Daily Archives: October 16, 2009

Religious Intelligence: Micro health system launched by Anglicans

People on very low incomes in the developing world may soon be able to access health insurance thanks to the Anglican Health Network (AHN).

Based in Geneva, AHN announced 6 October that it will establish a new pilot project to test the concept of providing a ‘micro health insurance plan’ in an African setting. The AHN was established at the Anglican Consultative Council meeting in May, 2009. Its key ambition is to support Anglican health providers to improve health care in the developing world.

“In an era when faith communities have been rediscovered as key health services providers, we are pleased to be leading this innovative approach to low income health care” said the Rev Paul Holley, President and Co-founder of AHN.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, - Anglican: Latest News, Africa, Europe, Health & Medicine

Many religious institutions get serious about security

Every few months, more than 100 security volunteers at the Rock Church in Point Loma run through drills to prepare for a gunman attack, a kidnapping at the nursery or disorderly outsiders.

That church isn’t alone in fearing violence and vandalism.

Once deemed sacred sanctuaries off-limits to criminals, religious institutions are becoming vulnerable targets to shootings, thefts and protests because of their low-tech security and open environment.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Violence

Mike Littwin–In Balloon Boy epic, what's reality?

Welcome to Balloon Boy, the Faux Reality Rescue show, with the mystifyingly happy ending.

In fact, now that it’s all over ”” and the little boy is safe and mostly sound ”” I’m not sure what I saw or what the ending actually was.

Did life imitate art or did art imitate life or is it possible anymore to tell the difference?

What a bizarre story. Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Media

Post-Gazette: Rival Episcopal dioceses try to resolve large issues

“The judge put a fairly tight deadline on getting things moving … and to present some evidence of what the orderly transition would be. We intend to fully cooperate with that,” said Rich Creehan, a spokesman for the Episcopal diocese.

Anglican leaders have asked their clergy to fast and pray this week over whether to appeal.

“We were dismayed and surprised by the decision,” said the Rev. Mary Hays, canon to the ordinary of the Anglican diocese. “But there’s a lot to consider in an appeal. Financial resources and energy resources are required, so we have to consider whether we want to be side-tracked from our mission, which has nothing to do with litigation.”

The Episcopal trustees reported that in July the total endowment was worth about $17 million, although some of the funds were held for parishes that now belong to the Anglican diocese. The funds have been frozen due to the litigation.

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

RNS: Roman Catholic Bishops may pull health care support over abortion, immigrants

The nation’s Catholic bishops have threatened to pull their support for health care reform unless their concerns about abortion and access for immigrants are addressed by lawmakers.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, which supports universal access to health care as a “basic human right,” had been supportive of efforts to reform the health care system, but is concerned about taxpayer-funded abortions.

Read the whole thing.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --The 2009 American Health Care Reform Debate, Health & Medicine, Life Ethics, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic

The Pro-Prolocutor of the Convocation of Canterbury on the Committee Proposal on Women Bishops

One thing is certain: alongside the wish of its majority that women should be admitted to the episcopate, the Synod has also insisted on provision for those who, in conscience, could not go along with this development. It is difficult to estimate the size of this minority, but more than a third of the Synod might vote against any final legisla­tion, should this provision not meet the needs of those for whom it was intended ”” and herein lies the difficulty.

It is all too easy to categorise these groups as Anglo-Catholic or conservative Evangelical; but a variety of people from all traditions remain unconvinced that this is the mind of Christ for his Church, as revealed in scripture and tradi­tion.

Read it all (you need to scroll down a good ways, this one is the last one toward the bottom of the page).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Women

The Bishop of Salisbury on the Committee Proposal on Women Bishops

THE news that the revision committee has chosen not to explore the option of the single clause with a statutory code of practice any further, and has gone for “certain functions to be invested in bishops by statute” will strike despair into the hearts of many. What the committee is proposing takes a step back from the position Synod thought it had reached in July 2008.

My concerns are on several levels. First, these proposals appear to institutionalise mistrust in legislation: the opponents of women’s ordination do not trust the bishops to make proper provision. Is that really what we have come to?

Second, it destroys the ecclesiology of the Church of England, making it legitimate to “choose your own bishop”. Are there to be any limits as to the grounds on which you might petition to do this?

Read it all (you need to scroll down a good ways).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Women

Inclusive Church Press Release: The C of E Revision Committee's Decision Oct 2009

Inclusive Church is deeply disturbed by the recent announcement of the Revision Committee. It has moved away from the expressed will of General Synod in July 2008 – that there should be legislation to consecrate women as bishops on the same terms as men with an additional code of practice containing arrangements for those who do not accept the authority of bishops who are women.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Women

Church Times: Synod’s women-bishops committee draws back from code of practice

SUPPORTERS of women bishops have expressed shock at a decision by the revision committee for the draft legislation not to go further down the route of a statutory code of practice. Traditionalists say that the change of direction proposed does not go far enough.

The General Synod voted in July 2008 for “special arrangements”, embodied in a statutory code of practice, to be drawn up by the legis­lative drafting group.

The Bishops supported the motion by 28 to 12; the Clergy by 124 to 44; and the Laity by 111 to 68 (News, 11 July 2008). The full Synod had its first consideration of the draft legislation last February, and voted to commit it to a revision com­mittee of the Synod.

The committee, chaired by the Bishop of Manchester, the Rt Revd Nigel McCulloch, said in a statement last week that it had received nearly 300 submissions, including 100 from Synod members.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Women

Local Group Opposed to Direction of the Diocese of South Carolina Places an Ad

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

A Local Paper Editorial–Wanted: A jobs recovery

The inherent contradiction in the term “jobless recovery” continues to cast a shadow on overdue good economic news. The Dow Jones Industrial average closed above 10,000 Wednesday for the first time in more than a year. But the national unemployment rate of 9.8 percent in September was the highest in more than a quarter century.

As The Associated Press reported Thursday, though the economic recovery apparently has begun, it “is widely expected to be weak, particularly when it comes to employment.”

And as The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday, about 30,000 jobs “have been directly created or saved by contractors who received money” from the $787 billion federal stimulus package that President Barack Obama signed into law eight months ago. That’s far fewer than the 1 million jobs promised by the White House — and not nearly enough to make a dent in those ominous unemployment figures.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The Fiscal Stimulus Package of 2009

The Latest Episcopal Church Statistics

Read it carefully and read it all..

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Data

NPR–N.C. Program A Model For Health Overhaul?

ROSE HOBAN: Every day is busy for nurse Juanita Larkens(ph).

Ms. JUANITA LARKENS (Nurse): Good afternoon. This is Juanita. How can I help you?

HOBAN: She’s one of three nurses who manage Medicaid patients at Goldsboro Pediatrics. Goldsboro is a growing town surrounded by old tobacco fields that are being converted to suburbs. About 15,000 Medicaid-eligible children come to the clinic.

Ms. LARKENS: All of them are not known to us, I mean, but those that are introduced to us by whatever means, we will attempt to help them if we can.

Listen to it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, --The 2009 American Health Care Reform Debate, Health & Medicine, Politics in General, State Government

Mark Thompson: What does it mean to be Anglican? II

I have suggested that authentic Anglicanism is Catholic, Protestant, Evangelical and Reformed. But what do we mean when we say that Anglicanism is truly ‘Catholic’?

The term ‘Catholic’ is open to considerable misunderstanding. Almost five centuries of use to distinguish the Roman church from evangelical Protestantism has made it difficult for many to understand it apart from these institutional overtones. To suggest that a Protestant denomination might be ‘Catholic’ seems like a betrayal of its distinctiveness or, at best, ecclesiological confusion. One is either Catholic or Protestant, certainly not both together. This is at least part of the popular Protestant unease with retaining the word ‘Catholic’ to describe the church in contemporary translations of the Creeds.

In addition, since at least the nineteenth century, the term has been used to describe an emphasis within certain strands of Protestantism which has re-centred Christian corporate life on the sacraments, priesthood, notions of apostolic succession, and the like. In this way ‘Catholic’ describes one tradition within Anglicanism (alongside, and in certain tension with, evangelical and charismatic traditions). One is either Catholic or Evangelical, certainly not both together. A century or more of tension between the catholic and evangelical traditions within Anglicanism has made it difficult for some to accept the word ‘Catholic’ as an appropriate description of authentic Anglicanism.

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

Religious Intelligence: Church of England facing $70 million loss

The Church of England appears set to take a $70 million loss in the US real estate market, losing its entire investment in New York City’s Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village apartment complex.

On Oct 14 the Wall Street Journal reported the partnership venture led by Tishman Speyer Properties that purchased the 56-building, 11,000-unit residential complex in lower Manhattan was in danger of default. As of the end of September, the Journal reported, the partnership had $33.7 million left of $400 million in interest reserves to service its debt. With a ”˜burn rate’ of $16 million per month, real estate analysts predict the project will be in default by year’s end.

At the height of the Manhattan property market, the Church Commissioners of the Church of England invested $70 million as equity partners in the project, alongside the California Public Employees Retirement System which invested $500 million, and the Florida State Board of Administration which committed $250 million to the deal.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Economy, Housing/Real Estate Market, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--