said William was inspired by a YouTube video.

“We watched a video of someone helping the homeless and next thing you know it kind of took off,” she said.

The first thing William and his mother did was to go to Subway to buy sandwiches for local police officers. The police made him an honorary member of the force for a day and gave him a shirt and badge.

“He wants to help people, he likes being kind,” said Lt. Chris Dubler. “When we all signed up for this job that was our thing — we want to help people, and I think he’s going to do a good job.”

William said he appreciated how the police worked to protect people and keep them safe.

William and his mother also took toys and school supplies to children at a domestic violence shelter, as well as gave a family in need $25 to help with their daycare expenses.

 

Photo courtesy: Thinkstockphotos.com

Publication date: August 25, 2016

A new study has revealed that more and more Americans are leaving church, and one of the reasons is lack of belief in miracles.

The Washington Examiner reports that a Pew Research Center study revealed that half of Americans who have left church say they no longer believe in God. The number of people in the country who don’t believe in God is also reportedly growing.

These so-called “nones” say they left church and stopped believing in God for a number of reasons, some of which include not liking organized religion, “common sense,” and believing science trumps miracles.

Representatives from the study also interviewed participants in order to determine the reason for this trend.

"About half of current religious 'nones' who were raised in a religion (49%) indicate that a lack of belief led them to move away from religion. This includes many respondents who mention 'science' as the reason they do not believe in religious teachings, including one who said 'I'm a scientist now, and I don't believe in miracles.' Others reference 'common sense,' 'logic' or a 'lack of evidence' – or simply say they do not believe in God,” researchers reported.

Other reasons people cited for leaving church and not believing in God included “Learning about evolution when I went away to college, “Too many Christians doing un-Christian things,” and “Because I think religion is not a religion anymore. It’s a business...it’s all about money.”

 

Publication date: August 25, 2016

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