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China censors film production with Christian content including miracles, healing

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China has issued strict new guidelines banning film and television programs including instances of miracles and healing — a move some fear will outlaw Christian content completely.

According to UCA News, the National Administration of Radio and Television, which controls the content on radio, film, and TV aired in China, recently passed new regulations banning 20 categories of content, including material promoting fabricated history, sacred relics, demonic possessions, and instances of faith and healing.

A filmmaker working with the church’s film and television industry said the new guidelines “almost entirely ban” faith-based content.

The filmmaker, who identified himself as Joseph, told UCA News: “If we film the life of Jesus, avoiding the content banned by the guidelines, we will only be presenting Jesus as an ordinary person, and this is unacceptable to Christians.”

The guidelines also require filmmakers “not to film the dark side of society but to film the good life of normal people” and stipulate that historical dramas should be based on “true history” rather than fabrication.

Father Yo from Shandong called the guidelines “strange.” “How can people have a good life when they don’t even have the natural right to freedom of religion? If we do not even have the most basic human rights, how can we be good?”

“What is true history? Is it the one fabricated by the Chinese Communist Party? Would it not lead to creating more fake television dramas in line with the party to brainwash the public?”

In 2018, Chinese President Xi Jinping put the Communist Party’s propaganda office in charge of regulating films. Earlier, Xi announced that “all the work by the party’s media must reflect the party’s will, safeguard the party’s authority, and safeguard the party’s unity.”

Zhang Lifan, a historian, told The New York Times that Xi’s attempts to impose total control over the media is a way for him to “announce his absolute authority.”

“He doesn’t feel effective and confident in dealing with problems, and he lacks a sense of security,” Zhang said. “He worries the Chinese Communist Party will lose political power, and he also worries that his peers will shove him from his position.”

Last year, a former employee of one of China’s largest tech firms monitors citizens’ mobile phones, blocking any words deemed “sensitive to the state” — such as “Almighty God.”

In 2018, China banned online retailers from selling the Bible in efforts to control the country’s growing religious scene.

China claims that it allows religious freedom; however, it has been carrying out a crackdown on underground churches and Christian activists for years.

A recent report from persecution watchdog International Christian Concern documents how the CCP targets Christians through its “sinicization” campaign, meaning, to make beliefs, including Christianity, fall in line with their interpretation of Communism.

Specifically, the report notes that the campaign “seeks to diminish the effectiveness of Christian theology” by removing Christian symbols at churches and replacing them with CCP symbols, rewriting portions of the Bible, observing major Christian holidays with a Communist twist, and indoctrinating state-sanctioned clergy and leaders with CCP dogma.

“The Religious Affairs Bureau and the CCP have a single goal: to prevent religious influence from threatening their communist control,” the report says.

“The issue of international religious freedom is one that should be at the core of U.S. interests,” it adds. “Both sides of the political debate agree that China’s flagrant disregard for religious freedom must be stopped. It is only by coming together that effective policy will be passed and the U.S. will send a clear message to China that its persecution of religion is unacceptable.”

Open Doors USA ranks China 23rd on its World Watch List of 50 countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian.

“A policy of ‘sinicizing’ the church is becoming increasingly influential because the Communist Party is relying strongly on Chinese cultural identity to stay in power,” Open Doors explains. “The new restrictions on internet, social media and NGOs—and the new regulations on religion—are all seriously limiting freedom.”
Sources:Christian Post

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പ്രശസ്ത തമിഴ് നടൻ വിവേക് അന്തരിച്ചു.

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ചെന്നൈ:പ്രശസ്ത തമിഴ് നടൻ വിവേക് (59)അന്തരിച്ചു. പുലർച്ചെ 4.35 ഓടെയായിരുന്നു അന്ത്യം. ഹൃദയാഘാതത്തെ തുടർന്ന് ചെന്നൈയിലെ സിംസ് ആശുപത്രിയിൽ ചികിത്സയിലായിരുന്നു.

ഇന്നലെ നെഞ്ചുവേദനയെ തുടര്‍ന്ന് കുഴഞ്ഞുവീണതോടെ ആശുപത്രിയില്‍ പ്രവേശിപ്പിച്ചു. ഹൃദയധനമനിയിലെ ബ്ലോക്ക് ഒഴിവാക്കാന്‍ അടിയന്തര ശസ്ത്രക്രിയ നടത്തി. ഗുരുതരാവസ്ഥയിലായ നടൻ തീവ്രപരിചരണ വിഭാഗത്തിലായിരുന്നു.

തമിഴ് കോമഡി താരങ്ങളിൽ ശ്രദ്ധേയനായ നടനാണ് വിവേക്. സാമി, ശിവാജി, അന്യൻ തുടങ്ങി ഇരുന്നൂറിലധികം ചിത്രങ്ങളിൽ അഭിനയിച്ചിട്ടുണ്ട്. മൂന്ന് തവണ തമിഴ്‌നാട് സർക്കാരിന്റെ മികച്ച ഹാസ്യനടനുള്ള പുരസ്‌കാരം നേടിയ വിവേക് 2009 ൽ പത്മശ്രീയും നേടി.

പ്രമുഖതാരചിത്രങ്ങളില്‍ സഹതാരമായി തിളങ്ങിയിട്ടുള്ള താരം നായകവേഷത്തിലും എത്തിയിട്ടുണ്ട്. പിന്നണി ​ഗായകനെന്ന നിലയിലും ശ്രദ്ധിക്കപ്പെട്ടു. രാജ്യം പത്മശ്രീ നല്‍കി ആദരിച്ചിട്ടുണ്ട്. കമല്‍ഹാസന്റെ ഇന്ത്യന്‍-2 ആണ് വരാനിരിക്കുന്ന ചിത്രം. തമിഴ്നാട്ടിലെ വനവത്കരണപദ്ധതികളിലടക്കം സജീവ പങ്കാളിയായിരുന്നു.

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Dolly Parton receives Grace Prize at Movieguide awards, says she seeks God’s ‘guidance’ everyday

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Movieguide’s Movies That Inspire honored Dolly Parton on Easter Sunday on The REELZ Channel with its Grace Prize. The legendary country singer declared that God’s grace has always been a part of her life.

The popular award show run by the organization that provides movie reviews for Christians was held virtually this year due to the COIVD-19 pandemic, showcasing films released in 2020 that highlighted redeeming faith and family content.

Movieguide’s Movies That Inspire celebrated five award winners during its broadcast, including Parton.

The American singer and actress won the Grace Prize for Most Inspiring Performance for her role in “Dolly Parton’s Christmas On The Square.”

“That’s been a big part of my whole life,” Parton shared of grace while accepting the honor.

“I talk a lot about faith and family because my grandpa was a preacher, my mother was very, very spiritual, so I grew up very spiritual and I’m a spiritual person, myself,” she continued. “I really have a lot of faith, and I thank God every day [for] everything good that happens to me, and I pray for guidance.”

She concluded her speech by saying that every accolade she receives in life gives her reason to thank God.

“When I do get recognized for things like this, it just makes me think, ‘Well, praise the Lord!’” Parton concluded.

“Safety,” a football movie streaming on Disney+, was named the Best Movie for Families of 2020.

“Greyhound,” featuring Tom Hanks, was chosen as the Best Movie for Mature Audiences of 2020.

The Christian thriller “Infidel” won the Faith and Freedom Award.

Lastly, the Epiphany Prize for Most Inspiring Movie was given to “I Still Believe.”

“I appreciate Movieguide and everything that you do to help educate both Hollywood and the general public on movies that uplift and inspire and model a Christian worldview and the transformational power of Christianity,” “I Still Believe” Director Andy Erwin said upon accepting the award.

“I just think that there’s such power in the truth,” Erwin continued. “You just can’t argue with the transformation in someone’s life that Christianity brings, that the Gospel brings. I love it when someone watches the movies and says, ‘If that can happen to that person, maybe it can happen to me.’ In this case, if the person on the screen can achieve their dreams, maybe the person watching can, too. That’s why we love inspirational, true stories.”

Every year, Movieguide founder Ted Baehr offers a detailed economic analysis of the inspiring family-safe content popular at the box office.

Movieguide’s Movies That Inspire co-host Evelyn Baehr Carroll said this year’s analysis shows that “movies with less cursing, with less nudity, with less violence, do better at the box office because … you can sell tickets for a family of four to a positive movie.”

“That’s much more money than selling a ticket to one person to an R-rated movie,” she argued.

“It’s clear these cleaner movies do better,” she continued. “What we’ve seen since starting Movieguide 40 years ago is that there’s far more content out now than ever, and 80% of movie content actually has redeeming content. These are movies for families or even movies for mature audiences that have biblical worldviews.”

Movieguide’s annual “Report to the Entertainment Industry” has consistently shown the effect of offensive language on ticket sales.

“It’s all very statistical, and we’ve been able to present that to the entertainment industry and help them make more movies with less offensive content,” Carroll added.

Carroll has worked with her dad over the past decade and has seen firsthand how Movieguide has influenced Hollywood, which in turn has resulted in “wholesome movies with great themes in them.”

The awards show broadcast on REELZ also celebrated the movies “I Am Patrick,” “The Croods,” “Created Equal: Clarence Thomas In His Own Words” and “Waiting For Anya,” among others.

The full list of movies and television shows selected for the best content of 2020 by Movieguide can be found here.
Sources:Christian Post

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