Monthly Archives: June 2010

Living Church: Church of Mexico Adopts Anglican Covenant

The Anglican Church of Mexico, which was part of the Episcopal Church until 1995, has become the first province to adopt the Anglican Covenant.

The province adopted the Covenant during its sixth General Synod, which met June 11-12 in Mexico City.

“We are delighted to hear that Mexico has agreed to adopt the Covenant,” said the Rev. Canon Kenneth Kearon, Secretary General of the Anglican Communion. “Provinces were asked to take their time to seriously consider this document, and we are glad to hear from recent synods that they are doing just that.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, - Anglican: Latest News, Anglican Covenant, Mexico

RNS: Caterpillar divestment doesn't play well with Peoria Presbyterians

Proposals to have the Presbyterian Church (USA) denounce or divest from Caterpillar Inc. because the company sells bulldozers to Israel are not playing well in Peoria.

The central Illinois city is home to the heavy machinery manufacturer, and a healthy number of local Presbyterians count on the company for paychecks, pensions or health care.

Nearly a third of the 700-member Northminster Presbyterian Church, for example, derive their income from Caterpillar or one of its subsidiaries, said Senior Pastor Doug Hucke; five of the church’s nine elders work for the company.

“Caterpillar’s huge in this part of the world,” Hucke said.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Other Churches, Presbyterian, Religion & Culture

FBI arrests 11 accused of working as Russian spies

The White House said Tuesday that it does not expect the arrests of 11 accused members of a Russian espionage ring to affect relations between Washington and Moscow, shrugging off Russian denunciations of the busts as a throwback to the Cold War.

The FBI moved to arrest 10 suspects in the United States on Sunday in part because one of them was scheduled to leave the country, a Justice Department spokesman said. He did not specify which of the defendants was planning to leave.

The 11th suspect was arrested at Larnaca airport on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus as he was about to fly to Budapest, Hungary, Cypriot authorities said Tuesday. The man, identified in a U.S. complaint as Christopher Metsos, 54, was later released on bail but was told to remain on Cyprus for a month pending U.S. extradition proceedings. U.S. officials said Metsos acted as a money man for the ring and purported to be a Canadian citizen.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Europe, Foreign Relations, Russia

Spain and Paraguay go on the World Cup Quarterfinals

Congratulations to both of them.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Sports

Tom Krattenmaker: How to sell Christianity? Ask an atheist.

Jim Henderson is a recovering evangelist. Back in his soul-chasing, church-starting days, he began hearing a grating dissonance between his faith in Jesus and the way he went about winning new converts. Henderson realized he was doing unto others what he would never want done unto him. He was manipulating conversations to set up a pitch. Viewing people as potential notches on his evangelism belt rather than fellow sojourners and prospective friends. Listening only to the extent it could reveal an argumentative opening. He realized he hated the whole enterprise.

“I told the people in my church, ‘I don’t like evangelizing, and I know you hate it, so I’ve decided that I’m formally resigning from witnessing. You’re all free to do so the same,’ ” Henderson recalls. “I said, ‘I love Jesus, you love Jesus, and we all want to connect people with Jesus. But we’re gonna have to figure out new ways to do it.’ ”

In the 15 years since, Henderson has blazed a new path as an innovator, author, church-evaluator, self-professed subversive, and leader in the creation of new ways to be publicly and persuasively Christian in the 21st century. Maybe the most subversive ”” and sensible ”” surprise of all is the population to which this well-caffeinated Seattle man has turned for partners, friends and teachers: atheists.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Evangelism and Church Growth, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

NPR: An Evangelical Crusade To Go Green With God

As the oil continues to spill in the Gulf of Mexico, what to do about off-shore drilling and the regulation of the oil industry is cause for debate in Congress and among coastal residents. Now add to this another dimension: religion.

The Southern Baptist Convention has used notably strong language to call on the government ”” and its own congregation ”” to work to prevent such a crisis again.

In a resolution, the Convention called on the government “to act determinatively and with undeterred resolve to end this crisis … to ensure full corporate accountability for damages, clean-up and restoration … and to ensure that government and private industry are not again caught without planning for such possibilities.”

Dr. Russell Moore helped pass that resolution….

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, --The 2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill, Baptists, Energy, Natural Resources, Ethics / Moral Theology, Evangelicals, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Theology

FIFA President Apologizes for Refereeing Errors

England’s and Mexico’s misfortunes prompted a previously recalcitrant Sepp Blatter, the president of FIFA, to apologize on Tuesday for refereeing errors and to announce that he would reopen the discussion about the use of goal-line technology in soccer.

“I deplore when you see the evident referees’ mistakes,” Blatter told reporters. “It has not been a five-star game for referees. I’m distressed by the evident referees’ mistakes.”

The teams from England and Mexico paid the price for FIFA’s resistance to upgrade its officiating at this World Cup when they were eliminated in the Round of 16 after obvious mistakes by the referees.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Globalization, Sports

A letter from Bishop Ian T. Douglas to the Diocese of Connecticut

Read it carefully and read it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

Priest leaving Episcopal Church in New Haven to follow evangelical calling

For the Rev. Geoffrey Little and his wife, Blanca, it’s time to leave one spiritual home and build a new one.

Today will be the Littles’ last day at St. James Episcopal Church on East Grand Avenue, but they’ll continue to serve the Latino community in Fair Haven and Fair Haven Heights.

This week, they’ll open a new evangelical parish, worshiping in a banquet hall at 229 Grand Ave.

Blanca Little, who has run St. James Christian Academy, will open a new school in the fall, running it out of their home on Lenox Street.

“We’re going to open a new church in Fair Haven,” Geoff Little said. “It’s going to be called All Nations Christian Church and it’s going to be associated with the new Anglican Church of North America.”

That affiliation is important to the Littles, because the change is much more weighty than just changing addresses. For Geoff Little, it means resigning as a priest in the Episcopal Church.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, Theology

NPR: More Couples Have Friends Perform Wedding

The Wedding Report says two years ago, clergy performed 70 percent of all weddings. Last year, it was down to 62 percent.

The Rev. James Wind, president of the Alban Institute, a research firm focusing on religion, says he’s afraid couples may be losing out on what organized religion can offer a bride and groom.

“When we do a wedding ceremony, there’s a set of values that has been carried along for centuries in these religious communities that are resources for making this very important relationship, a bedrock relationship in our society, for making this work,” Wind says.

There is also concern over whether having friends perform weddings is legal. Many ministries offer instant ordinations. With the Internet it takes fewer than five minutes ”” and in some cases, no money ”” to become a minister. Fill out a few boxes with information, click submit and you too can be declared ordained.

Read or listen to it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

Netherlands powers into World Cup quarters

The Netherlands reached the quarterfinals of the World Cup when standouts Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder scored in each half of a 2-1 victory over Slovakia on Monday.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Europe, Globalization, Slovakia, Sports, The Netherlands

Tevez inspires Argentina win

Two goals by Carlos Tevez – one hugely-controversial and the other a wonderful strike – sent Argentina through to the World Cup quarter-finals with a 3-1 victory over Mexico.

The offside rule states there should be two players between the striker and the goal – there was not even one when Lionel Messi’s ball found Tevez’s head, and then the net to put Diego Maradona’s side in front.

Mexico went into meltdown and a defensive howler by Ricardo Osorio allowed Gonzalo Higuain to make it 2-0. It was Tevez who sewed the match up in brilliant fashion – and legitimately this time – early in the second half with Mexico left only to savour a stunning reply by Manchester United’s new signing Javier Hernandez.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Argentina, Globalization, Mexico, South America, Sports

On Vacation so Throttling the Blogging Way Back

I know you understand. Posts will be catch as catch can.

Posted in Uncategorized

Martin Rogers: World Cup blunder continues England misery

The call that drove a stake through the heart of one nation and gave another sweet revenge after 44 years was this World Cup’s most dramatic moment.

And also its most disappointing.

It wasn’t just Frank Lampard and England that deserved better than the outrageous blown call that denied them a valid goal and sent Germany to a 4-1 victory and a place in the quarterfinals.

Soccer deserves better.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, England / UK, Europe, Germany, Sports

AP: Germany beats England 4-1 to reach World Cup quarters

Germany reached the World Cup quarterfinals Sunday by beating England 4-1 in a match that will be remembered for the goal not awarded to Frank Lampard.

Read it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

England Down 2-1 at Halftime on a Ridiculous Disallowed Goal

I am still in shock that Frank Lampard’s obvious goal was not allowed. Very good to hear Jurgen Klinsman on ESPN say “it’s a disgrace.”

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, England / UK, Europe, Germany, Globalization, Sports

Great Morning at Saint James, James Island, SC

Heard a sermon from a layman on the conversion of Paul, and saw a new couple about to be married welcomed into the church. They even had a moment in the middle where people were offered the opportunity to say what they were thankful with the rest of the family of God if they so desired–KSH.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * By Kendall, * South Carolina, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Parishes

For U.S. Soccer Team, Holes Come Too Early, Too Often

In fact, the Americans were at a deficit from the start of the tournament. They gave up the two quickest goals of this World Cup ”” in the fourth minute against England in their first match and in the fifth minute Saturday against Ghana in their last. Over 4 games and almost 400 minutes of soccer, the United States led for only three minutes, the final ticks of the clock against Algeria, in its only win.

The Americans had to come from behind in three of their four games, often playing better when their fortunes appeared most dire.

Early deficits against England and Slovenia forced Coach Bob Bradley’s team to play with more urgency, pressing forward in the attack rather than waiting for opportunities to counterattack. Throughout the tournament, Bradley encouraged his players to draw strength from what he called the “difficult moments” they encountered in the past. But like adrenaline junkies, they seemed unable to perform without them.

“The warning signs were there,” Landon Donovan said. “Getting scored on early, and it came back to bite us.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Globalization, Sports

USA goes Down in Overtime 2-1

Arggh. It was a good game.

Posted in Uncategorized

USA Ties it 1-1

Where was this team in the first half?

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Sports

The U.S. Concedes Yet Another Early Goal


Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Ghana, Globalization, Sports

U.S. Team Cheered From the Stands and the States

The United States team bus, emblazoned with the slogan “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Victory,” was mobbed when it rolled through Pretoria on Wednesday.

The rowdy crowds that lined the streets did not pelt the bus with balloons filled with goat urine or bombard the team with slurs and deafening music, as they sometimes do when the Americans play a World Cup qualifier in Central America. Instead, the red-white-and-blue-clad supporters showered the team with chants of “U.S.A.” and serenaded it with toots from their vuvuzelas.

“It is not often you see them lining up on the road before the game, all dressed up and chanting and banging on the bus,” Coach Bob Bradley said after the Americans beat Algeria, 1-0, on Wednesday. “That was a really special moment for the team.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Globalization, Sports

Tabarez admits good fortune played a role in Uruguay Win

Oscar Tabarez admitted luck was on Uruguay’s side as they beat South Korea 2-1 to progress to the quarter-finals.

South Korea hit the post with a Park Cho-Young free-kick early on, but Uruguay were soon ahead through Luis Suarez after some poor defending.

Lee Chung-Yong then scored a deserved equaliser as South Korea dominated the second half, but that sparked a reaction that led to a stunning 80th-minute winner from Suarez.

“It was a difficult game to play and I think our win means more because of this,” Tabarez said. “We were surprised by their play. We wanted to finish the game in the second half. Their goal was key to our win because we improved after that. We showed class in the final minutes and Suarez scored two spectacular goals for us.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Asia, Globalization, South Korea, Sports

The Bishop of Albany Writes his Diocese About Their Recent Convention

Received via email–KSH

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Much has happened these last two weeks in and around the Diocese. The 142nd Diocesan Convention (June 11-13th) went very well. Approximately 900 clergy, lay deputies, visitors and youth attended the Convention. We began Friday evening with Evensong, led by Dean Vang, followed by the Bishop’s Address and the Opening Business Session. A copy of the Bishop’s Address will be posted on the Diocesan Website. Very appreciative of all that so many people have done throughout the Diocese, I spent a great deal of time (as those who attended can attest) recognizing people and offering special thanks for their efforts and many contributions. While I firmly believe it is important to recognize and thank people for a job well done, it is hard to identify everyone in a timely manner in the context of the Bishop’s Address. As recommended by many of you in your evaluations, at next year’s Diocesan Convention the much deserved recognition and thank you’s will be offered in various ways other than during the Bishop’s Address.

Each of the five resolutions presented were approved overwhelmingly:

R1 – Trinity Church, Rensselaerville was assigned to the Metropolitan Deanery;

R2 – Endorsement of the Anglican Communion Covenant;

R3 – The diocesan recommended standard clergy stipend schedule was increased by 2.5% along with a $5 recommended increase to the standard supply clergy compensation amount;

R4 – Approval of the 2011 Diocesan Budget of $1,657,546;

R5 – Approval of the Reduced Standard Assessment Formula for Parish Assessments for 2011

The resolution most heavily debated was Resolution #2 which stated: “RESOLVED, that the Episcopal Diocese of Albany endorses the Anglican Communion Covenant (final text, approved for distribution December 18, 2009) and recommends its adoption by all the Provinces of the Anglican Communion.”

The resolution passed by a 4 to 1 margin: 314 (yes) to 76 (no). Each canonically resident clergy present and lay deputy was allowed to vote. As I have stated on earlier occasions, by endorsing the Anglican Communion Covenant, The Diocese of Albany is sending a strong message and signal to the rest of The Episcopal Church and the wider Anglican Communion that we greatly value our Anglican heritage and relationships throughout the world, and that we intend by the grace of God to honor that which is asked of us in the Anglican Communion Covenant, worshipping and serving our Lord Jesus Christ, sharing the Gospel in cooperation and close relationship with our brothers and sisters in Christ throughout the Anglican Communion. The Anglican Communion Covenant does not ask us (the Diocese of Albany) to do anything that we are not already doing, nor does it ask the Diocese of Albany to be anything other than who we are.

In other Convention related news, the following individuals were elected to their respective offices:

Deputies to General Convention (4 Priests / 4 Laity): The Very Rev. David Collum, The Rev. Scott Garno, The Rev. Canon Robert Haskell, The Very Rev. John Scott III, Richard Carroll, Deborah Fish, Sue Ellen Ruetsch, Elizabeth Strickland

Ecclesiastical Trial Court: The Rev. Laurie Garramone-Rohr, Sue Armstrong and Lawrence Norville. The Rev. Mark Michael is the clergy Alternate.

The Standing Committee: The Rev. Lynne Curtis, The Rev. Derik Roy, Jennifer Dean and Ray Rockwell.

I am very appreciative to everyone who allowed their names to be nominated and congratulate those who were elected. May the Lord bless you and the Diocese in your ministry.

In addition to the above elections, the Convention approved my nomination of The Very Rev. David Collum and the Very Rev. Christopher Brown as Archdeacons, assisting me in better ministering to the people of the Diocese of Albany and the wider community, particularly in the metropolitan area and the North Country.

The rest of the Convention Weekend was filled with a variety of wonderful workshops (approx. 67), Spirit-filled worship, fellowship, food, entertainment, Vacation Bible School and the Youth Rally. I am very appreciative to every one who attended and helped make this year’s Diocesan Convention such a success. I am also very appreciative to our guest speakers: Archbishop Drexel Gomez (Retired Archbishop and Primate of the West Indies), and the Rev. Michael Chapman (Bishop Suffragan-Elect of Peru). We were very blessed by their presence and the message the Lord gave them to share.

No sooner had the 142nd Diocesan Convention come to an end, then we began planning for next year’s 143rd Diocesan Convention. I want to thank those of you who filled out the evaluation forms from Convention. Your thoughts and recommendations are greatly appreciated and help us as we continue to try to make the Diocesan Convention the best that it can be.

On Saturday, June 19th, The Venerable David Collum was installed as the 20th Dean of the Cathedral of All Saints. The Service was well attended with members from the Cathedral and the wider diocese. Incorporating much of the installation service designed by Bishop Doane (1st Bishop of Albany), the service was very moving and quite beautiful, (despite a few occasions when I could not get my eyes and mouth to cooperate with the page in front of me). I am very excited for Dean Collum and the Cathedral of All Saints as they begin their new ministry together worshipping and serving God, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and ministering to the people in the metropolitan area as well as throughout the Diocese.

This past Monday, June 21st, I traveled to Philadelphia to ordain the Rev. Kyle Tomlin to the priesthood. Fr. Tomlin was sponsored by the Diocese of Albany for ordination and has been called as rector of St. Alban’s, Philadelphia. May the Lord bless him in his new ministry.

In between everything else going on, we have had a number of confirmation services and parish visitations the past two weeks to include: St. Stephen’s, Delmar; Christ Church, Duanesburg; St. Hubert’s, Lake Pleasant, each of which was very enjoyable and a blessing to be a part of.

Today, I am off to Troy to attend the final team meeting and planning session for the upcoming mission trip to Peru (July 19-31). Later this evening I will be heading up to the North Country in preparation for parish visitations and confirmations tomorrow at Grace Church, Canton and St. Philip’s, Norwood.

I pray that the Lord blesses each of you richly this week in your worship together and as you go forth boldly into the world in His name.

Faithfully Yours in Christ,

–(The Rt. Rev.) Bill Love is Bishop of Albany

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Covenant, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

Diocese of Albany Proposed Resolutions for 2010 Convention

You may find them here beginning on page 15.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Covenant, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

Churches using movies, TV as education tools

Barney Fife and Andy Taylor may not be Peter and Paul, but Chattanooga churches have found TV’s Mayberry disciples often touch on the same truisms as the New Testament leaders.

Local congregations increasingly are using television shows and the movie format to teach spiritual lessons.

“It’s amazing the parallels you can find to New Testament scripture,” said St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church member Bill Steverson, who led the recent study “The Gospel According to Barney,” based on the 1960s “Andy Griffith Show.” “I wondered if the scriptures I found were the ones they were reading when they wrote the (television show) script.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Adult Education, Movies & Television, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

CSM–Gulf oil spill: Could 'toxic storm' make beach towns uninhabitable?

Ron Greve expects the worst is yet to come in the oil spill drama that is haranguing beach towns all along the US Gulf Coast. So, like a growing number of residents, the Pensacola Beach solar-cell salesman took a hazardous materials class and received a “hazmat card” upon graduation.

Those cards, says Mr. Greve, could become critical in coming weeks and months. In the case of a hurricane hitting the 250-mile wide slick and pushing it over sand dunes and into beach towns, residents fear they’ll face not only mass evacuations, but potential permanent relocation.

Storm-wizened locals know that it can take days, even weeks, for roads to open and authorities to allow residents to return to inspect the damage and start to rebuild after a hurricane moves through.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, --The 2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill, Energy, Natural Resources

Walter Russell Mead: Pointless G-20 Summit Unfolds In Toronto

The first task for anybody these days who wants to follow world news in an intelligent way is to figure out what to ignore. All over the world, commissions are meeting, legislatures debating, leaders are making speeches, demonstrators are marching, sabers are rattling and so on. Nobody can follow it all or make sense of it all. So, from the standpoint of the generalist or the engaged citizen the question is how to achieve ”˜intelligent ignorance’: how to figure out what you don’t need to follow so that you can focus like a laser on what really counts.

The approaching G-20 summit in Toronto is an excellent subject to ignore ”” a classic pseudo-event that will be breathlessly and minutely covered by the ’serious’ press at which much will be said and little done. Over the last two weeks I myself have saved great swathes of time by skimming lightly across rather than delving deeply into such subjects as whether the United States and Germany will engage in a catfight over fiscal stimulus and whether China’s decision to loosen its control over its currency will reduce the pressure on China at the G-20. It is as close to certain as anything can be that nothing will take place at the G-20 that changes German or American fiscal plans or in any way shape or form affect China’s currency policy in any substantive way. There is no point whatever in covering these subjects, and just because journalists are stupid and lazy enough to write these pieces and editors are misguided enough to run them is no reason why you, dear reader, should waste your precious time reading them. Indeed, to the extent that you allow yourself to be deceived into the belief that what is happening in Toronto is an event rather than a pageant you will actually be degrading your ability to follow world affairs.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Canada, Economy, Globalization, Politics in General

A.S. Haley on the Fort Worth Legal Ruling

The Court’s opinion and order represent an unqualified victory for the Diocese and Corporation headed by the Rt. Rev. Jack L. Iker, which were both established in 1983. Here is the essential quote from the Court of Appeals’ opinion:

It is undisputed that there is only one Corporation and only one Fort Worth Diocese, regardless of how those entities are named or characterized in the underlying suit – whether as entities, as individuals “holding themselves out” as those entities, or as individuals “associated with” one or the other Bishop. There is a single Fort Worth Diocese and Corporation, which both a majority and a minority faction claim to control. The attorneys whose authority is challenged are either authorized to represent those two entities or they are not. But the trial court has barred them from representing only the Corporation and the Fort Worth Diocese associated with the Iker Group. We are aware of no statute or common law rule allowing attorneys to prosecute a suit in the name of a corporation or other entity on behalf of only one faction or part of that corporation or entity against another part or faction.

Thus, the Court of Appeals has soundly rejected ECUSA’s Machiavellian strategy…. Although ECUSA’s own complaint (and motion for summary adjudication) will stand for the time being, Bishop Gulick and his five “trustees” will have all their pleadings stricken, and so will have to start from scratch. They will have to admit this time that the entities they claim to represent were newly organized in 2009, and that will undermine ECUSA’s position as argued in its motion as well. So my guess is that if this decision stands (and there is every reason to expect that it will, since it is so straightforward), ECUSA will have to refile its motion for summary adjudication also. Given the appellate court’s ruling as quoted above, ECUSA cannot go forward on its preferred theory that “dioceses never leave, only people do.” That is why this decision is such a huge victory for Bishop Iker and the true Diocese of Fort Worth.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Fort Worth

Fort Worth: Court of Appeals Grants Petititon for Writ of Mandamus

Read the opinion here (20 page pdf).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Fort Worth