April 2014

APRIL 2014

In this Edition: Europe; Africa; Asia; Australia; Central America; Middle East; North America



    A Nigerian Islamist militant group is still holding 85 girls it abducted from a raid on a secondary school in northeastern Borno state, the State Government says. The Boko Haram Group's five-year-old campaign is now seen as the main security threat to Nigeria, Africa's leading energy producer. Kidnapping girls is a tactic Boko Haram, whose name means "Western education is forbidden", began using early last year. It is similar to Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army, which in the name of Christianity abducted thousands of school-aged girls across central Africa to use as forced "wives" for their commanders.
    Source: Reuters  
  •  GHANA
    Forty scholars from twenty countries gathered in Accra for the Lausanne Global Consultation on Islam. The group all had extensive experience of ministry in Islamic contexts. The consultation was intended to resource and equip the Majority World church in understanding Islam. The first half of the consultation explored five faces of Islam - Mystical and Popular Islam, Missionary and Polemical Islam, Ideological and Political Islam, Militant and Violent Islam and Progressive and Liberal Islam. During the second half, participants met in four focus groups, exploring Needs, Opportunities, Challenges and current Resources, as well as developing action plans related to training for ministry to Muslims in the contexct of local churches, seminaries and Bible Colleges, mission agencies and study centres. A consultation statement is forthcoming. 
    Visit: www.lausanne.org
    Ivory Coast's prime minister says his country is on track to reach double digit economic growth this year and become an emerging market by 2020. Daniel Kablan Duncan said the government has worked hard to bring Reconciliation and restore Security and investor confidence following 2010's post-election violence that killed 3,000 people."Cote d'Ivoire is changing quickly. You can see by the highways, the roads, even the agriculture sector is changing," said Duncan.

    Duncan also held one-on-one meetings with representatives of a wide range of international Companies and Organisations, including Religious, interested in working in the West African nation.

    The Prime Minister said that if the country is to have strong sustained economic growth, it needs peace and security on the ground, which includes national Reconciliation but also accountability for crimes committed in the post-election period.
    Source: Voice of America  


  •  INDIA
    Operation Mobilisation (OM) has obtained a special price to make DVDs in working with the ship ministry to make better use of video.  The Jesus DVD in many different languages has been distributed to millions and the Indian film Dayasagar has been well-accepted all over India.
    Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    Eternity Newspaper in Sydney reports that the newly elected Premier of New South Wales, Liberal MP Mike Baird, is a committed Christian. Baird, 46, was elected unopposed. He attends an Anglican church in his electorate of Manly (a beachside suburb of Sydney). Senior Minister at St Matthew's on the Corso, Bruce Clark, told Eternity that Baird is a strongly committed Christian man.
    Source: Eternity Newspaper
  •  ABC
    ABC has signed a deal in China, to launch an online portal giving Chinese consumers direct access to Australian content and bolster its coproduction activities. The ABC will establish a base in Shanghai with official approval to represent and sell media content across China, enter into international coproductions and generate international sponsorship and promotional opportunities. ABC spokesman John Woodward said that this is the first time a foreign media organisation has been allowed to operate in a portal in China.
    Source: Reuters
  •  PERTH
    In Perth a group of 11 Christians were arrested after they staged a prayer sit-in in the office of Foreign Minister Julie Bishop. They have been charged with trespass. It's the second prayer sit-in in a month, with the first in Sydney in Immigration Minister Scott Morrison's office. Five Sydney protestors were arrested for trespass but in court last week the charges were dismissed with the local magistrate saying "if ever there was a peaceful protest this was it." "Churches are speaking with one voice about the cruelty happening to children in our detention centres. But we are routinely ignored by politicians who claim to share Christian values," said the Reverend Chris Bedding, an Anglican priest.
    Source: Bible Society


    Venezuelan TV Journalist Nairobi Pinto has been released, eight days after she was kidnapped. Ms Pinto, the assignment editor of the private news network Globovision, was freed near the Venezuelan capital Caracas. 

    A number of diplomats, businessmen and athletes have been abducted in recent years. The majority are released soon after being taken but some victims have been killed or died from injuries sustained during their capture.  It remains unclear why Ms Pinto was abducted and whether a ransom was paid.
    Source: BBC News


  •  SAT7
    Canon David Porter, the Archbishop of Canterbury's Director of Reconciliation was the keynote speaker at "The Untold Story: the Middle East behind the Headlines", a SAT-7-sponsored event in Belfast. Canon Porter spoke of his experiences of visiting the Middle East on behalf of the Archbishop of Canterbury and hinting at what it can teach Christians in the West. "We can learn so much from Christians who hang on to faith ... amidst such despair and violence and difficulty: what does that say to us?" 

    Addressing the evening's key question - how to sustain faith and build peace in the divided countries of the Middle East - Canon Porter said, although religious language may be used, the causes of the region's conflicts are all 'fundamentally political'. Issues of identity, land, power and the abuse of power are at the heart and lie behind the deep alienation felt by different groups, as they have done in his homeland of Northern Ireland.
    Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


  • USA
    An American Pastor has urged Christians to get involved in journalism and politics in order to stand up to a modern culture hostile to their faith. Reverend Joel Pelsue, founder of the Los Angeles-based Arts and Entertainment Ministries, specialises in equipping Christians for Media careers.  He claimed that Christians had withdrawn from a culture which was highly influential, with the result that Christians were unable to express their views in the mass media industry.
    Source: Christian Concern - Christian Weekly News
  • USA
    A study from the Barna Group says that Americans spend more time in front of a screen than ever. The study suggests a trend is emerging. Digital life connects - and disconnects - adults in life and faith. In 2013, two images of Saint Peter's Square captured the world's attention. The first, taken in 2005, shows a crowd attending the funeral of Pope John Paul II. The second, taken in 2013 from an angle similar to the first photo, shows a crowd observing the election of Pope Francis - only this photo exhibits a particular glow. Nearly every person in the picture is holding up a digital screen to capture the event.

    More than one-third of adults (36%) stop whatever they're doing to check their device when they get a new text or message but only 21% of adults say they set aside time each day to connect with God.

The Fellowship of European Broadcasters (FEB) will greatly miss the prayer and fellowship of these friends who have recently gone to be with the Lord.

Norma Pederson, wife of Reach Beyond President Wayne Pederson, went to be with her Saviour in April after a battle with cancer.

At the age of 88, Ruth Luttrell, one of the founders of the Rock Christian Radio and Ministries in Puerto Rico, passed away in March.

Leif Haanes, of the Haanes Shipping Company in Norway, prayed for and supported Christian Ministry throughout Europe for many decades and will also be much missed by all of us.

FEB invites you to pray for family members as they go through this difficult time and to express grateful thanks to God for the lives of these faithful Servants.


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