Daily Archives: August 7, 2014

Pittsburgh Episcopal Diocese OKs same-sex marriage certificates

Clergy within the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh may now sign civil marriage certificates between same-sex couples, Bishop Dorsey McConnell confirmed in a recent open letter to the diocese.

The action builds on Bishop McConnell’s decision in November 2013 to allow clergy to conduct blessings of same-sex relationships.

At that time, same-sex marriage was not a legal option in Pennsylvania, but Bishop McConnell and diocesan chancellor Andy Roman reviewed civil and canon law after the May 20 federal court decision ruling that same-sex couples be allowed to marry in the state of Pennsylvania.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, Theology

(Rel and Ethics Report) [The Guardian's] Martin Chulov on the power and fanaticism of ISIS

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria ”“ the group otherwise known as ISIS ”“ is no more. It hasn’t been defeated; if anything it’s stronger and more murderous. But now it’s known simply as the Islamic State, because it doesn’t recognise the old national borders. The New York Times reported that, at the weekend, it crossed into Lebanon. Its fighters have seized control of Iraq’s biggest dam, an oilfield, and three more towns. And the Islamic State is now worth at least two billion US dollars in cash and assets. With that wealth, it’s pursuing a purist and violent dream of a fundamentalist caliphate. And it’s radicalising young men, including, as we’ve seen from the headlines this week, some young Australians. Australian journalist Martin Chulov, Middle East correspondent for The Guardian newspaper, has been face to face with the zealots and warriors of the Sunni “Islamic State”; and they’re facing off against the proxies for Shi’ite Iran. Martin explains the impact this conflict is having on the region.

Listen to it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Iraq, Islam, Middle East, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, Terrorism, Violence

(Telegraph) Gillian Reynolds–The unbearable collision of new wars with old

Commemorations of the First World War have been years in the planning. No one could have foreseen when they began that this solemn anniversary would coincide with so many new wars. The Archbishop of Canterbury noted the grim paradox in his Radio 4 Thought for the Day on Monday morning, “We watch and feel for those suffering,” he said, “fear for those not born.” His final plea, to end war by making friends with our enemies, was heartfelt but, alas, unlikely to be widely translated into action.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Defense, National Security, Military, England / UK, History, Media, Movies & Television

(CT) Ed Stetzer–Act Like Men: What It Means to Fight Like a Man

One of the reasons many churches struggle is they’re not a friendly place for men.

Think about the worship service at your church. More than likely, there’s a lot of talk about loving each other, but not much about fighting against sin or fighting for each other. There’s holding hands when we sing, but not much locking arms as we get marching orders for the mission.

Yes, I’m stereotyping. But, that’s what I often hear from many critics of churches. Regardless of its universal application, men need to be challenged to act like men””that’s what the Bible does. We need to live out our callings as men, to be and do what God has called us to be and do.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Anthropology, Evangelicals, Men, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Theology

Archbishop Justin Welby begins visit to Anglicans in the Philippines and Oceania

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, and his wife Caroline arrived in the Philippine capital of Manila yesterday to begin a 10-day visit to Anglican provinces in the Philippines and Oceania.

Read it all.

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

Yazidi Member of Iraqi Parliament collapses in tears Describing Genocide of Yazidis

Warning–this is very hard to watch, make sure to be in a proper frame of mind to take it in; all of her words are translated in subtitles. When you are ready then watch it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Iraq, Islam, Middle East, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, Terrorism, Theology, Violence

(BBC) Iraq Christians flee as Islamic State takes Qaraqosh

Thousands of Christians are reported to be fleeing after Islamic militants seized the minority’s biggest town in Iraq.

The Islamic State (IS) group captured Qaraqosh in Nineveh province overnight after the withdrawal of Kurdish forces.

An international Christian organisation said at least a quarter of Iraq’s Christians were leaving Qaraqosh and other surrounding towns.

IS has seized large parts of Iraq and Syria to create an Islamic caliphate.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Iraq, Islam, Middle East, Muslim-Christian relations, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture, Terrorism, Violence

(Jules Evans) The Bishop of London on Christian contemplation

Do you think spiritual ecstasy is dangerous?

It certainly can be. We have forgotten how dangerous religion can be. We think of it as a minority leisure pursuit ”“ another cup of tea, Vicar. To remember how dangerous it can be, you have to go back to before religion became obstinately metaphysical, to the Civil War, when the streets around here were filled with Levellers and Fifth Monarchists and other fanatics, who had caused a social revolution.

St Paul’s cathedral is, in some ways, Christopher Wren’s answer to religious enthusiasm ”“ God as a mathematician rather than the terrifying arbitrary God of the Civil War.

The great Bishop Butler says to John Wesley: ”˜pretending to special revelations of the Holy Ghost Mr Wesley is a very horrid thing. It’s a very horrid thing indeed.’ And it is indeed a very horrid thing. Unless it’s held firmly within a community of interpretation, with a shared communal experience of discerning between evil spirits and good spirits, then it’s very dangerous.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anglican Provinces, Church History, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Spirituality/Prayer

(Nigerian Observer) Anglican Synod in Esan condemns terrorists’ activities

The Diocese of Esan, Anglican Communion has condemned the ravaging activities of terrorists and insurgents in Nigeria while urging Nigerians, irrespective of party affiliation or religious inclinations to avoid making inflammatory statements capable of worsening the already bad security situation in the country.

The diocese in a communiqué issued at the end of the third session of the fourth synod held in Eguare, Ebelle, Esan South East Local Government Area of Edo State also noted the helplessness of Nigeria in curtailing the ravaging insurgency in the country, inspite of assistance from the international community.

This, the diocese noted “makes the resort to divine intervention both imperative and timely”,In the communiqué signed by the Archoishop of Bendel province and Bishop of the Diocese, Most Rev. F.J. Imaekhai and the synod clerical secretary of the diocese, Ven A.O. Isibor, the diocese noted that divine direction is underscored by the fact that any nation that fails to heed the call for divine direction is bound to experience the kind of problem the Nigeria nation is confronted with.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Provinces, Church of Nigeria, Nigeria, Religion & Culture, Terrorism, Violence

Overcoming Challenges of Pastoral Work? Peer Support Groups and Psychological Distress among..Clergy

Clergy often face a great deal of occupational stress that in turn can lead to mental distress. In recent years denominations have been turning to peer support groups to combat these challenges, but little research exists regarding their effectiveness. This
study explores the utility of peer support groups for reducing mental distress among pastors by analyzing data from two waves of an ongoing study of United Methodist Church (UMC) clergy in North Carolina, as well as focus group data from the same population. Results indicate that participation in peer support groups had inconsistent direct and indirect relationships to mental distress (measured as mentally unhealthy days, anxiety, and depression). Focus group data indicated that the mixed results may be due to individual differences among group participants, which in turn lead to a mix of positive and negative group experiences.

Read it all (Hat tip: DP).

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Methodist, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Theology

(ABC Aus.) Nicholas Tonti-Filippini: Baby Gammy: Disability, Discrimination and Surrogacy

Before birth, it is accepted practice to inject the heart of the unborn child with potassium chloride to cause death before inducing a stillbirth, or late term there may be a partial birth abortion in which during delivery an instrument is inserted into the child’s brain through the back of the neck so it also is born dead. After birth, even the birth of a baby of the same or even less maturity or gestational age, to end the life would be regarded as a criminal offence in most jurisdictions.

Anecdotally, mothers who opt not to have their child given the fatal injection before birth are placed under great pressure to use the technique to prevent the birth of a child with a disability. It is a cognitive dissonance that seems irresolvable that birth, not maturity or gestational age, is what makes the difference in status of the infant.

Cultural attitudes to disability are obviously conflictual. Public reaction appears to condemn the commissioning couple for reportedly deserting a child on the basis of disability and the inherently discriminatory attitude involved, but would presumably have accepted the killing of baby Gammy before birth at the request of the commissioning couple or the agency, if the birth mother had acquiesced.

There are many other conflicts underlying this case.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Anthropology, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Law & Legal Issues, Life Ethics, Marriage & Family, Other Churches, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Theology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of John Mason Neale

Grant unto us, O God, that in all time of our testing we may know thy presence and obey thy will; that, following the example of thy servant John Mason Neale, we may with integrity and courage accomplish what thou givest us to do, and endure what thou givest us to bear; 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, Church History, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer for For Great and Simple Joys to Begin the Day

Let us praise and thank God for all great and simple joys;

For the gift of wonder and the joy of discovery; for the everlasting freshness of experience;

For all that comes to us through sympathy and through sorrow, and for the joy of work attempted and achieved;

For musicians, poets and craftsmen, and for all who work in form and color to increase the beauty of life;

For the likeness of Christ in ordinary people, their forbearance, courage and kindness, and for all obscure and humble lives of service;

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost ever world without end.

–The Pastor’s Prayerbook

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

And as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them, annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they arrested them and put them in custody until the morrow, for it was already evening. But many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to about five thousand.

On the morrow their rulers and elders and scribes were gathered together in Jerusalem, with Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family. And when they had set them in the midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?” Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, if we are being examined today concerning a good deed done to a cripple, by what means this man has been healed, be it known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by him this man is standing before you well. This is the stone which was rejected by you builders, but which has become the head of the corner. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

–Acts 4:1-12

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Index of All Recent Entries about Diocese of SC Litigation

Here is a list of recently featured entries about the Diocese of SC Litigation
Latest news Diocese of SC and on Facebook and Twitter

July 6: A Pastoral Letter from Bishop Mark Lawrence Regarding the Upcoming Trial

Latest Articles
Aug 1: Trial Ends: Highlights from the Trial of the Diocese of SC vs. TEC and TECSC
Aug 1: A. S. Haley””Making Sense of the Trial in South Carolina between TEC and the Diocese of SC
July 28: A Message from Bishop Mark Lawrence at the Close of the recent Diocese of SC Trial
July 26: South Carolina Diocesan Trial Day 14””Drama Ends with the Testimony of Bishop Mark Lawrence

More articles follow by clicking on the “read more” link below…

More entries from during the trial:
July 26: An AP Article on the South Carolina Episcopal Court Case as it Wound up this week
July 26: New TEC Diocese in SC offers More Reports from the trial in Dorchester County
July 25: Diocese of South Carolina Trial””Jeremy Bonner gives an account of Yesterday’s proceedings
July 24: Trial Day 13: Expert in Religious History Allen Guelzo Testifies TEC Holds No Control Over Dioceses
July 24: Diocese of SC Day 12: TEC Uses Bishop vonRosenberg to Claim Dioceses Can’t Leave
July 23: Diocese of SC Trial Day 11-TEC Spends Day Making Arguments Judge Rules Irrelevant
July 23: A.S. Haley””Diocese of South Carolina Trial Day 11: a Waste of Time
July 22: Diocese of SC Trial Day 10: TEC Attorney Admits Constitution Does Not Prevent Diocesan Withdrawal
July 22: A S Haley’s Comments on SC Trial Day 10””Witness again Barred from Rendering Undisclosed Opinions
July 19: Diocese of South Carolina Trial””A.S. Haley’s Important Analysis of this weeks events
July 18: SC Trial Day 9””TEC Bishop Testifies Nothing in Governing Documents Says a Diocese Can’t Withdraw
July 18: SC Trial day 8-Judge Scolds TEC for Trying to Sneak “Expert Witnesses” into Trial”¦
July 19: New TEC Diocese in SC offers Reports from the trial in Dorchester County
July 17: SC Trial Day Seven: TEC Witness Admits Diocesan Constitution Trumps TEC’s
July 16: Trial Day 6: Bishop Lawrence Tried to Keep Diocese of S.C. “Intact and in TEC”
July 15: Trial Day Five: Diocese of SC v. The Episcopal Church’s new diocese in SC
July 13: A Summerville, S.C. Journal Scene Article on the TEC Diocese in SC vs Diocese of SC trial
July 12: Day 4: Judge Asks Both Sides of Diocese of SC Case to Agree on Facts for Parish Witness Testimony
July 11: A.S. Haley””Falsehoods Being Spread in South Carolina
July 11: New TEC Diocese in SC offers Reports from the trial in the Circuit Court in Dorchester County
July 11: Day 3 Testimony of trial between new TEC diocese and Diocese of SC Explores Facts about Parishes
July 10: [Locusts and Wild Honey blog] Anglican conflict survival guide
July 10: Get Religion on recent stories on Anglican developments in South Carolina
July 10: Second Day of South Carolina Trial Includes Testimony from Treasurer
July 9: Local Paper Article on the New TEC Diocese’s Decision to Allow for Same-Sex Union Blessings
July 9: The Trial to Protect Diocese of South Carolina Assets Begins

During the trial, Lent & Beyond posted daily prayers for the Diocese of South Carolina during this litigation process. A.S. Haley was posting daily trial updates at StandFirm

You can find all T19 posts about the conflict in South Carolina using this link TEC Conflicts: South Carolina category. Two previous posts South Carolina Links and South Carolina Chronology provide a history of the conflict up until October 2013.

Other Recent Entries:
July 8: TEC Bishop grants permission for blessings of same-sex relationships in new Diocese
July 7: Local paper major article on Lawsuit New TEC Diocese is bringing against the Diocese of South Car.
July 7: For Those of you who are Twitterites, the Diocese of South Carolina is now on twitter
July 7: A.S. Haley””The Two-Faced Episcopal Church
July 6: The PR from the new Episcopal Church Diocese in South Carolina about the Lawsuit
July 6: Prayer Vigil for the Trial (at Camp St. Christopher Prayer Center) Starting Monday, July 7th, 2014
July 5: (A S Haley) South Carolina Court Reporters Will Be Busy on Monday
July 3: The Dio. of South Carolina’s Response to TEC’s Request for Continuance which was adjudicated today
July 3: TEC appeals Circuit judges’ order from earlier today to SC Court of Appeals; They are denied
July 3: Trial to Protect Diocese of SC Assets Begins Tuesday, July 8
June 29: (AP) Wasting more Time and Money, the Episcopal Church tries a 4th Time to add Parties to S.C Suit
June 27: AS Haley: South Carolina Rump Group Files Frivolous Appeal To Delay Trial
May 8: A.S. Haley Offers Thoughts on recent TEC Court Decisions in Calif. and South Carolina
April 8: A.S. Haley””South Carolina Supreme Court Takes Jurisdiction of Appeals
April 7: SC Supreme Court Takes Jurisdiction Over TEC Appeals

Articles from January – March 2014:
March 24: A.S. Haley on the recent legal Rulings in the Episcopal Church’s S.C. and Texas Legal Battles
March 19: Diocese of South Carolina Convention – Links Roundup
March 18: SC Court of Appeals Denies TEC Appeal
March 18: Court of Appeals dismisses new Diocese of TEC in SC’s appeal in case against Dio. of South Car.
March 16: The Diocese of South Carolina Formalizes Wordwide Anglican Ties at 2014 Convention
March 16: (Local paper) Diocese of South Carolina accepts provisional oversight from Global South primates
March 12: Proposed Resolutions for the Diocese of South Carolina Convention upcoming this Fri/Sat
March 7: Bishop Mark Lawrence’s Message Regarding Resolution R-3 for the Upcoming SC Convention
March 1: A Local Paper art. on the new TEC Diocese involved in multiple lawsuits against the Dio. of SC
Feb 7: SC Diocese Seeks to End TEC Stalling Tactics by Asking State Supreme Court to Hear Appeal
Jan 16: (Diocese of S.C.) TEC denied again by Judge in attempt to seize Diocese of SC identity
Jan 13: The Personal Testimony of Mr. Alan Runyan, Attorney for the Diocese of South Carolina
Jan 7: South Carolina Legal Developments (II)””Commentary from A.S. Haley on S.C. and San Joaquin
Jan 7: South Carolina Legal Developments (I)””Diocese of South Carolina Wins Again Against Episcopal Church

Articles from late 2013
Nov 29: (Christian Post) Episcopal Church Files New Motion Against Hisotoric South Carolina Diocese
Nov 26: A.S. Haley””Rump TEC Diocese Tries “Hail Mary” Pass in South Carolina
Nov 26: (Local Paper) New TEC Diocese in S.C. Claims Conspiracy, Other Charges Against Diocese of SC Leaders
Nov 25: (Anglican Ink) TEC seeks to add 4 Diocesan Leaders to Their Latest South Carolina Lawsuit
October 12: (Local Paper) Historic S.C. Diocese retains right to use names and seal, new TEC Diocese Can’t
October 11: Judge Rejects TEC’s Request to Remove Injunction Protecting S.C. Diocesan Names and Seal
October 3: Judge Denies TEC Request to Expand South Carolina Lawsuit
Sept 19: A.S. Haley on the Latest South Carolina TEC Legal Maneuver to Appeal Judge Houck’s Decision
Sept 19: The ENS Article on the legal request of the new S.C. TEC Bishop to reconsider dismissal
Sept 19: (AP) Bishop of the new TEC South Carolina Diocese asks the judge to reconsider in Episcopal case
Sept 14: ACI – Affidavit of Mark McCall on The Episcopal Church’s Polity
August 23: Federal Judge Dismisses Case Against Bishop Mark Lawrence
August 12: A.S. Haley””More Episcopal Church related Court Proceedings in South Carolina

For a prior roundup to articles about South Carolina lawsuits and related issues, see here.

Posted in * Admin, * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Episcopal Church (TEC), Featured (Sticky), Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, TEC Polity & Canons

Some interesting Church of Ireland records have been made available online

Killucan, Co Westmeath, Parish Registers (1696”“1786)

Drogheda, Co Louth, St Peter’s Parish registers (1702”“1900)

Taughboyne Union Registers, Co Donegal, (Taughboyne, All Saints’ Newtowncunningham, Killea & Craigdoonish)
(1820 ”“ 1900)…

Check it out.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Blogging & the Internet, Church History, Church of Ireland, Parish Ministry

(RNS) Vatican: Abandoned Down syndrome baby is victim of ”˜throwaway’ culture

“We should not be surprised if parents who have ordered a baby and rented a woman’s womb refuse it at birth if it is not healthy and perfect,” said an article published in the Vatican’s semiofficial newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano.

“In fact if a child becomes a product to buy, it is obvious that as with any acquisition it must meet with the buyer’s approval.”

The strongly worded commentary was written by prominent Catholic feminist and regular contributor Lucetta Scaraffia, who argued the child’s rejection was to be expected in the “explosive mix” of consumerism combined with a “throwaway culture.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anthropology, Children, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Law & Legal Issues, Life Ethics, Marriage & Family, Science & Technology, Theology

(Onion) Seventh-Grader Only Has 2 Weeks Left To Acquire Cool Identity By First Day Of School

Expressing concern that his summer vacation is too quickly passing him by, local incoming seventh-grader Matthew Valentine told reporters Tuesday he now has just two weeks left in which to acquire a cool new identity before school starts.

The 13-year-old acknowledged that he must dedicate all his remaining free time to developing a socially acceptable persona he can display to his classmates, noting that he still has a lot of work to do if he is to assemble a recognizable combination of attitudes, style choices, interests, and favorite bands that will win his peers’ approval during the upcoming school year.

“The clock is ticking, and I still haven’t figured out who I’m going to be yet,” said Valentine, adding that he hopes to remake himself as a popular kid, a scenester, a rebel, a hip-hop head, or a member of some other respected social category prior to his first day of classes at Thomas Jefferson Middle School.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Education, Humor / Trivia, Teens / Youth