LISTEN: Black Christian News Network One (BCNN1) Podcast – 06/20/19, with Daniel Whyte IV

The top stories you need to know about today.

According to the Christian Post, The 10,000-member Celebration Church community in Louisiana is grieving after Claude Williams, pastor of the church’s Westbank campus, was killed with two others Sunday after he stopped to help a stranded motorist. The church’s Lead Pastor, Dennis Watson, revealed in a letter that Williams and his longtime friend Jeff Leinart, who are both 49, had stopped to help a man change a flat tire. A New Orleans man who police suspect was intoxicated, was hospitalized and later arrested and charged with three counts of vehicular homicide for the crash.

According to the LA Focus, The Los Angeles Baptist community is mourning after the recent loss of two iconic pastors, Pastor Emeritus W. Jerome Fisher of Greater Zion Church Family (formerly known as Little Zion) and Pastor Earl Alfred Pleasant of Greater New Bethel Baptist Church. It was in 1958 that the senior Fisher established Little Zion Baptist Church, after arriving in Compton following an exodus of white people from the community. Fisher served as the pastor for nearly 50 years growing it into one of the largest churches in the city. Fisher served as the pastor for nearly 50 years growing it into one of the largest churches in the city. Well respected among ministers in the nation, he was known as an exceptional man of God who dedicated his life to teaching others.

According to the Hill, President Trump’s spiritual adviser, Paula White, said in the opening prayer before his campaign kickoff rally in Orlando, Fla., on Tuesday that “demonic networks” have aligned themselves against the president. White spoke of her long term relationship with the Trump family and led the thousands in the arena in prayer.

According to the AP, Lawmakers on Wednesday held the first congressional hearing in more than a decade on reparations, spotlighting the debate over whether the United States should consider compensation for the descendants of slaves in the United States. The witnesses at the House Judiciary subcommittee included actor and activist Danny Glover, writer Ta-Nehisi Coates and Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, a Democratic presidential candidate. Coates told the panel, “The matter of reparations is one of making amends and direct redress but is also a question of citizenship.” But another writer Coleman Hughes, who at times testified over boos from the audience, said black people don’t need “another apology,” but safer neighborhoods, better schools, a less punitive criminal justice system and better health care. The hearing comes amid a growing discussion in the Democratic Party about reparations. Several of the party’s presidential candidates have endorsed looking at the idea, though they have stopped short of endorsing direct payouts for African Americans.

According to the AP, Phoenix, AZ, Police Chief Jeri Williams promised change in her department after being booed by some of hundreds of people gathered to discuss a videotaped police encounter that has caused a national outcry. The meeting at a downtown church Tuesday night was called by the city in the wake of the release of a bystander’s video of police officers who pointed their guns and shouted obscenities last month at a black family. Dravon Ames and his pregnant fiancee Iesha Harper, who was holding their 1-year-old daughter, say their 4-year-old daughter had stolen a doll from a store without their knowledge. Williams told the sometimes hostile crowd that “real change starts with the community.” But some fired back, “Real change starts with the firing of the officers! Fire them!”

According to the Christian Post, Nearly 2 million people gathered on the streets of Hong Kong to participate in a mass protest against a controversial extradition bill that could see residents sent to mainland China to stand trial. Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam, suspended the bill on Saturday and followed that up with a rare apology the next day. Determined to preserve the systems it inherited from Britain, which included freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and eventually, free elections, protesters are calling on Lam to resign — and for the bill to be scrapped, not merely suspended. Christians have been among the leading forces behind the protests in Hong Kong, and several influential evangelical and Catholic leaders have participated in the demonstrations.

According to the Christian Post, Islamic extremists in West Africa have reaffirmed their allegiance to the Islamic State and its leader as deadly attacks occurred with greater frequency across the Sahel region in the last several months. The Long War Journal, a news outlet operated by the Washington-based policy institute Foundation for Defense of Democracies, reports that militants in Mali and Burkina Faso released a short video Saturday renewing their fealty to the caliphate. The video comes as deadly attacks blamed on extremist groups continue to be carried out in northern Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Nigeria, resulting in the loss of countless lives.

According to the AP, President Donald Trump raised $24.8 million less than 24 hours after kicking off his reelection campaign, a figure that dwarfs what the top Democratic contenders took in over the course of months. The staggering total was announced in a tweet on Wednesday morning by Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel. She declared that it was proof that “enthusiasm across the country for this president is unmatched and unlike anything we’ve ever seen.”

According to Japan Times, At least 26 people were injured, including one seriously, after a magnitude 6.7 earthquake struck Japan’s northwestern region late Tuesday, causing landslides and power outages in some areas. The quake hit Niigata Prefecture, recording a maximum of upper 6 to 7 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale.

According to the AP, Authorities in the Dominican Republic on Tuesday announced the arrest of an 11th suspect in the attempted killing of former Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz. An official identified the suspect as Franklin Junior Merán. Merán is accused of renting one of the cars used in the June 9 shooting at a bar in Santo Domingo. The newest arrest came as doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital upgraded Ortiz’s condition from “guarded” to “good.”

According to the AP, An independent U.N. report into the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi said Wednesday there is “credible evidence” to warrant further investigation into the possible role of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and suggested sanctions on his personal assets. The scathing probe is likely to further harden opinion against the crown prince in Washington and other Western capitals, where critics say an operation of this magnitude would have required the powerful prince’s knowledge. Khashoggi was killed, and believed to have been dismembered, inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul by Saudi agents on Oct. 2. His remains have never been found.

According to the AP, International prosecutors announced murder charges Wednesday against four men — three of them Russians with military or intelligence backgrounds — in the missile attack that blew a Malaysia Airlines jet out of the sky over Ukraine five years ago, killing all 298 people aboard. The case, built with the help of wiretaps, radar images and social media posts, marks the most significant step yet toward tying the tragedy to Moscow, which has backed the pro-Russian separatists fighting to seize control of eastern Ukraine.

According to Fox News, U.S. Central Command released new images Monday showing the aftermath of mine attacks against two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week, including some images purporting to show Iranian forces removing an unexploded device from the hull of one of the vessels. Hours later, Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said he had approved a request to send approximately 1,000 additional troops to the Middle East “to address air, naval, and ground-based threats” in the region. Shanahan said, “The United States does not seek conflict with Iran. The action today is being taken to ensure the safety and welfare of our military personnel working throughout the region and to protect our national interests.”

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In closing, remember, God loves you. He always has and He always will. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you don’t know Jesus as your Saviour, today is a good day to get to know Him. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose from the dead for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thanks for listening and may God bless your day!