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    The World’s Biggest Christmas Tree Hasn’t Helped Sri Lankan Christians
    Attacks on minority faiths keep increasing in the majority-Buddhist island nation.
    These Trump Advisers Want a Dreamers Deal Enough to Meet with Nancy Pelosi
    Evangelicals join the push for protection for young immigrants.
  • News & Reporting

    The Top 50 Countries Where It’s Most Dangerous to Follow Jesus

    If trends continue, North Korea will no longer be the world’s worst persecutor of Christians.

    For decades, North Korea has clearly been the world’s worst persecutor of Christians. But now, another nation nearly matches it.

    Open Doors released today its 2018 World Watch List (WWL), an annual ranking of the 50 countries where it is most dangerous to follow Jesus. Approximately 215 million Christians now experience high, very high, or extreme levels of persecution; that means 1 in 12 Christians live where Christianity is “illegal, forbidden, or punished,” according to Open Doors researchers.

    Kim Jung-un’s country hasn’t moved from the No. 1 spot on the list for 16 years in a row. “With more than 50,000 in prison or labor camps, such a ranking is little surprise for the totalitarian regime that controls every aspect of life in the country and forces worship of the Kim family,” Open Doors reported.

    But rivaling it this year is Afghanistan, which ranked No. 2 by less than a point. North Korea’s total score was 94 (on a 100-point scale), pushed above Afghanistan’s 93 by a 0.6 difference in their violence rating. In the other five categories measured—private life, family life, community life, national life, and church life—both countries received the worst scores possible.

    “Never before have the top two countries been so close in incidents,” Open Doors USA president and CEO David Curry stated. “Both countries are extreme in intolerance and outright persecution of Christians in every area Open Doors monitors.”

    The rising persecution in Afghanistan “is a tragedy considering the efforts being made by the international community to help rebuild Afghanistan are failing to ensure freedom of religion,” stated Curry. “Reports of ...

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    Are Pro-Life and Pro-Choice Women Any Closer to Finding Common Ground?

    A year after the first Women’s March, politics continue to splinter the women’s movement.

    Last year’s record-setting Women’s March—filling Washington D.C. and hundreds of other cities with streams of pink hats and feminist placards—launched an important discussion about the place of pro-life and conservative women in the movement, after multiple women’s groups opposing abortion were barred from officially participating.

    But a lot has changed in the year since President Donald Trump took office, particularly when it comes to women’s issues. In 2017, America saw women across industries, faith groups, and political persuasions speak out in an unprecedented way against the ongoing endemic of sexual harassment.

    The issue proved sadly universal; the #MeToo movement prompted stories from “liberal” Hollywood to conservative Fox News, from “secular” Silicon Valley to Christian congregations, with the launch of #ChurchToo and #SilenceIsNotSpiritual hashtags.

    The shared concern over abuse at the hands of men in power, now discussed with more openness and urgency, seems to have the potential to bring women together. But ahead of this upcoming Women’s March, the event maintains many of the political divides Americans have come to expect between women.

    Though marches will still take place in Washington, New York, and at 250 other local affiliates, the main demonstration is being held Sunday in Las Vegas, marketed as a get-out-the-vote rally for women in swing states, with the tagline “Power to the Polls.” Adding to the political tension is that it falls on the very same weekend as the annual March for Life in Washington—the country’s largest demonstration against abortion and increasingly a destination for evangelical groups.

    While public ...

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    Luis Palau Reveals Stage 4 Lung Cancer, Asks for Prayer

    ‘It would literally take a miracle,’ says renowned evangelist ready for heaven.

    In a 12-minute YouTube video, international evangelist Luis Palau revealed yesterday that he has been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer.

    After Palau, 83, and his wife Patricia “had a super busy fall … traveling around the world sharing the Good News like they always do,” explained his son Kevin Palau, the evangelist returned from a long trip to the United Kingdom in December “with kind of a chest cold … that wouldn’t go away.”

    “We finally got Dad to go into the doctor,” said Kevin, president and CEO of the Luis Palau Association. “And to our surprise, the early report we got, just before Christmas, was that there was some cancer in one of Dad’s lungs.”

    A few days ago, the family learned that the cancer is in stage 4—the most advanced stage, which for lung cancer has (in general) a five-year survival rate of less than 10 percent.

    “That’s the reality we are dealing with now,” said Kevin. “[We’re] praying about what that means. … Mostly we are asking for people’s prayers.”

    “It was a shock,” said Luis. “I haven’t been in a hospital one night, except when I broke a bone back in 1984 after Mission to London.”

    “The first thing you do, in my case, is cry. I think, ‘oh wow, I could be gone in a few months,’” said the senior Palau. But he doesn’t feel “panic or horror.”

    “Many people are praying that the Lord would do a miracle,” he said. “It would literally take a miracle. Medically speaking … stage 4 is big time.”

    On the ministry’s website, Palau wrote in a health update:

    As we seek the best medical advice ...

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    Why Ralph Winter’s Missions Mobilizer Is Up for Sale

    Shift in global evangelism prompts downsizing of US Center for World Mission’s famous Pasadena property—but not all alumni are ready to say goodbye.

    The late missiologist Ralph Winter envisioned a place to “awaken” a million evangelicals to the world’s unreached people groups. It took nearly 10 years of fundraising, and donors big and small, to pay off the $15 million property in Pasadena, California, that became the US Center for World Mission (now Frontier Ventures) and William Carey International University (WCIU).

    More than four decades later, with the missions landscape evolving and the Southern California cost of living continuing to skyrocket, Frontier Ventures and the university are in a non-binding agreement to sell the majority of the property their forebears had rallied to buy.

    Frontier Ventures president Fran Patt and WCIU president Kevin Higgins confirmed to CT that they’ve been in talks with a potential buyer for the past month. Up for sale are roughly 15 acres of campus, a 2.5-acre soccer field near the Frontier Ventures office building, and a yet-to-be-determined portion of surrounding property, which includes homes, dorm-style residences, and office space owned by WCIU.

    The partner ministries plan to maintain a smaller footprint in Pasadena, keeping the Frontier Ventures building known as Hudson Taylor Hall and, at this point, at least half the homes they own. Patt and Higgins declined to discuss the estimated value of the property or the amount of the offer.

    “There are still a number of challenges: we need to agree on all the exact details, and that will take time,” Higgins wrote in a blog post in December. “Even once we get to that agreement, there will be significant time needed as the buyer would need to secure their funding.”

    The ministries’ leaders have considered selling off a portion of the property ...

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  • Women

    God’s Message to #MeToo Victims and Perpetrators
    Scripture offers a radical framework for understanding anger and forgiveness.
    Why I’ve Spent Half My Life Helping North Korea
    Despite political and military tensions in the region, the director of Christian Friends of Korea is committed to medical ministry.
    Hiding the Full Truth from Kids Is Often Healthy
    As our children come of age, how do we talk about the brutal realities of a broken world?
    Swipe Right for Jesus
    How Tinder helped me come to terms with my evangelical identity.
  • CT Music

    Interview: Creating Worship Songs for a Welcoming Community
    Isaac Wardell’s latest collaborative project, The Porter’s Gate, marks a change from Bifrost Arts.
    Interview: Don’t Miss Steven Curtis Chapman’s Point
    Even his happiest, most heartwarming music has been fueled by tragedy and pain.
    Review: Crowder Goes Hog Wild
    "Neon Steeple" is a throwback and a step forward at the same time.
    Review: The Musician Is a Master
    To understand why Phil Keaggy is receiving ASCAP's Golden Note Award, you really need just one album.
  • CT Movies

    Review: Joy
    The film is uneven, but Joy knows just who she is.
    Review: The Revenant
    In the 1820s frontier wilderness, survival is a bear.
    Review: Concussion
    Hollywood tries to turn a clash between science and a powerful institution into an immigrant doctor's "such a time as this."
    Review: 45 Years
    When the ground beneath a marriage is shaken, can it hold up?
  • Most-Read Articles

    Why We Need to Talk about Trump’s Haiti Remarks
    Christians can expand their compassion by looking at the deeper story of development and immigration.
    The Rise of Reformed Charismatics
    A 21st-century global movement sets the Word on fire with gospel preaching and powerful spiritual gifts.
    How ‘Oh Happy Day’ Gave Gospel a New Beat
    A tribute to the legendary composer, singer, and pianist Edwin Hawkins.
    Looking for Ancient African Religion? Try Christianity.
    The African religious imagination already anticipates Christ.
In Defense of Pro-Life ‘Hypocrisy’
In Defense of Pro-Life ‘Hypocrisy’
Analogies between abortion and other “life issues” are shakier than we sometimes suppose.
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