Florida evangelicals on vaccine: Right thing to do or mark of the beast?

“We actually did a Q-and-A at our church – is the vaccine the mark of the beast, the end of all time, the apocalypse, and we’re like, no, that’s absolutely not true,” he said. “It’s not in the Bible. We’re not going to state anything with authority that we don’t see in Scripture. If we don’t see it there, we’ll take the principles of the Bible and apply them to that modern circumstance and then pray for wisdom and love and unity.” ... Read More

Many long-term care staffers refused the vaccine. Now they have more infections than residents.

Southern HealthCare Management, which operates 26 skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities across Florida, first offered $25 gift cards to persuade workers to get vaccinated, said Thomas O’Neill, vice president of program development. A week ago, in a new “Second Chance At The Shot” campaign, the company also offered two hours of pay if workers got vaccinated on their own time. And it offered prizes of $1,000 to $3,000 to improve employee break rooms at the facilities that hit... Read More

Matt Gaetz speaks at pro-Trump women’s group event in Doral: I’m ‘not going anywhere’

“The committee is aware of public allegations that Representative Matt Gaetz may have engaged in sexual misconduct and/or illicit drug use, shared inappropriate images or videos on the House floor, misused state identification records, converted campaign funds to personal use, and/or accepted a bribe, improper gratuity, or impermissible gift, in violation of House Rules, laws, or other standards of conduct,” said Chairman Rep. Ted Deutsch, D-Fla., and ranking Republican Rep. Jackie... Read More

‘I have not yet begun to fight,’ Matt Gaetz vows at Trump’s Doral golf club

“The committee is aware of public allegations that Representative Matt Gaetz may have engaged in sexual misconduct and/or illicit drug use, shared inappropriate images or videos on the House floor, misused state identification records, converted campaign funds to personal use, and/or accepted a bribe, improper gratuity, or impermissible gift, in violation of House Rules, laws, or other standards of conduct,” said Chairman Rep. Ted Deutsch, D-Fla., and ranking Republican Rep. Jackie... Read More

Protest bill backed in Florida Senate after emotional debate

The bill, passed in a party-line vote by the House last month, proposes a host of changes to criminal and civil laws. The new crime of “mob intimidation” would make it unlawful “for a person, assembled with two or more other persons and acting with a common intent, to use force or threaten to use imminent force, to compel or induce, or attempt to compel or induce, another person to do or refrain from doing any act or to assume, abandon, or maintain a particular viewpoint against his or... Read More

Three days of traffic jams loom as FEC plans to shut down crossing on Broward Boulevard

Slow-moving trains along the Florida East Coast Railway line have been part of the daily grind for commuters in downtown Fort Lauderdale. It’s scheduled to get worse next week when the railroad closes the Broward Boulevard crossing for two to three days for repairs. Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis, citing tourist season, says the project should be delayed until the summer. (SunSentinel.com) ... Read More

Died: Ashur Eskrya, Champion of Iraq’s Displaced Christians

President of the Assyrian Aid Society–Iraq (AASI) passes away from COVID-19 complications. Ashur Sargon Eskrya, president of the Assyrian Aid Society–Iraq (AASI), passed away today from COVID-19 complications. A champion of the Assyrian Christian minority, he was also a central figure in US efforts to shelter refugees from ISIS and later rebuild the Nineveh Plains. AASI was honored for its work with a Nobel Peace Prize nomination in 2016. “Ashur has played a prominent role in... Read More

Florida lawmaker warns businesses ‘to stay in their lane,’ citing ‘much more’ voter access than Georgia

“In response to the numerous voter suppression bills being pushed by legislatures across the country, it is imperative that corporations utilize their influence in opposing these proposals that attack our democracy and threaten to disenfranchise minority voters by adding more difficult and unnecessary barriers to voting,” Rep. Fentrice Driskell, D-Tampa, said in a statement released Tuesday. “Now more than ever, we need their alliance in protecting our democratic process. I urge... Read More

An Altar Call for Backsliding Book People

Two authors encourage Christians to rededicate themselves to attentive, artful reading. Among many evangelical literature-lovers (and likely many CT readers), Leland Ryken is a familiar name. Longtime (now emeritus) professor of English at Wheaton College, he is the author of numerous books, including The Christian Imagination and How to Read the Bible as Literature. In his latest offering, Recovering the Lost Art of Reading, he teams up with professional writer Glenda Faye Mathes to take on... Read More

Remembering Robert E. Cooley, Former President of Gordon-Conwell

He brought archaeological expertise to Israel, Egypt, and North America. If you met Robert E. Cooley, you remember his arresting handshake. If you sat in a meeting with him, you recall a brilliance that stopped committee chatter or—more improbably—made sudden sense of it. If you worked with him, you remember a measured decisiveness that could pull your organization back to its mission or lead a whole new movement. Cooley, a Near Eastern archaeologist and former president of... Read More