HIV/AIDS Is Staging a New Comeback
By Tom Toolen
Rev. Raphael Warnock
WASHINGTON—The HIV/AIDS epidemic is making a big comeback in poor and undeserved communities, and the reason is money—the lack of it.
The nation’s ultra shaky economy has pulled the rug out for much of federal funding for AIDS patients to the states, where the 1.2 million Americans with the disease receive their treatment.
The hurt is especially severe in black and minority communities in cities like New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, where state programs that administer Medicaid and Medicare have been thrown into a turmoil by the disappearing funds for patients kept alive by their drug treatment for HIV/AIDS.
Many African American religious leaders call the cuts in funding another example of racism since more than 50 percent of the AIDS/HIV victims are black or Hispanic.
“Back in the 1980s when AIDS was considered a gay white man’s disease, the money was coming in fast and furious, but now that it is an epidemic in the African American communities, the funding is getting smaller and smaller,” said Rev. James Favorite of the Beulah Baptist Institutional Church in Tampa, Fl.
Many financially-strapped states are running out of money to fight HIV/AIDS. Several, including Florida and Georgia, are desperately searching for ways to provide needed drug treatment for HIV/AIDS patients, who do not have insurance or can’t afford the drugs, which can cost more than $12,000 per year.
“I th...Read More
Rev. William A. Watson, Jr. is concerned about issues of faith and economics.
WESTBURY, NY--The Rev. William A. Watson Jr., the longtime religious and civil rights leader running for president of the Empire Baptist Missionary State Convention, wants to lift the African American clergy and their congregations by their pocketbooks.
“We’ve done the bootstrap thing, now let’s get down to business,” he told The Spiritual Herald. “We know the Bible, but it’s time we learned the economy, too.”
Such is the practical message of Watson, who is pastor of St. John’s Baptist Church in Westbury, Long Island. He is al...Read More
Rev. Zachery Tims
ORLANDO--Many wept and expressed feelings of sorrow. At the same time, many also laughed and expressed feelings of joy. The gathering could have been a typical eulogy, but because of the magnitude of people, it could have been a tent revival meeting.
In late August, an estimated 5,000 family, friends, politicians, worshippers and celebrities showed up at the funeral services for Reverend Zachery Tims at First Baptist of Orlando to honor a man they viewed as not only a man of God, but as a civil rights leader as well.
During the eulogy, mega-church evangelist T.D. Jakes like...Read More
NEW YORK--A rising tide of physicians are objecting to a new law that forces them to reveal medical details to patients who are nearing death.
The law in New York follows one in California that states that patients with a terminal illness must be told by their doctors of appropriate palliative care and end -of-life options that are available to them.
“The law will have a direct negative effect on too many cancer patients,” said Yashar Hirshaut, M.D., an oncologist at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. He said near-death patients must be made as...Read More
As churches lift the ban on gay marriage, more and more same-sex marriages will be performed.
WASHINGTON--The separation of church and state cannot separate same sex couples who are getting married, but it is separating—or agonizing—some clergy from their churches.
In a random survey conducted by The Spiritual Herald, 43 percent of the top 14 mainstream religious organizations allow ministers to officiate same-sex marriages.
Half of the 43 percent of organizations have accepted same-sex marriage on a widespread, official basis and the other half have simply lifted the previously standing bans and have put the decision in the hands of the congregations.Read More