Daily Archives: September 22, 2011

(USA Today) More college officials learn about applicants from Facebook

The number of college admissions officials using Facebook to learn more about an applicant has quadrupled in the past year, underscoring the effect social media has on U.S. culture and academic life, a survey shows. Googling is nearly as prevalent.

The rise suggests a growing acceptance of the practice, despite concerns that it invades student privacy.

“This is the world we live in now,” says Paul Marthers, vice president for enrollment at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. “If you were able to find out that somebody misrepresented themselves in their application, I think it could be used to help you make a decision.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Education, Young Adults

Jeff Walton–Bishops Take Different Paths in Recalling 9/11

Here’s a quick test for you. On the tenth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, the senior bishops of the two Anglican provinces in the United States gave sermons commemorating the events of that fateful day. See whether you can identify who made the following statements””a) Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori or b) Anglican Church in North America Archbishop Robert Duncan.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), History, Presiding Bishop, Terrorism, Theology

(ACNS) Diocese of Hyderabad issues Pakistan Flood Appeal

The Diocese of Hyderabad has launched an appeal for funds to help its local flood-stricken community, and the ACT Alliance has issued an appeal for Pakistan ”“ hit by severe flooding for the second time in just two years.

Over 5.4 million people have been affected by the floods that have hit Sindh province, southern Punjab and north-eastern Balochistan. Already 248 people have died, and communities that had barely recovered from the devastating floods of last year have seen their homes and livelihoods destroyed a second time.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, Asia, Charities/Non-Profit Organizations, Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc., Pakistan, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Care

In South Africa Faith leaders pledge to fight climate change

The Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI) has called on people of all faiths to fill the Kings Park stadium in Durban on November 27, a day before the UN Conference of the Parties is due to begin, for a concert and prayer meeting

The faith leaders gathered signed petitions yesterday demanding that world leaders commit themselves to the fight against climate change.

“Those collected will be sent to negotiators to show them the role that faith-based organisations play ”“ this fight belongs to us all,” said Bishop Nkosinathi Ndwandwe of the Anglican Diocese of KwaZulu-Natal.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces

In Canada, Anglican Church reaches out to commuters

Some GO Transit commuters will get a gesture of good faith as the Anglican Church of Canada welcomes Barrie residents back to all congregations.

In conjunction with the church’s international Back to Church Sunday event, members of the clergy will be on GO train platforms early Thursday morning with a token for city residents.

“This Sunday is Back to Church Sunday and we just want to encourage everyone of every faith to visit their place of worship this weekend,” said. Rev. Stephen Pessah, from St. Margaret of Scotland Anglican Church in Barrie.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canada, Evangelism and Church Growth, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

Lindisfarne Anglican Grammar School Principal–'Verbal sewer' Facebook harming children

[Principal Chris] Duncan said he normally wrote an 800-word article on education or school issues, but he was prompted to take a different approach after having to help a 16-year-old student who suffered serious abuse on Facebook.

“It was one of those reflex actions,” he said.

“I put it [the newsletter] out and thought this is going to offend half of the school community, but the feedback I’ve had is overwhelmingly positive.”

Mr Duncan said he was aware of students who had been sent into an “appalling state” due to abuse they received on Facebook, with some children being more vulnerable than others.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Social Networking, Australia / NZ, Blogging & the Internet, Children, Education, Psychology

(BBC) French women face fine over niqab

Two French women who continue to wear the full-face veil in defiance of a new law banning it in France are set to appear in court for sentencing.

Hind Amas and Kenza Drider were caught wearing the niqab in public outside Meaux town hall, eastern Paris, in May.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Europe, France, Islam, Law & Legal Issues, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, Women

(Telegraph) Afghanistan is lurching towards a civil war

When Afghan insurgents laid waste to government buildings in Kabul last week, the US ambassador explained, perhaps in case we’d misunderstood the 24-hour siege, that “this really is not a very big deal”. A day earlier he’d lamented that “the biggest problem in Kabul is traffic”. Apparently not.

A week on, someone has blown up Afghanistan’s former president, Burhanuddin Rabbani, in the heart of the capital. This is a big deal. It shatters the idea that our enemies are on the ropes, and pushes the country closer to civil war.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Afghanistan, Asia, Foreign Relations, Politics in General, War in Afghanistan

(CNN Belief Blog) A rough decade for American congregations

A new decade-long survey of American congregations shows religious health and vitality are weaker than they were 10 years ago. While the survey showed that many congregations are adopting new technologies and innovative worship, there were steep drops in financial health and attendance at weekly worship services.

The Hartford Institute for Religion Research released the study’s findings Saturday in a report titled “A Decade of Change in American Congregations, 2000 ”“ 2010” authored by David A. Roozen.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Episcopal Church (TEC), History, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

(RNS) Failing Churches Find New Life as Outposts for Megachurches

Five years ago, Living Word Church had dwindled to 40 members, had lost its founding pastor and was unable to pack more than about 80 people into its 280-seat sanctuary and unsure of the future.

Now, it’s part of one of the nation’s largest megachurches””and could serve as a model for the thousands of small U.S. churches that are closed every year.

“The story’s pretty amazing,” said the Rev. Layne Schranz, associate pastor at Church of the Highlands, a Birmingham megachurch that attracts an average of more than 13,500 across its six campuses.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Evangelicals, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

(VOA) Zimbabwe Anglican Dispute Returns to Supreme Court at Justice's Bidding

Zimbabwe Supreme Court Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku on Thursday was to hear further arguments in a long-running case pitting former Harare Bishop Nolbert Kunonga against a new Anglican administration appointed by the Church of the Province of Central Africa, headed by current Harare Bishop Chad Gandiya.

At stake in the case are Anglican church assets including churches and other properties, some well beyond the geographical bounds of the diocese.

Kunonga resigned from the Anglican church and was later excommunicated, so there are no religious issues at stake in the tangled legal battle.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Law & Legal Issues, Religion & Culture, Zimbabwe

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Philander Chase

Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ is the pioneer and perfecter of our faith We give thee heartfelt thanks for the pioneering spirit of thy servant Philander Chase, and for his zeal in opening new frontiers for the ministry of thy Church. Grant us grace to minister in Christ’s name in every place, led by bold witnesses to the Gospel of the Prince of Peace, even Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), Spirituality/Prayer, TEC Bishops

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O Lord, take thou full possession of my heart, raise there thy throne, and command there as thou dost in heaven. Being created by thee, let me live to thee. Being created for thee, let me ever act for thy glory. Being redeemed by thee, let me render to thee what is thine, and let my spirit ever cleave to thee alone; for thy name’s sake.

–John Wesley (1703-1791)

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

“All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be enslaved by anything. “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food” –and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power.

–1 Corinthians 6:12-14

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(BBC) US justice department paid $16 for muffins

Muffins costing $16 (£10) and biscuits at $10 were among the “extravagant and wasteful” conference spending by the US justice department, a report has found.

Critics voiced outrage at the spending shown in the internal audit, including $8 coffees and $32-per-person snacks.

The justice department said it accepted the findings, adding that it had taken steps since 2009 “to ensure that these problems do not occur again”.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Dieting/Food/Nutrition, Economy, The U.S. Government

IMF–Bad policy decisions could push the US into a 'lost decade' and put the eurozone into recession

Cutting its global forecasts sharply, the world’s economic watchdog said the global economy had entered a “dangerous new phase” and urged policymakers to tread a careful line between aggressive deficit reduction and growth. Central banks should stand ready to restart the printing presses to aid the recovery, it added in its twice-yearly World Economic Outlook.

“The recovery has weakened considerably. Strong policies are needed to improve the outlook and reduce the risks,” Olivier Blanchard, the IMF’s chief economist, said. “Markets have clearly become more sceptical about the ability of many countries to stabilise their public debt. Fear of the unknown is high.”

Europe’s leaders came under scathing criticism over the escalating debt crisis.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Europe, European Central Bank, Federal Reserve, Housing/Real Estate Market, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Politics in General, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The National Deficit, The U.S. Government

Trinity, Natchez, Mississippi to host symposium on slave resistance & Civil War

On September 24, 2011, from 9:00 am until 4:30 pm, Trinity Episcopal Church in Natchez, Mississippi will host a full day of free lectures entitled “No More Silence at Second Creek: Slave Resistance and the Onset of the Civil War.”

This symposium, co-sponsored by The Diocese of Mississippi, helps commemorate the 150th anniversary of a violent and little understood local episode: the planning of a slave uprising on the Second Creek plantations southeast of Natchez, and the vigilante trial and hangings of 40 enslaved people that followed.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), History, Race/Race Relations, Religion & Culture, TEC Parishes

(ENS) Diocese of Central Ecuador leadership to resign

For the “sake of the diocese” the leadership of the Episcopal Diocese of Central Ecuador ”“ including members of the Standing Committee, Bishop Luis Fernando Ruiz, the chancellor, its legal representative and all other diocesan leaders ”“ have agreed to resign by Oct. 1.

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori Sept. 20 convened a meeting of the leadership, along with Bishop Victor Scantlebury and Bishop Clay Matthews, the Episcopal Church’s bishop for pastoral development, at the Hilton Colón Hotel in Quito, where the agreement was reached.

By resigning their positions, the leadership yields its authority to the presiding bishop; she appointed Scantlebury, who had served as an assisting bishop in the Diocese of Chicago until he retired July 1 to serve as interim bishop.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * International News & Commentary, Ecuador, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, South America, TEC Conflicts