Ontario Premier's Plan to Scrap Lord's Prayer Backfires as Groundswell Grows in Opposition

May 7, 2008 by

From LifeSite News By Hilary White TORONTO, May 6, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Ontario premier’s plans to scrap the recitation of the Lord’s Prayer in the Legislature has resulted in a groundswell of opposition. The flood of emails objecting to the proposal temporarily crashed the website of Queen’s Park, and hundreds of phone calls have come in protesting the move. MPPs have complained that the time and money spent on the project could have better been spent elsewhere, especially considering there had been no calls to abolish the prayer leading up to McGuinty’s decision to put the proposal to scrap the prayer before a committee. In a move that reportedly surprised MPPs, Premier McGuinty, who continues to claim membership in the Catholic Church, told the legislature in February this year that the time had come to "move beyond" open acknowledgement of Christianity in the Ontario government. He asked a committee to draft a religiously neutral "prayer" that would better suit Ontario’s "religious diversity". "I’ve asked for a parliamentary committee, with representation from each of the parties and the Speaker’s involvement as well, to take a look at how we can move beyond the Lord’s Prayer to a broader approach that is more inclusive in nature," McGuinty said. McGuinty told media, "We’re much more than just Protestants and Catholics today. We have all the world’s faiths represented here." But Ontario, statistically speaking, is not as "diverse" as Mr. McGuinty might believe. Recent figures show that two-thirds of Ontario’s population is Christian. In Canada overall, professing Christians still make up at least 70 per cent of the population. McGuinty admitted that his suggestion to abolish the Lord’s Prayer had resulted in a scolding from his Catholic mother. He told media today that he is "looking forward" to hearing the recommendation of the committee. But committee chairman Steve Peters told media that while the response was overwhelmingly against the idea from the public, the committee had not finished its consultation process. Various groups, including atheists and non-Christian organizations, have been given until the end of the month to make presentations. Conservative MPP Garfield Dunlop said, "The Lord’s Prayer is inclusive enough that it covers a lot of different religions. It’s not just about religion. It’s about tradition." "You don’t tamper too much with what you’ve got," he said. "This really irks a lot of people and gets under their skin." NDP MPP for Parkdale-High Park, Cheri DiNovo said that "about 80 per cent" of constituents are in favour of keeping the Lord’s Prayer. "Now he’s getting his groundswell," she added. Progressive Conservative Leader John Tory said, "I don’t think there was any thirst to have a debate on this at all, certainly not compared to hospital emergency rooms or lost jobs. But now that Mr. McGuinty – for reasons best known to him – has started the debate, people are quite animated about it." The committee consists of Bas Balkissoon, MPP (Liberal Party), Garfield Dunlop, MPP (Progressive Conservative Party) and Cheri Di Novo,...

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National Day of Prayer: Let Us Pray for an End to Abortion

May 1, 2008 by

From Christian Newswire STATEN ISLAND, Ny., April 30 /Christian Newswire/ — Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, today urged Christians to participate in tomorrow’s 57th Annual National Day of Prayer, and to include the unborn in their prayers. "On this National Day of Prayer, we turn to God in Jesus’ Name, and His blessing on our nation, our leaders, and our fellow citizens. Moreover, we pray for an end to the most pervasive form of violence, that which occurs against children in the womb." Fr. Pavone praised Shirley Dobson and her entire team for the work they put into this annual effort. "It is an inspiration to see all that the Dobsons have done for our nation and for the Body of Christ." Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org....

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London Mayoral Elections: A censored choice

May 1, 2008 by

Read ‘BBC censored Christian Party Broadcast’ in TimesonLine. The BBC is facing a High Court challenge over its decision to censor a party political broadcast in the run-up to Thursday’s local elections. A Christian party has begun legal action after the corporation insisted on changes to a short film in which the party voiced opposition to the building of Europe’s biggest mosque next to the site of the 2012 Olympics. Tablighi Jamaat, the Islamic missionary group behind the £75 million Abbey Mills mosque, opposes inter-faith dialogue and preaches that non-Muslims are an evil and corrupting influence. One of its British advocates has said that it aims to rescue Muslims from the culture and civilisation of Jews and Christians by creating “such hatred for their ways as human beings have for urine and excreta”. The Christian Choice election broadcast would have described Tablighi Jamaat as “a separatist Islamic group” before welcoming that some “moderate Muslims” were opposed to the mosque complex. Alan Craig, the party’s candidate in the London mayoral election, also on Thursday, said that he was forced to change the wording at the insistence of lawyers at the BBC and ITV, which will also feature in the court action. The BBC refused to accept “separatist” — the corporation asked for “controversial” instead — and barred the use of “moderate Muslims” because the phrase implied that Tablighi Jamaat was less than moderate. Read whole article HERE. COMMENTARY: From Melanie Phillips, The Spectator There is clearly no limit to British pusillanimity and sheer unadulterated funk when it comes to calling Islamic radicalism by even the most polite and restrained of proper names. The Tablighi Jamaat is an Islamist sect which is funding the proposed mega-mosque on the site of the 2012 Olympics in east London. In my book Londonistan, I described the project and its backers thus: The cultural significance and symbolism of a project on this scale are unmistakeable. It would make the most powerful statement possible, on the back of the high-visibility Games, about the primacy of Islam in Britain. That is why it is being proposed. ‘It will be something never seen before in this country. It is a mosque for the future as part of the British landscape,’ said Abdul Khalique, a senior member of Tablighi Jamaat which is behind the proposal. Tablighi Jamaat is often described as a ‘worldwide Islamic missionary group’ and is said to be pacific and apolitical. Two years ago, according to The New York Times, a senior FBI anti-terrorism official claimed it was a recruiting ground for al-Qaeda. According to the counter-intelligence expert Alex Alexiev, Tablighi Jamaat is a driving force of Islamic extremism and a major recruiting agency for terrorist causes worldwide. For a majority of young Muslim extremists, he says, joining Tablighi Jamaat is the first step on the road to extremism. Perhaps 80 percent of the Islamist extremists in France come from Tablighi ranks, prompting French intelligence officers to call Tablighi Jamaat the ‘antechamber of fundamentalism.’ U.S. counter-terrorism...

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Why Muslims Convert to Christianity: Charles Colson

Apr 30, 2008 by

Drawn to the Light  A few days ago, Fox News ran a grim special titled "Jihad USA: Confronting the Threat of Homegrown Terror." It is a warning of the continuing danger of Islamo-fascism. The program probably deepened many Americans’ fear of and hostility toward Muslims. That is unfortunate, because most Muslims are not would-be jihadists. But we Christians especially need to guard our emotions so we can be a good witness to Muslims — a caution raised by Dr. Dudley Woodberry, professor of Islamic Studies at Fuller. Woodberry, aware that throughout the world Muslims have been turning to Christ, was curious about the reasons why — especially in countries where the cost of converting is so high. To find the answer, he created a detailed questionnaire. Over a 16-year period, some 750 Muslims from 30 countries filled it out — and the results are eye-opening. The number one reason Muslim converts listed for their decision to follow Christ was the lifestyle of the Christians among them. As Woodberry, Russell Shubin, and G. Marks write in Christianity Today, Muslim converts noted that "there was no gap between the moral profession and the practice of Christians" they knew. An Egyptian convert contrasted the love shown by Christians "with the unloving treatment of Muslim students and faculty he encountered at a university in Medina." Other converts were impressed that "Christians treat women as equals" and enjoy loving marriages. And poor Muslims observed that "the expatriate Christian workers they knew had adopted, contrary to their expectations, a simple lifestyle." They wore locally made clothes and abstained from pork and alcohol, so as not to offend Muslim neighbors. Read the rest of the article here:...

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