Daily Archives: January 25, 2015

A Rare bird of prey–the crested caracara–turns up in Lowcountry, South Carolina

The bird in the pine tree just didn’t look like a red-tailed hawk. It didn’t look like any native raptor. But it sure made itself at home.

When the vultures swooped in for feeding recently at the Center for Birds of Prey, the crested caracara dropped down, too.

Staff and visitors were wowed. The once-a-week “vulture restaurant” feeding exhibit can draw any number of raptors ”” hawks, eagles and the like. But the crested caracara is normally found in places like Mexico. It isn’t been seen in the United States much north of the Everglades.

Read it all and you really must see the picture.

Posted in * General Interest, * South Carolina, Animals

Wonderfully cute nbc piece on some dogs riding in motorcycle sidecars-they wear Doggles -really!

The first time he put a sidecar on his motorcycle, JD Whittaker was in Egypt, carting around radio equipment for the Air Force during the Cold War. When he got home, he built one for his family.

“Kids grow up and, of course, they want to bring their dog,” said Whittaker, one of 18 riders and their dogs featured in “Sit. Stay. Ride: America’s Sidecar Dogs,” a Kickstarter-funded documentary. “When the kids are gone, all you’ve got left is the dog.”

Read and watch it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Animals, Children, Marriage & Family, Movies & Television, Travel

Charleston Southern has spread faith to students and beyond for 50 years now

Rick Brewer moved to town as a teen in 1969. His dad was a pastor, and they’d go watch sports events at what was Baptist College at Charleston.

Back then, the North Charleston campus was a 400-acre stretch with a few buildings, gravel roads and not much else. In the middle of nowhere.

“It’s a lot prettier now,” Brewer says, grinning.

The school was born 50 years ago this year after a group of Christian men saw a need for a Christian college south of the Baptist-heavy Upstate.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Education, Religion & Culture, Young Adults

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O God, who art the God of peace, mercifully grant that, as much as lieth in us, we may live at peace with all men; and if our outward peace be broken, yet do thou preserve peace in our hearts; through him who is the Prince of peace, Jesus Christ our Lord.

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place which he was to receive as an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was to go. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. For he looked forward to the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. By faith Sarah herself received power to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she considered him faithful who had promised. Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born descendants as many as the stars of heaven and as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.
These all died in faith, not having received what was promised, but having seen it and greeted it from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.

–Hebrews 11:8-16

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Hundreds of Ethiopian Christians celebrate at Liverpool Anglican Cathedral

Hundreds of Ethiopians made a pilgrimage to Liverpool to mark a 2,000-year-old festival.

Followers of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church descended on Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral to honour the Timkat tradition.

The festival celebrates Jesus’s baptism in the River Jordan with a 24-hour spectacular of singing, chanting and prayer.

One of the highlights of the celebration is the parading of the Tabot ”“ replicas of the tablet of stone on which the 10 commandments were inscribed.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Ethiopia, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry

”˜Naked’ Hunley revealing Civil War sub’s last secrets

Clemson University scientists have spent the past four months scraping away a heavy layer of encrusted sand, sediment and shell from the hull of the Civil War submarine that built up over the 136 years it lay hidden beneath the Atlantic floor.

Now, for the first time in more than 150 years, the Hunley’s bare skin is visible. And its iron hull doesn’t look that much older than, say, the Cold War-era sub Clamagore.

In fact, the results of the Hunley’s deconcretion so far are picture-perfect, which means the sub looks exactly as artist Conrad Wise Chapman depicted it in an 1863 painting.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * South Carolina, Defense, National Security, Military, History

Rifts Between U.S. and Nigeria Impeding Fight Against Boko Haram

Relations between American military trainers and specialists advising the Nigerian military in the fight against Boko Haram are so strained that the Pentagon often bypasses the Nigerians altogether, choosing to work instead with security officials in the neighboring countries of Chad, Cameroon and Niger, according to defense officials and diplomats.

Major rifts like these between the Nigerian and American militaries have been hampering the fight against Boko Haram militants as they charge through northern Nigeria, razing villages, abducting children and forcing tens of thousands of people to flee.

Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to travel to Nigeria on Sunday to meet with the candidates in Nigeria’s presidential elections, and the Pentagon says that the Nigerian Army is still an important ally in the region ”” vital to checking Boko Haram before it transforms into a larger, and possibly more transnational, threat.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Ethics / Moral Theology, Foreign Relations, Nigeria, Politics in General, Terrorism, Theology

Katharine Jefferts Schori–The Challenges and Opportunity of Women in Religious Leadership

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Presiding Bishop, Women

Al Mohler–Downton Abbey: Do Americans Really Know what they are Watching when they view it?

…most viewers are likely unaware of what they are actually seeing. They are not merely watching an historical drama, they are witnessing the passing of a world. And that larger story, inadequately portrayed within Downton Abbey, is a story that should not be missed. That story is part of our own story as well. It is the story of the modern age arriving with revolutionary force, and with effects that continue to shape our own world.

Downton Abbey is set in the early decades of the twentieth century. Though by season four King George V is on the throne, the era is still classically Edwardian. And the era associated with King Edward VII is the era of the great turn in British society. The early decades of the twentieth century witnessed a great transformation in England and within the British Empire. The stable hierarchies of Downton Abbey grew increasingly unstable. Britain, which had been overwhelmingly a rural nation until the last decade of the nineteenth century, became increasingly urban. A transformation in morals changed the very character of the nation, and underlying it all was a great surge of secularization that set the stage for the emergence of the radically secular nation that Britain has become.

Viewers should note the almost complete absence of Christianity from the storyline. The village vicar is an occasional presence, and church ceremonies have briefly been portrayed. But Christianity as a belief system and a living faith is absent””as is the institutional presence of the Church of England.

Political life is also largely absent, addressed mainly as it directly affects the Crawleys and their estate. This amounts to a second great omission.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Children, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Marriage & Family, Movies & Television, Religion & Culture, Theology

(CSM) Welcome to preschool: Time to enroll for next year

Now, three weeks into my son’s preschool career and we are already jockeying for a position next year. I’ve spent three paychecks from my part-time job, plus multiple hours of work-at-home time to get the necessary forms filled out and notarized so he can stay in the school.

Earlier this week, a friend dropped off her son’s registration packet with me to hold on to for registration day, since she will be out of town. I asked her how this whole registration thing will go down.

She told me that moms start lining up at 9 a.m. My eyes glazed over. Now I’m starting the registration process again. I am not a stay-at-home-mom, I’m an agent.

Of course, it could be worse. I could be paying for both school AND an admissions coach, who helps parents navigate getting into the best preschools in Manhattan, which cost upwards of $40K in tuition.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anthropology, Children, Economy, Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Personal Finance, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Goodluck Jonathan Promises Peace as 15 Die in Northeast Nigeria Raid

Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan promised to restore peace to the country’s northeast on his re-election campaign trail, a day after suspected Boko Haram militants raided a village, killing 15 people.

“I am promising the whole of you that we shall surely end this insurgency,” Jonathan said at Murtala Ramat Square in the Borno state capital of Maiduguri. “We will surely stop Boko Haram and return Borno to the path of peace.”

About three miles (4.8 kilometers) from Maiduguri, suspected Boko Haram militants raided the village of Kambari on Friday, killing the village leader, at least two children and 12 others, said a vigilante leader Hassan Ibrahim by phone from Maiduguri. Jonathan, who is seeking re-election next month, didn’t mention the attack.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Nigeria, Politics in General, Terrorism