PODCAST: WHO Warns of Worsening Coronavirus Pandemic (UCN 7.15.20)

This is the Urban Christian News podcast. Here are the top stories you need to know about today.

According to Reuters, The new coronavirus pandemic raging around the globe will worsen if countries fail to adhere to strict healthcare precautions, the World Health Organization warned on Monday. “Let me be blunt, too many countries are headed in the wrong direction, the virus remains public enemy number one,” WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual briefing from the U.N. agency’s headquarters in Geneva. “If basics are not followed, the only way this pandemic is going to go – it is going to get worse and worse and worse.” Global infections stand at 13 million, according to a Reuters tally, with more than half a million deaths.

According to The Christian Post, The body of a New Hampshire pastor’s son was found after days of searching Diamond Lake in Oregon following a tragic kayaking accident. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office confirmed the death of 37-year-old Jared Boria, who went missing while on a late-night kayaking ride during a camping trip nearly two weeks ago. Boria is the son of Bruce Boria, the senior pastor at Bethany Church in Greenland, New Hampshire. According to the sheriff’s office, Boria’s body was located on Thursday around 11:20 a.m. when dispatchers received a report that a deceased male was located in the lake. Marine deputies and the Douglas County Medical Examiner responded to the scene. Boria was presumed to have drowned after he launched his kayak from a campsite at Diamond Lake on June 30 at around 10:20 p.m. and police were called about an hour later to report a distressed male yelling for help from inside the lake. Boria’s wife, Rowan, later reported her husband as missing.

According to News4SanAntonio, A patient in their 30s died from the coronavirus after attending what’s being called a “COVID party,” according to a San Antonio health official. Chief Medical Officer of Methodist Healthcare Dr. Jane Appleby said the idea of these parties is to see if the virus is real. “This is a party held by somebody diagnosed by the COVID virus and the thought is to see if the virus is real and to see if anyone gets infected,” Dr. Appleby said. According to Appleby, the patient became critically ill and had a heartbreaking statement moments before death. “Just before the patient died, they looked at their nurse and said ‘I think I made a mistake, I thought this was a hoax, but it’s not,'” Appleby said. Appleby made this case public as the spike in cases for Bexar County continues. She wants everyone, especially those in the younger demographic, to realize they are not invincible.

According to The Christian Post, Elders at Menlo Church in Menlo Park, California, have launched a “supplemental independent investigation” into concerns raised about the circumstances under which a volunteer, revealed as the pastor’s son, was allowed to work with children despite confessing to having an attraction to minors. Pastor John Ortberg was asked to go on personal leave from the church on Nov. 22, 2019, while an investigation of concerns raised by a third party about a then unidentified church volunteer was conducted. Earlier this month, Daniel Lavery, a trans-identified woman who is Ortberg’s estranged daughter, revealed in an extensive thread on Twitter that the volunteer is her brother — John Ortberg III. “The volunteer was my brother, John Ortberg III. When we last spoke, he admitted to seeking out unsupervised contact with children (including overnight travel) for well over a decade,” Lavery wrote. “I believe his unique relationship to my father, John Ortberg Jr., is the sole reason why John Jr. went out of his way to protect his secret and facilitate his continued contact with children.”

According to CNN, Zindzi Mandela, South Africa’s Ambassador to Denmark and daughter of anti-apartheid icons Nelson and Winnie Mandela, has died at the age of 59, the South African Department of International Relations and Cooperation said Monday. “Zindzi will not only be remembered as a daughter of our struggle heroes, Tata Nelson and Mama Winnie Mandela, but as a struggle heroine in her own right. She served South Africa well,” Naledi Pandor, Minister of International Relations, said in a short statement Monday morning. The department said it was still gathering information on the cause of Mandela’s death and expects to release a detailed statement later. Mandela, who was Nelson and Winnie Mandela’s youngest daughter, died early Monday morning at a Johannesburg hospital, according to a statement from the office of President Cyril Ramaphosa.

According to NBC News, Authorities are confident they have found the body of actress Naya Rivera at Lake Piru in California, five days after she went missing during a boating trip with her son, the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office said Monday. An official identification is dependent on an examination of dental records, Sheriff Bill Ayub said during an afternoon news conference. An autopsy has not been conducted, but authorities have previously said they presume Rivera drowned in the lake. “Based on the location where the body was found, physical characteristics of the body, clothing found on the body, and the physical condition of the body, as well as the absence of any other persons reported missing in the area, we are confident the body we found is that of Naya Rivera,” Ayub said. Rivera, 33, was boating with her 4-year-old son Wednesday afternoon when she went missing. The boy was found asleep and wearing a life vest late Wednesday afternoon and told investigators that he and his mother went swimming and he got back on the boat, but Rivera did not. Another life jacket was also found in the boat. Her son described being helped into the boat by his mother from behind, but told investigators that when he looked back, he saw Rivera disappear under the water. Ayub said it was still speculation, but it was possible Rivera got caught in some currents that appear in the lake in the afternoon.

According to Reuters, The U.S. National Football League’s Washington team announced on Monday it will retire its Redskins name and logo, which it has used since 1933 but which has long been criticized as racist by Native American rights groups. Team owner Dan Snyder, who bought the franchise in 1999, had previously said he would never change the name but softened his stance after FedEx Corp. which owns the naming rights to the team’s suburban stadium in Landover, Maryland, urged the NFL club to rebrand. The team said on July 3 it would conduct a thorough review of the club’s name. “Today, we are announcing we will be retiring the Redskins name and logo upon completion of this review,” the team said in a statement. The team did not provide a timeline for when the review would be completed.

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In closing, remember, 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!