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Breaking News from Harvard: Faith is Good for You

The Bible tells us that there is nothing new under the sun (Ecc. 1:9). So often what passes for “news” is really nothing more than a refresher. A case in point is a new study from published this month in the American Journal of Epidemiology about the link between religious upbringing and subsequent health and well-being.

One not-so-surprising finding of the study, which was done by Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, is that, “Compared with no attendance, at least weekly attendance of religious services was associated with greater life satisfaction and positive affect, a number of character strengths, lower probabilities of marijuana use and early sexual initiation, and fewer lifetime sexual partners.” Additionally, among the studies’ participants:

“Compared with never praying or meditating, at least daily practice was associated with greater positive affect, emotional processing, and emotional expression; greater volunteering, greater sense of mission, and more forgiveness; lower likelihoods of drug use, early sexual initiation, STIs, and abnormal Pap test results; and fewer lifetime sexual partners.”

These findings aren’t a surprise to us here at FRC. For years, we’ve seen this in practice, and in data like those published by our friend Pat Fagan at the Marriage and Religion Research Institute. It is a demonstrable fact that when faith is allowed to flourish, good outcomes are in store for society at large.

The study’s author observes,

“These findings are important for both our understanding of health and our understanding of parenting practices. Many children are raised religiously, and our study shows that this can powerfully affect their health behaviors, mental health, and overall happiness and well-being.”

Of course, we know that “faith” in a generic sense doesn’t always guarantee a comfortable outcome, but an abiding faith in Jesus Christ can anchor a person’s soul for whatever he or she may face in life. A study like this won’t necessarily cause people to embrace faith, but it does show that a society in which religious liberty thrives will be a healthier society. And any government that wants to promote the well-being of its people should give ample space for people to have the freedom to believe and to live out those beliefs.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


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As the Family Goes So Goes the Nation

My Dad used to tell me that a nation (particularly the United States) is only as strong as her families. He began telling me that when I was just a little boy attending kindergarten. Our Cleveland neighborhood where I grew up was at that time an ideal leafy enclave of close knit families and neighbors. It was comprised of a mixture of racial and ethnic backgrounds, where folks got along and crime was a non-issue.

None of us were wealthy monetarily. There were educators, (back then they were called teachers) dentists, postal workers, small business owners, nurses etc. One of my favorite neighbors were the Rebisses. They were an Italian family who lived one house over from ours. It was sometimes rather difficult to decide which I enjoyed more, hanging out with my buddy Mark or enjoying Mrs. Rebisses great Italian cooking whenever I was invited, or the times I invited myself. Ours was a neighborhood of many patriots who often flew their American flags, especially between Memorial Day and Thanksgiving.

One of my most pleasant memories of those wonder years was how many of our neighbors were actually close friends who enjoyed each others company throughout the year. A most cherished memory of the old neighborhood was how many families would connect their Christmas lights in archways over their driveways. It was a spectacular sight to see many of the homes joined through beautiful lights in the spirit of Christmas.

Even our Jewish neighbors would drop by and enjoy our Christmas gatherings. Likewise they would make sure we joined them for Seder dinners. Very moving. Our neighborhood was not physically spectacular. But it was clean, comfortable, safe and stable. My belief at the time was that was how the majority of Americans lived. Turns out I was right. At that time, the bulk of American fathers, both black and white were in the home. Dads and moms both ruled the home with principles with Christian underpinning. We children were taught to respect our elders and other symbols of authority like the police, appreciate our country and were expected to achieve our best in school and in life in general.

Were we perfect? No, but because we were taught to aim high morally, ethically, and spiritually. The spiritual part kicked in later. (smile)

But as time progressed something happened and what seemed good at first has turned out to not so good after all. In fact, many things occurred that brought about a series of horrendous shifts in the ongoing function of out republic. One of the major developments was the civil rights, or what my Dad called the bastardized rights movement across America.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. began his quest for the unalienable rights of all Americans to be to recognized and honored. He firmly believed in the completed family that included both Dad, Mom and the children. I have a sneaking suspicion the Dr. King would also be firmly against the ongoing slaughter of the most innocent amongst us, unborn babies. Unfortunately, the ideals Martin Luther King espoused were gradually refocused away from unalienable rights which came from God, toward civil or bastardized right that are granted by government. It was special interest groups, not sovereign individuals that to this day most benefit most from that arrangement. When you have civil or (as my Dad said) bastardized rights, then include America’s transition from a constitutionally limited republic into a mob rule democracy things are destined for decline. Mob rule democracy places the government granted rights of the mob above the unalienable rights from God.

Dad was concerned that the corrupted civil or bastardized rights movement would help open the door to overthrowing all of the factors that had helped maintain family and national stability. So gradually, activities that were once considered immoral or wrong were gradually granted special rights status under the civil rights genre. Abortion quickly comes to mind for example. Now, groups of Americans are pitted against one another and the rights of individuals. You had Blacks against the police, homosexuals against the teachings of God the church, women against men.

Many of these groups had been brainwashed into thinking they were a collection of victims.

Combine that with several decades of government school indoctrination of American students against all that is good especially concerning the United States of America and what eventually brewed was a Caldron of madness. In more recent times in cities across America, mobs of blacks have been either fighting one another or starting riots in places like Ferguson, Missouri. And Baltimore. On St. Patrick’s Day 2015 in Cleveland after the huge annual parade, a group of black males and females converged and started beating up white citizens and out of town visitors alike. To them it was entertainment. The obvious lack of regard for civility stems from the purposeful breakdown of the black family and disregard for fathers. Also there was a taught hatred of America and possibly God himself.

My fellow Americans, let us pray for the restoration of our One Nation under God and constitutional law. We can either choose life or choose death for America. I would that we choose life.

God Bless America and May America Bless god.

Renegade Christians

Followers of Christ are coming out from behind church doors to go where the poor and forgotten live.

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Liberals DO NOT believe in Freedom For All

This past week end, I spent a lot of time outside working on my landscaping.  The long, hard winter of 2014/2015 looks to be over.  And I would just like to say thank you to Global Warming advocates who are still at a loss as to why this planets climate has not lived up to the desert like conditions promised.

I guess global warming equals record cold temperatures and record snow fall.  Well if that is what global warming is, then I will jump on board because I love living in New England and I sure don’t want another Alaska type winter to befall us.  Note the sarcasm.  But I digress.

While working in my yard this past week end, I got to see some of what makes America great.  The freedom of people to be who they want to be.  I saw people walking in shorts and tank tops. Mind you, although it is warm, to me it is far from tank top weather.

I saw folks riding their motorcycles, big ones and small ones.  Some had flags on the back.

Some were the noisy type.  Some were the fast type.  And some were the big, touring grandparent type. I saw folks taking their convertibles out for a week end joy ride probably for the first time this year.  I saw and heard the younger set with all their windows down and music blaring.  Yes, we can hear you a half mile away and you are going to kill your ears by playing music that loud. But at least in most communities, those young people have the freedom to play their music in their car as loud as they want.

And there it is.  The freedom.  I saw people enjoying their freedom.  Nobody telling them they could not walk in a tank top yet.  Nobody passing a law preventing motorcycles from being ridden at this time of year.  No overreaching ordinances telling young people that in order to be legal others cannot hear your music outside of your car at all.

Now this part of the article is for all of my Liberal friends and haters out there.  This is where I point out how hypocritical you are.  Lets take gay rights for example.  Now this is America.  As some would say, ‘Murica.  And this is the land of the free.  Which, you on the left say, means that gays have the right to live as they please.  They have a right to live in peace.  They have a right to love who they please.  They have the right to have a life just like a straight person.  To which many other Americans would agree. But then you turn the tables on everyone else.  You want laws dictating how others act and react around you.  You wish to stifle or take away the freedom and rights of others just to fit your own selfish desires.  You say you want to be free, but you want big government to dictate how we all live and interact with each other.

It would be like telling the person on the fast motorcycle that he is not allowed to go 65 mph on the highway while allowing cars to do that speed.  In other words, you are not asking for freedom.  You are asking for special privileges.  Privileges in which the rest of the population is not able to avail themselves of.  You are asking to separate the people in to classes and groups. Some classes and some groups get more freedom than others.

That kind of thought is straight out of the pages of the novel Animal Farm.  In this novel there is a passage that says, “some animals are more equal than others” which means some animals are not equal at all.

This is the same thought process used to own and keep slaves.  Blacks were not thought of as being equal to whites.  Now gays want to say that straights are not equal to gays.  And thus a straight person has no right to admonish gays in any way.  However, when you ask the question of gays should they be forced to make a T-Shirt for a Muslim that says “gays are infidels and must die” the fast and quick answer is no way.

Well if you have the right to tell a straight person they must make you a t-shirt that says “being gay is fab” then the Muslim has the right to tell the gay person to make him a t-shirt of his choosing. But in order to get around this, gays would say that what the Muslim wants is hate speech.  So you want to create a law that stops hate speech.  Even though, in this country, the Muslim is free to say what he pleases just like you and I.  But you wish to live your life of freedom by taking the rights of others away simply because you don’t like it.

This is not an issue with Muslims.  I need to say it because some of you out there would point out Muslims should not have a right to say what they say.  To which I reply with a query.  Why?  Sure I find a lot of what they say offensive.  But does that give me the right to deny his free speech rights simply because I don’t agree or like his speech? Does this mean that gays should censor straights because they don’t like the fact that some straights don’t agree with homosexuality?  Does it mean that we force the motorcycle to go only 55 instead of 65 because they are not wrapped in a steal cage?

Who decides who gets special rights and who gets their rights denied?  The point is when you deny someone their rights, you are most likely starting down that slippery road process of denying your own rights.  And frankly that makes us all less free.  And less freedom has no place in ‘Murica.