Daily Archives: August 25, 2012

Ordinariate denies favoritism charges

The head of the U.S. branch of the Anglican Ordinariate, Msg. Jeffrey Steenson, has denied accusations it has given preference to former Episcopal clergy in its ordination process. However, among its first class of priests, 16 of 19 are former Episcopal clergy, with only 3 receiving their formation and orders from the continuing church.

Questions and concerns about the implementation and interpretation of Anglicanorum coetibus have met the Vatican’s initiative to create a liturgical home for Anglicans with the Roman Catholic Church. In an interview with PBS’s Religion and Ethics Newsweekly, Dr. Ian Markham, Dean of the Virginia Theological Seminary criticized the pastoral provision for Anglicans for sheep stealing.

“There was a perception that this was poaching by the Roman Catholic Church of Anglicans around the world. It was discourteous, it was stealing sheep, it was unecumenical,” he said, adding “It’s viewed as not recognizing the value of and integrity of our traditions.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Ecclesiology, Ecumenical Relations, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pope Benedict XVI, Roman Catholic, Theology

Seeing and Battling a ”˜Cartel’ in the Hiring of Rabbis

Four years ago, when the longtime rabbi of Beth El Synagogue here retired, a member named Barak D. Richman joined the committee searching for a successor. Everything went smoothly enough until the congregation reached outside Conservative Judaism, its formal affiliation, to consider candidates from the Reform and Reconstructionist branches, and to place a few online advertisements.

Several months into the process, one of Mr. Richman’s colleagues on the search committee delivered some unexpected information. Under the rules of the Conservative movement, Beth El had two choices: either look at Conservative rabbis put forward by the movement’s placement office, and do not so much as whistle at anybody else; or, look outside the movement and be denied access to any of its rabbis.

Being a law professor at Duke University with an expertise in antitrust, Mr. Richman responded in a unique way. He recalled a 1975 Supreme Court case, Goldfarb v. Virginia State Bar, which successfully challenged the controlled market for lawyers doing real estate title searches. And he thought of the word “cartel.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Judaism, Law & Legal Issues, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture

Pakistani Christians, fearing backlash, flee community after girl is accused of blasphemy

Everyone in the teeming, tense community of Muslims and Christians just outside Islamabad seems to have a different story about the young girl and the Koran.

The 12-year-old Christian deliberately burned the Muslim holy book, some say. No, she innocently put pages from a non-sacred teaching text into the trash, say others, and nothing was burned. Still another version holds that an older Muslim boy planted pages of the Koran for the cleaning girl to find and then leveled the accusation of desecration because she had spurned him.

Amid the conflicting claims, this much is certain: As many as 600 Christians have fled their colony bordering the capital, fearing for their lives, officials said, after a mob last week called for the child to be burned to death as a blasphemer.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Asia, Children, Islam, Law & Legal Issues, Muslim-Christian relations, Other Faiths, Pakistan, Politics in General, Religion & Culture

(Guardian) Mark Vernon–Rowan Williams and Francis Spufford on being a Christian

What is it like to be a Christian? Not what do Christians believe or how many superstitions do they quietly excuse before breakfast? But what is faith as experienced?

It is an important question because, as Rowan Williams notes in his new book, The Lion’s World, people might think they know what faith is about when, today, they perhaps don’t, never having been there. Subtitled “A Journey Into the Heart of Narnia”, the book is partly about CS Lewis. But it is also a chance for the archbishop of Canterbury to convey what Christianity means to him. This is difficult to do, not only because contemporary Britons lack Christian experience but because, as titular head of the established Church of England, Williams recognises a need to “rinse out what is stale in our thinking about Christianity ”“ which is almost everything”.

The elusory character of Christianity is also on the mind of Francis Spufford, the historian and science writer. The subtitle for his new book, Unapologetic, is “Why, Despite Everything, Christianity Can Still Make Surprising Emotional Sense”. A central worry for him is not that the rational justification for belief has been undone. Faith is not about that anyway: as Coleridge noted, the best argument for Christianity is that “it fits the human heart”. Rather, it is that so many of the secular alternatives to Christianity only work because they “depend on some tacky fantasy about ourselves”.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, England / UK, Religion & Culture

Unemployment woes hit hard for displaced workers, Labor Dept. study shows

Many workers are nervous about their livelihoods despite the economic recovery ”” and for good reason, it turns out.

Among those workers who lost a good job because of the struggling economy over the past three years, roughly one in four found a job that pays as well, according to data released Friday by the Labor Department.

The others remained unemployed, stopped looking for work or accepted jobs at lower wages.

“This data is telling a story of unemployment inflicting long-term damage for a lot of people,” said Michael Mandel, an economist at the Progressive Policy Institute, a centrist think tank. “This won’t turn around until wages overall start rising ”” and so far, we haven’t seen any strong signs of that.”

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Consumer/consumer spending, Economy, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

A profile of John Herring, new rector of Saint Peter's in Rome, Georgia

[John] Herring said it wasn’t necessarily a huge leap, going from working with youth and street ministry to becoming rector at St. Peter’s. “The gospel doesn’t change,” he said, “but ultimately ”” whether you’re dealing with homeless, or you’re dealing with youth or you’re dealing with young adults or you’re dealing with parents ”” ultimately, you’re dealing with people who have a story and who are struggling to be faithful and who want to learn. That doesn’t ever change.”

When asked if he had a personal philosophy, Herring’s eyes lit up with a warm recollection.

“I read a book when I was in junior high school,” he said. “An autobiography by Gale Sayers, who was a running back for the Chicago Bears. He said that God is first, my family is second and I am third. That’s something that’s always stuck with me. It’s ultimately not about me, it’s about God. Whatever I can do to help people on their way, that’s where the satisfaction comes from.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Parishes

South Carolina Pension fund misses the mark on returns

South Carolina’s pension fund investments have generated far less over the past year than hoped, but officials say there’s no cause for alarm.

Preliminary numbers from the state’s Retirement System Investment Commission show a return on investments of 0.6 percent for the fiscal year ending June 30. The state assumes a 7.5 percent annual return when calculating what it needs to keep the system solvent long-term.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Aging / the Elderly, Credit Markets, Economy, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Pensions, Personal Finance, Politics in General, State Government, Stock Market, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

Aisha Sultan–Making a contract for safe online behavior

Just as you would teach a preschooler how to cross the street and a teen how to drive, children need guidance in navigating online safely and responsibly. Creating a family contract that defines the expectations and rules of online and technology use is a one place to start. We examined models of contracts that can be amended to suit a family….

Read it all, noting especially #10 in the first list.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Science & Technology, Theology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Louis of France

O God, who didst call thy servant Louis of France to an earthly throne that he might advance thy heavenly kingdom, and didst give him zeal for thy Church and love for thy people: Mercifully grant that we who commemorate him this day may be fruitful in good works, and attain to the glorious crown of thy saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * International News & Commentary, Church History, Europe, France, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O Gracious God, whose blessed Son set forth thy love towards mankind, in his miracles of healing and mercy, making both the deaf to hear and the dumb to speak: Grant that our ears may be opened to thy Word, and our tongues loosed to proclaim it to others, and to further the spreading of thy gospel among all nations; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Euchologium Anglicanum

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

Now there was a disciple at Damascus named Anani’as. The Lord said to him in a vision, “Anani’as.” And he said, “Here I am, Lord.” And the Lord said to him, “Rise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for a man of Tarsus named Saul; for behold, he is praying, and he has seen a man named Anani’as come in and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight.” But Anani’as answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to thy saints at Jerusalem; and here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call upon thy name.” But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel; for I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.” So Anani’as departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came, has sent me that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized, and took food and was strengthened. For several days he was with the disciples at Damascus.

–Acts 9:10-19

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Beth Moore Begins Tonight at the North Charleston Coliseum

Many of us would be grateful for your prayers for this event here–read the details there.

Posted in * South Carolina, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Episcopal Bishop Champions Gay Marriage: Publishers Weekly Talks with Gene Robinson

Christians who oppose gay marriage are sometimes described as “haters.” Is that characterization fair?

No. I’m concerned about the escalating violent language and overstatement. We can’t have a civil discussion about much of anything. I do not believe that everyone who opposes gay marriage hates gay people. There are many principled faithful people who oppose it based on what they have been taught to believe and do believe. We do not move forward by asserting that the other side is hating us.

Read it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to at KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Books, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, TEC Bishops, Theology, Theology: Scripture

***Where to Find the Three Diocese of South Carolina Posts that for a Good While remained at the Top

Bishop Lawrence Meets with Clergy of the Diocese of South Carolina Following General Convention may be found here.

Bishop Mark Lawrence’s Letter to the Diocese of S.C. to be read in all parishes Sunday morning may be found there.

South Carolina Differentiates Itself from Actions of 77th General Convention may be found at this spot.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, TEC Bishops