Daily Archives: April 26, 2012

Slow Down and Pray, Says Benedict XVI

The Holy Father went on to note how the saints have taught of the importance of a “profound unity of life between prayer and action, between total love of God and love for the brethren.”

He said this is a “precious reminder for us today, habituated as we are to evaluate everything based upon the criteria of productivity and efficiency.”

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Posted in * Religion News & Commentary, Other Churches, Pope Benedict XVI, Roman Catholic

U.S. soldier’s gift to Afghan workers at her base underscores divide

In a big war, Army Spec. Cherry Maurice believed that one small gesture could make a difference.

Temperatures at her mountain base plunged to 20 degrees below zero in January, and snow covered the ground. Maurice noticed that the eight Afghan workers on the outpost were coming to work in rubber flip-flops. The 35-year-old soldier labored with the men in the outpost’s kitchen, which is not much bigger than a walk-in closet. She dug into her personal savings and spent $135 to buy them eight pairs of boots.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Afghanistan, America/U.S.A., Asia, Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Parish Ministry, Politics in General, Stewardship, War in Afghanistan

The Episicopal Bishop of Nevada–My Restructuring Plan — The Montana Option

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

The Teacher of the Year Speaks on her Field

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Education

Stories from the FCA Leaders Conference–William Philip from the Church of Scotland

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, England / UK, FCA Meeting in London April 2012, Global South Churches & Primates, Other Churches, Scotland

(Washington Post) David Ignatius–Europe’s gathering economic storm

With Socialist leader Francois Hollande likely to become the next president of France, Europe’s hot populist anger is about to confront the cold austerity measures required by the euro zone, with a predictable result: a storm that rattles the foundations of the European economic house.

Financial traders and treasury ministers are debating this week just how much damage this political-economic collision will bring. Some argue that it could take down the structure entirely. Others insist that Germany, for all its insistence on austerity, will never let the structure collapse ”” and will make the necessary concessions to keep the common currency intact.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Credit Markets, Currency Markets, Economy, Euro, Europe, European Central Bank, Foreign Relations, France, Germany, Politics in General, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The Netherlands

Notable and Quotable

One must keep on pointing out that Christianity is a statement which, if false, is of no importance, and, if true, of infinite importance. The one thing it cannot be is moderately important.

–C.S Lewis, God in the Dock: Essays on Theology and Ethics (Walter Hooper, ed., Grand Rapids: Eerdmans 1994 reprint), p.101

Posted in Apologetics, Theology

Archbishopric of Canterbury: Chair of Crown Nominations Commission appointed

he Prime Minister has appointed the Rt Hon the Lord Luce KG, GCVO to be Chairman of the Crown Nominations Commission for its selection of the next Archbishop of Canterbury to succeed the Most Reverend and Rt Hon Rowan Williams. Dr Williams has announced that he will stand down on 31 December 2012.

Commenting on his appointment, Lord Luce said:” It is a great privilege to have been invited by the Prime Minister to chair the Crown Nominations Commission for the selection of the next Archbishop of Canterbury. I approach the task with humility and a strong sense of the responsibility that I and my colleagues on the Commission share….”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE)

Israeli military chief: Iran will not build nuclear bomb

Israel’s military chief said in an interview published Wednesday that he believes Iran will choose not to build a nuclear bomb, an assessment that contrasted with the gloomier statements of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and pointed to differences over the Iran issue at the top levels of Israeli leadership.

The comments by Maj. Gen Benny Gantz, who said international sanctions have begun to show results, could relieve pressure on the Obama administration and undercut efforts by Israeli political leaders to urge the United States to get as tough as possible on Iran.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Energy, Natural Resources, Foreign Relations, Iran, Israel, Middle East, Politics in General, Science & Technology

(WSJ) Elizabeth Bernstein–Calling a Truce in Mother-Daughter Conflict

Jessica Setnick was on her way to her mother’s house for dinner when she decided that she had something to say that couldn’t wait.

She sent her mom a text: “I got my hair cut today and I think it looks fine. So if you don’t like it, please don’t say anything.”

Ms. Setnick, a 39-year-old registered dietitian in Dallas, says she frequently braces herself for her mother’s disapproving remarks….

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Theology, Women, Young Adults

(Zenit) The New Pangenderism: Transgenders, Polysexuals and Sex Reassignment Surgery

Here is a response to questions on bioethics regarding issues related to sex and gender, answered by the fellows of the Culture of Life Foundation.

E. Christian Brugger writes:

This week’s ruling by the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) to make “transgender” a protected status under the 1964 Civil Rights Act is another reminder of the confusions that characterize our community’s understanding of sex and gender. Indeed, a range of sex/gender related psycho-affective conditions traditionally designated as disorders are now identified as ordered expressions of gender and sexual identity by some members of the medical profession and wider secular society. These include transgenderism, transsexualism, transvestism, bigenderism, genderqueerism, homosexuality, bisexuality, pansexuality, polysexuality and asexuality, to name a few.

This baffling multiplication of categories of sexuality often confuses people. They wonder whether the terms have any validity or whether they’re partially contrived by sexual libertines to flaunt their rejection of traditional morality.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, Health & Medicine, Law & Legal Issues, Other Churches, Politics in General, Psychology, Roman Catholic, Sexuality

(RNS) United Methodists to debate allowing non-celibate gay clergy and same-sex marriage

As nearly 1,000 delegates from across the world gather in Tampa, Fla., for the United Methodist Church’s General Conference, gay and lesbian activists have printed pamphlets promoting their cause in five languages, including Portuguese and Swahili.

The UMC’s global reach, stretching from the Philippines to Philadelphia, compels the multilingual lobbying. Nearly 40 percent of the delegates, who meet through May 4, live outside the United States, according to church leaders.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Methodist, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (Other denominations and faiths), Theology, Theology: Salvation (Soteriology), Theology: Scripture

Finances, 'dream weddings' can lead to long engagements

Amanda Gooley andfiancé Andrew Faison are approaching their fifth anniversary ”” of being engaged.

They’ve had plenty of teasing from their friends about waiting so long ”” especially since they grew up in neighboring small towns in North Carolina and say getting married after high school or during college is “kind of what you do,” says Gooley, 24.

Before you click the link, guess the avergae cost of a wedding in 2011. Then read it all and find the answer.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Economy, Marriage & Family, Men, Personal Finance, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Women, Young Adults

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O God our Father, let us find grace in thy sight so as to have grace to serve thee acceptably with reverence and godly fear; and further grace not to receive thy grace in vain, nor to neglect it and fall from it, but to stir it up and grow in it, and to persevere in it unto the end of our lives; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Lancelot Andrewes (1555-1626)

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

And God spoke all these words, saying, “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. “You shall have no other gods before me. “You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them; for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments. “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain. “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work; but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God; in it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your manservant, or your maidservant, or your cattle, or the sojourner who is within your gates; for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day and hallowed it. “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which the LORD your God gives you. “You shall not kill. “You shall not commit adultery. “You shall not steal. “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his ass, or anything that is your neighbor’s.” Now when all the people perceived the thunderings and the lightnings and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking, the people were afraid and trembled; and they stood afar off, and said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we will hear; but let not God speak to us, lest we die.” And Moses said to the people, “Do not fear; for God has come to prove you, and that the fear of him may be before your eyes, that you may not sin.” And the people stood afar off, while Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.

–Exodus 20:1-21

Posted in Uncategorized

(USA Today) Shifts seen in support for death penalty

The campaign to abolish the death penalty has been freshly invigorated this month in a series of actions that supporters say represents increasing evidence that America may be losing its taste for capital punishment.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Capital Punishment, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Religion & Culture, Theology

(CDN) Bombers Attack Center in Christian Area of Jos, Nigeria

One person was killed and nine others were injured last night after suspected Islamic extremists attacked a TV viewing center in a Christian area of Jos where a crowd had gathered to watch soccer.

At about 10:15 p.m. at the viewing center, one of many such establishments popular in Nigeria for watching soccer matches, the attackers drove past the site and threw an explosive device at hundreds of Christians watching the match, eyewitnesses told Compass.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Africa, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Nigeria, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Terrorism, Violence

Bayern Munich Wins on Penalty Kicks Against Real Madrid

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Europe, Germany, Men, Spain, Sports

Richard Spencer–In Egypt, even the Islamists are playing nice

These Islamists could teach us a thing or two about democracy. When the Nour Party, which speaks for Egypt’s ultra-radical Salafi movement ”“ the one with the long beards that wants no-questions-asked sharia, including bans on bikinis, booze, and Western bankers ”“ set about deciding which candidate to endorse for the presidential elections, its leaders put together an 11-strong committee. On it were two practising psychologists.

One of the interviewees was Hazem Abu Ismail, a charismatic lawyer and preacher with a big grassroots following, who believes in all the things the party believes in, and who everyone assumed would get its backing. But the psychologists threw in a spanner. He was too emotional, they said: too egotistical to be president. The one thing the party knew, its sharp-suited spokesman Nader Baker told me, was that the era of the strongman was over.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Egypt, Islam, Middle East, Other Faiths, Politics in General