Daily Archives: September 29, 2014

(USA Today) Religious leaders try to cope with ISIS attacks

Religious leaders agree the Islamic State ”” also known as ISIL or ISIS ”” must be stopped. Their struggle is how best to do it.

“As mainstream religious leaders of different faiths get together, it strengthens the voice of moderation,” said Ibrahim Hooper of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim advocacy group.

A group of mainstream Muslim scholars sought to strip the Iraqi and Syrian militants of any legitimacy under the cover of Islam in an open letter in Arabic issued Wednesday.”‹”‹

Read it all.

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

Commitment to Marriage-A Letter to the Third Extraordinary General RC Assembly of Synod of Bishops

This Synod is an opportunity to express timeless truths about marriage. Why do those truths matter? How do they represent true love, not “exclusion” or “prejudice,” or any of the other charges brought against marriage today? Men and women need desperately to hear the truth about why they should get married in the first place. And, once married, why Christ and the Church desire that they should remain faithful to each other throughout their lives on this earth. That, when marriage gets tough (as it does for most couples), the Church will be a source of support, not just for individual spouses, but for the marriage itself.

You have written so powerfully, Holy Father, of the importance of a new evangelization within the Church: “An evangelizing community gets involved by word and deed in people’s daily lives; it bridges distances, it is willing to abase itself if necessary and it embraces human life, touching the suffering flesh of Christ in others.”

May we humbly suggest that in the context of marriage and family life your words are a call to personal responsibility, not only for our own spouses and children, but for the marriages of those God has put by our side: our relatives and friends, those in our churches and in our schools.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Children, Ecumenical Relations, Ethics / Moral Theology, Evangelicals, Globalization, Marriage & Family, Other Churches, Pope Francis, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Theology

William Taylor's Report from ReNew 2014

330 clergy and senior lay leaders gathered at the Chesford Grange conference centre near Warwick for the 2014 ReNew conference.

ReNew is organised jointly by Church Society, Reform and the Anglican Mission in England (AMiE). In 2013 these three organisations were tasked by that year’s ReNew conference with planning a way forward for Anglican evangelicals. The planning was undertaken over a nine month period, and the Basis of Faith and ReNew Commitment were agreed by their Councils and Steering Groups and by other Anglican evangelical leaders.

The majority of delegates at ReNew 2014 were incumbents of local churches, with a large number of curates and churchwardens.

The ReNew Commitment has at its heart the evangelisation of England, and the establishment of healthy, biblical local churches. Delegates committed to working both regionally and nationally towards a ”˜nation of healthy Anglican churches’. Local Anglican evangelical churches are to be established by working both within and, where necessary, outside Church of England structures, and both with and, where necessary, without Diocesan approval.

The Revd Dr Mike Ovey, Principal of Oak Hill Theological College, addressed the conference on the subject of Christology. His masterful addresses exalted Christ for His person and work, and uncovered the errors (biblical, theological and historical) of those who accuse complementarians of being Arian. Bible readings from 1 Timothy provided strong encouragement for delegates to be church leaders intent on establishing churches that are ”˜fit for purpose’ and themselves to be good servants of Christ Jesus.

ReNew 2015 is already planned for 21-­”22 September at the Chesford Grange conference centre. The ReNew planning group has been tasked with creating a means by which Church Society, AMiE and Reform churches will support one another and act together nationally.

Revd William Taylor
Chairman, ReNew Planning Committee
& Rector, St Helen Bishopsgate

Read it all linked here

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE)

ReNew 2014 Commitment

A. As individuals and churches we commit, by God’s grace and in God’s strength, to pray and to work for a nation of healthy, local Anglican churches throughout England.

B. In particular from October 2014 ”“ September 2015, we commit to use our best endeavours:

1. Locally to
a. Investigate the opportunities to revitalise an existing Church of England church and/or plant with or without diocesan approval;
b. Devise a strategy to establish my/our local Anglican church in good health, and/or to secure my/our local Anglican church for the next generation.


2. Regionally to work with other Anglican Evangelicals
a. to take responsibility for our region to pioneer, establish and secure healthy Anglican churches. To this end we will work to recruit, train and deploy men and women for Anglican ministry in local churches, and
b. to contend together for the faith once delivered to the saints by developing a joint approach to working within our diocese /region given the theological convictions and teaching of the diocesan leadership.


3. Nationally to support Reform, AMiE, and Church Society so they can work together to:
a. create a national database of Anglican Evangelical churches, clergy and laity
b. train men and women for gospel ministry (selection & funding)
c. provide advice on appointing a vicar: patronage, parish profiles etc
d. provide a national leadership conference: ReNew
e. encourage the provision of training for church planting
f. provide advice and training on political and legal issues
g. provide advice to help churches and regions contend
h. engage and contend at a national level ”“ with the Church of England, state and media
i. publish accessible theological studies, and
j. ensure the provision of authorised episcopal oversight.

4. To come together again at ReNew 2015 from 21-22 September 2015.

C. We are committed to support one another and stand together, nationally. Therefore we request a representative group from Reform, AMiE, and Church Society to meet, plan, and bring a proposal in 2015 for our mutual support and united stance.

Read it all

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE)

ReNew Basis of Faith

“Every member of the ReNew Planning Committee and all those the Committee invite to
address the ReNew Conference will be asked to confirm that what they believe and teach is
faithful to this ReNew Basis of Faith.”
Knowing that unity is a work of the Holy Spirit which can only be established through the
atoning work of the Lord Jesus Christ,
we rejoice in the fellowship of all those who subscribe to
the 2008 Jerusalem Declaration.

We accept the definition of the doctrine of the Church of England as set out in Canon A5:
The doctrine of the Church of England is grounded in the Holy Scriptures, and in such teachings
of the ancient Fathers and Councils of the Church as are agreeable to the said Scriptures. In
particular such doctrine is to be found in the 39 Articles of Religion, the Book of Common Prayer,
and the Ordinal

In particular:

We receive the canonical books of the Old and New Testaments in their intended literal sense
as the inspired and unerring Word of God, the sole sufficient and perspicuous rule of Christian
faith and practice and the final court of appeal in all controversies relating thereto. The Old
Testament is to be interpreted in the light of the New, and all parts of the New Testament are of
equal and apostolic authority. No part of Scripture is to be interpreted in a way which
contradicts or excludes any other part.

We acknowledge the Lord Jesus Christ as our only Priest and Mediator who took our place on
the cross and by his sacrificial death paid the price for all our sins, thereby fully satisfying the
demands of the Father’s justice and reconciling both us to God and God to us. Through his
death alone, we gain full access to God and, therefore confident of God’s mercy and by an act
of his free grace, we are accepted as righteous by faith alone for Christ’s sake alone, apart
from our good works. Nevertheless, a true and living faith in Christ brings forth good works and
a loving heart to obey his commandments.

We affirm that men and women are equal as human beings created in the image and likeness
of God. We also affirm that God created male and female differently, in order for them to be
complementary to each other. This complementarity is specially to be seen in the marriage
relationship and in the roles given to men and women in the family of the church. Thus
matrimony is the lifelong union between one man and one woman, and sexual relations outside
that context are sinful in God’s eyes. Furthermore, within the church there is a divinely
appointed order in which eldership/oversight roles are given to men only, not for the purpose of
domination, but in order to protect and nourish the entire body of Christ. The ministry of men
and women is equally valid, valuable and necessary in God’s eyes, but the Church must take
care to study and to obey Scripture with regard to preserving the complementarity of roles.

Read it all

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE)

Lent and Beyond is now on Twitter

The prayer blog Lent and Beyond is now on Twitter (@anglicanprayer). If you’re on Twitter, please check out their feed and spread the news.

In addition to Tweeting the latest entries at Lent & Beyond, they are also sending out links to helpful prayers and devotional resources, as well as actively participating in and helping to promote the Pray to end Ebola (#praytoendebola) prayer campaign. Please do join them in praying against the Ebola epidemic this week.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Resources & Links, Resources: blogs / websites, Spirituality/Prayer

Local paper profiles Berkeley Electric CEO who also serves and sometimes preaches at his parish

In his spare time, he likes to hunt, fish, hike or camp. And some Sundays might find Cartwright in the pulpit. He occasionally serves as a fill-in pastor at Bonneau’s First Baptist Church, where he attends.

[Dwayne] Cartwright has not only a degree in history, but also religion. His father, Norman, is a pastor, and the younger Cartwright followed a calling to become ordained as well at age 22. In addition to a full-time job, he served as minister at Corinth Baptist Church in Salem, Mo., for 25 years.

“I enjoy helping people very much,” he said. “I am an encourager. It gets back to my gratification from seeing people succeed.”

Bonneau First Baptist Church Pastor Ken Owens called Cartwright a model citizen.

“He is a man of integrity with Christian principles,” Owens said. “On many occasions when I’m out of town on vacation or at conferences, he preaches for us and does a tremendous job. If he’s available, he will be there.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * South Carolina, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Religion & Culture

The Right Reverend Michael Scott-Joynt RIP

From the Diocese of Winchester

29 September 2014

We are sorry to announce the death of the former Bishop of Winchester, the Right Reverend Michael Scott-Joynt. The Right Reverend Tim Dakin has said:
Dear Friends,

You may already have heard the news that Bishop Michael Scott-Joynt died on Saturday afternoon. His family were with him and he had been anointed; two bishop colleagues had prayed with him.

Michael led this Diocese with great integrity, both through his ministry and his strength of personality. I had the joy of working with him on a number of occasions before his retirement and then it was an honour to follow in his footsteps as Bishop of Winchester. Michael was a true servant for the Church of England at home and for the wider Anglican Communion abroad, particularly in Africa. He will long be remembered in our parishes and his presence sorely missed.

Our prayers at this difficult time are with Lou and the family.


The Right Reverend Tim Dakin, Bishop of Winchester

Read it all and there is a report from the BBC

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops

Ben Stevens offers Food for Thought to Begin the Week

From here:

My primary passion is “fighting theological illiteracy.” I want Christians to understand what they believe and non-Christians to understand what they’re rejecting. There’s lots of room to grow in both areas, and every project I have can be traced back to that primary passion.

Posted in Apologetics, Theology

Boeing: Asia Pacific region leads global demand for pilots, technicians

Boeing Co. projects the Asia Pacific region’s demand for new commercial pilots and maintenance technicians over the next 20 years will be 39 percent of the global need for new airline personnel.

The Chicago-based airplane manufacturer’s Pilot and Technician Outlook, an industry forecast of aviation personnel demand, projects a requirement for 216,000 new commercial airline pilots and 224,000 new technicians in the Asia Pacific region through 2033, more demand than North America and Europe combined.

“The Asia Pacific region is seeing tremendous economic growth and is set to become the largest air travel market in the world,” said Bob Bellitto, a director at Boeing Flight Services. “That growth rate means booming career opportunities for those interested in becoming commercial airline pilots and maintenance technicians over the next two decades. These are strong, stable and challenging jobs in one of the most technologically advanced industries in the world.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * South Carolina, Asia, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Globalization, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market

([London] Times) Britain caught in a lost decade for pay

The “squeezed middle” is being forced to endure a lower standard of living more than a decade on from the credit crunch, keeping consumer spending growth below pre-crisis levels.

The EY Item Club predicts that real take-home pay in 2017 will still be below the rate in 2007 because of subdued wage growth.

The economic forecaster’s report will make for uneasy reading for George Osborne as he prepares to address the Conservative party conference today, and it is compounded by further evidence from a free market think-tank of the existence of a “cost of living crisis”.

Read it all (requires subscription).

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Anthropology, Children, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Housing/Real Estate Market, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Marriage & Family, Personal Finance, Politics in General, Theology

(Dell Rapids Tribune) A Little Piece of Iowa History: Church of the living water Episcopal

The Episcopal Church was one of the pioneer churches of Dell Rapids, the Guild being organized when the town was only eight years old. In 1879, the idea of building an Episcopal Church was brought up, and a meeting was held in the sitting room of the Exchange Hotel to discuss raising funds. In the meantime, a warehouse was purchased for $100 and moved to a lot on Pearl Street (now 4th Street) and made suitable for holding church services. The lot was purchased from Peter Morse, the town’s founder.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Church History, Episcopal Church (TEC), History, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, TEC Parishes

(CC) In North Carolina, Winning souls to the polls

“This is called a voting altar call!” said William Barber, a leader in the Moral Mondays movement in North Carolina, which since 2013 has been challenging new legislation coming out of the Republican-controlled statehouse. Barber stood on a temporary stage in the middle of CCB Plaza in Durham, surrounded by hundreds on a Monday in late July.

Barber was focused on the one political issue that undergirds all others: the right to vote. Since last summer, when the U.S. Supreme Court in Shelby County v. Holder gave state governments more power to shape election laws without federal oversight, legislators from Virginia to Arizona have been erecting new barriers to voting. This is part of a broader trend. Even states like Ohio and Kansas, which weren’t covered under the litigated Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. have been changing election procedures, such as requiring photo IDs at voting precincts or cutting early-voting schedules. The new rules in North Carolina are among the most restrictive. The March to the Polls rally in Durham was just one of many efforts to rally blacks and other minorities to the voting booths in the face of new rules that would keep them out.

“We come to Durham, and we’re going all over this state to say to [state house Speaker Thom] Tillis, to say to [state senate president pro tem Phil] Berger, to say to [Governor Pat] McCrory, when we fight in North Carolina, this is not merely a political fight, this is the fight of history, this is the fight of our time, this is a blood fight,” said Barber, head of the North Carolina chapter of the NAACP. “We need to make sure they cannot figure out this election because they ain’t never seen folk organized like they will see us organized in a so-called off year.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, State Government, Theology

Archbishop Justin Welby to preach at service for journalists killed in war

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will preach at a special service for journalists who have died while reporting from conflict zones.

It will be the first time an Archbishop of Canterbury has attended the annual service, which has been held at St Bride’s Church on Fleet Street in London for the last seven years.

Held shortly before Remembrance Sunday each year, the service commemorates reporters, photographers, cameramen and support staff who have died on the frontline.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Death / Burial / Funerals, Defense, National Security, Military, England / UK, Globalization, Media, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Theology

(NC Register) Celebrating the Archangels: 7 things to know and share

1) What is an archangel?

The word “archangel” (Greek, archangelos) means “high-ranking angel” the same way that “archbishop” means a high-ranking bishop.

Only St. Michael is described as an archangel in Scripture (Jude 9), but it is common to honor St.s Gabriel and Raphael as archangels also.

2) Why are they called “saints” if they’re angels rather than humans?

The word “saint” (Greek, hagios) means “holy one.”

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Religion News & Commentary, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Other Churches, Roman Catholic, Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Saint Michael and All Angels

O everlasting God, who hast ordained and constituted the ministries of angels and men in a wonderful order: Mercifully grant that, as thy holy angels always serve and worship thee in heaven, so by thy appointment they may help and defend us on earth; 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 Year / Liturgical Seasons, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who dost feed the birds and clothe the flowers, and who carest for us as a father for his children: We beseech thee of thy tender goodness to save us from distrust and vain self-concern; that with unwavering faith we may cast our every care on thee, and live in daily obedience to thy will; through thy beloved Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

–Austrian Church Order, 1571

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

“Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her. And there I will give her her vineyards, and make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. And there she shall answer as in the days of her youth, as at the time when she came out of the land of Egypt. “And in that day, says the LORD, you will call me, ‘My husband,’ and no longer will you call me, ‘My Baal.’ For I will remove the names of the Ba’als from her mouth, and they shall be mentioned by name no more. And I will make for you a covenant on that day with the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the creeping things of the ground; and I will abolish the bow, the sword, and war from the land; and I will make you lie down in safety. And I will betroth you to me for ever; I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love, and in mercy. I will betroth you to me in faithfulness; and you shall know the LORD. “And in that day, says the LORD, I will answer the heavens and they shall answer the earth; and the earth shall answer the grain, the wine, and the oil, and they shall answer Jezreel; and I will sow him for myself in the land. And I will have pity on Not pitied, and I will say to Not my people, ‘You are my people’; and he shall say ‘Thou art my God.'”

–Hosea 2:14-23

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Christopher Howse is worried no breakthrough for divorced Christians will come at upcoming RC synod

What is the point of this world synod of Catholic bishops on the family that is starting in Rome on October 5, a week tomorrow?

Most talk in the papers and in the crabbed and febrile world of the internet has been about whether divorced people who remarry should receive Holy Communion. This matters, because Communion is the symbol and channel of a Christian’s spiritual relations with God. And yet Pope Francis, who, we have learnt, is no friend of laws as a substitute for ideals, says that this is not the point of the synod at all.

The Pope often speaks openly when he shares an aeroplane with journalists, and, on the way back from his pilgrimage to the Holy Land earlier this year, he said: “I have not been happy that so many people ”“ even church people, priests ”“ have said: ‘Ah, the synod will be about giving Communion to the divorced’.” His difficulty was that he “felt everything was being reduced to casuistry”

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Church History, Ethics / Moral Theology, Eucharist, History, Marriage & Family, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Pope Francis, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Sacramental Theology, Theology

(CT) U.S. Visited by Only Politician Ever Banned Over Religious Freedom Violations–Modi

[This week]…the only person ever banned by the United States because of alleged religious freedom violations””India’s newly-elected prime minister, Narendra Modi””will begin a four-day tour on American shores.

After Modi failed to prevent the riot deaths of 1,000 Muslims in 2002 while he was chief minister of the western state of Gujarat, the State Department leaned on a little-known provision in the International Religious Freedom Act that says foreign officials responsible for “severe violations of religious freedom” shouldn’t be admitted to America. The Wall Street Journal offers more details.

The visa restriction might have been permanent, but this summer Modi was elected to the most powerful political position in India. He’ll meet with President Obama and major business corporations during his visit from September 26-30. One American legal group filed suit against Modi this week, though the move is largely seen as symbolic, reports Reuters.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Asia, Foreign Relations, Globalization, India, Law & Legal Issues, Politics in General, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Violence

(Wash. Post) In Congo, trapped in violence and forgotten

The village in eastern Congo lies at the epicenter of one of Africa’s most brutal and longest-running wars. It is both military base and refugee camp, both killing field and sanctuary, a place woven from chaos and resilience. Civilians trapped in relentless violence struggle to live. Death arrives in many forms ”” guns, machetes, disease and hunger.

It is a war that has claimed an estimated 5 million lives, many from starvation, disease and other conflict-related causes, since 1998 ”” more casualties than the wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq combined, and more than any conflict since World War II. It is a war that the world’s largest and most expensive U.N. peacekeeping mission has failed to quell. The peacekeepers, heavily financed by Washington, are now engaged in their most ambitious effort in years to end the fighting.

And yet the war remains invisible to most outsiders, who have grown weary of the unending cycle of violence. Today, relief groups have trouble raising money to help Congo as more publicized upheavals in Syria, South Sudan and elsewhere grab the world’s attention.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Defense, National Security, Military, Poverty, Republic of Congo, Violence

Mozambique President Guebuza Urges Churches to Pray for Peaceful Campaign

Mozambican President Armando Guebuza on Sunday urged the country’s churches to pray that conflicts between supporters of rival political parties do not occur again during the fortnight left of the election campaign prior to the presidential and parliamentary elections of 15 October.

He was speaking in Maputo during the consecration of Carlos Matsinhe as the new bishop of the Anglican diocese of the Libombos. Matsinhe is the successor to the recently retired bishop, Dinis Sengulane, a man who has been prominent in efforts to secure peace in Mozambique.

“We invite the Anglican church and other churches to pray for the elections to be a moment of festivity and coexistence between brothers”, said Guebuza.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Mozambique, Politics in General, Religion & Culture

(KC Star) Decades in the making, church's family center a testament to faith, persistence

The Morningstar Youth and Family Life Center, a 13,000-square-foot facility and a $5.7 million project, is expected to open in a year. As speaker after speaker pointed out at the ceremony, the project is a real-life lesson to never abandon a dream.

Miles, pastor of Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church, is 69. How old was he when first began work to assemble property for the center?

“About 44,” Miles said, smiling.

Plans are for the center to serve about 200 people a day, including youths and seniors, with a wide range of programs and services including math, science and computer tutoring; jobs skills training; food and clothing programs; counseling; and sports programs.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Anthropology, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Theology