By Kevin Swanson
17 missionaries kidnapped in Haiti
Seventeen missionaries have been kidnapped by a gang of thugs in Haiti. Here’s what we know so far.
Sixteen of the group were American citizens, and one Canadian.
The group responsible for the kidnappings is the “400 Mawozo” gang which is known for extortion, carjackings, and kidnappings. It is dominant in the area just east of the nation’s capital.
HAITIAN: “Every day you live in Haiti you are lucky. Every single day you will live in Haiti, and you see another day, you are lucky.”
The missions team was on their way home from building an orphanage, sponsored by Christian Aid Ministries out of Ohio.
The ministry website indicated that the work is largely supported by Mennonites and Amish. NPR, The New York Times, ABC, NBC, and CNN are covering the story.
NBC reports that the FBI is in country now, investigating, and working with the State Department to obtain the release of the missionaries. The Haitian nation is facing serious unrest since the assassination of the president on July 7th.
A United Nations report identifies 300 kidnappings in the first eight months of the year. That’s 100 more than all of last year. But research out of Haiti points to 600 kidnappings through September including a three-fold increase in just three months.
One Haitian immigrant to America described the country’s unrest this way.
IMMIGRANT: “It is like living in a war zone. You don’t know when you’re going to get shot at. You don’t know when you’re going to get kidnapped.”
Ugandan Muslims kill Christian evangelist
Two Muslim men in eastern Uganda have been charged with the September 12th murder of Christian evangelist Barnabas Musana, reports Morning Star News. He had an active evangelism program going in two localities through which 15 Muslims had recently confessed to following Jesus.
Uganda’s constitution provides for religious freedom, including the right to propagate one’s faith, to convert from one religion to another.
Muslims make up no more than 12 percent of Uganda’s population, with high concentrations in eastern areas of the country.
Colin Powell, age 84, died of COVID
Hebrews 9:27 says, “It is appointed once for man to die, and after that the judgment.”
Former Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell died of COVID yesterday. He was suffering from multiple myeloma, a cancer of plasma cells that suppresses the body’s immune response, as well as Parkinson’s.
He was 84 years old.
As a presidential candidate in the 1996 race, Colin Powell was in favor of the legalization of abortion. Then, in 2008, Powell announced his support for Barack Obama and, in 2020, for Joe Biden.
POWELL: “I support Joe Biden for the presidency of the United States. Our country needs a Commander-in-Chief who takes care of our troops in the same way he would his own family. For Joe Biden, that doesn’t need teaching. Joe Biden will be a president we will all be proud to salute. With Joe Biden in the White House, you will never doubt that he will stand with our friends and stand up to our adversaries. Never the other way around.”
Oregon and Washington fire employees over COVID shot refusal
Monday was the COVID shot deadline in Oregon state and Washington state for public employees, hospital workers, and prison workers.
As just one small example of the fall of our Western civilization, Southern Oregon’s Rogue Regional Hospital will lay off 454 employees, including 180 nurses, at last count.
Reformed Church announced path for dividing
Following the pattern of the Methodists, now the Reformed Church in America is striking a path for dividing.
The “Vision 2020” committee outlined the points of disagreement including “ecumenical partnerships, social justice/political involvement, communism, church planting models, women in ministry, and human sexuality.”
Church attendance dropping; Mega church attendance up
The Faith Communities Survey provided another picture of the decline in church attendance in America.
The survey was conducted just before COVID-19 in 2020, and compared a similar survey from 2015. All told, all segments of American Christianity are shrinking. Mainline Protestants lost 12.5% in attendance, Catholic and Orthodox churches declined by 9%, and Evangelicals shrank by 5.4%.
Meanwhile, according to Lifeway Research, the average megachurch has grown by 34% over the last five years (using pre-COVID attendance numbers). However, the same survey found the attendees are not very committed to church. Whereas in 2000, 91% of the participants were regular attendees, that’s dropped off to 68% in 2020.
Also, the latest data from Gallup indicates weekly in-person church attendance in the U.S. has dropped off to 20% of the population, down from 34% prior to COVID. That’s another 41% decline in just one year.
Here’s an encouragement for believers from Romans 11:2-5. “God has not cast away His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel, saying, ‘Lord, they have killed Your prophets and torn down Your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life?’ But what does the divine response say to him? ‘I have reserved for Myself 7,000 men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.’ Even so then, at this present time there is a remnant according to the election of grace.”
Bitcoin, gold and stock market cap are up
The mad rush into cryptocurrency has produced a $2.6 trillion market cap, up from $200 billion in early 2020. That’s a 13-fold increase.
No doubt, the rise in bitcoin value is connected to today’s rollout of ProShares’ launch of the first bitcoin-linked Exchange Traded Fund in the United States.
Meanwhile, the Stock Market Cap has increased from $35 trillion to $50 trillion over the same timeframe. And gold has increased from $1,530 per ounce to $1,764 per ounce over the same time period.
Proverbs 23:4 instructs us not to “work to be rich. Will you set your eyes on that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; They fly away like an eagle toward heaven.”
And that’s The Worldview in 5 Minutes on this Tuesday, October 19th, in the year of our Lord 2021. Subscribe by iTunes or email to our unique Christian newscast at www.TheWorldview.com. Or get the Generations app through Google Play or The App Store. I’m Adam McManus (Adam@TheWorldview.com). Seize the day for Jesus Christ.