NEWS

Religion News: Video games go Christian

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Guitar game features Christian rock bands

Digital Praise, a company that specializes in Christian-themed software, is adding to its lineup. The company already sells its “Dance Praise” game that draws on the popularity of other dance games such as “Dance Dance Revolution.”

Now, following the lead of the increasingly popular “Guitar Hero” and “Rock Band” games, it is planning to debut “Guitar Praise.”

“Guitar Praise” lets players play along with Christian rock tunes. The playlist includes titles from Flyleaf, Skillet, Stellar Kart, tobyMac, Newsboys, Petra, 12 Stones, Spoken, Whitecross, Thousand Foot Krutch, Paul Baloche, David Crowder, and Red.

The game will be on display during this week’s Christian Retail Show 2008 and is scheduled for a Sept. 25 release.

Bishops boycott Anglican conference

Anglican bishops on Wednesday boycotted a gathering of church leaders as the church remained divided over gay clergy.

According to wire reports, church officials said 230 of the 880 bishops in the Anglican worldwide communion were staying away from the Lambeth conference being held in Canterbury, England. Liberal and conservative clergy have been divided over the ordination in 2003 of Gene Robinson in New Hampshire, the first openly gay bishop in the church's 450-year history.

Conservative Anglican leaders staged their own conference in Jerusalem last month at which they pledged to form a council of bishops to provide an alternative to churches who they say are preaching a "false gospel" of sexual immorality.

Survey Says

The Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life surveyed more than 35,000 Americans in order to comprehensively examine the country’s religious landscape.

The survey reveals that people who are not affiliated with a particular religious tradition do not necessarily lack religious beliefs or practices. A large portion (41 percent) of the unaffiliated population says religion is at least somewhat important in their lives, seven-in-ten say they believe in God, and more than a quarter (27 percent) say they attend religious services at least a few times a year.

Good Book?

“When the Game Is Over, It All Goes Back in the Box” by John Ortberg

Pastor and bestselling author John Ortberg offers an instruction manual for Christian game players of all ages. Using games as a metaphor, Ortberg presents carefully considered tactics for succeeding in life from God's vantage point.

Each chapter weaves the rules of gaming with the Christian journey: understanding the object of the game (being spiritually rich toward God); the setup (keeping score, taking turns, preventing regret); how to play (with rules, gratitude and a mission); hazards (competition, greed, losing); and winning (choosing the right trophies).

Christians will especially appreciate Ortberg's wise counsel on being the kind of player other people want to sit next to, as he exhorts readers to learn to lose with grace, win with grace and forgive with grace. Perspective is key; after all, when the game is over, it all goes back in the box. – Publisher’s Weekly

Get to Know …

Aimee Semple McPherson (Oct. 9, 1890–Sept. 27, 1944), also known as "Sister Aimee" or "Sister," was a Canadian-born evangelist and media sensation in the 1920s and 1930s.

Also the founder of the Foursquare Church, she was a pioneer in the use of modern media, especially radio, to create a form of religion that drew heavily on the appeal of popular entertainment.

In 1916, she made a tour through the southern United States in her "Gospel Car," a 1912 Packard touring car emblazoned with religious slogans. Standing in the back seat of the convertible, she gave sermons through a megaphone.

McPherson disappeared for 35 days in 1926, and claimed that she had been kidnapped, drugged, tortured and held for ransom in a shack in Mexico, then had escaped and walked through the desert to freedom. Theories and innuendo abounded -- she had run off with a lover, she had had an abortion, she was recovering from plastic surgery, she had staged the whole thing as a publicity stunt – with no answer ever reached.

McPherson continued her ministry after the controversy over the alleged abduction diminished, but she fell out of favor with the press. She died in 1944 of what was believed to be an accidental drug overdose. – Wikipedia.com

The Word

Ketubah: A Jewish marriage contract that specifies the groom's obligations to the bride. -- Religioustolerance.org

Religion Around the World

Religious makeup of Papua New Guinea

Roman Catholic: 22 percent

Lutheran: 16 percent

Presbyterian/Methodist/London Missionary Society: 8 percent

Anglican: 5 percent

Evangelical Alliance: 4 percent

Seventh-Day Adventist: 1 percent

Other Protestant: 10 percent

Indigenous beliefs: 34 percent

- CIA Factbook

GateHouse News Service