Nigerian Christians & Muslims Pray For Peace as Elections Approach (BCNN1 02/17/19)

According to Religion News Service, As elections draw near in the West African nation of Nigeria, thousands of worshipers continue to gather at mosques and churches to pray for peace, unity and stability. The upcoming presidential elections will be the country’s sixth since 1999, when it embraced democracy after a long era of military rule. However, past elections have been marred by acts of violence and vote rigging. The country has also been embroiled in a decade of war with one of the world’s most notorious rebel groups — Boko Haram. Clashes between farmers and herdsmen — groups divided by “religion, ethnicity, and culture,” — have resulted in hundreds of deaths. The country is also facing a tough time in the fight against corruption. Leaders across all religions are praying for a peaceful vote and urging Nigerians to choose good leaders to solve the country’s economic woes and insecurity.

According to CNN, Two law enforcement sources with knowledge of the investigation say that Chicago Police believe Jussie Smollett paid two men to orchestrate his alleged assault. The brothers, who were arrested Wednesday, were released without charges Friday after Chicago police cited the discovery of “new evidence.” The sources told CNN that the two men are now cooperating fully with law enforcement. Smollett told authorities he was attacked early January 29 by two men who were “yelling out racial and homophobic slurs.” He said one attacker put a rope around his neck and poured an unknown chemical substance on him.

According to Religion News Service, Pope Francis has defrocked former U.S. Cardinal Theodore McCarrick after Vatican officials found him guilty of soliciting for sex while hearing confession and sexual crimes against minors and adults. McCarrick is the highest-ranking churchman to be laicized, as the process is called. It means he can no longer celebrate Mass or other sacraments, wear clerical vestments or be addressed by any religious title. The scandal swirling around him was particularly damning to the church’s reputation in the eyes of the faithful because it apparently was an open secret that he slept with adult seminarians. Francis removed McCarrick as a cardinal in July after a U.S. church investigation determined that an allegation he fondled a teenage altar boy in the 1970s was credible.

According to the Associated Press, The NBA is bringing a pro league to Africa. The Basketball Africa League, a new collaboration between the NBA and the sport’s global governing body FIBA, was announced Saturday. The initial plan is for the 12-team league to begin play in January, and former President Barack Obama is among those who are expected to have direct involvement with the league’s operations. It’s yet to be determined which existing club teams will be part of the league. Qualification tournaments will be held later this year to determine those clubs, with teams from Angola, Egypt, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Tunisia expected to be among those taking part. No nation will have more than two teams in the league.

According to Baptist Press, B. Gray Allison, who gave theological strength to the Conservative Resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention as the founder of Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary, died Feb. 12 in Memphis, Tenn. He was 94. Through the seminary, Allison also buttressed Southern Baptists’ evangelistic commitment. Allison founded the seminary after 20-plus years as a pastor, professor at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, evangelism staff member at the Home Mission Board (now North American Mission Board) and full-time evangelist.

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In closing, remember, God loves you. He always has and He always will. John 3:16 says, “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 for listening and may God bless your day!