Daily Archives: November 27, 2011

Eastern Canadian Anglican Parish leaves central site, moves church to suburbs

Cy Pitman, bishop for the Anglican diocese for Eastern Newfoundland and Labrador, says he supports the parish’s move.

“St. Michael’s has a history of reaching out in areas where people are. And that’s all about who we are as a church,” he says.

When asked if the move has to do with a declining membership, Rose said while numbers have gone down over the years, it’s more to do with an aging population and the changing demographics in the area than people not supporting the church.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Aging / the Elderly, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canada, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

Sheffield Bishop condemns system based on ”˜ethics of greed’

The Bishop of Sheffield has spoken out against an economic system “shaped by the ethics of greed and everyone for themselves”.

As the ”˜Occupy Sheffield’ protest continued on the forecourt of the Cathedral, the Rt Rev Dr Steven Croft said: “We may want to agree with the questions which are being raised whilst disagreeing with the methods of the protesters in raising them.”

Addressing the Sheffield Anglican Synod last Saturday, the Bishop said the Church’s voice needed to be heard as the economic crisis continues and deepens.

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

Local Paper Faith and Values Section–Roman Catholic missal newly revitalized

In the case of the Catholic Church’s new missal, the liturgical book parishioners follow during the celebration of the Mass, it took nearly 11 years of linguistic labor since Pope John Paul II issued his 2000 directive to produce a new English version of the Mass liturgy — fast by any church standards.

Today, the first Sunday of Advent, English-speaking Catholics in the U.S. will use a new missal for the first time in nearly 40 years, and likely for a long time to come.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, * South Carolina, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Other Churches, Roman Catholic

(RNS) Angry Churches Pull Money from Big Banks

A small but growing number of religious communities across the country are removing their money from Wall Street banks to protest what they see as unfair mortgage foreclosures and unwillingness to lend to small businesses.

The New Bottom Line (NBL) coalition of congregations, community organizations, labor unions and individuals is promoting a “Move Our Money” campaign with the goal of shifting $1 billion from big banks to community banks and credit unions.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, Theology

An Orlando Sentinel Profile of New Central Florida Episcopal Bishop-elect Greg Brewer

Returning to Orlando is something of a full-circle reunion for Brewer and those friends of his youth whose lives he influenced so long ago. Many of them have carried forward the community involvement he inspired, said Judy Betterson, a childhood friend of Brewer’s wife.

Betterson said she found Brewer to be smart, witty and humble ”” a sage in a young man’s body.

“He was probably the wisest man I had known at such a young age,” said Betterson, 61, of Winter Park.

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

Sheryl Sandberg–the deepening impact of social media in 2012

Mark Zuckerberg’s “law of sharing” is to social media what Moore’s law is to computing power. Coined a few years back, the Facebook founder’s law asserts that the amount of information shared digitally will double every year. This will never be more evident than in 2012. Around the globe, people will share more and more of their lives online, transforming relationships on every level””personal, commercial and institutional.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Globalization

An Important [2008] Article of which to be Reminded–(First Things) Is Mormonism Christian?

From Gerald McDermott’s conclusion:

In sum, then, Mormon beliefs diverge widely from historic Christian orthodoxy. The Book of Mormon, which is Mormonism’s principal source for its claim to new revelation and a new prophet, lacks credibility. And the Jesus proclaimed by Joseph Smith and his followers is different in significant ways from the Jesus of the New Testament: Smith’s Jesus is a God distinct from God the Father; he was once merely a man and not God; he is of the same species as human beings; and his being and acts are limited by coeternal matter and laws.

The intent of this essay is not to say that individual Mormons will be barred from sitting with Abraham and the saints at the marriage supper of the Lamb. We are saved by a merciful Trinity, not by our theology. But the distinguished scholar of Mormonism Jan Shipps was only partly right when she wrote that Mormonism is a departure from the existing Christian tradition as much as early Christianity was a departure from Judaism. For if Christianity is a shoot grafted onto the olive tree of Judaism, Mormonism as it stands cannot be successfully grafted onto either.

Read both essays carefully.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Christology, Inter-Faith Relations, Mormons, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, The Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Theology

CS Lewis for Advent (II)

Preaching at the University Church of St. Mary the Virgin in Oxford on October 22, 1939, Lewis observed that

to a Christian the true tragedy of Nero must be not that he fiddled while the city was on fire but that he fiddled on the brink of hell. You must forgive me for that crude monosyllable. I know that many wiser and better Christians than I in these days do not like to mention heaven and hell even in a pulpit. I know, too, that nearly all the references to this subject in the New Testament come from a single source. But then that source is our Lord Himself. People will tell you it is St. Paul, but that is untrue. These overwhelming doctrines are dominical. They are not really removable from the teaching of Christ or of His Church. If we do not believe them, our presence in this church is great tomfoolery. If we do, we must sometime overcome our spiritual prudery and mention them.

Later he describes all those present as “creatures who are every moment advancing either to heaven or hell,” challenging them all, even in the context of the war, “to retain” an interest “in learning under the shadow of these eternal issues.”

–CS Lewis “Learning In War-Time,” in Walter Hooper, ed., The Weight Of Glory And Other Addresses (New York: Macmillan, revised ed., 1980), pp. 20-21

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Advent, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Eschatology, Theology

CS Lewis for Advent (I)

All that is not eternal is eternally out of date.

–C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves (London: Geoffrey Bles, 1960), p.137

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Advent, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Almighty and everlasting God, who orderest all things in heaven and on earth: We give thee thanks and praise that thou didst make all ages a preparation for the coming of thy Son, our blessed Redeemer. Prepare us for the coming of him whom thou dost send, and grant that of his fullness we may all receive; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Advent, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Bible Readings

And they asked him, “Teacher, when will this be, and what will be the sign when this is about to take place?” And he said, “Take heed that you are not led astray; for many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am he!’ and, ‘The time is at hand!’ Do not go after them. And when you hear of wars and tumults, do not be terrified; for this must first take place, but the end will not be at once.” Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and pestilences; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. But before all this they will lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors for my name’s sake. This will be a time for you to bear testimony. Settle it therefore in your minds, not to meditate beforehand how to answer; for I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict. You will be delivered up even by parents and brothers and kinsmen and friends, and some of you they will put to death; you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your lives.

–Luke 21:7-19

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Telegraph) Prepare for riots in euro collapse, Foreign Office warns

British embassies in the eurozone have been told to draw up plans to help British expats through the collapse of the single currency, amid new fears for Italy and Spain.

As the Italian government struggled to borrow and Spain considered seeking an international bail-out, British ministers privately warned that the break-up of the euro, once almost unthinkable, is now increasingly plausible.

Diplomats are preparing to help Britons abroad through a banking collapse and even riots arising from the debt crisis.

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Posted in Uncategorized

(Economist Leader) Unless Germany and the ECB move quickly, the Euro's collapse is looming

Even as the euro zone hurtles towards a crash, most people are assuming that, in the end, European leaders will do whatever it takes to save the single currency. That is because the consequences of the euro’s destruction are so catastrophic that no sensible policymaker could stand by and let it happen.

A euro break-up would cause a global bust worse even than the one in 2008-09. The world’s most financially integrated region would be ripped apart by defaults, bank failures and the imposition of capital controls….The euro zone could shatter into different pieces, or a large block in the north and a fragmented south. Amid the recriminations and broken treaties after the failure of the European Union’s biggest economic project, wild currency swings between those in the core and those in the periphery would almost certainly bring the single market to a shuddering halt. The survival of the EU itself would be in doubt.

Yet the threat of a disaster does not always stop it from happening. The chances of the euro zone being smashed apart have risen alarmingly, thanks to financial panic, a rapidly weakening economic outlook and pigheaded brinkmanship. The odds of a safe landing are dwindling fast.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Credit Markets, Currency Markets, Economy, England / UK, Euro, Europe, European Central Bank, Foreign Relations, France, Germany, Globalization, Greece, History, Ireland, Italy, Politics in General, Portugal, Psychology, Spain, Stock Market, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

PBS' Religion and Ethics Newsweekly: Combating Hunger

BOB ABERNETHY: One important lobby is the Christian group Bread for the World, which fights hunger here and abroad. Reverend David Beckmann, a Lutheran pastor, is president of Bread for the World. David welcome.

DAVID BECKMANN (President, Bread for the World): Thank you.

ABERNETHY: Bring us up to date, how many hungry people are there in the United States?

BECKMANN: It’s now 1 in 7 Americans who lives in a household that runs out of food.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Charities/Non-Profit Organizations, Dieting/Food/Nutrition, Evangelicals, Other Churches, Poverty, Religion & Culture, Theology

Alec Hill–The Importance of Dependence

For most Americans, dependence is a very uncomfortable subject. Preferring to see ourselves as rugged individualists, we romanticize about characters such Ayn Rand’s main character, Howard Roark, in her novel Fountainhead. Reliant upon no one, he follows only his own inner sense of direction.

As disciples of Jesus, we pursue a very different path ”” not to autonomy but to obedience; not to ascension, but to surrender; not to seizing control but to yielding it. Indeed, the concepts of lordship and dependence are at the very core of Christian discipleship.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Theology