One-time prominent Baptist minister Johnny Hunt has filed a lawsuit against his denomination, the Southern Baptist Convention. He accuses them of defamation in handling news of his sexual episode with another man’s wife. The report of his activity was included in a document prepared by Guidepost Consulting, which had been hired by the SBC to document denominational history related to sexual abuse. The complaint alleges the SBC and Guidepost engaged in defamation and libel, that they invaded Hunt’s privacy, and intentionally caused emotional harm.
The Catholic Diocese of Albany has become the eighth in the state of New York to file for bankruptcy as a way to handle the flood of lawsuits charging the religious organizations with turning a blind eye to sexual abuse by clergy. In California, the Diocese of Oakland is threatening bankruptcy. Both New York and California temporarily lifted their statute of limitations, allowing hundreds of people to file lawsuits. Bankruptcy allows organizations to distribute available funds to many more people, albeit at lower amounts.
New York, Florida, Ohio, and California are just some of the states where local school boards are adding a Muslim holy day to the school calendar. That day is Eid al-Fatr, the last day of the Ramadan fast. Ramadan is a month-long celebration that rotates through the year. When Eid al-Fatr falls on a school day, districts are providing students (but not teachers) a day off. Eid al-Fatr is an Arabic phrase that means “the end of the fast.” Some schools have been observing the holiday for as long as ten years.
After three weekends in the theaters, the new movie “Jesus Revolution” has taken in more than $45 million in ticket sales. That far surpasses the entire $15 million budget to produce the film. Audience responses, as measured by the industry tool Rotten Tomatoes, factor in at an A+. The movie traces the early history of the Jesus Movement in California in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Critics have been more moderate in their evaluation of the movie, and numerous participants in the original events have challenged the film’s version of events.
Following the forced resignation of the president of a small evangelical seminary in Chicago, Northern, the board has now received the resignation of the acting chair of the board. Long-time supporter Fay Quanstrom, an alumna of the Illinois seminary and associate pastor at Gold Canyon United Methodist Church in Arizona, stated her convictions that the board had provided an inadequate response to the concerns from students, faculty and staff after President Bill Shiell resigned March 13. She contends that the board was too concerned about Shiell and the school and not focused enough on the complaints of students, especially women.