AP

Indonesia protests put minority Chinese in fear

JAKARTA, Indonesia — The capital of Muslim-majority Indonesia is on edge ahead of what is expected to be a second massive protest by conservative Muslims against its Christian governor and no group more so than its Chinese minority.

AP

More mosques get hate letters

LOS ANGELES — Several more mosques nationwide have reported receiving a hate-filled letter from California that warns Muslims to leave the country or face genocide.

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To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Giving presents for Christmas a fine idea

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: What is your feeling about gift giving at Christmas time? Have you found your feelings toward gift giving at Christmas have changed over the years?

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Sunday at 6 p.m. — “A Christmas Concert” at First United Methodist Church, 201 S. Locust St. Church choirs and ensembles will perform in the Monroe Building.

AP

Pope allows priests to absolve ‘grave sin’ of abortion

VATICAN CITY — Saying nothing is beyond the reach of God’s mercy, Pope Francis told Catholics worldwide he is allowing all priests to absolve the faithful of abortion — women and health workers alike — even while stressing that it is a grave sin in the eyes of the church to “end an innocent life.”

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Psalm opens Pandora’s box of questions

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: Can you help me with the theological underpinnings of this? Do religious folks who object to abortion believe that unborn children are without sin? I thought Christians believed that all humans are conceived and born into sin. If not, why baptize infants?

Changes to no-mask law dropped after Muslim backlash

SAVANNAH, Ga. — Advocates accused a Georgia lawmaker of targeting Muslim women with proposed changes to a 1951 state law passed to unmasked the Ku Klux Klan, creating a backlash that prompted the Republican legislator to quickly discard the idea.

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The Rev. Christy Thomas: God extends grace to those who remarry

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: I am a born-again Christian. I love the Lord with all of my heart and mind and soul and strength. I am divorced. Can I ever, without losing my salvation, marry again?

DRC

Breaking bread

Steve Green, Hobby Lobby president, listens as he is introduced at a prayer breakfast Thursday. Members of the Denton business community held the event at the Gateway Center at the University of North Texas.

AP

City may appeal ruling on Ten Commandments monument

A federal appeals court has ruled that Bloomfield’s Ten Commandments monument violates the U.S. Constitution, but a lawyer for the northwestern New Mexico city says it may appeal the ruling.

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The Rev. Christy Thomas: Trip to Europe helps recognize our shallow roots

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: When you were in Europe recently, did you learn anything while seeing historic Christianity that would give you insight as to how it affects your understanding of the way Christianity is practiced in the U.S. today?

AP file photo

Young evangelical voters stuck with 2 undesirable candidates

WASHINGTON (TNS) — Daniel Myers is holding out hope that Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump gets indicted before Election Day. It’s the only way he’ll be able to make a decision before stepping into the voting booth next Tuesday.

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To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Don’t use Bible to help sway people politically

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: Religion has a very unifying effect on its followers. Is it even possible to separate religion and politics (that govern our everyday lives)?

Experts explore Jesus’ tomb site

JERUSALEM — In the innermost chamber of the site said to be the tomb of Jesus, a restoration team has peeled away a marble layer for the first time in centuries in an effort to reach what it believes is the original rock surface where Jesus’ body was laid.

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The Rev. Christy Thomas: Seek defense in way that lessens violence

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: The Bible says to turn the other cheek when I am affronted. How do such words apply in a world full of radicalism, threats, rampant murders, bigotry and hate?

Religion calendar

To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

Milan honors Dalai Lama

MILAN — The Milan City Council bestowed honorary citizenship on the Dalai Lama on Thursday over the objections of Chinese Embassy, which said the gesture would have a negative impact on bilateral relations and regional cooperation.

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Wife should stop playing game with husband

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: I’ve been married nearly 16 years. My husband is a great guy in so many ways, but this last six months have become difficult. He has always been passive aggressive, but I can feel it getting worse.

AP file photo

Francis on migrant kids: Integrate, don’t repatriate

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has denounced the forced repatriation of unaccompanied children migrants who flee wars and poverty, saying countries should try to meet their needs rather than return them to uncertain futures back home.

Religion calendar

To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

Heads bowed for unity

Denton’s First United Methodist Church affirmed the commitment implied in its name on Sunday as it hosted a service of unity and prayer within its sanctuary.

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Church helps turn people away from evil

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: What do you do if you know a person is going to do something bad but has not executed it. Is there any way to stop the person? You have no hard evidence of the actions, but you...

AP

N.Y. archdiocese offers compensation to victims

NEW YORK — Victims of clergy sex abuse willing to forgo lawsuits against New York’s Roman Catholic archdiocese can seek compensation through a new church fund announced Thursday, but any records of such abuse and what the church did about problem priests will remain private.

Religion calender

To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

Pope presses Georgian Orthodox agenda despite Mass absence

TBILISI, Georgia — Pope Francis’ efforts to improve relations with the Georgian Orthodox Church suffered a setback Saturday after the patriarchate decided at the last minute not to send an official delegation to his Mass and reminded the Orthodox faithful they cannot participate in Catholic services.

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The Rev. Christy Thomas: Distractions move us from honest reflection

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: I’ve been noticing of late how intrusive I’ve let social media and media consumption in general become. So I’ve been banishing the tablet from my bed three nights a week, which has made me antsy and itchy.

AP file photo

Pope scheduled to visit Georgia, Azerbaijan with peace message

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis is wrapping up a Caucasus pilgrimage that began in June in Armenia and ends this weekend with a visit to two other countries with tiny Catholic communities: the Orthodox Christian bastion of Georgia and the largely Shiite Muslim nation of Azerbaijan.

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Religion calendar

To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

The Rev. Christy Thomas: To find deeper truth, let Bible be what it is

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: To say the religious right wreaked havoc with my spiritual life would be an understatement. It has been several years since my wife and I made our exit from that world and we still have not recovered.

AP

Saint’s heart goes on display at U.S. churches

LOWELL, Mass. (AP) — Hundreds of people came to a Massachusetts church on Wednesday for a glimpse of the glass-encased heart of a celebrated Roman Catholic saint, the first time the religious relic has left Italy.

Religion Calendar

To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Raising children is much different today

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: I have family members who believe that using birth control is sinful because children are a blessing from God. They believe that people who use birth control are not only sinful but exceedingly selfish for not wanting children. They also believe that barrenness is a curse from God. I think they are wrong but am not sure. Can you help out here?

AP file photo

Polygamous town remembers fatal flash flood

HILDALE, Utah (AP) — Members of a polygamous community on the Utah-Arizona border gathered for a memorial service marking the anniversary of flash floods that killed at least a dozen people. The Salt Lake Tribune reports that members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Short Creek on Wednesday night cursed the flood but praised relief efforts and first responders. About 150 people stood about a mile downstream from where the Hildale victims were swept away.

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Religion Calendar

To tell us about your event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

AP file photo

Retired pope offers final reflections on papacy

VATICAN CITY — Retired Pope Benedict XVI has acknowledged that governing the church wasn’t his strong suit but says he doesn’t see his papacy as a failure and that he succeeded at least in breaking up the Vatican’s so-called “gay lobby.”

The Rev. Christy Thomas: Time to expand traditional family values

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: What are traditional family values and who decided? Why is it such a buzz word and why is it a red flag to some of us?

Briefly in religion

Religion calendar

To tell us about your upcoming event or meeting, visit DentonRC.com and click on “Let Us Know” for our online forms; email to drc@dentonrc.com; fax to 940-566-6888; or mail to Religion Calendar, Denton Record-Chronicle, 314 E. Hickory St., Denton, TX 76201.

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Pope hails volunteers on eve of ceremony

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis on Saturday denounced what he called the modern-day sin of indifference to hunger, exploitation and other suffering, while commending the example of Mother Teresa on the eve of a sainthood ceremony for the nun who cared for India’s destitute.

Polygamous sect member allowed to write leader

SALT LAKE CITY — A polygamous sect member who believes writing to imprisoned sect leader Warren Jeffs is essential to his eternal salvation will be allowed to continue sending monthly letters while he awaits trial on food stamp fraud charges.

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