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February 24 2004 By virtueonline CHINA: Huge Christian Growth Shocks China's leaders

"They will especially hunt those in Beijing," a Hong Kong source told CT. "I t took them by surprise that there were so many Christians in China. Every week pastors are arrested and thrown in jail. The communists see Christians a s a threat because there are [more] Christians than party members."

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February 23 2004 By virtueonline AUSTRALIA: Sydney choir cancels US tour. Blames Robinson consecration

Phillip Heath, the head of the Cathedral School, where the 24 choristers are educated on school scholarships, confirmed that the choir tour, but not the orchestra tour, had been cancelled by a decision of the school council. The choir represented the cathedral, the church of the diocese, but the orchestra represented only the school, he said; the orchestra would continue to offer concerts in school-based institutions in the US.

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February 23 2004 By virtueonline BELFAST: Gay clerics: Anglicans urge calm

Members of the 17-strong Commission said that that they were saddened, however, that "tensions within the Communion, exacerbated by the use of strident language, have continued to rise in recent months".

The Commission was set up last October by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, in the midst of the controversy over the appointment of Dr Gene Robinson, a practising homosexual as a Bishop in New Hampshire in the USA.

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February 23 2004 By virtueonline WEST TENNESSEE: Episcopalians back unity. Vote angers Conservatives

On the final day of the diocese's annual convention meeting here, clergy and lay delegates passed a resolution supporting Bishop Don Johnson "in his leadership and commitment to unity." The church vote calls for Johnson to formulate a pastoral response for church members who disagree with gay ordinations and same-sex unions both of which were approved during last year's General Convention and to work with a commission to study the issues of marriage, human sexuality and the blessing of same-s

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February 21 2004 By virtueonline Stray Pastors and Biblical Worldviews

The Christian pollster George Barna put together a list of biblical
teachings that presumably Christians of every denomination or
theological tradition could affirm: There is absolute moral truth based
on the Bible; biblical teaching is accurate; Jesus was without sin;
Satan literally exists; God is omnipotent and omniscient; salvation is
by grace alone; Christians have a personal responsibility to evangelize.

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February 21 2004 By virtueonline ECUSA: Blasphemous Eucharist Held at Episcopal Divinity School

Planned by the seminary's gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered
students, alumni/ae, faculty, staff, and friends, the service began with
a "parade of anger" which marched between a row of wooden crosses on
which hung photographs of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered
people who have been victims of hate crimes.

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February 21 2004 By virtueonline AAC: "Who is Doing the Dividing?"

In an interview with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Duncan said some of
his earliest memories revolve around attending church in his hometown of
Bordentown, N.J. The church was stable and reliable, a sanctuary for a
boy whose home life often included beatings from his emotionally
disturbed mother. In a society that he calls highly sexualized and
confused, Duncan believes Robinson is clearly outside the moral bounds
of the Anglican Communion.

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February 20 2004 By virtueonline SOUTHWEST FLORIDA: An Open Letter to Bishop Lipscomb

Dear Bishop,

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February 20 2004 By virtueonline WASHINGTON: Area Churches Will Use 'Passion' for Outreach

"Pastors have awakened to the fact that this is a major cultural phenomenon that will present many opportunities to share the Gospel," said Al Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky.

Denny Harris, director of ministry operations at McLean Bible Church, said special showings of "Passion" for members of the church and their guests begin Monday, two days before the film opens in 2,000 theaters nationwide.

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February 20 2004 By virtueonline CENTRAL FLORIDA: Diocese Tries to Keep Church's Property

Members of the governing board of the Episcopal Church of the New Covenant
voted Jan. 18 to leave the denomination.

"Our vestry does not feel at this point that we can remain underneath the
authority of an organization that we feel has departed from the historical
Christian faith and order," said Scott Culp, secretary to the church's
governing board.

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