Pope Francis said on Saturday the spate of conflicts around the globe today were effectively a “piecemeal” Third World War, condemning the arms trade and “plotters of terrorism” sowing death and destruction. “Humanity needs to weep and this is the time to weep,” Francis said in the homily of a Mass during a visit to Italy’s largest war memorial, a large, Fascist-era monument where more than 100,000 soldiers who died in World War One are buried.The pope began his brief visit to northern Italy by first praying in a nearby, separate cemetery for some 15,000 soldiers from five nations of the Austro-Hungarian empire which were on the losing side of the Great War that broke out 100 years ago. Full Story
“Chris, you have cancer.” Not quite the words I was expecting to hear when I landed in Sydney, Australia, for our annual Hillsong conference on June 27 this year. It was 9 a.m. in Australia, and my doctor in the U.S. had called to give me the results of the thyroid biopsy I had done before boarding my flight to Australia. The C word. That word normally sends fear, dread and terror surging into the hearts of people. It sounds so final. Terminal. It seems like everyone, everywhere has known someone, somewhere who has, or has had, cancer. … I knew a weapon had been forged against me. I don’t believe that sickness comes from God, because God is good and does good; but I know that we are in a spiritual battle and that bad things can happen to good people because we live in a fallen world. The devil came for my jugular, my voice. He wanted to silence me and sent a full-on assault to bombard and overwhelm me. I had received one negative diagnosis after another. It was relentless. His plan was to fill me with fear so that he could deactivate my faith. Fear cripples, immobilizes and paralyzes us. It causes us to pull back from God instead of pressing in to Him and His Word, to speak doubt and unbelief instead of faith. To forget His promises, instead of remembering His faithfulness. To see the facts, obstacles and giants instead of the truth of His Word. To react rather than respond. Fear simply shuts us down, and when we are shut down we cannot fight the good fight of faith. I had a faith battle ahead of me, and the real enemy was not cancer but fear. I was blindsided by a surprise attack, but God was not. I felt many emotions and very vulnerable, but I could also feel God’s Presence with me in a palpable way. This was going to be yet another chance for me to practice what I so often preached to others. Full Story
When doctors gave Chance McMinn 72 hours to live after he fell from the top of a four-story building, he looked to God for a miraculous healing. He got one. The accident happened during a night of heavy drinking. McMinn took a fall that damaged his lungs, broke his pelvic bone, L1 and L2 vertebrae, and femur. During the fall, he even broke through the third level of his brain, according to the Walton Sun. Today’s he’s walking. “The past three years have been really tough,” Stephanie McMinn told the Sun. “But Chance keeps beating the odds. He continues to heal. We’ve put our trust in God and we know He will restore Chance fully. God is not a halfway God—he does full restoration.” The paper reports that Chance is almost “back to normal.” Not only does he walk with a cane, he speaks full sentences and handles daily tasks on his own. “God told Chance that he was born to do this in a process,” Stephanie said. “Chance needed to heal from the inside-out, so he has been very patient with all of this.” Formerly struggling with alcohol addiction, a born-again Chance and his wife launched BeGenerous, a Christian nonprofit to help families in need and share the gospel. “I want to help others who struggle with addiction,” Chance said. “Anyone who is struggling with alcohol or any addiction, please reach out to me so I can lift you up.” Charisma
You’ve heard of the #IceBucketChallenge to support Lou Gehrig’s Disease research. I’ve told you about the sick and twisted #TacoandBeerChallenge that aims to fund abortion. Now, a tasteless new challenge is sweeping across the Internet. It’s called the “Burn the Cracker Jesus Challenge,” hashtag #BurnWhiteJesus. (Some call it the Kill White Jesus or Burn White Jesus challenge). Savannah Black posted a disturbing video, complete with titling that says, “Burn Cracker Burn!!!” and plenty of blasphemy to boot. I chose not to show the video in this column, but you can find it on YouTube if you feel the need to view it. Black takes issue with the fact that an image of Jesus as a white man has been burning in mindsets of blacks since they were, he explains, “kidnapped and brung over to the shores of America.” Black is challenging African-Americans to liberate their minds by burning images of what he calls “cracker Jesus.” Full Story
People on Norway’s coast have reported a strong smell of sulfur in the air this week, and experts say it’s coming from a surprising source: Iceland’s Bardarbunga volcano, 800 miles away. Bardarbunga sits about seven miles under the Dyngjujökull glacier, which is more than 800 miles west, and across the Atlantic, from Norway. But as Vibeke Thyness at the Norwegian Medical Institute told Norway’s public broadcasting radio station, NRK, weather, along with a very active few weeks at the volcano, have likely combined to push the sulfur into Norway’s air space. “This is quite a large spill,” Thyness tells NRK. She explained that high pressure over Scotland, along with wind and only a little rain, has made it possible for the fumes to travel so far. While Thyness said the fumes themselves aren’t something that will endanger the public in Norway, the Iceland Review said residents in eastern Iceland have complained about sore throats, stinging eyes and headaches. The news agency said families were told to avoid being outside for long periods of time, particularly children and people with respiratory illnesses. Bjorn Saevar Einarsson, a meteorologist at the Icelandic Met Office, points to a satellite image that clearly shows how far the concentration of sulfur pollution has traveled. Full Story
A late summer snowstorm dropped up to 20 inches of snow in parts of Wyoming. The rare September snow on Wednesday and Thursday damaged trees and caused power outages in some areas of northern Wyoming. While the heaviest snow fell in the Big Horn Mountains, the town of Buffalo received as much as 10 inches. The 3 to 5 inches that fell in Cody is the earliest recorded snowfall there since 1915, when records started being kept. The previous earliest recorded snowfall in Cody was Sept. 12, 1970. Other snowfall totals included 4 inches at Casper Mountain and 3 to 5 inches at Meeteetsee. Some roads and highways had slick spots Friday morning, but otherwise travel around the state was not hampered. Casper Star Tribune
Who is stealing Nigeria’s oil?
ISIS Execute British Hostage David Haines & Says David Cameron Is Responsible