Daily Archives: October 28, 2010

Two Reappraising Church groups campaign against Anglican Covenant

In November, the Church of England’s General Synod will be asked to approve the covenant.

“Many synod members do not realize it, but it could be the biggest change to the church since the Reformation,” said an Oct. 28 press release from Inclusive Church and Modern Church, ahead of a campaign launch Oct. 29 when full-page ads will appear in both the Church of England Newspaper and the Church Times.

The campaign “will continue during the weeks leading up to the General Synod debate,” scheduled for Nov. 24, “and if the [covenant] is not rejected, but referred to the dioceses, it will continue throughout 2011,” the release said.

Read it all.

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

Notable and Quotable

Jay Leno on undecided voters: “Do we vote for the people who got us into this mess, or the people who can’t get us out of this mess?”

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * General Interest, House of Representatives, Humor / Trivia, Notable & Quotable, Politics in General, Senate, State Government

Treasury Sees Escalating Risk to Home Prices

The uncertainty over the legal status of foreclosed homes in the nation could further depress home prices and delay the recovery of the housing market, the Obama administration said on Wednesday.

The warning came at the first Congressional hearing since the magnitude of the problem gained wide attention. Distressed properties make up one quarter of all home sales.

Revelations about paperwork shortcuts and so-called robo-signed affidavits, as well as the likelihood of protracted legal battles by homeowners and inquiries by state and federal officials, will hinder foreclosure proceedings and discourage prospective buyers, a Treasury Department official said.

“Together, these two factors may exert downward pressure on overall housing prices both in the short and long run,” said the official, Phyllis R. Caldwell, chief of the homeownership preservation office at the Treasury.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Housing/Real Estate Market, The U.S. Government, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner

School-based sex ed program outrages mother of teen girl who received birth control

A Charleston County mother and her 14-year-old daughter were spending some quality time together one Sunday evening when the conversation turned to sex.

She asked her daughter whether she was sexually active, and the Burke High School freshman surprised her with the news that she had sex once. After a few minutes of silence, the mother told her daughter that she wanted to call the family doctor and arrange for her to go on birth control.

This time, her daughter’s response came as an even bigger surprise: a woman at school had taken her to a clinic for a shot that would provide birth control for three months.

The mother, whose name is being withheld to protect her daughter’s identity, said she hadn’t been informed.

Read it all from the front page of today’s local paper.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Education, Law & Legal Issues, Life Ethics, Marriage & Family, Teens / Youth

Chinese Supercomputer Wrests Title From U.S.

A Chinese scientific research center has built the fastest supercomputer ever made, replacing the United States as maker of the swiftest machine, and giving China bragging rights as a technology superpower.

The computer, known as Tianhe-1A, has 1.4 times the horsepower of the current top computer, which is at a national laboratory in Tennessee, as measured by the standard test used to gauge how well the systems handle mathematical calculations, said Jack Dongarra, a University of Tennessee computer scientist who maintains the official supercomputer rankings.

Although the official list of the top 500 fastest machines, which comes out every six months, is not due to be completed by Mr. Dongarra until next week, he said the Chinese computer “blows away the existing No. 1 machine.” He added, “We don’t close the books until Nov. 1, but I would say it is unlikely we will see a system that is faster.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Asia, China, Science & Technology

US ramps up civilian task force in Sudan in preparation for referendum

A team from the newly formed US Civilian Response Corps is building a significant presence across the southern half of… [Sudan].

There is a possibility civil war could break out between the Christian south and Muslim north after the referendum in January which will decide by a simple majority whether southern Sudan becomes the world’s newest sovereign state.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph Ambassador Robert Loftis, the Civilian Response Corps chief, who is directly answerable to the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, said he was sending teams around the region to “observe, report and monitor”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Politics in General, Sudan, Violence

NPR–For the Army, Preventing Soldier Suicides Starts On Day 1

The Army has found that 79 percent of suicides in its ranks occurred in the first three years of life as a soldier, whether or not the soldier had been deployed. And suicides tend to happen during times of serious transition.

Alarmed at the growing rate of soldiers taking their own lives, the Army has begun investigating the effectiveness off its mental health and suicide prevention programs. It also has instituted many programs to counsel and train soldiers.

In its latest monthly report on suicides, the Army said 18 soldier deaths were under investigation ”” up from 13 the month before.

Transition for a soldier can mean a number of things: deploying to a combat zone, coming home, leaving a unit or leaving the Army. But one of the biggest transitions in any soldier’s life is that first moment when the bus rolls into the processing center….

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Health & Medicine, Iraq War, Military / Armed Forces, Psychology, Suicide, War in Afghanistan

Canadian Lutheran and Anglican bishops brainstorm solutions to common problems

(Anglican Journal) Canadian Lutheran churches appear to be faced with many of the same problems known to Canadian Anglicans.

These include shrinking congregations and an increased interest in weekly eucharist.

According to Susan Johnson, national bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC), this is leading Lutherans to look at such measures as the use of ordained pastors as “circuit riders” bringing the eucharist to a number of parishes. Speaking here at the Oct. 22-25 joint meeting of the Anglican House of Bishops and Lutheran Conference of Bishops, she added there has also been pressure to revive a practice of permitting lay people to preside at the sacrament, as some Lutheran churches did at one time.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canada, Ecumenical Relations, Lutheran, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

The full Web link for the New Church of England Statistics

Lots of interesting stuff to look through–check it out.

Posted in Uncategorized

Church of England publishes latest statistics on the web

(ACNS) The Church of England has today published its latest information about parish income and expenditure and trends in ministry numbers in Church Statistics 2008/9. The attendance statistics included were published in February 2010.

This year’s statistics include additional information on current areas of interest reflecting the contemporary life of the Church. Information on children and young people’s involvement with the church outside worship has been collected for the second time, so that trends can be identified in future years as more data is collected. Data on numbers of parishes theologically opposed to the ordination of women provide factual information for future debates.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

Pittsburgh Area Anglican churches participate in effort to read 100 Bible passages

Over the next year, people in the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh ”” including locals from Monroeville ”” will read 100 Bible

Last month, more than 4,000 people from 48 churches in the Pittsburgh region began to read 100 “essential” readings in the Bible ”” 50 from the Old Testament and 50 from the New Testament

The E100 challenge is a Bible reading
plan that provides an overview of the biblical narrative and advances participants’ Bible knowledge through regular reading.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Adult Education, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Parish Ministry, Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Prayer for the Feast Day of St. Simon and St. Jude

O God, we thank thee for the glorious company of the apostles, and especially on this day for Simon and Jude; and we pray thee that, as they were faithful and zealous in their mission, so we may with ardent devotion make known the love and mercy of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O Lord, who lovest not the strife of men, and yet wouldest have thy servants strive earnestly for the faith of the gospel; grant us so to seek thy truth that we may never forget to obey it, so to contend, for it that we may never cause our brethren to stumble, and so to hold the form of godliness that we lose not at last the life and substance of it; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

In the meantime, when so many thousands of the multitude had gathered together that they trod upon one another, he began to say to his disciples first, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.

–Luke 12:1-3

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

LA Times–Biggest public-works project in America Derails

The nation’s biggest public-works project, a new rail tunnel under the Hudson River, was canceled Wednesday when the governor of New Jersey announced that his state didn’t have the money to pay its share of the almost $9-billion cost.

Gov. Christopher Christie, a Republican, who came into office last year promising fiscal restraint, said New Jersey couldn’t afford the construction overruns. He previously rejected any gasoline tax increase to pay for the project.

“In the end, my decision does not change,” Christie said at a news conference. “I cannot place upon the citizens of New Jersey an open-ended letter of credit, and that’s what this project represents.”

Read it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

(Lebanon Daily Star) Ghassan Rubeiz–Religious leaders needed in peacemaking

Mutual distrust leads many Palestinians and Israelis to think of peace as a mirage. Since religion plays a significant role in justifying the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, politicians need the help of religious leaders in their search for a solution.

The problem is that often the patriarchal figures of the three faiths are too focused on “protecting” the community from erosion of piety or the threat of assimilation to pay enough attention to moral empowerment. Too many leaders defend ownership of land at the expense of justice, rationalize war and its spoils, and remind their people to track the enemy vigilantly using partial interpretations of sacred texts for this purpose.

Religious leaders from outside the region oftentimes also fuel the conflict, sometimes without even being aware that they are doing so. Based outside of the area and free from the considerations of local day-to-day life, these authorities too often espouse hardline positions. The American charismatic church, for example, supports Israel automatically, even at the risk of threatening long-term Jewish security. To become enablers of peace, religious authorities will have to shift from a preoccupation with protecting the tradition from change to becoming agents of inter-communal reconciliation.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Islam, Israel, Judaism, Middle East, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, The Palestinian/Israeli Struggle, War in Gaza December 2008--

.Washington Post–Feds arrest N.Va. man in D.C. Metro bomb plot

Federal law enforcement authorities have arrested a Northern Virginia man in connection with an alleged plot to carry out a series of terrorist bombings at stations in the Washington Metro system, according to a federal indictment.

Farooque Ahmed, 34, of Ashburn, conspired with people he believed to be al-Qaeda operatives to attack the stations at Arlington National Cemetery, Pentagon City, Crystal City and Court House, the indictment said.

An administration official said Ahmed, a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in Pakistan, first drew the attention of law enforcement officials by seeking to obtain unspecified materials. He later became the target of an undercover sting operation, officials said.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Defense, National Security, Military, Terrorism