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Keeping up with current events and important faith and culture news can be a difficult task, which is why we’re partnering with TheBlaze to offer you a recap of this week's top stories.

Make sure you're in-the-know before you step into the pulpit this Sunday.

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The death and destruction in Nigeria isn’t slowing down. Witnesses say that extremists torched four churches Sunday—just miles from where over 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped in April.

And Nigeria isn’t the only place where violence is raging. A string of assaults against Jews in France is causing many to leave the country and move to Israel.

“Anti-Semitic incidents are an almost daily occurrence in France,” one expert said. “They are becoming more frequent and whereas the targets used to be synagogues, now there are more physical assaults on people, young religious Jews.”

In Sudan, Mariam Yehya Ibrahim, the Christian woman who was arrested for her faith last year, spoke out in an interview with CNN this week, describing the horrific prison conditions in which she gave birth to her baby daughter.

“When I was in prison I was only thinking about my children and how I was going to give birth. I was most scared of giving birth in prison,” Ibrahim said.

On the home front, did you see the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby case this week? Well, TV host Bill O’Reilly had some strong words to say about the liberal justices on the Supreme Court.

If one more liberal justice is appointed, “freedom in America will be compromised forever,” O’Reilly proclaimed. And some critics are saying that the Supreme Court’s decision on contraceptive coverage goes against women’s rights and health care, but the situation might be more complicated than that.

Plus, don’t miss the story we did on Dr. Candida Moss, a historian and professor at the University of Notre Dame, who told TheBlaze last week that she’s never encountered anything in her work that would lead her to become a nonbeliever.

“I personally haven’t found anything that makes me want to be an atheist,” Moss, a Catholic, said on TheBlaze’s Freefall podcast. “And I don’t think there’s anything to be afraid of in the study of history.”

And there have been a plethora of stories surrounding the debate over homosexuality in Christian circles. Consider that some critics are wondering whether the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is a dying denomination, as its recent embrace of gay marriage made waves.

Then, the United Methodist Church also landed in the headlines, making a controversial decision to reinstate a pastor who had previously been defrocked for presiding over his gay son’s wedding.

Some are wondering if Methodists will eventually follow the Presbyterians in embracing same-sex unions, though the jury is still out.

On the evangelical front, World Vision, a Christian humanitarian group that reversed course just a few months after announcing that they would allow Christians in homosexual marriages to work for their U.S. branch, is now reportedly asking board members to affirm a traditional stance on marriage.

And here are some of our more general news headlines:

As the debate over health care continues, some are wondering whether the White House in for another headache? Read about how another problem is simmering just under the surface of Obamacare.

And on the international front, the U.S. is sending 300 more troops to Iraq to improve security at the U.S. embassy and other places in Baghdad.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) and others testified on the U.S.-Mexico border crisis on Thursday at a House hearing held in Texas.

According to Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, “Since October, more than 50,000 unaccompanied minors have crossed into the United States from Mexico—nearly two-thirds of those crossed through the Rio Grande Valley in Texas.”

And read about how Obama told gun control advocates that they need to get as organized and well financed as the NRA if gun control measures are going to pass Congress.

Did you see that the U.S. national soccer team managed to qualify for the knock-out rounds of the World Cup? Unfortunately, they lost to Belgium in overtime in the first of those rounds, ending their World Cup run.

*We're passionate about helping you preach better every week. Did you enjoy this special news recap? Let us know if you want to see more like this? 

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Talk about it...

Dwight Wood

commented on Jul 5, 2014

This is great! There is so much happening in the news today, it is not only overwhelming but depressing to keep up on. Giving us a summary of news happenings for the week would help me to be familiar with what is going on without having to stay glued to the TV all the time! Keep it up!

Janis Hutchinson

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Yes. Please continue the news update!

Christine Callaway

commented on Jul 5, 2014

This summary is wonderful! I don't have TV and it's hard to keep up with current events only online. To be able to read a summary on Saturday as I write my sermon would be a blessing.

Gene Cobb

commented on Jul 5, 2014

News update? Interesting title......

Chris Gb

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Fantastic! More please. Very helpful indeed. The summary cuts through all the extra bits which one tends nit to remember anyhow. Thank you and well done.

Scott Hudgins

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Loved it! Keep them coming!

Diana Phillips

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Very helpful! Keep it coming! Thank you and Blessings

Daniel Lund

commented on Jul 5, 2014

great stuff - keep it coming!

Larry Baker

commented on Jul 5, 2014

I would like to see more. I especially appreciated the news about the Nigerian Church. It's easy for this to become lost in all the other U.S. headlines.

Fred Gurule

commented on Jul 5, 2014

I cAught up on a lot of news real quick. Thank you. More!

Connie Young

commented on Jul 5, 2014

I like and appreciate this current in the news section. Keep it up!

Jeff Borden

commented on Jul 5, 2014

excellent and needed.

Jerry Dvorscak

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Love the overview. Keep them coming.

Paul Barreca

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Preachers need to focus on the Word, not current events.

Dennis Cocks

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Paul, in case you haven't noticed, the current events we are witnessing were written in the Word a long time ago. It's called prophecy!

Dr T. Edward

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Absolutely keep this coming. This is an invaluable tool in keeping our messages current and relevant. I want to see more of this.

Mitchell Leonard

commented on Jul 5, 2014

Great help, Thanks

Steven Reyes

commented on Jul 6, 2014

Good effort; appreciate the synopsis. Obvious key is to keep it brief and hotlinked. One thought: it would be a lot stronger if it didn't read like a Drudge report recap. Cheers

Eunese Jones

commented on Jul 6, 2014

I like the thorough but brief overviews.

Chien Thang Uc

commented on Jul 7, 2014

Great help. Thanks.

Pete Dominguez

commented on Jul 7, 2014

Very thoughtful; easy to print off and have in the pulpit to view. Thanks for you efforts.

Kashif Chand

commented on Jul 7, 2014

I have read the situation and motivated to pray and be alert in Lord's work. Really helpful.

Jeff Thomson

commented on Jul 7, 2014

very useful

James Mullins

commented on Jul 8, 2014

very helpful

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