Daily Archives: February 13, 2011

(Philadelphia Inquirer) Social media a blessing for some religious Leaders

A quick survey of priests, ministers, rabbis, and one imam made clear that social media were made for religion, in which connection and community are key.

“I love Facebook,” says Pastor Andrena Ingram of St. Michael’s Lutheran Church in Mount Airy. “You just reach everybody and anybody.” Like many religious congregations, St. Michael’s has a robust website. “When people come to visit us from out of town, very often it’s because they saw the website.”

On Facebook, Ingram posts news and announcements, and coordinates a youth group. She also runs a separate Facebook page “to minister to those both infected and affected with HIV,” connecting her with people as far away as Africa.

“It’s like a cyber-pastorship,” she says.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Islam, Judaism, Other Faiths, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Science & Technology

2 from the South Carolina Lowcountry open a free medical clinic in Uganda

Matt Alexander and his friend Ed O’Bryan, a Charleston doctor, were chatting at Chick-fil-A following an afternoon of surfing at Folly Beach in the summer of 2008 when — for reasons that still aren’t entirely clear to them — the conversation turned from waves to global medical missions.

Alexander, now 29, and O’Bryan, 32, discussed their shared enthusiasm for caring for patients in parts of the world with desperate shortages of health professionals. They griped that many missions treat people on a limited-time-only basis.

The duo was still sandy-footed and salty-haired when they hatched the idea for Palmetto Medical Initiative, a Charleston nonprofit group that aims to bring high-quality health care to impoverished corners of the world.

Read it all from the local paper.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * South Carolina, Africa, Health & Medicine, Uganda

(NY Times) Katherine Ellison on Parents, Anger, Adolescents and Violence–The Parent Trapped

The mad housewife is a reliable comic icon, her trials trivialized as boredom and cabin fever. It’s hard for most people to accept that mothers ”” even maybe their own mothers! ”” can be unloving, and sometimes unsafe. Which helps explain why killings like those ascribed to Ms. Schenecker, among some 200 American mothers who kill their children every year, always seem so surprising.

It’s easy to write these cases off as freak results of severe mental illness. But most of these women’s stories also include a lot of ordinary stress and social isolation, the fallout from divorce and the dispersal of extended families. Increasingly cut off from real-time conversations, mad housewives find solace in e-communities, where “life” is so much more soothing and predictable than dealing with teenagers. While news reports say Ms. Schenecker was seeking help from real-life counselors in the weeks before the killings, her Facebook page, with its pretty family photographs and homilies, is a portrait of polished denial.

Amid the debate about whether social networks are depriving us of healthier, non-virtual encounters, a University of Texas study last fall claimed that Facebook was not supplanting such interactions. Perhaps that’s true, but one thing I’m sure of, from my own lucky odyssey, is that all the poking and tagging in the world can’t compete with a pair of real-time eyes when it comes to noticing that someone needs more help than she’s getting.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Marriage & Family, Psychology, Teens / Youth, Violence, Women

James Eunice is Posthumously Made a Georgia Bulldog

[James] Eunice, a 17-year-old Valdosta native who drowned while duck hunting last month at Ocean Pond in Lake Park, has been posthumously named to the University of Georgia’s football roster by head coach Mark Richt.

During Eunice’s funeral last Saturday, Jay Rome and Malcolm Mitchell, who played football with Eunice at Valdosta High and have signed letters of intent to play for Georgia, came to the podium with a box. A letter that Richt had written to the Eunice family was read to the mourners in attendance.

At the end of the letter, Richt wrote, “Oh yeah, James made the team.”

Then Rome and Mitchell took an official Georgia jersey out of the box. On the jersey were Eunice’s last name and the No. 23 he had worn at Valdosta.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Death / Burial / Funerals, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Sports, Teens / Youth, Theology

A Charge Delivered to the Clergy of the Episcopal Diocese of Maine by the Bishop in 1850

From this first principle of absolute submission to the supreme authority of the revealed word of God, must proceed another principle, by which our ministrations, like our Church, should be characterized. It is the maintenance and presentation of the obvious doctrine of the Scriptures. My brethren, we assume without hesitation that there is such an obvious doctrine. We assume that it is the general doctrine which, in its simplest form, is expressed in the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, and in its more expanded outline spreads itself through our liturgy, articles and offices. We assume it, because, if the Bible be not meant to be less intelligible than the common compositions of upright men, there must be a meaning which shall be obvious; because amongst twenty readers at this day, nineteen are substantially agreed in the general interpretation; and because this interpretation has been essentially the same through all the Christian ages, wherever there has been freedom to read and to interpret.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops, Theology

A Prayer for the Sixth Sunday After Epiphany

O God, fountain of love, pour thy love into our souls, that we may love those whom thou lovest with the love thou givest us, and think and speak of them tenderly, meekly, lovingly; and so loving our brethren and sisters for thy sake, may grow in thy love, and dwelling in love may dwell in thee; for Jesus Christ’s sake.

–Edward Bouverie Pusey (1800-1882)

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

Upon your walls, O Jerusalem, I have set watchmen; all the day and all the night they shall never be silent. You who put the LORD in remembrance, take no rest, and give him no rest until he establishes Jerusalem and makes it a praise in the earth.

–Isaiah 62:6-7

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

A College Baseball Coach Donates a Kidney To one of his Outfielders

Wonderful stuff-watch/listen to it all.

Update: There is a great picture there also.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Education, Pastoral Theology, Sports, Theology

The Indomitable Bill Russell Values One Accolade Above the Rest

Is this the greatest personal honor in his life?….

The tentativeness of the question elicited the familiar whooping roar of laughter occasionally emitted by this publicly serious man.

“When he was about 77, my father and I were talking,” Russell answered. “And he said: ”˜You know, you’re all grown up now, and I want to tell you something. You know, I am very proud of the way you turned out as my son, and I’m proud of you as a father.’

“My father is my hero, O.K., and I cannot perceive of anything topping that,” Russell continued, his voice becoming husky….

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Marriage & Family, Psychology, Sports

The Rev. George D. Young elected Bishop of East Tennessee

The Rev. George D. Young, III, was elected on Saturday, Feb. 12 as fourth bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of East Tennessee, pending the required consents from a majority of bishops with jurisdiction and standing committees of the Episcopal Church.

Young, 55, rector of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, Fernandina Beach, Florida, was elected on the eighth ballot out of a field of five nominees. He received 107 votes of 142 cast in the lay order and 59 of 84 cast in the clergy order. An election on that ballot required 95 in the lay order and 56 in the clergy order.

Read it all.

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

(Catholic Online) Anglican Ordinariate Grows: Former Bishop Edwin Barnes Ordained Deacon

The Ordinariate Portal, the self described “one-stop site for news of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham” reported the good news on Friday of the ordination to the Order of Deacon of the highly respected former Anglican Bishop Edwin Barnes.

In former Bishop Barnes own words, “Today was very good. Bishop Crispian of Portmouth made us very welcome, and although there was only a handful of us in his private chapel for my ordination to the diaconate, we had some good music. For Our Lady of Lourdes, we’d chosen a bit of the Anglican Patrimony. We sang as an introit: Bishop Ken’s “Her Virgin Eyes saw God Incarnate born”, to Lawes’ tune ‘Farley Castle’. I was not the solitary deacon on parade; Stephen (good name for a Deacon) Morgan, who is finance secretary to the Diocese, propped me up and ensured I did not fall over my feet…”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Other Churches, Roman Catholic

The Dirty Little Secrets of Web Searching

With more than 1,100 stores and $17.8 billion in total revenue in 2010, Penney is certainly a major player in American retailing. But Google’s stated goal is to sift through every corner of the Internet and find the most important, relevant Web sites.

Does the collective wisdom of the Web really say that Penney has the most essential site when it comes to dresses? And bedding? And area rugs? And dozens of other words and phrases?

The New York Times asked an expert in online search, Doug Pierce of Blue Fountain Media in New York, to study this question, as well as Penney’s astoundingly strong search-term performance in recent months. What he found suggests that the digital age’s most mundane act, the Google search, often represents layer upon layer of intrigue. And the intrigue starts in the sprawling, subterranean world of “black hat” optimization, the dark art of raising the profile of a Web site with methods that Google considers tantamount to cheating.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Blogging & the Internet, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Science & Technology, Theology