May 20, 2013- May 26,2013 
 News In Review
 Vol 8, Issue 21
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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 16 - "Big Brother" is big business?
 Article: One World Government

The odds are you are not just a face in the crowd any longer. Even if your picture isn't plastered all over social networking and photo-sharing sites, facial recognition technology in public places is making it harder if not impossible to remain anonymous. Lesley Stahl reports on the new ways this technology is being used that even has one of its inventors calling it too intrusive. Her 60 Minutes report will be broadcast Sunday, May 19 at 7 p.m. ET/PT.

Professor Alessandro Acquisti of Carnegie Mellon, who researches how technology impacts privacy, stunned Stahl with an experiment. He photographed random students on the campus and in short order, not only identified several of them, but in a number of cases found their personal information, including social security numbers, just using a facial recognition program he downloaded for free. Acquisti says smart-phones will make "facial searches" as common as Google searches in the future. And nearly everybody can be subject to such prying, even those who are careful about their Internet use.

Companies are beginning to use facial recognition technology to improve business. National retailers are installing cameras, some in store mannequins, to learn more about customers, while entities like malls can put cameras in digital billboards that recognize the age and gender of their shoppers and tailor ads to them on the spot.

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 May 19 - Pope ties Church movements Mass to Pentecost
 Article: Roman Catholic Church And The Last Days

St. Peter's Square was "transformed into an open-air Cenacle," Pope Francis said after he celebrated Pentecost with Church movements. "This celebration of faith is about to end, which began yesterday with the Vigil and culminated this morning in the Eucharist.

"A renewed Pentecost that has transformed St. Peter's Square into an open-air Cenacle,"
Pope Francis said May 19 before reciting the Regina Caeli Marian prayer with around 200,000 pilgrims.

His brief reflection prior to the prayer recapped his main message for the Mass, which was that the Holy Spirit brings "newness, harmony and mission" to the lives of Christians.

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 May 13 - Poll: Many Protestant Pastors Lean Toward Young Earth Creation
 Article: Creation/Evolution - Misc.

A poll commissioned by evangelical Christian group BioLogos found that pastors hold a variety of views when it comes to the origin of life and science, though Young Earth Creation remains the most popular theory. The survey was conducted in 2012 by the Barna Group, which asked 743 Protestant pastors from churches across various Christian denominations in the U.S. to share their origin of life views. While BioLogos asked a variety of questions and is putting together a comprehensive, in-depth report in the coming months, the group released last week some key findings.

"The numbers varied widely based on a number of factors, however. Pastors of mainline churches were most likely to accept Theistic Evolution, while non-Mainline, Charismatic, and Southern Baptist pastors were overwhelmingly Young Earth Creationists. Pastors of larger churches were also more likely to accept Theistic Evolution," BioLogos said of the results.

According to the poll,
19 percent of Protestant pastors expressed certainty that the Earth is less than 10,000 years old and that God created life in its present form in six 24-hour days. Thirty-five percent said while they believe that God created life in its present form in six 24-hour days, they express qualified certainty, or doubt the "young" age of the Earth.

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 May 15 - New spectre of cloned babies: Scientists create embryos in lab that 'could grow to full term'
 Article: Cloning And Genetic Engineering

The prospect of cloned babies has moved a step closer after scientists extracted stem cells from human embryos created in a laboratory. The breakthrough could lead to customised cells to help treat and even cure a range of diseases, from Alzheimer's to multiple sclerosis.

However, it also raises the spectre of babies being cloned in laboratories. This could allow couples who lose a child to pay for the creation of a 'duplicate'.

While human embryos have been cloned before, none have had healthy stem cells extracted from them. The latest advance means scientists are now even closer to being able to clone children.

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 May 21 - Gallup Poll: Majority Now Say Gay Sex, Unwed Births, Are Morally OK
 Article: Perilous Times

A Gallup poll shows that a majority of Americans now believe that sexual relations between two men or two women, and unmarried women having a baby are morally acceptable.

In the new survey, 59 percent of American adults answered that gay or lesbian relations are morally acceptable, a 19 percentage point increase since 2001 when only 40 percent said it was morally acceptable.

Sixty percent of respondents said that having a baby outside of marriage was morally acceptable, a 15 percentage point increase since 2002 when only 45 percent said it was morally acceptable.

Read Full Article.... 

 May 16 - Natural Disasters Displaced 32.4 Million People In 2012, IDMC Study Shows
 Article: Signs Of The Last Times

More than 30 million people fled their homes in 2012 because of disasters such as floods, storms and earthquakes, a new report indicates.

According to the study by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre and the Norwegian Refugee Council, natural disasters forced 32.4 million people to flee last year, with the overwhelming majority (98 percent) due to climate- and weather-related events. While most of the victims live in developing nations, 2012 also saw an increase in environmental refugees in wealthy countries, particularly in the United States.

The report establishes that most of the damage was caused by severe flooding, with India and Nigeria suffering the brunt of the destruction. India, in particular, experienced repeated flooding during its long monsoon season. Africa suffered a record high in 2012, with 8.2 million people displaced because of natural disasters.

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 May 21 - Final Declaration from the IV Christian-Buddhist Colloquium
 Article: Ecumenical Movement - Roman Catholic Church Uniting With Other Religions

Here is the text of the Final Declaration made during the IV Buddhist-Christian Colloguium held at the Pontifical Urbaniana University on May 6th, under the theme "Inner Peace, Peace among Peoples. The Holy See made the text available yesterday afternoon.

1. The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue in collaboration with the Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Dialogue of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Italy held the fourth Buddhist-Christian Colloquium at the Pontifical Urbaniana University on 6th of May 2013 under the theme "Inner Peace, Peace among Peoples".

2. The participants were of the view that the different papers presented, formal discussions, friendly dialogues during free times contributed to deepen the mutual understanding of each other's traditions, to know better the convergence and divergence and to be aware of the mutual responsibility to maintain or to restore peace.

3. The participants coming from Italy, Japan, the Republic of China (Taiwan), Vietnam, South Korea, Thailand, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and India noted that the religious landscape of the world today is undergoing rapid changes. In that context the followers of different religious traditions can contribute to friendship and solidarity among persons and peoples.

6. In both the Christian and Buddhist journeys, therefore, inner freedom, purification of the heart, compassion and the gift of self are the essential conditions for the inner peace of the individual as well as for social peace.

7. In spite of differences, both Buddhist and Christian ethical teaching on respect for life is a search for common good based on loving kindness and compassion. The participants expressed that dialogue between Buddhists and Christians be strengthened to face new challenges such as threat to human life, poverty, hunger, endemic diseases, violence, war, etc., which belittle the sanctity of human life and poison peace in human society.

8. The participants recognized that they have a special responsibility in addressing these issues. The desire for cooperation for the well-being of humanity ought to spring from the depth of spiritual experiences. Only inner peace can transform the human heart and make one see in his/her neighbour another brother and sister. If we really want to build a world of peace, it is vitally important that we join forces to educate people, especially the young, to seek peace, to live in peace and to risk working for peace.

9 The colloquium concluded with the affirmation that it is love which brings or restores peace to human hearts and establishes it in our midst. The participants also observed that the path of peace is difficult; it demands courage, patience, perseverance, determination and sacrifice. They consider dialogue a priority and a sign of hope. It must continue!

Read Full Article.... 

 May 22 - Pope says no to intolerance, everyone can and must do good, even atheists
 Article: One World Religion

Man, who was created in God's image "must" do good. This concerns us all, independently of ideologies and religions, even atheists, for the Lord "redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ; all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! 'Father, what about the atheists?' Even atheists. Everyone!" During the Mass he celebrates every morning at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, which he carried out this morning together with Maronite Patriarch Bechara Boutros Rai, Pope Francis spoke about doing good as a principle that unites all humanity.

The pontiff began his reflection with today's Gospel about the disciples who wanted to prevent a person from outside their group from doing good. "They complain" because they say, "If he is not one of us, he cannot do good. If he is not of our party, he cannot do good." But Jesus corrected them. 'Do not stop him,' he said. 'Let him do good'."

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

Roger Oakland

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