Daily Archives: March 16, 2010

House of Bishops to Meet: Same Sex Unions, Covenant, Episcopacy, Emergent Church Among Topics

More than 115 bishops of The Episcopal Church will gather for the House of Bishops spring retreat meeting March 19 ”“ 24 in Camp Allen, Texas.

The theme of the gathering will be The Church for the 21st Century and, as such, discussions will focus on opportunities and challenges to today’s ministry along with pioneering topics and forward-thinking proposals.

“Our spring gathering will focus specifically on both the nature of episcopacy and on the evangelistic challenges/opportunities presented by the emergent church movement,” Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori wrote to the bishops.

Well-known authors and lecturers Diana Butler-Bass and Phyllis Tickle along with others will lead discussions about the fast-growing Emergent Church movement. Other discussions will focus on the groundbreaking Around One Table report and the Anglican Covenant.

Read it all.

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

House of Bishops to Meet: Same Sex Unions, Covenant, Episcopacy, Emergent Church Among Topics

More than 115 bishops of The Episcopal Church will gather for the House of Bishops spring retreat meeting March 19 ”“ 24 in Camp Allen, Texas.

The theme of the gathering will be The Church for the 21st Century and, as such, discussions will focus on opportunities and challenges to today’s ministry along with pioneering topics and forward-thinking proposals.

“Our spring gathering will focus specifically on both the nature of episcopacy and on the evangelistic challenges/opportunities presented by the emergent church movement,” Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori wrote to the bishops.

Well-known authors and lecturers Diana Butler-Bass and Phyllis Tickle along with others will lead discussions about the fast-growing Emergent Church movement. Other discussions will focus on the groundbreaking Around One Table report and the Anglican Covenant.

Read it all.

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

Notable and Quotable

Do what you will, there is going to be some benevolence, as well as some malice, in your patient’s soul. The great thing is to direct the malice to his immediate neighbours whom he meets every day and to thrust his benevolence out to the remote circumference, to people he does not know. The malice thus becomes wholly real and the benevolence largely imaginary. There is no good at all in inflaming his hatred of Germans if, at the same time, a pernicious habit of charity is growing up between him and his mother, his employer, and the man he meets in the train. Think of your man as a series of concentric circles, his will being the innermost, his intellect coming next, and finally his fantasy. You can hardly hope, at once, to exclude from all the circles everything that smells of the Enemy: but you must keep on shoving all the virtues outward till they are finally located in the circle of fantasy, and all the desirable qualities inward into the Will. It is only in so far as they reach the will and are there embodied in habits that the virtues are really fatal to us.

–C.S. Lewis, Screwtape Letters, letter VI

Posted in Pastoral Theology, Theology

Notable and Quotable

Do what you will, there is going to be some benevolence, as well as some malice, in your patient’s soul. The great thing is to direct the malice to his immediate neighbours whom he meets every day and to thrust his benevolence out to the remote circumference, to people he does not know. The malice thus becomes wholly real and the benevolence largely imaginary. There is no good at all in inflaming his hatred of Germans if, at the same time, a pernicious habit of charity is growing up between him and his mother, his employer, and the man he meets in the train. Think of your man as a series of concentric circles, his will being the innermost, his intellect coming next, and finally his fantasy. You can hardly hope, at once, to exclude from all the circles everything that smells of the Enemy: but you must keep on shoving all the virtues outward till they are finally located in the circle of fantasy, and all the desirable qualities inward into the Will. It is only in so far as they reach the will and are there embodied in habits that the virtues are really fatal to us.

–C.S. Lewis, Screwtape Letters, letter VI

Posted in Pastoral Theology, Theology

Living Church–Liturgist: Don’t Lose “Balanced Eucharistic Piety”

Thomas Cranmer (1489”“1556), the martyred Archbishop of Canterbury who wrote and compiled the first two editions of The Book of Common Prayer, wanted laity ”” not just priests ”” to participate in the Holy Eucharist regularly, as was done in Jesus’ time.

“The 1979 prayer book has gotten us back to our Reformation roots and to our ancient roots,” [the Rev. Dr. Patrick Malloy, professor of liturgics at the General Theological Seminary in New York]… said.

Returning to early Christian roots is beneficial and can help parishioners know that they, as well as priests, can draw near to the holy, Malloy said. He cautioned, however, that with more frequent celebration of the Eucharist some reverence and humility, the “balanced Eucharistic piety” that should attend the sacred, may have been lost.

“I cannot read your souls, so I don’t know if the fact that the Eucharist is now the normative Sunday pattern has changed people,” Malloy said. “Cranmer did not take Communion lightly. Today, I fear that sometimes ”¦ many of us do approach the sacrament very lightly.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), Eucharist, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Sacramental Theology, Theology

Living Church–Liturgist: Don’t Lose “Balanced Eucharistic Piety”

Thomas Cranmer (1489”“1556), the martyred Archbishop of Canterbury who wrote and compiled the first two editions of The Book of Common Prayer, wanted laity ”” not just priests ”” to participate in the Holy Eucharist regularly, as was done in Jesus’ time.

“The 1979 prayer book has gotten us back to our Reformation roots and to our ancient roots,” [the Rev. Dr. Patrick Malloy, professor of liturgics at the General Theological Seminary in New York]… said.

Returning to early Christian roots is beneficial and can help parishioners know that they, as well as priests, can draw near to the holy, Malloy said. He cautioned, however, that with more frequent celebration of the Eucharist some reverence and humility, the “balanced Eucharistic piety” that should attend the sacred, may have been lost.

“I cannot read your souls, so I don’t know if the fact that the Eucharist is now the normative Sunday pattern has changed people,” Malloy said. “Cranmer did not take Communion lightly. Today, I fear that sometimes ”¦ many of us do approach the sacrament very lightly.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), Eucharist, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Sacramental Theology, Theology

The Archbishop of York Is Interviewed by Radio New Zealand during his recent N.Z. visit

Listen to it all (a little under 40 minutes) (and, yes, it requires an audio player). There are a lot of topics covered including growing up in Uganda, his role as Archbishop of York, mutliculturalism, Zimbabwe, and the Anglican same sex union debate–KSH.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of York John Sentamu

The Archbishop of York Is Interviewed by Radio New Zealand during his recent N.Z. visit

Listen to it all (a little under 40 minutes) (and, yes, it requires an audio player). There are a lot of topics covered including growing up in Uganda, his role as Archbishop of York, mutliculturalism, Zimbabwe, and the Anglican same sex union debate–KSH.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of York John Sentamu

The Archbishop of Canterbury receives the Russian Order of Friendship

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, was… [recently] presented with the Russian Order of Friendship, for his “outstanding contribution to the cooperation and friendly relations between Russia and the UK”

The honour, which was awarded by Russian presidential decree by President Dmitry Medvedev, was presented by the Russian Ambassador to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Mr Yury Fedotov, who said “What the Archbishop is doing helps tremendously to establish better understanding and to set a better climate in relations between Russia and the UK.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, Archbishop of Canterbury, Europe, Russia

The Archbishop of Canterbury receives the Russian Order of Friendship

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, was… [recently] presented with the Russian Order of Friendship, for his “outstanding contribution to the cooperation and friendly relations between Russia and the UK”

The honour, which was awarded by Russian presidential decree by President Dmitry Medvedev, was presented by the Russian Ambassador to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Mr Yury Fedotov, who said “What the Archbishop is doing helps tremendously to establish better understanding and to set a better climate in relations between Russia and the UK.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, Archbishop of Canterbury, Europe, Russia

The Economist–Barack Obama's abortion drama

It could all come down to abortion. Health-care reform hangs in the balance. Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the House of Representatives, is desperately trying to round up the last few votes. If the House passes a bill the Senate passed in December, it can then be tweaked through the “reconciliation” process and sent to President Barack Obama for signature. But every single House Republican is likely to vote no, so Ms Pelosi needs 216 Democratic votes (out of 253) for a majority. This is proving surprisingly hard. Among the holdouts are a dozen or so pro-life Democrats, several of them Midwestern Catholics, who object to the abortion provisions in the Senate bill.

Thanks to the Supreme Court, abortion has been legally protected since 1973 and neither Congress nor any state has the power to ban it. But a law called the Hyde amendment bars federal funding for abortion, except in cases of rape or incest, or to save the life of the mother. The question now is whether Obamacare will use taxpayers’ money to subsidise abortion more widely. Mr Obama insists that it will not. Under his plan, many individuals and small businesses will buy subsidised health insurance through state-sponsored exchanges. Under the Senate bill, they would only be able to obtain abortion coverage through these exchanges if they paid for it with a separate, unsubsidised, cheque. Thus, federal dollars would be kept out of abortion clinics, say the bill’s supporters. But many pro-lifers are not convinced. So the version of the health bill that was passed by the House would have required those who wanted abortion coverage to buy a completely separate insurance policy. The Democrat who wrote the House abortion provision, Bart Stupak, says he won’t back the Senate bill. Several other pro-life Democrats may also balk.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, --The 2009 American Health Care Reform Debate, Evangelicals, Health & Medicine, House of Representatives, Life Ethics, Office of the President, Other Churches, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Senate

The Economist–Barack Obama's abortion drama

It could all come down to abortion. Health-care reform hangs in the balance. Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the House of Representatives, is desperately trying to round up the last few votes. If the House passes a bill the Senate passed in December, it can then be tweaked through the “reconciliation” process and sent to President Barack Obama for signature. But every single House Republican is likely to vote no, so Ms Pelosi needs 216 Democratic votes (out of 253) for a majority. This is proving surprisingly hard. Among the holdouts are a dozen or so pro-life Democrats, several of them Midwestern Catholics, who object to the abortion provisions in the Senate bill.

Thanks to the Supreme Court, abortion has been legally protected since 1973 and neither Congress nor any state has the power to ban it. But a law called the Hyde amendment bars federal funding for abortion, except in cases of rape or incest, or to save the life of the mother. The question now is whether Obamacare will use taxpayers’ money to subsidise abortion more widely. Mr Obama insists that it will not. Under his plan, many individuals and small businesses will buy subsidised health insurance through state-sponsored exchanges. Under the Senate bill, they would only be able to obtain abortion coverage through these exchanges if they paid for it with a separate, unsubsidised, cheque. Thus, federal dollars would be kept out of abortion clinics, say the bill’s supporters. But many pro-lifers are not convinced. So the version of the health bill that was passed by the House would have required those who wanted abortion coverage to buy a completely separate insurance policy. The Democrat who wrote the House abortion provision, Bart Stupak, says he won’t back the Senate bill. Several other pro-life Democrats may also balk.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, --The 2009 American Health Care Reform Debate, Evangelicals, Health & Medicine, House of Representatives, Life Ethics, Office of the President, Other Churches, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Senate

WSJ Front Page: Israel Rift Threatens U.S. Plans In Mideast

Israel signaled it won’t halt its building plans in the disputed territory of east Jerusalem, deepening a rift with the U.S. that threatens efforts to contain Iran and other American security goals in the Middle East.

Officials on both sides fear relations between the two allies are at their worst point in decades, after Israel scuttled hope for a new round of peace talks by announcing new settlement plans last week during a visit by Vice President Joseph Biden. That led to an extraordinary public rebuke of Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Mr. Netanyahu apologized for the timing, but he has declined to retract the plans for the settlements and others that have become among the biggest obstacles to peace talks. On Monday, a leading member of Mr. Netanyahu’s Likud party said the prime minister told members in a closed-door session that Israel wouldn’t bow to pressure and reverse course on its planned 1,600 new homes in East Jerusalem.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Iran, Israel, Middle East, The Palestinian/Israeli Struggle

WSJ Front Page: Israel Rift Threatens U.S. Plans In Mideast

Israel signaled it won’t halt its building plans in the disputed territory of east Jerusalem, deepening a rift with the U.S. that threatens efforts to contain Iran and other American security goals in the Middle East.

Officials on both sides fear relations between the two allies are at their worst point in decades, after Israel scuttled hope for a new round of peace talks by announcing new settlement plans last week during a visit by Vice President Joseph Biden. That led to an extraordinary public rebuke of Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Mr. Netanyahu apologized for the timing, but he has declined to retract the plans for the settlements and others that have become among the biggest obstacles to peace talks. On Monday, a leading member of Mr. Netanyahu’s Likud party said the prime minister told members in a closed-door session that Israel wouldn’t bow to pressure and reverse course on its planned 1,600 new homes in East Jerusalem.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Iran, Israel, Middle East, The Palestinian/Israeli Struggle

USA Today: Roman Catholic Church, and religion in general, losing Latinos in USA

Latino population growth over the past two decades has boosted numbers in the Catholic Church, but a new, in-depth analysis shows Latinos’ allegiance to Catholicism is waning as some move toward other Christian denominations or claim no religion at all.

A report out today by researchers at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., finds Latino religious identification increasingly diverse and more “Americanized.”

The analysis, based on data from the 2008 American Religious Identification Survey, compares responses to phone surveys in 1990 and 2008 conducted in English and Spanish. The 2008 sample included 3,169 people who identified themselves as Latinos.

“What you see is growing diversity ”” away from Catholicism and splitting between those who join evangelical or Protestant groups or no religion,” says report co-author Barry Kosmin, a sociologist and director of the Institute for the Study of Secularism in Society and Culture at Trinity College.

Please take the time to read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Evangelicals, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic