Daily Archives: October 4, 2014

At Your Service–A Pop Up Cathedral: Taking Faith On The Road

A pop up Cathedral will take faith on the road when it journeys through the towns and cities of the newest Church of England diocese here in West Yorkshire and the Dales and collects donations for some of its food banks.

Pop Up Cathedral is the brain child of Wakefield Cathedral. A mobile trailer, it was bought with a combination of local grants and supported with further funding from the Archbishop of York’s Youth Trust, to provide detached youth and outreach work at the Cathedral and for other churches across the new diocese.

It is run by Wakefield Cathedral’s mission and outreach team of Canon Tony Macpherson, Canon Missioner and Heidi Smith, Community Missioner, who are taking it on the road to serve in some of West Yorkshire’s towns and cities and collect donations for food banks along the way.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Archbishop of York John Sentamu, England / UK, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

(Evening Standard) Londoners diary: Blessed are the meek, bishop Chartres tells job-seekers

Anyone hoping for ecclesiastical preferment in London should have been at the launch last night of London Witness at the Bishop of London’s home, where the bishop, the Rt Rev Richard Chartres, revealed his approach to making appointments ”” never choose anyone who puts himself forward.

London Witness is a group of Anglicans committed to bringing a Christian perspective to London, and the bishop revealed that none of those present had volunteered their services. “You all had to be asked,” he said approvingly. “By definition, anyone who puts themselves forward would have been unsuitable. That’s my own philosophy when I’m making appointments.”

The bishop observed with relief that, unlike him, all the members of London Witness were spreading news of the CofE’s good work on social media. “I never read anything after 1649,” he confessed. “In many ways it makes you very avant garde”. Peculiar, because we were just thinking how similar Chartres’ philosophy was to Douglas Adams’s argument that it’s “a well-known fact that those people who most want to rule people are, ipso facto, those least suited to do it” ”” and we could have sworn Adams started writing the Hitchhiker’s Guide series later than 1648.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, England / UK, Religion & Culture, Urban/City Life and Issues

In the Ongoing General Theological Seminary Controversy, A Message from Dean Kurt H. Dunkle

To the beloveds of God’s church in the world

Some of you may be following the unfolding of various controversies surrounding The General Seminary of The Episcopal Church here in New York City and around me, it’s Dean and President. Until today, there were three main issues: (1) allegations against me personally, (2) faculty employment issues, and (3) overarching and intensely serious issues regarding the future of Christian theological education in America, in The Episcopal Church, and at General Seminary. While dutifully silent until now, I have felt for a while that I need to touch on all three.

But, this morning something much more serious emerged. It is about my support for our LGBT community and those loved by God around the world. My hubris in addressing this letter to all of God’s beloveds worldwide is because statements which may hurt one of us actually hurts all of us, wherever you live. I think that’s what Christian community is about.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Seminary / Theological Education, TEC Conflicts, Theology

Chris Seitz on "a heavy assault mounted from within Christian circles" on "marriage and its goods"

If we are going to reflect on a theme like “The Ethics of Sex, Marriage and Family,” and presume to be doing so on the basis of the canon of scripture, we must be prepared to accept a cardinal reality. To speak of Christian Ethics is to speak of scripture in action, in the lived life of Christian formation and catechesis. Increasingly, very few progressives dismiss the scriptural record on sex, marriage and family. Some of course still do. They are bold to proclaim that the biblical witness is not just wrong in its parts (Genesis 1-3 as ancient Hebrew musing, Paul as wrong or speaking about something else, Jesus as all loving and disinterested in a modern phenomenon like gayness, which exists in a timeframe the bible does not nor could ever be expected to comprehend). The Bible is wrong, outdated, or just not addressing the matter of the challenge of new understandings of sex and human thriving, altogether. If it gets things right, it does so accidentally or inferentially, like the proverbial blind hog finding an acorn.

I mention this right up front because, as with the early church, what we now see is something else: a heavy assault mounted from within Christian circles themselves on prior understandings of the estate of marriage and its goods. Not from cultural despisers or secularists, but from those who purport to argue that their new understanding is indeed scriptural after all. Many secular and religious proponents of same-sexuality had concluded earlier that marriage was a patriarchal invention that no card-carrying proponent of sexual liberation””gay or straight””ought to go near. Inside Christian circles, this has changed.

So alongside those dubious about scripture having anything to say, accidentally or properly, are those who argue that their new understanding of sexuality is somehow biblical after all. In this sense, the debate over marriage, sex and family is one in which both sides, or several sides, all appeal to scripture. That is, not unlike the early church examples just cited. So we must ask: What account of scripture is it that has been brought to bear on our present and older understandings of sex, marriage, and family. Because of its scale, depth, and complex two-testament character, Scripture is infinitely capable of producing multiple interpretations. Irenaeus used the image of a mosaic. One receives a gift of scripture with all its myriad pieces, and the goal of interpretation is to see the face of the king, Jesus Christ, when all the pieces are properly and proportionally assembled….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anthropology, Children, Christology, Ecclesiology, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Anglican Ink) Has Archbishop Welby buried the instruments of Anglican unity?

The Archbishop of Canterbury has claimed the authority to determine who is Anglican. In a wide ranging conversation with the Church of Ireland Gazette, the archbishop offered his appreciation of the ecclesiology of the Anglican Communion, placing his office in the center of the church’s polity.

He further stated he saw the Anglican Church in North America as an ecumenical partner, not a member church of the Anglican Communion.

While Archbishop Justin Welby’s comments about the ecclesial relationship between the Church of England and the ACNA break no new ground, his defense of his appointment of an ACNA priest to an honorary post in the Church of England by asserting the priest’s orders were valid as they were conveyed by the Episcopal Church of the USA raises the question of the validity of the ministerial orders conveyed by ACNA’s bishops.

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Posted in Uncategorized

The Audio Link to the Full Interview of Justin Welby by Canon Ian Ellis of the C of I Gazette

(Blog readers are asked to note that “the newspaper is editorially independent of the Church of Ireland, the views expressed in the newspaper, including editorial comment, not necessarily reflecting official Church of Ireland policy.”)–KSH.


The Anglican Communion, 00:00-02:22;

Anglicans/Episcopalians in North America, 02:22-04.45;

The Lambeth Conference, 04:45-05:40;

Payday lenders & Wonga, 05:40-08:33;

The Media, 08:33-10:00;

European Court of Human Rights & Human Rights issues, 10:00-13:07;

ISIL & Iraq situation, 13:07-17:10;

Northern Ireland political situation, 17:10-18:47;

Doubt in the Christian life, 18:47-end.

Read and listen to it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Anglican Provinces, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of Ireland, Ecclesiology, England / UK, Ireland, Media, Theology

(David Ould) Diocese of NW Australia Recognises ACNA as Anglicans

The Diocese of NW Australia, meeting in synod this weekend, passed the following motion,

That this synod:

welcomes the impending investiture of the Most Reverend Dr Foley Beach, the Archbishop of The Anglican Church in North America;

recognizes the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA) as a member church of the Anglican Communion, in full communion with Diocese of North West Australia; rejoices that the orthodox faith is proclaimed in word and deed through ACNA and its member churches…

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Anglican Church of Australia, Anglican Provinces, Ecclesiology, Theology

3 Jobs, a lot of Dreams, and the Fatal Consequences of a Dangerous Decision

She dreamed of the bustling streets of Los Angeles and the leafy towns of Pennsylvania. She dreamed of working two jobs, not three. She dreamed of sleeping, really sleeping, for six or seven hours at a stretch.

But dreams rarely pay the rent. So Ms. Fernandes worked three jobs, at three Dunkin’ Donuts stores in northern New Jersey, shuttling from Newark to Linden to Harrison and back. She often slept in her car ”” two hours here, three hours there ”” and usually kept the engine running, ready in an instant to start all over again.

The last day of her life was no different. She got off work at 6 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 25, and climbed into her 2001 Kia Sportage, officials from the Elizabeth Police Department said. She was dreaming again, this time about taking a break to celebrate a milestone with friends. But first, she told her boyfriend, Mr. Carter, during a brief cellphone conversation, she was going to take a nap.

Read the whole heart breaking tale.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Death / Burial / Funerals, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Parish Ministry, Psychology, Theology

Telegraph Animal Pictures of the Week for World Animal Day

Enjoy each one of them.

Posted in * General Interest, Animals, Photos/Photography

A Blessed and Happy World Animal Day to all Blog Readers!

World Animal Day was started in 1931 at a convention of ecologists in Florence as a way of highlighting the plight of endangered species. October 4 was chosen as World Animal Day as it is the Feast Day of St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals.

Read it all and check out the links.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, Animals, Church History, Globalization, History

The Canticle of the Sun for Saint Francis of Assisi's Feast Day

Most high, all powerful, all good Lord!
All praise is Yours, all glory, all honor, and all blessing.

To You, alone, Most High, do they belong.
No mortal lips are worthy to pronounce Your name.

Be praised, my Lord, through all Your creatures,
especially through my lord Brother Sun,
who brings the day; and You give light through him.
And he is beautiful and radiant in all his splendor!
Of You, Most High, he bears the likeness.

Be praised, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars;
in the heavens You have made them bright, precious and beautiful.
Be praised, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
and clouds and storms, and all the weather,
through which You give Your creatures sustenance.

Be praised, my Lord, through Sister Water;
she is very useful, and humble, and precious, and pure.

Be praised, my Lord, through Brother Fire,
through whom You brighten the night.
He is beautiful and cheerful, and powerful and strong.

Be praised, my Lord, through our sister Mother Earth,
who feeds us and rules us,
and produces various fruits with colored flowers and herbs.

Be praised, my Lord, through those who forgive for love of You;
through those who endure sickness and trial.

Happy those who endure in peace,
for by You, Most High, they will be crowned.

Be praised, my Lord, through our sister Bodily Death,
from whose embrace no living person can escape.
Woe to those who die in mortal sin!
Happy those she finds doing Your most holy will.
The second death can do no harm to them.

Praise and bless my Lord, and give thanks,
and serve Him with great humility.

–Found among many places here in Wisdom from Franciscan Italy: The Primacy of Love (John Hunt Publishing, 2011 Obooks version) by David Torkington

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Economics, Politics, Church History, Energy, Natural Resources, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Theology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Francis of Assisi

Most high, omnipotent, good Lord, grant unto thy people grace to renounce gladly the vanities of this world; that, following the way of blessed Francis, we may for love of thee delight in thy whole creation with perfectness of joy; 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 to Begin the Day

My God, my Father and Preserver, who of thy goodness hast watched over me during the past night, and brought me to this day, grant also that I may spend it wholly in the worship and service of thy most holy deity. Let me not think, or say, or do a single thing which tends not to thy service and submission to thy will, that thus all my actions may aim at thy glory and the salvation of my brethren, while they are taught by my example to serve thee. And as thou art giving light to this world for the purposes of external life by the rays of the sun, so enlighten my mind by the effulgence of thy Spirit, that he may guide me in the way of thy righteousness. To whatever purpose I apply my mind, may the end which I ever propose to myself be thy honour and service. May I expect all happiness from thy grace and goodness only. Let me not attempt any thing whatever that is not pleasing to thee.

Grant also, that while I labour for the maintenance of this life, and care for the things which pertain to food and raiment, I may raise my mind above them to the blessed and heavenly life which thou hast promised to thy children. Be pleased also, in manifesting thyself to me as the protector of my soul as well as my body, to strengthen and fortify me against all the assaults of the devil, and deliver me from all the dangers which continually beset us in this life. But seeing it is a small thing to have begun, unless I also persevere, I therefore entreat of thee, O Lord, not only to be my guide and director for this day, but to keep me under thy protection to the very end of life, that thus my whole course may be performed under thy superintendence. As I ought to make progress, do thou add daily more and more to the gifts of thy grace until I wholly adhere to thy Son Jesus Christ, whom we justly regard as the true Sun, shining constantly in our minds. In order to my obtaining of thee these great and manifold blessings, forget, and out of thy infinite mercy, forgive my offences, as thou hast promised that thou wilt do to those who call upon thee in sincerity.

(Ps. 143:8.)””Grant that I may hear thy voice in the morning since I have hoped in thee. Show me the way in which I should walk, since I have lifted up my soul unto thee. Deliver me from my enemies, O Lord, I have fled unto thee. Teach me to do thy will, for thou art my God. Let thy good Spirit conduct me to the land of uprightness.

–John Calvin (1509-1564)

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son. The more I called them, the more they went from me; they kept sacrificing to the Ba’als, and burning incense to idols. Yet it was I who taught E’phraim to walk, I took them up in my arms; but they did not know that I healed them. I led them with cords of compassion, with the bands of love, and I became to them as one, who eases the yoke on their jaws, and I bent down to them and fed them. They shall return to the land of Egypt, and Assyria shall be their king, because they have refused to return to me. The sword shall rage against their cities, consume the bars of their gates, and devour them in their fortresses. My people are bent on turning away from me; so they are appointed to the yoke, and none shall remove it. How can I give you up, O E’phraim! How can I hand you over, O Israel! How can I make you like Admah! How can I treat you like Zeboi’im! My heart recoils within me, my compassion grows warm and tender. I will not execute my fierce anger, I will not again destroy E’phraim; for I am God and not man, the Holy One in your midst, and I will not come to destroy.

–Hosea 11:1-9

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(C Post) Rachel Burger–Millennials Still Want to Marry

The Pew Research Center recently released a study claiming that a quarter of Millennials will never get married, and those that will won’t get married until they’re older. While it’s true that Millennials are waiting longer to get married, the data ignores generational traits driving young people to tie the knot.

The statistics are grim. In 1960, only 9 percent of adults older than 25 had never married. As of 2012, that number has increased to 20 percent. In 1960, the average marrying age for men was 23-years-old and for women was 20-years-old. Census data from 2012 shows that the average age of marriage has jumped to 29 for men and 27 for women. Over half of never-married adults say they would like to marry someday (53 percent), a third (32 percent) are unsure, and 13 percent say they would never like to marry. These statistics lead Pew to conclude, “When today’s young adults reach their mid-40s to mid-50s, a record high share (25 percent) is likely to have never been married.”

However, Pew’s assumptions ignore core truths about Millennials’ views towards marriage and their life-long chances of getting married.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Anthropology, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sociology, Theology, Young Adults

Joe Nocera on thinking outside the Box–Paralysis Isn’t Inevitable

One of the hardest things for us to do is to envision a future that is different from the present. For instance, we live in an age of paralyzed politics, so it is hard, in the here and now, to imagine what could change that. A second example: It is difficult to think of a scenario where federal gun legislation could be passed over the objections of the National Rifle Association. And a third: Income inequality has been the trend for some three decades; doesn’t it look as if it will always be that way?

What prompts these thoughts are two papers that landed on my desk recently. Although they tackle very different issues, they have one thing in common: They imagine a future that breaks from the present path.

The first is a draft of a speech given earlier this month at TEDMED by Daniel Webster, the director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research. (TEDMED is associated with TED Talks.) The second is an article in the latest edition of the Harvard Business Review by Roger Martin, the former dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Economy, History, House of Representatives, Law & Legal Issues, Office of the President, Politics in General, Psychology, Senate, The U.S. Government, Violence