Church Assembly – KCACM http://www.kcacm.org/ Sun, 26 Sep 2021 14:25:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 http://www.kcacm.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/icon-4-150x150.png Church Assembly – KCACM http://www.kcacm.org/ 32 32 COVID-19 vaccine exemptions: where are the different religions on vaccinations? http://www.kcacm.org/covid-19-vaccine-exemptions-where-are-the-different-religions-on-vaccinations/ Sun, 26 Sep 2021 13:29:50 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/covid-19-vaccine-exemptions-where-are-the-different-religions-on-vaccinations/ (WSYR) – While a significant number of Americans seek religious exemptions from COVID-19 vaccine warrants, many religious leaders say: Not with our approval. Leaders of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America said last week that while some people may have medical reasons for not receiving the vaccine, “there is no exemption in the Orthodox Church […]]]>

(WSYR) – While a significant number of Americans seek religious exemptions from COVID-19 vaccine warrants, many religious leaders say: Not with our approval.

Leaders of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America said last week that while some people may have medical reasons for not receiving the vaccine, “there is no exemption in the Orthodox Church for its followers from any vaccination for religious reasons.”

What are other religious leaders saying about COVID-19 vaccines?


Catholicism

The head of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis, urged people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and said getting the vaccine is an “act of love.”

“Thanks to the grace of God and the work of many, we now have vaccines to protect us from COVID-19,” the Pope said in the video below. He went on to say that the vaccines “bring hope to end the pandemic, but only if they are available to everyone and if we work together with each other.”

Pope Francis received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in January, according to the Vatican.

There was some controversy over whether the development of vaccines made them morally acceptable according to the church. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops released a confusing statement:

Neither the Pfizer vaccine nor the Moderna vaccine involved the use of cell lines from fetal tissue taken from the body of an aborted baby at any level of conception, development or production. However, they are not completely free from any connection to abortion, as Pfizer and Moderna both used a contaminated cell line for one of their products’ confirmatory lab tests. So there is a connection, but it is relatively far away.

Some argue that if a vaccine is linked in any way to contaminated cell lines, then it is immoral to be vaccinated with them. This is an inaccurate representation of Catholic moral teaching.

Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades and Bishop Joseph F. Naumann

In March 2021, the organization questioned the moral validity of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine, however, has been developed, tested and produced with cell lines derived from abortions, which raises additional moral concerns. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has ruled that “when ethically flawless Covid-19 vaccines are not available … it is morally acceptable to receive Covid-19 vaccines that have used cell lines from aborted fetuses in their research and production process.[1] However, if one can choose from equally safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, the vaccine with the least connection to cell lines derived from abortions should be chosen. Therefore, if one has the option of choosing a vaccine, the vaccines from Pfizer or Moderna should be chosen over those from Johnson & Johnson.

Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of Fort Wayne-South Bend, chair of the Committee on Doctrine of the United States Catholic Bishops’ Conference (USCCB), and Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, Kansas, chair of the USCCB committee on pro-life activities


Judaism

Mitzvah is one of the 613 divine commandments of the Torah; a good deed or a religious precept, according to Rabbi Yehuda Shurpin. Rabbi Shurpin writes that “protecting one’s own health doesn’t just make sense, it’s actually a mitzvah. This means that even if you don’t want to do it, for whatever reason, you still have to.

The three main branches of modern Judaism include Reformation, Orthodoxy, and the Conservative. Organizations and leaders from all three branches have issued statements in favor of immunization.

The Union for Reform Judaism passed the resolution on compulsory vaccination laws in 2015. The resolution supports mandatory vaccination laws and urges congregations to educate members on “scientific evidence and Jewish values ​​in support of mandatory vaccinations.”

The Orthodox Union also issued a statement in favor of COVID-19 vaccinations:


Islam

The Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America said in a press release that there is no way to stop the pandemic besides achieving collective immunity. Collective immunity requires that a certain percentage of the population be immunized against a virus. AMJA says this can happen in two ways:

  1. Allowing the infection to spread among people without reducing it
  2. Vaccinate people against the virus

The first way is not Sharia-compliant because it endangers the lives of people, especially the weakest, which is in direct conflict with the legislator’s intention to preserve all human lives. …

The second path is vaccination, which is in accordance with Sharia law and reason.

AMJA Residents Fatwa Committee

Many Muslims who practice Islam avoid pork. The Muslim COVID-19 National Working Group said in December 2020 that the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines “contain fats, salts / buffering agents, and sugar (sucrose). Fat is not made from pork products.


Buddhism

Buddhism does not have a central authority that determines doctrine, but the Dalai Lama received his COVID-19 vaccine in India in March.

After receiving his injection, the Dalai Lama said, “These other patients should also receive this injection for greater benefit”, calling the injection “very, very useful.”


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The First Presidency, the governing body of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, urged Latter-day Saints to get vaccinated against COVID-19 in August, saying, “For personal protection against such serious infections, we urge people to be vaccinated. The available vaccines have been shown to be both safe and effective.


Christian Science

A small branch of Christianity, Christian Science published a vaccination and public health statement.

According to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, “One of the basic teachings of this denomination is that disease can be cured or prevented through targeted prayer and members will often request exemptions when available. However, there are no strict rules against vaccination and members can receive the required vaccines. “

For more than a century, our denomination has advocated respect for public health authorities and conscientious obedience to the laws of the land, including those requiring vaccination. Christian scientists report a suspected communicable disease, obey quarantines, and strive to cooperate with measures deemed necessary by public health officials. We see this as a matter of basic New Testament Golden Rule and love ethics. …

Most of our church members normally rely on prayer for healing. It is a deeply thoughtful spiritual practice and way of life that has meant a lot to us over the years. We have therefore appreciated the immunization exemptions and sought to use them conscientiously and responsibly, when granted.

On the other hand, our practice is not dogmatic. Church members are free to make their own choices about all life decisions, within the limits of the law, including whether or not to immunize. These are not decisions imposed by their church.

A Christian Science Perspective on Immunization and Public Health


Christianity

As there are many Christian denominations, not all of them have been detailed in this article. According to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, the following Christian denominations have no theological objection to vaccination:

  • Roman Catholicism
  • Eastern Orthodox
  • Oriental Orthodox
  • Amish
  • Anglican
  • Baptist
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon)
  • Congregation
  • episcopalian
  • Jehovah’s Witness (Note: this denomination first denounced vaccination, but revised this doctrine in 1952. A item in a recent issue of the church’s newsletter promotes immunization to prevent infectious disease.)
  • Lutheran
  • mennonite
  • Methodist (including African Methodist episcopal)
  • Quaker
  • pentecostal
  • Presbyterian
  • Seventh Day Adventist
  • Unitarian-Universalist

Vanderbilt University Medical Center says the following denominations have a theological objection to vaccination:

  • Dutch Reformed Congregations – This denomination has a tradition of declining vaccinations. Some members refuse vaccination on the grounds that it interferes with divine providence. However, others in the faith accept vaccination as a gift from God to be used with gratitude.
  • The faith healing denominations, including:
  • Tabernacle of Faith
  • Church of the Firstborn
  • Assembly of Faith
  • End time ministry
  • Church of Christ, scientist


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REGION CHURCH SERVICES | Daily Rome Sentinel http://www.kcacm.org/region-church-services-daily-rome-sentinel-2/ Sat, 25 Sep 2021 20:00:00 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/region-church-services-daily-rome-sentinel-2/ First Baptist, 301 W. Embargo St. 315-336-2610. Sun. 10:00 a.m. Grace Baptist (Southern Baptist), 8553 Turin Rd. 315-336-3341. Sun 11 a.m. Friendship Baptist (independent), 4964 Rome-New London Road, Rte. 49. 315-336-2963. Sun. 8:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 6 p.m. Immanuel Baptist, 1006 W. Embargo St. 315-337-4464. Sun. 10:55 a.m., 6 p.m. Baptist Missionary Mohawk (ABA), 6499 […]]]>

First Baptist, 301 W. Embargo St. 315-336-2610. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Grace Baptist (Southern Baptist), 8553 Turin Rd. 315-336-3341. Sun 11 a.m.

Friendship Baptist (independent), 4964 Rome-New London Road, Rte. 49. 315-336-2963. Sun. 8:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 6 p.m.

Immanuel Baptist, 1006 W. Embargo St. 315-337-4464. Sun. 10:55 a.m., 6 p.m.

Baptist Missionary Mohawk (ABA), 6499 Lampear Rd. 315-334-4868. Sun. 11 a.m., 6:30 p.m.

Mt. Calvary Baptist, 203, boul. E. Sun. 11:00

New Hope Baptist, 321 W. Bloomfield St. 315-337-5608. Sun. 11:00

Baptiste horizon, Rte. 365, 315-337-8651. Sun. 11 a.m., 1 p.m.

Lutheran of Saint John, 502, rue Chestnut 315-336-8090. Sat. 5:30 p.m .; Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Lutheran Bread of Life, Rome Rescue Mission, 413 E. Dominick St., 315-337-2516, Sat 10:30 am

First United Methodist, 400 N. George St. 315-336-1740. Sun. 11:00

Wesleyan Evangelical, Seiferts Corners. Sun. 11 a.m., 7 p.m. 315-245-0914.

Wesleyan, 317 W. Embargo St., 315-337-9976. Sun. 10:45 a.m.

All Saints Polish National Catholic, 801 Hickory St.
315-337-2382. Sun. 9h00

Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses (South), 6615 Potter Road, 315-337-1821. Sun. 1:00 p.m.

Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses (North), 6615 Potter Road, 315-337-3492. Sun.
9:30 a.m.

Jehovah’s Witnesses Sign Language Service, 6615 Potter Road, Sat 1:30 p.m.

Bethel Full Gospel (Pentecostal), 629 W. Thomas St. 315-336-3692. Sun. 11:00

Zion Episcopal, 140 W. Liberty St. 315-336-5170. Sun. 9h00

St. John’s Roman Catholic, 210 E. Dominick St. 315-337-0990. Sat 4:30 p.m., Sun 8, 9:30, 11.

Roman Catholic of Saint-Paul, 1807, rue Bedford 315-336-3082. Sat 4 p.m. Sun 11 a.m.

Roman Catholic of St. Peter, 200 N. James St. 315-336-5072. Sat 5. Sun. 7:30 a.m., 10 a.m., 6 p.m.

Ukrainian Catholic St. Michael, (Byzantine Rite), 131 River Street 315-735-5138. Sun. 8:30

Roman Catholic of the Transfiguration, 111 Ridge St. 315-336-1152. Novena, Mon 7:00 p.m.

Alliance of Rome (Christian / Missionary Alliance), 920 Turin 315-336-3483. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

Mission Church, 431 W. Court Street, 315-245-1073. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Church of Christ, 734 Hickory Street 315-337-2160. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Awake, Assembly of God, 5526 Rome-Taberg Road, Sun. 10:00 a.m.

First Presbyterian, 108 W. Court 315-336-1380. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Oneida Co. Christ Church, 7075 Lee Center-Taberg Rd. Sunshine. 9:30 a.m.

Salvation Army, 410 W. Dominick St. 315-336-4260. Sun. 11:00

Seventh-day Adventist, Sutliff Rd. 315-336-2918. Sat 11:00 am

Trinity United Church of Christ (Evangelical & Reformed, Congregational), 215 W. Court St. 315-336-2833. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

First Tabernacle Pentecostal Christian Center, 8086 Turin Rd. 315-203-1634. Sun. 11 a.m., 5:30 p.m.

Grace Union AME, 606 Woodland Ave. 315-339-0790. Sun. 11:00

New Testament Church, a center of charismatic education, 6772 Lampear Road. Sun. 10:30 am; Fri 7:30 p.m .; Sat 7:00 p.m.

Christian Center of Rome, non-denominational, 315-337-3632, 7985 route de Turin, Sun 10 a.m., 6 p.m.

Life Church, non-denominational, 1110 Black River Blvd., Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Resurrection Life Church, non-denominational, 628 Floyd Ave. 315-339-6318. Sun. 8:30 am, 10:30 am

Marantha Iglesia, 620 N. Washington St., 315-336-0685. Sun. 11:30 a.m.

New Day Church, a Foursquare Gospel Church, 8060 Turin Road, 315-336-7777, Sun 10:30 am

Abiding Love Ministries, 734 Hickory St., 315-361-1507 Saturday, 1 p.m.

Redeemer 129 N. Washington St. 315-792-4748 Sunday, 10 a.m.

Kingdom Harvest Apostolic Faith, 706 N. Madison St. Sun. 11:45 a.m., 4 p.m.

Bell’s Memorial Baptist Missionary Church, 506 W. Dominick St. Sun. 11:00

St. Barnabas Mission, 412 W. Park, 315-240-0734 Sun,
10:30

River of Life Christian, 506 W. Dominick, Sun 10:00 am

AUGUSTA

Presbyterian. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

AVA

Methodist on top of a hill. Route 26 Soleil. 10:00 a.m.

BARNEVEL

Episcopal of Saint David. 315-896-2595 Sun 10:00 am

United Methodist. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Unitarian universalist. uubarneveld.org 10:00 am

World Bible Fellowship, Main St. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Center Point Christian Fellowship, 8021 Rte 12, 315-865-5111. Sun, 10:07 am; Sea.
6.30 p.m.

BARTLETT

Baptist. 315-337-4437. Sun.
9h00

VAL-BLOSSE

The Church of Christ. Sun.
10:30

BOONVILLE

United Methodist, 202 Main Street 315-942-2626. Sun. 8:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

First Presbyterian, Sun.
10:30

Saint-Joseph Catholic, 110, rue Charles 315-942-4618. Sat.
4 p.m. Sun 9:30 a.m.

Trinity Episcopal, 124, rue Schuyler 315-942-4726 Sun 9:30 a.m.

First Baptist, 325 Post St. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Abundant Life Fellowship, Route 12, Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Christian and Missionary Alliance, Potato Hill Road. 315-942-2239. Sun. 10:45 a.m.

CAMDEN

United Methodist. 132 Main Street, 315-245-2600. Sun. 11:00

Queen’s Village Bible, Sun.
11 a.m., 6 p.m.

Roman Catholic of St. John. Sat 4 pm, Sun 9 am; Wed Thursday. Fri 9:00 am

Episcopal of the Trinity. Sun.
11:00

Wesleyan, 101 Main Street, Sun 8am, 10:15 am

Assembly of the Living Hope of God, 2488 State Route 69, 315-245-2214. Sun. 10:05 am

Baptist servants, 10570 Route 13, 315-245-5290. Sun.
11 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Abundant Living Community, 86 Mexico Street 315-245-4957. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

Hillsboro Baptist, Corner of Hillsboro and Steam Mill Road, Sun 10:30 am

CHADWICKS

Episcopal Church of St. George, 9389 Elm Street, Chadwicks,
Sun. 10:00 a.m.

CLARK MILLS

United Methodist, 315-853-5828. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

Church of the Annunciation, 315-853-6138. Sat 4:00 p.m .; Sun. 9:30 am; Communion
Mon-Wed 7:45 am, Fri 8:00 am

CLEVELAND

North Shore Assembly of God, St. Mary’s Church, Lake St., 315-675-3567. Sun. 10:45 a.m.

United Methodist, 315-675-8824. Sunday, 9 a.m.

CLINTON

Roman Catholic of Sainte-Marie, 315-853-2935. Sat 5:15 p.m. Sun 8 a.m., 10:30 a.m.

Presbyterian Stone Church, 8 S. Park Row, Sun 10:30 am

CONSTABLEVILLE

Episcopal of Saint Paul. Sat.
4:00 p.m.

Roman Catholic of St. Mary. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

DURHAMVILLE

Abounding Love Fellowship, 5368 Main St. in Lafayette St. 315-280-0550. Sun. 10h; Wed 7:00 p.m.

Baptiste (ABC), 5294 Church Street, 315-363-3753, Sun 10:00 am

FLORENCE

United Methodist. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

FLOYD

United Methodist, 8398 New Floyd Road, 315-865-4027. Sun. 9h00

Christ Church (Reformed Presbyterian), 8470 New Floyd Road, 11 a.m.

FORESTPORT

First Presbyterian. Sun. 9:15 a.m.

St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, 12000 River St., Sun. 8h00

GREIG

United Methodist.
315-853-8258. Sun. 11:00

HAWKINSVILLE

United Methodist,
315-942-2626. Sun. 9h00

HECLA

Union, 315-829-2375.
Sun. 10:30

DUTCH PATENT

First Presbyterian,
315-865-5754. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Roman Catholic St. Leo’s and St. Ann’s, Elm St. Sat. 4 p.m. Sun 8:45 a.m.

JEWEL

Chapel of jewelry. Sun. 11:00

KIRKLAND

Society of Friends (Quakers). 3001 Austin Road, Kirkland. 315-853-3035. Sun. 10:30

LAIRDSVILLE

United Methodist, Rte. 5. 315-853-3340. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

LEE

Delta United Methodist, 6285 Hawkins Corners Road, 315-336-1940. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

United Methodist, Route 69, Sun. 9:15 a.m.

New Beginnings Community Church, (non-denominational), 5967 Sleepy Hollow Rd. 315-336-0261. Sun 10am

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 8650 route de Turin, Sunday, 10 a.m.

LEE CENTER

United Methodist. 5531 Lee Center-Taberg Road.
315-337-3358. Sun. 11:00

Roman Catholic of St. Joseph. Sat 6 p.m. Sun 9 a.m.

LOWELL

United Methodist, 5840
Lowell Road. 315-510-3464. Sun. 9:30 a.m.

FALLS OF LYON

Forest Presbyterian, 4109 Center Street, 10 a.m.

St. John’s, 5838 McAlpine Street, Sat 7:00 p.m.

MARCIE

Maynard Methodist, 9626 Maynard Drive, 315-733-4769, Sun 8:30 am

Marcy Community, 6320 State Route 291. Sun 10:00 am

Pilgrim Holiness, 315-736-4019, Cavanaugh and Kennedy Roads, Sun 11:00 am

McCONNELLSVILLE

Community (United Church of Christ), 315-245-5083.
Sun. 9h00

NEW HARTFORD

Saint-Georges Antiochien
Orthodox, 350 Higby Road,
315-292-6682, Sun 10:00 am

NEW LONDON

New London Methodist. Sun. 9h00

NORTH WEST

United Methodist. Sat 4:00 p.m.

ONEIDA

Oneida Baptist, 242 Main Street, Sun 10:00 am

First Presbyterian, 304 Broad St. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Episcopal of St. John,
341 Main Street, 315-363-1940.
Sun. 9:30 a.m.

St. Paul’s United Methodist, 551 Sayles St. 315-363-1921. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Full Gospel Assembly, 350 Maple Street 315-280-0393.
Sun. 10:30

ONEIDA CASTLE

Cochran Memorial, 11 State St. 365, 10 a.m.

ORISKANY

Waterbury Memorial Presbyterian. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

OSCEOLA

Baptist of the Valley. Sun.
10:30

Congregationalist. Sun.
10:30

LAKE OF THE OTTERS

Sainte Marie des Neiges, closed. Reopening on September 1, 2019

ROCK POINT

United Methodist. Sun.
8:30

PORT LEYDE

Episcopal of Saint Mark. Sun.
10:00 a.m.

Baptist Bible Community,
11:00

St. Martin’s, 7108 N. St., Sun 8:15 am

PERSPECTIVE

Park Methodist. Sun. 9h00

Baptist of Bethel. Sun. 11 a.m., 6:30 p.m.

REDFIELD

Grace scholarship,
315-387-3025 Sun 10:45 a.m.

REMSEN

First United Methodist. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

SHERRILL

Gethsemane, 320 Park St. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Catholic of Saint Helena, 210 Primo Ave., Sun. 10:45 a.m.

Plymouth Alliance Church, 169 Kinsley Street, 315-363-5642. Sun. 10:30

SOUTH BAY

Grace Lutheran Church, 3965 Carter Road (corner route 13), Sun 10:00 am

SOUTH TRENTON

Presbyterian, Sun 10:00 am

STEUBEN

United Methodist. Sun.
9h00

STITTVILLE

United Methodist, 9066 Main St., 315-865-5722. Sun 11 a.m.

Redemptive Love Fellowship, 9011 Route 365. 315-865-5772. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

TABERG

Roman Catholic of St. Patrick. Sat 5:15 p.m. Sun 7:30 a.m., 10 a.m.

United Methodist. Sun.
10:00 a.m.

UTICA

Beit Shalom, (Messianic Jewish Congregation), 49 Franklin Square, Utica. 315-732-3962. Fri 7:30 p.m.

VERNON

Holy Family Roman Catholic. Sun. 9h00

Shiloh Bible Church, 5204 W. Seneca St. (Rt. 5), 315-953-4298, Sun 10:30 am

Baptist. Sun. 11:00

United Methodist. Sun.
10:15 a.m.

VERNON CENTER

United Methodist, 5815 Youngs Road, 315-225-0290. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

VERONA

United Methodist, Sun. 9h00

Lutheran Saint-Pierre, 4897 Old Oneida Road, 315-363-5211. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Baptist of the seventh day,
6775 Blackmans Corners Road, 315-339-9854 Sat 10:00 am

The Chapel, 6775 Blackmans Corners Road, Sun 9 a.m. (from June 6)

First Presbyterian, 10 a.m.

VERONA BEACH

Baptiste de la Bourse, rue Oneida 315-245-2529. Sun. 11 a.m., 6 p.m.

VIENNA

United Methodist,
2410 Route 49. Sunshine. 9h00

Seventh Day Adventist,
7812 Rte 13.315-245-1219.
Sat 11:00 am

WESTERNVILLE

Presbyterian. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

WEST COUNTRIES

United Methodist.
315-853-4515. Sun. 11:15 a.m.

Living Hope Church of the Nazarene, Fire Station, Sun 11:00 am

WEST LEYDE

Roman Catholic of St. Mary. 315-942-2595. Sat 4:00 p.m.

Reform. Sun. 10:00 a.m.

WHITESBORO

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Clark Mills Rd. Sunshine. 10 a.m., 11:20 a.m.,
12:20

Presbyterian, Elm and Main Sts. 315-736-5497. Sun. 10:00 a.m.


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Court Verdict Encourages Indian Church, But Challenges Remain | Catholic National Register http://www.kcacm.org/court-verdict-encourages-indian-church-but-challenges-remain-catholic-national-register/ Fri, 24 Sep 2021 18:10:40 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/court-verdict-encourages-indian-church-but-challenges-remain-catholic-national-register/ KERALA, India – The Church in India is excited about an unprecedented justice verdict in the state of Kerala, categorically declaring that “unborn children have the right to life”. But she has a heavy job to do in spreading this pro-life message in a country where millions of selective abortions of unborn girls take place […]]]>

KERALA, India – The Church in India is excited about an unprecedented justice verdict in the state of Kerala, categorically declaring that “unborn children have the right to life”.

But she has a heavy job to do in spreading this pro-life message in a country where millions of selective abortions of unborn girls take place and where the Church itself is “alarmed” by the low birth rate of. his flock, especially in the Christian heartland of the southern state of Kerala.

“The verdict of the Kerala High Court is extremely positive, although abortion as such is legalized in India,” said Archbishop Thomas Mar Koorilos, chairman of the Doctrinal Commission of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India. India (CBCI).

“We are happy with this verdict. The Church represents the unborn child, that he must be cared for and cared for, ”Archbishop Koorilos, who heads the Syro-Malankara rite Archdiocese of Thiruvalla, told the Register on September 18.

Archbishop Koorilos’ reaction arose out of the emphatic verdict of the High Court of Kerala (high courts are the highest courts in Indian states), responding to a petition from a 31 weeks pregnant woman seeking an abortion who claimed that her unborn child had a deformity.

As abortion beyond 24 weeks of pregnancy is not allowed in India except in cases of significant fetal malformations, the court set up a medical commission which reported that the malformation of the unborn child was born. was okay and the pregnancy was safe for the mother.

In a country where hundreds of thousands of female feticides are practiced despite laws designed to prevent them, the rare categorical verdict in Kerala affirming the unborn child’s right to life has been hailed.

“We welcome the judgment of the High Court of Kerala which protects the right of the unborn child,” said Tehmina Arora, director of the Indian branch of Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF).

“We are encouraged by this judgment that every child has the right to life. Unfortunately, too often the unborn child is vulnerable even in its mother’s womb, ”said Arora, a lawyer at the Federal Supreme Court of India.

ADF is leading a campaign against endemic female feticide and for the protection of girls called Endangered Girls. It highlights how gender-selective abortion devastates the lives, not only of the unborn girl and the mother, but also of Indian society as a whole.

The 2018 “Economic Survey” of India recognized that 63 million women have disappeared in India in five decades due to gender-selective abortion rooted in deep-rooted prejudices against girls. The study also pointed out that 21 million girls remain unwanted in India, The Washington Post reported.

“This verdict gives us a boost,” said Abraham Jacob, a Catholic doctor from Kerala.

“I have not come across such a strong verdict confirming the baby’s right to life in the womb,” said Jacob, who has been involved in pro-life activities and awareness programs for three decades.

Indian abortion law

The existing legal provision against abortion under the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act of 1971 lacks force, Jacob said. Under the legislation, by which India legalized abortion, any doctor could approve the abortion, even including the excuse that a “contraceptive failed,” he noted.

“By law, a pregnancy can be terminated for up to 20 weeks by a married woman if the contraceptive method or device fails. The bill allows unmarried women to also terminate a pregnancy for this reason ”, specifies the law.

In March, the Indian Parliament amended the MTP legislation, further liberalizing abortion standards. Under the 1971 law, approval of abortion within 12 weeks of conception required the advice of a doctor and two doctors for 12 to 20 weeks. However, in accordance with the amended version MTP passed in March 2021, abortion can be performed on the advice of a doctor for up to 20 weeks and two doctors for cases between 20 and 24 weeks.

The amendment also introduced a provision for the establishment of state-level medical boards to decide whether a pregnancy can be terminated after 24 weeks in the event of significant fetal abnormalities. It was in such a case that the High Court of Kerala delivered a categorical verdict affirming the right to life of the unborn child.

“Normally, verdicts on abortion requests only go one way. But I am delighted that the tribunal here has approved what the Church teaches. It is unique. Our people should be made aware of this historic verdict and spread the message, ”said Jacob, who runs pro-life classes statewide.

Encourage a pro-life culture

“We are extremely pleased that the court has rendered such a clear verdict confirming the unborn child’s right to life,” Father Thomas Vadakkel, secretary of the CBCI Doctrinal Commission, told the Register.

The court verdict, he said, is “a powerful tool for the Church in the campaign against abortion.”

“We will definitely incorporate it into youth outreach programs, colleges, and marriage preparation classes.”

On the issue of the low birth rate among Christians, especially in the Christian heart of Kerala, even though the local Church remains vocal about abortion and other pro-life concerns, Father Vadakkel said: “It is a challenge that we must take up. “

The assembly at the beginning of August of the Council of Catholic Bishops of Kerala had expressed its “concern” at the drop in the birth rate and the low growth rate of Christians, compared to Hindus and Muslims in the state.

Professor of theology at the Apostolic Seminary of St. Thomas in Kottayam, Father Vadakkel enumerated several factors at the origin of this “alarming situation”, in particular an increase in the number of single Catholics, the migration of Catholics for work, the lack of interest in the education of children in certain young couples. , and friction between couples in the early stages of their marriage.

However, Vincentian Father Robert Chavarananickal, who is leading a campaign promoting openness to children with the slogan “More Children, More Blessing,” says some Church programs are also inadvertently contributing to the problem among Catholics.

“The Church has set up a well organized system [mandatory] marriage preparation course. The emphasis here is on NFP (natural family planning) against [artificial] contraceptive options. In the process, the message they get is to avoid children, ”said the priest, who organizes special retreats and prayers focused on the unborn child.

Although some dioceses have started supporting families with four or more children, Father Chavarananickal suggested that the Church announce a broader policy to ensure concrete support for large families, given the economic pressures.

“We are indirectly promoting a utilitarian culture among the young couple – how to avoid pregnancy and have fewer children to avoid the financial burden,” he said. “The Church must take a critical look at the content of marriage preparation courses. “


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Meet the de facto ambassadors who fuel Riverside’s creative economy http://www.kcacm.org/meet-the-de-facto-ambassadors-who-fuel-riversides-creative-economy/ Fri, 24 Sep 2021 02:03:36 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/meet-the-de-facto-ambassadors-who-fuel-riversides-creative-economy/ Posted: 23/09/2021 Original mural by Goeff Gouveia, commissioned by Sandals Church for the town of Riverside, on the sidewalk of Bobby Bonds Skatepark. Courtesy of Goeff Gouveia. Geoff gouvia, a Riverside-born artist whose works include a huge mural at the Bobby Bonds Skatepark, is fed up with people saying, “That’s cool for Riverside.” That’s because […]]]>

Posted: 23/09/2021

Original mural by Goeff Gouveia, commissioned by Sandals Church for the town of Riverside, on the sidewalk of Bobby Bonds Skatepark. Courtesy of Goeff Gouveia.

Geoff gouvia, a Riverside-born artist whose works include a huge mural at the Bobby Bonds Skatepark, is fed up with people saying, “That’s cool for Riverside.” That’s because having a base in Riverside hasn’t stopped Gouveia from working with big brands like Adidas, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, and Facebook. In fact, he sees it as an advantage.

“I can deploy my capital creatively by renting office space or hiring because the cost of living is lower here,” Gouveia said. “The internet has made it possible for artists to be based in smaller markets and to continue to thrive in commerce. It gives us permission to stay and make the city even better. ”

Gouveia is certainly doing her part in creating stunning artwork across Riverside. The current goals are football, culture and employment of local students.

Gouveia is certainly doing her part in creating stunning artwork across Riverside. The current goals are football, culture and employment of local students.

“Art can influence the way people see a business. It becomes a vehicle for dialogue and change, ”said Margery Haupt, director of artistic and cultural affairs for the city of Riverside. “Supporting Creative Ambassadors is essential for the growth and improvement of our wider regional economy. “

Gouveia is in good company with entrepreneurs Miguel and Grace Manzo, owners of Manzo press studio. The clothing design and embellishment business started in Miguel’s bedroom and parents’ garage eight years ago.

“Growing up in Riverside shaped my passion for the arts by osmosis,” said Miguel Manzo.

In 2017, shortly after the arrival of Grace Manzo, the dynamic duo opened their first location. Four years later, they expanded to become an 1,800 square foot industrial warehouse. The natives of Riverside have grown their businesses to help other businesses thrive. “It’s exciting for us to provide a service that elevates the brand of a business or organization,” said Miguel Manzo.

The couple love that Riverside is full of free or low-cost resources to help businesses thrive. They experienced it firsthand when the city accepted Manzo Press Studio into its Small Business Support Series, a three-month boot camp to learn marketing, sales, operations, customer service and finance. . They are now paying it forward by offering internships and part-time jobs to students.

Owners Grace and Miguel Manzo at the new Manzo Press Studio. Courtesy of Manzo Press Studio.

Another influential ambassador is Justin Hudson. While attending Martin Luther King High School, he and his friends gave themselves titles. “I was the president of Riverside,” Hudson said.

Hudson’s pride in his hometown eventually became a lifelong mission to raise awareness of the Inland Empire with the launch of his clothing line 1Love, abbreviation of “one love Inland Empire”. In eight years, the company has grown from a booth at Artswalk to multiple physical locations and deals with Champs and Foot Locker.

“It’s crazy how the stores where I spent all my money as a kid are now associating with us,” said Hudson.

Hudson calls customers ‘family members’ who feature in some 1LoveIE drawings. Courtesy of 1LoveIE.

Hudson (second from right) in Sacramento with his mother (far left), Caucus member Sabrina Cervantes and videographer at the annual California Small Business Day celebration. Courtesy of 1LoveIE.

1Love was appointed 60e The 2021 Assembly District Small Business of the Year and Riverside Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson donned the clothes when she was sworn in. 1LoveIE gives back frequently through volunteerism and donations, such as their annual shoe donation for youth in foster care.

“We have created a real culture, a community,” said Hudson. “The heart of Riverside’s creative economy. “

For more information on artist Geoff Gouveia, visit www.geoffgouveia.com.

For more information on Manzo Press Studio, visit www.manzopressstudio.com.

For more information on 1LoveIE, visit www.1loveie.com.


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Mitsotakis’ visit to Ground Zero church canceled http://www.kcacm.org/mitsotakis-visit-to-ground-zero-church-canceled/ Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:51:16 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/mitsotakis-visit-to-ground-zero-church-canceled/ A visit by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas at Ground Zero in New York City, which was due to take place on Friday, has been canceled. The Prime Minister, who is in New York to attend the 76th United Nations General Assembly, was to be guided through the […]]]>

A visit by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas at Ground Zero in New York City, which was due to take place on Friday, has been canceled.

The Prime Minister, who is in New York to attend the 76th United Nations General Assembly, was to be guided through the structure by the Greek Orthodox Archbishop of America Elpidophoros.

However, it emerged that the Prime Minister will meet with the leadership of the Wall Street Journal instead.

The Prime Minister’s change of itinerary comes after the government criticized Elpidophoros for attending an official Turkish-hosted event attended by Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar in New York.

“We were irritated by the actions of the Archbishop. The Greek government is expressing its dissatisfaction, ”government spokesman Υiannis Oikonomou said on Thursday to a relevant question at a press conference.

During the event, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan inaugurated the Turkish House, or Turkevi Center, which will house the Turkish representation to the United Nations as well as delegates from Turkish-occupied northern Cyprus, on the sidelines of the Assembly. General of the United Nations. . The event was also attended by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

Evangelos Venizelos, former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, said the government’s criticism of Elpidophoros was “deeply anhistoric” and “short-sighted”.

Crushed by the collapsing south tower, the original Saint Nicholas has been replaced by a glass dome-shaped shrine designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava. Elpidophoros is due to unveil the building on November 2 in a ceremony attended by Patriarch Vartholomaios – conditions permitting – while the church is expected to resume services as usual next year.


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Charred remains of Jamestown church burnt down in 1676 Discovery of Bacon’s rebellion http://www.kcacm.org/charred-remains-of-jamestown-church-burnt-down-in-1676-discovery-of-bacons-rebellion/ Wed, 22 Sep 2021 23:03:49 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/charred-remains-of-jamestown-church-burnt-down-in-1676-discovery-of-bacons-rebellion/ Jamestown was the first successful English colony in the modern United States and set the confrontational tone for the future: a place that mixed idealism over democracy and freedom with slavery and conflict with Indians. English settlers had tried and failed to settle here before, most infamously in Roanoke, but in April 1607 they finally […]]]>

Jamestown was the first successful English colony in the modern United States and set the confrontational tone for the future: a place that mixed idealism over democracy and freedom with slavery and conflict with Indians.

English settlers had tried and failed to settle here before, most infamously in Roanoke, but in April 1607 they finally gained a foothold which overcame famine and drought in its first few months to become permanent.

It was named after King James I, the English King, and the first settlers came aboard three ships on a four-month voyage that began in 1606.

They were greeted by the Indians with dancing and tobacco, but by the end of 1607 up to two-thirds of the English had died thanks to attacks from Indians who had turned hostile and the settlers arrived too late to plant crops. – and anyway, too many were gentlemen who lacked practical skills.

Past of Virginia: a painting suggesting how Jamestown was in the early 1600s, when it was the first successful English settlement

The local Indians were ruled by Powhatan, and his daughter Pocahontas would become a key part of the story, when Smith was captured in late 1607 by one of her father’s parents.

Smith was later to tell Queen Anne that she had intervened to prevent her brains from being beaten and that she “risked having her brains beaten to save mine”, ensuring her safe release and return. in Jamestown.

In 1608 England sent supplies, gold and most importantly skilled laborers and slowly the colony began to prosper.

But then came the “Famine Time” of 1609 and 1610 – with scientific evidence now showing evidence of cannibalism among the settlers.

Also in 1609, settlers captured Pocahontas and detained her for a year; she learned English and converted to Christianity.

By June 1610 there were only 60 survivors and the ships were ready to take them to safety in Bermuda when another fleet arrived with supplies and men.

Among them was John Rolfe, who brought with him Trinidadian tobacco seeds which he began to cultivate upstream from Jamestown.

He became prosperous and wealthy and in 1614 married Pocahontas, the first recorded marriage between settlers and Indians, and they had a son the following year.

Eight years known as the Peace of Pocahontas followed – but not for the couple, who traveled to England in 1616; when they planned to return in March 1617, they reached Gravesend, Kent, just outside London, where Pocahontas died. John and their son returned to Virginia and prospered; they still have descendants in the United States.

By 1619 the colony was thriving and the ideals of democracy and religious freedom were proclaimed, which led to the founding of the General Assembly in July 1619.

The assembly was formed after the colonies introduced private property rights – which included the right to own slaves – and established that English common law was the law of the land.

Contested story: a woodcut showing the kidnapping of Pocahontas, the Indian princess who married John Smith in Jamestown before being taken to England and dying

Contested story: a woodcut showing the kidnapping of Pocahontas, the Indian princess who married John Smith in Jamestown before being taken to England and dying

The assembly, in the bourgeois house, was’to establish an equal and uniform government throughout Virginia ‘and provide’just laws to guide and govern happily the people who dwell there, ”but only free men of English descent had the right to vote.

The settlers then included Poles – who went to court and also launched the continent’s first strike for equal voting rights – and English indentured servants, who could not vote.

But a new group of people have also arrived – and not by choice.

In the Caribbean, English pirates seized captive Africans taken into slavery in the Spanish colonies and brought about 20 of them to Jamestown – where they suffered the same fate of slavery.

In 1622, the Indians led by Powhatan decided to try to eliminate the colony, thus ending the peace, and although Jamestown survived, its outposts did not survive.

Then in 1624, it became a direct royal possession, and continued to grow, today the official capital of the colony of Virginia.

She survived the Indian wars and in 1644 imposed a peace treaty on the conquered Indians which placed them in a reserve, the first on the continent.

In 1676, Virginia was very successful – but torn by class strife, leading to Bacon’s rebellion, as poorer western frontier men, indentured white servants, and African slaves rose up under the leadership. of colonist Nathaniel Bacon against the aristocratic masters, burning Jamestown to the ground.

They also tried to expel all Native Americans from Virginia; this rebellion faltered with Bacon’s death, but slavery became more clearly racial thereafter.

Jamestown’s end as the capital came when the state house accidentally burned down in 1698, causing a temporary move to WIlliamsburg, which became permanent the following year.

By the mid-1700s it was largely deserted, and although the 200th and 250th anniversaries of its founding had been marked, most of it was in ruins.

The land was widely cultivated until 1893, when its new owners donated 22 acres, including the then ruined church steeple, to the Association for the Preservation of Antiquities of Virginia.

This set the area on a path which means that today more than 1,500 acres form a national park with a live history museum and preserved remains of the settlement.


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John Orr Kinnaird, from Nottingham, died at his home on Friday 3rd September – SolancoChronicle.com http://www.kcacm.org/john-orr-kinnaird-from-nottingham-died-at-his-home-on-friday-3rd-september-solancochronicle-com/ Wed, 22 Sep 2021 11:44:58 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/john-orr-kinnaird-from-nottingham-died-at-his-home-on-friday-3rd-september-solancochronicle-com/ John Orr Kinnaird of Nottingham, Pa., Died at his home of natural causes on September 3, 2021. Mr Kinnaird’s death followed shortly after the death of his 60-year-old wife, Bertha Lloyd Hunt, on June 2. Mr Kinnaird received home care in his final months and was surrounded by his family in his final days. Mr. […]]]>

John Orr Kinnaird of Nottingham, Pa., Died at his home of natural causes on September 3, 2021. Mr Kinnaird’s death followed shortly after the death of his 60-year-old wife, Bertha Lloyd Hunt, on June 2.
Mr Kinnaird received home care in his final months and was surrounded by his family in his final days.
Mr. Kinnaird was born in Brookville, Pennsylvania, to Malissa Knappenberger and Malcolm Kinnaird.
He was a graduate of Milton Hershey School in central Pennsylvania and the General Motors Institute. In the 1950s, John was specially selected for a one-time project in the Sea Bees and served in Rhode Island. Returning to civilian life, he met his beloved wife, Bertha Lloyd Hunt, and they were married on November 25, 1960. In 1968, John moved his growing family to Nottingham, Pennsylvania. John spent most of his engineering career with the Sun Oil Company. He retired as a project lead engineer in 1992.


Mr. Kinnaird’s life has been devoted to serving the Church of God, raising his family and looking after his farm. He was the elder in power in the Presbyterian Orthodox Church and the first lay moderator of the Presbyterian Orthodox General Assembly in 1987. He was instrumental in the development of communication systems and speech synthesizers for non-verbal people like his son John. He raised his children in the love and service of God, all of which carry on his tradition of serving as leaders and teachers in their own churches. He spent decades creating his farm, Ebeneezer Acres, as a retreat for downtown churches, various ministries, and his friends and family.
Mr. Kinnaird is predeceased by his wife Bertha, son John, brothers Bill and Lee and sister Lois. Mr Kinnaird is survived by his daughter Malissa with husband Clint Files, daughter Deborah with husband James Perry, son Malcolm with wife Justine Ryba and son David with wife Rachael Barker. He is also survived by 12 grandchildren and their spouses: John Files, Thompson Files, Hunt Kinnaird, Katharine Perry, Addie Anderson, Blair Files, Grace Kinnaird, John Perry, Robert Kinnaird, James Perry, Finley Kinnaird and Drew Kinnaird. He is also mourned by the many friends and family who have known him as Uncle John.
Mr. Kinnaird’s Memorial will be held at 11:30 am September 25 at Bethany Presbyterian Church, 2483 Baltimore Pike, Oxford, PA, 19363. In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia. Further information is available on the Collins Funeral Home website at ecolinsfuneralhome.com.


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Billionaires soaring into space attract red eyes from UN chief http://www.kcacm.org/billionaires-soaring-into-space-attract-red-eyes-from-un-chief/ Tue, 21 Sep 2021 16:54:04 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/billionaires-soaring-into-space-attract-red-eyes-from-un-chief/ Space, we have a problem of fairness. When three billionaires exploded into space this summer, they did more than escape Earth’s surly bonds, they helped spread “a disease of mistrust” plaguing a world too hungry, the world said on Tuesday. United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to other world leaders. In his opening address to the […]]]>

Space, we have a problem of fairness.

When three billionaires exploded into space this summer, they did more than escape Earth’s surly bonds, they helped spread “a disease of mistrust” plaguing a world too hungry, the world said on Tuesday. United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to other world leaders.

In his opening address to the General Assembly, a grim Guterres pointed to the rift between the rich and the poor with “billionaires who travel in space while millions go hungry on Earth”.

In July, billionaires Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos soared into space aboard private rockets built by their companies, catching the world’s attention on their short trips that were not put into orbit. The two are banking on the space tourism of their fellow space fans with big wallets.

After returning to Earth, 71-year-old Branson sprayed GH Mumm champagne on his crew and then blew it from the bottle.


Billionaire Jared Isaacman led the first fully private orbital mission that came down on Saturday after three days in orbit. Its flight was on a Dragon capsule and a Space X rocket built by space-obsessed fourth billionaire Elon Musk. Unlike the other two missions, Isaacman’s ride raised over $ 200 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, including $ 100 million from Isaacman and $ 50 million from Musk.

Guterres grouped billionaire space jumps with the illnesses of desperation, corruption, restriction of personal freedoms and “when parents see a future for their children that seems even darker than today’s struggles. “.

After Branson and Bezos’ space flights and revelations that Bezos, the world’s richest man, paid no federal income taxes in 2007 and 2011, critics called for taxing billionaires, with some wanting tax them outside the 10-digit income level. So far, these proposals, unlike billionaires, have not taken off.


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Wilma Lee Edwards | Obituary http://www.kcacm.org/wilma-lee-edwards-obituary/ Tue, 21 Sep 2021 05:00:00 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/wilma-lee-edwards-obituary/ DeLAND – Wilma Lee Edwards, 88, of Deland died at 8:55 a.m. on Sunday, September 19, 2021 at Piatt County Nursing Home, Monticello. Services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, September 25 at Calvert Funeral Home, DeLand, with Danny Roberts as officiant. Interment to follow at DeLand Cemetery, DeLand. Visitations will be from […]]]>

DeLAND – Wilma Lee Edwards, 88, of Deland died at 8:55 a.m. on Sunday, September 19, 2021 at Piatt County Nursing Home, Monticello.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, September 25 at Calvert Funeral Home, DeLand, with Danny Roberts as officiant. Interment to follow at DeLand Cemetery, DeLand. Visitations will be from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Saturday at the funeral home.

Memorials can be sent to DeLand Christian Church or the Little Galilee Christian Assembly.

Wilma was born June 1, 1933 in Wayne County, daughter of Frank and Eliza (Hallam) Harris. She married George Harvey Edwards on November 17, 1957 in Monticello.

Survivors include her husband, George Harvey Edwards of DeLand; children, Leanne (Dan) McMillen of Greenwood, Indiana, Gail Dawn Edwards of Lake Stevens, Wash., and Lisa (Julie Floyd) Edwards of Clinton; four grandchildren, Ryan, Shane, Mikaela and Isaac; and her sister, Freda Nibling from Monticello.

She was predeceased by her parents and four brothers.

Wilma was a member of the DeLand Christian Church. She was secretary of the Monticello Christian Church for 17 years and worked at the Franklin School and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Online condolences can be made to calvertmemorial.com.


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The bipartisan redistribution panel begins with partisan cards http://www.kcacm.org/the-bipartisan-redistribution-panel-begins-with-partisan-cards/ Mon, 20 Sep 2021 17:40:53 +0000 http://www.kcacm.org/the-bipartisan-redistribution-panel-begins-with-partisan-cards/ CHURCH OF THE FALLS, Virginia. – A new bipartisan redistribution commission is examining two distinctly partisan sets of maps as it sets out to draw new boundaries for Virginia General Assembly districts. Democratic and Republican map designers on Monday submitted their first drafts of new statewide maps for the commission’s review as it embarks on […]]]>

CHURCH OF THE FALLS, Virginia. – A new bipartisan redistribution commission is examining two distinctly partisan sets of maps as it sets out to draw new boundaries for Virginia General Assembly districts.

Democratic and Republican map designers on Monday submitted their first drafts of new statewide maps for the commission’s review as it embarks on the required 10-year redistribution process following the 2020 census.

Cartographers were explicitly asked not to take past election results into account when plotting districts. Yet the maps submitted by the Democratic map designer would give Democrats an advantage, while the GOP maps would do the opposite.

The Democratic cards would give Democrats a 55-45 advantage in the House of Delegates and a 21-19 advantage in the State Senate, using the 2016 presidential election – one of the most recent elections in the statewide in Virginia – as a benchmark measure of how voters vote.

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The GOP maps would create a 50-50 split in the House and give the GOP a 21-19 advantage in the State Senate, according to a PA review of data spreadsheets on proposed new districts. provided by the commission.

At Monday’s meeting, committee members spoke very little about partisan differences in maps, largely because they wanted the initial maps to be drawn without regard to partisan politics.

But they recognized that others were already looking at the cards through a partisan lens. And at some point, the cards need to reflect election results, because that data is used to ensure that black and minority voters have a fair chance to elect the candidates they want. If the lines needlessly consolidate excessive majorities of black voters into a district, or if they break black voting blocks in separate districts to dilute their strength, the lines can be challenged in court on allegations of racial gerrymandering.

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“We are trying to figure out how we are going to put these cards together,” said Greta Harris, the Democratic co-chair of the committee.

Harris and Mackenzie Babichenko, the GOP co-chair, asked the map designers to do what they can on their own to start synthesizing their disparate maps, starting with some of the less controversial areas like South Virginia. strongly republican west, where there is little difference between the cartographers’ proposals.

Voters approved the creation of the redistribution commission in a referendum last year, hoping for a process that would end the partisan and racial gerrymandering that has hampered past redistribution efforts. So far, however, partisanship has remained part of the process. The commission hired Democratic and Republican map designers because they couldn’t agree on a single, non-partisan entity.

The new process should also create more competitive districts. Whether the maps submitted to date achieve this is debatable. According to an analysis of the non-partisan Virginia Public Access Project, the number of competitive Senate districts would drop from six to seven according to the Democrat and GOP maps.

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But the number of competitive House districts would drop from 21 to 18 under the Democratic plan and from 21 to 15 under the GOP plan.

The VPAP defined a competitive district as a district with no more than 10 points of advantage for either party, again using the 2016 presidential election as a benchmark.

The committee is required by state law to submit a single deck of cards to the General Assembly by October 10 for an ascending or descending vote. If the legislature rejects the commission’s cards, the task will fall to the state Supreme Court.

All 50 states are engaged in a redistribution after the release of census data earlier this year, but Virginia is one of many doing so under newly formed commissions. Other states with new redistribution commissions also struggle to purge partisan politics of the process.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved


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