Religion Briefs

Posted: Friday, November 24, 2000

Education and Christianity topic for Sunday

Don Oberg will bring the morning message to the congregation of the United Methodist Church of the New Covenant in Kenai. He will speak on "Education and Christianity."

Jim Evanson will lead the service. Following the 11 a.m. service, a potluck will be held in the fellowship hall. The church is across the street from the Boys and Girls Club; all are welcome.

Craft sale will raise funds for others

Soldotna United Methodist Church is holding its annual 10,000 Villages Sale of handmade crafts from developing countries. This nonprofit mission outreach will be held today and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, call 262-5776.

Gays protest donation to Christian academy

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- A gay-rights group is criticizing an $8.35 million donation by the wife of America Online chairman Steve Case to the high school she attended. The school is run by a church that strongly opposes homosexual activity and sponsors ads saying gays can become heterosexual.

The Washington-based Human Rights Campaign wants Jean Case to reconsider her gift to Westminster Academy due to its ties with the Rev. D. James Kennedy's Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church.

The school is ''inexorably linked to teachings that say gay and lesbian Americans are not worthy of dignity, respect and full citizenship,'' Human Rights Campaign executive director Elizabeth Birch wrote the Cases. ''Your gift will only create an assembly line of hate and intolerance.''

Jean Case said the donation will benefit children, not the church. ''In no way was the gift intended to send a message of intolerance,'' she wrote. ''Steve and I strongly oppose discrimination of any kind.''

The academy will use the money for a new building, scholarships for needy students and technological training.

AIDS deaths among Catholic priests higher

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The Kansas City Star reports that the death rate from AIDS among U.S. Roman Catholic priests is higher than it estimated in a January series.

The newspaper originally reported that hundreds of priests had died since 1983. The follow-up, relying on 14 states where death records are public, put the total at more than 300. Since records are sealed in other states, experts said the exact AIDS toll will never be known.

In the 14 states, the Star found priests' death rate more than double that among all adult males.

The National Conference of Catholic Bishops said the original report ''extrapolated from a handful of tragic but isolated cases to manufacture a crisis that does not exist.''

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