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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

Barr to Be Honored for ‘Christlike Behavior’ Today With Award From Right Wing Catholic Group With Strong Ties to Trump

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Attorney General Bill Barr will be honored for his “Christlike behavior” at Wednesday’s National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, according to Roman Catholic Sister, author, and anti-death penalty activist Sister Helen Prejean.

The National Catholic Prayer Breakfast says Barr will be presented with its Christifideles Laici Award during today’s 16th annual prayer event.

“In Honor and Gratitude for Fidelity to the Church, Exemplary Selfless and Steadfast Service in the Lord’s Vineyard,” are the words inscribed on the award.

The event is being sponsored by several groups, including Alliance Defending Freedom, which appears on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of anti-LGBTQ hate groups.

President Donald Trump is expected to address the group today during its virtual ceremony.

Among the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast’s founders are Pat Cipollone, President Trump’s White House Counsel; former Republican Senator Rick Santorum; and Joseph Cella, President Trump’s Ambassador to Fiji, and a former Trump transition team member who co-founded the right wing activist group Catholic Vote.

Another founder of the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast is Austin Ruse, the president of the anti-LGBTQ hate group Center for Family and Human Rights (C-FAM).

Perhaps the most notable founder of the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast is the group’s president, conservative judicial activist Leonard Leo.

Leo also serves as co-chairman of the Federalist Society, the far right group responsible for promoting the illegitimate belief that the U.S. Constitution should be interpreted by judges according to how the nation’s founders thought.

President Trump, for the first time in history, has effectively farmed out the approval process for federal court judges and even Supreme Court justices he nominates, to the Federalist Society.

The award to Barr is being condemned by notable Catholics, including Sister Prejean, and Father James Martin, a Jesuit priest and editor-at-large at America magazine.

 

 

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

Mississippi Secretary of State Calls for More Christians to Be Elected to Office Because ‘The End Times’ Are Here

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Mississippi Secretary of State Michael Watson is calling for more Christians to be elected to office “today more than ever before,” because “the end times” are here.

Watson made his remarks at a National Day of Prayer event at the Mississippi Coliseum in Jackson on Thursday, as the Mississippi Free Press reports.

“I believe we need Christian men and women in office today more than ever before. And if you’re a believer, if you’re a member of the church, you understand the signs of the times right now,” Watson said. “In the last few years, no more than ever before in the history of the church, we see the end times.”

On Friday Watson appeared to try to clean up his remarks – but only to a degree.

“So enjoyed our National Day of Prayer service at the Coliseum,” he wrote on Facebook. “It was a wonderful time of prayer and worship shared by a group reflective of all walks of life here in Mississippi. I was honored to pray for our elected leaders, and trust the Lord will provide more men and women full of Christian character to step up and serve. This world definitely needs more salt and light!”

“Salt and light” is a reference to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.

Mississippi Free Press senior reporter Ashton Pittman notes that as Secretary of State Watson is the state’s top elections official. That should call into question he support for the separation of church and state as well as how he would treat candidates who are not Christian.

The event was attended by other state political leaders, including Republican Governor Tate Reeves. None appeared to voice any concerns over the top elections official clearly favoring Christians over other potential office hopefuls.

 

Image: Screenshot via Facebook

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

‘It’s Not National God Day’: Pat Robertson’s Reporter Mocked for Attacking Biden’s National Day of Prayer Proclamation

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David Brody, a political analyst for Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), is getting criticized for attacking President Joe Biden’s National Day of Prayer Proclamation. Brody, a Trump acolyte, slammed the proclamation because it doesn’t include the word “God.”

President Biden’s proclamation clearly was written to be as inclusive as possible, something he has strived to achieve with nearly everything he does.

“Throughout our history, Americans of many religions and belief systems have turned to prayer for strength, hope, and guidance,” Biden a devout Catholic, says in the document. “Prayer has nourished countless souls and powered moral movements — including essential fights against racial injustice, child labor, and infringement on the rights of disabled Americans. Prayer is also a daily practice for many, whether it is to ask for help or strength, or to give thanks over blessings bestowed.”

He goes on to talk about the First Amendment protecting “the rights of free speech and religious liberty, including the right of all Americans to pray.”

But that wasn’t good enough for Brody, a far right wing Christian, who appeared to believe that the proclamation should honor only Christians.

Former Trump personal attorney Jenna Ellis chimed in, replying to Brody with this slur:

On social media Brody was blasted.

 

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

Murkowski Challenger Is Pro-Trump Pastor Who Says Being Gay Is a ‘Choice’ but People Are ‘Born Conservative’

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Kelly Tshibaka, the Republican challenging Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski, is a far right wing, pro-Trump religious extremist who believes being gay is “a choice” but being conservative is not.

Tshibaka has written in years past in support of so-called “ex-gay” groups like the now-defunct Exodus International, supported psychologically-damaging “conversion therapy,” said gay people were “molested” as children, and opposes separation of church and state, according to a CNN investigative report.

Tshibaka, a pastor who co-founded a Pentecostal Christian church with her husband, has also written in opposition of popular cultural media, like the “Twilight” books and movies, saying they are pathways for Satan.

“Hundreds of people reject homosexual lifestyles and come out of homosexuality every year,” Tshibaka wrote in a 2002 article for the independent Harvard Law Record for “National Coming Out of Homosexuality Day,” which she wrote was  “a day dedicated to helping homosexuals overcome their sexual tendencies and move towards a healthy lifestyle.”

NCRM found that day was celebrated by the anti-LGBTQ hate group Family Research Council as far back as 1996, as “a response to the Gay and Lesbian Vote Rally.”

In support of “conversion therapy,” Tshibaka wrote that “working with several thousand homosexuals, Exodus has found that the most common cause of homosexuality is sexual molestation during childhood.”

Although not naming them, she also falsely claimed that “ex-gay,” “reparative,” or “conversion therapy” is “not a process that results in repression of continuing desires and attractions. Science has proven homosexual preferences can be authentically changed.”

That is false. Every credible major medical organization that has weighed in on “conversion therapy” has warned against the practice, with most noting it is dangerous. Some who have undergone it have called it “torture,” and some have died by suicide, citing the attempts to “convert” them.

“Homosexuals,” Tshibaka also wrote, “can come out of homosexuality because their preference is not biologically mandated. Unlike race or gender, homosexuality is a choice.”

Although Tshibaka believes being gay “is a choice,” she also believes she was “born conservative.”

“I began shooting guns at age five and grew up with Reagan as king,” she wrote, also at the Harvard Law Record. “I attended the most liberal high school in Alaska and arguably the most conservative university in Texas. Some would say I was born conservative — it’s not a choice.”

In that same article Tshibaka touted her conservative bona fides, including her belief that the U.S. Constitution does not mandate separation of church and state.

“What does it mean to me to be a conservative? It means I love my guns. Big government is a big problem. Abortion cannot be justified. There is no wall of separation between church and state. Your money is yours alone. And we are bound by an overarching moral code that even the Supreme Court can’t legislate around.”

She also “wrote about the dangers of witchcraft and the occult, specifically targeting the ‘Twilight’ book and movie series, CNN’s K-File reports. “She called it ‘evil and we should not read or watch it.'”

“Some say this book is harmless, that it promotes Christian values, and that it does not promote anything wicked at all. But Satan does not usually look repulsive, horrific, and evil on the outside,” she wrote in an October 2009 blog post.
“Make no mistake: ‘Twilight’ is a perfect example of how the enemy twists, perverts, and ridicules the things of God. This is his m.o. This is how he works,” Tshibaka added.

And she claims there is “a link between drugs and witchcraft,” writing: “Perhaps this explains why many people who have used illegal drugs experience demonic oppression.”

Tshibaka co-founded a Pentecostal church, and one of the tenets of that Christian sect is speaking in tongues, as the official news site for Assemblies of God, the largest Pentecostal denomination, notes.

 

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