Reuters blog archive
Religious publishers in the United States are busy these days, releasing such new books as a biography of pop music phenom and devout Christian Justin Bieber -- entitled “Belieber!: Fame, Faith and The Heart of Justin Bieber.” Other tomes mix spirituality with memoir and self-help topics. New editions of the Bible have also been released recently, as well as e-books and audio book downloads by popular religious authors.
“Both in dollars and units sold, the industry is back in line with its historical growth of the last decade,” since the recession, said Byron Williamson, head of Worthy Publishing in Nashville, a center for religious publishing in the United States that some say is second only to New York City for book publishing.
Worthy Publishing ships “Belieber!” to stores on Sept. 27. The book describes Bieber’s incredible popularity and Williamson said it is suited for teenage fans and for mystified parents of children who idolize the star, many of whom memorize his song lyrics.
The evangelical Christian broadcaster whose much-ballyhooed Judgment Day prophecy went conspicuously unfulfilled on Saturday has a simple explanation for what went wrong -- he miscalculated. Instead of the world physically coming to an end on May 21 with a great, cataclysmic earthquake, as he had predicted, Harold Camping, 89, said he now believes his forecast is playing out "spiritually," with the actual apocalypse set to occur five months later, on October 21.
The U.S. evangelical Christian broadcaster predicting that Judgment Day will come on Saturday says he expects to stay close to a TV or radio to monitor the unfolding apocalypse. Harold Camping, 89, previously made a failed prediction that Jesus Christ would return to Earth in 1994.
Rising Christian anger in mainly Muslim Malaysia over the government's handling of a case involving seized Bibles could complicate Prime Minister Najib Razak's bid to win back the support of minorities ahead of an early general election. The row over 35,100 imported Malay language Bibles and Christian texts impounded by Customs authorities comes amid a legal battle on the right of non-Muslims to use the Arabic word "Allah" and could raise ethno-religious tensions in the country. The Bibles were seized in 2009 but the case was only made public in January.
from Oddly Enough Blog:
Check it out. A new edition of the Bible, available tomorrow, is replacing words such as "booty" and "holocaust" to "better reflect modern understanding."
I am not making this up.
"Holocaust" is being changed to "burnt offerings," so that readers who are easily confused won't think the Bible is talking about the 1940s Holocaust.
A new edition of one the most popular English-language Bibles will offer substitutes for words such as "booty" and "holocaust" to better reflect modern understanding. Nearly 50 scholars from all faiths and a committee of Roman Catholic bishops have labored since 1994 over the first fresh edition of the New American Bible since 1970, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said on Wednesday.
The changes go beyond a few words being altered, and include freshly-written notes that should help readers better understand the Catholic Cchurch's interpretation of biblical concepts, Sperry said. The revisions more accurately reflect translations of ancient Hebrew and Greek versions of the Old Testament and the constant evolution of modern-day language.
The Church of England has voted to use more accessible language during baptisms to help it connect better with congregations, especially non church-goers. Members attending the Church's General Synod, or parliament, in London, agreed that the Liturgical Commission should provide supplementary material to help prevent the eyes of worshippers "glazing over" during important parts of the service.
The Reverend Tim Stratford, from Liverpool, said on Wednesday his motion was "not a request for christenings without Christianity." Quite the opposite. "I am not asking for the language of Steven Gerrard," he said, referring to the Liverpool and England soccer star. "Just references that could be understood by the majority."
Using the Bible as its guide, Texas-based energy company Zion Oil and Gas has searched for oil in the Holy Land for a decade. The company uses a map of the 12 ancient tribes of Israel and the biblical assertion - "the foot of Asher to be dipped in oil on the head of Joseph" - as an unlikely guide to help it decide where to drill. (Photo: A worker stands on an oil rig belonging to Zion Oil and Gas in Karkur, northern Israel October 17, 2010/Nir Elias)
Sitting beneath an 18-storey rig in northern Israel, Zion's CEO Richard Rinberg translates that reference by pointing to an area on the map where the territory of Asher - long and thin and shaped like a leg - once pushed into the land that belonged to Joseph's sons.
Muslims in southern Malawi have been burning Bibles in protest against their distribution in Islamic schools by Gideons International, a senior Muslim Association of Malawi official said on Tuesday.
Sheikh Imran Sharif, the association's secretary general, said the burning of Bibles was carried out by a few Muslim fanatics and the association has ordered them to stop. The Muslim protest has been widely criticised in secular Malawi, which has had little religious friction.
from Oddly Enough Blog:
Okay, enough is enough.
I appreciate science as much as the next person. I understand there are at least 5,000 feet in a mile. I totally get it that Fahrenheit and Celsius are different scales, and that for instance minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit is, um, let's see, minus 40 degrees Celsius.
But here is a new scientific study saying Moses may not have parted the Red Sea. Scientists say a strong wind that blew through the night could have pushed the waters back in the way described in biblical writings and the Koran.