I would hope that all members of the “faith community” would make it a priority to be well informed on national and international events.

We are called to be “in the world” and to be salt and light. We cannot do that if we have no idea what’s going on!

Being up on current events takes effort. We cannot simply believe everything we read, see on television or the Internet. Regardless of how you see yourself politically, there really is a lot of “fake news” out there. Journalistic integrity is, at least in my opinion, at an all time low. So, we must know our sources and “fact check” what we hear. (Thankfully, we have no fake news coming out of Waccamaw Publishers!)

In the past week or two, there have been a couple of really important issues making the news. One good and one not so good. First the good news.

Alabama and Georgia (and other states including Mississippi, Ohio and Kentucky) are currently passing legislation to curtail or even end abortion. The barbaric practice of killing unborn children in the womb is now being seen for what it is and thinking, feeling legislators are seeking to stop the killing!

We must pray for these and other states and knowing that this will eventually make it to the United States Supreme Court, we must pray that this current trend in favor of life will be the end of Roe v. Wade!

In South Carolina, the Fetal Heartbeat bill, that makes illegal the killing of the unborn child after the heartbeat is detectable, passed the House by a vote of 64-22 and is now in the Senate. This bill is currently in the Senate Committee on Medical Affairs. Let us pray that this bill will be approved by the Senate, signed by the Governor and become the law of reason and life for South Carolina. (Keep up with what’s happening with the bill and contact your state Senators and let’s not let this die as a similar bill did last term!)

Be assured of one thing: the pro-abortion forces will not take this lying down. Even though their rhetoric is hypocritical and their actions abominable, they will fight for the “right” to kill our children.

The Governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam said in an interview regarding a bad Virginia bill: “The infant would be delivered; the infant would be kept comfortable; the infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and family desire, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.”

An Alabama state representative said, “Some kids are unwanted, so you kill them now or you kill them later.” And I saw a sign at a protest that advocated “Safe Legal Abortions”. Safe for whom? In every abortion there is one death and several injuries, some that may last a lifetime!

People picket the capital punishment of a cold-blooded killer (and yes, we must take seriously any death). We fight for animal rights, and I am an animal lover. But our precious children are worth so much more! The term pro-choice is just that; and the choice is between a dead baby and a live baby!

I cannot believe that any rational, thinking person would be in favor of abortion, of killing an innocent, unborn child. But it’s going on worldwide and we as members of the body of Christ must pray and act to end this “American holocaust”.

The other piece of legislation we must be aware of recently passed the U.S. House of Representatives and is a favored bill of House Speaker Pelosi. This is H.R. 5, the “so-called Equality Act”. This bill adds “sexual orientation and gender identity” to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The bill redefines “sex” in federal laws so that it no longer means the biological reality of being “male or female”. Instead, “sex would include subjectivity such as sex stereotypes, sexual identity and gender identity.

This would bring the force of the federal government against people who believe the Biblical and scientific truth that humans come in two types: male and female (and they are not interchangeable). The bill labels Christian beliefs about marriage, sexuality and family as “discriminatory” and has no religious exemption. (In fact, it states that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act may not be used as a defense for so-called violations.)

We can only imagine the fallout for our children, schools, sports, churches and faith-based organizations, and individual Christian businessmen and women.

Don’t wait. Contact senators Graham and Scott now and tell them to vote “NO” on this bill. Then write the White House and encourage the President to veto the bill should it be reported out of Congress.

Contrary to what we might be told, I don’t know any true “Christ-followers” who are antagonistic against those who choose the homosexual lifestyle or are “phobic” about it. We all understand that we have our own sins and problems, and we must each deal with the consequences of our choices, positive and negative, and we each will stand before God to give account for ourselves, not for anyone else.

And church leaders will also stand before God for the direction their church takes in relation to the clear teachings of God’s word.

But we also must be clear that it is not my opinion, or your opinion that matters. In the areas of sexuality, marriage and family, as in all things, it is God who makes the rules and He has said time and again what He thinks about such things.

Our freedom of religion is the first right guaranteed in our Constitution, and that was not accidental. All other rights of humanity stem from this first right, and God is the one who created us and declared us equal. The government has no right to set limits on the honest keeping of our faith. As former Governor Mike Huckabee pointed out, when a government controls the limits of our faith, it is therefore controlling all other aspects of our lives.

So, let’s be good Christians, good members of the faith community, good citizens. Let’s stay informed, let’s vote, let’s contact our elected officials, let’s love as Christ loved without approving of sin, and let’s pray, pray and pray some more.

Vacation Bible School

With school winding down and summer approaching, thoughts and plans are in the works for summer ministries, those wonderful activities sometimes called “summer camp” and “VBS”.

If your church is planning VBS, send the information to Church Talk and we’ll get the word out so you’ll maximize your attendance!

CEF Golf Tournament

Child Evangelism Fellowship of the Greater Pee Dee will hold its Tenth Annual Golf Tournament at the Hackler Course June 1 from 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Cost is $75 per golfer. There are additional packages and sponsorship opportunities. Phone (843) 365-4233 or go to www.cefgpd.org.

Help4Kids Golf Tournament

The Knights of Columbus Council 8980 is sponsoring a golf tournament to benefit Help4Kids and you are invited to play. This Eighth Annual Invitational Charity Tournament will be held June 15 at the Wachesaw Plantation East. Registration and breakfast are at 7 a.m. and tee time is 9:30 a.m. Cost is $85 per player.

There will be prizes for the top teams plus prizes for top Twosome Teams of: mixed couples, ladies, father and son or daughter. And you could win a brand new car in the Hole-in-One Contest!

Contact Vin Vecchio at (845) 222-9681 or e-mail him at VincentVecchio40@gmail.com.

Ground Zero Sunday Celebrations

They’re back! Again this summer, Ground Zero is hosting Sunday Celebrations on the Boardwalk (between Eighth and Ninth avenues North). These free concerts begin at 6:30 p.m. each Sunday evening. Bring blankets or lawn chairs (but no tents, please).

The lineup is as follows: June 23, Citizen Way with KJ52; June 30, Building 429 with Unspoken and Outcast BMX and special speaker Andrew Palau; July 7, Sidewalk Prophets with Blanca; July 14, Hollyn with 7eventh Time Down. Each week DJ Pdogg will also provide music. Go online to www.mygroundzero.com.

Conway, Loris, Aynor and Western Horry

■ You won’t want to miss the Mark Trammell Quartet in concert at Dogwood Hill Baptist Church, 1040 Mt. Zion Road in Loris. The group will be there May 30 at 7 p.m. Go to marktrammellquartet. com.

■ St. Elizabeth Missionary Baptist Church will have a banquet celebrating its 100th Church Anniversary. This will be held at the Academy of Technology and Academics, 5639 U.S. 701 North on June 1. Phone (843) 358-6468.

■ Cherry Hill Missionary Baptist Church, 504 Church St., invites you to its 2019 Family Fun Day June 8 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Enjoy food and games, arts and crafts, kids’ zone and more. Everyone is welcome! Phone (843) 248-4900.

■ New Home Baptist Church, 1685 S.C. 139, will have VBS Into the Wild June 9-12 from 6 p.m.-8 p.m.

■ Homewood Baptist Church, 3290 S.C. 319, will have VBS on June 9 from 4 p.m.-6 p.m. and June 10-13 from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Phone (843) 365-3403.

■ St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 3449 S.C. 65, will be distributing food on the second and fourth Fridays of each month from 11 a.m. until all food has been distributed.

■ Loris First United Methodist Church, 3507 Broad St., has a Blessing Box in the church and it is available each Friday from 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. This box contains nonperishable food items and individuals in need are encouraged to come to the church at those times. Also, if you would like to donate items, please place them in the box.

■ Dogwood Hill Baptist Church, 1040 Mt. Zion Road in Loris, has a food pantry on the third Saturday of each month from 8 a.m.-10 a.m.

■ Salem Baptist Church, 4008 Salem Road in Aynor, opens its Food Bank on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month from 9 a.m.-noon. The mission: “We serve Christ when we serve people.”

Myrtle Beach/The Coast

■ Please join Catholics for Freedom of Religion/Americans for Freedom of Religion as we honor the men, women and families of the Armed Forces by marching in the Fourth Annual Myrtle Beach Military Appreciation Days Parade at Market Common Saturday!

The parade starts at 10:30 a.m. and travels down Howard Avenue and Farrow Parkway. If you are interested in marching with us, contact Carol Jean Walters, director CFFR/AFFR at (631) 926-0995 or (843) 236-0162 or e-mail her at cjwalters@catholicsforfreedomofreligion.org. There will be a family picnic with live music and activities at Valor Memorial Garden after the parade.

■ Myrtle Beach Christian Church, 1226 Burcale Road, will have a special Memorial Day Service Sunday. There will be special presentations, speakers and music. At 8:30 a.m. special speaker will be Colonel Bob Brand. At 11 a.m., special speaker will be Chief Warrant Officer 3 Michelle Clark. A carry-in dinner will follow the services.

■ Together In Christ invites all Christians to participate in 40 hours of continuous prayer and evangelism at the Fifth Annual Memorial Day Prayer and Evangelism Tent. This will occur beginning on Friday at 4 p.m. through Sunday at 8 a.m. with a Tent Celebration on Sunday from 2 p.m.-4 p.m.

The Tent will be located at Pavilion Park (by the volleyball nets) on Eighth Avenue & the Boardwalk. Phone (843) 340-0624.

■ Seaside Community Church, 10125U.S. 17 Bypass in Murrells Inlet, will have a celebration for all First Responders and Military Sunday at 10 a.m.

Everyone is invited and there will be something for all age groups.

■ Timberlake Baptist Church will hold its annual yard and bake sale June 14-15 inside the air-conditioned Christian Life Center. There are items too numerous to mention, so you’ll have to come see for yourself. And there’s also a silent auction. The church is located at 9850 S.C. 707 (next to Sonic). Contact Gail Harmon at (843) 222-6308 or Bev Anderson at (843) 294-9006.

■ Calvary Bible Church, 4511 Dick Pond Road invites you to VBS The Incredible Race June 17-21 beginning at 9 a.m. Explore God’s love for the nations while traveling around the world. Register at www.cbcmb.com.

■ Temple Emanu-EL by the Sea, 65th Ave. North and N. Kings Highway invites you to Friday night service at 7:30 p.m. (Kosher Oneg), Shabbat Service at 10 a.m. (Kosher Kiddush).

Adult Education Classes: Wednesdays: Advanced Hebrew, 12:45 p.m.; Adult Education, 2 p.m. Hebrew School 4 p.m.-6 p.m.

Current Second Nature Project: we are collecting individually-wrapped snacks and juice boxes to help both the Community Kitchen and Helping Hand. Place in the basket by the front door of the Rosen Center. All Mitzvoth greatly appreciated. Questions? Contact Karen Osborne at (843) 446-1060.

Sisterhood All-Day Mah Jongg Tournament, June 5; doors open 9 a.m. and games begins at 9:30 a.m. Light breakfast and lovely luncheon served. Entry fee $25.

Annual Indoor Yard Sale: Aug. 4, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

Camp Judaea: Israel, Judaism, Nature, Community, Individual growth. For boys and girls age 7-15. Phone 1-404-634-7883.

■ Miracle Deliverance Word Ministry presents “A Supernatural Holy Ghost Latter Rain Elijah Mantle Conference” June 17-21, 7 p.m. at Free Methodist Church Brazilian Community, 220 Ronnie Court. The coordinator is Bishop Brunson Davis; speaker is Prophet Joseph Martin and church pastor is Jose Arimatia Pereira. Phone (843) 269-4802 or (843) 504-4995.

■ Myrtle Beach Christian Church, 1226 Burcale Road, opens its Thrift Store each week, Thursday-Saturday from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. You are encouraged to come out and browse and buy and in so doing you’ll be supporting this community outreach. Phone (843) 236-1121.

■ Temple Shalom, 4023 Belle Terre Blvd., invites you to Shabbat services each Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Phone (843) 903-6634 or go online to templeshalommyrtlebeach.net.

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I'm the editor of the Horry Independent, a weekly newspaper in Conway, South Carolina. I cover city hall and courts, among many other subjects. Know of a good story? Call me at 843-488-7241.

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