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Found 151 results

  1. The U.S. government banned all use of Kaspersky Lab Inc. software in federal information systems, citing concerns about the Moscow-based security firm’s links to the Russian government and espionage efforts. All agencies will be required to identify any Kaspersky products they have used within 30 days and develop plans to discontinue their use, according to a directive from Elaine Duke, the acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. “This action is based on the information security risks presented by the use of Kaspersky products,” DHS said Wednesday in a statement. “The risk that the Russian government, whether acting on its own or in collaboration with Kaspersky, could capitalize on access provided by Kaspersky products to compromise federal information and information systems directly implicates U.S. national security.” Read more:
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  2. HOUSTON — Floodwaters in two Houston neighborhoods have been contaminated with bacteria and toxins that can make people sick, testing organized by The New York Times has found. Residents will need to take precautions to return safely to their homes, public health experts said. It is not clear how far the toxic waters have spread. But Fire Chief Samuel Peña of Houston said over the weekend that there had been breaches at numerous waste treatment plants. The Environmental Protection Agency said on Monday that 40 of 1,219 such plants in the area were not working. The results of The Times’s testing were troubling. Water flowing down Briarhills Parkway in the Houston Energy Corridor contained Escherichia coli, a measure of fecal contamination, at a level more than four times that considered safe. Read more:
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  3. How to get kids ready for, and excited about, the Great American Eclipse You’re standing in the yard with your children. The temperature has just dropped 20 degrees, and it’s pitch dark. Not normal nighttime dark — your kids have seen that before — but completely black, as though all the light is gone from the world. Because it has. The Great American Eclipse is coming Aug. 21. For the first time in American history, a total solar eclipse will be seen only in the United States. It is also the first total solar eclipse since 1918 to move from coast to coast. At 10:15 a.m. Pacific time, totality begins outside Depoe Bay, Ore.; at 2:49 p.m. Eastern time, it ends near McClellanville, S.C. In the time between, the eclipse will darken 12 states: Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia and South Carolina. Eighty percent of the U.S. population lives within 600 miles of the eclipse path. In short, if you don’t live in what scientists call “the totality band,” you need to get there. The rest of North America will see a partial solar eclipse, but astronomer Jay M. Pasachoff says settling for a partial eclipse when you could see a total one is like “standing outside an opera house and saying that you have seen the opera; in both cases, you have missed the main event.” Stepping one millimeter outside totality changes everything. Read more:
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  4. KBZK.com | Continuous News | Bozeman, Montana The court case between the Belgrade Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses and the Montana Department of Transportation took another step forward today in the matter of widening Jackrabbit lane. ---------------------- Anyone on here live near this congregation?
  5. Robert E. Lee

    "Robert E Lee was married to George Washington's granddaughter. He worked with Grant during the Mexican-American war and became a decorated war hero defending this country He believed slavery was a great evil and his wife broke the law by teaching slaves to read and write. After the civil war he worked with Andrew Johnson's program of reconstruction. He became very popular with the northern states and the Barracks at West Point were named in his honor in 1962. He was a great man who served this country his entire life in some form or other. His memorial is now being called a blight. No American military veteran should be treated as such. People keep yelling, "You can't change history." Sadly you can. This is no better than book burnings. ISIS tried rewriting history by destroying historical artifacts. Is that really who we want to emulate? As they tear down this "blight" keep these few historical facts in your mind. No military veteran and highly decorated war hero should ever be treated as such. This is not Iraq and that is not a statue of Sadam. IN ADDITION:: Lee was also very torn about the prospect of the South leaving the Union. His wifes grandfather George Washington was a huge influence on him. He believed that ultimately, states rights trumped the federal government and chose to lead the Southern army. His estate, Arlington, near Washington DC was his home and while away fighting the war, the federal government demanded that Lee himself pay his taxes in person. He sent his wife but the money was not accepted from a woman. When he could not pay the taxes, the government began burying dead Union soldiers on his land. The government is still burying people there today. It is now called Arlington National Cemetery. DO THEY WANT TO TEAR THAT UP ALSO ??
  6. Seems as if everyone is selling this pins nowadays. We used to be discouraged from identifying ourselves with Watchtower pins or logos in the past. How do you feel about our modern wearing of pins? What would be the arguments for / against such displaying of logos?
  7. Alvin Mann and Gertrude Mokotoff exchanged vows on Aug. 5 before 50 family members and friends at Middletown City Hall in Middletown, N.Y. CreditJustin Gilliland/The New York Times Gertrude Mokotoff and Alvin Mann were introduced eight years ago at a gym in Middletown, N.Y., where they still work out twice a week. “A mutual friend said to me, ‘I’d like you to meet a very nice young lady,’” Mr. Mann recalled after chopping wood one recent morning at his mountaintop home in nearby Cuddebackville, N.Y. On their first date, he drove her to a restaurant in Middletown called Something Sweet. “He was a perfect gentleman,” she said, and he added, “There was something about her that made me want to keep on talking.” In a heartbeat, they became an item, talking about dreams and goals and sharing a life together. Read more:
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  8. “It is time for states and governors to lead,” Gov. David Ige said. Hawaiian Gov David Ige (D) signed two new climate bills into law on Tuesday that adhere to the Paris Agreement. Hawaii has become the first American state to pass environmental measures that adhere to the Paris climate agreement, just days after President Donald Trump announced the U.S. withdrawal from the international pact. “Truly, in this day and age, it is time for states and governors to lead,” Hawaiian Gov. David Ige (D) said at a press conference on Tuesday, ahead of signing the two bills into law. Senate Bill 559 and House Bill 1578 commit to expanding methods to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the state. They also target agricultural practices with the goals of improving soil health and removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, according to a statement from the governor’s office. “Hawaii’s natural environment is under threat,” Ige said. “Climate change is real, regardless of what others say. Hawaii is seeing the impacts, first hand.” Read more:
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  9. Power Rangers at Comic-Con. Daniel Knighton/Getty Images Attendees arrive dressed in costume for opening day. REUTERS/Mike Blake Part of the atmosphere at Comic-Con International. Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images Read more:
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  10. FAIRFIELD, CA—On July 28, 2017, Tagalog circuit in Northern California of Jehovah’s Witnesses will begin their three-day annual conventions with the theme “Don’t Give Up!” The program will be held in 2020 Walters Road, Fairfield CA. As in years past, the Witnesses are participating in a global campaign to personally invite the general public to attend.Admission to each event is free and no collections are taken. “Nearly thirteen million persons attended our conventions last year worldwide,” states David A. Semonian, spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses at their world headquarters in Warwick, New York. “We hope to have an even larger audience this year.” Angelito Roque, the Tagalog’s local circuit convention spokesman, has estimated 1,900 Filipino to attend this years’ convention which is similar to last years’ attendance.The program is divided into 52 parts and will be presented in a variety of formats, including brief discourses, interviews, and short videos. Additionally, one segment of a three-part feature film entitled Remember the Wife of Lot will be shown each afternoon. Media outlets may contact Mr. Roque for reporters planning to cover the convention.“Challenges in life can rob us of peace and even cause some to think about giving up,” says Mr. Semonian. “Our convention this year will benefit both Witnesses and non-Witnesses because it promises to empower individuals not only to keep enduring but also to cope with challenges productively.”For more information, please go to
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    then click the “Convention” section under the “About Us” heading. Regional Media Contact: Angelito Roque, telephone: (408)238-1063
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  11. Swaying To The Music

    Cancer Does Not Stop Local Jehovah's Witness Couple Leslie and Jim Donigan attend the Jehovah's Witnesses conference today at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, Missouri. (Mike Sherry | Flatland) At happy moments, Jim and Leslie Donigan often find themselves dancing to “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars,” the Andy Williams hit that has been their song since they first met at a pizza joint in Mission, Kansas, decades ago. One of those dance-worthy occasions took place late last year, at the end of a long medical journey. The memory remains strong, even though they have hit a recent bump in the road. As Jehovah’s Witnesses, they plan to attend the Midwest convention that runs today through Sunday at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, Missouri. Organizers believe few attendees embody this year’s theme, “Don’t Give Up,” more than the Donigans, who are both 71 years old and live in Kansas City. About 5,000 people are expected to attend, said Craig Cochran, the convention’s media services coordinator. The ability to be part of a global experience of faith is important to the Donigans, as they once again face medical uncertainty. “It’s like a spiritual family reunion,” Jim said. A website for the religion says there are more than 8.3 million Jehovah’s Witnesses in 240 countries. According to the Pew Research Center, fewer than 1 percent of American adults are Jehovah’s Witnesses. “Don’t Give Up” is the them of this year’s Jehovah’s Witness conference. (Mike Sherry | Flatland) Jehovah’s Witnesses believe in God, who is called Jehovah. As Christians, they believe in heaven and salvation, but they do not believe in hell or eternal suffering. Witnesses, as followers are called, believe the Bible to be the inspired word of God. However, they recognize some parts are symbolic and do not believe all parts of the Bible are to be understood literally. Jehovah’s Witnesses also do not believe in blood transfusions, based upon their reading of passages in both the Old and New testaments. They cite Genesis 9:4, for example, where God says, “Only flesh with its soul — its blood — you must not eat.” No ‘Cowards in the Foxhole’ On Oct. 1, 2004, Leslie fainted. That was abnormal for her, a runner who lives a healthy lifestyle. Doctors could not pinpoint a cause, and later that month they understood why: They found a gastrointestinal stromal tumor, a rare cancer that leaves no blood marker. The tumor was growing on a section of the small intestine and was also threatening her pancreas. The belief about blood transfusions was an obvious complication when it came to surgery. So, the Donigans worked through a Jehovah’s Witnesses group in Brooklyn to find Dr. Marvin Romsdahl, a surgeon at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, who performed a modified version of a common surgery to remove pancreatic tumors. The modified version did not require a transfusion. The night before the surgery, the anesthesiologist backed out because of the risks of doing surgery without blood transfusions. “That’s good,” Jim told Romsdahl. “We don’t need any cowards in the foxhole.” The surgery lasted 13.5 hours, but it was successful. Yet further treatment included a prescription for the chemotherapy pill Gleevec. The cost of the therapy, which Leslie said at the time cost $2,500 per month, brought them to the breaking point, even after using Social Security and Medicare. “It’s always been more than we could swallow,” Jim said, “and progressively over time, it took everything.” More bad news hit in 2008, when Jim lost his banking job during the recession. They had to sell the house they had built nearly four decades before, the same house where they had raised their three children. But in one sliver of good news, a neighbor approached them during their garage sale and told them he would buy another house for sale on the block and then rent it to them. Things began to look up, as Jim found another job, Leslie qualified for a hardship program that allowed her to take Gleevec for free, and then got off the medication altogether when her cancer went into remission. The cancer returned, however, and Leslie must remain on Gleevec for the rest of her life. Now, Gleevec costs $13,000 per month, she said. Another Test In April 2016, the family was tested again, when Jim started having shortness of breath. Their first thought was a heart problem, but the first diagnosis was multiple myeloma, a form of incurable blood cancer. A second opinion was different, but not any better: a form of Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, which causes tumors to grow in the lymphatic system. A PET scan revealed 100 tumors, and Jim started his own costly round of chemotherapy. The Donigans vist with their son, Joel, and his wife, Carrie, at the conference. (Mike Sherry | Flatland) His lymphatic system failed during treatment, causing fluid buildup around his stomach and lungs. Jim suffered malnutrition when draining the fluid removed electrolytes and proteins. By October, doctors gave him two months to live. Leslie got it in writing. Yet as he sat in the hospital, saying his goodbyes, Jim had a thought: “Why couldn’t we take those fluids from my stomach and put them back into my heart, where they need to be?” The question sparked an idea for one of Jim’s doctors, who inserted a shunt normally used to treat cirrhosis. Within two weeks, the fluid buildup was gone. On Dec. 27, when he was home filing paperwork, Jim came across the letter telling him he only had two months to live. He did the math, and then they had an “I ain’t dead yet party.” At the party, Jim sipped his first glass of wine in a year, and the couple danced once again to their favorite song. The luster remained up until this week, when an infection flared up around the shunt, and the fear of cancer returned. This most recent medical challenge has shown Jim and Leslie how important their faith is in preparing them for the troubles that can lie ahead. The convention, and especially its theme, is coming at just the right time to help guide them through this newest trial, Leslie said. “No one is shielded from the human experience,” Leslie said. “But personally, we find it better to be prepared to keep these types of relapses in their proper perspective.” — Catherine Wheeler is a multimedia intern for Flatland. She is a graduate student studying journalism at the University of Missouri, Columbia. Catherine has a bachelor’s degree in English-Writing from Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. She currently lives in Kansas City. You can reach her at cwheeler@kcpt.org
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  12. Kushner Companies, CIM Group and LIVWRK plan to turn building into office complex The iconic Watchtower sign, a glowing fixture over Brooklyn Heights, will soon disappear from the skyline. Earlier this month, the Jehovah’s Witnesses filed a permit application seeking to remove the 15-foot-tall letters from the roof of the organization’s now-former headquarters. The request comes nearly a year after developers Kushner Companies, CIM Group and LIVWRK Holdings purchased the building at 25-30 Columbia Heights for $340 million. Removal of the letters will cost an estimated $70,500, according to documents filed with the city’s Department of Buildings. The sign’s framework will remain in place, according to the application filed June 9. The developers — who collectively go by Columbia Heights Associates — declined to comment. Representatives for the Jehovah’s Witnesses didn’t return messages seeking additional information on the sign’s future. The sign has hovered over Brooklyn Heights for nearly 50 years. The religious organization purchased the building in 1969 from pharmaceutical giant E.R. Squibb & Sons. At the time, Squibb had its own sign on the roof. According to the Witnesses’ website, the sign’s red neon lights were swapped for LEDs in 2009 — saving the organization some $4,000 in annual maintenance costs. The departure of what many have described as a Brooklyn landmark is not necessarily a surprise. When the new owners unveiled plans in May to convert the building into a 635,000-square-foot office complex — dubbed “Panorama” — renderings show some sort of sign but not the iconic letters. At the time, the Brooklyn Eagle speculated that one of the building’s new tenants would secure the rights to put their own sign in the old one’s place. In a video posted on the religious group’s website, Vernon Wisegarver, one of the group’s leaders, hinted that the sign’s time with the building was limited: “As for its future, it will probably remain with that building as long as we remain with that building.”
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  13. Sorry, not those aliens. A new study published in Nature Ecology & Evolution points to the Hawaiian Islandsas a global hotspot for "established alien species," or invasive breeds of plants, animals, and insects. So although when we picture the Big Island we may conjure its iconic giant sea turtles and surfing dolphins, it's actually teeming with life introduced by humans. Hundreds of feral pigs, goats, donkeys and sheep run free on land, while cute-but-destructive guppies are pervasive beneath the waves. The study, conducted by an international team of scientists based at Durham University, is the first to identify global hot and coldspots of invasive species by analyzing data on eight different taxonomic groups (birds, fish, amphibians, mammals, reptiles, vascular plants, ants, and spiders). Yes, spiders get their own category. By identifying areas saturated with non-native species, the researchers were able to find trends—qualities that made these areas especially prone to ecosystem-upsetting infiltrators. In particular, they found that hotspots are more common in island or coastal areas in regions with high gross domestic product per capita, and high human population density. In other words, wealthier, more populated areas connected to the ocean have more alien species. That means there is no doubt that we play a key role in introducing these potentially destructive creatures. Read more:
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  14. President Barack Obama signed a letter to the United Nations in 2016 accepting the Paris climate Last week, President Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. But it will take more than one speech to pull out: Under the rules of the deal, which the White House says it will follow, the earliest any country can leave is Nov. 4, 2020. That means the United States will remain a party to the accord for nearly all of Mr. Trump’s current term, and it could still try to influence the climate talks during that span. So the next four years will be a busy time for climate policy. Mr. Trump’s aides plan to keep working to dismantle domestic climate programs like the Clean Power Plan. And the world’s nations will meet regularly to hash out details of the Paris agreement, even as the United States’ exit looms. Here is what comes next. Read more:
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  15. Jehovah’s Witnesses from across the region are preparing for their annual convention next month in St. Charles, Missouri. A message of persevering with hope over the daily struggles of life is the theme of the two consecutive weekends, July 21 and July 28, at Family Arena in St. Charles. “Most would agree that we live in a world of uncertainty so the significance of this event is to show how God supplies endurance to all sorts of people today,” said Bob Valenti, media services overseer for Jehovah’s Witnesses. The convention features talks and interviews by some of the church’s elders. There will also be guest speakers from Jehovah’s Witnesses’ world headquarters in Warwick, New York. Valenti said that what draws most people to the convention is the public discourses Sundays at 11:20 a.m. “This will prove to be most encouraging. In addition to the entire event, it will show how individuals and families can enjoy a happy life,” Valenti said. “Our attendees walked away with renewed hope.” All sessions are free. For more information, go to bit.ly/1oA5CA1 [www.jw.org/en/jehovahs-witnesses/conventions/].
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  16. Indiana woman Jamie Porter claimed her first-grader son was punished for refusing to say the pledge of allegiance. Now she is suing the teacher and principal allegedly responsible. The complaint, obtained by Fox 59, said the incident happened in March. Fuqua Elementary School teacher Kelly McFarland allegedly sent the boy to the principal’s office because he stayed seated during the pledge. Asked why he didn’t recite it, he said that “he was doing it to protest the government of the United States, as it was racist, greedy and does not care about people,” the lawsuit stated. Later, Principal Mary Beth Harris‘ office allegedly made him practice reciting the pledge. He and his mother now seek damages after he disliked the way school officials treated him. He was also still mourning after his father recently passed away, the lawsuit said. LawNewz.com reached out to McFarland and Harris for comment, and will update when they respond. The Vigo County School Corporation, a public school district, has not been sued. Case law on this sort of allegation remains very clear: officials cannot make students say the pledge. Doing so violates kids’ First Amendment rights. This dates back to the 1943 Supreme Court case West Virginia v. Barnette. They voted 6-3 on behalf of several students, all of whom were Jehovah’s Witnesses refusing to stand for the pledge on religious grounds. Justice Robert H. Jackson said the government, including school officials, couldn’t force people to say things they don’t mean: To sustain the compulsory flag salute, we are required to say that a Bill of Rights which guards the individual’s right to speak his own mind left it open to public authorities to compel him to utter what is not in his mind.
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  17. It was one in the morning in late March when Luis, a 43-year-old Mexican man, tiptoed across the floor in his socks. He had just been startled from sleep by the sound of violent knocking on the door of the double-wide trailer where he and a few other farmworkers live. He was terrified; he leaned against the wall and listened. Luis is no stranger to violence. Even though he has worked on a relatively tranquil apple farm in upstate New York’s mid-Hudson region for over a decade, he originally came to the United States to flee the violence in Guerrero state on Mexico’s west coast. For years there, vigilante militias have been fighting back against local warlords. The last time he was home, five years ago, Luis wanted to stay. He drove a pickup truck as a form of taxi service for hotel workers, but the warlords held him up at gunpoint, threatening to kill him if he didn’t give them a cut of his fares. (Pseudonyms have been used in several instances throughout this article to protect the identities of undocumented farmworkers and the farmers who employ them.) “If you don’t pay,” Luis told me, “they kill you.” So he journeyed back to the United States, walking across Mexico every night for a week under the guidance of a “coyote,” or human smuggler. That, too, was frightening. He says he was so thirsty, he thought he might die. But in March, in the middle of the night in the Hudson Valley, Luis’s fear wasn’t dehydration or gangs—he was afraid that agents from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement might be outside. He locked the door to his bedroom and waited. Eventually, the knocking stopped, but Luis barely slept that night. The next day, he found out that the hammering on the trailer’s door was an incoming guest worker who had wound up sleeping outside on the stoop of another sprawling double-wide trailer on the farm. During picking season in late summer, the farm houses dozens of seasonal and undocumented workers. Luis had good cause to be afraid. About a week prior to the late-night knocking, ICE had picked up an undocumented farmworker on this same farm because he’d been convicted of two DUIs. And a few days after that, on a different apple farm just a few miles away, ICE had come before sunup for a 23-year-old man, Diego, who is from Guatemala. He had also been charged with DUIs. Diego is one of four brothers who, one by one over the years, all hitchhiked from Central America, walked across Mexico, and eventually found their way to the Hudson Valley to pick apples. He’s now detained, awaiting deportation proceedings in lower Manhattan. According to his attorney at a local nonprofit public-defense firm, Diego has a less than 5 percent chance of getting bail, much less staying in the United States. Continue reading
  18. ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) - Four conventions will be held in Lubbock, Texas for the Jehovah's Witnesses this summer. Jehovah's Witnesses from Eastern New Mexico and West Texas will be gathering at the Memorial Civic Center in Lubbock, Texas over the summer for four conventions exploring the theme "Don't Give Up". The group is also extending the invitation to all, regardless of religious affiliation or belief. "The theme will be discussed through scriptural presentations, dramatizations of real-life events and recreations of biblical accounts" said event spokesman Robert Sprecher, an elder at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses in Portales, New Mexico. The four three-day conventions will be divided into two Spanish and two English events. The first of the three-day Spanish conventions will begin Friday, June 16. The second will begin on Friday, July 7. The first English convention will begin Friday, August 4, and the second will begin on Friday, August 25. All events will begin at 9:20 a.m. There is no admission fee for the events and no collections taken. The Jehovah's Witnesses are supported by voluntary donations. This year the group expects around 10,700 members and interested persons to attend this years conventions. Last year there were over 430 conventions in 110 cities and 32 languages. Recently, Jehovah's Witnesses were in the news after being labeled an "extremist organization" by Russia. Worldwide there are more than 8,300,000 Witnesses in over 119,000 congregations. Fore more information, visit their website at www.jw.org/en/jehovahs-witnesses/conventions
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  19. TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - If your weekend plans includes heading downtown, you might want to prepare for a few extra thousand people in the area.The Tucson Convention Center will be packed for the next several weekends because of the Convention of Jehovah's Witnesses annual gatherings.The weekend-long events happen between May and September, with about 245 different conventions in the United States, a spokesmen said. Seven of those regional conventions are held in Tucson at the TCC from June through August.Roughly 6,000 people attended Friday's symposium, along with various talks throughout the morning and afternoon.Jonathan Osego, a convention spokesman, said organizers and visitors are taking advantage of what Tucson has to offer."I live in Tucson so the benefit is it's local for us," he said. "And I know that locally we're going to be staying in motels and eating out during the three days, so I'm sure it helps the economy too."It's quite the amount. Tucson News Now learned that last year, about $2.3 million was contributed to the local economy each weekend. By the end of the summer, totaling up the amount from all seven conventions scheduled at the TCC, the financial impact for Tucson is nearly $16 million.Osego said they have a solid relationship with the convention center."We're really grateful to the management because they make the facilities available, and then Tucson is a great town too. Some of the folks that are here they are coming from all over Arizona, and will be doing so during the seven weeks," he explained.The conventions are open to the public, you won't be charged admission, and no collection will be taken, according to Osego.
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  20. Jehovah’s Witnesses will hold two weekend annual conventions at the St. Charles Family Arena, 2002 Arena Pkwy, St Charles, MO 63303. The first three-day event begins on Friday, July 21, 2017; the second three-day event begins on Friday, July 28, 2017. For detailed information and a program please visit this link:
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    The 2017 convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses, entitled “Don’t Give Up!”, shows how to enjoy a happy life now and gain a real hope for the future. Featured will be talks, interviews and multimedia so that all in attendance can discover how the Bible and even nature teach lessons about how to endure in today’s world. A highlight of the program, the public Bible discourse on Sunday at 11:20 am, will provide encouragement to: “Never Give Up Hope”. All sessions are free and no collection plates are passed.
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  21. Their parents died violent deaths. Now grandparents of 7 Glen Carbon children fighting for guardianship EDWARDSVILLE • Seven children from Glen Carbon whose parents died in March are now at the center of a struggle over guardianship between their paternal grandparents and their maternal grandmother. According to court documents, Nancy and Henry Campbell of Glen Carbon, the children’s paternal grandparents, filed a petition for guardianship after the parents, Cristy and Justin Campbell, died March 16. More than a month later, Cristy Campbell’s mother, Lenora Brueggemann of Caseyville, filed a counterpetition for guardianship that alleged Nancy and Henry Campbell were forcing the children, five boys and two girls, ages 5 months to 14 years, to adopt a lifestyle that harms their mental health. The counterpetition claims that Nancy and Henry Campbell have: • Forced the children to adopt the couple’s religion, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and to seek converts by going door to door. • Banned contact between the children and Brueggemann because Brueggemann is not a Jehovah’s Witness. • Planned to have the children discontinue their extracurricular activities, including sports. The document says Brueggemann was the primary alternate child care provider for the children before their parents’ deaths. Brueggemann was unable to house all seven children after their parents’ deaths, but the petition says she is working on securing an adequate living situation. Read more...
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  22. 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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  23. 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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