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Found 131 results

  1. The U.S. Commission in International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) sounded the alarm about the "worsening" state of affairs for religious freedom across the globe in its report for this year, the Christian News Network reported. The report, released on Wednesday last week, urges the U.S. Department of State to designate 16 more nations as Countries of Particular Concern (CPC), citing particular instances in those countries that merited their inclusion in the list. "Overall, the Commission has concluded that the state of affairs for international religious freedom is worsening in both the depth and breadth of violations," said USCIRF Chairman Thomas Reese in a statement. "The blatant assaults have become so frightening—attempted genocide, the slaughter of innocents, and wholesale destruction of places of worship—that less egregious abuses go unnoticed or at least unappreciated," he pointed out. Kristina Arriaga de Bucholz, a USCIRF member, said during a panel discussion on Wednesday in Washington D.C. that the commission "specifically name names so that those stories are lifted and people gain the strength that they need in order to continue fighting for their faith," CBN News reported. The commission urged the State Department to designate six nations—Russia, Central African Republic, Nigeria, Pakistan, Syria, and Vietnam as countries of concern. The commission blew the whistle on Russia due to worsening religious freedoms in that country, which became even more evident with the recent ban of Jehovah's Witnesses. Once again, North Korea topped the USCIRF list of countries with the most repressive regimes, noting that freedom of religion is non-existent in that communist nation. North Korea is also Number 1 on Open Doors USA's World Watch list of the top 50 Christian-persecuting countries in the world. The Commission urged both Congress and the Trump administration to continually speak up about religious freedom abuses around the world, both in public and in private meetings. "You cannot have religious freedom without the freedom of worship, the freedom of association, the freedom of expression and opinion, the freedom of assembly, protection from arbitrary arrest and detention, [and] protection from interference in home and family," the report states. Read more at
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  2. NEW YORK — For the first time, women in their early 30s are having more babies than younger moms in the United States. Health experts say the shift is due to more women waiting longer to have children and the ongoing drop in the teen birth rate. For more than three decades, women in their late 20s had the highest birth rates, but that changed last year, according to preliminary data released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The birth rate for women ages 30 to 34 was about 103 per 100,000; the rate for women ages 25 to 29 was 102 per 100,000. The CDC did not release the actual numbers of deliveries for each age group. It’s becoming more common to see older parents with kids in elementary or high school, said Bill Albert of the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. Read more:
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  3. Update on U.S. Local Design/Construction Arrangement—May 2017 video will be considered the week of May 1, 2017.
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    Here is the letter I found online: March 1, 2017 TO ALL BODIES OF ELDERS IN THE UNITED STATES BRANCH TERRITORY Re: Update on Local Design/Construction Arrangement
  4. via TheWorldNewsOrg World News
  5. Scientists at the George Washington University used a powerful genetic technique to test seafood dinners sold in six District restaurants and found 33 percent had been mislabeled -- although in most cases with species that are either closely related or considered acceptable alternatives for menu listing. Previous studies in other cities have shown widespread seafood substitution in which consumers are sold a completely different fish or sushi from the one listed. Those studies have indicated that seafood may be mislabeled as often as 26 to 87 percent of the time. And in egregious cases, an unsuspecting diner is sold an expensive Tuna that is actually a completely different species of fish, often one that is much cheaper or on the endangered species list, says Keith Crandall, PhD, director of the Computational Biology Institute at George Washington University's Milken Institute School of Public Health (Milken Institute SPH) and leader of the new study , which was published in PeerJ. Continue reading
  6. ARE THEY PREPARING FOR THE THIRD WORLD WAR? The United States has just taken a unique step in the history of humanity by launching this afternoon the mother of all bombs on Afghanistan. It is not a nuclear bomb, but it is a step to show that you can survive a nuclear war. For the first time in history, the United States has used the GBU-43 Massive Ordinance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb, a gigantic projectile weighing 10 tons, designed to destroy cave complexes and underground tunnels. The United States had lost years of world influence, being surpassed by Russia and China militarily and economically. The biblical King of the South was no longer the empire of years ago. With the launch of this bomb this afternoon, with the Syrian bombing, with the presence of a military fleet off the coast of North Korea, the king of the South is claiming his authority, power and world influence again. A serious warning has been issued to the Russian power, recognized by the slave as the king of the north years ago, that he is willing to do whatever it takes to not lose the authority that Satan has given him. Jehovah's Witnesses are the only Faith in this world, who does not believe in the future destruction of the planet. But we do not rule out the possibility of a Third World War, something that has never been seen since the days of the flood to this day. To the question of if there can be a Third World War, the slave has answered on a single occasion: "we do not know" (he does not deny it) However, we must be very careful about the announcements of fatalism: (Matthew 24: 4-6) And in reply Jesus said to them: "Be careful that no one misleads them; 5 For many will come upon my name, saying, "I am the Christ," and will mislead many. 6 You will hear of wars and reports of wars; See that they are not terrified. Because these things have to happen, but it is not yet the end The world scene has changed dramatically. 1914 is already far away and now the Jehovah's Witnesses are preparing definitively for the end of a civilization and a change of system. Jesus did not retract his words about a human channel on earth: (Matthew 24: 45-47) "Who is truly the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his household, to give them his food At the appropriate time? 46 Happy is that slave if his master, when he arrives, finds him doing so! 47 Verily I say unto you, He shall appoint him over all his goods. It has begun a countdown that only if we remain united with the authentic and discreet slave of Jehovah's Witnesses, will lead us to survive the great tribulation.
  7. via TheWorldNewsOrg World News
  8. Key West to settle religious discrimination suit by former bus driver History of theFantasy Fest
  9. The Russian Defense Ministry says the US missile strike on a Syrian airfield wasn't very effective, with only 23 out of 59 Tomahawk missiles reaching their target. The locations of the remaining 36 missiles’ impact is now unknown, the ministry added.
  10. Ed Wilson’s daughter, Judy Kriby, files his nails.
  11. Paul Wyche (is news technologies assistant for The Journal Gazette)
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    Do you still remember that beautiful, young, married JW couple ??? Clint and Withney Heichel ❤ Heartbreak for family as missing Whitey's body found hidden on mountainside after Starbucks barista, 21, disappeared on two-minute drive to work I was so down to that time... but we of sure have a see - again with her in paradise❤ What a loving Brother & Sister ! She was so popular in her congregation❤ Really a BIG loss for ALL..... but thats our bad end - time - it can strike us all ! TAKE CARE ALL MY BROTHERS & SISTERS ❤
  12. I never realized how messy this border really is.... And how very "ungreen" is cutting down all the timber across a continent. Isn't that worse than building a "wall"?
  13. LOWELL — The Congolese refugees huddled rapt around a stove in the early morning darkness. They had never used one before, and they watched in their new home Friday as a resettlement worker flipped the burners off and on. They had never used a refrigerator, either. Or seen water pass through a faucet. Or been told how to lock a door. Or adjust a thermostat. Or even how to squeeze shampoo from a tube. Twenty years in a refugee camp in Uganda will insulate a family from everyday conveniences that Americans take for granted. But here they were, bewildered and grateful — a mother, father, and five children who received a waiver from President Trump’s ban on new arrivals. “We heard no more refugees could come to America. So, for us to come to America, we are very happy,” the 43-year-old matriarch, Vanisi Uzamukunda, said through an interpreter as she held a sleepy 7-year-old. After Trump’s executive order last week barred new refugees for 120 days, the family worried whether this day would ever happen. But they were allowed entry because government officials determined that a delay in their scheduled journey would have caused significant hardship, resettlement officials said. Hardship has been a constant. Their lives were shattered two decades ago when the parents fled unending violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo. But here was a fresh start only a 28-hour, continent-hopping odyssey away from their home in Uganda. The family landed late Thursday night in Manchester, N.H., and then were ferried by resettlement workers to a two-floor apartment in Lowell. But even that simple drive showed the chasm between their former life and the one unfolding before them. They did not know how to open the car doors, or how to fasten a seat belt. And when they finally stepped out of the cars into 20-degree temperatures, they saw snow for the first time. “Now that we are in Lowell, this is our destination. We are finished,” said the oldest child, 20-year-old Nyirakabanza Muhawenimana, who took the lead in questioning workers from the International Institute of New England, the resettlement agency. She asked whether the family could wash clothes in the tub. No, take them to a laundromat, replied case manager Sabyne Denaud, who emigrated from Haiti. And so it went: Here is where the trash goes, make sure you lock the doors at night, do not let the children out alone, and call 911 on the apartment phone if there is an emergency. “This is the first time they have lived in a house,” said Suad Mansour, a Lowell High School teacher who was one of four people to greet the family at the airport. Suad Mansour explained shampoo to Nyirakabanza, 20, and her family at their new home in Lowell. Mansour, who immigrated to the United States from Jordan, led the family on an initial tour of the apartment about 1 a.m. Friday. After they slept for a few hours, Denaud arrived later in the morning and refreshed their memories. “You don’t have to worry about the new president,” Denaud said. “You don’t have to worry about anything. You are safe here.” The family will receive a one-time $925 stipend per person from the federal government to help pay for rent and other basic necessities, but they are expected to become self-sufficient within six months. “You have to keep your house nice and clean,” Denaud said. “You never know who’s going to come to the apartment.” The International Institute, which last fiscal year resettled 623 refugees who had fled war and persecution in several countries, will help the family find work, enroll in school, register for Social Security, and learn English. The challenges are daunting — the family does not speak English, for one. But regular follow-up will ease the transition to a strange country, said Tea Psorn, a program manager from the institute who came to the United States as a Bosnian refugee in the 1990s. “These people only want safety,” Psorn said. Their vetting process took nearly three years, the family said. A total of 684 Congolese refugees arrived in Massachusetts from 2011 to 2015, according to the state Department of Public Health. In Lowell on Friday, after hours of explanation and advice from Mansour and Denaud, 16-year-old Maria Uwimana floated a final question: Where can we find a church? The family members are Jehovah’s Witnesses, and Maria’s query was answered a short time later when a small group of well-wishers suddenly entered the living room and welcomed the new arrivals with hugs and conversation in Swahili. They, too, are Jehovah’s Witnesses and had been at a gas station only a block away when the day’s interpreter, former Congolese refugee Kafila Bulimwengu, called to tell them about the newcomers. Approximately a dozen Congolese have already joined Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses in nearby Chelmsford, said Markus Lewis, who is part of a church group that has learned Swahili to communicate with African worshipers. Lewis shook hands with Sendegeya Bayavuge, the family’s 52-year-old father, who gradually began to relax as the day wore on. At the airport, sitting with his children after the grueling trip, he appeared exhausted and apprehensive. But in the apartment, as each new wonder was demonstrated, the creases in Sendegeya’s face began to soften. “There will be safety here. There will be a difference,” said Sendegeya, who had been a farmer in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Some worries remain, however: One daughter still lives in a Ugandan camp. “Life was very bad in the camp; there were many problems,” including food shortages, Sendegeya said. “We pray to God to help those who are still in the camps to come here.” Still, Friday was a glorious day for this close-knit family, which seemed humbled into silence by its introduction to the United States. Nyirakabanza, the oldest child, was the outgoing exception: asking questions and trying each new knob and handle for herself. She even practiced putting a trash bag in place. “It’s a new life,” she said, breaking into a broad, beaming smile. “I feel happy to be in America.”
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  14. via TheWorldNewsOrg World News
  15. Night witnessing

    Night witnessing group in Orange County, CA, USA. Night witnessing group in Orange County, CA USA
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    Via
  16. Until Sunday, visitors to Calaveras Big Trees State Park could walk through the tunnel in the Pioneer Cabin Tree. A powerful winter storm in California has brought down an ancient tree, carved into a living tunnel more than a century ago. The "Pioneer Cabin Tree," a sequoia in Calaveras Big Trees State Park, saw horses and cars pass through it over the years. More recently, only hikers were allowed to walk through the massive tree. Over the weekend, a powerful winter storm slammed into California and Nevada, prompting flooding and mudslides in some regions. The Associated Press reports it might be the biggest storm to hit the region in more than a decade. On Sunday, a volunteer at the state park reported that Pioneer Cabin had not survived. "The storm was just too much for it," the Calaveras Big Tree Association wrote on Facebook. It's unclear exactly how old the tree was, but The Los Angeles Times reports that the trees in the state park are estimated to be more than 1,000 years old. Sequoias can live for more than 3,000 years. The iconic tree was one of just a few tunneled-through sequoias in California. The most famous was the Wawona Tree, in Yosemite National Park; it fell during a winter storm in 1969 at an estimated age of 2,100 years. The other remaining sequoia tunnels are dead or consist of logs on their side, the Forest Service says. However, there are still three coastal redwoods (taller and more slender than sequoias) with tunnels cut through them. They're all operated by private companies, the Forest Service says, and still allow cars to drive through — one appeared in a recent Geico ad. SFGate.com spoke to Jim Allday, the volunteer who reported Pioneer Cabin's demise. He told the website that the tree "shattered" when it hit the ground on Sunday afternoon, and that people had walked through it as recently as that morning. An 1899 stereograph shows the Pioneer Cabin sequoia in Calaveras Grove, Calif. Local flooding might have been the reason the tree fell, SFGate reports: " 'When I went out there [Sunday afternoon], the trail was literally a river, the trail is washed out,' Allday said. 'I could see the tree on the ground, it looked like it was laying in a pond or lake with a river running through it.' " "The tree had been among the most popular features of the state park since the late 1800s. The tunnel had graffiti dating to the 1800s, when visitors were encouraged to etch their names into the bark. "Joan Allday, wife of Jim Allday and also a volunteer at the park, said the tree had been weakening and leaning severely to one side for several years. " 'It was barely alive, there was one branch alive at the top,' she said. 'But it was very brittle and starting to lift.' " Tunnel trees were created in the 19th century to promote parks and inspire tourism. But cutting a tunnel through a living sequoia, of course, damages the tree. "Tunnel trees had their time and place in the early history of our national parks," the National Park Service has written. "But today sequoias which are standing healthy and whole are worth far more." The Pioneer Cabin sequoia in Northern California's Calaveras Big Trees State Park was carved into a tunnel in the late 19th century. It fell on Sunday, brought down by a massive storm.
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  17. Smoke inside the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses church at 1304 Empire Street in Cortez caused an evacuation Sunday morning. There were no injuries and the building did not catch fire. Services were canceled. The cause was determined to be a faulty motor in a heating system, according to Cortez Fire Department officials. The electricity was shut off and faulty part was contained. About 75 people were evacuated at about 10 a.m. said church elder Phil Conner. “The evacuation was very orderly, and the response from the fire department, ambulance and police was very quick, helpful and professional,” he said. The heater unit is being repaired. Source Via