Daily Archives: July 2, 2015

(Independent) Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives

Nathan Collier said he was inspired by the recent Supreme Court decision that made marriage equal. He said he was particularly struck by the words of dissenting Chief Justice John Roberts who claimed giving gay couples the right to marry, might inspire polygamy.

And so this week, Mr Collier and his two wives, Victoria and Christine, entered a courthouse in Billings, Montana, and sought an application to legalise the trio’s polygamous union,

“Right now we’re waiting for an answer,” Mr Collier told The Independent. “I have two wives because I love two women and I want my second wife to have the same legal rights and protection as my first.”

He added: “Most people are not us. I am not trying to define what marriage means for anybody else – I am trying to define what marriage means for us.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Supreme Court, Theology

More from Owen Strachan on Mark Oppenheimer's Deeply disturbing Time piece

What does this show us? Three things, I think.

It shows us that tolerance is over. I’m not breaking new ground here”“but this must be said. Tolerance is dead. Oppenheimer’s piece ran all of two days after the SCOTUS decision on same-sex marriage. He wants to crush those who dare to stand against the fullest possible acceptance of what Harvard professor Harvey Mansfield has called “samesexuality.” Sexuality liberated from any constraints is now a full-blown worldview. This is paganism, 21st-century version. The body is all; sex is all.

The hippies now wear steel-toed boots. The earlier “free love” movement was all about doing what you want”“live and let live. Today’s version of this pagan impulse is militaristic”“live and you better approve. There’s a menace, a fury, in this cultural momentum. There will be no tolerance. There will be no dissent. Churches and organizations that stand bravely against the rushing tide of the late stages of the sexual revolution will be crushed.

It shows us that churches and organizations doing much good are imperiled.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, America/U.S.A., Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Taxes, The U.S. Government, Theology

AU 191 – St James Newport Beach and TEC Same-sex Marriage Resolutions


With thanks to George Conger and Allan Haley at Anglican TV

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Commentary

Kevin DeYoung–40 Questions for Christians Now Claiming Supreme Court Victory

3. Do you think Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were motivated by personal animus and bigotry when they, for almost all of their lives, defined marriage as a covenant relationship between one man and one woman?

14. Do you think children do best with a mother and a father?

15. If not, what research would you point to in support of that conclusion?

16. If yes, does the church or the state have any role to play in promoting or privileging the arrangement that puts children with a mom and a dad?

17. Does the end and purpose of marriage point to something more than an adult’s emotional and sexual fulfillment?

18. How would you define marriage?

19. Do you think close family members should be allowed to get married?

20. Should marriage be limited to only two people?

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Tim Montgomerie–Tunisia revulsion should not motivate us to eradicate all vestiges of religion

Britain and America may now be post-Christian societies but they don’t need to become anti-Christian societies. Sadly, I see signs that we might be drifting in that direction. There is the mounting campaign to close all faith schools; the questioning of Tim Farron MP’s legitimacy to lead the Liberal Democrats because of his evangelical background; and the fear of the chief justice of the US Supreme Court that opponents of Christian morality “are determined to stamp out every vestige of dissent”; no charitable status for faith-based groups and no room for believers in the public square.

Half of me can identify with the anti-religious instinct because, while I’m a Christian seeking space within a secular society, I am also a sceptic about Islam. I’m fearful that, without Christianity’s clear narrative ”” ending as the New Testament does with the example of Jesus ”” Islam is a religion that’s too easy for the likes of Seifeddine Rezgui to misinterpret. Most Muslims, of course, hate the heinous crime he committed in their name ”” but, regardless of what we might think about Islam, thinking the worst is not really a practical option. Nearly three million Britons are Muslims; 1.6 billion of our global neighbours see Allah as the one true God. The challenge must be to understand them and help them to reform their religion ”” not to drive them and it underground.

I want less vacuous talk of fairness, tolerance and generosity from our politicians. Let’s start getting specific about what we mean by “British values”. Freedom of religion should be a cornerstone of western belief and it must stand as a contrast to the many Islamic states where apostasy is punishable by death.

Read it all from the London Times (subscription required) [emphasis mine].

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Law & Legal Issues, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Terrorism, Theology, Tunisia, Violence

(BBC) Why some believe there should be guns in Church after the Charleston Shooting

The murders of 9 churchgoers in Charleston, South Carolina, rekindled the debate about gun control in America. But some religious leaders are advocating using armed security to defend their congregations.

One church where this is already happening is the Greater Grace Temple in Detroit which has its own 25-strong security force called “The Ministers of Defence”. Charles H. Ellis III is its senior pastor.

Listen to it all (a little over 3 minutes).

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * South Carolina, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Spirituality/Prayer, Theology, Urban/City Life and Issues, Violence

Global South Statement on TEC marriage vote–"we are deeply grieved again"

Updated with new signatories, July 7
Statement in response to the House of Bishops of The Episcopal Church resolution regarding same sex marriage

We are deeply grieved again by the Episcopal Church USA (TEC) Resolution to change the definition of marriage in their church canons in their current ongoing General Convention.

By this action, TEC has chosen by its own will and actions in clear knowledge to depart from the Anglican Communion’s standard teaching on human sexuality according to Lambeth Resolution 1:10. This TEC Resolution is another example of such unilateral decisions that are taken without giving the least consideration to the possible consequences on other provinces and the Anglican Communion as a whole, the ecumenical partnerships, the mission of the church worldwide, and the interfaith relations. This Resolution clearly contradicts the Holy Scriptures and God’s plan for creation as He created humankind as man and woman to complement each other physically and emotionally.

Indeed the church must provide pastoral care for all, whether heterosexuals or homosexuals. However the church should not alter the teachings of the Holy Scriptures, that was interpreted by the majority churches globally, to provide such pastoral care. The aim of pastoral care is to restore people to the bosom of God where they encounter His love and design to live a life according to His plan. We are against any criminalization of homosexuals, they are like all of us, need God’s mercy, grace and salvation. The church is intended by its Lord to be the holy leaven to shape society by its spiritual and moral values
in line with God’s design. But sadly, by this action of TEC, the church gives way to the society to alter and shape its values. In other words the church is losing its distinctiveness as salt and light in this world.

“do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:2)

This statement is approved by:
The Most Rev. Dr. Mouneer Anis, Archbishop, Diocese of Egypt with North Africa and the Horn of Africa and Chairman of the Global South.
The Most Rev. Ian Ernest, Primate of the Indian Ocean and General Secretary of the Global South.
The Most Rev. Bolly Lapok, Primate of South East Asia and treasurer of the Global South.
The Most Rev. Stephen Than Myint Oo, Primate of Myanmar.
The Most Rev. Hector “Tito” Zavala, Primate of the Anglican Church of South America.
The Rt. Rev. John Chew, member of the GS Global South steering committee, former GS chairman.
The Most Rev. Onesphore Rwaje, Primate of Rwanda.
The Most Rev. Eliud Wabukala, Primate of Kenya
The Most Rev. Bernard Ntahoturi, Primate of Burundi

* The above mentioned GS Primates are the ones who sent their approval and amendments before posting this statement. We will add the names of those who will send their approval after.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Executive Council, Global South Churches & Primates, Marriage & Family, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Graham Tomlin announced as the new Bishop of Kensington

The Bishop of London, the Rt Revd & Rt Hon Richard Chartres KCVO, said:

“In his many publications and in his teaching in St Mellitus College, Graham has demonstrated a generous orthodoxy which combines depth with clarity. He has continually combined teaching with pastoral care for those preparing for parochial and other ministries. His whole ministry in a sense has been in support of the ”˜local church’ for which he has a passion. As Area Bishop he will be able to develop this theme in his ministry as he serves the remarkably diverse Christian communities in West London.”

Graham trained for ordination at Wycliffe Hall, was a curate in Exeter, later returning to Wycliffe as a tutor in Historical Theology and eventually becoming Vice Principal. In 2005, he helped found St Paul’s Theological Centre, which is now part of St Mellitus College. Graham is the author of many articles and several books, most recently, ”˜The Widening Circle ”“ Priesthood as God’s way of Blessing the World’, published in 2014. He is married to Janet and has two grown-up children.

Read it all.

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

Anne Hollinghurst to be next Bishop of Aston

Anne is currently vicar of St Peter’s Church in St Albans, a ”˜small, historic city’, where she describes her role as ”˜growing a vision for an outward-focused mission and ministry’. Previously, she has worked as a youth worker in West Sussex and then Nottingham, where both Anne and her husband Steve explored a call to ordained ministry.

In 1999, after a joint curacy in another challenging area of inner city Nottingham, Anne and Steve moved to Derby where Anne was Chaplain at the University of Derby and Derby Cathedral for six years. Steve pursued a different path and is currently a part-time tutor with the Church Army and a half-time consultant, trainer and researcher in mission and contemporary culture.

Having moved to Manchester in 2005, Anne served as a Residentiary Canon of Manchester Cathedral and as Chaplain to the Bishop of Manchester where she says she ”˜loved the city centre cathedral ministry, but also had a privileged opportunity to learn a lot about the challenges and opportunities of a complex urban diocese’.

Read it all.

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

(Telegraph) Heartbreak for England in Women's World Cup after own goal with last kick

England’s Women’s World Cup dream was ended in heartbreaking fashion as a stoppage time own goal by the Notts County central defender Laura Bassett handed Japan victory.

Attempting to cut out a pass into the penalty area, Bassett instead sent the ball past the goalkeeper Karen Bardsley and in off the crossbar.

Bassett has been one of her team’s most reliable performers at the this World Cup but will find it hard to forget the moment that meant England would not be making history by reaching the final for the first time.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Asia, England / UK, Globalization, Japan, Sports, Women

(NYT) Mixed Messages and No Progress in Greek Crisis

In the past few days, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras of Greece has blown up negotiations with European creditors on staving off default, then retreated and accepted more or less the same terms, only to have European leaders tell him the offer had expired.

Greeks are supposed to vote on a referendum this weekend, but no one there or elsewhere seems sure what they will be asked, or what the consequences will be for voting yes or no.

And European leaders here and in Berlin and Paris have been saying distinct ”” sometimes directly contradictory ”” things about whether there is a bailout deal for Greece still on the table, and whether they want Greece to hold its referendum before they can renew discussions about it.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Anthropology, Credit Markets, Currency Markets, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Europe, Foreign Relations, Greece, Politics in General, The Banking System/Sector, Theology

A Prayer to Begin the Day from Saint Anselm

Grant, O Lord, that we may cleave to thee without parting, worship thee without wearying, serve thee without failing; faithfully seek thee, happily find thee, and for ever possess thee, the one only God, blessed, world without end.

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

A Song of Ascents. Of David. O LORD, my heart is not lifted up, my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a child quieted at its mother’s breast; like a child that is quieted is my soul. O Israel, hope in the LORD from this time forth and for evermore.

–Psalm 131

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Happy Canada Day to All Canadian Readers!

Posted in * International News & Commentary, Canada

(RNS)-Supreme Crt decsn a win for same-sex couples, but for polygamy activists, the fight continues

So is polygamy passé? The next slide on our slippery slope to damnation? The next rung on our steep climb towards full civil rights and equality in America?

Whatever your take, there’s no denying that last week’s SCOTUS opinions broke our collective silence on poly rights. If Friday’s ruling was about dignity and equality, as Justice Kennedy made clear, we must continue this debate.

Read it all from Brian Pellot.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, --Polyamory, America/U.S.A., Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Politics in General, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Supreme Court, Theology