Religion News 4.14.15

Charges against ‘Catholic Warrior’ dropped because she’s a Christian

Back in December, Susan Hemeryck walked into the state capitol Christmas display area, pre-apologized to two Florida Department of Law Enforcement Capitol Police officers, and then proceeded to vandalize a display erected by the Satanic Temple featuring the angel Lucifer being cast down from the heavens into hell.

But Hemeryck, like most intolerant conservative “Christians,” couldn’t handle the biblically-correct scene so she actively sought to destroy it. However, even though she is caught on camera handling the display, was caught red-handed by law enforcement officers, and freely admitted to the Associated Press that she “yanked that little devil off the fishing line” and “should have just done a better job and finished it off for good,” state prosecutors decided not to pursue the case.

As part of her defense, Hemeryck’s attorney accused the state of “basically putting an attack on Christians,” and prosecutors apparently backed down afterwards. Their lame excuse? Lack of evidence.

“The defendant is simply carrying the display,” prosecutors said in a statement. “No damages are apparent — it is simply disassembled.”

Yeah, tell that to the the Satanic Temple and all of the organizations and people who fought so hard to place the display on state grounds to symbolize true freedom of religion and religious tolerance.

I bet if a Muslim did the same thing, prosecutors would pursue the case. But since it’s a Christian, and they’re all so good and wholesome, she gets let off the hook.

Hmmm, is there a commandment about not vandalizing?

* * * *

Thanks to ‘religious and cultural reasons’, primary school students in London banned from watching solar eclipse

According to The Telegraph, students at North Primary School were only able to observe the rare eclipse from inside the school, watching it on video screens.

Located in area known as “Little India,” the community is considered diverse, but with a large a large Hindi population.

Headteacher Ivor Johnstone said the decision to bring the children inside was based on “religious and cultural” reasons

“The school made this decision when we became aware of religious and cultural concerns associated with observing an eclipse directly,” he explained. “Although we are sorry for any disappointment, pupils were still able to watch the eclipse on screens in classrooms.”

What about the students who aren’t Hindu? Are there any other Hindu rules and strictures they have to follow?

Some Hindu scriptures state that an eclipse makes believers impure, with fundamentalists saying believers must bathe immediately after an eclipse and chant the name of God to overcome the forces of darkness.

Hogwash. Like astrology, the position of the stars and planets doesn’t affect our psyche. And like astrology, there is no evidence to support such nonsense. No flavor of theist should be able to dictate to others what they can and cannot do, nor should they have any influence over anyone other than their followers. Don’t want to see an eclipse? Take your child out of school that day. Hell, I wish it was more than that. I wish theists had to offer evidence for their beliefs–most especially when they directly impact children.

Also, I have to laugh at the idea that it’s not ok to directly observe an eclipse, but viewing it indirectly is a-ok.

* * * *

 Are you ready for the world’s first gay Mormon superhero?

Independent comic book creator Brian Andersen (So Super Duper) is on a mission to make history with Stripling Warriorthe world’s first comic book series featuring a gay Mormon superhero.

The series tells the tale of Sam Shepard, a happily out and newly married gay man whose life is changed forever after he is visited by an angel from heaven on his wedding night and is summoned to be the Hand of God on Earth.

Why was he chosen? How does his sexuality impact his role as a servant of the divine? And how does the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints react when it hears a gay man has been sent on a mission from the heavens? You’ll have to read the story to find out, but until then take a look at the eight-page preview below and then head over to the Stripling Warrior KickStarter page to lend your support to making comic book history.

Religious nonsense makes much more sense in a fictional comic book world than here in the real world.

* * * *

Speaking of religious rubbish, Vatican officials apparently believe that supernatural beings walk among us:

“There are those who try to turn people into vampires and make them drink other people’s blood, or encourage them to have special sexual relations to obtain special powers,” said Professor Giuseppe Ferrari at the meeting in Rome, which heard that the number of such possessions is rising globally. “These groups are attracted by the so-called beautiful young vampires that we’ve seen so much of in recent years.”

Professor Ferrari, who heads an Italian occult watchdog, The Group on Research and Socio-Religious Information, said exorcisms should only be conducted by properly trained priests. Although the Vatican regards genuine demonic possession as rare, with many suspected cases proving to be people with mental illnesses, Pope Francis has urged dioceses to ensure that they follow Catholic law and have at least one trained exorcist each.

Swiss exorcist Father Cesare Truqui told The Independent that this week’s course, attended by exorcists, priests and lay people, was vital in order to raise awareness and hone priests’ skills. “The ministry of performing exorcism is little known among priests. It’s like training to be a journalist without knowing how to do an interview,” he said, noting that dioceses in Italy and beyond were experiencing a surge in reports of symptoms of “possession”.

* * * *

I’ve heard some say that it is harmless to believe in demons or demonic possession. These people are ignorant of the cases where people have suffered or died as a result of being “treated” for their so-called possession. Here is the latest, tragic case:

Police in Texas  are searching for the parents who starved their “demon possessed” toddler to death before fleeing to Mexico following a failed resurrection. Acting on an anonymous tip that a two-year-old had died, and that the death had not been reported.

According to the tipster, a “rising ceremony” was held on March 22 to “attempt to resurrect Victim from the dead.” When that failed, the child was wrapped in a blanket and “taken back to Mexico,” for burial, according to a search warrant.

“We don’t know if this was to try and resurrect the spirit of he child and we don’t know if this was to try and resurrect the child themselves or what exactly that service or ceremony encompasses,” said Lt. Mark Maret.

The child died inside a Balch Springs home that functioned as Congregacional Pueblo De Dios, a church that was formed in 2007. The church is affiliated with Georgia-based Pentecostal denomination, the Hispanic Conference of the Congregational Holiness Church, according to NBC.

According to a woman who knew the boy’s mother, it was believed that the child was possessed by demons — and they attempted to starve the corruption out of the little boy, who was not fed in 25 days.

Video of the “rising ceremony” shows church secretary Aracely Meza babbling incoherently while praying for the toddler’s body, which she anoints with oils. Numerous congregants were present for the ritual, yet the crime was not reported until four days after the child’s death.

Meza breaks down crying when she fails to bring the little boy back to life with magic.

Detectives have thus far been unable to locate the child’s parents or other congregants who fled to Mexico to bury the abused and neglected child. However, Meza has been charged with injury to a child by omission.

A young boy is dead now thanks to his parents’ belief in superstitious nonsense.

As an atheist, I dislike religion for reasons just like this.

Religion News 4.14.15