LISTEN: Pastor of Emanuel AME Church Says Political Ad is Distasteful (UCNN 4/21/17)

1. AP – The pastor of a South Carolina church where nine worshippers were killed in a racist attack says a political ad by a candidate for a U.S. House is distasteful. The internet ad by Republican Sheri Few suggests the decision to bring down the Confederate flag after the massacre at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston in June 2015 was made by weak politicians who panicked. Few speaks while standing in front of an American flag and holding a semi-automatic rifle. Emanuel AME Pastor Eric Manning said Thursday that the killings should never be used for political gain and he was disgusted by Few’s ad. Few is one of seven Republicans running for the seat left vacant when Mick Mulvaney became director of the Office of Management and Budget earlier this year.

2. Fox News Insider – Former President Barack Obama will make his first speech since leaving the White House on Monday in Chicago. Obama’s office announced today that the 44th President of the United States will speak to young people at the University of Chicago. The discussion will focus on civic engagement and community organizing, said his spokesman Kevin Lewis. According to the Chicago Tribune, hundreds of people are expected to attend the 11:00am CT speech, which marks Obama’s first public appearance since the presidential inauguration.

3. CP – Nearly 150 United Methodist clergy and clergy candidates have signed onto a letter demanding that the Mainline Protestant denomination recognize LGBT ordination. A group known as the United Methodist Queer Clergy Caucus released a letter on Monday morning demanding that the UMC be more inclusive of LGBT members. The letter came in response to the upcoming trial of openly gay Bishop Karen Oliveto before the denomination’s highest court, the United Methodist Judicial Council. Next week, the Judicial Council will determine whether Oliveto should no longer be bishop of the Mountain Sky Area region due to being in a same-sex marriage.

4. Herald Live – Dramatic scenes played out at the Port Elizabeth Airport yesterday when a popular Durban televangelist at the centre of sex-abuse claims was handcuffed in the restroom and arrested for human trafficking minutes after his flight landed. A Hawks spokesman said the pastor, Timothy Omotoso, 58, had been charged with human trafficking and would appear in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate’s Court. Omotoso had allegedly trafficked women and girls from various branches of his church to a house where they were sexually exploited. The Nigerian televangelist is a senior pastor of Jesus Dominion International, whose headquarters are in Durban.

5. BBC – One policeman has been killed and a second wounded in a shooting in central Paris, police say. Reports say a gunman who fired on them has been shot dead. The Champs Elysees, where the shooting occurred, has been sealed off. France goes to the polls on Sunday in the first round of the presidential election. Jihadism is a major issue in the vote after attacks claimed by so-called Islamic State.

6. BP – As this year’s Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting approaches, SBC President Steve Gaines says fellow Baptists should anticipate emphases on prayer, evangelism and financial stewardship at the June 13-14 gathering in Phoenix, where the 2003 and 2011 annual meetings also were held. This year’s annual meeting theme is “Pray! For such a time as this” based on Luke 18:1 and Esther 4:14. Gaines hopes that through a commitment “to fervent, frequent, faith-filled prayer,” the SBC will become “a catalyst for spiritual awakening and revival.”

7. PEOPLE – uba Gooding Sr., a popular soul singer in the 1970s and father of Academy Award winner Cuba Gooding Jr., died Thursday, reports TMZ. He was 72. Gooding Sr. was found slumped over in his silver Jaguar, which was parked on a street in Woodland Hills, CA, according to the report. TMZ says the fire department responded to the scene and attempted CPR, but could not resuscitate him. Gooding Sr. was the lead singer of the band The Main Ingredient, which was best known for the hit song, “Everybody Plays the Fool.”

As you go throughout this day, keep this word in mind: Matthew 7:12 says, “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.”

Vince Lombardi said, “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.”

God loves you. He always has and He always will. John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you don’t know Jesus as your Saviour, today is a good day to get to know Him. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose from the dead for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thanks so much for listening and may God bless your day!