Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world. In today's edition:
Jody Brown, Allie Martin, and Rusty Pugh, Agape Press
Michael Schiavo got his wish. With the help of the courts, his wife has perished from starvation and dehydration. Terri Schiavo passed away Thursday morning just before 10:00 Eastern time. The death of the 41-year-old brain-damaged woman was not unexpected. Her doctors had predicted she would die within one to two weeks after her feeding tube was removed -- an act ordered by a Florida judge and carried out on March 18. According to news reports, Terri's parents and her siblings were at her bedside in a Pinellas Park, Florida, hospice until about ten minutes before her death. But Father Frank Pavone, a Catholic priest who has been advising Bob and Mary Schindler during the debate over their daughter's life, says Michael Schiavo's "heartless cruelty" continued to the end. The priest says family members were asked to leave before Terri passed away. Pavone says the parents asked to be with her when she died, but Terri's estranged husband, Michael, refused. And Terri's death, Pavone says, is "a killing" and an "atrocity." The founder of the American Family Association, Dr. Don Wildmon, expresses his hope that Terri's death can serve as a turning point for the Church in America. He says it is time for the Church to face reality for the future of the nation.
Terri Schiavo Dies In
Michael Foust, Baptist Press
Schiavo's case captured the nation's attention in recent weeks, as Congress and President Bush intervened in an attempt to save her life. But in the end, Schiavo's parents failed to convince federal courts to re-insert her feeding tube. It was pulled March 18 following a court order, and she died on her 13th full day without food or water. Schiavo's death by starvation and dehydration brought together both sides of the ideological spectrum. Sen. Rick Santorum, a Pennsylvania Republican and one of the nation's foremost pro-lifers, visited with her parents, as did civil rights activist Jesse Jackson, a former Democratic presidential candidate who has clashed with religious conservatives on multiple issues. President Bush said March 31 that he and First Lady Laura Bush extend their condolences to Schiavo's family. "I urge all those who honor Terri Schiavo to continue to work to build a culture of life, where all Americans are welcomed and valued and protected -- especially those who live at the mercy of others," Bush said. "The essence of civilization is that the strong have a duty to protect the weak. In cases where there are serious doubts and questions, the presumption should be in the favor of life." Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, called Schiavo's passing a "sad day for America."
Announcing...Logos Bible Software for the Macintosh
Macintosh users have asked for it (over and over again) and now it is headed your way: Logos Bible Software for the Macintosh. That's right...a version of Logos Bible Software that is native to Mac OS X. Immediate access to thousands of Bible reference titles never before available for the Macintosh. The advanced automation and convenient reports that Logos users have come to love. Logos Bible Software is built on the Libronix Digital Library System. The Libronix DLS is a very modular system built of many components. The Macintosh version will consist of shared code for the "back end" (the search engine, data file handling, etc.) and a completely new, OS X native user interface layer built from the ground up. Work on the product has already begun, and the official launch is planned for December 2005. They will be pulling back the curtain now and then for a peek in the meantime and will start taking orders as launch day approaches. The best way to keep up to date on all this is to subscribe to the http://www.logos.com/mac/#list. They are making every effort to incorporate as many features as possible from the Windows version. It will look as great, feel as familiar, and behave as well as your favorite Macintosh software.
Former Supt. Discriminated Against Teacher, Texas Jury Says
Jim Brown, Agape Press
A Texas jury has found a former school superintendent guilty of discriminating against a teacher who was denied a promotion because she refused to take her children out of Christian school. The federal jury in Dallas has found former Greenville Independent School District superintendent Herman Smith guilty of violating Karen Barrow's constitutional and parental rights, and awarded her more than $15,000 in lost wages. Smith is also forced to pay $20,000 in punitive damages for denying Barrow a promotion to assistant principal because she would not send her children to public schools. Barrow's attorney, Kelly Shackelford with Liberty Legal Institute, says the jury verdict sets an important precedent. The case arose when Smith told Barrow she had no future in the school district unless she removed her children from Christian school. Shackelford believes the verdict of the jury will make school administrators think twice about making similar statements. "This really sends a message to every superintendent or school official in the country who thinks that maybe they can use [the fact that] where somebody has their children educated against them, essentially blackmailing them in their career. That is not allowed," he offers, "and if you do that, you can get hit with punitive damages."