May 30, 2011- June 12, 2011 
 News In Review
 Vol 6, Issue 22
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Dear Ron,

This newsletter is available online by clicking here. The archived newsletter are also available by clicking here.

The News In Review newsletter is a service provided by Understand The Times that is a compilation of the news articles previously posted on our site . Understand The Times does not endorse these events but rather is showing the church the current events.  The purpose of posting these articles is to warn the church of deception from a Biblical perspective.

 May 21 - Middle East Quartet and EU support Obama on Israel
 Article: Israel And The Last Days

The Middle East Quartet has issued a statement in support of President Obama's vision of Israeli-Palestinian peace. Earlier, the European Union had also agreed with Obama's proposal of Israel retreating to its 1967 borders.

­According to the statement issued by the Quartet - which consists of the United Nations, the United States, the European Union and Russia - "moving forward on the basis of territory and security" is the foundation for solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Russia has confirmed its support of Israel's reverting to its 1967 borders. "Russia has been continuously advocating the creation of an independent Palestinian state," said the head of the presidential administration, Sergey Naryshkin.

The European Union also expressed its support of President Obama's proposal. Catherine Ashton, the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said she "warmly welcomes" the restoration of Israel's 1967 borders.

"We will do whatever is possible, working with our Quartet partners, to help both parties choose the path of peace and engage in successful negotiations," added Ashton.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, meeting US President Obama in Washington on Friday, rejected Obama's proposition that Israel revert to its 1967 boundaries, saying this would make his country "indefensible."

Read Full Article .... 

 May 22 - Palestinians pledge to stick to UN statehood plan
 Article: Israel And The Last Days

The Palestinians will keep up their campaign to win UN endorsement for a unilaterally declared state despite US opposition, a senior Palestinian official has said.

"Now that (Israeli Prime Minister) Benjamin Netanyahu has proved that he rejects the peace process, there is no doubt that we shall continue with the strategic objective of turning to the United Nations in September," Nabil Shaath, a senior member of the Fatah movement, told AFP late on Saturday.

Shaath, a former minister, said that the goal of the Palestinians is to win recognition by the world body of their promised state "in the 1967 borders," referring to the lines that existed before that year's Six Day War. That would mean a Palestinian state in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including Israeli-annexed Arab east Jerusalem.

In a keynote policy speech in Washington on Thursday, US President Barack Obama called for a Palestinian state based on the 1967 lines but said the Palestinian bid for UN recognition would not bring them sovereignty.

Shortly before flying to Washington for talks with Obama, Netanyahu issued a scathing rejection of the 1967 frontiers as "indefensible." He demanded that Obama reaffirm then-president George W. Bush's 2004 promise that the borders of a future Palestinian state would have to recognize the mushrooming of Israeli settlements.

An aide to Palestinian president and Fatah head Mahmud Abbas described Netanyahu's position as "an official rejection of Mr. Obama's initiative, of international legitimacy and of international law.

Read Full Article.... 

 May 23 - Death toll from Joplin tornado climbs to 116
 Article: Signs Of The Last Times

Rescue crews dug through piles of splintered houses and crushed cars Monday in a search for victims of a half-mile-wide tornado that killed at least 116 people when it blasted much of this Missouri town off the map and slammed straight into its hospital.

It was the nation's deadliest single tornado in nearly 60 years and the second major tornado disaster in less than a month.

Authorities feared the toll could rise as the full scope of the destruction comes into view: House after house reduced to slabs, cars crushed like soda cans, shaken residents roaming streets in search of missing family members. And the danger was by no means over. Fires from gas leaks burned across town, and more violent weather loomed, including the threat of hail, high winds and even more tornadoes.

"I've never seen such devastation - just block upon block upon block of homes just completely gone," said former state legislator Gary Burton who showed up to help at a volunteer center at Missouri Southern State University.

It was the nation's deadliest single twister since a June 1953 tornado in Flint, Mich. Unlike the multiple storms that killed more than 300 people last month across the South, Joplin was smashed by just one exceptionally powerful twister.

National Weather Service Director Jack Hayes said the storm was given a preliminary label as an EF4 - the second-highest rating given to twisters. The rating is assigned to storms based on the damage they cause. Hayes said the storm had winds of 190 to 198 mph. At times, it was three-quarters of a mile wide.

Last month, a ferocious pack of twisters roared across six Southern states, killing more than 300 people, more than two-thirds of them in Alabama.

Read Full Article .... 

 May 17 - Pulpit pals: Christians, Jews, Muslims plan shared worship
 Article: Ecumenical Movement - Christians Uniting With Other Religions

Religious and human rights activists are asking U.S. churches to invite Jewish and Muslim clergy to their sanctuaries to read from sacred texts next month in an initiative designed to counter anti-Muslim bigotry.

The June 26 initiative, called "Faith Shared: Uniting in Prayer and Understanding," is co-sponsored by the Interfaith Alliance and Human Rights First. Leaders of the two Washington-based groups said the event hopes to demonstrate respect for Islam in the wake of Quran burnings in recent months.

"As a Christian minister who is a pastor in a local congregation, it is important to me for our nation and our world to know that not all Christians promote hate, attack religions different from their own and seek to desecrate the scripture of others," the Rev. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance, said Tuesday.

More than 50 churches in 26 states already have committed to the initiative, including the Washington National Cathedral.

Tad Stahnke, director of policy and programs for Human Rights First, said he hopes the initiative will draw attention to religious freedom and counter negative stereotypes of Christian leaders making anti-Muslim statements.

"We want to send a message to the world," he said, "that Americans do respect religious differences and reject religious bigotry and the demonization of Islam or any other religion."

Read Full Article .... 

 May 19 - Interfaith Service at St. John's Parish in Montclair
 Artcle: Ecumencal Movement - Christians Uniting With Other Religions

This Sunday morning, May 22, at 10 a.m., the sounds of the adhan - the Muslim call to prayer - will ring out in St. John's Episcopal Church Montclair.

While there's no minaret at the church, the words of "Allahu akbar," (God is greater) will none-the-less invite both Christians and Muslims to worship side by side. During the interfaith service, verses from the Holy Qur'an will complement readings from the Holy Bible, including during Communion, embracing the traditions of both religions.

Reverend Andrew Butler, Rector of St. John's parish since September 1, 2010, decided to have this service in order to demonstrate that both Islam and Christianity stem from Abrahamic roots, as well as to dispell negative stereotypes about the Muslim faith.

"I've grown concerned about the demonization of Muslims. I want Montclair to develop an understanding of the religion." Reverend Butler stated.

In addition to Butler, speakers will include Anisa Mehdi, a scholar and journalist who will describe what it means to be a Muslim in America and Abdul-Alim Mubarak-Rowe, an assistant Imam at Masjid Waarith ud Deen in Irvington, a media consultant to the American Muslim Alliance and a journalist.

The Reverend went on to say, "We are trying to find ways to blend our community through religion. It's hard, but we can accomplish it through this organic event and working together through outreach and other ministries of compassion."

This interfaith service isn't only trying to blend religions, is also a way to invite the public to visit St. John's Episcopal Church. After the service, at 11am, conversation about Islam and Islam in America will continue.

Read Full Article .... 

 May 23 - Christian doctor who prescribed faith in Jesus fights for his job
 Article: Miscellaneous

Comment from Understand the Times:
The following article documents a situation where a Christian doctor is reprimanded for sharing his faith as a Christian. How many doctors who practice New Age healing processes (for example Deepak Chopra) are treated the same way? In the future, any person of any profession will be silenced for being a Bible believing Christian. Those, however, who are ecumenical and incorporate various religious ideas will not be questioned.

A Christian GP is facing the threat of being struck off for suggesting a patient could find solace in Jesus.  But Richard Scott said yesterday that it was worth the risk if he could 'make a stand' for his faith.  Dr Scott, 50, was placed under official investigation for talking to a patient about Jesus.

The Cambridge-educated GP, who used to be a medical missionary and surgeon in Tanzania and India, has refused to accept a formal warning from the General Medical Council, which said he risked bringing his profession into disrepute by discussing Christianity.

Dr Scott insists no guidelines were breached as religion was mentioned only during a 'consensual discussion between two adults' after he had carried out a thorough and lengthy consultation with a patient last year at his Christian-orientated practice in Margate, Kent.

The complaint was brought by the mother of the 24-year-old patient, a man who was described as 'in a rut and in need of help'. Dr Scott told him that faith in Jesus could give comfort and strength. When asked by his mother how the meeting had gone, the patient apparently replied: 'He just said I need Jesus' - prompting her to complain that Dr Scott had 'pushed religion' on her son, who nevertheless continued to receive treatment from the practice.

Dr Scott, a lay preacher, told the Mail: 'The GMC decided to take the complaint seriously, which I feel is an injustice. 'They said that by speaking about my faith I had abused my position and potentially exploited vulnerable patients.

Dr Scott added: 'By appealing against the decision, it will go to a public hearing where the GMC may warn me or decide to take matters further. But it is worth the risk as I wanted to do this because there is a bigger picture.

But Niall Dickson, chief executive of the GMC, said: 'Our guidance is clear. Doctors should not normally discuss their personal beliefs  with patients unless those beliefs are directly relevant to the patient's care. 'They also must not impose their beliefs on patients, or cause distress by the inappropriate or insensitive expression of religious, political or other beliefs or views.'

Read Full Article .... 

We hope the Weekly News In Review has been a blessing to you.

Roger Oakland

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