Military Atheist Group Uncomfortable With Christian Chaplains in VA Care

The Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers say it is seeking an alternative to the services provided by Christian and other faith-based chaplains in VA hospitals and hospices. The group is campaigning for more secular humanist representatives for veterans – the equivalent of chaplains for non-believers.

THE CHRISTIAN POST

As part of the atheist group’s campaign, its president released a letter written by Vietnam veteran Phil Heycock before he succumbed to cancer during an extended stay at a VA hospice.

“Currently, religious, theistic oriented Chaplains are on staff and visit patients including secular humanist atheists like myself. While the Chaplains have been friendly, according to their Christian beliefs I will be burning in hell after my demise. While I respect their right to believe as they wish, I don’t find their perspective on death comforting,” wrote Heycock.

MAAF President Jason Torpy said that Heycock expressed that he received good quality care but felt that the Christian chaplains generally available were not comforting to him as a secular humanist. “He also requested the letter be held until after his death to avoid alienating his caregivers, whom he knew to be religious,” stated Torpy.

Chaplain (Col.) Ron Crews, executive director for the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, told The Christian Post on Monday that he feels that VA chaplains are doing their best to accommodate everyone and that the MAAF is using the letter in an effort to gain public support.

Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/military-atheist-group-unhappy-with-christian-majority-chaplaincy-in-va-care-79156/#Mkgx1FRdFAKIh3gJ.99

NY’s Stony Brook University Will No Longer Observe Jewish, Christian Holidays

Stony Brook says by ending a practice that “honors only some religions,” it is aligning itself with other major research universities and leveling the playing field.

“We believe this provides two essential things – a sound educational calendar and at the same time an equal level of respect for all religions and faiths,” said Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education Charles Robbins, according to New York-based newspaper Newsday.

NY University Will No Longer Observe Jewish, Christian Holidays FULL STORY: http://www.christianpost.com/news/ny-university-will-no-longer-observe-jewish-christian-holidays-71976/

NEWS ALERT: John 3:16 Valentine’s Day Messages Confiscated by Elementary School

Second-grader Dexter Thielhelm, a student at James Madison Elementary School in Sheboygan, Wis., was sent to school on Valentine’s Day with homemade valentines to pass out to his classmates. Each valentine consisted of a plastic water bottle that was filled with heart-shaped candy and came with a note that said “Jesus Loves You” and had the text of John 3:16 printed on it.

FULL STORY: http://www.christianpost.com/news/john-316-valentines-day-messages-confiscated-by-elementary-school-69875/

Mass. Couple Sues School District to Remove ‘Under God’ From Pledge of Allegiance

Lawsuit filed by an atheist couple who believe that their children are being discriminated against because the Pledge of Allegiance – which is said every day in Mass. public school classrooms under state law – contains the phrase “under God.” … Oral arguments were heard in a Massachusetts Superior Court on Monday.

FULL STORY

Congressmen: No ‘Merry Christmas’ Emails Allowed

WASHINGTON, D.C., CP – Members of the House of Representatives have been told they are not allowed to wish their constituents “Merry Christmas” or “Happy New Year” via the mail.

The Congressional Franking Commission, which reviews congressional mail to determine if it can be paid for with tax dollars, issued a rule saying that no holiday greetings, including the traditional Christmas greeting, may be stated in official mail.

FULL STORY: http://www.christianpost.com/news/reps-banned-from-saying-merry-christmas-in-official-letters-65227/

Atheists Want Texas Courthouse Nativity Scene Down

The constitutional legality of the nativity scene displayed on the lawn at Henderson County Courthouse in east Texas being is being contested by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and atheist group based in Madison, Wis…

Full story: http://www.christianpost.com/news/is-texas-nativity-scene-ground-zero-for-the-war-on-christmas-64552/

Air Force and Operation Christmas Child Don’t Mix?

…Weinstein sees Operation Christmas Child as a threat. He says on his organization’s website that while OCC claims “to bring a bit of ‘Christmas cheer’ to children in disaster areas and war-stricken nations, this missionary program masquerading as an innocuous charity uses deliveries of toys and toiletries as a Trojan horse to sneak [Franklin] Graham’s fundamentalist Christian ministry of Jesus Christ.”

story link: http://www.christianpost.com/news/former-air-force-cadet-tries-to-get-rid-of-operation-christmas-child-60910/