Daily Archives: June 17, 2014

(LA Times) Cross training: Christians embrace Daniel Plan's mind-body-spirit diet

Despite a multibillion-dollar industry of programs and books and diet meals and meetings, the secular world has done a fairly lousy job at getting people to lose weight and get fit.

So why not turn to a higher power?

One Sunday afternoon, 3,000 people came to a rally at Saddleback to hear about the Daniel Plan from [Rick] Warren and others, including two of its creators, Daniel Amen, a psychiatrist who belongs to Saddleback, and Dr. Mark Hyman, who has taken care of Bill and Hillary Clinton.

“If Jesus came to dinner, what would you feed him?” Hyman asked the crowd. “Would you give him a Big Mac, fries and a Coke? Would you feed him all the junk that we feed ourselves and our guests when they come to dinner? Or would you eat real food?”

Read it all.

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

(Local Paper) Iraq veteran with PTSD finds healing in exercise

Dr. Yevgeniy Gelfand, a psychiatrist at Trident, knows Urena from working with him in the ER and says a growing body of evidence is showing that exercise can be a valuable tool in battling PTSD, which he describes as “complex disorder” that researchers are still learning about.

Gelfand says drugs often have been the first and foremost treatment for it and have generally proven not to work too well.

“In the West, everyone wants a pill. That’s how we’re conditioned,” says Gelfand. “I think exercise is often overlooked (as a therapy).”

Besides endorphins, Gelfand says exercise provides a “sense of well-being” through improved sleep, providing a sense of control, and giving people goals and a sense of accomplishment.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anthropology, Health & Medicine, Iraq War, Psychology, Sports, Theology

(NYT) Islamic Militants Fast Strike in Iraq Was Years in the Making

The Sunni extremist group, while renowned for the mayhem it has inflicted, has set clear goals for carving out and governing a caliphate, an Islamic religious state, that spans Sunni-dominated sections of Iraq and Syria. It has published voluminously, even issuing annual reports, to document its progress in achieving its goals.

Under the leadership of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who spent time in an American detention facility, the group has shown itself to be unrelentingly violent and purist in pursuing its religious objectives, but coldly pragmatic in forming alliances and gaining and ceding territory. In discussing its strategy, Mr. Fishman has described the group as “a governmental amoeba, constantly shifting its zone of control across Iraq’s western expanses” as its forces redeploy.

In 2007 the group published a pamphlet laying out its vision for Iraq. It cited trends in globalization as well as the Quran in challenging modern notions of statehood as having absolute control over territory. Mr. Fishman referred to the document as the “Federalist Papers” for what is now ISIS.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Defense, National Security, Military, Ethics / Moral Theology, Iraq, Islam, Middle East, Other Faiths, Terrorism, Theology, Violence

ESPN Video tribute–Tony Gwynn's Lasting Legacy

Watch it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Death / Burial / Funerals, Health & Medicine, History, Parish Ministry, Sports

(The State) South Carolina leads the nation in tire manufacturing and exports

South Carolina is on one heck of a roll when it comes to tires.

The Palmetto State in the fourth quarter of 2013 elbowed aside Oklahoma as the nation’s leading tire producer, churning out 89,000 a day compared to the Sooner State’s 88,000 a day, according to estimates by Tire Business magazine.

It is also expanding its lead as the export king ”“ last year shipping 30 percent of the nation’s overseas market, three times as many tires as its nearest competitor, Ohio.

“South Carolina is No. 1,” Dave Zielasko, the magazine’s publisher and editor-in-chief, said. “And its not surprising. South Carolina has really been aggressive in attracting these factories.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * South Carolina, America/U.S.A., Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Globalization

(Haaretz) Poem of the Week –The secret lives of squirrels by Humbert Wolfe

“The Grey Squirrel” is remarkable both for the visual simile comparing the coffeepot and the invasive grey rodent that Victorian animal lovers brought from North America to Britain, where it is still causing devastation to the native red species; and for the poem’s wry take on moral notions regarding the appropriate treatment of animals.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Ethics / Moral Theology, Poetry & Literature, Theology

(BBC) Kenya attacks: 'Women abducted' near Mpeketoni

At least 12 women were abducted during the latest attack by suspected Islamists on Kenya’s coast, residents have told the BBC.

Fifteen people were killed in the overnight raid on two villages near the town of Mpeketoni, local police say.

Somalia’s al-Shabab group said it had carried out the attack but the government is still blaming bandits.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Defense, National Security, Military, Ethics / Moral Theology, Kenya, Law & Legal Issues, Police/Fire, Politics in General, Theology, Violence

Archbishop Justin Welby's address to parliamentary prayer breakfast

“The Church, though, is a suffering church in this century. It is growing and in growing it suffers. It carries a cross. That is as true today as ever, and the last few years have demonstrated the truth and cost of that reality. A couple of weeks ago, Caroline and I were in Lahore in Pakistan. Just incidentally. . . just remember in your prayers our diplomatic service around the world. We’ve seen a lot of them in the last year; they are unbelievably good and they get absolutely no credit, anywhere, for the extraordinary work they do [applause]. . . But in Lahore two weeks ago we met some of the clergy and the Bishop of Peshawar who were involved in the bomb explosion last September at All Saints Church, an Anglican church, in which over 200 people were killed. And you ask them: “How are things recovering? Are people still going to church?” “Oh,” they said. “The congregation has tripled.” It is a suffering church and a church of courage.

“In the routine list of dioceses around the world that we pray for, last week was Damaturu, which almost none of you probably would have heard of, in north-east Nigeria. I know the bishop there; that the people of that diocese have been scattered to the four winds by Boko Haram. Its bishop is in hiding and danger is all around for those few Christians who remain. The girls of Chibok kidnapped and still held were from a part of that region, which is a Christian part. The global Church is a profoundly suffering church.

“It is cross-shaped. It carries a cross of suffering, but also it carries a cross for the salvation of the world. That has always been a scandal since the first few centuries. Early doubters, attackers of the Christian Church said: “How can you worship someone who died on a cross?” But it is a scandal of which we should be proud. We boast in the cross of Christ.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of Nigeria, England / UK, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Spirituality/Prayer

(RNS) Got religion on campus? Leave it off your resume

Recent college grads, take note: Mentioning a campus religion group on your resume ”” particularly a Muslim club ”” may lead to significantly fewer job opportunities.

Two new sociology studies find new graduates who included a religious mention on a resume were much less likely to hear back from potential employers.

The studies used fictitious resumes ”” with bland names that signaled no particular race or ethnicity. These were sent to employers who posted on the CareerBuilder website to fill entry-level job openings in sales, information technology and other fields suitable for first jobs out of college.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Education, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Religion & Culture

St Mary-le-Bow celebrates 50th anniversary of re-consecration after the Blitz

The Bishop of London, Richard Chartres, has preached at choral evensong to over 150 parishioners and members of the community at St Mary-le-Bow, Cheapside, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of its rebuilding and re-consecration, after the Wren church was almost completely destroyed during the Blitz in 1941.

The 50th anniversary celebrations began earlier this year with a concert of German music given by the Deutsche Bank Singers, reflecting British-German reconciliation and peace.

Subsequent events have included a lecture on the City Churches and the impact of the Blitz, given by historian and author Juliet Gardiner and a unique opportunity for members of the public to visit the tower and try their hand at bell ringing.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Defense, National Security, Military, England / UK, History, Parish Ministry, Urban/City Life and Issues

(Tablet) Mark Langham–Welby and Francis have jump-started ecumenism out of theological cul-de-sacs

[Lord Carey’s] apprehension is reinforced by the change of personalities at the head of the two communions: the theologians Pope Benedict and Rowan Williams have been replaced by leaders whose overarching concern is social, for issues of justice and reconciliation. Accordingly, the visit to Rome by Archbishop Welby this Sunday and Monday will have, at its focus, the shared initiative on human trafficking and slavery, raised a year ago at his first meeting with Pope Francis, and formally launched in March this year with messages of support from both Pope and Archbishop.

Yet any shift in emphasis has to be understood within a broader context of the ecumenical situation. The Catholic partners in dialogue are mindful of the warning given by Pope Benedict in 2012 against reducing ecumenism “to a kind of social contract to be joined for a common interest, a praxeology for creating a better world.” The theology, no matter how difficult, has to be done. But theological dialogue has never been seen as an end in itself, an intellectual endeavour apart from real life. It is an axiom of ecumenical dialogue, going back to the origins of the ecumenical movement, that acting more like Christ together draws Christians together in belief. Archbishop Justin underlined this in his message at the launch of the human trafficking initiative: “The more we share the pain and oppression of the poor and suffering in the name of God, the more God will draw us closer to each other, because we will need each other’s strength and support to make the kind of difference that is needed.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), Ecumenical Relations, Other Churches, Pope Francis, Roman Catholic

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Keep us, O Lord, from the vain strife of words, and grant us a constant profession of our faith. Preserve us in the way of truth, so that we may ever hold fast that which we professed when we were baptized into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and may give glory to thee, our Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier, now and for evermore.

–Hilary of Poitiers

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Spirituality/Prayer, The Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Theology

From the Morning Bible Readings

For I am not ashamed of the gospel: it is the power of God for salvation to every one who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed through faith for faith; as it is written, “He who through faith is righteous shall live.”

–Romans 1:16-17

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

USA Somehow Ekes out a 2-1 Win

So much grit, so much heart. Wow.

John Brooks’ updated Wikipedia page is hilarious.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Ghana, Men, Sports

USA Lead Ghana at Halftime 1-0

So sad to see Jozy Altidore carried off after an injury.

Halftime: Ghana Dominates, But U.S.A. Has the Edge.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Brazil, Ghana, Men, South America, Sports

(CNS) Pope, Anglican archbishop urge joint action to share God's love

Although they have not yet reached full unity, Roman Catholics and Anglicans continue their dialogue, come together in prayer and work side by side, including on a new project to combat human trafficking around the world.

“I thank God that, as disciples sent to heal a wounded world, we stand together with perseverance and determination in opposing this grave evil,” Pope Francis told Anglican Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury June 16 during a meeting at the Vatican.

Archbishop Welby, the spiritual leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion, was in Rome to hold his second meeting with Pope Francis, to visit Anglican communities in the city and to participate in a meeting of the Global Freedom Network, which they and other faith leaders founded to combat human trafficking and modern slavery.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Ecumenical Relations, Ethics / Moral Theology, Other Churches, Pope Francis, Roman Catholic, Sexuality, Theology, Violence