The Oregon Faith Report - Faith News from Oregon


After Earth Film: Scientology overkill?

May 31, 2013 --

afterearthBy Beaver State Believer,
Oregon writer,

One of the most talked about movie of the summer may turn out to be the most unexpected. I am talking about Will Smith’s After Earth. The first news to come out of this film was the early prediction that this movie will the first box office causality of summer as the weak $1 Million Thursday opening was a scare to “After Earth” promoters. Second, was the unusually harsh criticism of the movie and Will Smith’s son Jaden Smith with the Wall Street Journal saying it is among the world movies ever made (ouch?!?).  Even astronaught Buzz Aldrin jumped in by faulting the movie for not being realistic.   I haven’t seen so much overkill criticism in a movie and yet this article is being written on the first full day of release.

Most surprisingly is the film’s tie to Scientology principles being talked about among critics. Some call it propaganda because it highlights religious themes held by Scientology. Would that then make “Life of Pi” propaganda for Hinduism or “For Greater Glory” propaganda for Evangelicals? Others claimed that Twilight contained quiet references to Mormon themes. Will Smith has been a financial supporter of Scientology and it is no surprise if he would create a film that shares his own values.  The Christian movie review site, Plugged In online does not fault the film for any negative spiritual references.

One reviewer wrote about After Earth and its connection to Scientology. You can judge for yourself — Scientology overreach of critics overkill of Scientology?

Read the full article and discuss it »

Study dispells clergy sex abuse crisis



By Catholic League for Religious & Civil Rights

Bill Donohue comments on the 2012 Annual Report by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on the subject of sexual abuse:

The survey, done by an institute at Georgetown University, shows how utterly absurd it is to maintain that the Catholic Church continues to have a problem with priestly sexual abuse. Of the nearly 40,000 priests in the U.S., there were 34 allegations made by minors last year (32 priests, two deacons): six were deemed credible by law enforcement; 12 were either unfounded or unable to be proven; one was a “boundary violation”; and 15 are still being probed. Moreover, in every case brought to the attention of the bishops or heads of religious orders, the civil authorities were notified.

Not counting those of unknown status, in 88 percent of the total number of cases (independent of when they allegedly occurred), the accused priest is either deceased, has been dismissed from ministry, or has been laicized.

Read the full article and discuss it »

Jackie Robinson film 42: Do we live in a post-race society?

May 30, 2013 --

130526 P Jackie Robinson's 42.Metzger-Rick
By Paul Louis Metzger

Multnomah University Professor
New Wine Skins Ministry

I took my kids to see the movie 42 today. The movie is based on the real life story of baseball great Jackie Robinson, the first African American baseball player in the major leagues. Robinson wore the number 42 for the Dodgers. As I understand, the number 42 is the only number that has been retired for all major league baseball teams; it was retired in honor of Robinson and the values for which he stood. That doesn’t mean that racism has retired. Ongoing vigilance is key.


A few weeks ago, I was asked after preaching a sermon on justice what I believed the number one justice issue facing the American church and society is. While I cannot say that there is only one all-important justice/injustice issue, I did say that addressing racial concerns is high on the list since racialization (i.e., the impact of race on various domains) impacts so many spheres in American society today—from health care to job placement to where people live. The list goes on and on. And so the work to undo the racist policies of the past and their ongoing influence goes on and on.

Read the full article and discuss it »

Here come the tornado charity scams

May 29, 2013 --

By Oregon Better Business Bureau

In the wake of the massive tornados that touched down in Oklahoma this week, Better Business Bureau (BBB), the Washington State Attorney General’s Office (AGO) and the Secretary of State (SOS) are warning of opportunistic fraudsters. Cons follow the headlines and can easily create bogus charities under the guise of helping victims.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with all of those affected by this disaster,” said Robert W.G. Andrew, CEO of BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington. “Everyone wants to do their part to help, but without being careful a meaningful donation can easily end up in the wrong hands.”

Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson joins the BBB in cautioning donors to exercise restraint before sending money.

Read the full article and discuss it »

500 students challenged at NW Baptist event

May 28, 2013 --

By Sheila Allen
NW Baptist Convention

Students focus on tough questions during conference
Students from over 45 churches joined in worship under the leadership of Brady Toops and the Band at the 2013 student conference, sponsored by the Northwest Baptist Convention.

God can use anything for his glory, an extreme sports pro told Northwest Baptist teenagers at the April 26-27 student conference.

With approximately 500 in attendance, students were encouraged to explore hard questions about faith as they considered topics under the theme of “#realtalk,” a nod to the Twitter generation. More than 40 students professed faith in Jesus during the weekend, according to Danny Kuykendall, Northwest Baptist Convention student ministry specialist.

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Same-sex case involving ages 14,18 raises questions

May 27, 2013 --

In Florida, a case involving sexual relations between an 18 year old and a 14 year old is makign headlines. See the Today Show News Clip below.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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D-Day Landing Prayer Act in Congress again

May 26, 2013 --

capitol-congressBy Chris Long,

In honor of our veterans, past and present, Congressman Bill Johnson reintroduced the D-Day Landing Prayer Act in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill was also reintroduced in the U.S. Senate.

Ohio Christian Alliance President Chris Long stated, “We are pleased that members of Congress are as committed as we are to seeing the inclusion of this prayer, honoring those brave men and women who served us in WWII, become a permanent addition to the WWII Memorial in Washington, D.C.”

Roosevelt prayed, “Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our nation, this day have set upon a might endeavor, a struggle to preserve our republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity….”

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125th Memorial Day Mass in Portland

May 25, 2013 --

Mt. Calvary & Gethsemane Cemetery

Portland’s Archdiocesan cemeteries invite you to attend our annual Memorial Day Mass to pray for our loved ones who have been laid to rest, particularly at our Catholic Cemeteries over the past year.

Please join us for the celebration of Mass on Memorial Day Monday, May 27, 2013. Mass times are as follows:

• Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Portland … 10:00 a.m… Archbishop Alexander Sample presiding.

• Gethsemani Catholic Cemetery … 10:00 a.m. Monsignor Dennis O’Donovan presiding.

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Iron Man 3, Star Trek unkind to women

May 24, 2013 --

rnmnstrtrkwmnBy Beaver State Believer
Oregon blogger

 The latest Hollywood blockbusters Iron Man 3 & Star Trek Into Darkness, may be a grand spectacle on the silver screen but when it comes to roles for women – it is a dud.   It is no conspiracy that both films just happens to feature a leading male actor in bed with two ditzy girls — it just happens to be the low unoriginal standards Hollywood scriptwriters have for women roles. More ditsy girls are on display in Iron Man 3 during a beauty pageant.   

Iron man 3 has two main female actresses and both have scenes where they are not wearing much which seems to be a requirement for leading role women in any script.   That really leaves only one other role for an actress in the Iron Man flick where she gets to keep her clothes on (for the most part) yet her speaking role onscreen is almost nonexistent.  In Star Trek Into Darkness, you have a female scientist on the starship which would be good grades for the film if it were not for the fact that she  removes her clothes for a scene.    Interestingly, a Google Image search for “Star Trek: Into Darkness” images reveals that very undressed scene as among the top 10 search results.   It appears for moviegoers that she is best known not for what she has but what she doesn’t have.

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Vancouver charity opens way to aid tornado victims

May 23, 2013 --

Joseph Anfuso, President and Founderoktrnd1
Forward Edge International
Vancouver based charity

You’ve probably seen it all over the news.

Over the past two days, one of the largest tornadoes in U.S. history has ravaged Oklahoma. Twenty-four are already confirmed dead and hundreds of others are severely injured.

Join Forward Edge in reaching out to our fellow Americans in need of immediate help.

Read the full article and discuss it »
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