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SBC President Barber reveals criteria for new task force appointees

FARMERSVILLE, Texas (BP) – Southern Baptist Convention President Bart Barber has unveiled his desired skillset for appointees to an Abuse Reform Implementation Task Force approved by messengers at the 2022 SBC Annual Meeting.
Today in missions: Deadly crises like Somalia starved of aid
MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — More than two dozen children have died of hunger in the past two months in a single hospital in Somalia. Dr. Yahye Abdi Garun has watched their emaciated parents stumble in from rural areas gripped by the driest drought in decades. And yet no humanitarian aid arrives.
Bone cancer, brain hemorrhage not stopping 'God's man' Tony Dickerson
COLUMBUS, Ga. – Tony Dickerson makes his way into the pulpit, his voice unmistakable in its rhythm and intensity. “I want to tell you friends, God is in this place,” he declares with a boldness that fills the auditorium at Pinehurst Baptist Church. “And don’t you for one minute doubt it. He is here, and we are going to have a meeting with Him.” People settle into their seats, eager to be taken on an adventure through the Bible by the pastor who has been serving the same Columbus church for the past 50 years, an almost unheard of tenure.
WWII Medal of Honor recipient to lie in state at US Capitol
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Hershel W. “Woody” Williams, the last remaining Medal of Honor recipient from World War II, will lie in state at the U.S. Capitol, U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin announced at a memorial on Sunday where Williams was remembered for his courage, humility and selflessness.
Southern Baptist chaplains serve soldiers, refugees during Ukraine crisis
As Americans celebrate July 4, thousands of members of the U.S. Armed Services are sacrificing to maintain peace and defend the freedom that the United States and many other nations enjoy, and chaplains are there with them, providing the spiritual support they want and need. In early 2022 the reality of an impending Russian invasion of the Ukraine reverberated throughout the United States Armed Services community and members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. By the end of January, U.S. forces were put on high alert to provide support to NATO allies in Eastern Europe.
Impact of Roe v. Wade's reversal appears weeks away, maybe longer, in Georgia
DULUTH, Ga. – Abortions continue in Georgia nearly a week after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized the procedure 50 years ago. Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr filed a brief in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday, asking that the state’s law banning abortions after a heartbeat is detected be allowed to take effect immediately. Instead, the 11th Circuit gave lawyers three weeks to file written briefs addressing how the Supreme Court decision impacts the “heartbeat law.”
Baptist Life

‘Cooperation is not only biblical, it's necessary if we're going to reach Georgia’

Here in Georgia, we are unchanging in our resolve to keep the gospel as our main focus. Resourcing and equipping churches to reach the 8 million lost people in our state is the mission we act upon every single day. That's what's on your heart, and that's what's on our heart, because that's what's on God's heart. This mission is why Georgia Baptists acted quickly to address critical issues over the past few years.
FRESNO (BP) – A recently-enacted California state law that requires additional levels of abuse prevention training and implementation complements Southern Baptists’ resolve to care for children, one state convention leader said. And, it provides a window into the future for other states.
NASHVILLE (BP) – Giving through the National Cooperative Program Allocation Budget is beginning to show increased outside economic pressure as consumer prices continue to rise. With inflation the highest it’s been in a generation, church and missions giving is seeing a downturn. For the second time in three months, Cooperative Program giving failed to meet the anticipated monthly budget, but still remains more than $10.6 million ahead for the fiscal year with three months remaining.
As followers of Christ, when people are hurting, we want to encourage them and comfort them. We long for words that will lessen their pain. 
NASHVILLE (BP) – The theme and the officers for the 2023 SBC Pastors’ Conference have been announced by conference president Daniel Dickard. The theme for the conference, scheduled for June 11-12 in New Orleans, will be “Character Matters in Ministry: Beatitudes of a Pastor.” Eight speakers will preach through the Beatitudes found in Matthew 5.

Georgia monument damaged by bomb

ELBERTON, Ga. (AP) — A rural Georgia monument has been bombed, damaging one of four granite panels that some people have dubbed “America's Stonehenge.” The bombing comes weeks after a Republican candidate for governor claimed the Georgia Guidestones are satanic and called for their demolition.

Murder conviction overturned for man who shot wife in SUV

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s highest court has thrown out a murder conviction for a once-prominent Atlanta attorney who fatally shot his wife as they rode in an SUV. The unanimous opinion says the jury should have had the option of a misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter charge. Seventy-nine-year-old Claud “Tex” McIver was convicted in 2018 of felony murder, aggravated assault, influencing a witness and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony in the September 2016 killing of his wife, 64-year-old Diane McIver.

New census data shows how Georgia changed from 2020 to 2021

ATLANTA – Georgia’s population increased between July 2020 and July 2021, according to annual data from the Census Bureau. The state’s 2021 population was roughly 10.8 million, an increase of almost 74,000 residents, or about 0.7%, over 2020. 

Gov. Brian Kemp extends suspension of Georgia gas taxes through mid-August

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia's governor is extending the suspension of the state's motor fuel tax through mid-August. Gov. Brian Kemp on Friday signed an executive order extending the suspension for a second time. The order also suspends the state sales tax on locomotive fuel.

New report details missed chances to stop Uvalde shooting

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A new report on the Uvalde elementary school massacre in Texas says a police officer had a chance to open fire on the gunman but missed it while waiting for permission to shoot. The report also says some of the 21 victims at Robb Elementary School likely “could have been saved” on May 24 had they received medical attention sooner.

Fed: Sharply higher rates may be needed to quell inflation

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve officials were concerned at their meeting last month that consumers were starting to anticipate higher inflation, and they signaled that much higher interest rates could be needed to restrain it. The policymakers also acknowledged, in minutes from their meeting released Wednesday, that their rate hikes could weaken the economy.

July 4 parade shooting suspect expected to appear in court

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. (AP) — The man charged with killing seven people when he unleashed a hail of bullets on an Independence Day parade from a rooftop was expected in court Wednesday. Authorities are facing questions about how he was allowed to to buy several guns, despite threatening violence. The alleged gunman was charged with seven counts of murder Tuesday.

Appeals arguments set on immigrants brought to US as kids

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Immigrant advocates are hoping a federal appeals court will uphold an Obama-era program that prevents the deportation of thousands of immigrants brought into the United States as children. A federal judge in Texas last year declared the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program illegal — although he agreed to leave the program intact for those already benefitting from it while his order is appealed.

South African president decries deaths of 21 teens in tavern

EAST LONDON, South Africa (AP) — South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said the deaths of 21 teenagers in a nightclub tragedy is a crime and South African officials must increase steps to prevent alcohol from being illegally sold to youths. Ramaphosa spoke to more than a thousand mourners at the funeral in East London for the young people who died at a tavern nearly two weeks ago. It’s still not known what caused the deaths of the young people, one just 13 years old, whose bodies were found in the Enyobeni tavern.

Cairo's historic Nile River houseboats removed in govt push

CAIRO (AP) — An Egyptian government push to remove the string of houseboats that dot Cairo’s Nile River banks has seen their numbers dwindle from several dozen to just a handful. Houseboats are a Cairo tradition that dates back to the 1800s. Government efforts to remove them have drawn criticism in Egypt, where residents are mourning the loss of not just their homes but a way of life.

North Macedonia: 47 police officers injured in protests

SKOPJE, North Macedonia (AP) — Police in North Macedonia say a protest over a proposal aiming to break a deadlock on the country’s efforts to join the European Union has left 47 police officers injured. The injuries occurred after a group of mostly young people broke off from the main protest, throwing stones, metal bars, eggs and Molotov cocktails at the parliament building late Tuesday.

UK's Johnson vows to stay in job after top ministers quit

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said he plans to stay in power despite the resignations of two top Cabinet ministers and a slew of more junior officials. Johnson told lawmakers Wednesday that “the job of a prime minister in difficult circumstances when you’ve been handed a colossal mandate is to keep going.” Johnson’s hold on power has been shaken by the resignations of Treasury chief Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid.
My initial reaction to photos showing women using their children at pro-abortion protests was anger. But then the Lord broke my heart.
People watch us and notice what we do. You never know who is watching; thus, we should always be on our best behavior. 
Community newspapers are dying at the rate of two per week in the U.S. Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, Media and Integrated Marketing Communications delivered that sobering news in a report this week. And it is indeed sobering because newspapers play such a crucial role in our culture, serving as mirrors of sorts that allow us to see ourselves – warts, blemishes and all.
Editor's note: With tensions high following the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, here are recommendations from Brotherhood Mutual, a major insurer of churches, on how to handle demonstrations on church grounds.
Living Hope Supportive Maternal Residence, the first residence registered in accordance with “Betsy’s Law,” opened Tuesday. Pregnant women can stay at the home up to 18 months after their child is born, receiving support, care and a comfortable and safe place to live.

US indexes shake off an early slump and eke out gains

Major stock indexes shook off an early slump and ended with meager gains on Wall Street Tuesday as worries about the economy continue to weigh on markets. Oil prices slumped, bringing the price of U.S. crude back below $100 a barrel for the first time since early May. Tech stocks staged a turnaround and ended higher.

Many won't rely on virtual options after COVID: AP-NORC poll

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new poll shows that many Americans don’t expect to rely on the digital services that became commonplace during the pandemic after COVID-19 subsides, even though many think it’s a good thing if those options remain available in the future. The poll comes from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

Inflation hits record 8.6% for 19 countries using the euro

LONDON (AP) — Inflation in countries using the euro set another eye-watering record, pushed higher by a huge increase in energy costs fueled partly by Russia’s war in Ukraine. Annual inflation in the eurozone’s 19 countries hit 8.6% in June, surging past the 8.1% recorded in May.

Stocks slump, closing out worst quarter since early 2020

Stocks fell again on Wall Street Thursday, closing out the worst quarter for the market since the onset of the pandemic in early 2020. The S&P 500 index lost 0.9%. It's now down 21% since hitting a record high at the beginning of the year, having entered a bear market earlier in June. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.8% and the Nasdaq fell 1.3%.

Delta pays $10.5 million to settle post office allegations

WASHINGTON (AP) — Delta Air Lines has agreed to pay $10.5 million to settle charges it falsified information about deliveries of international mail, including mail sent to U.S. soldiers overseas. The Justice Department said Thursday that Delta was under contract to the Postal Service when it falsified records about deliveries from 2010 to 2016.

Hampered Nadal gets past Fritz at Wimbledon; Kyrgios next

WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — Rafael Nadal extended his Grand Slam winning streak to 19 matches with a 3-6, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, 7-6 (10-4) victory over 11th-seeded Taylor Fritz in the Wimbledon quarterfinals. Nadal is seeking a third Wimbledon championship and 23rd major title overall. He is perfect at the four most important tournaments in 2022.

Riley homers, Anderson shines as Braves beat Cards 7-1

ATLANTA (AP) — Austin Riley homered and drove in three runs, Ian Anderson allowed one run in a bounce-back start, and the Atlanta Braves beat the struggling St. Louis Cardinals 7-1. Riley hit a two-run homer and William Contreras also went deep in the first inning.

Braves have moment of silence in memory of announcer Motter

ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Braves paid tribute to their longtime public address announcer, Casey Motter, on Monday night in a ceremony before the team’s first home game since his death last week. Following a video tribute to Motter, a moment of silence was observed in his memory before the game against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Swanson's 3-run double helps Braves outlast Cardinals, 6-3

Dansby Swanson hit a three-run double in a five-run second inning and the Atlanta Braves held off the St. Louis Cardinals 6-3 in a game delayed more than 2 1/2 hours by rain. St. Louis loaded the …