Daily Archives: April 9, 2012

(USA Today) Internet Service thieves piggyback on legitimate users

Theft of Internet service is on the rise, and experts say only a few of the culprits are being caught.

Many of the tech-savvy thieves get their free-ride through IP theft ”” the stealing of another person’s paid Internet access by tapping into their home router or cable modem. When someone uses your Internet connection for illegal activity, it could leave you as the unwitting target of a police investigation.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Law & Legal Issues, Police/Fire, Science & Technology

The Archbishop of York's Easter Messages

The resurrection of Jesus that we celebrate today shows us that nothing is beyond God’s power to make a difference, not even death. Because He went to hell and back and that means that there is always hope.

My prayer is the same for all people. I pray that you will know that God loves you and has a purpose for you. I pray that you will be inspired to become all that God has created you to be. I pray that you will be enabled to change your environment and to make it the place that God wants it to become. The challenge starts now and it is a challenge for you and for me!

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Archbishop of York John Sentamu, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter

(Bloomberg) American Universities Infected by Foreign Spies Detected by FBI

Hearkening back to Cold War anxieties, growing signs of spying on U.S. universities are alarming national security officials. As schools become more global in their locations and student populations, their culture of openness and international collaboration makes them increasingly vulnerable to theft of research conducted for the government and industry.

“We have intelligence and cases indicating that U.S. universities are indeed a target of foreign intelligence services,” Frank Figliuzzi, Federal Bureau of Investigation assistant director for counterintelligence, said in a February interview in the bureau’s Washington headquarters.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Asia, China, Defense, National Security, Military, Education, Foreign Relations, Globalization, Politics in General, Science & Technology, Young Adults

Peter Craven–Has the bell tolled on Easter's meaning?

…whatever we believe in or don’t believe in, we should suspend our disbelief about the power of this Easter story that has shaped some of the greatest imaginings of our civilisation. It was Thomas, the doubter, who said that unless he could put his hands in Jesus’ wounds, he wasn’t having a bar of it. And it was Thomas, humbled, who said: ”Lord I believe, help thou my unbelief.”

When it comes to the great religions, the affinities between Christianity and Judaism and Islam, the twinned spiritualities of Buddhism and Hinduism, there are a lot of people who would like to get beyond their ”unbelief”.
And there are plenty, too, who want to crow their unbelief like a creed that could move the stars. But this can’t change the power of the story of the man who was done to death and rose again.

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Posted in Uncategorized

(FT) Federal Reserve Injections can be hard habit to kick

Higher commodity prices, however, are a cost borne by businesses and consumers and this has mitigated the economic stimulus provided by prior bouts of QE. Higher equity prices, alas, can’t offset pain at the petrol pump and the supermarket for many consumers.

All that raises the prospect that introducing QE3 simply runs the risk of entrenching the economy in its post-financial crisis mode of a stop and start recovery.

In fact, advocates of QE3 are really betting that the Fed will err far more on the side of risking much higher inflation in the long run as it seeks to lower the unemployment rate towards 7 per cent.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Federal Reserve, History, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The U.S. Government

(Wash. Post Wonkblog) Brad Plumer–The past Friday's March jobs report: Just how bad was it?

…if anyone is eager for encouraging signs, it’s worth pointing out that the very broadest measure of unemployment actually improved this month. This is the U-6 metric, which tallies up all unemployed persons, plus people marginally attached to the labor force, plus people employed part-time for economic reasons. Jim Pethokoukis likes to call this “perhaps the truest measure of the labor market’s health.” And U-6 dropped from 14.9 percent in February to 14.5 percent in March. Anyone trying to dig around for optimistic signs should start there.

Still, it’s a weak report all around. And we’ll know in a few months if March was actually as tepid as everyone thinks. In theory, the real significance of this report should be whether it convinces Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve that a little more monetary stimulus is needed. But how likely is that? The unemployment rate is roughly in line with what the Federal Open Market Committee has been expecting. And if the Fed’s content with the current state of affairs, then more help may not be on the way after all.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Federal Reserve, Housing/Real Estate Market, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Politics in General, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The U.S. Government

(SMH) Easter faith: a reason for believing

Reason can be a corrective to the blind acceptance of certain religious beliefs and practices and atheists are correct to employ it in that service, particularly in the face of a growing fundamentalist mentality. But serious, thoughtful Christians do no less. They know that biblical scholarship can refine our understanding of the extent to which the Gospel accounts are meant to serve as recorded history and the extent to which they have been written to construe the key characters and events into the prophetic narratives of Old Testament texts. They accept that, eventually, forensic archaeology may help unravel important questions about the ultimate (human) fate of Jesus. And they encourage moral theologians in their continued speculation about the prescriptions for modern living that flow from the witness of Jesus’ life and death. Not to accept these things is to substitute the dead hand of dogma for a genuinely living faith.

But such a faith draws strength from its own internal consistency rather than historical or cultural attempts to articulate its detail. The internal consistency of Christianity was highlighted by the Kantian scholar Herbert James Paton in The Modern Predicament: A Study in the Philosophy of Religion, which was published in 1955. “It is hard to see why [people] should abandon the hope of immortality,” wrote Paton, “if their assumption of human freedom has led them to a belief in the goodness of God.” Again, this proves nothing but it captures a certain logic that only the truly irrational would deny.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Australia / NZ, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter, Religion & Culture

The Bishop of Sheffield's Easter Message 2012

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, CoE Bishops, Easter

Kendall Harmon's Easter 2012 Sermon–Resurrection Faith from Darkness, Gradually and Personally

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Posted in * By Kendall, * Christian Life / Church Life, * South Carolina, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Sermons & Teachings

In pictures: Easter Sunday celebrated around the world

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter, Globalization

Virginia Anglican Parish Celebrates Historic Faith in Property Settlement

St. Margaret’s Anglican Church, one of seven Anglican congregations that are parties to the church property case brought by The Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia, celebrates taking a stand for the Gospel truth amidst settling its property involved in the case.

The settlement calls for St. Margaret’s Anglican to turn over to the Diocese its real property, including the parcel the parish bought, improved and maintained for fifty years. St. Margaret’s Anglican will vacate the property by April 30, and will turn over to the Diocese a portion of the liquid assets on hand when the lawsuit commenced in early 2007. St. Margaret’s will retain a portion of those liquid assets and a valuable hand bell collection that was a gift to St. Margaret’s from a parishioner.
St. Margaret’s was one of many Virginia Episcopal congregations who voted overwhelmingly to disassociate from The Episcopal Church and the Diocese in order to remain faithful to the historic doctrine of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

“This settlement is good news to us,” stated Alan Clark, Senior Warden of St. Margaret’s Anglican. “We are ready to move on in our mission of proclaiming Jesus Christ. Together, putting the legal dispute behind us, we celebrate who we are as Anglicans and followers of Christ. We trust in the path God has laid for St. Margaret’s Anglican, and look forward to where He plans to use our congregation to spread His transforming love.”

The Rt. Rev. David Bena, Interim Rector of St. Margaret’s Anglican, added, “Throughout these past several years of costly court battles, I have been humbled to bear witness to St. Margaret’s faith-filled stand for the Gospel truth at whatever expense.”

“We appreciate the good faith of Diocesan officials in negotiating the settlement, and we’re thrilled to be part of growing entities such as the regional Anglican Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic (a member diocese of the Anglican Church in North America) and the Convocation of Anglicans in North America. The death and resurrection of our Lord this Holy Week remind us that God is ultimately in charge. Our parishioners are ready to fully focus our energies on preaching, teaching, healing and making disciples in Jesus’ name. We may have lost the buildings, but we’ve kept the faith!” concluded Bishop Bena.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Economy, Episcopal Church (TEC), Housing/Real Estate Market, Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Virginia

Pope Benedict XVIth’s Easter Sunday Urbi et Orbi 2012

Every Christian relives the experience of Mary Magdalene. It involves an encounter which changes our lives: the encounter with a unique Man who lets us experience all God’s goodness and truth, who frees us from evil not in a superficial and fleeting way, but sets us free radically, heals us completely and restores our dignity. This is why Mary Magdalene calls Jesus “my hope”: he was the one who allowed her to be reborn, who gave her a new future, a life of goodness and freedom from evil. “Christ my hope” means that all my yearnings for goodness find in him a real possibility of fulfilment: with him I can hope for a life that is good, full and eternal, for God himself has drawn near to us, even sharing our humanity.

But Mary Magdalene, like the other disciples, was to see Jesus rejected by the leaders of the people, arrested, scourged, condemned to death and crucified. It must have been unbearable to see Goodness in person subjected to human malice, truth derided by falsehood, mercy abused by vengeance. With Jesus’ death, the hope of all those who had put their trust in him seemed doomed. But that faith never completely failed: especially in the heart of the Virgin Mary, Jesus’ Mother, its flame burned even in the dark of night. In this world, hope can not avoid confronting the harshness of evil. It is not thwarted by the wall of death alone, but even more by the barbs of envy and pride, falsehood and violence. Jesus passed through this mortal mesh in order to open a path to the kingdom of life. For a moment Jesus seemed vanquished: darkness had invaded the land, the silence of God was complete, hope a seemingly empty word.

And lo, on the dawn of the day after the Sabbath, the tomb is found empty. Jesus then shows himself to Mary Magdalene, to the other women, to his disciples. Faith is born anew, more alive and strong than ever, now invincible since it is based on a decisive experience…

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pope Benedict XVI, Preaching / Homiletics, Roman Catholic

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Gracious Lord, we remember that thou didst accompany thy two disciples as they journeyed to Emmaus. Do thou go with us, O Lord, on our journey through this world. Guide us, uphold us, strengthen us; make our hearts to burn within us; and evermore manifest thyself to our souls in gracious and heavenly power. For thine own name’s sake we ask it.

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

From the Morning Scripture Readings

Now I would remind you, brethren, in what terms I preached to you the gospel, which you received, in which you stand, by which you are saved, if you hold it fast–unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. then he appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.

–1 Corinthians 15:1-7

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Prayer for Easter Sunday Evening

Lord Jesus, risen from the dead and alive for evermore: Stand in our midst tonight as in the upper room; show us thy hands and thy side; speak thy peace to our hearts and minds; and send us forth into the world as thy witnesses; for the glory of thy name.

–The Rev. John R. W. Stott (appropriate in any year but especially somehow in this one in which he passed from this world unto the next–KSH)

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

From the Daily Bible Readings

Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the LORD; awake, as in days of old, the generations of long ago. Was it not thou that didst cut Rahab in pieces, that didst pierce the dragon? Was it not thou that didst dry up the sea, the waters of the great deep; that didst make the depths of the sea a way for the redeemed to pass over? And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

–Isaiah 51:9-11

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Easter, Theology, Theology: Scripture