Daily Archives: January 25, 2012

Omar Sacirbey–Bodily Desecration Is Disturbing””but Why?

Desecrating enemy dead is not always a vengeful impulse, and in some cultures even has a religious component. At the same time, disgust at the desecration of the dead is not always a simple case of demanding respect for a fallen human being, but also carries religious implications, even on one’s journey in the afterlife.

“Virtually all religions have reverence for the dead. Different religions, especially the monotheistic faiths, don’t accept any desecration of their own dead, or the enemy’s dead,” said Carl Raschke, a religious studies professor at the University of Denver.

For example, Muslims believe that after death their bodies will slowly disintegrate, except the tailbone, which on the Day of Resurrection will regenerate into the complete human being. For that reason, most Muslims reject cremation because it destroys the tailbone, making resurrection impossible.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Anthropology, Death / Burial / Funerals, Eschatology, Islam, Other Faiths, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Theology

Sewanee's John McCardell at Mere Anglicanism 2012–The Great Beaufort Revival of 1831

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, * South Carolina, Church History, Ecumenical Relations, Episcopal Church (TEC), Evangelism and Church Growth, Parish Ministry

(Telegraph) Stephen Hough–'Do not touch me': the wisdom of Anglican thresholds

The Church of England’s evening service, adapted after the Reformation from the monastic hour of Vespers, is a wondrous phenomenon. Even the word ‘Evensong’ is poetic, and it seems to chime in perfect harmony with England’s seasons: Autumn’s melancholy, early evening light; the merry crackle of Winter frost; Spring’s awakening, or the lazy, protracted sun strained through the warmed windows of a Summer afternoon.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry

Bruce Robison's Sermon from this Past Sunday in Epiphany

“Follow me, and I will made you fishers of men.” Fish for people.

We see and experience this moment of course as a familiar and recurring theme and pattern of the whole Biblical story. God calls Abraham to leave the land of his Father and to come to a new land, where he will establish a new nation loyal to God alone. God calls Moses at the burning bush to leave his father-in-law’s homestead in the Sinai and to return to Egypt and to lead his people from slavery to freedom again, renewing their covenant with him and to be restored in their loyalties and to return again to the Promised Land. God calls Samuel as he goes to sleep in the shrine at Shiloh. David from the sheepfolds of his father Jesse. The great prophets. Elijah and Elisha. Jeremiah. Again and again through the Old Testament. And of course as we think through the New Testament we would remember as well the dramatic vocational experience of Paul as he is thrown from his horse on the Road to Damascus. God calls.

The compilers of our lectionary give us the contrast this morning as we remember what happened with the Prophet Jonah. We remember how he is called at first by God and commanded to carry the message of repentance into foreign territory, the capital city of the ancient enemy. Fearful of what might happen to him if he were to attempt that mission, Jonah hightails it out of town in exactly the opposite direction, finally getting on a ship and sailing away. And of course we remember that story. The storm, the great fish. And then we see the second part of the story this morning. Amazingly, improbably, Jonah’s mission is successful. He gets there. He calls the enemy to repentance. And they hear the message and immediately turn away from their corrupt and evil ways to experience God’s mercy and forgiveness. But then this odd twist: Jonah isn’t satisfied. He apparently has his own agenda. It’s almost like he’s embarrassed.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Soteriology, TEC Parishes, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Albuquerque Journal) Many Episcopal Church Members Feel ”˜Betrayed’

Church leaders say the announcement reopened old wounds and created new ones among Episcopalians here.

“When he left (in 2007), it was painful, but we respected his decision,” said the Rev. Daniel Gutierrez, canon to the ordinary for the 18,000-member Diocese of the Rio Grande. “But then for him to turn around and take this position and try to lure other priests is a betrayal.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Ecumenical Relations, Episcopal Church (TEC), Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Pope Benedict XVI, Roman Catholic, TEC Bishops, Theology

Dean Justyn Terry at Mere Anglicanism 2012–Educating for Anglican Ministry Today

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Seminary / Theological Education, Theology

(BBC) Egypt rallies mark anti-Mubarak uprising anniversary

Thousands of Egyptians are gathering in Cairo’s Tahrir Square to mark one year since the start of the uprising which toppled President Hosni Mubarak.

Some are celebrating the success of Islamist parties in the first post-Mubarak elections, while others are calling for further political reforms.

The decades-old state of emergency law has been partially lifted to mark the anniversary.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Egypt, History, Middle East, Politics in General

WSJ–Meet the Marriage Killer–It's More Common Than Adultery and Potentially As Toxic…

Guess the subject first, then read it all.

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

LA Times–Obama delivers a confrontational State of the Union address

By using his State of the Union speech to draw sharp contrasts with Republicans on such high-profile issues as taxes and the housing market, President Obama opened an election-year debate on the role of government that could be more intense than any in decades.

Warning Congress that “I intend to fight obstruction with action,” he painted a confrontational picture that stands in sharp contrast with the conciliatory approach taken by the last Democrat to seek a second term, Bill Clinton.

In fact, Obama’s strategy more closely resembles that ofGeorge W. Bushin 2004, who used polarizing issues to increase turnout of his supporters and made few concessions to the center. The approach increases the chance that if he wins a second term, Obama could claim a mandate for his program. It also carries more risk of failure in a nation still deeply skeptical of government activism.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, House of Representatives, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Senate

Archbishop Benjamin Kwashi at Mere Anglicanism 2012–Recovering a Dynamic Anglican Missiology

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Provinces, Church History, Church of Nigeria, Evangelism and Church Growth, Missions, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Soteriology, Theology

Fantastic Stuff–Listening to the Northern Lights

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Science & Technology

Google to merge user data across more services

Google is overhauling the way it treats user data, linking information across its array of email, video and social-networking services so that information gathered in one place can be used in another….

the changes could irk privacy critics because of the sheer volume of information collected ”” including your location, list of contacts and the contents of your email.

Google hopes to improve the user experience across its different services and give advertisers a better way to find customers.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Blogging & the Internet, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Media, Science & Technology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Conversion of Saint Paul

O God, who by the preaching of thine apostle Paul hast caused the light of the Gospel to shine throughout the world: Grant, we beseech thee, that we, having his wonderful conversion in remembrance, may show forth our thankfulness unto thee for the same by following the holy doctrine which he taught; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Eternal Light, shine into our hearts;
Eternal Goodness, deliver us from evil;
Eternal Power, be our support;
Eternal Wisdom, scatter the darkness of our ignorance;
Eternal Pity, have mercy upon us;
that with all our heart and mind and soul and strength we may seek thy face and be brought by thine infinite mercy to thy holy presence; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


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

From the Morning Bible Readings

The earth, O LORD, is full of thy steadfast love; teach me thy statutes! Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O LORD, according to thy word. Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I believe in thy commandments.

–Psalm 119:64-66

Posted in Uncategorized

(Indiana Governor) Mitch Daniels’s response to the State of the Union

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Office of the President, Politics in General, State Government

The Full Text of President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Foreign Relations, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama

The Latest Numbers from Intrade on the Republican Primary and Nomination Process

As I was writing this, Newt Gingrich is in the high 50’s to win Florida (Romney is low 40’s) and Romney to get the eventual nomination is 66%.

Check it out.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Office of the President, Politics in General

(RNS) Gene Robinson Documentary takes center stage at Sundance

The film follows Robinson as the church grapples with how to handle lesbian and gay issues. Robinson’s election brought to a head divisions between liberal and conservative Episcopalians, and between the U.S. church and more conservative members of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

Filmmakers followed Robinson to England in 2008, where he was excluded from the Anglicans’ Lambeth Conference of bishops. And they followed him to the Episcopal Church’s 2009 General Convention, where leaders voted to allow blessings of same-sex marriages, civil unions or domestic partnerships (where legal) and allow gay men and women to become bishops.

Along the way, they interviewed Robinson, his family and other church leaders, many of whom supported his quest for equality and some of whom did not. In one scene, a woman sobs that she is torn between wanting to do what’s best for the people around her while also remaining true to Scripture.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, Instruments of Unity, Movies & Television, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Maine Episcopal Priest suspended for two years for sexual misconduct

Heidi Shott, a diocese spokeswoman, said the disciplinary action against Fles is one of the first since the General Convention of the Episcopal Church in 2009 revised the canons known as Title lV “to make clergy discipline first and foremost a process of discernment, mediation and pastoral response rather than one that is legalistic and judicial.”

“It’s fairly safe to say, since the process was just approved in July, that this is one of the first,” Shott said Monday. “The way it’s changed is that the former clergy discipline was based on military discipline, so it was definitely more on the judgmental side. The new process is to be more like a board of review a lawyer or a doctor might have. It’s looking for a more reconciling process than in the past, and it’s just now being tested.”

An intake report was presented on Sept. 22, 2011, to the church’s Reference Panel of the Disciplinary Board. The panel requested additional investigation, so an investigator was hired and interviewed 18 people over the course of eight weeks.

The result is that Fles has signed an accord, which satisfies the requirements of the church’s disciplinary rules.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Polity & Canons, Theology