Monthly Archives: March 2011

(RNS) Report: Small Churches Feeling Financial Squeeze

Almost all U.S. churches witnessed a change in the financial giving they received in 2010 compared to 2009, with smaller churches feeling the squeeze but larger churches faring relatively better, according to a new report.
Only 12 percent of churches reported unchanged giving from 2009, according to the State of the Plate survey released Wednesday (March 30), while 43 percent of churches experienced a giving increase and 39 percent reported a decrease.

Smaller congregations were more likely to see a decrease in giving, said Matt Branaugh, an editor at Christianity Today International, which helped gather the data for the State of the Plate for the past two years.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Economics, Politics, Economy, Parish Ministry, Stewardship, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

Bill Gross–Without big cuts in entitlements, a dreary Future for America

The above four multi-trillion-dollar liability balls are staggering in their implications. Remember first of all that the nearly $65 trillion of entitlement liabilities shown above are not some estimate of future spending. They are the discounted net present value of current spending should it continue at the projected demographic rate (importantly ­”“ it is much higher than the annual CPI + 1% used as a discounter because demand for healthcare rises much faster than inflation.) And while some Honorable Congressional Le Pews would counter that Medicaid is appropriated annually and therefore requires no discounted reserve, those words would surely count as “sweet nothings,” believable only to those whom they romance every several years at the polls. The incredible reality is that the $9.1 trillion federal debt that constitutes the next-to-tiniest ball in our chart is nothing compared to unfunded Medicaid and Medicare. It is like comparing Pluto to Saturn and Jupiter. The former (the $9.1 trillion current Treasury debt) does not even merit planetary status in our solar system of discounted future liabilities. It’s really just a large asteroid.

Look at it another way and our dire situation becomes equally revealing. Suppose that the $65 trillion of entitlement liabilities were fully funded in a “lockbox,” much like Social Security is falsely imagined to be. Just suppose. And say the cost of that funding (Treasury debt) was the same CPI + 1% that was used to produce the above discounted present value in the first place. Actually, that’s not a bad guesstimate for the average yield of all Treasury debt. If so, then the interest expense on the $75 trillion total debt would equal $2.6 trillion, quite close to the current level of entitlement spending for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. What do we pay now in interest? About $250 billion. Our annual “lockbox” tab would rise by $2.35 trillion and our deficit would be close to 15% of GDP! The simple conclusion would be this: Unless you want to drastically reduce entitlement spending or heaven forbid raise taxes, then Pepé, you’ve got a stinker of a problem.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Budget, Credit Markets, Currency Markets, Economy, House of Representatives, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Senate, Social Security, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The National Deficit, The U.S. Government, The United States Currency (Dollar etc)

(AP) Lutheran college a hit with Jewish students

One of the hottest college campuses in the U.S. for Jewish students is also one of the unlikeliest: a small Lutheran school erected around a soaring stone chapel with a cross on top.

In what is being called a testament to word of mouth in the Jewish community, approximately 34 percent of Muhlenberg College’s 2,200 students are Jewish. And the biggest gains have come in the past five years or so.

Perhaps equally noteworthy is how Muhlenberg has responded, by offering a kosher menu at the student union, creating a partnership with the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, and expanding its Hillel House, a social hub for Jews.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Education, Judaism, Lutheran, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, Young Adults

Thomas Friedman–Looking for Luck in Libya

There is an old saying in the Middle East that a camel is a horse that was designed by a committee. That thought came to my mind as I listened to President Obama trying to explain the intervention of America and its allies in Libya ”” and I don’t say that as criticism. I say it with empathy. This is really hard stuff, and it’s just the beginning.

When an entire region that has been living outside the biggest global trends of free politics and free markets for half a century suddenly, from the bottom up, decides to join history ”” and each one of these states has a different ethnic, tribal, sectarian and political orientation and a loose coalition of Western and Arab states with mixed motives trying to figure out how to help them ”” well, folks, you’re going to end up with some very strange-looking policy animals. And Libya is just the first of many hard choices we’re going to face in the “new” Middle East.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, House of Representatives, Libya, Middle East, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Senate

(USA Today) The new face of sex and relationships among young adults

The relationship game among college-age adults today is a muddle of seemingly contradictory trends. Recent studies indicate that traditional dating on campuses has taken a back seat to no-strings relationships in which bonds between young men and women are increasingly brief and sexual. (A new website to arrange these encounters that began at the University of Chicago last month now is expanding to other campuses.)

But even as casual sex ”” often called “hookups” or “friends with benefits” ”” is a dominant part of campus life, a new report by the National Center for Health Statistics indicates the percentages of men and women 18-24 who say they are virgins also are increasing.

It all reflects an emerging paradigm that is altering the nature of sex and relationships among young adults: fewer men than women on campuses, a more openly sexual society that often takes cues from media, and a declining desire to make relationship commitments early in life.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Education, Sexuality, Young Adults

(ACNS) 2011 Standing Committee Bulletin – Day 4

In brief:

Bible in the Life of the Church: “Hermeneutical gap between academy and pew.”
Lent course on fifth Mark of Mission for the Communion in 2012
Theological college principals from across the Communion to meet in Canterbury
ACC-15 set for October/November 2012

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal

Foreclosure Aid Fell Short, and Is Fading

Last summer, as President Obama’s premier plan to save millions of Americans from foreclosure foundered, the administration tossed a new life preserver to homeowners.

Officials unveiled a $1 billion program to offer loans to help the jobless pay their mortgages until they could find work again. It was supposed to take effect before the end of the year, but as of today, the program has yet to accept any applications.

“We wait and wait, and they keep saying it’s coming,” said James Tyson, 50, a Philadelphia homeowner who lost his job a year ago.

That could be an epitaph for the administration’s broader foreclosure prevention effort…

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, House of Representatives, Housing/Real Estate Market, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Senate, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The U.S. Government

Nevada Workshop on faith looks doubts in the eye

Faith is a journey and facing doubts is part of the journey, according to Frank Schaeffer, a best-selling New York Times author and popular blogger for the Huffington Post.

Schaeffer will present a workshop “Articulating an Authentic Faith for People Who Don’t Like Religion (or Atheism)” on Saturday, sharing his journey from conservative evangelical beliefs to joining the Eastern Orthodox Church.

“I tell people my own doubts, my own story. People aren’t used to hearing people share doubts,” Schaeffer said Monday in a phone interview.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Adult Education, Evangelicals, Orthodox Church, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

Brian Whiteside (Irish Times) Think carefully before answering census question on religion

The census looms and included in it we have Question 12, which deals with religion. “What is your religion?” it asks boldly, assuming everyone has one. It lists the options: Roman Catholic, Church of Ireland, Islam, Presbyterian, Orthodox; it then gives a space, two rows of boxes, for “Other, write in your religion.” Then, under these two rows of boxes, comes option 7: “No religion.”

One would have thought a more sensible way of framing the question might have been to start by asking: “Do you have a religion?” This could have been followed by a number of options for those marking the Yes box whereas those opting for No would go straight to the next question. But this suggestion, made by the Humanist Association of Ireland (HAI) following an invitation by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) for suggestions regarding possible improvements in the census, was rejected on the basis it would make historical comparisons difficult. This must certainly mean not many suggestions would be adopted.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, England / UK, Ireland, Religion & Culture

(ENS) House of Bishops meeting ends with an eye toward the church in the 21st century

The Episcopal Church’s House of Bishops concluded its six-day retreat meeting at the Kanuga Conference Center in Hendersonville, North Carolina, continuing the theme “selection, recruitment and formation of young leaders,” preparing the church for the opportunities and challenges of the 21st century.

“We talked about recruiting, forming and educating young leaders, and that has a great deal to do with inviting members of the church and leaders to get outside church buildings and structures to meet seekers,” said Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori during a closing news conference on March 30. “That was a significant part of our conversation.”

During their March 25-30 meeting, the bishops addressed several themes, including the relationship between Christianity and Islam, how to reach young adults with the gospel, and the Anglican Covenant, a set of principles intended to bind the Anglican Communion in spite of cultural and theological differences.

Read it all.

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

A Message from the Provincial Synod of the Church of the Province of West Africa

The Synod of the Church of the Province of West Africa (CPWA), meeting in Conakry, Guinea from Monday, March 21 to Friday, March 25, 2011 under the overarching theme “TURN BACK, RECOVER YOUR DEAR LOVE (Revelation 2:5), among other things engaged the socio-economic-political context in which the Province fulfills her God-given Mission, without which the Church has no definition and clear identity.

While giving thanks to God for the abundant grace of natural and mineral resources such as gold, manganese, bauxite, diamonds, oil and vast expanses of rich soil, we also had reason to be pained by and to be penitent for the numerous and seemingly incessant hardships and misfortunes made manifest in political instability, wanton destruction of human life and property, displaced and in-between peoples. We are struck by the irony that the region so well endured by God has become almost synonymous with disease, especially HIV/AIDS and other preventable diseases and poverty, a code for exclusion and marginalization of people from the bounty of God.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Province of West Africa, Anglican Provinces

A Prayer for the Feast Day of John Donne

Almighty God, the root and fountain of all being: Open our eyes to see, with thy servant John Donne, that whatsoever hath any being is a mirror in which we may behold thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church History, Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Poetry & Literature, Preaching / Homiletics, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O God, who through thy Son has taught us that a house divided against itself must fall: Save us, we beseech thee, from the danger of a divided allegiance; unite our hearts to fear thy name; and grant that in all our course of life our eye may be single and our purpose one; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Henry Alford

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by one man’s obedience many will be made righteous. Law came in, to increase the trespass; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Romans 5:19-21

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

House of Bishops daily account, evening of March 29

Bishop Dabney Smith of Southwest Florida introduced the topic for the evening: Selection Recruitment and Formation of Young Leadership. HOB discussed questions in table groups….

Read it all.

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

(Guardian) Issue of Trans Clergy Increasingly Coming to the Fore

Last week, the Rev Dr Christina Beardsley, vice-chair of Changing Attitude, a network of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and heterosexual members of the Church of England, was one of the voices featured on’s week of short films featuring trans people and faith.

While the US Episcopal church developed a maverick reputation within the Anglican communion for blessing same sex marriages and ordaining gay and lesbian clergy, the House of Bishops of the General Synod of the Church of England’s report Some Issues in Human Sexuality, issued in 2003, contained a chapter titled “Transsexualism”. Currently, one can find about a half dozen trans clergy in the UK and US. These numbers are imprecise, as some clergy do not wish to go public beyond the scope of their individual parish or diocese ”“ a concern that’s understandable given that the trans community seldom receives even the legal protections afforded gays and lesbians .

Beardsley, who was ordained for 23 years prior to her transition in 2001, observes that “some within the Church of England feel the issue of trans clergy has been settled” by citing such cases as the Rev Carol Stone and the Rev Sarah Jones. However, she says: “Not all trans clergy have been supported by their bishop, as these two priests were, and some have been excluded from full-time ministry because of Church of England opt-outs from UK equality legislation.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Episcopal Church (TEC), Health & Medicine, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Psychology, Sexuality, TEC Bishops, TEC Parishes

Food Inflation Kept Hidden in Tinier Bags

With unemployment still high, companies in recent months have tried to camouflage price increases by selling their products in tiny and tinier packages. So far, the changes are most visible at the grocery store, where shoppers are paying the same amount, but getting less.

For Lisa Stauber, stretching her budget to feed her nine children in Houston often requires careful monitoring at the store. Recently, when she cooked her usual three boxes of pasta for a big family dinner, she was surprised by a smaller yield, and she began to suspect something was up.

“Whole wheat pasta had gone from 16 ounces to 13.25 ounces,” she said. “I bought three boxes and it wasn’t enough ”” that was a little embarrassing. I bought the same amount I always buy, I just didn’t realize it, because who reads the sizes all the time?”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Dieting/Food/Nutrition, Economy, Energy, Natural Resources

Earthquake fear 'final straw' for Ngaio church in New Zealand

Fear of a brick bell tower crushing worshippers if an earthquake should strike has ended services at a Wellington church.

The latest Christchurch earthquake was the “final straw” in deciding to close All Saints Church in Ngaio, Onslow Anglican parish vicar Archdeacon Monty Black said.

“People were looking at ways of how to get out of the building in the event of the earthquake, which was rather distracting them from worship.”

Engineers deemed the 1928 brick building, in particular the tower, a serious earthquake risk. The final Eucharist was celebrated on March 20.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * General Interest, Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, Anglican Provinces, Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc., Parish Ministry

A message to the people of the worldwide Anglican Communion from the Primate of Japan

Two weeks have passed since the devastating earthquake on the 11th March. At least I have been able to visit the devastated area in Sendai. The night of the 26th March I flew from Tokyo to Yamagata Airport. The next morning I entered Sendai City. Sendai is the main city of the Tohoku region where the Cathedral of Tohoku Diocese of Nippon Sei Ko Kai (the Anglican Church in Japan) is located.

On Sunday morning, I visited the Cathedral (Sendai Christ Church) and saw that parts of the walls had fallen down, the walls were cracked. It looked to me as the whole building was lopsided. On the floor of the Cathedral there were various piles of goods sent from churches in different parts of Japan such as foodstuff, fuel and clothing. Because of the frequent aftershocks, the church council members have decided that it is too dangerous to use the Cathedral for worship, so they are having services in the nearby church hall.

In Sendai City they have restored water and electricity supplies, but the supply of gas to houses has not been restored. Although food is available it is still very difficult to get hold of petrol and other fuel. So some of the parishioners who gathered for worship on the Sunday walked a long distance to get there. Due to the continuing aftershocks, some people go to bed fully clothed, wearing shoes. There are those who have not slept at all since the earthquake and look exhausted. The Bishop of Tohoku Hiromichi Kato who preached at eucharist, he tried to encourage the congregation by saying that their faith would lead them to hope even through the hardship and difficulties of the present situation.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, - Anglican: Primary Source, Asia, Japan, Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.

(Reuters) Jerusalem Anglican bishop appeals Israel's residency denial

Jerusalem’s Anglican bishop, a Palestinian, is engaged in a legal battle with Israel over its refusal to extend his residency permit, a church official said on Wednesday.

The official, who declined to be named, said Israel’s Interior Ministry had written to Bishop Suheil Dawani and accused him of improper land dealings on behalf of the church and the Palestinian Authority, allegations he denies.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Israel, Law & Legal Issues, Middle East, Religion & Culture, The Episcopal Church of Jerusalem and the Middle East

Christopher Whalen–As Obama and Congress fiddle, America liquidates housing sector

I estimate that Fannie and Freddie alone are hiding $200 billion worth of bad loans on their books simply because there is no market for these foreclosed homes. Ditto for the largest servicer banks such as Wells Fargo, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup. To clean up this mess with finality is going to cost $1 trillion or so in round numbers. But nobody in Washington wants to go there.

The Obama Administration and the Congress need to put aside their respective fantasy world views and focus on the horrible economic reality ongoing in the housing and banking sectors. It may be that the degree of self-delusion in Washington has reached the point that only another financial catastrophe can wake us from out collective distraction. But if President Obama really believes he can win reelection with housing prices falling from now till November 2012, then perhaps those who liken him to Louis XIV are right.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, House of Representatives, Housing/Real Estate Market, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Senate, The U.S. Government

Frederick Schmidt–Youth Ministry, New Vocations, and the Future of the Church

According to data gathered by the Pension Fund for the Episcopal Church, in 2002 there were 13,616 clergy. Of those, thirty were under the age of 30, 195 were under the age of 35, and 399 were under the age of 40. Today, the average age at ordination is 44 and the average age of active Episcopal clergy is 54.

The age demographics in the pew are no better. In 1965, the Episcopal Church had 3.6 million members and Episcopalians constituted 1.9 percent of the U.S. population. Since 1965, however, membership has declined precipitously. The net result is a graying church.

The average Episcopalian is 57 years old. If that benchmark does not change, roughly half of the church’s membership will die in the next eighteen years. And that is as good as it gets. Since 60 percent of Episcopal congregations have a membership of 100 or less, the rate of decline will probably pick up speed.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Data, Young Adults

(Guardian) Saudi Arabia prints 1.5m copies of religious edict banning protests

Saudi Arabia is printing 1.5m copies of an edict by religious scholars outlawing protests in the conservative kingdom as un-Islamic, the state news agency said.

Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter and a major US ally, is an absolute monarchy that does not tolerate any form of public dissent.

It managed to stifle an attempt to stage a mass protest on 11 March with a large security presence on the streets.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Law & Legal Issues, Middle East, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Saudi Arabia

(BBC) Jordan battles to regain 'priceless' Christian relics

They could be the earliest Christian writing in existence, surviving almost 2,000 years in a Jordanian cave. They could, just possibly, change our understanding of how Jesus was crucified and resurrected, and how Christianity was born.

A group of 70 or so “books”, each with between five and 15 lead leaves bound by lead rings, was apparently discovered in a remote arid valley in northern Jordan somewhere between 2005 and 2007.

A flash flood had exposed two niches inside the cave, one of them marked with a menorah or candlestick, the ancient Jewish religious symbol.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, History, Jordan, Judaism, Middle East, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture

Archbishop Benjamin Kwashi: A Gospel Worth Dying For

In February 2006 a band of people reportedly hired to kill me came to my house. Believing that I was there although I was in another country, they tortured my wife, Gloria, from 1:30 to 3:30 a.m. They left Gloria half-dead and blind. Our son Rinji was left unconscious and our little boy Nanminen had a broken mouth. Through the miracle of medical science, Gloria healed thoroughly and regained her sight in five months.

The next year the attackers were back: this time they met me. They took me downstairs to the field outside my house, where they were going to kill me. They changed their minds and decided they would rather kill me in my bedroom. They brought me back to my bedroom and I pleaded with them for an opportunity to pray. They agreed and I got on my knees to pray. A few minutes later my wife was holding my hands in prayer.

A few more minutes later my son Rinji walked in. I screamed at him, “What are you doing? Why are you here?” He said, “Daddy, they’ve gone.” We got up and brought the whole family together and we praised the Lord until the police and the soldiers came, and throughout the day it was a song of praise.

Read it all (or watch the video which was posted a while back).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of Nigeria, Evangelism and Church Growth, Parish Ministry, Violence

(Der Spiegel) 'Can Germans Trust Merkel's About-Face on Nuclear Power?'

Chancellor Angela Merkel has responded to her party’s stinging election defeat on Sunday by pledging to speed up Germany’s exit from nuclear power.

“My view of nuclear energy has been changed by the events in Japan,” she said on Monday after a meeting of her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) to discuss the loss of the state of Baden-Württemberg, the party’s stronghold for 58 years, to the resurgent Green Party. “I have learned a lesson from what happened in Japan.”

The Greens, vehement opponents of nuclear power, surged in the rich southwestern state on a wave of public fear of nuclear power following the Fukushima accident. The party will rule the state in a coalition with the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD).

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Energy, Natural Resources, Europe, Germany, Politics in General

Anglican Communion women welcome Primates’ commitment to tackle violence against women

The commitment by Primates at the January meeting in Dublin to work to eliminate violence against women and girls has been warmly welcomed by the Communion’s International Anglican Women’s Network (IAWN).

IAWN members were part of a delegation of 80 Anglican/Episcopal women and girls who were in New York for the Fifty-fifth Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW55) at the beginning of March.

IAWN steering group member the Revd Canon Alice Medcof of the Anglican Church of Canada said the decision of the Primates’ Meeting to put in writing a range of commitments to address violence against women and girls would serve as a new impetus for the churches of the Communion to act for change. She added, however, that in discussion with IAWN women around the Communion it was clear that different cultural contexts amongst the Provinces needed different responses.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Sexuality, Violence, Women

(Zenit) Scholar Calls for Greater Numbers to Be Trained in Dealing With Occult

A scholar at an exorcism conference in Rome is indicating there’s a shortage of qualified priests to handle the problems of those who meddle in satanism and the world of the occult….

In the introductory lecture, Ferrari said that resolving problems regarding satanism or magic “can be delayed or impeded by the lack of preparation of those presbyters who do not feel up to it or who do not feel they are equipped with the necessary instruments to adequately meet the needs.”

Ferrari thus called for an “in-depth formation of an adequate number of priests” in order to address the issues more effectively, reserving for exorcists only those cases that truly are in need of their expert intervention.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Other Faiths, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Theology

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Lord Christ, almighty Saviour, we cry to thee for aid against our strong enemy. O thou who art the Stronger than the strong, deliver us, we pray thee, from the evil one, and take sole possession of our hearts and minds; that filled with thy Spirit we may henceforth devote our lives to thy service, and therein find our perfect freedom; for the honour of thy great name.

–Frank Colquhoun

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.

–Romans 5:3-5

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture