Johnn Hardang Newly Instated as Norwegian-Radio Pastor

Oct 25, 2002 03:00 AM EDT

(Norway)-- a radio ministry that's teaching the Bible around the world has a new pastor in place to reach Norway. Insight For Living International's Rolla Goodyear. "In January of course, we lost our Norwegian field pastor Ola Bjorland to a tragic and sudden death. We have, since that time, found a new field pastor, Johnn Hardang, and he will be starting soon, right after the first of the year and we look forward to having him on board and having him translate the English broadcast." Goodyear describes the spiritual status of the church in Norway and how Insight For Living hopes to help. "It is a country that has a lot of professing Christians, and yet I think there needs to be a great awakening there. The ministry has an opportunity to apply the Biblical text to their daily lives and live out their faith and not just profess their faith."By Pauline J.200212144N

0none,none,noneSaturday, Dec. 14, 2002 Posted: 7:01:23AM PSTCall for Ban on Muslim Dress Denounced by Church Leaders in AustraliaA suggestion was made by a member of an Australian state parliament that authorities ban Muslim women from wearing traditional dress in public in case they were hiding explosives or guns has drawn strong criticism.

"Such remarks are inconsistent with the Christian Gospel of freedom and peace," said the Rev. James Haire, president of the United Church in Australia. "We support the right of Muslim women to wear whatever clothing they feel is appropriate in accordance with their beliefs."

Suggestion for the ban came from the Rev. Fred Nile, a retired Uniting Church minister and member of the upper house of the parliament for New South Wales. Last year he drew headlines when he denounced Harry Potter books and films because they might attract children to witchcraft and Satanism. He is also well known for holding prayer meetings on the eve of Sydney's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade where participants are asked to pray for rain to disrupt the parade.

Nile said that the full-body chador, the dress used by some conservative Muslim women, could be used to conceal weapons. "It is not a fairytale, it just occurred in Moscow where six women wearing chador coverings also were carrying explosives and were prepared to blow up the theater and kill seven or eight hundred people," he said, referring to the October siege involving Chechen Muslim rebels. His statements drew more attention because it appeared, at first, that Prime Minister John Howard was supporting his statement.

There are about 300,000 Muslims in Australia, most of them of Lebanese or Turkish descent, but half of them born in Australia. Since the October bombings in Bali, security officials have raided the homes of Muslims suspected of having connections with extremist groups.

By Albert H. Lee

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