Daily Archives: December 14, 2013

(World Mag.) Jamie Dean on many departing parishes departing TEC–Tidings of discomfort and joy

A scorched earth policy. That’s how Anglicans who have left The Episcopal Church (TEC) and its endorsement of unbiblical beliefs and actions often describe TEC’s response. From depressed Binghamton, N.Y., to affluent Newport Beach, Calif., TEC leaders have fought dozens of court battles to force congregations leaving the denomination to forfeit the buildings they, their parents, and their grandparents paid for.

[This policy]… is evident…at St. James Anglican Church, which for more than half a century owned property in Newport Beach: The 300-member congregation now meets in a fluorescent-lit room with exposed pipes and concrete walls. It’s a humble setting for an affluent congregation accustomed to soft lighting and stained glass, but a fitting one this month for celebrating the birth of a Savior in a barnyard stable””and that’s one of the providential results of the scorched earth policy.

St. James lost its building even though the church had a written agreement with its diocese that seemed to ensure the congregation’s ownership of the building””but when it was time to part, the diocese and TEC sued the congregation, and a judge cited an Episcopal Church canon declaring that all church property belongs to the diocese and the denomination.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Central Florida, TEC Conflicts: Los Angeles, TEC Departing Parishes, Theology

Food For Thought from J.B. Phillips–We Need to Be on guard agnst Squeezing Jesus into our own Mold

It is by no means easy to make an accurate summary of that character and truth revealed by Jesus Christ, even if we do not omit those parts of the records which we personally think distasteful or discordant. In this “Christian” country, we nearly all have some pre-conceived, even though vague, idea of the Christ-character, and we need to be on our guard against “reading back” into His deeds and words what is already in our minds about Him. Men have tamed and modified and “explained” so much of His message that a great deal of its edge has been blunted. Nor does our reverence for the superb literary quality of the familiar Authorized Version do anything but hinder. Truth that should be regarded as FACT comes to be regarded as “a beautiful thought”: at best it is “a religious truth” rather than a reliable and workable fact on which to act and build. A “fact” of psychological research or of medical science for example is accepted by the mind as being more “true” than a statement of Christ. Yet if Christ was God, it should be the other way round. It may help, therefore, to re-state the basic principles of Jesus Christ in somewhat unfamiliar form.

The truth taught by Jesus Christ is the right way to live. It is not primarily a religion, not even the best religion, but God Himself explaining in terms that men can readily grasp how life is meant to be lived.

–J.B. Phillips,Your God is Too Small (New York: Macmillan, 1961) [emphasis mine]

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Books, Christology, Church History, Theology

Life in the Social Media/Information Age–The Agony of Instagram Envy

A third [friend of Erin Wurzel]…posted her holiday table setting in Paris, complete with burning candles, rolled napkins with napkin rings, an open Champagne bottle, a huge centerpiece of fall flowers and the illuminated Eiffel Tower framed in a casement window.

“I let out an ”˜Oh, my God!,’ like a little kid who wants something they cannot have,” said Ms. Wurzel, a program analyst in Philadelphia who uses the Instagram handle likewantneed. “You’re searching through your feed and a picture will hit you, like that Paris shot. It’s just so perfect. You just think, ”˜I want that, I want that life.’ ”

It’s called Instagram envy, and Ms. Wurzel had it bad.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * General Interest, --Social Networking, Blogging & the Internet, Consumer/consumer spending, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Photos/Photography, Psychology, Science & Technology, Theology, Young Adults

A 2004 revisit–Robert George+Wm. Saunders on the Battles of the 19th century and their echoes today

By the mid-1850s, polygamy, which had originally been the largely secret practice of the Mormon elite, had come out of the closet. Polygamists claimed that attacks on “plural marriage” were violations of their right to religious freedom. Later, some would bring lawsuits asking judges to invalidate laws against polygamy as unconstitutional. One of these cases would make it all the way to the Supreme Court. Apologists for polygamy denied that plural marriage was harmful to children, and challenged supporters of the ban on polygamy to prove that the existence of polygamous families in American society harmed their own monogamous marriages. They insisted that they merely wanted the right to be married in their own way and left alone.

But the Republicans stood their ground, refusing to be intimidated by the invective being hurled against them. They knew that polygamy and slavery were morally wrong and socially corrosive. And they were prepared to act on their moral convictions.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Church History, History, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Politics in General, Race/Race Relations, Religion & Culture

Wow! Manchester City Thrash Arsenal at home 6-3

Manchester City emphatically showed their Premier League title credentials as they consigned leaders Arsenal to a high-scoring defeat in a pulsating encounter.

City made a storming start and quickly claimed the lead; a wall of pressure told as another corner was delivered by Samir Nasri. At the near post Martin Demichelis flicked on with a header and there was Sergio Aguero to acrobatically steer his right-foot volley into the net. City made their early dominance count.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, England / UK, Sports

(Globe and Mail) Gary Mason–California’s troubles are on every corner

The department of finance has said California’s debt was paid down to less than $28-billion (U.S.). But that doesn’t include government employee pension and health benefits that have been promised but not funded. Stanford University estimates that unfunded pension liabilities are as much as $497-billion.

Meantime, a report by the Pew Center suggests that unfunded state retiree liabilities are $77-billion and growing. Most agree that until California deals with these two areas, it will only be pecking away at its monstrous fiscal challenges. It’s difficult to imagine state legislators not having to deliver some extremely unpleasant news to tens of thousands of government employees in the coming years.

Despite its financial woes, California continues to talk about a high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco that would cost tens of billions. On another front, the state ruled against allowing fracking for oil and gas despite having the largest shale deposits in the country. Many believe this one move alone could have helped release California from the grips of financial despair.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Pensions, Personal Finance, Politics in General, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

Trinity Anglican Church moves into new home In Mississippi

While the church held its first Sunday service on Dec. 1, dedication and consecration ceremonies were held last weekend. Anglican Bishop Frank Lyons came from Pittsburgh, Pa., to take part in the ceremony attended by 72 people.

Both Schreffler and Lamon said it is hoped the church will become an integral part of the northwest Marysville neighborhood.

“The community here has really welcomed us,” Schreffler said. “And we want to be part of the neighborhood.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Parish Ministry

Anglican priest ordained to Roman Catholic priesthood in Savannah

In a first for the Catholic Diocese of Savannah, Bishop Gregory J. Hartmayer ordained an Anglican priest to the Catholic priesthood Wednesday.

The Rev. Lucien Lindsey was ordained a Catholic priest at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Savannah and incardinated in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter.

The Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter is a structure, similar to a diocese, that was created by the Vatican in 2012 for former Anglican communities and clergy seeking to become Catholic.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic

Church of North India General Secretary Alwan Masih and other leaders Arrested

The Delhi police…[Wednesday] cane-charged and water cannoned Archbishop Anil Couto of Delhi, several other bishops, nuns, pastors as they led a rally in Parliament Street demanding to end the discrimination against dalit Christians.

Several priests and nuns and lay leaders were injured badly in the police action. Christian leaders then courted arrest and were taken to parliament street police station as they mached on defying police orders.

This is the first time after in1997, that Bishops and Church leaders have been arrested while protesting for dalit cause.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Asia, Ethics / Moral Theology, India, Inter-Faith Relations, Law & Legal Issues, Police/Fire, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Theology, Violence

A Prayer for the Feast Day of John of the Cross

Judge eternal, throned in splendor, who gavest Juan de la Cruz strength of purpose and mystical faith that sustained him even through the dark night of the soul: Shed thy light on all who love thee, in unity with Jesus Christ our Savior; who with thee and the Holy Spirit livest and reignest, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O thou, who hast foretold that thou wilt return to judgment in an hour that we are not aware of, grant us grace to watch and pray always, that whether thou shalt come at even, or at midnight, or in the morning, we may be found among the number of those servants who shall be blessed in watching for their Lord, to whom be all glory now and for evermore.

–The Non-Jurors’ Prayer Book

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Advent, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Scripture Readings

And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: ‘The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. “‘I know your works; you have the name of being alive, and you are dead. Awake, and strengthen what remains and is on the point of death, for I have not found your works perfect in the sight of my God. Remember then what you received and heard; keep that, and repent. If you will not awake, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come upon you. Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white, for they are worthy. He who conquers shall be clad thus in white garments, and I will not blot his name out of the book of life; I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. 6 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

–Revelation 3:1-6

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Keep Things in Perspective Department: Paul Klaver–Winter

Winter from Paul Klaver on Vimeo.

Watch it all–and enjoy the wonderfully soothing music also.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, Music, Weather

Communique from the Anglican Communion's UFO [ Unity, Faith and Order] Commission

Meeting in the context of daily prayer and the Eucharist, we have valued the shaping of our discussions by our Bible studies on the Epistle to the Ephesians. We have been emboldened by Christ’s breaking down of the dividing wall (2.14) and the Church’s calling to make known ”˜the wisdom of God in its rich variety’ (3.10). We have been challenged to steadfastness and maturity and to pursuing our calling to build up the body of Christ in love (4.14”“16).

To this end we commend engagement with the World Council of Churches’ (WCC) Faith and Order Paper The Church: Towards a Common Vision. The fruit of twenty years of consultation among Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican, Evangelical, Pentecostal and Roman Catholic churches, it offers a high degree of common understanding of the theology of the Church. We welcome this publication overseen by the Revd Canon Dr John Gibaut, Director of Faith and Order for the WCC and himself a member of IASCUFO, and believe it offers a rich resource for the understanding of our common mission as Christians.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, - Anglican: Primary Source, -- Reports & Communiques, Ecumenical Relations

A Terrific Top Down Photo of NYC in 1942 from a first time visiting Coast Guardsman from Iowa

May 11, 1942: Five months into World War II, a young Coast Guardsman from Iowa was shown in a photo feature exhibiting the “typical actions and reactions of the thousands of service men from small towns who, since the war began, have made their maiden journey to the ”˜big city.’”

Check it out.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, History, Military / Armed Forces, Urban/City Life and Issues, Young Adults