Daily Archives: September 15, 2012

At Zambia's Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Celebrating a Golden Jubilee of Oneness

The ecumenical carnival to toast the golden jubilee of the Anglican Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Lusaka is barely few days away.

The carnival is scheduled for September 16, would be convened to commemorate 50 years of the existence of the Cathedral since it was built in 1962 on what has become known as the Cathedral Hill over-looking the city of Lusaka.

Anglican Cathedral of the Holy Cross dean Charley Thomas and Priest Warden Nicholas Nyendwa are optimistic of a successful carnival to be held under the theme – Jesus is the way, the truth and the life – an adaptation from the New Testament book of John 14:6 in the Bible.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Provinces, Church of Central Africa, Ecumenical Relations, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Zambia

TV Recommendation–(Rick Rescorla) The Man Who Predicted 9/11 by the History Channel

I finally got to watch this production during the past week after knowing peripherally about the story. Wow–incredibly powerful. And, as usual, there was so much I did not know–KSH. Here is the blurb about it to whet your appetite:

See how one man’s conviction and determination helped save 3,000 lives on 9/11.

In 2001, Rick Rescorla was the 62-year-old head of security at the Morgan Stanley Bank. The bank’s offices were situated high up in the South Tower at the World Trade Center. Rescorla was convinced that Osama Bin Laden would use jet planes to try and destroy the World Trade Center.

Long before September 11th, he developed an evacuation plan for the bank. The plan and its preparation were hugely unpopular with the Morgan Stanley staff, many of whom thought Rescorla was mad. Ultimately, however, the plan saved 3,000 lives. It was put into effect after the first jet hit the North Tower–even though WTC managers were instructing everyone to stay in the buildings. When the second jet hit the South Tower, Rescorla averted panic and organized a rapid evacuation. Rescorla went back inside to help the injured and trapped get out. He was still inside when the building collapsed and his body was never found.

Posted in * By Kendall, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Movies & Television, Terrorism

Anglican congregation reopens door in West Endicott, New York

In November 2007, St. Andrew’s vestry relinquished the keys to its church and community center on Mirador Drive after withdrawing from the Episcopal denomination.

The decision ”” which [Tony] Seel called galvanizing in terms of what congregants believed ”” drew national attention in a denominational dispute over the consecration of a homosexual bishop in New Hampshire.

Seel said the opening worship service will mark a new chapter in the congregational life.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central New York, TEC Departing Parishes

Former Stained Glass Designer Installed in new Anglican Ministry in Louisiana

The Rev. Mark A. Bleakley, vicar of All Saints, will lead both the Holy Eucharist Services and the Christian Training. Bleakley currently lives in Vicksburg.

Bleakley graduated from Bob Jones University in 1995 and earned a Masters of Divinity in 2004 from Cranmer Theological House in Houston. He was ordained deacon at Holy Trinity Reformed Episcopal Church by Bishop Daniel Morse of the Reformed Episcopal Diocese of Mid-America and moved to Philadelphia, Pa., where he served as youth director at St. Mark’s Reformed Episcopal parish for a year. In 2005, he was licensed by Bishop Duncan to serve as a deacon at Grace Episcopal Church, Mt. Washington, Pa., where he served for two and half years.

On the Feast of the Holy Cross, Sept. 14, 2007, Bishop David Hicks of the Diocese of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic ordained him to the sacred priesthood at Grace Episcopal Church under the blessing of Bishop Duncan.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Fort Worth

Saint Mark's Episcopal Church, Moscow, Idaho to use 1662 Prayer Book Tomorrow

“The Episcopal Church’s roots are deeply embedded in the Church of England,” said the Rev. Robin Biffle, rector of St. Mark’s. English settlers in North America used the 1662 Prayer Book before independence. “It is an interesting living artifact, too, because it’s still regularly used in England,” she said. “Anglican Churches from Aotearoa to Zimbabwe use books descended from this one.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Book of Common Prayer, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry

In New Zealand, Anglicans confront change

Anglican leaders from throughout Otago and Southland are in Dunedin,,,discussing a draft plan which will result in major changes for congregations.

The plan proposes reducing the number of parishes in the two regions from 32 to 15, congregations and parishes sharing paid vicars, more pooling of resources, more co-operation with other denominations, and cutting the number of paid vicars from 20 full-time equivalents to about 17, Anglican Diocese of Dunedin Bishop the Rt Rev Dr Kelvin Wright said yesterday.

Some church buildings would also close, although how many and where would not be known until the diocese completed earthquake strengthening inspections, he said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, Anglican Provinces, Parish Ministry, Stewardship

(The Billfold) How a landscape architecture graduate ended up running Iraq's elections

Ten years ago, I was nearly 30 and over $90,000 in debt. I had spent my twenties trying to build an interesting life; I had two degrees; I had lived in New York and the Bay Area; I had worked in a series of interesting jobs; I spent a lot of time traveling overseas. But I had also made a couple of critically stupid and shortsighted decisions. I had invested tens of thousands of dollars in a master’s degree in landscape architecture that I realized I didn’t want halfway through. While maxing out my student loans, I had also collected a toxic mix of maxed-out credit cards, personal loans, and $2,000 I had borrowed from my father for a crisis long since forgotten. My life consisted of loan deferments and minimum payments.

Like so many other lost children, I had fallen into a career in IT. The work was boring, but led to jobs with cool organizations””a lot of jobs, because I kept quitting them. As soon as I had any money in the bank, I’d quit and go backpacking in Southeast Asia. My adventures were life-changing experiences, but I was eventually left with a CV that was pretty scattershot.

My luck securing interesting jobs dried up. In 2001, I ended up living with my dad for four months and working at a banking infrastructure company in suburban Pittsburgh. I should have taken that as a warning that I needed to get it together, but I thought it was just an aberration. It was not.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Croatia, Economy, Education, Europe, Iraq, Middle East, Personal Finance, Politics in General, Young Adults

(Sci. Am. Blog) Samuel McNerney–Correcting Creativity: The Struggle for Eminence

By the time he put the finishing touches on the Rite of Spring in November of 1912 in the Châtelard Hotel in Clarens, Switzerland, Stravinsky had spent three years studying Russian pagan rituals, Lithuanian folk songs and crafting the dissonant sacre chord, in which an F-flat major combines with an E-flat major with added minor seventh. The rehearsal process wasn’t easy either. Stravinsky fired the German pianist and the orchestra and performers only had a few opportunities to practice at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, where the Rite debuted in May 1913. But the Russian born composer pulled it off, and his composition now stands as a 20th century masterpiece.

Stravinsky is one of seven eminent creators of the 20st century profiled by Harvard professor Howard Gardner in his 1993 book Creating Minds. The others are Pablo Picasso, Sigmund Freud, T.S. Eliot, Martha Graham, Mahatma Gandhi and Albert Einstein. One can debate the list but Gardner’s foremost conclusion is uncontroversial: creative breakthroughs in any domain require strenuous work and a willingness to challenge the establishment.

The psychology of creativity”“both empirical research and popular literature for the lay audience”“misses this. It reduces creativity to warm showers and blue rooms, forgetting that the life of the eminent creator is not soothing; it is a struggle”“a grossly uneven wrestling match with the muses.

Read it all (emphasis mine).

Posted in * Culture-Watch, History, Music, Psychology, Science & Technology

Mrs (Elizabeth) Harmon

Since I get asked about her from time to time, some blog readers may find a little about my wife there.

Posted in * By Kendall, Harmon Family

(BBC) Pope urges religions to root out fundamentalism

“Religious fundamentalism seeks to take power for political ends, at times using violence, over the individual conscience and over religion,” the Pope said.

“All religious leaders in the Middle East [should] endeavour, by their example and their teaching, to do everything possible to uproot this threat, which indiscriminately and fatally affects believers.”

The pontiff’s exhortations were made public as he signed recommendations on how to improve the lives of the Christian minority, making up 40% of Lebanon’s population, and its relations with Islam and Judaism.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Inter-Faith Relations, Lebanon, Middle East, Other Churches, Pope Benedict XVI, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Violence

Saint Cyprian on his Feast Day

Let us therefore, brethren beloved, pray as God our Teacher has taught us. It is a loving and friendly prayer to beseech God with His own word, to come up to His ears in the prayer of Christ. Let the Father acknowledge the words of His Son when we make our prayer, and let Him also who dwells within in our breast Himself dwell in our voice. And since we have Him as an Advocate with the Father for our sins, let us, when as sinners we petition on behalf of our sins, put forward the words of our Advocate. For since He says, that “whatsoever we shall ask of the Father in His name, He will give us,”how much more effectually do we obtain what we ask in Christ’s name, if we ask for it in His own prayer!

But let our speech and petition when we pray be under discipline, observing quietness and modesty. Let us consider that we are standing in God’s sight. We must please the divine eyes both with the habit of body and with the measure of voice. For as it is characteristic of a shameless man to be noisy with his cries, so, on the other hand, it is fitting to the modest man to pray with moderated petitions. Moreover, in His teaching the Lord has bidden us to pray in secret””in hidden and remote places, in our very bed-chambers””which is best suited to faith, that we may know that God is everywhere present, and hears and sees all, and in the plenitude of His majesty penetrates even into hidden and secret places, as it is written, “I am a God at hand, and not a God afar off. If a man shall hide himself in secret places, shall I not then see him? Do not I fill heaven and earth?”And again: “The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.”And when we meet together with the brethren in one place, and celebrate divine sacrifices with God’s priest, we ought to be mindful of modesty and discipline””not to throw abroad our prayers indiscriminately, with unsubdued voices, nor to cast to God with tumultuous wordiness a petition that ought to be commended to God by modesty; for God is the hearer, not of the voice, but of the heart. Nor need He be clamorously reminded, since He sees men’s thoughts, as the Lord proves to us when He says, “Why think ye evil in your hearts?” And in another place: “And all the churches shall know that I am He that searcheth the hearts and reins.”

And this Hannah in the first book of Kings, who was a type of the Church, maintains and observes, in that she prayed to God not with clamorous petition, but silently and modestly, within the very recesses of her heart. She spoke with hidden prayer, but with manifest faith. She spoke not with her voice, but with her heart, because she knew that thus God hears; and she effectually obtained what she sought, because she asked it with belief. Divine Scripture asserts this, when it says, “She spake in her heart, and her lips moved, and her voice was not heard; and God did hear her.”We read also in the Psalms, “Speak in your hearts, and in your beds, and be ye pierced.”The Holy Spirit, moreover, suggests these same things by Jeremiah, and teaches, saying, “But in the heart ought God to be adored by thee.”

–From his Treatise On the Lord’s Prayer

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Church History, Spirituality/Prayer, Tunisia

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Saint Cyprian

Almighty God, who didst give to thy servant Cyprian boldness to confess the Name of our Savior Jesus Christ before the rulers of this world, and courage to die for this faith: Grant that we may always be ready to give a reason for the hope that is in us, and to suffer gladly for the sake of the same our Lord Jesus Christ; 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, Africa, Church History, Spirituality/Prayer, Tunisia

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Look upon our lives, O Lord our God, and make them thine in the power of thy Holy Spirit; that we may walk in thy way, faithfully believing thy Word, and faithfully doing thy commandments; faithfully serving thee, and faithfully serving our neighbour; to the furtherance of thy glorious kingdom, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Diocese of York

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

Then it seemed good to the apostles and the elders, with the whole church, to choose men from among them and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They sent Judas called Barsab’bas, and Silas, leading men among the brethren, with the following letter: “The brethren, both the apostles and the elders, to the brethren who are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cili’cia, greeting. Since we have heard that some persons from us have troubled you with words, unsettling your minds, although we gave them no instructions, it has seemed good to us, having come to one accord, to choose men and send them to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, men who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will tell you the same things by word of mouth. For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled and from unchastity. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.” So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch; and having gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter. And when they read it, they rejoiced at the exhortation. And Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, exhorted the brethren with many words and strengthened them. And after they had spent some time, they were sent off in peace by the brethren to those who had sent them. But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also.

–Acts 15:22-35

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Brad Hirschfield–Religious violence is all too real

It’s hard to think about the Sept. 11 attacks without thinking about the place of religious violence in the world today. But whatever concerns I had Tuesday, were tragically magnified by the murder of J. Christopher Stevens, U.S. Ambassador to Libya, and three of his staff, in Benghazi, Libya.

Even if they had not been murdered though, the question of religious violence would have been on my mind as Sept. 11 approached and was observed.

How could it not be, when the single worst terrorist attack on American soil was done in the name of God? And, as I was reminded in the last few days, I was not the only one thinking about religious violence….

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Religion & Culture, Violence

Episcopal Priest John Liebler "lost his faith in an ironic place, Seminary" but now has it back

The Rev. John Liebler, an Episcopal priest, lost his faith in an ironic place: seminary. Studying for the priesthood in the late 1970s, Liebler was inundated with a theological liberalism that left him believing that Christianity, and all religion, was just a mirror we hold up to our own wishes rather than a window through which we see true spiritual realities. After a few years pastoring, he finally realized his spiritual emptiness.

We asked Liebler, who now leads St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Fort Pierce, Fla., about how he returned to faith, and why he believes orthodox Christians urgently need to reclaim liberalism.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Seminary / Theological Education, Theology