Daily Archives: March 14, 2010

Religion and Ethics Newsweekly–End of Life Decisions

DR. PHILIP HAWLEY (Grant Medical Center). We have people who are terminal on aggressive life support measures. Clearly they are not going to survive. We are spending all this time and money taking care of them. They are suffering, and it’s completely inappropriate.

DR. GORDON: What people need to do is talk about this with their family, with their physician, in advance. If they get a life-threatening illness, a lot of times they won’t be able to. Maybe they won’t be coherent, or they’ll be on a life-support machine. They can’t express their wishes, then they put their family in a bind, so they feel guilty, they don’t know for sure, and then what often happens is the sort of default is, well, let’s do everything, as much as possible.

ROLLIN: And sometimes families disagree about what to do. It’s hard for some to let go, which complicates things further.

DR. HAWLEY: If we could get families to deal with this we would not have this problem. We feel we as physicians should be able to step in and say we’ve got to stop the madness.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Death / Burial / Funerals, Health & Medicine, Life Ethics, Parish Ministry

Religion and Ethics Newsweekly–End of Life Decisions

DR. PHILIP HAWLEY (Grant Medical Center). We have people who are terminal on aggressive life support measures. Clearly they are not going to survive. We are spending all this time and money taking care of them. They are suffering, and it’s completely inappropriate.

DR. GORDON: What people need to do is talk about this with their family, with their physician, in advance. If they get a life-threatening illness, a lot of times they won’t be able to. Maybe they won’t be coherent, or they’ll be on a life-support machine. They can’t express their wishes, then they put their family in a bind, so they feel guilty, they don’t know for sure, and then what often happens is the sort of default is, well, let’s do everything, as much as possible.

ROLLIN: And sometimes families disagree about what to do. It’s hard for some to let go, which complicates things further.

DR. HAWLEY: If we could get families to deal with this we would not have this problem. We feel we as physicians should be able to step in and say we’ve got to stop the madness.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Death / Burial / Funerals, Health & Medicine, Life Ethics, Parish Ministry

Aggressive measures to treat diabetics make many of them worse, studies show

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Diabetics are at an unusually high risk of heart disease, heart attacks and strokes, so treating them intensively to sharply reduce blood pressure, cholesterol levels and sugar levels should be highly beneficial. But a decade of studies in thousands of patients show that is not the case.

Two new reports from a major nationwide trial called ACCORD released Sunday show that lowering either blood pressure or cholesterol levels below current guidelines do not provide additional benefit and, in fact, increase the risk of side effects. A third arm of the study, released two years ago, shows that lowering blood sugar levels excessively actually increases the risk of heart disease.

The results are very disappointing, researchers say, because they suggest that clinicians may have reached the limit for what they can do for diabetic patients without the development of totally new therapeutic approaches.

Read it all.

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

Aggressive measures to treat diabetics make many of them worse, studies show

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Diabetics are at an unusually high risk of heart disease, heart attacks and strokes, so treating them intensively to sharply reduce blood pressure, cholesterol levels and sugar levels should be highly beneficial. But a decade of studies in thousands of patients show that is not the case.

Two new reports from a major nationwide trial called ACCORD released Sunday show that lowering either blood pressure or cholesterol levels below current guidelines do not provide additional benefit and, in fact, increase the risk of side effects. A third arm of the study, released two years ago, shows that lowering blood sugar levels excessively actually increases the risk of heart disease.

The results are very disappointing, researchers say, because they suggest that clinicians may have reached the limit for what they can do for diabetic patients without the development of totally new therapeutic approaches.

Read it all.

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

(Times) Archbishop of Canterbury condemns evangelist 'bullies'

The Archbishop of Canterbury has condemned evangelist “bulies” who attempt to convert people of other faiths to Christianity.

Dr Rowan Williams said it was right to be suspicious of proselytism that involves “bullying, insensitive approaches” to other faiths.

In a speech at Guildford cathedral, Dr Williams criticised those who believed they had all the answers amd treated non-Christians as if their traditions of reflection and imagination were of no interest to anyone. “God save us form that kind of approach,” he said.

But he added: “God save us also from the nervousness about our own conviction that doesn’t allow us to say we speak about Jesus because we believe he matters, we believe he matters, because we believe that in him human beings find their peace, their destinies converge, and their dignities are fully honoured.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, Archbishop of Canterbury, Christology, Inter-Faith Relations, Theology

(Times) Archbishop of Canterbury condemns evangelist 'bullies'

The Archbishop of Canterbury has condemned evangelist “bulies” who attempt to convert people of other faiths to Christianity.

Dr Rowan Williams said it was right to be suspicious of proselytism that involves “bullying, insensitive approaches” to other faiths.

In a speech at Guildford cathedral, Dr Williams criticised those who believed they had all the answers amd treated non-Christians as if their traditions of reflection and imagination were of no interest to anyone. “God save us form that kind of approach,” he said.

But he added: “God save us also from the nervousness about our own conviction that doesn’t allow us to say we speak about Jesus because we believe he matters, we believe he matters, because we believe that in him human beings find their peace, their destinies converge, and their dignities are fully honoured.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, Archbishop of Canterbury, Christology, Inter-Faith Relations, Theology

Anglican Church of Canada Council of General Synod highlights

Ms. [Janet] Marshall gave a brief history of FWMC’s work on human sexuality this past triennium. She reminded COGS that they had already stated their preference for a dialogue-focused General Synod that upheld the value of local, national, and international relationships.

Ms. Marshall then walked COGS through FWMC’s proposed process for discussing issues of human sexuality at General Synod. In the proposed format, General Synod would begin by “faithful reporting” of FWMC’s work in plenary, then break out into smaller discussion groups. Feedback from these groups would be collated and shared in plenary. The smaller groups would meet again for the same process of synthesis and shared plenary feedback. Finally a resolution would be shaped out of this feedback, and General Synod would vote on it.

COGS members discussed the proposed process. Some responded very positively. Others asked for clarification on who would draft the final resolution and whether there would be enough time for this process on the General Synod agenda.

One council member proposed that a motion-affirming the local option for dioceses to approve same-sex blessings-be brought to General Synod. COGS discussed this motion, but ultimately decided not to forward it to General Synod.

Read it all.

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

Anglican Church of Canada Council of General Synod highlights

Ms. [Janet] Marshall gave a brief history of FWMC’s work on human sexuality this past triennium. She reminded COGS that they had already stated their preference for a dialogue-focused General Synod that upheld the value of local, national, and international relationships.

Ms. Marshall then walked COGS through FWMC’s proposed process for discussing issues of human sexuality at General Synod. In the proposed format, General Synod would begin by “faithful reporting” of FWMC’s work in plenary, then break out into smaller discussion groups. Feedback from these groups would be collated and shared in plenary. The smaller groups would meet again for the same process of synthesis and shared plenary feedback. Finally a resolution would be shaped out of this feedback, and General Synod would vote on it.

COGS members discussed the proposed process. Some responded very positively. Others asked for clarification on who would draft the final resolution and whether there would be enough time for this process on the General Synod agenda.

One council member proposed that a motion-affirming the local option for dioceses to approve same-sex blessings-be brought to General Synod. COGS discussed this motion, but ultimately decided not to forward it to General Synod.

Read it all.

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

Peter Faass offers his Thoughts

The Rev. Alistair Begg’s theological interpretation of the Gospel of John, (Messages of faith, Saturday) has been sadly all too pervasive in Christianity for centuries. To continue to read this Gospel, or any of the Biblical canon, in such a superficial manner that it leads the reader to believe that “those who claim to know and honor God, but deny the truth of the deity of Christ, are deluded and dangerous” is to perpetuate a serious untruth about the essential nature of Jesus and his message. This untruth has resulted in a host of egregious behaviors by Christians toward others, including virulent anti-Semitism over the last two millennia.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Christology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Parishes, Theology

Peter Faass offers his Thoughts

The Rev. Alistair Begg’s theological interpretation of the Gospel of John, (Messages of faith, Saturday) has been sadly all too pervasive in Christianity for centuries. To continue to read this Gospel, or any of the Biblical canon, in such a superficial manner that it leads the reader to believe that “those who claim to know and honor God, but deny the truth of the deity of Christ, are deluded and dangerous” is to perpetuate a serious untruth about the essential nature of Jesus and his message. This untruth has resulted in a host of egregious behaviors by Christians toward others, including virulent anti-Semitism over the last two millennia.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Christology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Parishes, Theology

America's Foreign-Owned National Debt–Is it a threat to the U.S. economy?

As long as the U.S. national debt is entirely denominated in dollars, there is no risk that we will run into the sort of financial crisis that small countries often run into. What gets them into trouble isn’t the debt per se, but an inability to acquire sufficient foreign exchange with their own currency to service it. While the U.S. Treasury has never issued bonds denominated in foreign currencies, it is conceivable that it could be forced to do so if the dollar falls sharply and foreign demand for U.S. bonds wanes. That will be the point at which our debt problem becomes more than theoretical and we are really on the road to national bankruptcy.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Asia, China, Credit Markets, Economy, Foreign Relations, The National Deficit, The U.S. Government

America's Foreign-Owned National Debt–Is it a threat to the U.S. economy?

As long as the U.S. national debt is entirely denominated in dollars, there is no risk that we will run into the sort of financial crisis that small countries often run into. What gets them into trouble isn’t the debt per se, but an inability to acquire sufficient foreign exchange with their own currency to service it. While the U.S. Treasury has never issued bonds denominated in foreign currencies, it is conceivable that it could be forced to do so if the dollar falls sharply and foreign demand for U.S. bonds wanes. That will be the point at which our debt problem becomes more than theoretical and we are really on the road to national bankruptcy.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Asia, China, Credit Markets, Economy, Foreign Relations, The National Deficit, The U.S. Government

In Fla. Representatives of different religions come together for an interfaith panel discussion

When it comes to religion, people of faith are passionate about their beliefs, and at times, that passion can lead to conflicts with others of different religions.

However, sometimes with understanding can come peace.

With that idea in mind, the Solo Flight Singles Group of New Covenant United Methodist Church decided to host an event that would promote peace and understanding between faiths.

The group gathered together representatives from five different faiths ”” Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Jewish and Christian ”” for an interfaith panel discussion at the church Tuesday evening.

“I think it’s important that we try to understand everyone,” said Bev Diaz, coordinator of the event. “We’re all coming to realize the world is getting smaller. We’re coming into contact with more faiths, and to have more peace, we need to understand and tolerate each other.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Adult Education, Inter-Faith Relations, Methodist, Other Churches, Parish Ministry

In Fla. Representatives of different religions come together for an interfaith panel discussion

When it comes to religion, people of faith are passionate about their beliefs, and at times, that passion can lead to conflicts with others of different religions.

However, sometimes with understanding can come peace.

With that idea in mind, the Solo Flight Singles Group of New Covenant United Methodist Church decided to host an event that would promote peace and understanding between faiths.

The group gathered together representatives from five different faiths ”” Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Jewish and Christian ”” for an interfaith panel discussion at the church Tuesday evening.

“I think it’s important that we try to understand everyone,” said Bev Diaz, coordinator of the event. “We’re all coming to realize the world is getting smaller. We’re coming into contact with more faiths, and to have more peace, we need to understand and tolerate each other.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Adult Education, Inter-Faith Relations, Methodist, Other Churches, Parish Ministry

Vatican: Pope was 'completely extraneous' to Munich sex abuse decision

Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See’s Press Office, released a statement on Saturday morning in which he made three “observations” regarding sexual abuse by people and in institutions of the Catholic Church. He also addressed dismissed as unfounded attempts to link the Pope to a decision to transfer a priest found to have committed sexual abuse when Benedict XVI was Archbishop of Munich.

The first of the three “observations” made by Fr. Lombardi was to point out that the “line taken” by the German Bishops’ Conference has been confirmed as the correct path to confront the problem in its different aspects.

Fr. Lombardi included some elements of the statement made by Archbishop Robert Zollitsch at a Friday press conference following his audience with the Pope. The Vatican spokesman highlighted the approach established by the German bishops to respond to the possible abuses: “recognizing the truth and helping the victims, reinforcing the preventions and collaborating constructively with the authorities – including those of the state judiciaries – for the common good of society.”

Read it all.

Posted in * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Europe, Germany, Other Churches, Pope Benedict XVI, Roman Catholic