Daily Archives: April 1, 2008

Presiding Bishop: San Joaquin ”˜Could Become a Pattern for Other Places’

About 500 people from 18 congregations gathered at St. John the Baptist Church in Lodi, Calif., March 29 to declare themselves the representatives of The Episcopal Church in California’s Central Valley and to elect a provisional bishop.

Delegates were certified from 17 congregations previously belonging to the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin and one new mission congregation; 42 former Episcopal congregations had no delegates certified.

The action by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and the remaining parishioners could become a model for dealing with breakaway dioceses, Bishop Jefferts Schori told TLC during a break in the convention.

“This is the first time this has happened, but it could become a pattern for other places,” she said.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Presiding Bishop, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

Church attracts youth in time of religious uncertainty

At 29, Anderson is a young man, but the congregation facing him is even younger.

The pews at Praxis Church in Tempe are filled with people in their early 20s who look like they should be gathering at a college coffeehouse or bar.

Anderson stands before them as a distinct choice at a time of significant shifts in the religious landscape in this country.

Praxis – which means the practical application of a belief system – represents a rigorous dogma that challenges its congregation to accept Christ and to sin no more. Each verse of the Bible is taught as the inspired and infallible word of God.

Offering a clear spiritual voice has never been more important for churches than it is today because people are more willing than ever to shop for one that fits their religious needs.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Young Adults

Military wives spawn rise in surrogacy

Watch it all and the Newsweek cover story is here for your perusal.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Law & Legal Issues, Life Ethics, Marriage & Family

ABC: Live to 150, Can You Do It?

Take a guess. How many people are at least 100 years old in the United States? Would you believe more than 84,000 and climbing at an astonishing rate? By the time America’s baby boomers reach that milestone, there could be more than a million centenarians.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Health & Medicine, Science & Technology

Introducing Gmail Custom Time

Check it out pensively.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Blogging & the Internet

The Independent–USA 2008: The Great Depression

We knew things were bad on Wall Street, but on Main Street it may be worse. Startling official statistics show that as a new economic recession stalks the United States, a record number of Americans will shortly be depending on food stamps just to feed themselves and their families.

Dismal projections by the Congressional Budget Office in Washington suggest that in the fiscal year starting in October, 28 million people in the US will be using government food stamps to buy essential groceries, the highest level since the food assistance programme was introduced in the 1960s.

The increase ”“ from 26.5 million in 2007 ”“ is due partly to recent efforts to increase public awareness of the programme and also a switch from paper coupons to electronic debit cards. But above all it is the pressures being exerted on ordinary Americans by an economy that is suddenly beset by troubles. Housing foreclosures, accelerating jobs losses and fast-rising prices all add to the squeeze.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy

BabyBlue: Wielding power with the majority of a quorum

Some supporters of Katharine Jefferts Schori, now confronted with the call for investigations by the Bishop of Central Florida and the Bishop of South Carolina regarding the recent activities by the Episcopal Presiding Bishop and her lawyer, are now waving off those actions a mere “technical error” when Bishop Schori lead a majority of a quorum of the House of Bishops to depose the Bishop of Diocese of San Joquin and 88 year old retired Bishop William Cox.

Oops?

A “technical error” did not impose the equivalent of an ecclesiastical death sentence by manipulating the process to remove opponents with the majority of a quorum. That’s not a technical error – that is either duplicitousness or incompetence.

Earlier today she reiterated this point that she authorized the removal of her opponents through a majority of a quorum. 815’s press office reported that she said in a press conference that “We believe that we did the right thing,” and added that the consent came from “a clear majority of those present.” Yes, that’s what a quorum is. So she just stated the obvious – and it’s obviously what’s wrong here.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Presiding Bishop, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin, TEC Polity & Canons

Dith Pran RIP

Dith Pran, the Cambodian-born journalist whose experiences inspired the movie The Killing Fields, died Sunday at age 65. Pran coined the term “Killing Field” after seeing the remains of victims of Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge regime.

Listen to it all from NPR.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Asia, Movies & Television

Helen Mirren Traces Her Regal Russian Roots

Actress Helen Mirren has played countless royals ”” Cleopatra, Queen Charlotte, Queen Elizabeth I and II.

It’s no coincidence. Aristocracy is in the blood, she tells Renee Montagne. Even the working class women in her family were “queenly.”

Her new memoir, In the Frame: My Life in Words and Pictures, outlines her aristocratic beginnings, from a time before the Mirren family was known as such, until she found a very special “religion” ”” the theater.

No matter how perfectly she may play a queen, however, she admits that she still gets intimidated when she gets a script and sees the “enormous number of lines” she has to learn.

Listen to it all from NPR.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Movies & Television, Theatre/Drama/Plays

In San Joaquin St. Paul’s members break away from current Anglican church

About 40 former members of Visalia’s St. Paul’s Episcopal Church have decided to break away from the current Anglican church and reform their congregation as the Continuing Congregation of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church of Visalia, Calif.

The new congregation has been meeting in the cafeteria of Pinkham School. About 30 members attended services on Easter Sunday and about 40 last weekend.

The larger St. Paul’s Anglican Church remains with the San Joaquin Anglican Diocese.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

Installation and Rededication Service of Archbishop Thabo

There is so much more I could say about the vision I believe God is setting before us. It is a vision we must seek through rootedness in Christ Jesus, and ever-deepening engagement with Scripture and Sacraments; through the discipline of daily prayer and Bible-reading.

It is a vision that will touch every area of our lives. Let me share where it is already touching mine:

It is a vision of the restoration of dignity of each person, created by God and precious in God’s sight.

It is a vision of growing parish youth ministries, strengthened ecumenical ministry in tertiary education and Anglican schools helping address the skills shortages of our communities.

It is flourishing theological education, including through our residential college in Grahamstown and the Anglican House of Studies in Pietermaritzburg.

It is confident, competent, well-remunerated clergy, energising all God’s people in mission.

It is parishes as centres of peace and safety, offering shelter and nurture the vulnerable, especially children and youth: whether parishes in Cape Town, across South Africa, in Angola, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia and Swaziland, or in St Helena and Tristan da Cunha.

It is churches working in partnership with governments and civil society to breathe hope and transformation into every aspect of our communities and common life.

It is an Africa without conflict, and without the unjust structures that fuel injustice….

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces

The Presiding Bishop's Message for Easter 2008

Your Easter celebration undoubtedly has included lots of physical signs of new life — eggs, flowers, new green growth. As the Easter season continues, consider how your daily living can be an act of greater life for other creatures. How can you enact the new life we know in Jesus the Christ? In other words, how can you be the sacrament, the outward and visible sign, of the grace that you know in the resurrected Christ? How can your living let others live more abundantly?

The Judaeo-Christian tradition has been famously blamed for much of the current environmental crisis, particularly for our misreading of Genesis 1:28 as a charge to “fill the earth and subdue it.” Our forebears were so eager to distinguish their faith from the surrounding Canaanite religion and its concern for fertility that some of them worked overtime to separate us from an awareness of “the hand of God in the world about us,” especially in a reverence for creation. How can we love God if we do not love what God has made?

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter, Episcopal Church (TEC), Presiding Bishop

An Easter Message from CANA, 2008

For those first disciples it seemed as if their world had come to an end in the days leading up to that first Easter Sunday. The darkness of despair and the betrayal by the civil and religious authorities had extinguished their dreams. They had pinned their hopes on that wandering Rabbi who had emerged out of the wilderness. He had encouraged them to look forward to a new and brighter world where God’s reign would be made visible for all to see. But now it seemed to be all over. To add insult to injury when they buried the broken body of their beloved friend they did so in a borrowed tomb and blocked entrance with a rock. They could not even honor him in his death.

But that wasn’t the end of the story. The stone was rolled away and their nightmare came to an end. Jesus was gloriously raised from the dead. He didn’t simply survive it he overcame it. But it was not simply his life that was forever changed. All those who put their trust in Him have been given the same promise that death will no longer have the last word for us. Instead we will overcome it. Like him we will be given a new body and live forever in the closer presence of the One who loves us even more than life itself. But even that isn’t the end of the story. We have also been given the promise that the very same power that raised Jesus from the dead is now at work transforming the lives of his followers.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, CANA, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter

Newly elected Archbishop of Cape Town Thabo Makgoba was officially installed as SA Leader

Newly elected Archbishop of Cape Town Thabo Makgoba was on Sunday officially installed as the Church’s leader at a colourful ceremony attended by hundreds of well-wishers.

Makgoba, 47, is the youngest person to be elected as Archbishop of Cape Town, was greeted with ululation, Kudu horn sounds and endless clappings as he was anointed during a church service held at the ST Georges Cathedral in Cape Town.

Over a thousand people, including President Thabo Mbeki, former Archbishops and leading business attended the service.

Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Science and Technology Minister Mosibudi Mangena and top businessmen Saki Macozoma, were amongst the more than 1000 people who had attended.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces

Phillip Jensen on 'Limits of Fellowship' and why the Sydney (Australia) diocese is not going to Lamb

An interesting but not a short read.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Australia, Anglican Provinces