Daily Archives: January 31, 2013

Stephen Stacey–Sadly, in Redefining Marriage, the UK Mandates Social Decline Into Law

Though same-sex activists would like the debate about the redefining of marriage to be about equal rights for adults, it is not. There are three different parties to the discussion, not just two.

The core of the discussion about redefining marriage is primarily about whether society needs a social space where the child’s natural right and desire to be raised by its two, biological parents is upheld.

Any sensible debate has to admit that children have rights too. They are naturally born wanting to be loved by the two opposite-sex people who gave them life. Also, children, on average, have the best start in life when raised by their two, biological parents. No amount of social engineering can change this.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Children, England / UK, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Sexuality

Seychelles: Province Appeals for Communion Help After Seychelles Storms

Members of the Anglican Communion have been asked to provide prayer and financial support for the Diocese of Seychelles which has been badly hit by flooding due to recent extreme weather.

The Primate and Bishop of Mauritius, Archbishop Ian Ernest, has written to supporters to raise awareness of the crisis–which appears to have been largely ignored by global media–and to ask for assistance.

“Following the natural calamity which has hit the Seychelles in the past days, I am sad to inform you that the country and the diocese have suffered heavy losses from the floods,” he wrote. “Church buildings and other important structures have been destroyed. However we give thanks to the Lord as there has been no loss of life.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * General Interest, Anglican Province of the Indian Ocean, Anglican Provinces, Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.

(ACLJ) Free Saeed Abedini: Time for a Unified National and International Response

Our government is coalescing around Pastor Saeed, but it is still moving too slow and engaging at too low a level. Two weeks ago 49 Members of Congress (37 from the House and 12 Senators) sent letters to the State Department urging “strong and sustained” advocacy on Saeed’s behalf. On Friday we reported that the State Department and White House made near-identical comments within moments of each other that clearly and unequivocally called for Pastor Saeed’s release.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Church/State Matters, Foreign Relations, Globalization, Iran, Law & Legal Issues, Middle East, Politics in General, Religion & Culture

(BBC) Russia concern at Israeli 'air strike' on Syria

Russia has expressed concern at an alleged Israeli attack on Syria, saying such a strike would be an unacceptable violation of the UN Charter.

Syria’s army said Israeli jets had targeted a military research centre north-west of Damascus on Wednesday.

It denied reports that lorries carrying weapons bound for Lebanon were hit.

Russia has steadfastly refused to denounce Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during the 22-month conflict that has killed more than 60,000 people.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Defense, National Security, Military, Europe, Foreign Relations, Israel, Middle East, Politics in General, Russia, Syria

(CEN) Richard Dawkins and Rowan Williams prepare for round 2

Rowan Williams and Richard Dawkins are to go head to head again in debate. Last year the two debated religion and science in Oxford’s Sheldonian Theatre, now they are to debate the place of reli- gion in the modern world at the Cambridge Union.

About 1,000 students are expect- ed to attend a debate in which Tariq Ramadan, Andrew Copson of the British Humanist Association, and Douglas Murray, founder of the Centre for Social Cohesion, will also take part.

The debate will be filmed and be available on the Union website soon after it has taken place.

Read it all (may require subscription).

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

Television Recommendation–Call The Midwife

Elizabeth and I finally got to this and it was simply lovely in every sense. Touching, moving, well acted and produced–it has all the hallmarks of a true story, based as it is on the diaries of one who worked as a midwife as it is–KSH.

Posted in * By Kendall, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, England / UK, Health & Medicine, History, Movies & Television, Women

Israeli Secularists Appear to Find Their Voice

Speaking to a group of ultra-Orthodox men shortly before he officially entered politics, Yair Lapid, a proudly secular talk-show host, declared that in a century-long competition to define Israel’s character, “we lost and you won.”

“Not only in terms of numbers,” Mr. Lapid said in late 2011 at a college for religious students, but also in politics “and as a consumer force and in the streets and in the culture and in the educational system ”” you won in all these places.”

Now, Mr. Lapid’s stunning success in last week’s election, in which his new Yesh Atid became Israel’s second largest party, is being viewed by many voters, activists and analysts here as a victory for the secular mainstream in the intensifying identity battle gripping the country.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, History, Israel, Judaism, Middle East, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Religion & Culture

(WSJ) The U.S. Recovery Shows a Soft Spot as 4th Quarter 2012 GDP comes in Negative

The U.S. economy shrank for the first time in more than three years in the fourth quarter, underscoring the halting nature of the recovery. But the strength of consumer spending and business investment suggested that the economy will grow, albeit slowly, this year.

Gross domestic product””the broadest measure of goods and services churned out by the economy””fell at a 0.1% annual rate in the fourth quarter of 2012, according to the government’s initial estimate out Wednesday.

The details weren’t as discouraging as the headline. The drop, a surprise, was driven by a sharp fall in government spending and by businesses putting fewer goods on warehouse shelves, as well as by a decline in exports. The mainstays of the domestic private economy””housing, consumer spending and business investment in equipment and software””were stronger.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Budget, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, The U.S. Government

Justin and Caroline Welby at the Trent Vineyard, an interview hosted by John Mumford

Watch and listen to it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

([London] Times) Justin Welby: my application for Canterbury was a joke

The new Archbishop of Canterbury has revealed that he regarded his application for the job as a “joke”. He described how he was ordered by the Church of England to apply after just seven months as Bishop of Durham even though he thought it ridiculous.

Speaking in an interview at Trent Vineyard, an evangelical church near Nottingham, Justin Welby said that he had been “told”, as one of the top five diocesan bishops, to apply. But he did not take the prospect seriously.

Read it all (requires subscription).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

(Zenit) Daniel Vázquez–Is the Pope Too Exposed on Twitter?

The arrival of the Pope on Twitter has generated all types of reactions. The fact that the Pope has become a user of the second largest social network on the Internet has become the subject of much discussion. Everyone has an opinion about what this development means. Some interpret it as a desire to become more “modern,” to bring the Vatican “up to date,” and in doing so, improve the Pope’s image and, by extension, that of the Church. This is an easy interpretation, albeit rather superficial, and one that is quite far from grasping the depth and scope of this initiative.

Several of the messages that the Holy Father has delivered for the most recent World Communications Days have provided the keys for more substantial interpretation. In these one can see how the Church has admirably understood that fact that the Internet is not only an instrument for communication, but rather, it is above all an area, a place where people meet and develop relationships.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Social Networking, Anthropology, Blogging & the Internet, Globalization, Other Churches, Pope Benedict XVI, Roman Catholic, Science & Technology, Theology

A Prayer for the [Provisional] Feast Day of Samuel Shoemaker

Holy God, we offer thanks for the vision of Samuel Shoemaker, priest and co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous; and we pray that we may follow his example to help others find salvation through knowledge and love of Jesus Christ our Savior; who with thee and the Holy Spirit livest and reignest, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Posted in Uncategorized

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Preserve us, O Lord, from the spirit of revenge. Give us, we beseech thee, the generous heart; that, if our enemy hunger, we may feed him, if he thirst, may give him drink; that we be not overcome with evil, but overcome evil with good; as servants of Jesus Christ our Lord.

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

Thus Abraham “believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.” So you see that it is men of faith who are the sons of Abraham. And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” So then, those who are men of faith are blessed with Abraham who had faith.

–Galatians 3:6-9

Posted in Uncategorized

From the Do Not Try this at Home Dept.–Garrett McNamara 'surfs record 100ft wave' in Portugal

Watch it all.

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

David Cameron in Algeria: PM urges terrorism fight with 'everything at our disposal'

Prime Minister David Cameron has said the international community should use “everything at its disposal” to fight terrorism, on a visit to Algeria.

The recent hostage crisis, in which some 37 foreigners died, was “a reminder that what happens in other countries affects us at home”, he said.

He also defended Western intervention in the conflict in neighbouring Mali.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Algeria, Defense, National Security, Military, England / UK, Foreign Relations, Politics in General, Terrorism, Violence

(ACNS) "Urgent action will prevent more flood suffering" – Mozambique bishop

A bishop in flood-hit Mozambique has warned of greater suffering if the flooding disaster that has displaced around 70,000 people is not properly addressed.

Bishop of Lebombo Diocese in southern Mozambique, the Rt Revd Dinis Salomão Sengulane said in a recent statement sent to supporters, “The situation is dramatic and it calls for our response if we are to avoid more damages to the lives of people”.

The bishop’s plea comes after devastating floods hit Mozambique following severe rains in southern Africa during the past two weeks.

The United Nations reports that at least 36 people have died and nearly 70,000 have been displaced because of flooding in the country.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Mozambique, Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.

Leaders of R. Catholic and Episcopal churches in central Pennsylvania differ on same sex marriage

The heads of the Catholic and Episcopal churches in south central Pennsylvania on Wednesday struck contrasting reactions to findings of a poll that shows voters would be in favor of approving gay marriage legislation.

The Rev. Joseph McFadden, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg, decried the narrow favoring for gay marriage, while the Rev. Nathan Baxter, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Central Pennsylvania welcomed it as good news.

The Quinnipiac University poll found that Pennsylvanians narrowly favor gay marriage — 47 percent of voters indicating they would approve gay marriage, and 43 percent opposing it. The poll found greater disparities along religious lines.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Other Churches, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Sexuality, State Government, TEC Bishops, Theology