CHOSEN: End Times Newsletter – Issue 123
The Minister’s Corner
“You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”John 8:32
JESUS THE SAVIOR
Submitted by Johanna
Jesus was born one day many many years ago
And though it was so long ago his light is still aglow
He grew up as a boy and then he was a man
And did many miracles that only the Son of God can
He carried his cross to Calvary to suffer and die and bleed
So that everyone who believes on him would be with him indeed
He went back to his place in heaven from which he came
And loves every person ever born, man, woman, and child the same
If you want to go to the place he has prepared for all who believe
Just ask him to be your Savior and your sin you'll try to leave
He will come into you heart and forgive you of all your sin
All that he asks is a place in your heart for him to enter in
If you ask him into your heart, he'll never lead you astray
He'll be in your heart forever and be there forever to stay
You will be God's child forever and always have a friend
He will love you no matter what and be with you to the end
You'll have a reservation in heaven that can be never taken away
His salvation is a free gift, you can never earn it in any way
Though the world is full of trouble on every side and war
When he calls us home to heaven, we'll be safe forevermore
Matthew 1:21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to name Him Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins."
~ Cindy Wyatt ~
Though None Go With Me
“Though None Go With Me, Still I Will Follow…”
The words are actually from an old hymn and they are such beautiful words that sum up what my life has become since accepting the call to serve our heavenly Father and Her son Christ Jesus.
A friend of mine and I were talking recently, and I had said to her how Father has filled my life with so much more than I’d ever expected and fulfilled me in ways that before coming to know Her, would not have been possible. I was a different person not long ago, who was searching because I felt less than whole. I couldn’t pinpoint why though, and I placed the blame on many things, people, even circumstances, but the truth of it was that what I was missing was Father in my life and Her Spirit deeply embedded within my heart.
Since that time, my heart has been made whole and even overflows. Coming to know and understand Father is no different than building any relationship. As our relationship has grown and matured over time, I have continued to change and look upon not only the world in a different way, but life itself.
At the time when I accepted Father’s calling, I didn’t know where it would lead me but I have always held on tightly to the following words through whatever tests have come my way, “Show me your way, LORD, my heart is set on fulfilling Your work, wherever it may lead.”
What I didn’t realize back then, was that I made a commitment to Father when I accepted Her calling; one of obedience, faith, loyalty and love; She also made a commitment to me. Yes, to me.
The Protection of the Most High
The one who lives under the protection of the Most High dwells in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the LORD, "My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust." He Himself will deliver you from the hunter's net, from the destructive plague.
One thing I’ve learned is that Father is faithful to those who are faithful to Her. It is not a one-sided relationship at all. And the more time that passes, and the closer our relationship grows, the more I also come to more fully understand and experience the nature of our Creator.
Yes, there have been things, and even relationships with some people, that I have given up in exchange for continuing my service to Father and to Christ. But Father has given me, so much more that it doesn’t even seem fair to mention these things at all. Because you see, these things that I’ve given up are only temporary. But the things She has given me, are for forever.
So when people ask me, how having Father in my life has changed my life, I really don’t even know where to begin, because it’s like asking a flower how the rain made it grow. The flower wouldn’t be able to tell you exactly how the process happened, just that it did, and that the flower flourished and became more beautiful over time and just as there was a plan to provide all the things needed for for the flower to grow, there is a plan for me.
And that is why…
Though none go with me, still I will follow; No turning back, no turning back…
One of the things that the current Tribulation can be related to is a fiery furnace. In this furnace, we are pretty much placed in grave situations, and those that burn against us can be like those that attempt to engulf us whole like serpents. In fact, this planet has become a den of serpents, the prison where Satan and his demons are being held for Armageddon. And even to this moment, Satan is still a ruler and authority over the nations of this current world that we reside in. Because of this, we may find ourselves in the same situations that Job and Daniel found themselves in, when Job was tested when he lost so much, and when Daniel and his companions who worshiped Yahweh were thrown into the fiery furnace by Nebuchadnezzar. In fact, the situation that Daniel and two of his companions found themselves in when faced to worship a false god or be thrown into a furnace can be very much likened to what we are currently experiencing.
In Daniel 3, Daniel and his other two companions found themselves faced with a dilemma where they were to either fall down and worship a false idol, or be put through such a severe fire that even the flames killed the servants who carried the three up to the furnace to be thrown in. Yet, even throughout the ordeal, the three did not leave their faithfulness to Father Yahweh, and even though they still were cast into the furnace, no harm came to them. There is no difference in this in what is occurring now.
Proverbs 17:3 — A crucible is for silver and a smelter for gold,
but the LORD is a tester of hearts.
The fire that Father burns with is of love, and Father's love is also of justice, and can burn away all impurities and lawlessness within one's heart.
Job 23:10 — Yet He knows the way I have taken; when He has tested me, I will emerge as pure gold.
These times are also especially trying, and perhaps can be difficult to understand because of a lot of…rather horrible things that have come to pass.
Revelation 13:10 — If anyone is destined for captivity, into captivity he goes. If anyone is to be killed with a sword, with a sword he will be killed. Here is the endurance and the faith of the saints.
Even though difficult things may occur to us, it is important to keep up the hope and faith in Father and Christ. Not only in rescue, but also for a just and righteous future, that Father's Light and Justice will prevail over all. In paraphrasing what a brother has already shared, Father does not allow us to be tested beyond what we are capable, and Father also helps us to increase our endurance.
Amongst all these things, what Father does is not for our destruction, but for our benefit. Satan, regardless of how powerful the lies have been strewn to make people believe, is still greatly limited by what Father allows, just as Satan was not able to touch a hair on Job's body until Father allowed, so that growth and prosperity could be also grown righteously and wonderfully, with a solid foundation that will not crumble.
With this, and amongst the birth pangs that are being currently seen and continue to grow, we can be patient and continually hopeful for Father's deliverance and the establishment of Her righteous Kingdom upon this planet that will endure forever.
Romans 12:12 — Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer.
Nourishment From The Throne
(Concerning the "UFO" fleet over Chile)
Regina: Another nice video
Cherubic Commander: Representing the tribes of ancient Israel. All is symbolism. The stage is being set for the coming invasion. Think of "D DAY" in history. This will be "Y DAY." Yahweh's Day of retribution against Her enemies. The signs are present. Who has insight to understand them? Few. They simply see UFO's and think of aliens from other worlds.
2 Peter 2:4 "For if God didn't spare the angels who sinned, but threw them down into Tartarus and delivered them to be kept in chains of darkness until judgment;"
What is, and where is Tartarus?
Psalm 107:10 "Others sat in darkness and gloom — prisoners in cruel chains —"
Psalm 2:3 "Let us tear off their chains and free ourselves from their restraints."
What applies to Father's side of the spiritual war can also apply to the opposing side. Demons have been freed from restraints, and many are keeping tabs on each of you while in the flesh they have taken on. Be aware that they are limited by being chained to fleshly bodies. As it was before the global flood, they are in a less than powerful position because of becoming flesh. With the flesh come limitations.
Job 38:31 "Can you fasten the chains of the Pleiades or loosen the belt of Orion?"
Two heavenly bodies mentioned. They were mentioned for more than what the Scripture appears to relate. Meditate and research those two cited within that Scripture. Look for the revelations that will come to each of you.
Psalm 107:10 "Others sat in darkness and gloom — prisoners in cruel chains —"
Also applies to the "others" that sit in the Orange prison of Father's wisdom of containment. Including those of humankind in dark realms.
Regina: Per Wikipedia, Tartarus is related to Greek Mythology and is basically hell – siting it as being similar to the Old Testament Sheol.
Pleiades is also related to Greek Mythology, as the seven sisters, Orion as a giant huntsman, but both are also each a cluster of stars.
As I ponder it in relation to the scripture given, it feels as though Tartarus isn't necessarily speaking of The Pit, (or is dual in meaning) but of the Detention plane where they are bound and forbidden from departing. The darkness is being separated from Father's light and wisdom.
Jeshaiah: That was coming to mind about Tartarus, too, in that the Detention Plane is referenced as Tartarus.
Concerning the chains of the Pleiades or the belt of Orion, … the chains seem to be directly related to the chains that keep the prisoners in darkness. A belt can be related to a restraint, and in piecing together the concepts of Father having created the constellations in a particular way, could also show how Father has the ability to allow for certain restrictions to be "loosened," and at the same time, has created certain things to have certain restrictions.
Something that just came to mind is how although the demons have been freed from certain restraints of not being able to materialize, they still take on another restraint of the flesh…so in a way, restraints of one kind were just traded up for another. At the same time, those demons that are offed or are sentenced to the Orange Plane earlier simply go from one prison to another.
What is interesting is that the chains of the Pleiades are consistent of seven stars, so it's like a perfect control and restraint, while the belt of Orion is of three stars, a restraining tool held in Unity. It's like Father's creation of control and restraint having a perfect balance such that those held under or to a particular limitation cannot escape the limitation.
This could also help to strengthen our faith in Father, in showing that regardless of whether the demons are keeping tabs on each of us while in the flesh, Father has a particular setup to protect Her children.
Regina: All good observations, bro. I was also thinking about how angels are also referred to as stars, and how Father controls the heavens and the earth… and how in relation to the spiritual war, Father maintains balance and fairness.
Deborah: 4 Facts, 2 verses and 1 fiction about the Pleiades found on the internet.
The cluster is dominated by hot blue stars.
The Pleiades are a prominent sight in the Northern Hemisphere in winter and the Southern Hemisphere in summer.
The distance to the Pleiades is an important first step in the so-called cosmic distance ladder, a sequence of distance scales for the whole universe.
Adding up the chain of 7 and belt of 3 makes 10.
Job 9:9 He makes [the stars]: the Bear, Orion, the Pleiades, and the constellations of the southern sky.
Amos 5:8 The One who made the Pleiades and Orion, who turns darkness into dawn and darkens day into night, who summons the waters of the sea and pours them out over the face of the earth — Yahweh is His name.
Signs From Above
“He rescues and delivers, He performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth, for He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.” Daniel 6:27
UFO sighting puzzles N.L. residents
January 27, 2010
Residents in Harbour Mille, a tiny community on Newfoundland's south coast, want to know what they saw in the sky Monday night. Darlene Stewart said she was outside taking pictures of the sunset when she saw something fly overhead. She snapped a picture of the object in an attempt to zoom in on it to see what it was. "Even with the camera, I couldn't make it out until I put it on the computer," she told CBC News. "I knew then it wasn't an airplane. It was something different."
UFO in Triangular Light Formation Filmed in Dublin, Ireland-Jan. 25, 2010
Galactic Round Table
Jan 25, 2010
A UFO with a triangular formation of lights was filmed flying at “incredible speeds” over the River Liffey in Dublin, Ireland late last week. The Sun had Nick Pope, who probed mystery sightings for the Ministry of Defense for three years, assess the video Friday. “The video seems to have been taken through a night scope and presumably shows things not visible to the naked eye,” said Pope.
UFO IN CLOUDS
Weekly World News
January 29, 2010
JAKARTA – New footage has emerged of what appears to be a UFO hiding behind a cover of clouds! UFOs sightings that occur during the day are much harder to explain away, especially when caught on camera. This video was recently released, supposedly shot in Indonesia: So is it a UFO or just strange weather phenomena? Meteorologist Karsten Brandt believes the footage is actually showing two layers of cloud, one on top of the other, with the upper layer being heavily illuminated by the sunlight.
Multiple witness UFO events in Argentina widely reported, photos and video
All News Web
Jan 27, 2010
A number of UFO sightings that occurred in Argentina late last week and early this week are making the headlines in that country.A number of residents in the province of Santiago del Estero in Argentina reported seeing UFOs overhead last Sunday as well as this Monday. Some witnesses managed to get photos (above and below). An alleged video of the event (below) has come to light, however many UFO researchers regard this type of footage as merely showing a camera effect or artifact caused by pointing the lens at the sun.
Kansas 5-year-old draws UFO after reporting 'round plane with bolts'
Jan, 29th 2010
A Kansas parent is wondering if their 5-year-old's comments about "a round plane with bolts" and subsequent drawing could be an actual UFO sighting, according to testimony from the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) database. The January 25 event occurred as the parent was driving their child home from school. The child made the comment about something she saw in the sky, but the parent, who was driving, was unable to view the object. Two days later, the parent asked the child to make drawings of what she saw.
Signs Down Below
But know this: difficult times will come in the last days. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, without love for what is good, traitors, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to the form of religion but denying its power. 2 Timothy 3:1-5
Save the elephant: ivory trading is set to resume
by Michael McCarthy
January 25, 2010
Two African countries are trying to open a new breach in the worldwide ivory trade ban, which conservationists fear could lead to more African elephants being slaughtered by poachers. Environmental campaigners called on Britain to take a clear lead in opposing the proposals by Tanzania and Zambia to sell their ivory stocks, which will be voted on at the next meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in Qatar in March.
H1N1 Experts Assail 'Fake' Pandemic Claim
by Michael Smith
January 26, 2010
The World Health Organization says its response to the H1N1 influenza pandemic could have been better, but it was not unduly influenced by the pharmaceutical industry, nor was it swept away by media hype. "We are under no illusions that this response was the perfect response," Dr. Keiji Fukuda, the agency's top flu expert, told a hearing being held by the Council of Europe's health committee.
North and South Korea exchange fire near sea border
January 27, 2010
North and South Korea have exchanged fire close to their disputed maritime border, say reports. North Korea twice fired artillery shells into the sea off the South's western coast, said South Korean media. South Korean coastal bases responded to the first volley with warning shots, but no injuries were reported. The North said the firing had been part of an annual military drill and firing would continue, but Seoul said the action was "provocative".
Formaldehyde-Laced Death Trailers to Haiti!?
January 29, 2010
FEMA Trailer Manufacturers Knew About Formaldehyde, Findings Went Undisclosed Via: AP: The trailer industry and lawmakers are pressing the government to send Haiti thousands of potentially formaldehyde-laced trailers left over from Hurricane Katrina — an idea denounced by some as a crass and self-serving attempt to dump inferior American products on the poor. “Just go ahead and sign their death certificate,” said Paul Nelson of Coden, Ala., who contends his mother died because of formaldehyde fumes in a FEMA trailer.
FDIC clocks 15 bank failures so far in 2010
January 29, 2010
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Six more U.S. banks were seized on Friday as regulators continue to close the doors of banks struggling to cope with fallout from the financial crisis. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp (FDIC) said First Regional Bank in Los Angeles, Florida Community Bank, First National Bank of Georgia, American Marine Bank in Washington, Marshall Bank in Minnesota and Community Bank and Trust in Georgia had failed — pushing the tally to 15 banks that have failed this year. The FDIC expects 2010 to be a peak for bank failures as a result of the financial crisis. Last year, 140 banks failed, compared to 25 in 2008 and three in 2007. First-Citizens Bank & Trust Co, of Raleigh, North Carolina, will purchase $2.17 billion in total assets and $1.87 billion in total deposits from First Regional Bank, the FDIC said.
Signs in Humanity
Traffickers Targeting Haiti's Children – Human Organs
January 28, 2010
Trafficking of children and human organs is occurring in the aftermath of the earthquake that devastated parts of Haiti, killed more than 150,000 people, and left many children orphans, Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive said Wednesday. "There is organ trafficking for children and other persons also, because they need all types of organs," Bellerive said in an exclusive interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour.
Boy, 14, shoots his parents dead because he did not want to do chores
by Paul Thompson
January 27, 2010
A 14-year-old boy has been charged with first degree murder in the U.S. after shooting dead his parents when they nagged him to help out with household chores. John Caudle told investigators his mother Joanne Rinebarger had repeatedly told him to take out the rubbish and clean up his room. The teenager spent two days brooding over the row, having removed two pistols from a gun safe in their home. When the argument flared again after Caudle returned home from school last October, he shot dead his 38-year-old mother as she sat watching TV in their living room.
Iraq capital Baghdad rocked by deadly triple bombing
January 25, 2010
At least 36 people have died in three large explosions apparently targeting hotels in the heart of Iraq's capital. More than 70 people were injured in the Baghdad blasts, which officials said were caused by suicide car bombers. They struck near the Sheraton, Babylon and Hamra hotels, which are popular with Western businessmen and media. They came as the government announced Saddam Hussein's ex-defence minister, Ali Hassan al-Majid – also known as Chemical Ali – had been executed.
In Search of The God Particle
January 27, 2010
by Deshpal Sandhu
The topic of Origins is one of my favourite fields of study, so I try to stay as informed as possible on various aspects of this vast subject. Recently The Large Hadron Collider built by CERN near Geneva, Switzerland has been much in the news, particularly in its stated aim to find The God Particle that apparently holds the keys to the mysteries of the Universe. I have been studying a great deal about the LHC and The God Particle or the Higgs boson as it is officially called to try and understand what it all means. I found an interesting article that was published back in 2008 in The National Geographic with glossy photos and all. I perused this article, and others rather carefully, and having done so I found that I was left with more questions than answers.
Behind closed doors, sex trade thrives
The Palm Beach Post
by Jane Musgrave
January 29, 2010
Rick Rose was suspicious of the constant flow of cars visiting a small frame house next to his well-appointed bed and breakfast in one of West Palm Beach's trendiest urban neighborhoods. “We thought it was drug-dealing,'' he said. So he called police. Rose, the president of the Grandview Heights Neighborhood Association, was stunned when federal agents who raided the house said it was a brothel used by a sophisticated ring that brought young Mexican women into the United States and forced them to work as sex slaves.
Arks of Safe Haven
The mission of Arks of Safe Haven is to connect via an extensive network and online message board forum, those individuals and families who have been affected by recent economic downfalls and are in need with those individuals who are ready, willing and capable of providing assistance to those in need with employment, shelter, work, food, clothing and other necessities.
Coupled with our primary mission of delivering the Kingdom Message of Salvation, the assistance of Arks of Safe Haven is available to all who are in need. Our purposeful intention is to follow in the footsteps of Christ as our example, by providing hope to the hopeless and answering the prayers of those who have been forced to live outside of society.
How You Can Help?
In order to provide for those whose outcry of prayers have reached our heavenly Father's ears, Arks of Safe Haven is seeking out those who are able to provide shelter, whether it be an extra bedroom, empty rental property or a work for room and board agreement. Additionally, we also act as a liaison in connecting those with tangible items to donate to those in need like Food, Water, Clothing, & Other Personal Items. We pray that your heart is motivated to make a contribution, no matter how small. Visit http://www.arksofsafehaven.org and view the many posts from those in need to see if you're able to help with advice, prayers or goods & services.
smoothfinisher – I received custody of my 2 grandchildren recently. I live in an 1 bedroom apt. and I have no where for the 11 month old to sleep. I have asked and looked everywhere but living on disability there is no money left over to buy anything with now. Thank you and God Bless, Lori
Signs in Natural Disasters
“You are going to hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, because these things must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.” Matthew 24:6-7
5.0 COSTA RICA
5.3 COSTA RICA
5.0 HINDU KUSH REGION, AFGHANISTAN
5.2 SANTA CRUZ, BOLIVIA
5.4 SANTA CRUZ, BOLIVIA
5.1 NEW BRITAIN REGION, P.N.G.
5.1 SANTA CRUZ ISLANDS
5.4 KEPULAUAN BABAR, INDONESIA
5.2 GUADELOUPE REGION, LEEWARD ISLANDS
5.5 SOLOMON ISLANDS
5.0 SHAANXI-SHANXI BORDER REG, CHINA
5.3 SOUTHWEST INDIAN RIDGE
5.2 SOUTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
5.2 SOUTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
5.3 SOUTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
5.2 ANDREANOF ISLANDS, ALEUTIAN IS.
5.9 CENTRAL PERU
5.2 KODIAK ISLAND REGION, ALASKA
5.2 SOUTH OF KERMADEC ISLANDS
5.5 KYUSHU, JAPAN
5.0 KURIL ISLANDS
5.0 SOUTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
5.1 KEPULAUAN BARAT DAYA, INDONESIA
6.1 PHILIPPINE ISLANDS REGION
5.6 SOUTHERN MID-ATLANTIC RIDGE
5.1 TRISTAN DA CUNHA REGION
5.1 BOUGAINVILLE REGION, P.N.G.
5.2 KEPULAUAN TALAUD, INDONESIA
5.0 LAKE EDWARD REGION, CONGO
5.0 KERMADEC ISLANDS REGION
5.0 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINES
6.0 JUJUY, ARGENTINA
5.0 JAVA, INDONESIA
5.0 JUJUY, ARGENTINA
5.0 GALAPAGOS ISLANDS REGION
YELLOWSTONE – 1,033 Yellowstone quakes recorded in one week. The Volcano Alert Level at Yellowstone National Park remained at “normal” Friday, despite a swarm of earthquakes large enough to trigger seismographs in the Flathead Valley and cause chatter on Twitter. Working around the clock, scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Yellowstone Volcano Observatory had recorded more than 1,033 earthquakes since Monday, including at least eight events over magnitude three. That’s more than half the total annual average in the park, which is 1,600 a year. Despite the flurry of activity, however, many Yellowstone locals haven’t felt a thing, and scientists are calling the swarm of quakes typical for the seismically prone region that is home to one of the world’s larger volcanoes. “This is a big swarm. These things don’t happen very often. They may have a deep volcanic connection, but right now, it seems to be related to tectonics.” There was a similar swarm in 2009. The swarm is on par with an event in 1985 in which scientist recorded more than 3,000 quakes. “It’s interesting, with swarms, the earthquakes can start up small. There’s no one big earthquake, there are just a bunch of smaller quakes that can increase in intensity and go back down.” Scientists have no way of knowing how long the swarm will last, though the one in 1985 went on for months.
HAITI – A 24-year-old man has been rescued alive from the rubble of a ruined hotel in Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince, 11 days after the earthquake. It came hours after Haiti's government declared a formal end to the search for survivors. Rescuers had been alerted by the man's family. The man had probably been helped by the fact that the 5-6m (16-20ft) of debris above him was largely wood, rather than concrete. The man told his rescuers that another four people were trapped with him but that they had stopped moving a couple of days ago. Two people, an 84-year-old woman and a 21-year-old man, were pulled alive from the rubble in Port-au-Prince on Friday. Most search-and-rescue teams will now be leaving Haiti, although some with heavy lifting equipment might stay to help with the clean-up operation and with aid distribution. An estimated 1.5 million people were left homeless by the 7.0-magnitude quake, which killed as many as 200,000 people. 130,000 people have now been relocated out of Port-au-Prince, easing the pressure on overcrowded camps in the city.
HAITI – The death toll from the Haitian earthquake has risen above 150,000 in the capital alone.
Haiti’s desperate food crop outlook – In a normal year, Haiti must start now preparing for the spring planting season, which ends in May. The spring crop usually produces 60 percent of the country’s food. Unfortunately, many families have had to eat or share the seeds they were saving for the next crop. Any improved seed varieties brought in now as aid are all too likely to be hijacked for immediate consumption by the portside mobs and thugs. Almost no chemical fertilizer is available, and Haiti has neither trucks nor usable roads to get it to the farms. Most Haitians are underfed in their good years, with about 60 percent of kids under five suffering anemia and other diseases of malnutrition. Many of the kids will go blind or die due to severe Vitamin A deficiency, because they get few livestock calories. In hurricane years, the people suffer even more. In 2008, for example, the country suffered three hurricanes and a tropical storm. And now the massive earthquake. Food supplies are at urgent risk.
YELLOWSTONE – The swarm of small earthquakes rocking the western part of Yellowstone National Park appears to be abating, with a series of small quakes reported Friday up until 10:41 p.m and no earthquakes reported all night. The 3.0 quake was the latest in more than 1,100 registered earthquakes in a very small area on the western side of the Park, about 10 miles from Old Faithful and nine miles from West Yellowstone. Ten of the earthquakes have been magnitude 3.0 or greater, with a 3.8 magnitude earthquake recorded late Wednesday evening. Other monitoring stations indicate no change at all in activity with the caldera and the Yellowstone supervolcano. [There were two 2.5's, a 2.7 and a 2.8 on Sunday.]
HAITI – Italy's top disaster expert has attacked the US response to the Haiti earthquake, criticising its lack of organisation and the reliance on soldiers with no training in humanitarian operations. He received international acclaim for his handling of an L'Aquila earthquake last April, but he described the U.S. response as "a pathetic situation which could have been much better organised…We are missing a leader, a co-ordination capacity that goes beyond military discipline. The Americans are extraordinary, but when you are facing a situation in chaos, they tend to confuse military intervention with emergency aid, which cannot be entrusted to the armed forces." A contingent of 13,000 US troops and marines is helping relief efforts after the Jan. 12, 7.1-magnitude quake, which has killed at least 150,000 and possibly twice that and left up to 3 million hurt and homeless.
HAITI – A man has been pulled alive from the rubble in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince – two weeks after the earthquake that destroyed the city. It is estimated that more than 130 people have been pulled alive from the rubble in the capital. There is an urgent appeal for more tents for up to a million people left homeless by the tremor. 200,000 tents are needed before the expected start of the rainy season in May. The Haitian government wants to relocate some 400,000 people, currently in makeshift camps across the capital, to temporary tent villages outside the city. But aid workers warned that if the camps were too big they could pose security problems. Haiti has been rattled by at least 50 tremors since the original quake.
Vast crowds of Haitians have massed around aid stations, threatening to overwhelm emergency food handouts against a backdrop of new political and seismic aftershocks. Lines formed outside money transfer agencies, banks, immigration offices and aid distribution centres. Port-au-Prince was rattled by two new earth tremors, two weeks after the deadly earthquake that killed at least 150,000 people, scaring a weary and destitute people from their improvised beds in makeshift camps. "We just can't get used to these quakes. Each aftershock is terrifying and everyone is afraid." The US Geological Survey, which has warned the beleaguered Caribbean nation to expect tremors for the next month, measured the second tremor at 4.4. In the Cite Soleil slum several thousand desperate people converged on a walled police compound to receive sacks of relief supplies, surging against the steel gates as officials struggled to let them in one-by-one. All across the city, ad hoc street committees have hung imploring banners in English and French – "SOS", "We need help here" and "We need food and water " – in desperate attempts to attract aid agencies' attention.
With its helicopters in constant rotation overhead, and foot patrols increasingly in evidence in the city, the US military has assumed a dominant role in the aid operation, and has been largely welcomed by Haitians. Leftist Latin American allies Venezuela, Bolivia and Cuba have criticised the United States, accusing US forces of occupying the country. 20,000 US troops have been sent to Haiti to distribute food and water. A senior Italian official separately deplored a lack of a coordinated international aid effort in Haiti, saying the United States had "too many officers" there and could not find a capable leader. The international relief effort has been hampered by traffic congestion and – so far groundless – security fears, and has yet to get enough aid into the capital Port-au-Prince and flattened towns near the quake's epicentre. With the port only recently reopened, the hub of the aid operation remains the airport. A single road connects the airport, the UN headquarters and the Haitian government's temporary home in a dilapidated police station. A motley caravan of trucks rented by various military and aid organisations snakes down this road, snarling traffic and holding up aid deliveries. Aid organisations fear disease could spread like wildfire if thousands are still living in tent cities when the rains come in April or May. Next comes the phase of long-term reconstruction. "This is going to be more than 10 years of efforts."
The number of U.S. fatalities in the Jan. 12 earthquake in Haiti is nearing 100. Confirmed U.S. deaths now number 60, and another 37 Americans were killed but their identities have not yet been officially established. There are about 4,000 U.S. citizens who have been the subject of inquiries by family members or others since the quake who have yet to be accounted for.
The earthquake may have left clues to petroleum reservoirs that could aid economic recovery in the Western Hemisphere’s poorest nation, a geologist said. The Jan. 12 earthquake was on a fault line that passes near potential gas reserves. The quake may have cracked rock formations along the fault, allowing gas or oil to temporarily seep toward the surface.
YELLOWSTONE – Over eight days, more than 1,270 mostly tiny earthquakes have struck between Old Faithful and West Yellowstone. The strongest dozen or so have ranged between magnitudes 3.0 and 3.8. The largest quakes in the current swarm have included two of magnitude 3.1 and one of magnitude 3.0 late Sunday and early Monday. Relatively mundane fault slippage is believed to be causing the latest quakes. [Other quakes Monday – 2.9, 2.9, 2.8, 2.6 /Tuesday – 2.6 / this morning 2.7, 2.8, 3.1]
HAITI – The acting head of the UN mission in Haiti has said reconstruction will take several decades, following the devastating earthquake two weeks ago. Reconstruction was not starting at zero, but "below zero". The logistics of the relief effort are a nightmare, with Haiti's inadequate infrastructure destroyed and a shortage of vehicles. As many as 200,000 people died in the earthquake on 12 January, while an estimated 1.5 million are now homeless. The UN has estimated that 75% of the capital, Port Au Prince, will have to be rebuilt.
MONTSERRAT – Scientists monitoring the Soufriere Hills Volcano are recording more explosions. Montserratians recently cleaned out ash from their communities after a recent pyroclastic flow. The Montserrat Volcano Observatory reported that a seismic signal was recorded that indicated an explosion had occurred at the volcano. It was smaller than what occurred recently, when scientists said a probable dome had collapsed, resulting in hot rock, ash and gas affecting the northern safe zone of the island. Residents within those areas were told at the time to evacuate immediately.
ALASKA – Mt. Redoubt lets off steam – The meteorological conditions Monday made for an impressive show, with one observer describing what looked like a small mushroom cloud. Redoubt has rumbled off and on for a year now. The last time it was in the news was in late December when a swarm of small earthquakes were reported near Redoubt's summit, prompting the AVO to briefly raise the volcano's alert level to yellow. The alert level Monday was green.
ECUADOR – Tungurahua volcano has been erupting ash for the past several weeks, but the thick clouds of the eastern Andes obscured most of the activity. A break in the clouds enabled the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer aboard NASA’s Terra satellite to observe the eruption on January 23. A tan ash plume stretched 60 km (40 miles) to the southwest of the peak. Ash reached an altitude of 27,000 feet (8,200 meters) – more than 3,000 m (10,000 ft) above the 5023 m (16,480 ft) summit. Observers from the Ecuadorian Instituto Geofísico reported lava fountains and lava blocks cascading down the flanks of the volcano, as well as loud booms and ashfall in the surrounding communities.
TSUNAMI / FREAK WAVES / ABNORMAL TIDES / RISING SEA LEVELS –
HAITI – A small tsunami apparently took the lives of at least seven villagers in the town of Petit Paradis, on Haiti's western coast after the 7.0 earthquake. The relatively small tsunami reached a few hundred yards into the village, which was devastated by the quake. "The sea went back. It sounded like a helicopter … and then the waves came up." The water was higher than the trees. Haiti does not have buoys to measure wave heights, so authorities have to rely on eyewitness accounts to determine whether a tsunami occurred. A tsunami warning was issued at the time of the quake but was discontinued soon after. Out in the distance, a lone tree stands. Residents say it used to be part of the beach, but now it's about 30 yards out in the blue ocean. Villages and towns such as Petit Paradis were forgotten as rescue efforts and food distributions began in Haiti's capital, Port-au-Prince. There wasn't a real effort to save people trapped in the rubble in these communities. "People in the United States have been talking since day one about the outpouring of love from our country. And we keep hearing it and hearing it, but we don't see it. And that's disappointing."
TROPICAL STORMS -
Cyclone Magda made landfall from Collier Bay at around 5 a.m. local time on January 22 in northern Australia. Magda is now dissipating rapidly over land in northern West Australia and will fizzle over interior Australia over the weekend.
Tropical storm Magda could hit parts of Indonesia – The Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency has issued a warning to the public about the possible impact of tropical storm Magda in certain parts of Indonesia. Magda was predicted to hit the eastern part of the country, especially Kupang in East Nusa Tenggara and Merauke, West Papua. A swirl occurring above waters south of Kupang and a low pressure area southeast of Merauke would lead to a concentration of winds over an area stretching over the Java Sea, Bali Sea, West Nusa Tenggara, Banda Sea and Arafura Sea. The storm will trigger heavy rainfall in several areas in Indonesia, followed by strong winds and thunder from Jan. 22 to Jan. 25.
OLGA was 36 nmi NNE of Cairns, Australia.
AUSTRALIA – Some far north Queensland communities are on cyclone watch, with forecasters saying ex-tropical cyclone Olga could reform.
Ex-cyclones Olga and Neville have dumped heavy rain across Queensland, with the state's north and central regions on alert for flooding. Olga crossed the coast north of Port Douglas at about 2pm (AEST) yesterday as a category one cyclone, weaker than the category two system that had been expected. There was little evidence of cyclonic activity as Olga passed over the town. The Bureau of Metrology downgraded the cyclone to a tropical low last night. Olga is currently hovering near Innisfail with winds up to 66km/h, is tracking west and is expected to reach the southern Gulf of Carpentaria, around Burketown and Normanton, by tomorrow morning. Olga and ex-cyclone Neville caused heavy downpours from the Gulf to as far south as Mackay, in central Queensland. 200mm had fallen on the Clarke Ranges, west of Mackay, in the 24 hours to 9am. And 107mm fell at Topaz, south of Cairns. The weather system has only caused minor flooding so far.
AUSTRALIA – Northern communities along the Queensland/Northern Territory border are on cyclone watch, with forecasters saying ex-cyclone Olga could re-form this week. The tropical low is hovering over land near the border, about 70km southwest of Burketown. A cyclone watch is in place for coastal communities along the Gulf of Carpentaria. The low pressure system is heading west at 11km/h and the Bureau of Meteorology expects it to cross into the Northern Territory later today. The low is carrying winds up to 60km/h and gales are not expected within the next 24 hours. "If the system moves into water over the southern Gulf of Carpentaria it may re-intensify into a cyclone on Wednesday or Thursday. The models are predicting an intensification." The low is bringing heavy rain to parts of north Queensland. Townsville has recorded the heaviest falls and coastal areas between Cairns and Innisfail have also seen big falls. Olga crossed the coast north of Port Douglas on Sunday afternoon as a category one cyclone. It was downgraded to a tropical low on Sunday.
Cyclone tango – North Queenslanders last night remained on alert after two powerful monsoonal lows threatened a tag-team assault on more than 700km of the coastline. As well as ex-cyclone Olga, the north was also affected by ex-cyclone Neville, which were rotating or orbiting around each other in a RARE PHENOMENON called the Fujiwhara effect. "It's VERY RARE and you see it once or twice a year somewhere in the world." Weather forecasters said they could not remember ever seeing the cyclone tango in the Coral Sea. The UNUSUAL weather event occurred Sunday when Olga was still a category 2 storm and the former cyclone Neville hovered to the south. Ex-Neville and ex-Olga have now become part of a "vigorous monsoon trough", which will bring heavy falls across north Queensland. "There could be pockets of 200mm- 300mm and scattered falls of 50-100mm . . . with rain and isolated thunderstorms forecast for most of the week." "Our computer models have ex-Olga on the charts in seven to 10 days' time, still hovering around the Northern Territory or the Gulf of Carpentaria." Olga's target region from north of Cooktown to Cairns was spared the worst when winds that hit speeds of more than 150km/h at sea failed to reach the coastline.
EX-tropical cyclone Olga is expected to revive as it moves over warm waters in the Gulf of Carpentaria. The low system was located about 100km east of Borroloola in the Northern Territory at 1pm (AEST) but was expected to re-intensify. A forecast map on the bureau's website has Olga intensifying to a category three cyclone as it moves back across the Queensland border on Friday. A cyclone warning has been issued for communities between Cape Shield, in the Northern Territory and Burketown, in Queensland. The Bureau of Meteorology has warned the re-developed cyclone could unleash winds of up to 110km/h on communities within the affected area tonight or tomorrow morning. Heavy rain from the system is expected to result in significant stream rises and flooding of low-lying areas in the Northern Territory. Abnormally high tides are expected between the NT border and Burketown tonight. Olga developed in the Coral sea on Saturday before crossing the Queensland coast north of Cooktown as a category one cyclone on Sunday and weakening to a low as it moved west.
SAMOA's tsunami-battered region of Aleipata is being hit by the newly-formed Cyclone Nisha. The cyclone formed this morning. Thousands of people are still living in the open after the September 29 tsunami which killed 200 people in American Samoa, Samoa and Tonga. Nisha is bringing heavy rain to the area but there are currently no reports of injuries or death. It is centred south east of Aleipata and is moving eastward toward American Samoa. The area was experiencing wind and heavy rain. The Hawaii based Joint Typhoon Warning Center says the cyclone is expected to track across the Cook Islands over the next couple of days and head toward French Polynesia. They say it will intensify as it moves east.
Hundreds of ghost crabs have been found dead along the mudflats lining the Esplanade Lagoon in the wake of ex-cyclone Olga. The dead crustaceans have created a fishy smell and an environmental eyesore for tourists and locals in recent days. Recent torrential rain was the most likely reason for the mass deaths. Too much fresh water lowered the iron levels of the crabs and led to over-hydration – the opposite of dehydration. The crabs’ plight is expected to continue with predictions ex-cyclone Olga will develop in strength and drift further south east across the Gulf this week, causing more rain. More than 80mm of rain fell over Cairns on Wednesday and weather experts predicted a similar deluge for Thursday.
Nisha was the tenth tropical depression to form in the Southern Pacific Ocean. The storm has strengthened quickly and there are many areas within the storm that have rainfall rates of over 2 inches per hour. The highest cloud heights on the thunderstorms on the northeast quadrant of the storm are as high as 6 miles (10 kilometers). At 10 a.m. ET January 28, Tropical Storm Nisha had maximum sustained winds near 57 mph (50 knots) with higher gusts. It was located about 450 nautical miles southeast of Pago Pago, American Samoa, near 19.4 South and 164.5 West. It was moving east-southeast near 18 mph (16 knots). Nisha is expected to move east-southeast and remain over warm waters that will help the storm maintain intensity or strengthen. The sea surface temperatures in the vicinity are warmer than 28 degrees Celsius (82 Fahrenheit). Nisha has spawned some warnings in the region. A tropical cyclone warning is up for Palmerston Island and the rest of the South Cook Islands. Forecasters note that French Polynesia could be affected by the weekend.
HEAVY RAINS / FLOODING / LANDSLIDES / UNUSUAL & OUT-OF-SEASON WEATHER –
INDONESIA – Eight people were killed and 13 are missing after flash floods smashed through villages in Indonesia's Southeast Sulawesi province. The powerful waters were unleashed after the Rante Limbong river overflowed and rushed through five villages in Kolaka Utara district late Thursday. At least 16 houses were swept away. Rescuers were struggling to get to the villages. The floods displaced 2,000 people who are now sheltering in local administration office buildings.
ARIZONA – The series of storm systems that passed through the Valley last week, which ended with a grand finale Thursday night, was one for the record books. “That was ONE OF THE LARGEST STORM SYSTEMS TO EVER HIT THE STATE.” The system, lasting five days, that blew in from the west wasn’t just noteworthy for the huge amounts of rain it dumped, which included 2.37 inches at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport alone, more than a quarter of the Valley’s ANNUAL average rainfall. The granddaddy of them all, which hit Thursday evening, produced waves of power outages, prompted rare tornado warnings, runoff that breached banks and flooded streets and carried winds in excess of 70 mph, some of which toppled structures. In Maricopa County, areas received between 7 and 10 inches over the week. The Valley could get hit by more rain by Wednesday and another storm system next weekend, but it won’t be close to the magnitude of the last one.
MINNESOTA – The same storm that battered California with drenching rains, high winds, RARE January tornadoes, thunder, lightning and hail – sparking a series of mudslides and precautionary evacuations in the suburbs of L.A. churned northward across the Plains Saturday, yanking UNUSUALLY WARM air UNUSUALLY FAR north, sparking a cold rain instead of moderate/heavy snow. It's a little hard to comprehend the notion of LIQUID precipitation falling during one of the coldest 10 days of the entire year (at least on paper). Had temperatures been only 5 degrees colder, we'd be looking at over a foot for much of the area. "I've said it before: this almost looks more like a March slop-storm, not something you'd expect to experience during the dead of winter. Odd."
CALIFORNIA – The storm system affecting the region Sunday has been bringing strong and UNUSUAL weather since it moved on shore in California last week. Rain amounts last week in and around the Los Angeles area ranged from 4 to 8 inches – by far the heaviest rainfall of the winter. There were blizzard conditions and up to 4 feet of snow in the mountains northeast of Los Angeles. On Thursday, Los Angeles BROKE THE STATION RECORD FOR LOW BAROMETRIC PRESSURE at 29.07 inches, or 980 millibars. Further south, rainfall on San Diego varied from 2 to 4 inches. As the storm moved into Arizona, Phoenix received almost 2 inches of rain in three days. Blizzard conditions were reported in the mountains north of Phoenix and also in the mountains east of Tucson.
"Frankenstorm" – Weather experts say West Coast storms could get more frequent and severe with climate change. Last fall, a team of federal, state and academic experts was formed to tackle what would happen if a series of powerful storms lashed at the state for 23 days. The scenario is expected to be completed this summer and will be used in a statewide disaster drill next year. The hypothetical but plausible storm would be similar to the 1861-1862 extreme floods. The Great Flood of 1861-1862 was believed to be the most powerful and longest series of storms in state history, lasting a month and causing severe flooding. The Sacramento and San Joaquin valleys were water-logged and spontaneous lakes popped up in the Mojave Desert and Los Angeles basin. Nearly a third of the young state's taxable land was destroyed.
The "Frankenstorm" scenario "is much larger than anything in living memory." In the scenario, the storm system forms in the Pacific and slams into the West Coast with hurricane-force winds, hitting Southern California the hardest. After more than a week of ferocious weather, the system stalls for a few days. Another storm brews offshore and this time pummels Northern California. Such a monster storm could unleash as much as 8 feet of rain over three weeks in some areas. It makes the latest Pacific storm system look like a drop in the bucket.
PERU – Authorities in Peru have ordered the airlift of nearly 2,000 tourists stranded by heavy rains in the country's top attraction, Machu Picchu. Days of heavy rains triggered up to 40 landslides, many which have blocked roads and one of which blocked the railway connecting the Inca ruins with the city of Cuzco. Two people are reported to have died when a mudslide destroyed their home. Hundreds of hectares of crops, mostly maize, were destroyed when rivers broke their banks. The authorities in Cuzco have declared a state of emergency in the south-eastern region of the country where they say up to 3,000 people have had their homes destroyed by floods and landslides. The historic centre of Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire has also been damaged. A colonial-era house has collapsed and last week part of the Sacsayhuaman, the Inca fortress which flanks the city, was damaged by the intense rains.
LEBANNON – heavy rains and storms in Lebanon in the past two days that have caused heavy flooding and damages in some part of the country. An Ethiopian airliner carrying 92 passengers and crew crashed in stormy weather following takeoff in Lebanon early Monday, plunging into the Mediterranean sea. It comes just one month after a Panamian-flagged ship transporting livestock capsized in similar weather and sank off the coast of northern Lebanon with around 80 sailors on board. The majority of the sailors were rescued but 26 were unaccounted for and presumed dead.
CANADA – The WETTEST JANUARY DAY ON RECORD flooded streets and basements, increased water levels on lakes and streams and closed the World's Largest Skating Rink. 43.6 mm of rain fell at the Ottawa International Airport on Monday, shattering the record for the most amount of rain in a one-day period in January. The previous single day rainfall mark was set on January 15, 1995, when 33.6 mm of rain fell. The record rainfall is expected to increase water levels along rivers and streams, but no overbank flooding is anticipated. Colder temperatures overnight and through the rest of the week will cause water levels to decline.
TEXAS – Dozens of homes were evacuated in San Antonio after the ground below began shifting, creating crevices up to 15 feet deep and nearly splitting a nearby retaining wall in half. About 80 homes were first evacuated on Sunday after residents in a northwest side subdivision reported that the ground was caving behind several houses. No one was injured. The large crack in the retaining wall sent soil tumbling out below. Fences were tossed askew and crumpled like accordions, and aerial photos showed land had given way near the foundations of several homes. Engineers at the scene Monday were trying to determine why the ground was shifting and how much damage it could cause. At least seven streets had to be closed since the ground started shifting on Friday at the rate of about 4 inches an hour. The homes were in a new subdivision built by Pulte Homes. The homebuilder was providing lodging and meals for the evacuated residents.
BOLIVIA's President has declared a state of emergency in areas of the country, as heavy rains and floods affect some 24,000 families. The worst-hit areas are La Paz, Santa Cruz, Cochabamba, Chuquisaca and Beni. The flooding is expected to get worse as more rain is forecast. Rivers have broken their banks and overflowed. There have been mudslides. Earlier this week a heavy mudslide washed away 72 houses on the outskirts of the capital La Paz. The rains, which have swept away crops, livestock and communication lines, are blamed on the El Nino weather phenomenon which results in severe weather conditions across the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Rain regularly increases in Bolivia in January and February. However, officials are saying that climate change is also to blame.
PERU – About 1,400 tourists have been airlifted from near the Inca ruins of Machu Picchu in Peru following floods that destroyed road and rail links. A break in the weather allowed the government to send in helicopters, but about 800 tourists are still stranded. The operation is expected to end by the weekend, although the misery will continue for the thousands of Peruvians who have lost their homes and farmland to the floods. Rain and mudslides there have severed road and rail links in the region. A number of hotels were reported to have increased prices considerably. Five people are reported to have died, including two residents killed when their home was destroyed, and a trekker crushed while sleeping in a tent.
HEAVY SNOW / EXTREME COLD –
CALIFORNIA – A state of emergency was declared in Siskiyou and four other California counties Thursday after they were slammed by winter storms. Siskiyou, the hardest hit county in the north state, still had 6,100 homes and businesses without power Thursday night, and Mount Shasta residents were digging out from up to 6 feet of wet snow that buckled power lines and toppled trees. Snowdrifts reached 10 feet in some places. More snow is expected to accumulate over the weekend. Also listed in the emergency order were Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Francisco counties. The storms have brought high winds, heavy rain and snow and have caused injuries, flooding and mudslides statewide. "These winter storms, by reason of their magnitude, are or are likely to be beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment and facilities of any single county, city and county, or city and require the combined forces of a mutual aid region or regions to combat." Nearly 2 feet of snow fell in some areas near Mount Shasta on Wednesday night. Monday and Tuesday saw RECORD-BREAKING PRECIPITATION at 2.5 inches and 2.95 inches of rain. Another storm hits today.
CHINA -Cold weather strands 4,000 travellers in northwest, paralyzes fishing in frigid eastern China. Freezing temperatures closed fishing harbours in eastern China and high winds stranded travellers in the northwest of the country as a cold front followed RECORD-BREAKING BLIZZARDS this week. Continuing harsh weather has hampered rescue efforts for some 1.6 million people affected this month by record-breaking storms in western China's Xinjiang Autonomous Region. Four storms in January have killed at least five people, injured more than 600 and damaged 100,000 homes in Xinjiang. About 4,000 travellers were stranded after strong winds shut down highways in Xinjiang's northwestern districts of Altay and Tacheng on Thursday. Temperatures dropped this week to minus 45 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 43 Celsius) in some areas of northern Xinjiang hit with the WORST SNOW IN 60 YEARS. Ice has halted fishing and shipping services, with losses totalling $146 million for the fishing industry along the coast of Hebei and Shandong provinces.
BULGARIA – A snowstorm is raging in eastern Bulgaria, with Suvorovo and Valchidoll municipalities being hardest hit. The current severe weather conditions have forced the closure of Hemus highway, and the port of Varna has been shut down. Hemus highway has been closed in both directions. Restrictions have been imposed on all third-class roads in the area. The port of Varna was closed due to high winds and the low temperatures. Varna airport remains open, working under winter conditions. The Bulgarian Red Cross has warned against unnecessary travel over the weekend because of the extremely cold conditions. Temperatures across the country are around minus 10 to minus 15 degrees, and the danger of freezing is high. In the mountains it is cloudy, and over the higher parts there is also fog.
TURKEY – Snowstorms, heavy rains, and extreme weather conditions affected large parts of Turkey on Saturday, causing traffic jams and flooding a number of houses. Heavy snowfall in the north has blocked road access to more than 550 villages, while temperatures have plummeted to -15 Centigrade. Municipality workers have been striving to keep the roads open despite the continuing snowfall, which is expected to last until next week. Reports said that the freezing weather has claimed the lives of two people. In addition, heavy rains have flooded at least 30 houses in the southwest of the country. Emergency teams dispatched to the affected areas have rescued hundreds of citizens trapped in their homes. The Bosporus, which connects the Black Sea to the Mediterranean, is temporarily closed for maritime traffic. Over 30 ships trying to pass through the Bosporus Strait anchored due to winds blowing up to 90 kilometers per hour. Meanwhile, in Istanbul, 253 homeless people were brought to shelters.
MONGOLIA – extreme winter weather has killed more than a million livestock in Mongolia. This is likely to harm the country's food supply and worsen poverty. 19 of Mongolia's 21 provinces have been hit by heavy winter snow and -40C temperatures. Mongolia suffered a severe drought during the summer months, which prevented the stockpiling of food for livestock. More than a third of Mongolians herd livestock for a living. "The poor did not have the resources to stockpile food or fuel for heating, and the supplies in the now inaccessible villages as a whole are stretched." UN agencies are trying to reach the worst-hit people, and are particularly concerned about pregnant women cut off from medical facilities by the heavy snow – three have reportedly died in childbirth so far. The agencies are also worried about pneumonia rates among children and pregnant women, and increasing malnutrition. The UN is coordinating all donor contributions to Mongolia, after the government asked for food, medicine, heating supplies, warm clothing and money to buy and deliver food for livestock.
U.S. – Monday's storm was a "pattern breaker." "It has created a huge rift in the jet stream, which in turn will let much colder air enter the central and eastern part of the country. Winter is taking back the reigns this week. The east will be much colder from midweek on." A winter storm is expected to take shape over the southern Plains on Thursday. Forecasters expect the storm to follow a southern track with the potential to produce a substantial amount of snow from the southern Plains to the mid-Atlantic region. The snow will spread east through Kentucky then into the Virginias on Thursday night and Friday. Snow will get into Maryland, southern Pennsylvania and New Jersey by Friday, and into southern New England on Saturday. "This storm threatens to be a real troublemaker from the southern Plains to the East Coast. A large swath of the country from Oklahoma to northern Virginia could get quite a sizable snowfall from this thing later this week." Looking ahead, AccuWeather.com is predicting February to be a cold, stormy month, much like December. February will rival the weather seen in previous Februaries known for their severity. "It may very well turn into a blend of February '07 and February '03, which were the most extreme Februaries we've had in the last 15 years…Much of the U.S. should prepare for another round of severe cold and snowy weather, similar to the recent 'December to Remember,' but focused farther east. I believe the physical drivers are all there for a major cold month, much like this December was." An active southern storm track will contribute to above-normal snowfall in many areas that experienced above-normal snowfall in December. Parts of Florida could even have another shot at snow.
CHINA – An avalanche in western China has killed 14 people, bringing the reported death toll from a fierce cold snap to at least 27. The avalanche occurred on Tuesday in Yili prefecture, an area along the border with Kazakhstan. The news comes after the nation's media earlier this week reported 13 people had died in Xinjiang from the WORST SNOWSTORMS IN SIX DECADES. Twelve of those had perished in avalanches. China has endured an UNUSUALLY HARSH WINTER, reaching its height since January 1 with heavy snow across vast parts of the country's north and west, but Xinjiang has suffered the hardest from a series of Siberian blizzards. Thousands have been left homeless after the heavy snows led houses to collapse while thousands of livestock have died from exposure or starvation after grazing fields were buried in snow.
FREAK WEATHER CONDITIONS and/or abnormal weather patterns have been reported in several parts of the world during recent months. One of the latest examples is a significant build-up of sea ice in some major northern Chinese ports, the volume EXCEEDING ANYTHING EXPERIENCED IN MORE THAN 30 YEARS. The problem is centred around Bohai on the northern Yellow Sea coast, affecting ports such as Bayuquan and Dalian. At Bayuquan, patches of ice 500-600mm thick have formed in some places, while lesser patches have been seen in the immediate vicinity of the port. Three icebreakers are working to avoid delays to ships, while the local Maritime Safety Authority is strictly supervising inbound and outbound vessel traffic. Other northern ports – such as Jingtang, Caofeidian and Xingang – are said to be not so seriously affected. On January 17, the Chinese National Sea Weather Forecast Station reported that floating ice around Liaodong Gulf extended as far as some 60 nautical miles from shore, at Bohai Gulf around 22 miles, Northern Yellow Sea around 14 miles, and Laizhou Gulf around 33 miles. However, with more cold weather fronts expected later, ice coverage around the Bohai coast could expand.
EUROPE – A bitter winter across central Europe is starting to bite. The inside car windows have frozen and some are using hair dryers to warm the engine. In Romania, the cold Siberian front has claimed the lives of 11 people in the last 24 hours, 22 in five days. The outlook is bleak, with temperatures at night expected to plummet to below minus 30. Schools have closed, those that are open are struggling to heat the classrooms improvising with electric radiators, the pupils studying with their coats on. And power in Poland is one of the biggest causalities in the big freeze that has gripped that country. In the south more than 10,000 households are without heating and lighting. These extremes are especially difficult for homeless people. 11 have reported to have died last night, bringing the total of deaths to 202 since the beginning of November, including a 13-year-old boy who died of hypothermia. The freezing conditions are starting to spread across Turkey. Heavy snow has already hit the east of the country, causing chaos in the city of Erzurum. The temperature has fallen to minus 10 while 40cm of snow have already fallen. 528 villages have been cut off, flights cancelled and the city centre has been without electricity. Much of central Europe is struggling to cope in the winter white out, which is forecast to last for another couple of days.
BULGARIA was battered by extreme weather conditions over the past 24 hours, with temperatures reportedly plummeting to a RECORD -32C [-32F] in the north east on Tuesday. Dobrich saw the mercury dip down to -26C while 17 other municipalities across Bulgaria reported that temperatures went below -23C. In some towns in the north of the country, Pleven, Rousse and Elhovo, temperatures dropped to their LOWEST SINCE 1933. The seaside town of Kaliakra reported -18.8C and negative temperatures prevailed along the entire coast, while Sofia fell to -15C.
ROMANIA – Extreme weather in eastern and central Europe continued to claim victims Wednesday, as the death toll in Romania rose to 44.
Harsh winter is caused by climate change? – New report shows this winter’s extreme weather is caused by climate change disrupting long-standing patterns. Previously warmer winters have produced more than usual precipitation in the atmosphere, resulting in heavier snowfalls, freezing temperatures, and unusual amounts of rain. "It's very hard for any of us to grasp how this larger warming trend is happening when we're still having wintry weather." But the extreme wintery downfall is in fact a direct result of global warming. Because of previously warmer winters, "the lakes are less likely to freeze over or are freezing later [and] surface water evaporation is recharging the atmosphere with moisture." Combine all that moisture with cold conditions, and you have the makings of a harsh winter climate.
Just 57 percent of people say global warming "is happening." This is compared to the 71 percent who believed in global warming in 2008. Experts feel the recession is partly to blame for this disbelief. It appears the American public feels that now is not the time to fight climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 2007 report warns that the public needs to grasp that it is important to reduce carbon dioxide quickly because it stays in the atmosphere for centuries.
EXTREME HEAT / WILDFIRES / DROUGHT / CLIMATE CHANGE-
AUSTRALIA – Heatwave breaks as temperatures plummet – Temperatures in Sydney dropped to 26 degrees in the space of an hour and a half, after reaching the low 40s on Saturday afternoon. The NSW heatwave has broken, with temperatures plummeting across the state. A cold front arrived in NSW in the late afternoon, giving a reprieve from the high temperatures of earlier in the day. Richmond had the highest recorded temperature in NSW, with a high of 43.3 degrees recorded at 4.38pm. The NSW Rural Fire Service reported lower than expected bushfire incidents in spite of extreme fire danger ratings in much of the state.
WASHINGTON – The Yakima Valley as well as much of the state have enjoyed warmer than normal weather throughout the month and it is causing problems up in the mountains. The average snowpack for several regions across the state is below average impacting business ski resorts and potentially limiting Washington's water supply, as 70% of Washington's water comes from snowpack runoff. Weather experts say El Nino is responsible for the UNUSUAL WEATHER across the west coast. Parts of Washington are ON TRACK FOR THE WARMEST JANUARY EVER while much of California gets heavy snow and rain. The Yakima area snowpack is at 79 percent, which is much lower than Walla Walla at 89 percent but both are well above the Spokane area, currently at 56 percent. The one area above average is the Olympic Peninsula at 123 percent. The warm weather is likely to stay throughout the winter so water managers will need to carefully monitor levels this year.
UN climate panel blunders again over Himalayan glaciers – The chairman of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has used bogus claims that Himalayan glaciers were melting to win grants worth hundreds of thousands of pounds. It means that EU taxpayers are funding research into a scientific claim about glaciers that any ice researcher should immediately recognise as bogus. The revelation comes just a week after The Sunday Times highlighted serious scientific flaws in the IPCC's 2007 benchmark report on the likely impacts of global warming. The IPCC had warned that climate change was likely to melt most of the Himalayan glaciers by 2035 – an idea considered ludicrous by most glaciologists. This threat, if it exists, will take centuries to have any serious effect. Last week a humbled IPCC retracted that claim and corrected its report. Since then, however, The Sunday Times has discovered that the same bogus claim has been cited in grant applications. Questions are also being asked about the chairman's links with GloriOil, a Texas-based oil technology company that specialises in recovering extra oil from declining oil fields . The chairman is listed as a founder and scientific advisor. Critics say it is odd for a man committed to decarbonising energy supplies to be linked to an oil company.
The United Nations climate science panel faces new controversy for wrongly linking global warming to an increase in the number and severity of natural disasters such as hurricanes and floods. The new controversy goes back to the IPCC's 2007 report in which a separate section warned that the world had "suffered rapidly rising costs due to extreme weather-related events since the 1970s". It suggested a part of this increase was due to global warming. It based the claims on an unpublished report that had not been subjected to routine scientific scrutiny – and ignored warnings from scientific advisers that the evidence supporting the link was too weak. The report's own authors later withdrew the claim because they felt the evidence was not strong enough. When the paper was eventually published, in 2008, it had a new caveat. It said: "We find insufficient evidence to claim a statistical relationship between global temperature increase and catastrophe losses." Despite this change the IPCC did not issue a clarification ahead of the Copenhagen climate summit last month.
COLUMBIA – health authorities are alarmed by a recent increase of malaria and dengue fever infections following an exceptionally hot and dry season. Three people died of the mosquito-borne diseases in one department. "We are spraying and using impregnanted mosquito nets in endemic areas where last year we had 1167 cases of malaria." The national government, through the Health Ministry, decided to free 14 billion pesos (US$7.1 million) to activate contingency plans to halt the spreading of malara and dengue fever.
UNUSUALLY high number of deadly spiders causes alarm in Australia – Australia is home to some of the most dangerous spiders in the world. One of those species, the funnel-web spider, is invading Sydney and its surroundings. This spider's bite can kill a human within two hours. Several people have been bitten by the spiders, but no one has died (recently) from a funnel-web spider bite. These bites can lead to vomiting, convulsions, and difficulty breathing and require fast action to administer the anti-venom. Residents are warned to watch for the spiders in moist, dark places where the spiders tend to "rear up and bare their fangs" when their webs are disturbed. The collection area has "received more than 40 males in recent weeks." This is alarming because the male spider is deadlier than the female. Experts claim UNUSUAL WEATHER PATTERNS led to the abundance of the funnel-webs, citing a longer-than-usual dry period followed by rainy, humid weather. The spiders responded to the warm, wet weather. Other specialists are blaming climate change for the longer breeding season and increased activity in the spiders. "[The numbers] are definitely up from the previous year, and I think it's not going to get any better."
Continuing global economic growth "is not possible" if nations are to tackle climate change, a report by an environmental think-tank has warned. The New Economics Foundation said "UNPRECEDENTED and probably impossible" carbon reductions would be needed to hold temperature rises below 2C (3.6F). Scientists say exceeding this limit could lead to dangerous global warming. "We urgently need to change our economy to live within its environmental budget." The "carbon intensity" of the global economy will need to fall by 95% by 2050 from 2002 levels. This would require an average annual reduction of 6.5%. There is no proven technological advance that would allow "business as usual" to continue. "Magic bullets – such as carbon capture and storage, nuclear or even geo-engineering – are potentially dangerous distractions from more human-scale solutions." There is growing support for community-scale projects, such as decentralised energy systems, but support from governments is needed.
The executive director of the Adam Smith Institute, a free-market think-thank, said the report exhibited "a complete lack of understanding of economics and, indeed, human development. It is precisely this economic growth which will lift the poor out of poverty and improve the environmental standards that really matter to people – like clean air and water – in the process, as it has done throughout human history. There's only one good thing I can say for the Nef's report, and that's that it is honest. Its authors admit that they want us to be poorer and to lead more restricted lives for the sake of their faddish beliefs."
AUSTRALIA – RECORD HOT DAYS CONTINUE TO OUTNUMBER RECORD COLD DAYS, according to the Bureau of Meteorology. Over the past decade high temperature records have been outnumbering low temperature records by a ratio of between two & three to one. While low temperature records are still occurring, record highs have become increasingly frequent since the mid-1990s. "In 2009 Australia experienced three major heatwaves – in January/February, August and November – all of which saw widespread record-breaking over large areas. The last time record lows occurred on that scale was in June 2007 in tropical Australia." The changes in the frequency of record temperatures in Australia are consistent with the warming trend in average temperatures, which have been increasing at 0.1-0.2C per decade over most of the continent in the period since 1957. Current projections by the CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology suggest the warming trend is expected to continue over the coming decades.
WASHINGTON – Warmer-than-usual weather worries local farmers. It's only January, but some raspberries are already budding. That's not supposed to happen for months. It's also RARE to have an average high of 45 degrees in the middle of January in Bellingham. It's usually 10 degrees cooler. And that's not good news for farmers. Seeing green in January could mean less green for farmers when it's time to sell their crop. "What will happen is that they will lose productive capacity of their plants…In February and March, we've had some really cold temperatures and if that happens, nobody knows, we will get some damage." Washington supplies 85 percent of the nation's processed raspberries. If there's significant damage to the crop, some companies may have to substitute with cherries to make up for the lost berries.
CANADA – Climate change blamed for Olympic snow shortage. The winter snow season has been slowly shrinking in past 50 years. Olympic organizers are working around the clock to ensure there's enough snow on Cypress Mountain, home to freestyle ski and snowboard events for the Games. RECORD WARM TEMPERATURES and heavy rains this winter have forced organizers to use bales of hay and to truck in snow to create the courses for the events. Research gathered over a 50-year period showed that the snow season in winters in B.C. are getting shorter by between four and five weeks, with warmer temperatures overall.
ARGENTINA – People living in the city and the Buenos Aires province will go through yet another day of suffocating heat with summer temperatures ranging from 25 to 34 degrees centigrade, and relief will only arrive next Sunday with some rain.
STRATOSPHERIC CLOUDS – On the evening of Jan. 26th, sky watchers in parts of England and the Netherlands witnessed UNUSUALLY colorful sunsets and prolonged twilights. An atmospheric optics expert believes that "we are experiencing an episode of Polar Stratospheric Clouds (Type 1) as a result of UNUSUALLY LOW STRATOSPHERIC TEMPERATURES." High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for these clouds at sunrise and sunset in the days ahead.
This Friday night, if you think the Moon looks UNUSUALLY big, you'll be right. Look around sunset when the Moon is near the eastern horizon. It's the biggest full Moon of 2010 – some 14% wider and 30% brighter than lesser full Moons of the year. The moon is in it's closest approach. The Moon's orbit around Earth is not a circle; it is an ellipse, with one side 50,000 km closer to Earth than the other.
In a coincidence of celestial proportions, the Moon and Mars are having close encounters with Earth at the same time. Moreover, the two will spend Friday night gliding across the sky side-by-side. Mars looks bigger through a telescope now than at any time between 2008 and 2014.
VIRGINIA – 1/25/10 – A small meteorite fell from the sky and crashed through the roof of a doctor's office in Virginia, but luckily no one was hit. The half-pound meteorite struck the Lorton office of a general practice physician on Monday evening while he was on the second floor of his two-story building. "It went through the roof. It went through one wall partition and then passed through a particle board ceiling into the floor of an examination room." The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural Histor confirmed that the object was indeed a meteorite from outer space. "It's not really big. It's about the size of your fist." It may be small, but the space rock packed a big wallop when it struck the doctor's office at up to 200 mph. It broke apart when it hit the concrete floor of the examination room. Witnesses described the crash as sounding like a bookshelf falling over. "Apparently, it was quite loud." No one in the office was hurt when the space rock fell. The meteorite split into several pieces when it hit the ground floor. But many people witnessed the brilliant fireball created by the space rock as it streaked through the Earth's atmosphere. The meteorite is only the fourth reported to fall in Virginia. The first documented crash in the state was reported in 1878, with the most recent occurring in 1924.
ODD ANIMAL BEHAVIOR-
Experts have told of their surprise after witnessing a RARE "divorce" between a pair of swans at a Gloucestershire wildfowl sanctuary. The Bewick's swans have returned from Arctic Russia to winter at the centre – but both have brought new partners. It is only the second time in more than 40 years that a "separation" has been recorded at the centre. Staff have described the new couplings as "bizarre". It is not unheard of for the birds, which usually mate for life, to find a new mate but it tends to be because one of the pair has died. During the past four decades 4,000 pairs of Bewick's swans have been studied at Slimbridge, with only one previous couple moving on to find new partners. Swans tend to have "real loyalties to one another" and long partnerships. "As long as they are both still alive, they will try to stay together." But both swans and their new partners are now over-wintering in close proximity on the lake at Slimbridge. The old pair had not acknowledged each other with any signs of recognition or greeting – even though they are occupying the same part of the small lake. As for why they may have split – "Failure to breed could be a possible reason, as they had been together for a couple of years but had never brought back a cygnet, but it is difficult to say for sure."
HEALTH THREATS –
Daniele Inc., of Pascoag, R.I., recalled ready-to-eat pepper-coated salami, sausage and other cured meats Saturday, saying they may be contaminated with salmonella. The outbreak began in July. So far it has sickened 184 people in 38 states, leading to at least 35 hospitalizations but no deaths. Pepper, one of the most commonly used spices, could be the cause of the 1.24 million-pound salami recall, some food safety experts say. The one thing all the recalled products have in common is that they were rolled in pepper, or packaged with a product that was. Uncooked pepper has been known to carry salmonella. "Frankly, if you're using pepper and you're not doing some sort of sterilization process on it, you're rolling the dice." Last April, at least 42 people were sickened with salmonella linked to pepper.
A seven-country survey found wide differences in physicians' views about the H1N1 pandemic. Only 20% of Chinese doctors agreed that pregnant women should be vaccinated, versus 90% of US doctors. Overall, 51% of the doctors said they had been vaccinated, with a range from 21% in Spain to 76% in Taiwan. Sixty-two percent believed that the vaccine is effective, while 27% were uncertain.
High rate of H1N1 complications in pregnancy – Australian researchers report that, of 43 pregnant women admitted to hospitals with H1N1 flu infection between May and July 2009 in the state of Victoria, 8 were admitted to intensive care and 1 died. In addition, 2 of the pregnancies were miscarried and 1 child died after birth. Half of the women had no underlying conditions, and three-fourths were given antiviral treatment; one-third of those receiving antivirals began them within 2 days of the start of symptoms.
Novartis profits rise as it issues warning to nations – Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis announced an 8% increase in profits from 2008 to 2009, driven largely by sales of H1N1 vaccine. But during the announcement, the outgoing CEO WARNED THAT THE COMPANY COULD RETALIATE AGAINST GOVERNMENTS now trying to cancel flu-shot contracts. Countries reneging on payment for vaccines that have already been delivered will not receive a priority response during the next pandemic, he said.
The United States has made little progress in the past year in improving its ability to blunt the impact of a biological weapons attack, says a new report from the commission Congress established to assess the nation's efforts to prevent and respond to terrorism. The Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism gives the government an "F" for a lack of effort to improve the nation's capability to respond to biological attacks quickly enough to prevent mass casualties. The government gets better grades for some other activities related to bioterrorism preparedness, but the report says the weakness in rapid response capability is "the most significant failure".
In its earlier report, the commission predicted that weapons of mass destruction would be used in a terrorist attack somewhere in the world by the end of 2013 and that the weapon used is more likely to be biological than nuclear. The group says the Obama administration has shown much greater urgency in dealing with the threat of nuclear terrorism than in coping with biological threats. The cost of developing medical countermeasures needed to meet the threats identified by the Department of Homeland Security is estimated at $3.4 billion a year for the next 5 years, but the appropriation for fiscal year 2010 is less than a tenth of that. Each of the last three presidential administrations has been slow to recognize and respond to the bioterrorism threat. But it says the danger "has grown to the point that we no longer have the luxury of a slow learning curve." The panel asserts that the delayed response to the H1N1 influenza pandemic illustrates the preparedness gap. "Currently our government cannot determine how many people have contracted a disease even during a pandemic such as H1N1, which was foreseen for many months."
In a study by French researchers in Emerging Infectious Diseases of 16 H1N1-flu-confirmed patients treated with the antiviral drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu), only 9 (56%) tested negative for H1N1 flu within 3 day of treatment, while 3 (19%) still tested positive more than 5 days after treatment. The authors conclude, "These data raise questions about potential virus transmission during antiviral treatment and the possible resistance of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 to oseltamivir."
Egypt's health ministry has confirmed four new H5N1 AVIAN influenza cases, which aren't related although all had contact with sick and dead poultry and are recovering in stable condition. Research suggests that children have been disproportionately affected as well as women, a group that is more likely to die from H5N1 infection. The new report also shows a connection between early treatment and recovery. The four H5N1 cases bring Egypt's total to 94, of which 27 have been fatal. They are the first cases to be reported in 2010. Last year Egypt reported 39 avian flu cases, up dramatically from 8 in 2008. However, the number of deaths for both years was the same, at 4. The new cases raise the world's H5N1 count to 471 cases, including 282 deaths. New reports of human infections appear to mirror a recent spike in poultry infections in Egypt. In 2009 the disease seemed to take a growing toll on children. At the same time, Egypt's H5N1 patients seemed increasingly more likely to survive their infections. Females were more likely to be infected than males, though infected children were more likely to be male. Women aged 20 to 39 were more likely to die of their infections, and researchers speculated that they may have had more exposure to the virus, because Egyptian women do the bulk of culling, slaughtering, and defeathering. Egyptians frequently keep poultry on rooftops and near living quarters, and the government doesn't compensate for culled birds, making it less likely that bird owners will report outbreaks Farmers believe they are at little risk from poultry-handling activities.
Serbia's health ministry said it is cancelling further orders of pandemic vaccine from Novartis. The country had originally ordered 3 million doses and has administered 160,000 doses of the 857,500 it had already received. Serbia said it needs 300,000 doses in reserve in case of another flu wave.
Meanwhile, Japan signaled that it may cancel some of the 99 million doses of vaccine it ordered from Glaxo and Novartis.
Eel populations in the River Thames in England have fallen by 98% in just five years. The numbers of eels fell from 1,500 in 2005 to just 50 last year. Conservationists are concerned the species is not returning to the Thames, or is facing problems in the river and its tributaries. European eels and flounders were the first species to recolonise the Thames Estuary after it was considered "biologically dead" in the 1960s. "Eels are mysterious creatures at the best of times but we are very concerned about the rapid disappearance in the Thames. It is difficult to say what is going on – it could be due to a number of potential factors including changes in oceanic currents due to climate change, man-made structures such as dams and the presence of certain diseases and parasites. Time appears to be running out for eels in the River Thames and this could have a domino effect on other species in the Thames." There is a need to find out why the declines are happening, in order to save the eels and help other species in the estuary's food web which would be affected by their disappearance, such as birds which feed on it.
Signs in False Shepherds & False Religion
For among them are those who worm their way into households and capture idle women burdened down with sins, led along by a variety of passions, always learning and never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so these also resist the truth, men who are corrupt in mind, worthless in regard to the faith. But they will not make further progress, for their lack of understanding will be clear to all, as theirs was also. 2 Timothy 3:6-9
Crystal Cathedral is laying off 50 workers, selling surplus property
By Margot Roosevelt
January 30, 2010
The Crystal Cathedral, the Garden Grove megachurch, is laying off 50 workers, selling surplus property and may pull its "Hour of Power" television show in up to eight markets because of a precipitous drop in contributions. The 7,000-member church also has canceled its "Glory of Easter" pageant, a popular reenactment of the life and death of Jesus Christ, which sold tens of thousands of tickets each year. "This cuts to the heart of our ministry," said spokesman John Charles. "It is sad news."
Religion, politicians fiery combo in Lancaster
By Kevin Modesti, Staff Writer
LA Daily News
Lancaster officials became embroiled in religious controversy this week after the mayor spoke of trying to make the Antelope Valley city a "Christian community" and a councilwoman wrote on Facebook that beheadings are what Muslims "are all about."
Presbyterians to Consider Clearer Restrictions Against Women Leaders
By Audrey Barrick|Christian Post Reporter
Jan. 28 2010
Women in the Presbyterian Church in America may face stricter rules regarding the offices they serve in. The Central Carolina Presbytery has submitted an overture for consideration by the denomination's highest governing body, asking that women be stripped of the title "deaconess." Currently, women in the PCA are excluded from serving as ministers, elders and deacons but the Book of Church Order allows for them to "assist the deacons in caring for the sick, the widows, the orphans, the prisoners, and others who may be in any distress or need." To avoid confusion and to prevent misuse of the provision, Andrew Webb, pastor of Providence Presbyterian Church in Fayetteville, N.C., authored the overture, claiming that several churches in the PCA currently elect and commission women to the office of deacon and call them by the title deacon or deaconess.
23 Birmingham schools ditch Christian school assemblies
Jan 30 2010
EXCLUSIVE by Gregg Evans
A COUNCILLOR has blasted Birmingham schools for ditching traditional Christian assemblies in favour of Islamic or multi-faith worship. Twenty-three city schools no longer provide morning prayers, which are endorsed by law. Instead they have applied for an exemption from the council.
Wedding bells for gay bishop Pat Buckley
Saturday, 30 January 2010
Outspoken bishop Pat Buckley is set to have a civil partnership in Larne — where he blesses gay and lesbian unions in his private independent chapel. The maverick cleric (57) will tie the knot on February 8. While the intention was posted at Larne Borough Council offices, it is thought that a follow-up service will take place at the chapel in The Oratory — his residence which was owned by the Diocese of Down and Connor and which he refused to vacate when he was suspended as a priest.
Faith under Fire
“Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and falsely say every kind of evil against you because of me. Be glad and rejoice, because your reward is great in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” Matthew 5:11-12
“You will be hated by everyone because of my name. But the one who endured to the end will be delivered.” Matthew 10:22
Christian in Egypt: ‘They Try to Kill Us’
January 26, 2010 – 11:41 AM | by: Dana Lewis
Egyptian Maher El-Gowhary and his 15 year old daughter Dina never pray twice at the same church, never stay longer than a month in any one apartment. They are constantly under threat, always on the run because they converted to Christianity in a largely Muslim country. Maher and Dina nervously agreed to meet us at a Church in Cairo. The priest at the Church said he feared problems from the Egyptian authorities and while he agreed to have us watch his Sunday mass, the Priest declined to speak to us about what is happening in Egypt and to the El-Gowhary's.
Islamic Militants in Somalia Murder Christian Leader
NAIROBI, Kenya, January 26 (CDN) — Islamic extremists shot the leader of an underground church to death outside the capital city of Somalia this month and have threatened to kill his wife, his tearful widow told Compass. Having learned that he had left Islam to become a Christian, Somali militants from the Islamic extremist al Shabaab murdered 41-year-old Mohammed Ahmed Ali at about noon on Jan. 1, Amina Ibrahim Hassan said. He was killed sometime after leaving his home in Hodan, on the outskirts of Mogadishu, she said. She and other family members were not immediately aware that he had been killed.
Two Partially Constructed Church Buildings Burned in Indonesia
by Mathias Hariyadi
Jakarta (AsiaNews) – A crowd of at least 1000 people burned down two Protestant churches last night in Sibuhuan (district of Padang Lawas, North Sumatra). The blaze was the culmination of tension between the faithful and the local Islamic community, tired of seeing " too many faithful and too many prayers " in a place not registered as a church. The district chief of Padang Lawas, Basrah Lubis, said that "the attackers arrived in a flash. Their number was enormous, more or less a thousand. They were angry because the administration of the church had not responded to their demands: to change the use of buildings from 'places of prayer' to 'neutral buildings'. "
Violent Death of Girl in Pakistan Spurs Push for Justice
LAHORE, Pakistan, January 28 (CDN) — A daring protest and a high-profile funeral here on Monday (Jan. 25) for a 12-year-old Christian girl who died from torture and malnourishment has cast a rare spotlight on abuse of the Christian poor in Pakistan. In an uncommon challenge in the predominantly Muslim nation, the Christian parents of Shazia Bashir Masih protested police unresponsiveness to the alleged violence against their daughter by Muslim attorney Chaudhary Muhammad Naeem and his family and his attempt to buy their silence after her death. The house servant died on Friday (Jan. 22) after working eight months in Naeem’s house.
India Militants Attack Christian Birthday Party, Pastor
Saturday, January 30, 2010
By Santosh Digal, BosNewsLife Asia Correspondent
NEW DELHI, INDIA (BosNewsLife)– Hindu militants in south-eastern India halted a Christian birthday celebration and prayer meeting and attacked an evangelical pastor involved in the festivities saying he was trying to forcibly convert non-Christians to Christianity, one of India's national Christian organizations said Saturday, January 30. The All India Christian Council (AICC), an interdenominational national Christian body, said members of the radical Hindu group Hindu Vahini interrupted the celebrations late Friday, January 29, in the village of Jeedimetla in Andhra Pradesh state.