Important developments in the church and the world (as they appeared in our March issue).
How Pastors Perceive Domestic Violence
LifeWay Research surveyed 1,000 senior pastors on how their churches minister to people experiencing domestic violence. Almost all evangelical pastors believe that victims would find their church to be a safe haven. But here’s what they said on how common the problem is, how they respond to allegations, and whether divorce is the best option.
About 1 in 10 of Compassion International’s sponsored children are in India, where the government has required new approvals before NGOs can transfer foreign funds. After seeking such approval for nine months, “we have concluded the clearance process is fiction,” Compassion stated in December. Running out of funds for its 580 Indian-run child centers, the ministry asked the US government for help, saying it was “weeks away from permanently withdrawing” and leaving 145,000 Indian children behind. India is a secular country, but has seen a rise in Christian persecution as Hindu nationalists have gained political power in recent years.
A new law strengthening the ability of the United States to promote religious freedom overseas has passed unanimously—House, Senate, and President Obama. The legislation allows the US ambassador-at-large for religious freedom to report directly to the secretary of state, flags “entities of particular concern” in addition to nations, and institutes a “designated persons list” to identify and allow sanctions against individuals who persecute religious minorities. The update to the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) was named after Frank Wolf, a longtime congressman …