A Baylor University professor played a key role in discovering new insights into the puzzling breakdown of Maya civilization.
Julie Hoggarth, an assistant professor of anthropology at the Waco, Texas school, was directing excavations into a royal palace complex in Belize when an ancient painted vase, covered in hieroglyphs, was found amid other artifacts, Baylor reported.
One of them was the emblem for “Yaxha,” an ancient ceremonial city and center in Guatemala. Hoggarth snapped a photo of the fragment with a cell phone and shared it with Christophe Helmke, a University of Copenhagen archaeologist and scholar of classic Maya hieroglyphic scripts.
Helmke responded within the hour: “This is really important. Find more.”
The vase’s roughly nine-inch length, Hoggarth said in the Baylor article, “makes it all the more amazing. At its full length, it would have had 202 hieroglyphic blocks, making it the longest Pre-Columbian text discovered in Belize and among the top 10 longest Classic Period (A.D. 250 to 1000) texts ever discovered in the Maya area.”
Photos and illustrations of the find have been published recently in a book titled A Reading of the Komkom Vase Discovered at Baking Pot, Belize. It contains a detailed translation and analysis of the hieroglyphs and text that describe “political upheaval, alliances, warfare, rituals, Maya rulers’ genealogy — and ‘propaganda about royalty,’— during an era of ‘godly kings,'” Hoggarth said.
CBF urges comments on payday lending
The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship has issued a “Payday Reform Action Alert” to counter efforts by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to negate strong protections before they take effect.
CBF is urging supporters of the payday lending regulations to participate in a public comment period that is open through May 15.
The Fellowship encouraged the sharing of personal experiences with payday lending or those of friends or family members.
“We need people of faith to speak out,” a CBF announcement said. “Make a comment expressing your conviction that usury and exploiting the most financially vulnerable among us is wrong.”
BWA launches new evangelism award
The Baptist World Alliance has opened the nominations process for its inaugural BWA-Kowloon International Baptist Church Evangelism Award, and also for its sixth Congress Quinquennial Human Rights Award. Both will be presented during the 2020 BWA Celebration in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The new award will be given every five years to recognize a Baptist congregation “effectively uniting evangelism and discipleship,” BWA said in an online announcement. The award “will be given to a church actively engaged in sharing the Gospel through an innovative approach that is biblically-based, Christ-centered, and culturally-sensitive.”
The award’s namesake, Kowloon International Baptist Church in Kowloon, Hong Kong, has been recognized for its more than 50 years of evangelism, BWA said.
“There are many different approaches to the way people see God and how people relate to God. Our evangelism needs to respect and honor these differences,” retired KIBC pastor Harry Lucenay said in the Alliance news release. “This award is for churches that have created innovative ways to share the gospel, being true to the Bible, true to their relationship that Jesus is the only way to be saved, and true to the culture.”