Daily Archives: March 13, 2008

Rising use of Internet challenges its capacity

Caution: Heavy Internet traffic ahead. Delays possible.

For months there has been a rising chorus of alarm about the surging growth in the amount of data flying across the Internet. The threat, according to some industry groups, analysts and researchers, stems mainly from the increasing visual richness of online communications and entertainment — video clips and movies, social networks and multiplayer games.

Moving images, far more than words or sounds, are hefty rivers of digital bits passing through the Internet’s pipes and gateways, requiring, in industry parlance, more bandwidth. Last year, by one estimate, the video site YouTube, owned by Google, consumed as much bandwidth as the entire Internet did in 2000.

In a widely cited report published last November, a research firm projected that user demand for the Internet could outpace network capacity by 2011. The title of a debate scheduled next month at a technology conference in Boston sums up the angst: “The End of the Internet?”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Blogging & the Internet

Integrity Responds to the News of the Lambeth decision on Gene Robinson

Integrity expresses its profound disappointment and anger that the Archbishop of Canterbury has failed to find a way for the Rt. Rev. Gene Robison to meaningfully participate in the Lambeth Conference. The Rev. Susan Russell, President of Integrity, said, “Bishop Robinson’s marginalization is symbolic of the discrimination experienced by the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender faithful daily throughout the Anglican Communion. It runs completely contrary to the promise made at the last Lambeth Conference ‘to listen to the experience of homosexual persons’ (see Lambeth 1998 Resolution 1.10.) making a travesty of the so-called ‘Listening Process.'”

Russell added, “Integrity completely supports Bishop Robinson’s call for other U.S. bishops to attend the Lambeth Conference despite his exclusion — and we challenge them to speak not only for him, but for the LGBT faithful throughout the Anglican Communion who will have no voice in Canterbury. Integrity will be consulting with a number of progressive bishops on how to best offer that witness.”

Russell concluded by saying, “Integrity continues to prepare for our Lambeth Conference witness with our global Anglican allies. We will be there in numbers and we look forward to the opportunity to claim God’s justice and proclaim Christ’s love.”

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Lambeth 2008, TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts

LA Times: Episcopal Church expels San Joaquin diocese bishop

During a telephone news conference Wednesday from the bishops’ retreat center in Texas, Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori appeared to caution Schofield from trying to hold on to church property in the diocese, estimated to be worth millions of dollars.

“Since he is no longer the bishop of San Joaquin, it would be inappropriate for him to retain title,” she said.

Since the Dec. 8 secession vote, competing diocesan structures — one Anglican, one Episcopal — have emerged in the sprawling territory of San Joaquin, which stretches from Sacramento to Bakersfield. There are now two diocesan headquarters, two diocesan websites and a number of painfully divided congregations, including St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Visalia and St. Mark’s in Tracy.

Schofield has continued to work from his Fresno headquarters, celebrating the Eucharist, meeting with clergy and going about the business of the diocese, said his spokesman, the Rev. Van McCalister.

Wednesday’s action was “kind of meaningless from our perspective,” McCalister said. “Our feeling was let’s just be done with it and move forward.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

A Communiqué from GAFCON leadership meeting

From here:

We met in England as the leadership team of the Global Anglican Future Conference and Jerusalem Pilgrimage from March 10-12, 2008 and were encouraged by the support and enthusiasm of bishops, clergy and lay leaders around the Anglican Communion who have welcomed GAFCON and expressed their desire to attend.

We affirmed that the goals of GAFCON are to:

1. Provide an opportunity for fellowship to continue to experience and proclaim the transforming love of Christ.
2. Develop a renewed understanding of our identity as Anglican Christians within our current context.
3. Prepare for an Anglican future in which the Gospel is uncompromised and Christ-centered mission a top priority.

We received reports from our various task forces involved in logistics support and program development and are grateful for the remarkable progress already made. We are confident that our time together in the Holy Land will be one of great blessing for the wider Christian community, a positive witness of Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and anticipation of our future as Anglican Christians.

Archbishop Peter J. Akinola
On behalf of the Leadership Team.
12th March, 2008

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of Nigeria, Global South Churches & Primates

Church of England Newspaper front page: Lambeth invitations reviewed

The question of Lambeth Conference invitations will be reviewed by the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Windsor Continuation Group (WCG), sources familiar with its deliberations tell The Church of England Newspaper. Chartered last month by the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams, the WCG will take a second look at the decision not to extend invitations to the African-consecrated American bishops of Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Nigeria, and may also discuss the question of Bishop Gene Robinson of New Hampshire’s non-invitation.

Were Dr Williams to accept advice to broaden the Lambeth Conference invitation list, “that would change everything,” one global south leader told CEN, and prevent Lambeth from being a “bust.”

Dr Williams’ decision not to invite Bishop Martyn Minns of Cana and Bishop Chuck Murphy of the AMiA and their suffragans contributed to the decision by the Churches of Nigeria and Rwanda to decline the invitation to attend Lambeth. The Archbishop of Kenya has announced that he will not attend the July 16-Aug 3 conference after his two suffragans, Bishops Bill Atwood and Bill Murdoch, were overlooked by Lambeth. The Kenyan House of Bishops meets later this spring and will review its position at that time, sources in the Kenyan church tell CEN.

At its New Orleans meeting last year, the US House of Bishops asked Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori to treat with Dr Williams, and find a way to bring Bishop Robinson to Lambeth. Acting on behalf of the presiding bishop, the bishops of Northern Indiana, Vermont and Wyoming spoke with Dr Williams’ aide, Mr Chris Smith and ACC Secretary General Canon Kenneth Kearon on five occasions. The three reported they had sought to find a way for Bishop Robinson to “have the opportunity to pray with other bishops at Lambeth,” to have an opportunity to “build relationships,” and that he be given a “voice at the table” during the discussions“on human sexuality.”

Their approach was unsuccessful and they reported that a “full invitation is not possible,” for the New Hampshire bishop. Nor would he be able to participate in the bishops’ retreat or study groups. While he could not be an “observer” at Lambeth, he was offered the opportunity by the organizing committee to be part of the Lambeth Marketplace””-a venue where vendors historically displayed their wares.

Bishop Robinson told the House of Bishops that he had declined the invitation to set up a stall amongst the haberdashers, prefacing his remarks by saying he was not “whining”, but the marketplace was a “non-offer” already available to him. The controversy had left him “dismayed and sick hearted,” he said. However, he would go independently of the invitation process as he had a duty to the…[young people he recently met]. “I will go to Lambeth remembering the 100 or so twenty-something’s I met in Hong Kong this fall, who meet every Sunday afternoon to worship and sing God’s praise in a secret catacomb of safety ”” because they can’t be gay and Christian in their own churches. I will be taking them to Lambeth with me,” he said.

The secretary to the Windsor Continuation Group, Canon Gregory Cameron declined to confirm or deny its agenda, telling the CEN that it had “decided not to make their work more public” at this stage of the proceedings. The WCG met last week in London, spending March 4 with the ACC-Primates Joint Standing Committee and March 5 with Dr Williams. Sources present at the joint standing committee meeting with the WCG note the issue of invitations was not raised.Canon James Rosenthal of the ACC noted that while he could not speak to the invitations issue, Dr Williams was doing everything in his power to see that as many bishops as possible could come to Lambeth.

Sources familiar with the deliberations of the WCG report the group will meet two more times and offer its recommendations to Dr Williams. The public brief of the group, which is chaired by the former Presiding Bishop of Jerusalem and the Middle East, Bishop Clive Handford, is to “contribute to the shared discernment of the bishops in strengthening the life and identity of the Anglican Communion.”

Finding a way of bringing those boycotting the Conference back into the life of the Communion is a priority, sources tell CEN, and that will include looking once again at the invitation question. While the WCG may recommend several courses of action to address the dysfunction within the Communion, the question of
”˜who comes to Lambeth?’ is for Dr Williams alone to decide, one global south primate noted.

–This article appears on the front page of the March 14, 2008 edition of the Church of England Newspaper

Posted in Uncategorized

Austin Arts Festival Adds Technology Component

One of the country’s most popular arts festivals, “South by Southwest” in Austin, Texas, hosted a mind-bending series of technology conversations this week, ranging from global political activists using mobile technology in novel ways to fighting the paucity of American women in the tech sector.

For highlights from “South by Southwest ”” Interactive,” Michele Norris talks with Omar Gallaga, who covers technology culture for the Austin American-Statesman.

Listen to it all and note carefully here the highlight of the conference is seen to have occurred.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Blogging & the Internet, Science & Technology

NY Times: Episcopal Church Votes to Oust Bishop Who Seceded

Experts on the church said the deposing of Bishop Schofield had set the stage for the next phase of the conflict, which would most likely be lawsuits over diocesan and parish property.

The Rev. Ephraim Radner, a leading Episcopal conservative and professor of historical theology at Wycliffe College in Toronto, echoed other experts when he said the removal of Bishop Schofield would send a message to others considering a split with the church. Two other bishops have been warned not to proceed with votes to secede. Episcopal bishops denied, however, that the vote to depose the bishop was “punitive.”

“I don’t think we are sending messages but dealing with matters at hand,” Bishop Suffragan Catherine S. Roskam of New York said in a conference call. “We have dealt with it with sober conversation, dealt with it prayerfully and even regretfully.”

Read it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

Seeking to preserve a church's tradition in Minnesota

Historic Pipestone Inc. has added a new building to its list of preservation projects. The group purchased the St. Paul Episcopal Church located at 221 4th street SE. It is the oldest existing church building in Pipestone and one of only two quartzite stone churches remaining in Pipestone.
Dave Christensen and Chuck Draper, members of Historic Pipestone Inc. said the organization wanted to purchase the church building in order to preserve its history and structure.

“It has really great architecture,” Draper said.” It is a good example of an early church.”

The church will be cared for and renovated over the next few years. As with anything that is more than 100 years old, the building is going to require some TLC mixed with plenty of elbow grease. Christensen said replacing the windows is at the top of the committee’s to do list. Followed by fixing the bathrooms and painting the sanctuary.

“The windows are leaded stained glass and some of the leading is coming loose,” Christensen said.

Read it all.

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

'Magic is over' for U.S., says French foreign minister

Bernard Kouchner, the foreign minister of France and a longtime humanitarian, diplomatic and political activist on the international scene, says that whoever succeeds President George W. Bush may restore something of the United States’ battered image and standing overseas, but that “the magic is over.”

In a wide-ranging conversation with Roger Cohen of the International Herald Tribune at the launch of a Forum for New Diplomacy in Paris, Kouchner on Tuesday also held out the hope of talking with Hamas, the Palestinian faction that rules the Gaza Strip but has been ostracized by the West and by its Palestinian rival, Fatah, because it opposes peace talks with Israel and denies that Israel has a right to exist.

Asked whether the United States could repair the damage it has suffered to its reputation during the Bush presidency and especially since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, Kouchner replied, “It will never be as it was before.”

“I think the magic is over,” he continued, in what amounted to a sober assessment from one of the strongest supporters in France of the United States.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Europe, Foreign Relations

Significant Problems with the Comments (Again)

I am never entirely sure why this happens, but the problems with the comments have really mounted over the last 7-10 days. I am very concerned about this as a matter of stewardship of the site.

In particular:

(1)There has been a tendency to import other agendas into a thread which are the concern of the poster, but not of the thread.

(2) The number of posts which express anger, bitterness, frustration and grumpiness without a balance of Christian charity and in a number of cases Christian hope has gone way up.

(3) We still have people who engage too much in ad hominem attacks or unnecessarily personal comments.

(4) Some individual are dominating certain threads to a unnecessary extent.

Please read my previous statements about the comments found here. Also, do take the time to read over and pray over your comments before you submit them. Consider taking a break from commenting if some of these concerns apply to you.


Posted in * By Kendall

Archbishop Drexel Gomez Interviewed on the Religion Report Down Under

Noel Debien: The Archbishop here in Sydney has suggested that the authority of Lambeth has been undermined because North America has moved ahead, even though Lambeth said not to move ahead. Has Lambeth been impaired?

Drexel Gomez: To a certain extent, but all the North Americans have said they have taken a legalistic approach. The Lambeth Conference is a consultation of the various bishops. Each province is supposed to receive the resolutions of Lambeth to discuss them and to decide whether or not they’re willing to accept them. But despite the legality, I believe that the Lambeth Conference – the way it has developed over this century- has attained a certain moral standing in the communion. So when the bishops as leaders of the communion, speak on an issue, I think they have a moral authority, and in this particular resolution the Lambeth 1.10 of the 1998 Lambeth conference was passed by an overwhelming majority of the bishops present. And what they did was not to take any step, what they did was simply to reaffirm the church’s traditional teaching on sexuality. And in that reaffirmation the churches in North America have had some difficulty in joining in because they’re seeking a new direction. And they claim that they’re doing so as a Gospel imperative, that we are guided by the Holy Spirit to effect changes in the way the church has approached matters related to sexuality and Biblical authority. I don’t agree with them, neither does Archbishop Jensen, but that disagreement – I think- must not prevent us from at least trying to talk to them and trying to see if we cannot restore the traditional teaching of the church across the communion.

Noel Debien: Even though they’ve shown that they won’t back down on autonomy, the US Episcopalians (who you’ve actually criticised previously as ‘aggressive, revisionist theologians’) but they seem to have put the brakes on, yet the global south see4ms also to want a showdown still.

Drexel Gomez: The leaders of the global south feel that North America in particular, some other parts of the communion have not taken them seriously, and are not listening to the protests that they are giving, because they say the issues as fundamental not only to the unity but the integrity of the Gospel.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Lambeth 2008, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), West Indies

Archbishop Venables Memo to Bishop Schofield

March 12, 2008
The Rt. Rev. John David Schofield
4159 East Dakota Avenue
Fresno , CA , 93726 , USA

Dear Bishop John David,

Greetings in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. God has called us to faithfully represent Christ in a difficult time in history. To bear faithful witness to Christ, however costly for us, is less of a price than that which must be paid by those who deny His saving grace.
We are deeply honored to have you as Bishop and your Diocese as full members of the Southern Cone. We will continue to proclaim the Gospel together as brother bishops. May God richly bless you and give you peace.

Yours in Christ,


The Most Rev. Gregory J. Venables
Primate of the Southern Cone

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Cono Sur [formerly Southern Cone], Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

Modesto Bee: Episcopal Church throws out Fresno bishop

The House of Bishops in the Episcopal Church USA voted today to depose the Rt. Rev. John-David Schofield, bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin.

It’s a little like firing someone who already has resigned.

Schofield, who in December led his diocese to leave the national church over issues such as biblical interpretation and homosexuality, now is under the oversight of the Anglican Church’s Southern Cone in South America.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Cono Sur [formerly Southern Cone], Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

House of Bishops statement on the Lambeth Conference

As the Lambeth Conference approaches, we believe we have an enormous opportunity, in the midst of struggle, to be proud of our heritage, and to use this particular time in a holy way by affirming our rich diversity. The health of such diversity is that we are dealing openly with issues that affect the entire global community. Thus, even as we acknowledge the pain felt by many, we also affirm its holiness as we seek to be faithful to our Lord Jesus Christ.

Even though we did not all support the consecration of the Bishop of New Hampshire, we acknowledge that he is a canonically elected and consecrated bishop in this church. We regret that he alone among bishops ministering within the territorial boundaries of their dioceses and provinces, did not receive an invitation to attend the Lambeth Conference.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Lambeth 2008, TEC Bishops

Alexander elected Anglican bishop of Edmonton

Jane Alexander’s father was so anti-church that he forbade her from attending religious classes at school in England, where she was born and raised.

As a girl, she obeyed her father. But it was while singing hymns and oratorios in choirs and school assemblies that she says she heard “the first whisperings of God.”

“I remember rather nervously reaching out to Him at a time of great upheaval as a teenager and being overwhelmed with a sense of welcome.”

Read it all.

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

Pope, at U.N., to Address Issues that Cross Boundaries

Next month, Pope Benedict XVI will become the third leader of the Catholic Church to address the United Nations General Assembly in New York, following Pope Paul VI in 1965, and Pope John Paul II in 1979 and 1995.

Vatican officials have not indicated what Benedict might say in his April 18 speech, but if his past statements are any guide, he will address some of the U.N.’s most prominent agenda items, such as arms control and the fight against global poverty and disease, along with issues of particular interest to the Holy See, such as religious freedom and abortion.

Whatever the precise content, Benedict’s U.N. speech is bound to reflect a vision of peace and development drawn from Catholic social teaching — priorities that cut across the usual geographic, political or ideological boundaries of the world community.

Like his predecessors, Benedict enthusiastically supports the U.N.’s founding mission, as defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and its central operating principle of multilateral diplomacy.

Read it all.

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

Bishop Schofield's response (Diocese of San Joaquin news release)

[received via e-mail]

News Release
Diocese of San Joaquin: March 12, 2008

Contact: Fr. Van McCalister, (559) 244-4828, Diocese of San Joaquin

The Rt. Rev. John-David Schofield, bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin, a member diocese of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone of South America, was disappointed by today’s decision of the Episcopal House of Bishops but he was not surprised by it.

“It is a shame that the disciplinary process of The Episcopal Church has been misused in this way,” Bishop Schofield said in responding to the news that the Episcopal House of Bishops voted to depose him. “The disciplinary procedures used by the House of Bishops, in my case, were intended for those who have abandoned the Faith and are leading others away from orthodox Christianity, as held in trust by bishops in the Anglican Communion ”“ and which The Episcopal Church had previously upheld also.”

“The question that begs to be answered by the House of Bishops,” said Bishop Schofield, “is, why bishops who continue to teach and publish books that deny the most basic Christian beliefs are not disciplined while those of us who uphold the Christian Faith are?” He added, “At least I am in good company. It is a privilege to know that I am standing along side of one of the outstanding theologians of our time, J. I. Packer, who is under similar discipline by the Canadian Church and who, also, has placed himself under the authority of the Southern Cone.”

“I have not abandoned the Faith,” Schofield observed. “I resigned from the American House of Bishops and have been received into the House of Bishops of the Southern Cone. Both Houses are members of the Anglican Communion. They are not ”“ or should not be ”“ two separate Churches. It is the leadership of The Episcopal Church that is treating itself as a separate and unique Church. They may do so, but they ought not expect everyone to follow teaching that serves only to undermine the authority of the Bible and ultimately leads to lifestyles that are destructive.”

“The fact remains,” Schofield observed, “that a canon law specifically designed to protect the people of God from wrong teaching and schismatic movements has been used in a clumsy way. I do not think it is a coincidence that the canon that was used, was the one that involves the least due process. The decision to act against me was not made by the House of Bishops as a whole. It was made behind closed doors by a small review committee and, only then, presented to the larger body for an ‘up or down’ vote.” The bishop added, “Tragically, what drives this action of The Episcopal Church is neither the Christian Faith nor the Communion they say I have abandoned. In the end, it appears as though the real motivation behind all of this is the use of raw power and coveting property. If this is so, then any attempts by The Episcopal Church to seize our property directly ignore Saint Paul’s warning not to take a fellow Christian to a civil court. [1 Corinthians 6:1-8]”

Bishop Schofield resigned from the House of Bishops as of March 7, 2008. “I am still an active Anglican bishop, and I continue to be the bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin,” Bishop Schofield affirmed.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Primary Source, -- Statements & Letters: Bishops, Anglican Provinces, Cono Sur [formerly Southern Cone], Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

Anglican Communion Network response to the deposition of Bishops Schofield and Cox

“This is a bit like saying ”˜you can’t quit, you’re fired!’” said the Rev. Canon Daryl Fenton, Chief Operating Officer for the Network. “It will have no practical effect on the ministry of these two godly leaders, but instead makes crystal clear the scorched earth policy that the current leadership of The Episcopal Church intends to prosecute against those who can not in good conscience follow them out of the Christian mainstream.”

“There is no question that both Bishop Cox and Bishop Schofield remain bishops in the Anglican Communion and will continue in ministry. We at the Network are thankful for their willingness to witness for the truth of the Gospel and fully intend to support them in their ongoing ministry,” he added.

The full text of the short statement is here.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Commentary, Anglican Communion Network, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

House of Bishops consents to deposition of John-David Schofield, William Cox

[Episcopal News Service] The House of Bishops voted March 12 to consent to the deposition from the ordained ministry of the Rt. Rev. John-David Schofield, bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin, and the Rt. Rev. William Jackson Cox, bishop suffragan of the Diocese of Maryland, resigned.

Members of the House of Bishops are preparing a statement regarding these actions and for release after a March 12 afternoon session.

The process used to work through these resolutions took into account the importance of prayer and careful reflection before each vote was taken. Specifically, in both cases the House was first led in prayer by a chaplain, followed by small-group discussion, and then plenary discussion. After this, voting commenced. Each vote was cast clearly in the majority, with some nay votes, and some abstentions.

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori asked the bishops assembled “to continue to reach out” in pastoral care to both Schofield and Cox.

“Abandoning the Communion of this Church does not mean we abandon a person as a member of the Body of Christ,” Jefferts Schori said.

Full texts of the resolutions follow. Each resolution was considered and voted upon separately. The resolution pertaining to Schofield was acted upon first.

The full text is here.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin