Daily Archives: September 12, 2014

(NYT) A 9/11 Shrine Where Families Mourned for Years, Now Open to Others

Twenty stories above ground zero, its existence and whereabouts known only to those who needed it, the Family Room served for a dozen years as a most private sanctuary from a most public horror.

It was spartan office space at a 54-story tower at 1 Liberty Plaza for families to be by themselves, a temporary haven where they could find respite from bad weather and the curious stares of passers-by. Piece by piece, without any planning, it was transformed into an elaborate shrine known only to them.

Unconstrained and undesigned, a profusion of intimate expressions of love and loss filled the walls of the room, the tabletops, the floors and, even, the windows, obscuring views of the World Trade Center site below, as if to say: Jim and John and Jonathan and Harvey and Gary and Jean and Welles and Isaias and Katherine and Christian and Judy are all here, with us, not down there in the ruins.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Children, Death / Burial / Funerals, History, Marriage & Family, Parish Ministry, Terrorism, Urban/City Life and Issues, Violence

Archbp Welby has his own ale brewed by Malmesbury Brewery during West tour

On Saturday, the morning sees the Archbishop formally opening a ‘Ride and Stride’ fundraising event from St Mary’s Church inside the grounds of Lydiard Park in Swindon, then attending a community funday on the Pinehurst Estate. He will also celebrate the third anniversary of a new LIGHT church in Chippenham before conducting around 20 baptisms in a pool set up in front of Malmesbury Abbey in north Wiltshire.

That event will soon turn into a community party and includes live music, a hog roast, curry buffet and a bar, at which a special beer called ‘Welby’s Wallop’ will be served. The beer is the idea of Malmesbury vicar Neill Archer, and has been brewed by the Royal Wootton Bassett-based Malmesbury Brewery.

The Archbishop might not be there long enough to drink too much of it though ”“ he has to head back towards Bristol for a community event at Stoke Gifford. On Sunday morning, the penultimate event will be a huge Eucharist service in Bristol Cathedral before the final event ”“ a Question Time-style debate on children and young people in Bristol at the Cathedral Choir school.

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Posted in Uncategorized

(BBC) Archbishop Justin Welby to visit the Diocese of Bristol

During Archbishop Welby’s tour he will visit locations including St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School, in central Bristol, and take part in a community fun day in Swindon.

He will also baptise new Christians in a baptismal pool outside Malmesbury Abbey, on Saturday.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Justin Welby, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE)

J Perry Smith on Sermons–"So many preachers…especially in the Mainline…[are] really boring"

Preaching is really hard, and many churchgoing people have no idea what goes into preparing a sermon. Perhaps they shouldn’t care, but preachers are disappointed to find that many folks think we just preach on Sundays and do little else. There are preachers who wait until Saturday night to get their sermons ready; they are either extremely gifted or stupid and lazy.

The late Rev. Dunstan Stout, a Roman Catholic missionary priest to the American community in Mexico City, was the best homilist I have heard, ever. I knew him in the mid-1960s, and he could deliver a four- to six-minute homily, hard-hitting and even accusatory, and everyone in the church believed he was speaking directly to them…[He said] “a homily or sermon must be Gospel-centered and relevant to the listeners.” His final rule on preaching: “Never say anything from the pulpit that you do not believe.”

Preachers, past and present, violate Father Stout’s rules. Sometimes I suspect the problem is that these preachers have lost their Gospel faith and turned to their own agenda. One hears social justice and political agendas of all sorts preached, but little or nothing of the Gospel.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., History, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Religion & Culture

(CEN) New religious community planned for Lambeth Palace

Lambeth Palace is to be home to a new religious community of people aged between 20 and 35, which will be known as the Community of St Anselm. According to the Lambeth press release members will be drawn from every walk of life with no formal requirements needed and will spend a year studying, praying and taking part in service of the community, although in an interview with the BBC the Archbishop spoke of a community of ”˜postgraduates’ who would be ”˜mainly Anglican’. The Community will be launched in September 2015 and will consist of 15 full-time members with a further 40 people who live and work in London joining part-time. Lambeth Palace is in the process of recruiting a Prior to pioneer the new venture and direct its worship and life. The Prior will act under the supervision of the Archbishop who will function as an ”˜Abbot’ to the community. A website has been set up asking for volunteers. It speaks of community members ”˜seeking to draw closer to God through a daily rhythm of silence, study and prayer’ but also promises potential recruits that ”˜they will be immersed in the modern challenges of the global 21st century church’.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Religion & Culture, Spirituality/Prayer, Young Adults

(American Interest) Peter Berger–The Many Altars of Modernity

There is an underlying assumption here, shared by religious conservatives and their progressive antagonists (they just differ on what to do about it), and indeed (still) widespread both in academic and popular assessments of the contemporary world: that modernity means a decline of religion and its concomitant morality. Without dissecting this concept any further, this is what is meant by the concept of secularization; for our purposes here we can mean by secularism the idea that secularization is not just a fact, but one to be applauded and promoted. But is it a basic fact of our age? It is certainly a fact; but is it the fact by which our age is to be defined? I think it is not. It is not equally dispersed globally”“strongly so in Europe, not at all in Nepal, somewhere in between in Texas. However, what is much more universally dispersed is a fact mentioned by John Paul II in his address to the Latin American bishops: that “faith is no longer taken for granted”. Rather, faith must be based on an individual decision.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Inter-Faith Relations, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Theology

(Church Times) Canon Jeremy Pemberton mounts a legal challenge over lost NHS job

In August, the [United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS ] Trust withdrew the [job] offer, after the Bishop, the Rt Revd Richard Inwood, refused to grant the licence (News, 8 August). He was unable to do so, he declared, “in light of the pastoral guidance, and for reasons of consistency” -referring to the House of Bishops’ pastoral guidance, which states that clergy should not enter into same-sex marriages. Canon Pemberton married Laurence Cunnington in April…

On Monday, Canon Pemberton said: “I am deeply saddened that I have had to take this step against church authorities. However, I feel I have been left with little choice, having found myself being punished and discriminated against simply for exercising my right to marry. I will be making no further comment until these matters have been resolved through the court process.”

Among those assisting Canon Pemberton in his claim are Helen Trotter, a barrister specialising in employment and discrimination, and the Revd Justin Gau, a barrister specialising in both employment and ecclesiastical law, and Chancellor of the diocese of Bristol.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Economy, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Law & Legal Issues, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology

(Wash. Post) U.S. threatened massive fine to force Yahoo to release data

The U.S. government threatened to fine Yahoo $250,000 a day in 2008 if it failed to comply with a broad demand to hand over user communications ”” a request the company believed was unconstitutional — according to court documents unsealed Thursday that illuminate how federal officials forced American tech companies to participate in the NSA’s controversial PRISM program.

The documents, roughly 1,500 pages worth, outline a secret and ultimately unsuccessful legal battle by Yahoo to resist the government’s demands. The company’s loss required Yahoo to become one of the first to begin providing information to PRISM, a program that gave the National Security Agency extensive access to records of online communications by users of Yahoo and other U.S.-based technology firms.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Law & Legal Issues, The U.S. Government, Theology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of John Henry Hobart

Revive thy Church, Lord God of hosts, whensoever it doth fall into complacency and sloth, by raising up devoted leaders, like thy servant John Henry Hobart whom we remember this day; and grant that their faith and vigor of mind may awaken thy people to thy message and their mission; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), Spirituality/Prayer, TEC Bishops

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O Heavenly Father, who hast filled the world with beauty: Open our eyes, we beseech thee, to behold thy gracious hand in all thy works; that rejoicing in thy whole creation, we may learn to serve thee with gladness; for the sake of him by whom all things were made, thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

–The American BCP

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

And all the assembly kept silence; and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles. After they finished speaking, James replied, “Brethren, listen to me. Simeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name. And with this the words of the prophets agree, as it is written,

”˜After this I will return,
and I will rebuild the dwelling of David, which has fallen;
I will rebuild its ruins,
and I will set it up,
that the rest of men may seek the Lord,
and all the Gentiles who are called by my name,
says the Lord, who has made these things known from of old.’

Therefore my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God, but should write to them to abstain from the pollutions of idols and from unchastity and from what is strangled and from blood. For from early generations Moses has had in every city those who preach him, for he is read every sabbath in the synagogues.”

–Acts 15:12-21

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Never Forget: Remembering 9/11 Through Pictures

Take a look at them all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * General Interest, History, Photos/Photography, Terrorism

Moving Photos Of some of the 9/11 First Responders

Examine them all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Economy, History, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Law & Legal Issues, Photos/Photography, Police/Fire, Terrorism, Urban/City Life and Issues

Jeffrey Goldberg–The Real Meaning of 9/11

Shortly after 9/11, I visited the father of Muhammad Atta, the ringleader of the hijackers, in Cairo. Muhammad al-Amir Atta, the father, told me that, against all evidence, his son was still alive, that it was the Mossad that had framed him. He was angry and aggressive, but also seemed gripped by melancholy, and I sensed he knew the truth: That his son was a mass murderer, and that he was dead. We spoke for a few minutes, and I asked him a question he answered as if it were theoretical. I asked, What would motivate your son to do such a thing to innocent people? He answered, “You can’t be a human and do this thing. It’s impossible.”

That is the crucial truth of 9/11. Osama Bin Laden had gathered to him men who were devoid of love, and who found in al Qaeda a vehicle for expressing their hatred of humanity. On the 10th anniversary of the murderous rampage committed by soulless men, we should remember the victims, and count our own blessings, and recommit ourselves to the suppression of evil and the protection of the innocent.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., History, Terrorism

The 9/11 Encyclopedia

This really is quite something–explore it and see what strikes a chord with you.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., History, Terrorism

One of many stories on that day–an F-16 pilot was ready to give her life on Sept. 11

Late in the morning of the Tuesday that changed everything, Lt. Heather “Lucky” Penney was on a runway at Andrews Air Force Base and ready to fly. She had her hand on the throttle of an F-16 and she had her orders: Bring down United Airlines Flight 93. The day’s fourth hijacked airliner seemed to be hurtling toward Washington. Penney, one of the first two combat pilots in the air that morning, was told to stop it.

The one thing she didn’t have as she roared into the crystalline sky was live ammunition. Or missiles. Or anything at all to throw at a hostile aircraft.

Except her own plane. So that was the plan.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, History, Terrorism, Women