World News Briefs - July 2009

July 01, 2009

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United Kingdom

BBC Names Muslim Head of Religious Programming

The British Broadcasting Corporation, the world’s largest broadcaster, has appointed a Muslim as head of religious programming. The position is considered one of the most influential religious roles in the United Kingdom. Aaqil Ahmed has been serving as an executive at another channel and has 10 years of experience in religious broadcasting. His appointment is receiving mixed responses among British Christians.



ADRA Provides Flood Relief

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency is providing food baskets to hundreds of families affected by severe flooding in northeastern Brazil. Nearly 270,000 people were forced to leave their homes during the May floods. High waters have destroyed thousands of homes and left many rural farmers without a source of income. ADRA is providing food aid and personal necessities throughout the region, focusing on the elderly, children and struggling farmers.

Source: Adventist News Network


Paulsen Makes Historic Visit

In May, Jan Paulsen, Seventh-day Adventist World Church president, became the first person in his position to visit China in more than 60 years. Paulsen met with church leaders and worshiped with local congregations. “I am often asked, ‘How are our brothers and sisters in China?’ Now I will be able to say, ‘They are well and vibrant,'” says Paulsen. Nearly 400,000 Adventists worship in thousands of locations throughout China.

Source: Adventist News Network


Adventist Church Responds to Swine Flu

In response to the swine flu outbreak in Mexico during April, the Seventh-day Adventist Church suspended worship services in 2,571 churches and classes in 230 schools. The measures were part of a federal mandate to shut down large gatherings and all public and private schools through May 6. In addition, camp meetings, conventions and church-sponsored trips outside the country were cancelled.

Source: Adventist News Network

Dominican Republic

Thousands Attend Religious Freedom Festival

Religious liberty leaders from 13 Latin American countries gathered in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, during April to discuss religious freedom trends in the region. Following the conference, 13,000 people attended the first Festival of Religious Freedom on May 2. Church leaders praise the events as a sign of the value placed on religious freedom in a region which has been historically dominated by Catholicism.

Source: Adventist News Network