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Online betting

 
A game of thousands of millions
A game of thousands of millions

Online betting is a sector in constant growth in many European countries. In the UK Premier League, nearly one in two teams have an online betting house on their shirts.

 
 
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EuroPride Stockholm 2018

 
“Even drugs and violence become something positive in the world of Pride”
“Even drugs and violence become something positive in the world of Pride”

A think tank analysed the programme of last year’s Swedish LGBT festival and found an alarming collision with public health policies. Per Ewert of the Clapham Institutet says the findings show the ‘colourful darkness’ of the movement.

 
 
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Simon Smart

 
The art of missing out
The art of missing out

Having thrown off a religious sensibility, our death-haunted culture needs to squeeze every last drop of experience out of our limited existences, before it all slips away.

 
 
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Nominal Christianity

 
Mission to nominal Christians is an urgent priority, the Lausanne Movement says
Mission to nominal Christians is an urgent priority, the Lausanne Movement says

“One third of the world call themselves ‘Christians’, but a significant proportion of them are missing... Something has to change!”, the statement of the 2018 Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity reads.

 
 
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Geneva

 
“Despite its flaws, the Human Rights Council is a unique venue where we can seek justice and love mercy”
“Despite its flaws, the Human Rights Council is a unique venue where we can seek justice and love mercy”

Christians are called to “open our mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute”, says Wissam al-Saliby, the WEA Advocacy Officer for Human Rights in Geneva.

 
 
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Analysis

 
After 1984
After 1984

The Chinese government has begun to develop a social scoring system that will determine people’s ability to travel or access property, amongst other things.

 
 
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Education

 
Preventing sex trafficking in Eastern Romania
Preventing sex trafficking in Eastern Romania

Volunteers working with the Christian association Valoare Plus set up support groups in secondary schools to mentor teenagers in risk of being trafficked for pornography and prostitution.

 
 
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Interview

 
Keylor Navas: “Football is a blessing from God, but not the most important thing in life”
Keylor Navas: “Football is a blessing from God, but not the most important thing in life”

The goalkeeper of Real Madrid hopes to win his third Champions League on Saturday. “Christ gives me wisdom to keep my feet on the ground and be humble in moments of blessing and happiness”.

 
 
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Interview

 
“As consumers we need to shop like we care”
“As consumers we need to shop like we care”

“It is still easy to succumb to the powerful marketing and cheap prices of fast fashion”, says Corban Bryant, founder of a fair trade garment company in Nepal.

 
 
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Germany

 
European Court of Justice limits employment policies of religious organisations
European Court of Justice limits employment policies of religious organisations

The sentence says churches can only demand confessional allegiance when the job profile made it “significant, legal and justified”. In Germany, churches and their affiliated institutions are the second largest employer.

 
 
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Riga
1

 
European Disability Network: “God is able, He does not disable us”
European Disability Network: “God is able, He does not disable us”

The network of Christian ministries working for the inclusion of people with disabilities celebrated its tenth European gathering in Riga (Latvia) with the participation of 12 countries.

 
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Textile industry

 
Who made your clothes?
Who made your clothes?

Businesses like Purnaa, Made in Freedom and Roam Living are helping to change the textile industry by offering good jobs in a context dominated by exploitation.

 
 
Arrow
Interview

 
Sex trafficking: “We should meet victimised women where they are”
Sex trafficking: “We should meet victimised women where they are”

“Being raped for money several times a day is not safe, no matter where it happens”, says expert Kathy Bryan of Elevate Academy. She mentors women who want to leave prostitution.

 
 
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Interview

 
“We do not tend to see Christians as victims”
“We do not tend to see Christians as victims”

Journalist Pilar Rahola publishes a book in which she collects her five-year work on the persecution of Christians in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. “It was necessary to tell the world that there are people who die, not because of a random bullet, but because they are Christians”.

 
 
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People with disabilities

 
‘Inclusion makes an impact’
‘Inclusion makes an impact’

The European Disability Network will meet in Riga (Latvia), 27-30 April. “We need people who do not have a disability to work with us”, says coordinator Thérèse Swinters.

 
 
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United States
1

 
‘Fight Online Sex Trafficking’ law enables victims to pursue websites
‘Fight Online Sex Trafficking’ law enables victims to pursue websites

The FBI shuts down major prostitution websites and prosecutes owners. Christian activists celebrate move and hope it will help fight sex trafficking in the US and abroad.

 
 
Arrow
Interview

 
“Christians should be in politics for impact, not for power”
“Christians should be in politics for impact, not for power”

Auke Minnema, General Director of the European Christian Political Movement, says young Christians should be encouraged to engage with society following the example of Jesus Christ and many others in the Bible. “We have a message, and we should be salt and light”.

 
 
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Technology

 
Refugees on the screen
Refugees on the screen

The migrant crisis now forms part of imaginary technology through different initiatives and platforms, such as mobile phone apps and videogames.

 
 
Arrow
Interview

 
Michael Ramsden: “We increasingly live in a victim culture”
Michael Ramsden: “We increasingly live in a victim culture”

Politicians and business people all over the world have a high interest in the issue of “reconciliation”, says the director of RZIM. “People need to see that there is a distinct, unique and vital contribution that is made through the Gospel”.

 
 
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Environment

 
“The ocean is the last frontier”
“The ocean is the last frontier”

A report warns that ocean plastic will triple in a decade. “We invest a lot of money for missions to space, but there’s nothing living out there. The sea bed is teeming with life”, experts say.

 
 
Arrow
Interview

 
“What happened to first century Christians is happening today in many parts of the world”
“What happened to first century Christians is happening  today  in many parts of the world”

Andrew Hyatt, director and scriptwriter of “Paul, Apostle of Christ”, talks to Evangelical Focus about his personal involvement in the project and the importance of presenting this kind of historical stories to all audiences.

 
 
Arrow
Short film

 
“Pasarea”: What prostitution hides
“Pasarea”: What prostitution hides

In Spanish cities, “flyers on cars offering services for 20 euros and a drink – it’s so normal most people don’t bat an eye”, says filmmaker Mikaela Bruce.

 
 
Arrow
Technology

 
Mobile World Congress: Life at infinite point zero
Mobile World Congress: Life at infinite point zero

Virtual reality, 5G and artificial intelligence are among some of the services highlighted in the latest edition of the Mobile World Congress. “What do we contribute apart from the trace of our fingerprints?”, asks IT engineer Jesús Muñoz.

 
 
Arrow
Coalition for Happiness

 
A ‘Brave New World’?
A ‘Brave New World’?

Six countries sign an agreement to create the “Coalition for Happiness”. Among its members, there are countries where Christians are increasingly persecuted: the United Arab Emirates, Mexico and Kazakhstan.

 
 
Arrow
Corruption Perception Index

 
Two-thirds of countries face high levels of corruption
Two-thirds of countries face high levels of corruption

For the first time,Transparency International has also examined the relationship between corruption levels and the degree of freedom enjoyed by media and civil society groups.

 
 
Arrow

 
Coexistence in the church - a model for society
Coexistence in the church - a model for society

“Gospel, identity and coexistence” were the themes of the General Assembly of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance. Two days in Palma de Mallorca to reflect about the role of evangelical churches in society.

 
 
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Raising awareness

 
“We don’t sell people in my neighbourhood”
“We don’t sell people in my neighbourhood”

Police experts, the city hall and anti-trafficking movements raised awareness on sexual exploitation of women in Valencia (Spain). A workshop linked pornography to the eroticisation of violence.

 
 
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18 February - International Asperger's Day

 
“The church plays an important role for people with Asperger syndrome”
“The church plays an important role for people with Asperger syndrome”

Adrián Gurpegui shares about what he learned with his son. “It is difficult for them to relate to others, but that does not mean that they want to be alone”.

 
 
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Work and faith

 
“If you live as a Christian, people near you will notice it”
“If you live as a Christian, people near you will notice it”

Richard Novák is 26 years old and lives in Prague. He told us what it means to be Christian in his everyday job as an accounts manager for a packaging distribution company.

 
 
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Health

 
Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally
Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally

Around 70% of deaths from cancer occur in low- and middle-income countries. “Cancer no longer needs to be a death sentence”, WHO says.

 
 
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US research

 
Atheism on the rise among ‘Generation Z’, study says
Atheism on the rise among ‘Generation Z’, study says

The children born between 1999 and 2015 are the first truly “post-Christian” generation. Some of the biggest barriers to belief are the problem of evil and a perceived hypocrisy among Christians.

 
 
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Inequalities

 
More than 80% of the wealth created in 2017 went to the richest 1%
More than 80% of the wealth created in 2017 went to the richest 1%

The World Economic Forum in Davos gathers around 3,000 to tackle the issue of inequality. According to Oxfam, “2017 saw the biggest increase in the number of billionaires in history, one more every two days”.

 
 
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Workplace

 
Companies in Europe increasingly offer “postponed motherhood” programmes

Employers cover the cost of egg freezing. “The message is that your motherhood is an obstacle”, an expert says.

 
 
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LGBT agenda

 
A drag queen for the Christmas parade in Madrid
A drag queen for the Christmas parade in Madrid

A district of the Spanish capital city includes a LGBT float in the traditional ‘Three Wise Men’ parade for children. “We are all queens of our lives”, it says.

 
 
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Analysis

 
Paris summit was “good news” in the fight against climate change
Paris summit was “good news” in the fight against climate change

Christians in Europe are “finally taking the challenge of climate change seriously”, says Dave Bookless of A Rocha.

 
 
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Interview

 
Refugee ministries will meet in the Netherlands
Refugee ministries will meet in the Netherlands

The Refugee Highway Partnership (RHP) roundtable brings together people from across Europe every year. “Christians can guide refugees and help them meet the Prince of Peace and the Real Comforter which is Jesus”.

 
 
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Muslim outreach

 
“Muslims need to hear from Christians what does it mean that Jesus is our Saviour”
“Muslims need to hear from Christians what does it mean that Jesus is our Saviour”

“There are 3 things why Muslims are coming to Christ: meeting authentic Christians; reading the Bible in their own language; and seeing a vision of Jesus”, says Fouad Masri, President of Crescent Project.

 
 
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Testimony

 
Rabadan, past and present of who once was “the murderer of the katana”
Rabadan, past and present of who once was “the murderer of the katana”

A Spanish TV documentary will tell the story of Jose Rabadan, who murdered his parents and sister. He is rehabilitated now, and is a member of an evangelical church. “Showing that there is hope is part of the reintegration”.

 
 
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Study

 
Smartphones, tablets, and the negative effects on children

The use of these devices at an early age “causes lack of interaction and impairs the healthy development of their senses”, pediatricians around the world are saying.

 
 
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Discipleship

 
“God works in both the shepherds and the sheep”
“God works in both the shepherds and the sheep”

Jay Eastman talks about the foundation of disciple-making leadership in an interview. “Out of the identity of being one with Christ, we are able to feed other fellow sheep.”

 
 
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Book

 
Mad or God?
Mad or God?

Pyschiatrists Pablo Martínez and Andrew Sims analyze the mind of Jesus in a new book. “His character traits shined powerfully as he approached death”, says Martínez in an interview.

 
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Arrow

 
What are the essential characteristics of a godly leader?
What are the essential characteristics of a godly leader?

Clinical Pastoral Counsellor Emoke Tapolyai reflect on three characteristics Christians who have been given leadership roles should develop.

 
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Jerry Wiles

 
Orality in the academy and beyond
Orality in the academy and beyond

Practical resources for advancing the Great Commission.

 
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Sports

 
Panama players thank God despite World Cup elimination
Panama players thank God despite World Cup elimination

All players of the squad kneeled and prayed together on the pitch after losing 6-1 to England. It is the first time the country plays a football World Cup.

 
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Latin America

 
Latin American news website ‘Evangélico Digital’ launched
Latin American news website ‘Evangélico Digital’ launched

Christian leaders, politicians and journalists from nine countries connected on a live video call to launch the new media project.

 
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Environment

 
EU bans single-use plastic products
EU bans single-use plastic products

Producers will help cover the costs of clean-up and waste management for items such as food and drinks containers. “Single use plastics are not a smart economic or environmental choice”, says the European Commission.

 
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Calum Samuelson

 
Thinking critically about Artificial Intelligence
Thinking critically about Artificial Intelligence

Intelligence is an extremely complex, contended subject, and there is plenty we still don’t know about animal intelligence, let alone human intelligence.

 
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Latin America

 
‘Evangélico Digital’, a new media project for Latin America
‘Evangélico Digital’, a new media project for Latin America

The website will be launched before summer, offering opinion and information from a Latin American context. ‘Evangélico Digital’ is linked to ‘Evangelical Focus’ through the ‘Areópago Protestante’ media group.

 
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Charlee New

 
Seeing is believing: ‘Deepfake video’ and public trust
Seeing is believing: ‘Deepfake video’ and public trust

Audio and video clips from individuals have been key features in a number of scandals in the public square. Now a new type of video manipulation is going to make it harder to tell the real from the fake in the digital world.

 
Arrow

 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
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Education and faith

 
UK government will not monitor Sunday schools, evangelicals welcome “key step to protect religious freedom”
UK government will not monitor Sunday schools, evangelicals welcome “key step to protect religious freedom”

The government announces it abandons plans to register and inspect out-of-school education settings. An official report confirmed the opposition of many educational institutions.

 
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Interview

 
“Our evangelistic preaching in Europe needs to be deeper and more Christ-centered”
“Our evangelistic preaching in Europe needs to be deeper and more Christ-centered”

Evangelist Hélder Favarin gives insights into how to preach the gospel evangelistically in a secularized society. Sometimes preaching “sounds like a foreign language to non-Christians”.

 
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Madrid

 
The Gospel ‘on wheels’ in Madrid
The Gospel ‘on wheels’ in Madrid

Bikers ministry Covered Backs had a stand at the MotoMadrid Show. They gave away 2,500 copies of the ‘Biker Bible’.

 
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United Nations 2018 Hapiness Report

 
Nordic nations top the list of “happiest countries”
Nordic nations top the list of “happiest countries”

Finland, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, and three other European countries are in the top-10. What should Christian mission look like in such countries?

 
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Carnival

 
Christians, Jews and Muslims denounce “inacceptable” offences against religious feelings
Christians, Jews and Muslims denounce “inacceptable” offences against religious feelings

Members of faith communities are not as protected as other social groups, the four official religious representatives say in a statement.

 
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Christian roots

 
Biblical names still very popular in German-speaking countries
Biblical names still very popular in German-speaking countries

Elias (Elijah) and Maria are number one in Germany. Noah and Lukas (Luke) are the most popular in Switzerland and Austria.

 
Arrow
Jonathan Tame

 
Could the housing crisis strengthen welfare?
Could the housing crisis strengthen welfare?

Like housing, social welfare provision is not just a financial problem; there are social and relational aspects to consider too.

 
Arrow
Andy Bannister

 
By design or by default?
By design or by default?

All the thinkers who laid the first foundations of human rights were not moralising in a vacuum.

 
Arrow
Zurich

 
Evangelical church in Switzerland accepts ‘Bitcoin’ offerings
Evangelical church in Switzerland accepts ‘Bitcoin’ offerings

The cryptocurrency, created in 2009, is used by hundreds of thousands. “It will be part of our daily lives”, the church in Zurich says.

 
Arrow
Juan Francisco Martinez

 
‘#Wetoo’ in the Latino evangelical community
‘#Wetoo’ in the Latino evangelical community

It is time for us to say #wetoo if we are praying for a profound awakening in our churches, if we are willing our churches to have a renewed testimony in our society. We mustn’t fear.

 
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Interview

 
“Non-believing colleagues often see Christianity as a life without much freedom”
“Non-believing colleagues often see Christianity as a life without much freedom”

Czech researcher David Vokoun shares about what it means to live out his faith in the workplace. “What makes a difference is my motivation for doing my work”. 

 
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Science and faith

 
A feast for God’s Word and God’s World
A feast for God’s Word and God’s World

About 90 delegates attended the European Creation Care and the Gospel conference in Nice (France). Chris Wright: “Whatever we do to God’s creation either points to, or diminishes, God’s glory”.

 
Arrow
Jeff Fountain

 
Coincidence?
Coincidence?

In those regions which embraced the Reformation, Halloween came to be seen as incompatible with Biblical teaching.

 
Arrow
Organised crime

 
German police raid Hells Angels properties in over a dozen cities
German police raid Hells Angels properties in over a dozen cities

The northwestern German state has formally banned 2 Hells Angels groups. "Their everyday lives consist of forced prostitution, violence, weapons, and drugs", NRW state Interior Minister says.

 
Arrow
Julia Doxat-Purser

 
Can they hear us?
Can they hear us?

What if, when a police chief or politician spoke about human trafficking, we were ready to respond with our stories and expertise?

 
Arrow
Gavin Matthews

 
Reclaiming our Christian foundations
Reclaiming our Christian foundations

A review of Nick Spencer’s The Evolution of The West: How Christianity Has Shaped Our Values.

 
Arrow
Health

 
The ink for tattoos affects the immune system
The ink for tattoos affects the immune system

Scientific research  warns that some of the dyes used in tattoos contain contaminants that could harm the lymph nodes.

 
Arrow
Education

 
British Schools ditch ‘BC’ and ‘AD’ to avoid offending non-Christians
British Schools ditch ‘BC’ and ‘AD’ to avoid offending non-Christians

The traditional terms are replaced by BCE – Before Common Era, and CE – Common Era. Using the traditional form does not offend Jews, says one of its leaders in the UK.

 
Arrow

 
“Remember you are dust”
“Remember you are dust”

Vaughan Roberts speaks from 25 years of ministry experience to share four lessons on staying the course as a Christian, despite ongoing battles with the world, the flesh, and the devil.

 
Arrow
Racism

 
“Racism should not only be addressed after tragic events, but regularly in our communities of faith”
“Racism should not only be addressed after tragic events, but regularly in our communities of faith”

The World Evangelical Alliance supports the USA National Association of Evangelicals in condemning white supremacy. “Jesus Christ has the power to break down racial barriers.”

 
Arrow

 
Walk
Walk

A two-minute video on the meaning of Jude 24.

 
Arrow

 
Creation Care and the Gospel, in France
Creation Care and the Gospel, in France

The conference drew about 90 delegates from across Europe. Scientists, theologians, activists reflected together on the theme “God’s Word and God’s World”.

 
Arrow

 
Living without your favourite things
Living without your favourite things

A video by Open Doors UK & Ireland explains to children what it means to be a refugee. 

 
 

 
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AUDIOS Audios
 
Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA

“Prostitution is nobody’s dream,  it’s a very traumatic lifestyle”, says Kathy Bryan, director of the Elevate Academy. She mentors former victims.

 
Christians in politics? Christians in politics?

What is the role of Christians serving in politics? An interview with Auke Minnema, the new General Director of the European Christian Political Movement (ECPM).

 
Michael Ramsden: Communicating the Gospel in today’s societies Michael Ramsden: Communicating the Gospel in today’s societies

RZIM International Director Michael Ramsden responds to questions about the secularisation of Europe, the role of Christians in public leadership and the new ‘culture of victimism’.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
Sharing Jesus with World Cup fans in Moscow Sharing Jesus with World Cup fans in Moscow

A team of Steiger mission is starting conversations about the gospel in the middst of the football celebration in Russia.

 
Analysing current issues in the light of the Bible Analysing current issues in the light of the Bible

At the 2018 Apologetics Forum in Comarruga (Spain), Michael Ramsden, Pablo Martinez, Ruth Valerio and José de Segovia analysed how society and the Bible approach the issues of personal identity, integrity, sexuality, pop culture, and environmental care.

 
European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga

The network of Christian ministries working for the inclusion of people with disabilities, celebrated its tenth continental meeting in Latvia with the participation of 12 countries.

 

 
VIDEO Video
 
How the loss of universal values led to a loss of civility How the loss of universal values led to a loss of civility

Author Bruce Little: “We have moved from a sense of responsibility to ‘my personal rights’”.

 
Being a peacemaker Being a peacemaker

Ken Sande, Founder and President of Relational Wisdom 360, develops a practical systematic theology for pursuing peace and resolving the conflicts of real life. 

 
“No one should have to leave their values at the door” “No one should have to leave their values at the door”

Author Krish Kandiah talks with politician Tim Farron about the Christian faith, politics and secularism.

 
What are the essential characteristics of a godly leader? What are the essential characteristics of a godly leader?

Clinical Pastoral Counsellor Emoke Tapolyai reflect on three characteristics Christians who have been given leadership roles should develop.

 
Reaching non-Christian ‘Christians’ Reaching non-Christian ‘Christians’

How can we reach those who call themselves ‘Christians’ but have not experienced a conversion to Christ? Forty missiologists and mission practitioners came together for a Lausanne Movement global consultation in Rome.

 
 
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EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
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Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.