Winston L. Frost has officially been fired as Dean of Trinity Law School in Santa Ana, California in an ongoing investigation of plagiarism. Frost, dean since 1998, has also been removed as regional president of Trinity International. According to the Los Angeles Times, he will remain suspended with pay until the school decides the fate of his tenured faculty position. The investigation is expected to conclude this week.
Frost was accused earlier this month of using large word-by-word sections out of an encyclopedia for his article, "The Development of Human Rights Discourse: A History of the Human Rights Movement." But more allegations piled up quickly. University officials are now investigating allegations that the same article also plagiarized a 1983 paper by legal scholar Jerome J. Shestack, and claims that Frost's master's thesis also plagiarized.
Frost has blamed the plagiarism charges on sloppy editing by students who allegedly deleted some footnotes and added others for references that were not used.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Trinity International University Provost Barry J. Beitzel dismissed Frost's explanations in a letter on Friday. The letter read:
It is apparent from your response that you have sought to evade all responsibility for the law review article that you authored. Both university policy and common sense do not support your position that you have no responsibility in this matter. Moreover, your assertion that these allegations of plagiarism are the result of missing and/or erroneous footnotes is a wholly inadequate response.
The Los Angeles Times reports that the allegations are only "the latest stumble in the occasionally rocky career of the evangelical Christian lawyer."
Scientist finds proof of Sodom and Gomorrah—but not the God part
A retired British geologist believes he has found evidence that Sodom and Gomorrah did suffer the fate depicted in the Bible, but thanks to nature and not at the hands of God. Graham Harris says the two cities may have existed on the shores of the Dead Sea in an area shook by a huge earthquake about four and a half thousand years ago.
Harris argues that the earthquake could have ignited flammable methane pockets under the Dead Sea shores, thus destroying the cities. Hmmm—as if God didn't know the methane pockets were there.
According to the BBC, Cambridge University experiments have backed up the findings. More evidence of the cities is needed to prove they really existed in that location.
Religion is booming in Colorado Springs
Colorado Springs seems to be experiencing a surge in Christian visitors to such an extent that a visitors bureau manger calls it a "a real religious Mecca in a way." With nearly 100 faith-based organizations headquartered in the city, Christian visitors flock in year-round because of such organizations as Focus on the Family, the Christian and Missionary Alliance or the Association of Christian Schools International.
According to The Sun in Baltimore, the last ten years has seen a dramatic rise in religious groups coming to Colorado Springs thanks to a strategic choice by the city to invite in nonprofits. The Sun reports:
Forty-eight percent of the hotel rooms booked through the visitors bureau last year were by religious groups. Secular associations were next at 35 percent. Corporations rank third. In 2000, religious organizations' conventions made up 31 percent of the total in the city — ranging from 10 people to 8,000 … And while their job base is small—under 2 percent of the city—many of these organizations draw smaller groups of visitors throughout the year to seminars and meetings at their offices.
- Bush Urges Senators to Act on Faith Bill | Administration will attempt to expand government aid under a 1996 law that has not been widely applied (The Washington Post)
- DiIulio ends 'mission' blessed, frustrated | Resignation a matter of family, health and exhaustion (Cox Washington)
- Also: Faith-Based Reaction (audio) | Leaders react to DiIulio's resignation as director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives (NPR)
Religion in the Workplace:
- Good for the Soul — and the Bottom Line | Firms promote spirituality in workplace and find it pays (The Washington Post)
- Archbishop tells his flock to take Jesus to work | Sydney's new Anglican Archbishop calls on Christians everywhere to start spreading the word of the Lord (Sydney Morning Herald)
- Towering Buddhist shrine is consecrated in Rockies | Two thousand gather to celebrate a 108-foot-tall stupa, a Buddhist commemorative shrine (The New York Times)
- Also: The Great Stupa (audio) | The consecration of The Great Stupa of Dharmakaya is the culmination of 14 years of work by hundreds of devoted followers, dedicated to the memory of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche (NPR)
- Also: The official site of the Rocky Mountain Shambhala Center
- Milingo's wife not pregnant | Her hunger strike will continue until she sees her husband, she says.(Los Angeles Times)
- Opinion: Are you married, Milingo, or not? | There are many firsts in the battle for the heart and soul of Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo (The Nation, Nairobi)
Crime and persecution:
- Australian priest shot dead | Gang broke in, stole valuables, and shot him in his sleep (AAP)
- Monk is charged with offences against boys | Pupils aged eight to 15 allegedly shocked and abused between 1960 and 1977 (The Scotsman)
- Lebanese army arrests another Christian journalist | Pope John Paul II condemns crackdown (The Nando Times)
- Court upholds ban on cult leader's contacting followers | Yahweh Ben Yahweh, linked to a series of random killings, cannot have any contact with his followers after his upcoming early release (The Freedom Forum)
Other stories of interest:
- Jewish Berliners remember the Wall that divided them | Forty years ago this week, a wall rose dividing East and West Berlin (Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
- Is heaven boring? | By definition, heaven should be endlessly rich and appealing. Perhaps what's bothering us is not boredom so much as fear (Christian Century)
- Ice cream mogul plans anti-sweatshop crusade | Ben & Jerry's co-founder plans socially-conscious clothing line for young people (Mercury News)
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