CAROL STREAM, Ill. (AP) -- ''The Hiding Place'' by Corrie ten Boom and ''Surprised by Joy'' by C. S. Lewis top a list of best 20th century biographies and autobiographies picked by Christian Reader, an evangelical Protestant magazine.
Judges' other choices, in order:
''The Gulag Archipelago'' by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, ''Born Again'' by Charles Colson, ''The Cross and the Switchblade'' by David Wilkerson, ''Through Gates of Splendor'' by Elisabeth Elliot, ''A Severe Mercy'' by Sheldon Vanauken, ''The Seven Storey Mountain'' by Thomas Merton, ''Power of the Powerless'' by Christopher de Vinck, ''Something Beautiful for God'' by Malcolm Muggeridge (on Mother Teresa), and a tie between ''A Prophet with Honor'' by Walter Martin (on Billy Graham) and ''Here I Stand'' by Roland Bainton (on Martin Luther).
On the Net: www.ChristianityOnline.com/cr
Interfaith alliance says voters want stronger families
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) -- An alliance of Protestants, Catholics, Jews and Muslims that advocates pro-marriage policies released a poll showing voters think strengthening families is a much more important social goal than adding jobs or cleaning up the environment.
The Wirthlin poll for the Alliance for Marriage also showed 59 percent thought the American family is ''not very strong'' or ''weak and losing ground.''
There was little difference in opinions among Democrats, Republicans and independents.
The alliance favors lower taxes for families with children, affordable adoption, mandatory counseling for couples considering divorce, public education stressing the value of marriage and employer policies to accommodate parents.
The telephone poll of 1,030 adults had a margin of error of 3 percent.
On the Net: www.allianceformarriage.org
Vatican reports bishop is being held in Congo's capital
VATICAN CITY (AP) -- Authorities in Congo are refusing to let a Roman Catholic bishop leave the nation's capital, accusing him of favoring rebels in his home diocese of Manono, the Vatican missionary news service said.
The Fides service reported that Bishop Nestor Ngoy Katahwa, 57, was arrested July 28 on a visit to Kinshasa and released the next day with orders not to leave.
This was at least the third time Congo authorities have arrested and released bishops, Kinshasa's Cardinal Frederic Etsou Nzabi Bamungwabi told Fides. He denied the accusations against Katahwa and called the arrests an attempt to ''humiliate'' the church.
Archbishop Emmanuel Kataliko remains in exile in rebel-held Butembo in northern Congo. A rival rebel group has blocked his return to his Bukavu diocese since February, despite appeals by Pope John Paul II.
Islamic mosque request rejected in Maryland county
FREDERICK, Md. (AP) -- The Frederick County board has rejected a request to suspend suburban sprawl regulations and allow construction of the county's first Islamic mosque.
The nearest mosque is in Hagerstown, 27 miles away; other local Muslims travel to worship in Baltimore, Silver Spring and Falls Church, Va.
Foes of runaway county growth said they were unfairly portrayed as anti-Islamic bigots by speakers such as Syed Habeeb Ashruf, a Baltimore area representative of the American Muslim Council.
Board President David Gray said the 3-2 decision protected the public water system, outweighing Muslims' hopes to tap restricted water and sewer lines. He offered to help them find a more suitable mosque location.
Muslims plan to appeal the decision.
A previous county board voted water exceptions for a youth baseball camp and a soccer complex, but neither project was built.
Egyptian pope consecrates Tennessee's first Coptic Orthodox church
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Pope Shenouda III, head of Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Church, has consecrated the altars, icons and baptistry of Tennessee's first fully established Coptic congregation.
Coptic leaders, members and visitors from across the U.S. packed the sanctuary for the service led by the 77-year-old pope at St. Mina Coptic Orthodox Church.
Copts make up nearly 10 percent of the population in Egypt, where Islam is the state religion. The Coptic community worldwide is estimated at 27 million.
St. Mina began in 1986 with 18 families and now counts 450 families due to an influx of Egyptian workers to the city. Another Tennessee congregation is being formed in Knoxville.
''This is a day I will not forget,'' said Olfat Nashed, whose son was baptized by the pope.
End Adv for Friday, Sept. 1
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