Caged Nativity Is a Message to Evangelicals

Caged nativity display at Claremont United Methodist Church

From Karen Clark Ristine, senior minister at Claremont United Methodist Church in Claremont, Calif., on Facebook:

Stirred to tears by the Claremont UMC nativity. Inside the church, the Holy Family is reunited.

The theological statement posted with the nativity: In a time in our country when refugee families seek asylum at our borders and are unwillingly separated from one another, we consider the most well-known refugee family in the world. Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, the Holy Family. Shortly after the birth of Jesus, Joseph and Mary were forced to flee with their young son from Nazareth to Egypt to escape King Herod, a tyrant. They feared persecution and death.

What if this family sought refuge in our country today?
Imagine Joseph and Mary separated at the border and Jesus no older than two taken from his mother and placed behind the fences of a Border Patrol detention center as more than 5,500 children have been the past three years.

Jesus grew up to teach us kindness and mercy and a radical welcome of all people. He said: “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” Matthew 25:35

In the Claremont United Methodist Church nativity scene this Christmas, the Holy Family takes the place of the thousands of nameless families separated at our borders.

Inside the church, you will see this same family reunited, the Holy Family together, in a nativity that joins the angels in singing “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace and good will to all.” Luke 2:14

Timeline: Hunter Biden, Burisma and the Trump Ukrainian Scandal

Hunter Biden

Key Points: Hunter Biden was appointed to the board of directors of Burisma, a Ukainian energy company, in April 2014. His five-year term ended in April this year.

Burisma was founded in 2002 by Ukrainian oligarch Mykola Zlochevsky. In 2010, Zlochevsky was appointed minister of ecology and finance under newly elected pro-Russian president, Viktor Yanukovich.

There appears to be an inherent conflict of interest in the appointment of an energy baron to head the Ecology and Finance Ministry, and Zlochevsky and Burisma have been investigated many times over the years for tax violations, money-laundering and self-dealing via the ministry.

In 2016, Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko stated that there was never a hint that either Hunter Biden or Joe Biden did anything wrong in relation to Burisma. He repeated this in a May 16, 2019, interview with Bloomberg News. “Hunter Biden did not violate any Ukrainian laws — at least as of now, we do not see any wrongdoing,” Lutsenko said, “A company can pay however much it wants to its board.”

[…]

Putin Said to Be Source of Trump’s Bogus Ukrainian Conspiracy Theory

Putin, left, with Hungarian Strongman Viktor Orban

Every conspiracy theory has a source. More often than not, however, the source is impossible to track down. Not so with Trump’s pet theory that it was Ukraine, not Russia, that interfered in the 2016 election.

The source of that thoroughly disproved assertion was Trump’s handler, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. Putin first mentioned it in public during a news conference with right-wing Hungarian leader Viktor Orban, in 2017:

[…]

Trump, Barr Had ‘Animated Talk’ about Horowitz Report on Russia Investigation Origins

Donald Trump and his sycophantic attorney general Bill Barr had an “animated talk” in the Oval Office Thursday night, according to a pool report from the White House Press Corps. Two sources told CNN that the topic of the heated exchange was Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s imminent report on the origins of the FBI’s investigation into Russian support for Trump’s 2016 campaign.

[…]

The Law: Contributions and Donations by Foreign Nationals

§30121. Contributions and donations by foreign nationals
(a) Prohibition
It shall be unlawful for-

  • (1) a foreign national, directly or indirectly, to make-
  • (A) a contribution or donation of money or other thing of value, or to make an express or implied promise to make a contribution or donation, in connection with a Federal, State, or local election;
  • (B) a contribution or donation to a committee of a political party; or
  • (C) an expenditure, independent expenditure, or disbursement for an electioneering communication (within the meaning of section 30104(f)(3) of this title); or

[…]

Poll: Support for Trump’s Impeachment Higher Than for Nixon, Clinton at Start of Their Inquiries

Axios: “Public support for President Trump’s impeachment is higher than it was for Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton when the House launched impeachment inquiries against them.”

Why it matters: Support for impeachment of Trump is still less than half the country — 44% in the Monmouth University poll shown here; 47% in CNN. And the polling reflects a 50-50 country. But the Ukraine scandal is pushing the numbers up.”

Don’t Be Fooled: Evangelicals Don’t Support Israel – They’re Rooting for Its Destruction

Over at Buzzflash, Mark Karlin has an article up that sheds light on the real motivations behind Trump’s embrace of Evangelicals, and vice versa.

Evangelicals’ motives stem from “Revelation,” the last chapter in the New Testament, a bizarre acid trip that prophesies the various stages of the End Times. One element of the prophesy has come true: the reestablishment of the nation of Israel in 1948. During the next phases, however, multi-headed beasts, the four riders of the Apocalypse appear and Israel is destroyed. All nonbelievers on earth must be converted or else face eternal damnation.

So be aware that when Evangelicals root for Israel, they’re really cheering on its destruction and the forced conversion of the Jews to Christianity. In the real world, fortunately, it’s all bunch of hooey. But because Trump, the conman, is determined to appease his Evangelical marks, this dark mythology is shaping our internal politics and our foreign policy toward the Middle East.

For more, read “Christian Zionists Want to Hasten Armageddon. That’s Why Trump Attacked US Jews,” at Buzzflash.