One death to report today. Noted Washington Post columnist and, before that, presidential speech writer Michael Gerson died at the age of 58 from liver cancer. Gerson was born, educated, and participated in the Evangelical Christian culture, graduating from Wheaton University. He frequently brought his deep religious faith into his writing for the general public.
Former U S President Donald Trump formally announced his candidacy for another term as president. But this time, his significant network of support from religious leaders appears to be very week. Very few attended the event at his home estate in Florida, and even fewer responded to his announcement with strong endorsement. Noted endorser Rev. Robert Jeffress of Texas was non-committal, as were Rev. Paula White-Cain of Florida and Rev. Mike Evans of Texas. One group to keep your eye on is Pentecostals, especially those in the Latino community.
Ken Ham announced that his non-profit religious organization Answers in Genesis has purchased a 205,000 building and campus to house its Answers Academy. It is the property that once housed the North American headquarters of Toyota in northern Kentucky. The paid 31.3 million dollars. The Answers Academy is a K-12 school. The new facility will allow it to accommodate up to 500 students. Answers in Genesis owns and operates the replica of Noah’s ark. They are planning to build a replica of the Tower of Babel.
Ministry Watch is an organization that monitors the revenue income of Christian ministries. They just published their list of the top income religious non-profits:
- Grand Canyon University, $1.47 billion
- Liberty University, $1.34 billion
- Baylor University, $1.25 billion
- World Vision, No. 4, $1,23 billion.
- Compassion International, No. 5, $1.1 billion.
- Catholic Relief Services, No. 6, $924 million.
- Samaritan’s Purse, No. 7, $899 million.
- MAP International, No. 8, $822 million.
- Food for the Poor, No. 9, $755 million.
- Feed the Children, No. 10, $610 million.
- Cru, No. 11, $600 million.
- Mercy Corps, No. 13, $565 million.
- Catholic Medical Mission Board, No. 14, $476 million.
- Convoy of Hope, No. 15, $439 million.
- Christian Broadcasting Network, No. 16, $391 million.
- Habitat for Humanity International, No. 18, $362 million.
- Young Life, No. 19, $361 million.
- Covenant House, No. 20, $320 million.
More than 6,000 Jewish rabbis and their families and friends gathered in New York this year for their annual convention, complete with workshops, veneration of graves, dedication of hand-written Torah scrolls, and an annual group picture. They are part of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement, which in turn represents the Hasidic wing of Orthodox Judaism. Hasidim emphasize the joyful, dancing part of Judaism, even while they adhere to strict rules about dress, behavior, and doctrine