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Majority of teens live in ‘rejection’ families

More than half of American teens have grown up with parents who “rejected each other,” which bodes ill for the nation’s future leadership, productivity, wealth and well-being, says a new national report on American families.

Only 45 percent of teens, aged 15-17, have grown up from birth with their married, biological parents, says the new U.S. Index of Belonging and Rejection, released Wednesday by the Family Research Council.

These intact families are in the “belonging” category.

The other 55 percent of teens experienced some form of parental rejection in their young lives. They “have seen their mother and father walk away from each other,” explained director.

Prayer helps vent anger, up self-worth

MADISON, Wis., Dec. 14 (UPI) — In a study of victims of violent relationships with intimate partners, U.S. researchers found prayer helped them vent their anger.

Shane Sharp, a graduate sociology student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, interviewed dozens of victims of violent relationships with intimate partners and found prayer helped them not only vent anger, but it raised their self-worth and distracted them from their anxiety.

“I looked at the act of praying, of speaking to God, as the same as a legitimate social interaction,” Sharp says in a statement. “Instead of a concrete interaction you would have face-to-face with another person, prayer is with an imagined other.”

The word “imagined,” Sharp says, does not diminish God’s role.

“On the contrary, I wouldn’t expect prayer to have these benefits for people if they thought God wasn’t real,” Sharp says. “The important point is that they believe God is real, and that has consequences for them emotionally and for their behavior.”

U.N. cites ‘a slow but steady exodus’ of Iraqi Christians

(CNN) — Violence in recent weeks has prompted a “slow but steady exodus” of Christians from the Iraqi cities of Baghdad and Mosul, the U.N. refugee agency said on Friday.

The trend started after a Baghdad church attack on October 31 and subsequent targeted attacks of Christians in Baghdad and Mosul.

The total death toll at Our Lady of Salvation Church in Baghdad was 70, and 53 of the people killed in the strike were Christians, a minority group in a predominantly Muslim nation.

U.N. offices in Syria, Jordan and Lebanon are reporting a growing number of Iraqi Christian arrivals.

The U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights said Baghdad and Mosul Christians have been headed to other destinations in Iraq, such as the Kurdish region and the Nineveh Plains, a region in the north with a strong Christian presence.

“We have heard many accounts of people fleeing their homes after receiving direct threats. Some were able to take only a few belongings with them,” the agency said in a statement. “Churches and NGOs are warning us to expect more people fleeing in the coming weeks.”

Pagan prisoners given time off to worship the Sun God Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1336181/Pagan-prisoners-given-time-worship-Sun-God.

Hundreds of criminals are to be given four days a year off prison work – to celebrate pagan festivals.

Prison governors have been issued with a list of eight annual pagan holidays and told pagan inmates can choose four to celebrate.

The festivals include Imbolc – The Festival of the Lactating Sheep – which falls on February 1 and is dedicated to the goddess Brighid.

Jail celebration: Prisoners can get time off work to mark pagan festivals such as the Summer Solstice, being celebrated here at Stonehenge, WiltshireJail celebration: Prisoners can get time off work to mark pagan festivals such as the Summer Solstice, being celebrated here at Stonehenge, Wiltshire

 

pagan prisoners given time off to worship sun godCelebrating the summer solstice at Stonehenge. New guidelines entitled ‘Religious Festival dates for 2011′ state that all prison staff must be made aware of the pagan festival dates

 

Another is the festival of Beltane, which falls in early May, devotees are urged to celebrate the Sun God with ‘unabashed sexuality and promiscuity’.

The Yule festival involves pagans ‘casting spells’ and dressing up as ghosts.

Pagan inmates may even be allowed special food and drink on their days off.

Traditional pagan food include Ewe’s milk for Imbolc, Simnel Cake and eggs on Spring Equinox and Roast Goose on Autumn Equinox.

On Samhain – celebrated on Halloween – pagans by tradition go apple bobbing.

It is the latest in a series of rulings to protect convicts’ rights and ensure equality among different faiths.

New guidelines entitled ‘Religious Festival dates for 2011′ state that all prison staff must be made aware of the pagan festival dates.

It states: ‘The Prison Service is committed to ensuring that prisoners from all religious faiths are given the opportunity and facilities to practise their religions.’

It lists the eight main festivals before adding: ‘Most Pagans celebrate the eight festivals set out, but depending on the particular tradition would attach particular significance to certain days.’

‘Because of variations in emphasis between different Pagan traditions it has been agreed with the Pagan Federation that prisoners may choose four festivals on which they should not be required to work.’

Rights: Prison governors have been issued with a list of eight annual pagan holidays (file picture)Rights: Prison governors have been issued with a list of eight annual pagan holidays (file picture)

 

Prisons are told they must prepare specific foods if it is a requirement of a prisoner’s religion. But the guidance states the food should be prepared inside prison kitchens and the cost must be ‘proportionate to the number of prisoners involved’.

Paganism was first recognised by the Prison Service as a religion more than nine years ago.

The number of prisoners declaring themselves as pagan has tripled in six years to 366 last year.

Worshippers are allowed to keep tarot cards, a hoodless robe and a twig to use as a wand in their cell.

They can also keep incense, a piece of jewellery and rune stones.

Skyclad, or naked worship, is banned.

Pagan inmate Mark Stewart, who is serving a three year term for drug dealing at HMP Elmley in Kent, wrote to prisoners’ newspaper Inside Time this month to complain about how Pagans are treated.

He claimed Pagans had been ‘sidelined’ and ‘marginalised’ in favour of more popular religions.

He wrote: ‘There is a perception amongst most people that Pagans are devil worshippers, etc, but that is so far from the truth.

‘I am an earth loving person who thanks Mother Earth, spirits and ancestors for what I have today.

‘I do practise witchcraft, but only for good.’

Sources said there was ‘no question’ of prisoners being served roast goose or boar.

A Prison Service spokesman said: ‘The Prison Service issues annually a list of religious festival dates for the year ahead – this includes key dates on which prisoners registered in that affiliation can be excused from work.’

It comes a day after it emerged that an underworld crime boss jailed for the murder of two grandparents has won the right to be called ‘Mr’ by prison guards.

Colin Gunn complained that he was not treated with sufficient respect and, under guidelines introduced by Labour, prison officers are required to address inmates as they wish.

Pagan Festival dates


AGIFNA 2011 Registration Started

 

 

Registration

●Discounted rates are available only until April 30, 2011.
Special room rate until June 10,2011.
Regular rates are applicable after June 11, 2011.

 

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