Bible Archaeology

New Website Dedicated to the Basilica of the Annunciation of Nazareth

As announced by the Custody of the Holy Land:

The website, which is in four languages (Italian, English, French and Spanish), presents up-to-date and in-depth information grouped into different thematic sections which accompany visitors throughout their discovery of the Holy Land where it all began, thanks to Mary’s “yes” and the tender welcoming of her husband Joseph.

Using the buttons on the hompage, you can access the Virtual Tour of the Holy Land and the Nazareth Pilgrim Office site, which offers a vast amount of information for anybody who wants to celebrate in Nazareth.

This work concludes the quintet of sites published with the Renewal Project for the Sanctuaries’ websites: Holy Sepulchre, Capernaum, Bethlehem, Gethsemane and Nazareth…

We hope that the many pilgrims and visitors wishing to discover the Holy Land of the Lord will appreciate our work, and we wish them a pleasant visit at the website: www.nazareth-en.custodia.org

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Church

Churches Intensify Campaign Against TopTV Porn Plans

Gateway News:

Senior Christian leaders who met in Pretoria yesterday (July 31, 2013) say that if ailing pay-TV provider TopTV goes ahead with its plans to launch three pornography channels they will intensify a nationwide boycott of the broadcaster and its supporters.

TopTV hopes that the addition of the porn channels, which was approved by broadcasting regulator ICASA in April 2013, will help to save the business. The porn launch is being held up by the business rescue process which includes negotiations with Chinese broadcaster and prospective shareholder StarTimes.

In a statement released after yesterday’s meeting, the Christian leaders say research overwhelmingly indicates that easy access to pornography – whether on the internet or television – is harmful to women and children and destructive to marriage and families.

“As a result, the undersigned Christian leaders and its affiliate organisations in South Africa reiterate our commitment to the nationwide boycott of TopTV, its advertisers, sponsors and retail partners,” says the statement.

The church leaders say they will immediately cancel the boycott if TopTV scraps its porn plans and commits to providing family-friendly content.

Spiralling rates of rape, sexual violence
“The Christian Church is tragically aware of the spiralling rates of rape and other forms of sexual violence and abuse of women and children in South Africa. We are therefore horrified that a government agency like ICASA would provide a failed business a license to broadcast three hard-core pornographic channels in a nation where a woman or child is raped or sexually abused every few minutes,” say the Christian leaders.

The statement cites a media report that records rapes of elderly women in various parts of SA and reports an expert opinion that rape of the elderly is on the increase.

“We are extremely concerned about governments failure to effectively combat the widespread abuse of women, children and the elderly in South Africa. The South African Government’s indirect condoning of the broadcast of hard-core pornography on television, coupled with its failure to significantly reduce sexual crimes, makes South Africa one of the most dangerous countries in the world for women, children and the elderly to live. We ask why, when governments like that of Great Britain are introducing legislation to restrict access to pornography on the Internet, our government insists on liberalising an already liberal broadcasting regime.

“We, the undersigned, as Christian leaders in South Africa, call on our government to fulfil its constitutional obligations to restore the safety and dignity of women, children and the elderly in SA by urgently amending the Broadcasting Act to prohibit all forms of pornography on South African television. We further encourage government to install filters on the internet at tier-one level to block all sexually explicit content entering the country. This measure will serve to protect vulnerable children from being exposed to hard-core pornography on the internet, including adults being harassed by unwanted guerrilla marketing tactics by unscrupulous porn merchants,” concludes the statement.

The statement is signed by:

The Apostolic Faith Mission of SA (AFM/AGS) – Rev Isak Burger (President)
The Assemblies of God of SA (AOG) – Rev Ernest Hlophe (General Secretary)
The Baptist Union of SA – Rev Angelo Scheepers (General Secretary)
The Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference – Archbishop Stephen Brislin(President)
Church of England in SA (CESA) – Rev Desmond Inglesby (Presiding Bishop)
The Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) – Rev Braam Hanekom (Moderator)
The Full Gospel Church of SA – Rev Anton van Deventer (Moderator)
The Methodist Church of Southern Africa – Rev Ziphozihle Siwa (Presiding Bishop)
The Evangelical Alliance of SA – (TEASA) – Rev Moss Ntlha (Secretary General)
The Association of Vineyard Churches in SA – Rev Costa Mitchell (National Director)
Christian Family Church SA – Rev Johnny Slabbert (COO)
His People Christian Churches SA – Rev Gilian Davids
Shofar Churches SA – Rev Fred May
Family Policy Institute – Errol Naidoo (Founder and Director).

Church

Man Sues Israel, Italy for Death of Christ

In the Jerusalem Post:

A Kenyan lawyer has filed a petition with the International Court of Justice in The Hague, suggesting that the trial and crucifixion of Jesus Christ was unlawful, and the State of Israel among others should be held responsible, Kenyan news outlet the Nairobian reported on Friday.

Dola Indidis, a lawyer and former spokesman of the Kenyan Judiciary is reportedly attempting to sue Tiberius (emperor of Rome, 42 BCE-37 CE), Pontius Pilate, a selection of Jewish elders, King Herod, the Republic of Italy and the State of Israel. . . .

“I filed the case because it’s my duty to uphold the dignity of Jesus and I have gone to the ICJ to seek justice for the man from Nazareth,” Indidis told the Nairobian. “His selective and malicious prosecution violated his human rights through judicial misconduct, abuse of office bias and prejudice.”

Indidis apparently named the states of Italy and Israel in the lawsuit because upon the attainment of independence, the two states incorporated the laws of the Roman Empire, those in force at the time of the crucifixion. . . .

“I am suing as a friend,” he said.

Indidis insisted on the validity of his case, saying “I know with a matter of fact and truth we have a good case with a high probability of success and I hope it is done in my lifetime.”

When asked about the case, an official from the ICJ told legal news website Legal Cheek, “The ICJ has no jurisdiction for such a case. The ICJ settles disputes between states. It is not even theoretically possible for us to consider this case.”