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Dallas County extends stay-at-home order until May 15

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An extended Dallas County stay-at-home order may be short lived.

Dallas County commissioners voted on Tuesday to extend the county’s stay-at-home order until May 15, two weeks past the statewide order issued by Gov. Greg Abbott and a few days after the governor announced plans to re-open businesses across the state.

Shortly after Tuesday’s 3-2 county vote, Abbott indicated during a news briefing that an upcoming executive order could force the county to roll back its stay-at-home restrictions on April 30.

Judge Clay Jenkins and commissioners Elba Garcia and Theresa Daniel voted for the extension. Commissioners John Wiley Price and J.J. Koch voted against.

Price raised concerns that the order was conflicting with Abbott’s. The governor’s order asserts authority over the entire state and suspends powers of local entities if orders issued conflict with the state order.

Abbott, after being asked about Dallas County’s vote and local entities’ authority to maintain restrictions, said he would issue a new statewide executive order Monday that will feature some statewide requirements.

“To the extent that my executive order has statewide application, it would overrule any local jurisdiction” with a conflicting local executive order, Abbott said.

Dallas County’s safer-at-home now remains in effect until May 15, but Abbott could issue an order next Monday that would supersede the local order.

But Jenkins also said at a news conference later on Tuesday that he believes the county’s stay-at-home provisions won’t conflict with the forthcoming changes at the state level because the local order will still direct people to stay home unless visiting a business that is allowed to open or for exercise.

He added that keeping the stay-at-home provisions is necessary to continue slowing spread of COVID-19 as the economy slowly reopens.

“If we rush it, we ruin it,” Jenkins said, acknowledging an urgency to reopen more businesses.

Last week, Abbott announced that elective surgeries would resume Wednesday and that retailers could start selling to-go orders on Friday. State parks reopened Monday with social distancing requirements. He also announced that schools would remain closed to the end of the school year.

But reopening businesses and lifting movement restrictions too soon could result in another wave of COVID-19 cases in Dallas County, local health experts warned the county commissioners court.

Dr. Mark Casanova, president of the Dallas Medical Society, said that adequate testing, adequate numbers of protective equipment and maintenance of hospital capacity will be key as the county monitors the slow reopening of the economy.

“But I think keeping a strong premise and foundation of stay at home, continued monitors and testing would give us the ability to see if the gubernatorial, state-mandated relaxations are serving us well in North Texas,” Casanova said.

The slow reopening of the Texas economy has the medical community “on the edge of our seats,” Dr. Robert Haley, Director of the Division of Epidemiology in the Internal Medicine Department at UT Southwestern, told commissioners during Tuesday’s meeting

Some experts, Haley said, are wary that the reopening of business will cause a resurgence of the disease and cause a spike in cases similar to those before the shelter-in-place orders were implemented.

“This is a very dangerous thing we’re doing right now and we might get away with it,” Haley said.

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Mission group urges Christians to pray for release of missionary pilot, 2 volunteers imprisoned in Mozambique

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The U.S.-based ministry Mission Aviation Fellowship is urging Christians to pray for the release and safety of one of its pilots, Ryan Koher, and two South African volunteers who have been detained for nearly a month in Mozambique on suspicion of supporting insurgent activity.

Koher, 31, and two South Africans — 77-year-old W.J. du Plessis and 69-year-old Eric Dry — were detained in the coastal city of Inhambane on Nov. 4 while they were loading supplies into the aircraft to be taken to church-run orphanages in the Montepuez district in the troubled Cabo Delgado Province.

“I urge Christians around the world to pray for Ryan’s safety and swift release, and call on those in power both in Mozambique and here in the U.S. to do everything they can to resolve this wrongful detainment,” MAF President and CEO David Holsten said in a statement Friday.

While conducting the normal security scan at the airport, police asked about the supplies — vitamins, over-the-counter medications and food preservatives — Koher was to deliver for the orphanages and adult staff, the ministry said, adding that Koher is a pilot for its partner, Ambassador Aviation Ltd.

“None of the confiscated material belonged to Koher nor had it been loaded onto the airplane. AAL has been conducting these annual supply charter flights to the orphanages since 2014.”

The three men have been jailed on a still undetermined written charge, according to MAF.

While the three men were suspected to be supporting insurgency, “Ambassador Aviation has long sought to care for those who have been harmed by the insurgency, including evacuating innocent residents following a March 2021 insurgent attack.”

Islamic extremists have been exploiting a crisis in the coastal province of Cabo Delgado. A civil war started in 2017 over the area rich with gas, rubies, graphite, gold and other natural resources. Protesters demonstrated against what they say is profits going to an elite in the ruling Frelimo Party, with few jobs for local residents.

In the mostly Muslim region of Cabo Delgado in the otherwise Christian-majority country, Islamic extremists kidnap women and force boys to become child soldiers, The Washington Post reported in October.

“In 2017, jihadist insurgents began in the Cabo-Delgado province, winning over some locals due to the fact that they gave back resources to villagers from the government, and killed no one,” the U.S.-based persecution watchdog International Christian Concern reported. “This did not last, however, as IS started setting fire to Christian villages, and killing those who lived there.”

A lawyer from AAL the U.S. Embassy are engaged in the situation, MAF said, adding, however, that Embassy officials were denied access to Koher at a prison in Inhambane. Koher was later moved to the Machava High Security Prison near Maputo.

“Ryan is a caring and gentle individual,” Holsten said. “Over the last couple of years, he and his wife have worked hard to learn the language and culture of Mozambique to better serve those who rely on our service. Understandably, this situation has been very challenging for the family. We fully believe in Ryan’s innocence, and we are all praying that this issue will be resolved very soon with the charges dismissed and Ryan released.”
Sources:Christian Post

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Do Christians Really Donate More? Bible’s Stunning Impact on Charitable Giving Revealed in Fascinating New Study

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As the debate over the impact of Christianity on charitable behavior forges on, a new study reveals Scripturally-engaged Americans are “far more likely than others to donate to charity.”

In fact, the majority of these individuals — people who interact consistently with Scripture and allow it to shape their lives and relationships — report giving to such causes, according to the eighth chapter of “The State of the Bible” report.

“Americans who are engaged with the Bible gave $145 billion to charitable causes in 2021,” a statement from the American Bible Society read. “And … Practicing Christians, those who are actively living out their faith, are much more likely to give.”

The results are pretty stunning when comparing people engaged in the Bible with those who are disengaged as well as the so-called Moveable Middle, a group falling between those dynamics.

Bible-engaged Americans gave a total of $145 billion to charities in 2021, amounting to about $2,907 per household. The same figure for the Bible disengaged was just $924.

To underscore the monumental nature of that giving, consider that Scripturally engaged Americans account for just 19% of adults yet give 44% of every dollar donated.

The finer details point to the fascinating nature of this group’s generosity.

“People who are Scripture-engaged gave six-times as much to churches as those in the Movable Middle and 13-times as much as those who are Bible-disengaged,” a statement explained. “When it comes to non-church giving, Scripture-engaged Americans gave 9% more than the Bible-disengaged and 165% more than the Movable Middle.”

Giving among active believers is, thus, much higher than for other cohorts.

Dr. John Farquhar Plake, director of ministry intelligence for the American Bible Society, said his organization’s research continues to show “a strong correlation between charitable giving and human flourishing.” This is particularly relevant among Christians surveyed in the annual report.

“Engaging with the Bible and actively living out our faith doesn’t simply mean reading the words in the pages of Scripture — rather, it is a transformation of the heart that inspires us to love and live well,” Plake said.

The results for this chapter of the “State of the Bible” were collected from 2,598 phone and online responses from American adults in January 2022.

Atheists will often decry the Bible and its contents, yet study after study shows the strong benefits faith offers individuals and, in turn, the culture at large.

As Faithwire reported, an earlier chapter from the “State of the Bible” report showed “Americans who consistently read and apply the Bible report greater levels of hope and resilience.” Read more about the Bible’s significant impact on the faithful here.
Sources:faithwire

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PASTOR JACOB MATHEW – 57 MEMORIAL SERVICE 12/02/2022

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For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel,and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. We walk by faith, and not by sight! Pastor Jacob Mathew (57 ) has been promoted to his eternal home and went to be with Jesus on 11/24/2022 . He served as the assistant Pastor of the Mizpah Church of God. Pullad. He lived a life that exampled Jesus Christ, a life of servitude,faith,and love. He will be missed by his family, his wife Shiney,daughter Jesna Jacob and son Joel Jacob.

We kindly request for prayers at this time for the family. He is Survived by his mother, Thankamma Mathew, sister Mary Mathew, and brother Paul Mathew and family.


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