Daily Archives: January 1, 2013

Clemson edges LSU 25-24 on last-second Field Goal

Chandler Catanzaro kicked a 37-yard field goal as time expired to give No. 14 Clemson a wild 25-24 win against No. 9 Louisiana State in the Chick-fil-A Bowl on Monday night.

Trailing 24-22, Clemson (11-2) took possession on its 20 with 1:39 remaining. Tajh Boyd completed a pass for 26 yards to DeAndre Hopkins on a fourth-and-16 play during the decisive 10-play drive.

Catanzaro’s kick set off a wild celebration on the field and in the stands. Some players collapsed on the field in apparent disbelief while most of Clemson’s orange jerseys met in a midfield circle.

Read it all. I was unable to stay up for the end; congratulations to the Tigers–KSH.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Education, Men, Sports, Young Adults

C.H. Spurgeon from 1884–The New Year's Guest

“I was a stranger, and you took Me in.” Matthew 25:35.

“But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” John 1:12.

I lately received a New Year’s card which suggested to me the topic on which I am about to speak to you. The designer of the card has, with holy insight, seen the relation of the two texts to each other and rendered both of them eminently suggestive by placing them together. There is freshness in the thought that, by receiving Jesus as a stranger, our believing hospitality works in us a Divine capacity and we thereby receive power to become the sons of God.
The connection suggested between the two Inspired words is really existent and by no means strained or fanciful, as you will see by reading the context of the passage in John”””He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not.” So He was a stranger in the world which He Himself had made! “He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.” So He was a stranger among the people whom He had set apart for His own by many deeds of mercy! “But as many as received Him”””that is to say, gave entertainment to this blessed Stranger”””to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.”

I thought that this might prove to be a suitable and salutary passage to discourse upon at the beginning of a New Year, for this is a season of hospitality and some among our friends will think it well to commence a New Year by saying to the Lord Jesus, “Come in, You blessed of the Lord; why do You stand outside?”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Theology, Theology: Scripture

A previous Bishop of Bolton on Keeping Perpective at Christmas

For many, Christmas is a couple of weeks of massive over-consumption. Two facts say it all: four million Brussels sprouts are purchased in the week before Christmas, and more than 8,000 tons of wrapping paper are used at Christmas, which the Government estimates is enough to wrap the whole island of Guernsey!

–(The Rt. Rev.) David Gillett, Bishop of Bolton, a number of years ago (astute blog readers may know that he stepped down in 2008 to care for his wife).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Christmas, Church of England (CoE), Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, CoE Bishops, Consumer/consumer spending, Economy, England / UK

Christianity Today’s Top Ten Stories of 2012

Here are the first two:

(1) Christian colleges and for-profit businesses sue over the Obama administration’s narrow religious exemption to its insurance
requirements for birth control, including emergency contraceptives

(2) The Supreme Court sides with a Lutheran Church”“Missouri Synod school against a former teacher, saying the government can’t get involved in ministerial
employment.

Read them all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Evangelicals, History, Media, Other Churches, Religion & Culture

A List of countries by population

Try to do the top ten in order before you look.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Globalization

Saint Augustine–God is "the eternity that is our refuge" as we begin another year

‘Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever the earth and the world were made: and from age even unto age Thou art’ (v. 2). Thou therefore who art for ever, and before we were, and before the world was, hast become our refuge ever since we turned to Thee. … But he very rightly does not say, Thou wast from ages, and unto ages Thou shalt be: but puts the verb in the present, intimating that the substance of God is altogether immutable. It is not, He was, and Shall be, but only Is. Whence the expression, I Am that I Am; and, I Am ‘hath sent me unto you;’ (Exod. iii. 14.) and, ‘Thou shalt change them, and they shall be changed: but Thou art the same, and Thy years shall not fail.’ (Ps. cii. 26, 27.) Behold then the eternity that is our refuge, that we may fly thither from the mutability of time, there to remain for evermore.

–Saint Augustine, from his Exposition on the Book of Psalms, Psalm XC (my emphasis).

Posted in Uncategorized

Poetry to Begin the Year–The Thread of Life

[1] The irresponsive silence of the land,
The irresponsive sounding of the sea,
Speak both one message of one sense to me: ””
Aloof, aloof, we stand aloof, so stand
Thou too aloof bound with the flawless band
Of inner solitude; we bind not thee;
But who from thy self””chain shall set thee free?
What heart shall touch thy heart? what hand thy hand?””
And I am sometimes proud and sometimes meek,
And sometimes I remember days of old
When fellowship seemed not so far to seek
And all the world and I seemed much less cold,
And at the rainbow’s foot lay surely gold,
And hope felt strong and life itself not weak.
[2] Thus am I mine own prison. Everything
Around me free and sunny and at ease:
Or if in shadow, in a shade of trees
Which the sun kisses, where the gay birds sing
And where all winds make various murmuring;
Where bees are found, with honey for the bees;
Where sounds are music, and where silences
Are music of an unlike fashioning.
Then gaze I at the merrymaking crew,
And smile a moment and a moment sigh
Thinking: Why can I not rejoice with you ?
But soon I put the foolish fancy by:
I am not what I have nor what I do;
But what I was I am, I am even I.

[3]Therefore myself is that one only thing
I hold to use or waste, to keep or give;
My sole possession every day I live,
And still mine own despite Time’s winnowing.
Ever mine own, while moons and seasons bring
From crudeness ripeness mellow and sanative;
Ever mine own, till Death shall ply his sieve;
And still mine own, when saints break grave and sing.
And this myself as king unto my King
I give, to Him Who gave Himself for me;
Who gives Himself to me, and bids me sing
A sweet new song of His redeemed set free;
He bids me sing: O death, where is thy sting?
And sing: O grave, where is thy victory?

–Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Poetry & Literature

Archbishop Rowan Williams' New Year Message for 2013


….everyone who visited the Olympic site or watched the broadcasts will have been made aware of the army of volunteers who cheerfully gave up their free time and worked away, without complaint, all hours of the day and night to make these great events happen. They were the key people who translated the Olympic vision into reality for the rest of us.

It ought to make us think a bit harder about all the other folk who quietly, often invisibly, turn vision into reality and just make things happen ”“ especially volunteers. Here at the Robes project, over twenty local churches are combining to offer food and shelter to homeless people in London. Religion here isn’t a social problem or an old-fashioned embarrassment, it’s a wellspring of energy and a source of life-giving vision for how people should be regarded and treated. So let’s recognise this steady current of generosity that underlies so much of our life together in this country and indeed worldwide.

It’s all based on one vision ”“ to make our society, our whole world, work for everyone, not just the comfortable and well off. And it’s a vision that sometimes seems to need Olympic levels of patient hard work and dedication.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, England / UK, Religion & Culture

Blessed and Happy New Year of 2013 to All Blog Readers!

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Blogging & the Internet

London Fireworks 2013

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

A Prayer for the New Year

O God of new beginnings and wonderful surprises, thank you for the gift of a new year. May it be a time of grace for me, a time to grow in faith and love, a time to renew my commitment to following Your Son, Jesus. May it be a year of blessing for me, a time to cherish my family and friends, a time to renew my efforts at work, a time to embrace my faith more fully. Walk with me, please, in every day and every hour of this new year, that the light of Christ might shine through me, in spite of my weaknesses and failings. Above all, may I remember this year that I am a pilgrim on the sacred path to You. Amen.

–Courtesy of Saint Agnes Cathedral, Rockville Centre, New York

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Spirituality/Prayer

Another Prayer for the Feast of the Holy Name

O God, who hast made the most glorious name of our Lord Jesus Christ, thine only-begotten Son, to be exceeding sweet and supremely lovable to thy faithful servants: Mercifully grant that all who devoutly venerate this name of Jesus on earth may in this life receive thy holy comfort, and in the life to come attain thine unending joy; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Sarum Missal

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

A Prayer for the Feast of the Holy Name

O almighty God, who hast given unto thy Son Jesus Christ the name which is above every name, and hast taught us that there is none other whereby we may be saved: Mercifully grant that as thy faithful people have comfort and peace in his name, so they may ever labour to publish it unto all nations; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Scottish Prayer Book

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

A Psalm of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

–Psalm 103:1-5

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Music for Chistmas–Rascal Flatts – "Mary Did You Know"

Listen to it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Christmas, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Music