Daily Archives: September 10, 2008

The Global South Anglican Theological Network – Canterbury Declaration

5. We believe at this present critical juncture in the history of the Anglican Communion it is important for churches outside the traditional Anglo-American trajectories to offer a distinct and critical theological voice: speaking from the context of the global South, offering a theological articulation on issues facing the Communion as we see and read it to the deliberations in the Communion, and giving expression to the trajectories of God’s divine work in our histories.

6. We recognise that we need to draw strength from one another’s insights from the diverse socio-political contexts we serve, and to rediscover and share together how we can best uphold and pass on the faith once delivered to the saints.

7. We commit ourselves to work for the common good of the Communion, with the view that it would rediscover its moorings in the faith and worship of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church of Jesus Christ, and that our churches would be a sign of hope and reconciliation in this broken world.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Global South Churches & Primates, Theology

Few training in Medicine on general internist path

Medical students are shying away from careers in general internal medicine, which could exacerbate the U.S. doctor shortage expected by the time the youngest Baby Boomers head into their senior years, researchers report today.

Only 2% of 1,177 respondents to a survey of students at 11 U.S. medical schools said they planned to pursue careers in general internal medicine, according to the new study.

General internists provide a large portion of care for older and chronically ill patients, the authors write in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Yet, the rate of medical students opting for general internal medicine is declining as the number of older adults rises, they write.

According to one estimate, the USA will have 200,000 fewer doctors overall than it needs by 2020, according to the new report. Meanwhile, the number of older Americans is expected to nearly double between 2005 and 2030.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Health & Medicine

Ephraim Radner: Truthful Language and Orderly Separation

The Anglican Communion is currently pursuing a number of activities in response to the acrimonious struggle over sexual teaching and discipline within our churches. These activities have been encouraged by the Communion’s leadership, including at the recent Lambeth Conference. I have, to various degrees, been a supporter of these activities, not least because I have trusted those who have promoted these means towards ecclesial healing. I am increasingly skeptical, however, that the way these activities have been framed ”“ descriptively and practically ”“ represents the true nature of our disputes.

Categories like “moratoria” and “reception” and “listening”, for instance, are now prominent elements in our strategic ecclesial discussions. Unfortunately, they no longer appear to be useful categories, in large part because they do not accurately reflect the actual relationship of expectation and possibility that the disputing parties hold, one to another and with respect to their own commitments. When one party says, while responding to the request for a “moratorium” on specific actions, “yes we will consider it; but there is no going back on our underlying commitments”; and another party says at the same time, “yes we will consider it; but only on the condition that you others give up your practical commitments”, then the very category of “moratorium” functions in very different ways in each case. Similarly, when “reception” is a “process” that seeks to discern the Christian authenticity of an innovative practice, but also does so by the very means of rooting that practice within the life of the church in different areas, the notion that discernment has a possibly restraining role to play seems practically undercut. Or when “listening” presumes an ecclesial practice even as it refuses to evaluate that practice, one is not so much listening as receiving justification ex post facto.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Analysis, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Windsor Report / Process

LA Times: Palin bounce has Democrats off balance

The emergence of Sarah Palin as a political force in the presidential race has left many top Democrats fretting that, just two weeks after their convention ended on an emotional high, Barack Obama’s campaign has suddenly lost its stride.

Obama has responded aggressively this week to Palin’s presence on the Republican ticket, using TV ads and campaign rallies to attack her contention that she is a political reformer who will take on the Washington establishment — a role Obama has long claimed as his alone.

But some Democrats are now worried about the perils of Obama’s strategy, saying that his campaign, instead of engaging the Alaska governor, should avoid any move that draws more attention to her and could enhance her appeal among the white, blue-collar voters who remain cool to Obama’s candidacy.

A series of new polls suggests that Palin has given a major boost to John McCain’s campaign, exciting the GOP base, winning over white women and all but erasing Obama’s lead.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, US Presidential Election 2008

Irondequoit church, Rochester Episcopal diocese clash in state court over property

Lawyers for an Anglican church in Irondequoit and for the Episcopal diocese of Rochester differed before the state’s highest court Tuesday on whether an agreement made between the two parties carries the force of law in New York.

Nineteen years ago, All Saints Church signed a document that placed all of its property in trust for the diocese and the national church. The church has since separated from the national church because it disagreed with the ordination of a gay bishop.

Eugene VanVoorhis, a lawyer for All Saints, said the church doesn’t want to turn its property over to the diocese. “Ecclesiastical documents are not property documents,” he said in an argument before the state Court of Appeals.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts

New Zealand Church leaders support 'Open Letter'

The Reverend Brian Turner, Methodist Church, Rodney Macanna, Baptist Churches of New Zealand, and the Right Reverend Pamela Tankersley, Presbyterian Church, all described the period before an election as a unique opportunity to intensify discussion about the type of society we live in.

“The affect that poverty has on vulnerable New Zealanders is an issue we need to bring to the fore as part of the call we have as Christians to serve those on the margins of society,” said Pamela Tankersley.

“A question that we need to ask ourselves is whether we are striving hard enough as a nation to put aside self-interest and to find a stronger collective social conscience in 2008,” said Brian Turner.

“When our politicians talk about the policies they plan to introduce we want them to talk about he extent to which those policies can be considered just and compassionate, and we want them to explicitly address the issue of reducing poverty,” said Rodney Macann.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Australia / NZ, Ecumenical Relations, Poverty, Religion & Culture

Steve Wood and the Rectors of other large TEC Parishes to meet with the PB

I’m not sure which of my colleagues from the largest congregations will be attending, nor do I know the agenda. The email described the gathering with these words: “The idea behind this gathering stems from the realization that you, as the pastor of one of the largest congregations, have a unique view on the needs and possibilities of the Church at this time. The hope is that this is not simply a one-time experience, but the beginning of further discussions, in whatever form they take. The reason for the timing of the gathering is intentional, as there may be issues that have emerged from the Lambeth Conference that could be of relevance in our discussions. “

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Parishes

California Bishops to Fight State Marriage Amendment

Bishop Marc Andrus of the Diocese of California announced that he will deliver a statement signed by all six California diocesan bishops of The Episcopal Church that calls on Episcopalians to defeat a state ballot initiative that would amend the state’s constitution to read “only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.”

In May, the California Supreme Court overturned by a 4-3 margin state laws restricting marriage to heterosexual couples.

Bishop Andrus will hold a press conference on Sept. 10 at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. He will be joined by assisting Bishop Steven Charleston of California and Bishop Barry Beisner of Northern California. Earlier that day, clergy and lay leaders from throughout southern Califorina will join Bishop J. Jon Bruno of Los Angeles, who will hold his own press conference at the Los Angeles Cathedral Center.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops

Indiana High School's Purse Ban Rankles Students

An Indiana high school is making a bold move to create a safer environment for students — they’ve banned students from carrying bags including purses, during the school day. Female students are upset about the changes.

CBS 2 Northwest Indiana Bureau Chief Pamela Jones reports the principal and district administration of Hanover Central School in Cedar Lake would not discuss the matter.

But parents say the bag ban has actually part of the policy here for about three years. It’s just being enforced now. Students are buzzing about a rule at the school that bans purses.

“It’s kind of stupid,” said junior Natalie Goetz.

They say the principal made an announcement on the first day of school notifying students that all purses — and backpacks, for that matter — would have to be left in lockers.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Education, Teens / Youth

Roman Catholic Bishops criticize Biden’s abortion remarks for flawed reasoning

Turning his remarks to Sen. Biden, Bishop [Robert] Morlino said he and the senator shared as their hometown Scranton, Pennsylvania.

“I am positive of what Sen. Biden was taught in Scranton. And it’s the same thing that I was taught,” he declared.

While Rep. Pelosi may be confused, he said, he claimed Sen. Biden doesn’t understand the difference between “religious faith and natural law.”

“Any human being — regardless of his faith, his religious practice or having no faith — any human being can reason to the fact that human life from conception unto natural death is sacred,” he argued. “Biology — not faith, not philosophy, not any kind of theology — Biology tells us, science [says], that at the moment of conception there exists a unique individual of the human species.”

“It’s not a matter of what I might believe. What my faith might teach me,” he said.
“Sen. Biden has an obligation to know that. And he doesn’t know it.”
Charging that some theologians, priests, and bishops also allowed Biden to become confused, Bishop Morlino then criticized politicians for confusing the Catholic faithful.

“They’re supposed to believe in separation of church and state. They’re violating the separation of church and state by confusing people about what I have an obligation to teach,” he charged, though he did not hold them culpable.

“They themselves were confused after the Council and I don’t blame them for that. Bishops allowed it, theologians did it, some priests did it, and in Canada even some bishops did it.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, Life Ethics, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, US Presidential Election 2008

BusinessWeek: Fannie and Freddie's New Derivatives Cliffhanger

In taking over Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE), Henry M. Paulson Jr. and the U.S. Treasury Dept. cleared up uncertainty surrounding the companies’ common stock, preferred shares, and senior and subordinated debt. But Uncle Sam’s intervention also triggered a default event, according to the International Swaps & Derivatives Assn., and now roughly $1.4 trillion in outstanding credit-default swaps, a type of derivative contract, must be settled.

You remember the credit-default swap (CDS). It began life as an “insurance policy” that big players such as hedge funds took out to hedge investment risks. Over time, however, the CDS became a tool that big funds, financial institutions, and others used as a way to place bets on whether a company would go bankrupt. They’re contracts negotiated between two parties and””unlike insurance policies””there’s no regulator verifying that companies can actually make good on the $62 trillion of swaps outstanding.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Housing/Real Estate Market

The PJEC Notices Something Interesting about recent Media Coverage of the 2008 Pres. Campaign

For the first time in the three months since the general election campaign began, John McCain last week generated more coverage than Barack Obama. But he was still outshone by another newsmaker during the GOP convention””his own running mate.

Sarah Palin, the first woman on a Republican ticket, was the focus of feverish attention as the media tried to find out more about her, convey her record and biography, and calculate her impact on the race. For the week of Sept. 1-7, Palin was a significant or dominant factor in 60% of the campaign stories, according to the Campaign Coverage Index from the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. McCain was fairly close behind, a significant or dominant factor in 52% of the stories.

Put another way, Palin enjoyed more coverage as a VP candidate during the GOP convention than Obama did a week earlier when he became the first person of color to accept the nomination for president of a major party. With the other ticket making most of the news, Obama was a focus in 22% of the stories last week, by far his lowest week of coverage in the general election season. His running mate Joe Biden registered at 2%.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Media, US Presidential Election 2008

Sometimes a Picture is worth 1000 words

This is really, really sad.

Update: Back on June 5th, people tried to raise questions but a CNBC segment far too uncritically backed the CEO.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Stock Market

World wants Obama as president: poll

US Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama may be struggling to nudge ahead of his Republican rival in polls at home, but people across the world want him in the White House, a BBC poll said.

All 22 countries covered in the poll would prefer to see Senator Obama elected US president ahead of Republican John McCain.

In 17 of the 22 nations, people expect relations between the US and the rest of the world to improve if Senator Obama wins.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Globalization, US Presidential Election 2008

Details on TEC Loyalist, 815 Plans to Depose Bishop Jack Iker, Take Property in Fort Worth

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Fort Worth