Daily Archives: February 25, 2016

A [London] Times profile of Whitechapel Bell Foundry, in continuous operation since 1570

It’s an improbable sight, but the Whitechapel Bell Foundry still stands on east London’s busy Whitechapel Road, an island in an area all but obliterated in the Second World War. Moreover, it is a business that has been fighting for survival for years, centuries even, and in a high-tech, ever more competitive world is still going strong. It’s no more than what you’d expect from a company that has been in continuous operation since 1570 and claims the title of Britain’s oldest manufacturer.

Alan Hughes’s family has run what is one of only two remaining bell foundries in the UK for four generations. “In its early years,” he says, “there was very little by way of continuity of ownership. The company changed hands frequently, usually staying with one family for just one generation.”

He can be forgiven for having little sympathy for businesses that have seen profits crumble because of something as recent as the arrival of the internet. His sector peaked in the 18th century, shrank and then levelled off again before sinking into steady decline for the past hundred or so years.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Theology

(NYT Op-ed) David Brooks–Three Views of Marriage

It’s probably best to use all three lenses when entering into or living in a marriage. But there are differences among them. The psychological lens emphasizes that people don’t change much over a lifetime. Especially after age 30, people may get a little more conscientious and agreeable, but improvements are modest.

In the romantic view, the heart is transformed by love, at any age. In the moral view, spiritual transformation ”” over a lifetime, not just over two passionate years ”” is the whole point. People have great power to go against their own natures and uplift their spouses, by showing a willingness to change, by supporting their journey from an old crippled self to a new more beautiful self.

The three lenses are operating at different levels: personality, emotions, the level of the virtues and the vices. The first two lenses are very common in our culture ”” in bookstores, songs and in movies. But the moral lens, with its view of marriage as a binding moral project, is less common. Maybe that’s one of the reasons the quality of the average marriage is in decline.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Anthropology, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Philosophy, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Theology, Young Adults

(Wash Post Op-ed) Sarah Wright–Why it’s time to stop glorifying marriage

In an era when the average American now spends the majority of his or her life unmarried, it is time to stop glorifying and privileging marriage to the total exclusion of all other patterns of family formation, caregiving relationship, living arrangement and property ownership. Despite its ubiquity, marriage is exactly “one size does not fit all.” Yet at the same time, the high price of being single in the United States is a well-known fact of life. What’s a thinking person to do?

For the majority of children now born outside of marriage, (estimated at roughly half of births today), the ramifications of growing up in an unmarried household are generally immediate and negative: Increased poverty is all but guaranteed. At the same time, promoting marriage at taxpayer expense to solve this problem has been a colossal boondoggle. For starters, there was little demand from its target audience, not to mention that marriage has a nearly 50 percent failure rate. (The fact that marriage doubles as an ex post facto welfare program for much of today’s middle class and is nothing short of a luxury good for the upper crust reflects growing income inequality.) Rather than reinforcing these economic divides, family law and social welfare policy would do well to adapt to the rise of nontraditional family forms in which the spousal pair is no longer the core of family life.

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

(CEN) Christian groups are split over planned June EU Referendum

AS THE EU Referendum was officially announced on Saturday rival Christian groups have entered the debate setting out their cases.

Co-Chair of Christians for Britain, Giles Fraser, Tweeted: The ”˜In campaign seems to be little more than we’d be a few quid better off. Tawdry. Sovereignty and democracy shouldn’t be for sale.”

The ecumenical ”˜Christians4Britain’ website, launched earlier this month, says it is a cross-party campaign representing British Christians who believe an EU exit would be better for Britain.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Economy, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Europe, Foreign Relations, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Theology

A Church Times article: Independent review to shed light on Church’s handling of Peter Ball case

The priest allegedly sent a report containing evidence of abuse he had discovered to Lord Carey and said that Bishop Ball had agreed to live quietly in a French convent.

Lord Carey has denied any knowledge of a Church- or Establishment-led attempt to cover up the crimes or intervene in the police’s investigation. Ultimately, Bishop Ball was given a caution for one charge of gross indecency and lived for years in a cottage rented from the Duchy of Cornwall, before a second investigation in 2012 revealed the full extent of his crimes.

Dame Moira, who was previously director of social services for the borough of Kensington and Chelsea, and then chief executive of Camden Council until 2011, is expected to complete her review in approximately 12 months.

While her review does not have statutory powers to require anyone to give evidence, Dame Moira said that she expected everyone within the Church to co-operate fully. “Our remit is to independently set out for survivors and the public what actually happened,” she said on Wednesday.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Children, Church History, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Violence

(C of E Comm Blog) Edward Mason–Preparing for a low-carbon future

We’ve been at the heart of the ”˜Aiming for A’ engagement initiative, which successfully filed shareholder resolutions at the BP and Shell AGMs last year. These companies were keen to work with us and our partners, and recommended that shareholders approve the resolutions. The companies are now legally required to step up their reporting of their strategic response to the challenges ”“ and opportunities ”“ posed to their businesses by climate change. This was an excellent example of what investors and companies can achieve when they work together. On the back of similar engagement, Aiming for A has filed more resolutions in the UK mining sector for this year’s AGMs which have been received by the companies in the same spirit.

Sadly, not all companies are responding constructively to the urgent need to mitigate climate change. We’ve been working with the New York State pension fund in the US to file a resolution at ExxonMobil in the United States. Rather than working with us to provide the reporting that institutional investors require, Exxon have gone to the US regulator ”“ the Securities and Exchange Commission ”“ to try to get the resolution struck off so that shareholders do not get the opportunity vote on it at Exxon’s AGM later this year. This week New York State have written to the SEC to ask them to deny this request, and to make sure that shareholders can indicate to Exxon’s board their desire for fuller reporting on the implications of climate change policy.

We are extremely disappointed that even after the Paris climate change agreement ExxonMobil has contested the relevance of the resolution we have co-filed.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Energy, Natural Resources, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Foreign Relations, Globalization, Law & Legal Issues, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Stock Market, Theology

(CT) Paul Putz–The Humble Coach Behind Celebrity Christianity

On Thursday I saw the news on my Twitter timeline that McClanen had died.

A historian is supposed to keep a critical distance from his or her subjects of study, and I like to think that I follow that standard. Yet when I saw the news, I couldn’t help feeling a sense of loss for a man I never met, a man I know only through dusty letters written long ago.

When I first began my research on the early history of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, I had no affinity for McClanen””I barely knew who he was. At first he seemed too earnest, too persistent. In his letters he badgered, he pestered, he shared too much information too soon. Yet the more that I encountered McClanen in the archives, the more I grew intrigued by his combination of intensity, sincerity, and humility. There is a trace of irony in the latter, for McClanen’s fame today (such as it is) rests on the fact that he founded an organization explicitly built around the idea of celebrity, salesmanship, and publicity.

“If athletes can endorse shaving cream, razor blades, and cigarettes,” he said. “Surely they can endorse the Lord.”

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Church History, History, Religion & Culture, Sports, Theology

A Prayer to Begin the Day from Saint Anselm

Grant, O Lord, that we may cleave to thee without parting, worship thee without wearying, serve thee without failing; faithfully seek thee, happily find thee, and for ever possess thee, the one only God, blessed, world without end.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Lent, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Bible Readings

In thee, O LORD, do I take refuge; let me never be put to shame! In thy righteousness deliver me and rescue me; incline thy ear to me, and save me! Be thou to me a rock of refuge, a strong fortress, to save me, for thou art my rock and my fortress.

–Psalm 71:1-3

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Recent Key Entries 2016

+ GAFCON Chairman’s October 2016 Letter (October 31, 2016 at 11:31 pm)
+ Evangelicals write to CofE Bishops about their plans to depart from the faith (October 17, 2016 at 2:37 pm)
+ Communiqué from the 6th Global South Conference (October 8, 2016 at 8:15 am)

+ Scottish Anglican Network statement on amendment of Scottish Episcopal Church’s marriage canon (June 12, 2016 at 3:58 pm)
+ Diocese of Akure, Nigeria dissociates from the Diocese of Liverpool over TEC SSB Bishop appointment (June 6, 2016 at 12:47 pm)
+ Archbishop Okoh’s GAFCON Chairman’s June 2016 Pastoral Letter to the Anglican faithful (June 4, 2016 at 8:00 am)


Posted in * Admin, Featured (Sticky)

TEC PB Michael Curry Updates the situation of the 3 staff placed on administrative Leave

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC)

Archbishop Justin Welby consecrates new Bishops of Sherborne and Dunwich

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, consecrated the new Bishops of Sherborne and Dunwich today during a ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

The Ven Karen Gorham was consecrated as the Bishop of Sherborne and the Revd Canon Dr Mike Harrison was consecrated as the Bishop of Dunwich.

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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), CoE Bishops, England / UK, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture