Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Israel Truth Week @ Victory International Church -- Hamilton, ON

So no doubt I attend the best church in Hamilton, maybe even Ontario --and probably soon Canada. No offense intend, you really should think your church is the best, if you don't --I'd move. The way this church as an organized congregation works and encourages the individuals within it to live and act on their faith is incredible. 

I'm very proud to invite you all to join an incredible assembly of organizations and individuals at my church on MARCH 5th and 6th for ISRAEL TRUTH WEEK . 

The conference is FREE but all proceeds will go to the ALYN CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL in Jerusalem. This is a foundation close to our church's heart, our pastor Dr. Peter Marshall sits on the Board of Directors for Alyn. You can also donate beforehand to the Alyn Hospital here:

Here is a link to the latest update from their blog about what will be going on:

During that two days time you will have the privilege of hearing a diverse and highly knowledgeable group of speakers including: Salomon Benzimra, Shobie Kapoor, Rev. Majed El Shafie, and a bunch of others which I will have to add to this list because I'm too excited to recall at the moment! The keynote speech and finale will be given at McMaster University. So yes, BE THERE!!!

Here's a video of Mark Vandermaas, founder of Israel Truth Week announcing this years conference.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Dr. Andrew Bennett Announced Today as the Ambassador for Canada's new Office of Religious Freedom.

Andrew Bennett has been named ambassador for Canada's Office of Religious Freedom, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced today.
"Around the world, violations of religious freedom are widespread and they are increasing," Harper said In a speech at the Ahmadiyya Muslim community centre and mosque in Vaughan, Ont.
"Dr. Bennett is a man of principle and deep convictions and he will encourage the protection of religious minorities around the world so all can practise their faith without fear of violence and repression."
Bennett, a Catholic, is dean of Augustine College, a Christian liberal arts college in Ottawa. He has a PhD in politics from the University of Edinburgh and a master of arts in history from McGill University in Montreal.
Bennett wrote his doctoral thesis on comparing separatists and nationalist movements in Quebec, Scotland and Catalonia.
After graduating, he went to work for the deputy minister of intergovernmental affairs. He later worked at the Export Development Corporation.
Harper first promised the new branch of the Foreign Affairs Department during the last federal election campaign.
"This was a platform commitment, to create an office of religious freedom, to make the protection of religious freedom of vulnerable religious minorities a key pillar of Canadian foreign policy," Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, who attended the announcement, told reporters on Monday.
The office is to be housed within the Foreign Affairs Department, but the minister, John Baird, didn't attend the announcement. Baird was in Panama on Tuesday after the last-minute postponement of a planned trip to Venezuela. Also attending was International Co-operation Minister Julian Fantino, whose riding contains the Ahmadiyya community centre.
Janet Epp Buckingham, of Trinity Western University, described on its website as offering a "Christ-centred" education, told CBC that the Office of Religious Freedom will act as an advisory body to Foreign Affairs, and will draw on the expertise of ex-pats in Canada about the religious situation in their countries.

Closed-door meeting

In 2011, a closed-door meeting about the office, organized by the government, was criticized by some scholars after it turned out four of the six panellists being consulted were drawn from Christian religions, with the other two being Jewish and Baha'i.
Epp Buckingham said that she was aware of a "wide variety of groups that have had input into the office."
Don Hutchinson, of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, who was one of the six panelists consulted by the government, also told CBC that different religious groups had been widely consulted.
But Colin Clay, an Anglican priest in Saskatoon, who heads both Multi-Faith Saskatoon and Multi-Faith Saskatchewan, said he didn't know of any consultation with his groups and first found out about the proposed Office of Religious Freedom by reading about it in a newspaper.
Asked if the office might be biased toward Christians, Hutchinson said, "The most persecuted faith on the planet is the Christian faith community. So in striking a balance, one would have to look at the orthodox or Roman Catholic or evangelical communities as well as the needs of the various Muslim communities and the Baha'i and other groups."
Arvind Sharma, who teaches comparative religion at McGill, told CBC that one of the reasons Christian faiths are the most persecuted is because they are also the most proselytizing in many parts of the world.
"Conversion can mean two things when related to religious freedom", he said. "My right to change my religion and somebody else's right to ask me to change my religion. The person who is trying to convert somebody may use deception, may use threat, may use temptation and so on."
However, Sharma also said, "I see a great opportunity because the office is being set up in Canada and Canada is a self-consciously multi-cultural society, so it has this great opportunity to define religious freedom in a way which is inclusive, which takes the views of all the religions in the world into this view and not just the missionary religions."

'It must not become Christian-centric'

Liberal MP Irwin Cotler, a human rights advocate and his party's critic on human rights, welcomed the office and noted that religious freedom is a "fundamental human right under our Charter of Rights and Freedoms."
However, he warned, "it must not become Christian-centric, or it must not appear to prefer a particular religion. In other words, there has to be an egalitarian approach."
Paul Dewar, the NDP's critic for foreign affairs, told CBC there had been no consultation with opposition parties about the office. He recalled that when prime minister Brian Mulroney set up the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development, also known as Rights and Democracy, in 1988, the opposition parties were broadly consulted.
Rights and Democracy had been created to be a non-partisan, independent Canadian institution that monitored human rights around the world and provided support to democratic groups. The government pulled the plug on it last year.
Dewar said about the office for religious freedom, "If this is all we have to replace human rights protection and democratic development abroad, I think it's short changing what Canada can do."

Andrew Bennett teaches the History of Christianity and also serves as Dean of Augustine College since February, 2011. He received a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Edinburgh in 2002, an M.A. in History from McGill University in 1997 and an Hons. B.A. in History from Dalhousie University in 1995. He is currently completing a part-time degree in theology (Eastern Christian Studies) at the Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky Institute for Eastern Christian Studies at Saint Paul University in Ottawa. He has taught at the School of Social and Political Studies and the Centre for Canadian Studies, both at the University of Edinburgh, and in the Department of History at McGill University. He worked for several years as a Political Risk Analyst for Export Development Canada, Ottawa, and as a Policy Analyst in the Privy Council Office in Ottawa. He is presently the Vice-President of the Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky Institute Foundation which supports Eastern Christian studies in North America.

Friday, February 15, 2013

via IBD: 92% of Pakistanis Now Dislike America

AP (Pakistani allies discuss President Obama's policies)
AP (Pakistani allies discuss President Obama's policies)
After four years of Barack Obama's diplomatic 'leadership' and billions of dollars in attempted friendship aid, a new public opinion poll reveals that 92% of Pakistanis now disapprove of the United States.
The results could have been worse. Not much. But a little. Fully four Pakistanis out of 100 do approve of the United States, President Obama and his policies. They, however, seem to keep kind of quiet about their views in that rowdy land. That's the lowest favorable rating Pakistan's citizens have ever given their ostensible North American ally.
The new Gallup Poll, out this morning, reports that the recent high point of Pakistani approval of the United States came in the spring of 2011 when 27% approved. But then public opinion went south on North America.
Something to do with U.S. Air Force planes over Afghanistan one night confounding Pakistani radar into thinking its skies were perfectly empty when, in fact, a pack of stealth aircraft were advancing toward the city of Abbottabad carrying a Kevlar-coated posse of heavily-armed SEALs in night-vision goggles.
Their assignment was to land, blow open the gate, kill a few people if necessary and bring back the body of one, Osama bin Laden -- along with his computers, correspondence and anything else of interest. It was a mission any president would order.
All without notice to Pakistan officials, elected or otherwise.
Since then, CIA drones have lingered inside Pakistan air space, watching and waiting until commanded to direct a large explosive device onto a car or two or some houses where residents were gathered. More than 350 times that's happened.
Often, some of the people vaporized in such raids were on a list of terrorist suspects targeted for extinction by the American president.
For some reason, Pakistanis seem to regard these serial acts of lethal interdiction as a violation of national sovereignty. Imagine how Americans might feel if Canada sent silent drones on southbound flights over U.S. cities to dispatch residents in ill favor up north.
To be fair, during the 2007-08 campaign for the Democratic nomination, then former state senator Obama did warn everyone listening to party debates that he would bomb even Pakistan if it did not fully cooperate in a campaign against terrorists.
At the time many were faux-shocked and Obama was roundly denounced for saying he'd attack an alleged ally in the endless Afghan war. His critics were many, including fellow Sen. Hillary Clinton, his future Secretary of State who would come to help Obama implement his foreign policies.

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via Global Dispatch: Christian man shot and killed for refusing to convert.

Killed After Refusing To Convert To Islam

Younas Masih died Monday after he was shot five times last Thursday as he made his way home.
Pakistan map CIASources say an unknown gunman fired at the 55-year-old Christian man after it is believed he was attacked after he resisted pressures from co-workers to convert to Islam.
Masih is described as strong in his Christian faith, involved in a local parish, but  local sources told AsiaNews that Muslim co-workers had began pressuring him to convert, which he rejected, standing firm in his beliefs in Christ.
Despite the fact that people were talking behind his back and had made repeated threats against him, he continued to work for the same company and stood firm against pressures and attempts at blackmail.
Last Thursday, his co-workers tried again, asking him to convert. A heated discussion followed that included insults and threats. When he went home Masih was attacked by a gunman who fired five bullets into him.
After he was rushed to a hospital, his conditions appeared critical from the start.
Doctors removed the bullets and had him moved into the intensive care unit where he eventually died.
For Fr James Chand, a priest in Quetta, killing a man for his faith is a “tragedy that that breaks one’s heart.”
Speaking to AsiaNews, he confirmed that Younas Masih had been repeatedly threatened, adding that “the behaviour of the concerned authorities was even more devastating.”
“We demand protection for the lives and property of minorities in Pakistan,” the clergyman said. “The authorities must ensure and safeguard the basic rights of minorities and protect them from hatred and violence.”

February Began with Christian Child Rape in Pakistan

via Pakistan Christian Post

Pattoki, Punjab: February 9, 2013. (LEAD) A Christian minor girl, Fouzia bibi, 15 from a small village of Roday, Dristrict Kasur, in Punjab Province of Pakistan became victim of rape by local two influential Muslim men, Sher Muhammad (meaning Lion of Muhammad) and shabbir Ali. LEAD intervene the case and got registered FIR bearing No.22/13 at Police station seria Mughal through submitting application to DSP Pattoki.

Yesterday some Muslims and some police men, not in Police Uniforms, raided Kaila Masih's house and beaten and tortured Christian women Zareena Bibi, Hameedan Bibi and Sharifan Bibi and also used abusing words for them.

Today 9 February 2013, Chief of LEAD, Sardar Mushtaq Gill was called by Rev. Saleem Gill and Mr. Kaila Masih about this sad and tragic incident. Chief of LEAD immediately moved to Pattoki and met with Rev. Gill and Christians of Village Roday and filed to applications to DSP Pattoki one for registration of FIR against the police officials and other Muslims who beaten the Christians women and other for transfer investigation of rape case from Police station Serai Mughal to DSP Pattoki.

Police has arrested one culprit and yet not sent him jail, other culprit is free and making threats to Christians of the area.

Demands must be made for an immediate arrest of the other culprit who also perpetrated the vicious acts on poor Fouzia Bibi and arrested culprit must be sent to jail.

Rev. Gill told to LEAD's Chief that our people are poor that's why they are treated like this.

LEAD is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with Children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. As followers of Jesus, we are motivated by God's grace and love to serve all people regardless of race, religion gender or ethnicity.

We ask for financial and moral support for the continuity of work which LEAD provides in Pakistan. We are thankful for all who are financially supporting LEAD’s work for the Persecuted Church. We pray for more who have same vision for the Persecuted Church, to be our partners in this noble cause.

VIA SUN NEWS NETWORK: Religious freedom office unveiling expected next week


OTTAWA - The Conservative government is expected to unveil its long-awaited office of religious freedom - and its ambassador - next Tuesday.A raft of invitations went out last week to religious groups across Canada for an event at an Ahmadiyya Muslim - an often-persecuted Muslim minority sect - community centre in suburban Toronto.

The office was first promised during the 2011 election campaign.

Despite meeting with numerous religious stakeholders, the department struggled to nail down the details of the $5-million project meant to promote human rights and encourage protection of religious minorities worldwide.

Now it appears it's a go.

On Friday, the Ahmadiyya Muslim organization referred all media questions on the event to the feds, but earlier in the week its national spokesman told Embassy newspaper: "It's a whole announcement of the office of religious freedom."

Don Hutchinson, vice president of the Evangelical Fellowship Canada, said he was invited and expects the ambassador to be introduced.

"We're hopeful whoever is appointed would be someone well known and accepted in the community of individuals and organizations in Canada that engage on religious freedom as an international concern," he said.

International Christian Voice's Peter Bhatti, whose older brother Shahbaz Bhatti was a former Pakistani minorities minister assassinated in that country in 2011, also received an invitation.

"This is a big event," he said. "Definitely we'll go."

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird's office wasn't confirming the announcement.

"I have nothing to announce at this time," said spokesman Rick Roth.

In January, the government said the office was slated to open in early 2013.