Tuesday, July 5, 2022

North Korea blames COVID outbreak on “alien things” — including balloons flown from South Korea; US religious leaders explain why faith in God hit lowest level ever, say COVID made it worse, and other C-Virus related stories

North Korea blames COVID outbreak on balloons from South Korea:
North Korea is blaming its COVID-19 outbreak on “alien things” — including balloons flown from South Korea.
The state media report said the hermit kingdom’s epidemic prevention center had found COVID clusters in the town of Ipho near its southeastern border with South Korea and that some Ipho residents with feverish symptoms traveled to Pyongyang.
The center said an 18-year-old soldier and a 5-year-old child had contact with “alien things” in the town located in the eastern county of Kumgang in early April and later tested positive for the Omicron variant.
In what it called “an emergency instruction,” the epidemic prevention center ordered officials to “vigilantly deal with alien things coming by wind and other climate phenomena and balloons” along the inter-Korean border and trace their sources. It also stressed that anyone finding “alien things” must notify authorities immediately so they could be removed.
The reports did not specify what the “alien things” were. But laying the blame on things flown across the border likely is a way to ease public complaints about its handling of the pandemic while repeating its objections to the ballooning activities of North Korean defectors and activists in South Korea, observers say. --->READ MORE HERE
US religious leaders explain why faith in God hit lowest level ever, say COVID made it worse:
A new Gallup poll shows that Americans’ faith in God has hit an all-time low.
And four Christian faith leaders said that a variety of factors, including young people filling their lives with things besides God and anxiety from coronavirus lockdowns, have contributed to the decline.
The poll showed that 81% of Americans believe in God, which is a six-point drop from 2017 and represents the lowest percentage Gallup has ever recorded. The biggest drop in faith in terms of age groups was a 10% decline in 18- to 29-year-olds who say they believe in God.
Bart Barber, pastor of First Baptist Church of Farmersville in rural East Texas and president of the Southern Baptist Convention, told Fox News Digital that more and more people in the United States have “not only no connection to faith congregation but also really no time in life to stop and contemplate anything spiritual.”
“Even some of the people who identify themselves as Christians and say they believe in God and have accepted the gospel, for a lot of them, church and contemplation and worship have been squeezed out by the schedule in their lives,” Barber explained.
Rev. Lawrence R. Rast Jr., president of Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and a former Lutheran pastor, told Fox News Digital, “People are continuing to search and continuing to think about the larger questions, but the lack of dedicated spaces and time set aside for that leads to the chaos that we see around us presently.” --->READ MORE HERE
Follow links below to relevant/related stories and resources:

Despite Covid-concerns, those wary of the virus still flock to Boston Pops

Cities in China face new COVID restrictions after small clusters emerge

USA TODAY: Coronavirus Updates

WSJ: Coronavirus Live Updates

YAHOO NEWS: Coronavirus Live Updates

NEW YORK POST: Coronavirus The Latest

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