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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 24, 2009 / 4 Elul 5769

Judge: Muslim teen who converted to Christianity stays in Florida for now

By Rene Stutzman



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) A judge Friday ordered a 17-year-old girl who ran away from her Muslim family in Ohio to stay exactly where she is — in Florida — until the Florida Department of Law Enforcement can find out whether her family's home is safe.

Moments earlier, Fathima Rifqa Bary, now an evangelical Christian, told Circuit Judge Daniel Dawson she wants to visit her brothers but not her parents.

All five were in court Friday — her father in a business suit and her mother in a long dress with her head covered by a scarf. Through their lawyers, her parents asked that she be sent back to Ohio. They had agreed to let her move into a foster home there.

But Rifqa's lawyer told the judge that's not what she wants. She wants to stay here with her foster family until she turns 18 next August, said attorney John Stemberger, a conservative Christian activist and leader of Family Policy Council.

She loves Jesus, she told the judge, and wants to be free to worship without fear of being beaten and killed.

She ran away last month, she said earlier, because her father had threatened to kill her for converting to Christianity.

On Friday, her father, Mohamed Bary, a jeweler, told the judge he just wants his daughter home and she would be free to practice any religion she chooses.

Stemberger told the judge Rifqa's father wasn't the real threat. The threat is from radical Muslims in Columbus, where the family lives, he said. The community is a center for suspected terrorists, he said, and Rifqa is now their target.

Before the hearing, Rifqa and her lawyers met with George Sheldon, secretary of Florida's Department of Children and Families, the agency now in charge of her safekeeping.



He sat through the 50-minute hearing next to Gov. Charlie Crist's top lawyer, Rob Wheeler.

"I have one concern. The governor has one concern," Sheldon said afterward. "That's the safety of the child."

Sheldon and Wheeler, sitting shoulder-to-shoulder, demonstrated the extraordinary amount of attention the case has drawn. It has prompted a flood of support for the girl and a backlash against Islam.

More than 400 people have sent e-mails to Crist demanding that he save the girl from what some describe as certain death. Crist has made no public statement — but Friday other politicians began to weigh in.

U.S. Senate candidate Marco Rubio issued a statement: "It is imperative that state officials use every legal tool at their disposal to properly evaluate Rifqa's best interests."

Florida House Majority Leader Adam Hasner, a Republican, also issued a statement: "No one should have to fear for their lives because of their religious choices."

Rifqa activists held a small demonstration at the Orange County juvenile courthouse before the hearing, demanding that officials keep her in Florida.

And that's what the state of Florida, through DCF trial attorney Karlene Cole-Palmer, requested Friday and got from the judge — at least for the next two weeks.

For now, Rifqa will stay in the home of a Christian foster family and be home schooled while FDLE investigates any credible threats.

Sheldon said that investigation began Thursday. It should take about two weeks, Cole-Palmer said.

The judge ordered the teen back to court Sept. 3.

Rifqa sat quietly through the proceeding, at times reading from a Bible.

In a voice so small that it was, at times, difficult to hear, she told the judge she has been a Christian for four years and longs to practice her faith openly.

But she also said this, "I love my family. I love them so much."

There was little emotion during the hearing. The one exception was the girl's mother, Aysha Bary, who wiped tears from her eyes from time to time.

When the judge asked if she had anything to say, she began strongly but then got choked up.

"I love my daughter. I need my daughter back," she said. "I have two sons and only one daughter. I need my daughter back."


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© 2009,The Orlando Sentinel; Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.