|NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) -- One of the cars in this year's Daytona 500 will bear an unmistakable message of support for American-Israeli relations, thanks to a couple of NASCAR fans in Charlotte, N.C.
The No. 49 "America Israel Racing" car will have an American flag and an Israeli flag along with an eagle on the hood when it takes to the track Feb. 26 in Florida.
Rich Shirey and Mark MacCaull want to educate the public about the relationship between the United States and the Middle Eastern nation steeped in biblical history, so they funded the car for the marquis race at a cost of around $10 million, according to WCNC-TV in Charlotte.
"NASCAR is the only sport televised where they pray before every race," MacCaull said. "They are aligned with racing, religion and patriotism."
Shirey admitted the sponsorship is expensive, but "being brought up Southern Baptist, I was always taught we stand behind Israel. This is a way I felt I could give back to society. It's something I believe in."
The two men hope to sponsor the car in races past Daytona but will have to raise additional funds. Their fan base is growing, with more than 400 followers on Facebook.
ABORTION-CAUSING DRUG SOLD IN VENDING MACHINE -- One American university is selling from a vending machine a contraceptive drug that can cause an abortion.
Shippensburg University, a state school in south-central Pennsylvania, stocks a vending machine in its health center with Plan B One-step, known as the "morning-after" pill or "emergency contraception." While the method works to restrict ovulation or prevent fertilization, it also has a back-up chemistry that can operate after fertilization, blocking implantation of a tiny embryo in the uterine wall, thereby causing an abortion.
While other universities sell the "morning-after" pill, Shippensburg's vending machine is reportedly the only one in the country to stock the drug, according to the Associated Press. It has been sold by means of the vending machine for two years and costs $25. Between 350 and 400 doses are purchased each year, AP reported Feb. 10.
Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, decried the availability of the drug in a vending machine.
"Pretty clearly, not only have universities become so immune to abortive medication that they allow the sale of it on their campuses, but they do so with a machine located in a back room of their health center -- without the bat of an eye and with the expectation that those watching you cram crumpled bills into a Coke machine in order to kill your child wouldn't think twice about it, either," Hawkins said, according to LifeNews.com.
"Shippensburg University's decision to sell Plan B -- an emergency contraception that results in the murder of pre-born children and one that touts a slew of harmful effects on women -- in a vending machine on campus is reflective of how dangerous the disease of abortion has become."
Under federal regulations, women 17 and older do not need a prescription to buy the "morning-after" pill, but they must request the drug from pharmacists, who stock it behind their counters. Girls 16 and under must have prescriptions to buy the drug.
University officials defended providing the drug in the vending machine. None of Shippensburg's students are under 17, and no public funds or student fees are used to pay for the drug, a school official said. Other items stocked in the machine are condoms, pregnancy tests and cough drops, according to AP.
STEVEN CURTIS CHAPMAN MARKS 25 YEARS OF MUSIC -- Steven Curtis Chapman is marking 25 years in the Christian music industry by presenting a new acoustic, one-take performance of one of his songs and the story behind it every other Thursday this year at stevencurtischapman.com/scc25.
Each video in the "Twenty Five" series will be available for viewing for only 25 days, and a greatest hits package titled "#1s Vol. 1" will be available April 3. The spring leg of Chapman's "Songs & Stories" tour launched in February with Andrew Peterson and Josh Wilson.
In his 25 years of music, Chapman has amassed 46 No. 1 singles, 56 Dove Awards, five Grammy awards and more than 200 songs on 17 original albums. He has sold more than 10 million records, and his Show HOPE ministry to help families reduce the financial barrier of adoption has provided grants to more than 2,700 families since 2001.
CROWN FINANCIAL LAUNCHES CROWN.TV -- Crown Financial Ministries, which has been transforming individuals' finances, careers and businesses with biblical values for more than 35 years, has launched Crown.tv, a forum for broadcasts from the ministry.
Available at crown.org, Crown.tv is a series of videos updated regularly with news from the ministry's global offices, the latest products and available training as well as testimonies from people who have been aided by Crown resources.
In a recent Crown.tv installment, viewers tour the Crown Training Center in Malawi, where practical farming skills are taught in order to improve crop yields. Students also learn to be good stewards of the land, combined with principles of biblical financial management.
Crown this year announced a new logo as part of its corporate rebranding initiative to better reflect the organization's mission and connect to a broader audience. Continued...