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Friday’s religion wrap

The Journey team selects stories that got us talking this week.

“Miraculous” praise for escape from blaze

The Express reports on a blaze in a Serbian church that left everything destroyed except the faces of Jesus Christ, John the Baptist and Saint Peter on icons. While some were impressed by the apparent miracle there may be a more mundane reason behind the facial imagery surviving the flames: the icons are made from 24 karat gold and is therefore more resistant to fire damage.

Still one local who witnessed the event declared, “Glory to God and his worshippers.”

No dessert-ing free speech rights, says Judge

Bakersfield.com has the latest on a legal stoush involving a bakery owner who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-gender couple due to her Christian beliefs: a judge has issued a ruling in favour of the owner of the bakery.

“The right to freedom of speech under the First Amendment outweighs the State’s interest in ensuring a freely accessible marketplace,” wrote Superior Court Judge David Lampe. “The right of freedom of thought guaranteed by the First Amendment includes the right to speak, and the right to refrain from speaking. Sometimes the most profound protest is silence.”

In the battle versus sport, church comes up short?

Forbes examines the “battle” for family time between church attendance and kids sports and finds the church is in a losing position. Citing a recent Christianity Today article which also discusses the impact of youth sports on church attendance, author Bob Cook looks at how sport is itself a religion of sorts.

“There’s a fundamental, not fundamentalist, reason parents choose sports or other activities over church. God will always be there for you, but that spot on the basketball team or at Harvard will not.”

Christianity to be Chuck-ed with new king?

CBN News speculates whether Christianity will be a significant feature of a coronation ceremony for Prince Charles when he takes the throne. The University College London’s Constitution Unit states the coronation ceremony should “cut back on its overtly Christian rituals for the sake of progress” and that a celebration should “reflect what the United Kingdom has become rather than what it once was.”

Not everyone is in agreement: the former Dean of Westminster Wesley Carr still thinks the service needs to be Anglican. “To plan a coronation without a Eucharist would require a massive break with history. That alone would imply a long study of the intention behind a coronation at all, its venue and basic structure.”

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