Daily Archives: June 23, 2012

California Episcopal Priest in Maine to discuss combining feminine and masculine in worship

In a conscious effort to reinvigorate Western ritual, [Matthew] Fox deconstructed forms of worship inherited from the modern era, such as sitting in benches and being read to, being preached at and singing from hymnals. In the late 1990s in California, he incorporated the premodern practice of dance with modern music and computer technology to create what he called Techno Cosmic Masses.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Liturgy, Music, Worship, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Theology

(AP) Poll: Obama’s endorsement of Same Sex Marriage leaves both sides more entrenched

President Barack Obama’s endorsement of gay marriage appears to have made Americans on both sides of the issue even more entrenched in their positions, firing up his young, liberal backers and intensifying opposition from Republicans and conservatives, according to a new poll.

Overall, his announcement last month that he supported gay marriage did little to shift the nation’s views on the subject, with the country remaining evenly divided on it, the Associated Press-GfK survey found. And people still seem to favor him over Republican presidential rival Mitt Romney when it comes to handling social issues.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Sexuality

Archbishop-elect Ntagali faces an uphill task

Yesterday, the House of Bishops elected Bishop Stanley Ntagali as the eighth Archbishop of the Church of Uganda. The new archbishop is expected to be dedicated and hardworking, if he is to overcome challenges faced by his predecessors and the entire Anglican Church.

The archbishop has been elected at a time when the Church House project is underway. This project started in 1970s, but its actual construction was realised during the tenure of Archbishop Luke Orombi. Although work is progressing, some sources at Namirembe revealed that most of the money used to fund the project is borrowed.

Some Christians, especially in Kampala, are worried that if the church fails to get the money, it will be forced to sell off its land, especially in Kampala, to clear the debt. It is going to be the work of the Archbishop to look for more funds to complete the project.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of Uganda

Bishop Stanley Ntagali to be next Archbishop of Uganda

The House of Bishops, comprising leaders of the 34 dioceses in the country, elected the new Archbishop this morning after a week-long retreat at Lweza Conference Centre.

Ntagali becomes the eighth person to assume the seat in the history of the Church of Uganda….

The new archbishop will be consecrated on December 16 at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Namirembe.

Read it all and I found a nice picture there.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of Uganda

On Vacation and Sick? European Court Says Take Another

For most Europeans, almost nothing is more prized than their four to six weeks of guaranteed annual vacation leave. But it was not clear just how sacrosanct that time off was until Thursday, when Europe’s highest court ruled that workers who happened to get sick on vacation were legally entitled to take another vacation.

“The purpose of entitlement to paid annual leave is to enable the worker to rest and enjoy a period of relaxation and leisure,” the Court of Justice of the European Union, based in Luxembourg, ruled in a case involving department store workers in Spain. “The purpose of entitlement to sick leave is different, since it enables a worker to recover from an illness that has caused him to be unfit for work.”

With much of Europe mired in recession, governments struggling to reduce budget deficits and officials trying to combat high unemployment, the ruling is a reminder of just how hard it is to shake up long-established and legally protected labor practices that make it hard to put more people to work and revive sinking economies.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Europe, Foreign Relations, Health & Medicine, Law & Legal Issues, Politics in General

Because of Rule Changes this week, States Face Pressure on Pension Shortfalls

The new rules could hit pension plans in states like Illinois and New Jersey particularly hard, and even raise borrowing costs for certain municipalities, analysts say. “This could be the event that incites a bigger policy response than what we’ve seen so far,” says Matt Fabian, managing director at Municipal Market Advisors, a research firm.

The exact impact of the new rules by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board isn’t clear. According to researchers at Boston College, pension liabilities at 126 state and municipal pension plans would jump by roughly $600 billion, or about 18%. The estimate is based on 2010 financial data and doesn’t reflect the stock market’s recent rebound or moves by many U.S. states to rein in pension costs.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, City Government, Economy, Law & Legal Issues, Pensions, Personal Finance, Politics in General, State Government, Taxes, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

Grand Mosque of Marseille gets green light after court case

A French court on Tuesday gave the green light for the construction of a mega mosque in the city of Marseille, following years of delays caused by challenges from residents and local businesses.

The Grand Mosque of Marseille is set to be France’s biggest, with the capacity for 14,000 worshippers during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

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

Univ. of South Carolina's Baseball Team makes it back to the College World Series

South Carolina’s tried-and-true formula proved successful once again Friday night at the College World Series.

This USC team won its way into the championship series against Arizona with its calling cards from the past two seasons: pitching and defense. If it is to capture a third consecutive national championship, USC is certain to do it with its gloves and its arms.

In USC’s 3-2 victory against Arkansas, USC played errorless ball and got a sliding catch from right fielder Adam Matthews with runners on second and third base in the third inning that prevented a big inning for the Razorbacks.

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Posted in Uncategorized

Germany beats Greece 4-2 to reach the Euro 2012 Semifinals

With Chancellor Angela Merkel cheering every step of the way, Germany dominated Greece ”” on the soccer field.

The Germans reached the European Championship semifinals for a record seventh time by beating Greece 4-2 Friday in a match played amid the contentious political backdrop between the countries.

But just as in the real world, where Germany has been a major contributor to economic bailouts for Greece, the three-time champions were in control at the Arena Gdansk. And after the match, Merkel visited the players in the changing room.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Give us, O Lord, a steadfast heart, which no unworthy affection may drag downwards; give us an unconquered heart, which no tribulation can wear out; give us an upright heart, which no unworthy purpose may tempt aside. Bestow upon us also, O Lord our God, understanding to know thee, diligence to seek thee, wisdom to find thee, and a faithfulness that may finally embrace thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Thomas Aquinas (1225”“1274)

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

From the Morning Scripture Readings

A Psalm of the Sons of Korah. A Song. On the holy mount stands the city he founded; the LORD loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwelling places of Jacob. Glorious things are spoken of you, O city of God. Among those who know me I mention Rahab and Babylon; behold, Philistia and Tyre, with Ethiopia–“this one was born there,” they say. And of Zion it shall be said, “This one and that one were born in her”; for the Most High himself will establish her. The LORD records as he registers the peoples, “This one was born there.” Singers and dancers alike say, “All my springs are in you.”

-Psalm 87

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(WSJ Marketbeat Blog) Cheaper Gas Won’t Save the World

Crude’s down 28% since its February high. Corn’s down about 17%. Gold’s down 12%.

This slide in commodities, though, is a reaction to slowing economies, which makes for a curious leap of logic when one tries to argue that falling commodity prices will help boost those same economies.

“It makes little sense to expect a fall in the oil price to kick-start global growth if it is weak demand which pushed prices down in the first place,” Capital Economics economist Andrew Kenningham wrote. While cheaper gas prices do act as a transfer of income from oil producers ”“ think Exxon, Chevron, ConocoPhillips ”“ to consumers, it’s likely to have only a small effect on global GDP, “depending on the propensities to spend and save among producers and consumers.”

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Energy, Natural Resources, Personal Finance, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

Thomas Hibbs: The Apocalypse Is Nigh””So Laugh It Up?

The recent religious comedies of the Carrel/Carrey ilk aren’t hostile to religion, per se. Nor do they question the existence of the divine or suggest that believers are suckers.

But they do deliver a vastly diminished deity. The God portrayed by Morgan Freeman in “Bruce Almighty” is not an awe-inspiring lawgiver and judge but a warm, if occasionally demanding, friend of the people. God tells Bruce that the problem with human beings is that they keep looking up to God for help rather than looking to one another.

Maybe these literal representations of man’s interactions with God aren’t the most interesting divine comedies being made today.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Eschatology, Movies & Television, Religion & Culture, Theology