Daily Archives: June 8, 2016

Leader of the Scottish Episcopal Church says marriage vote ”˜risks church split’ w C of E

The leader of the Scottish Episcopal Church has conceded that a vote on same-sex marriage this week risks putting it at odds with the remainder of the Anglican Communion.

The Most Rev David Chillingworth, Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld and Dunblane, said the potential split was “a very serious issue” for the Scottish church but added that all sides were committed to maintaining unity.

Members of the church will be asked on Friday to consider a change to canon law, which currently states that marriage must be between a man and a woman, at its General Synod.

Read it all from the (London) Times (requires subscription).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), Ecclesiology, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Scottish Episcopal Church, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Bloomberg) Todd Buchholz-Five Reasons Why America Is in Danger of Collapse

Author of “The Price of Prosperity,” Todd Buchholz, discusses his book explaining why America may be in danger of collapse. He speaks on “Bloomberg Markets.”

Watch it all.

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

(IHE) A Review of Robert Pogue Harrison's new book, 'Juvenescence: A Cultural History of Our Age'

Harrison’s thinking develops in dialogue with Hannah Arendt ”“ among many others, though her concept of natality, which I sketched earlier, seems especially important for him in Juvenescence. We are born into a particular society that exists before we do, and will presumably continue to do so for some while afterward, but that isn’t eternal or static. It leaves its mark on us (and we on it, to whatever degree). We are affected by its changes.

More to the point we are part of the changes, even when we are incapable of recognizing them. (Especially then, in fact.) It’s possible to get some perspective on things — to challenge, or at least evaluate, what we’ve come to accept and expect from the world ”“ through learning about the past, or formulating questions, or absorbing stories and other cultural expressions of other people.

Harrison coins the expression heterochronicity to point out the reality the present is never pure or self-contained. The people around us are being pushed and pulled by senses of the world (including memories and expectations) that can be profoundly different from our own, and from one another. Heterochronicity is the matrix of generational conflict, but Juvenescence explores it through readings of Antigone and King Lear rather than the contrasts between boomers and millennials.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Books, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Theology

Make religion on TV more like Match of the Day, says Archbishop of Canterbury

Broadcasters should give religion the same depth of analysis they provide for sport, the Archbishop of Canterbury has claimed.

The Rt Rev Justin Welby called for the “promotion of religious literacy” to be written as a specific duty into the new BBC charter.

Faith issues should be treated as seriously as sport and drama on television, he argued.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Media, Religion & Culture

(Bloomberg) The Brutal Journey Back to Work for Millions of Americans

…63-year-old [Phyllis Swenson of] Fairfax, Virginia, resident is among millions of Americans who haven’t rebounded with the improving U.S. economy. Part-time work at Vienna Presbyterian doesn’t pay all her bills, and almost a year of futile job-hunting has left her desperate.

“Recovery?” she scoffs. “How are we recovering?”

The labor market has staged a strong comeback: Unemployment is 4.7 percent, down from 9.5 percent when the economy started expanding in June 2009. Employers have added an average 150,000 jobs a month this year, though May slowed to just 38,000. The rate at which people quit, a handy measure of job mobility, is trending up.
Yet some Americans still feel a deep sense of betrayal. Their journey back to meaningful work has been brutal — if they even arrived — leaving them with depleted savings, increased debt, homes lost to lenders and for some, long searches that stripped away their most valuable possession: self-esteem. Many who did find jobs now earn less, with fewer benefits.

This has helped fuel Donald Trump’s improbable rise and Bernie Sanders’s strong challenge to Hillary Clinton. Thousands cheer at rallies when the Republican front-runner claims he’ll put people back to work and the Democratic contender rails against income inequality.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Anthropology, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Politics in General, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, Theology

Roland Allen in his own words on Mission and Saint Paul

In little more than ten years St. Paul established the Church in four provinces of the Empire, Galatia, Macedonia, Achaia and Asia. Before AD 47 there were no churches in these provinces; in AD 57 St. Paul could speak as if his work there was done, and could plan extensive tours into the far west without anxiety lest the churches which he had founded might perish in his absence for want of his guidance and support.

The work of the Apostle during these ten years can therefore be treated as a unity. Whatever assistance he may have received from the preaching of others, it is unquestioned that the establishment of the churches in these provinces was really his work. In the pages of the New Testament he, and he alone, stands forth as their founder. And the work which he did was really a completed work. So far as the foundation of the churches is concerned, it is perfectly clear that the writer of the Acts intends to represent St. Paul’s work as complete. The churches were really established. Whatever disasters fell upon them in later years, whatever failure there was, whatever ruin, that failure was not due to any insufficiency or lack of care and completeness in the Apostle’s teaching or organization. When he left them he left them because his work was fully accomplished.

This is truly an astonishing fact. That churches should be founded so rapidly, so securely, seems to us today, accustomed to the difficulties, the uncertainties, the failures, the disastrous relapses of our own missionary work, almost incredible. Many missionaries in later days have received a larger number of converts than St. Paul; many have preached over a wider area than he; but none have so established churches. We have long forgotten that such things could be. We have long accustomed ourselves to accept it as an axiom of missionary work that converts in a new country must be submitted to a very long probation and training, extending over generations before they can be expected to be able to stand alone. Today if a man ventures to suggest that there may be something in the methods by which St. Paul attained such wonderful results worthy of our careful attention, and perhaps of our imitation, he is in danger of being accused of revolutionary tendencies.

–Roland Allen, Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours; A Study of The Church In The Four Provinces, Chapter One

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Missions, Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Roland Allen

Almighty God, by whose Spirit the Scriptures were opened to thy servant Roland Allen, so that he might lead many to know, live and proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ: Give us grace to follow his example, that the variety of those to whom we reach out in love may receive thy saving Word and witness in their own languages and cultures to thy glorious Name; through Jesus Christ, thy Word made flesh, who livest and reignest with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day from A W Tozer

Oh God we pray Thy blessing upon us. Oh, Lamb of God we love Thee so, we would with Thee life’s journey go, and we pray Thou wilt help us this morning, hurt and humbled by our own unworthiness in the knowledge of, and taunting memories of sins committed in the past, but by Thy grace at the moment we have no wish to sin. We wish only to love Thee and live as we should, so please help us now for Jesus’ sake.

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

From the Morning Bible Readings

Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, who alone does wondrous things. Blessed be his glorious name for ever; may his glory fill the whole earth! Amen and Amen!

–Psalm 72:18-19

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

[Cayman News] Local and regional LGBT prejudices top bill at conference

The conference, which is now in its seventh year, was founded by Professor Bee Scherer, director of the INCISE research centre at Canterbury Christ Church University. He said, “Local activists approached us last year at the QP6 conference in Canterbury with the view of bringing QP to the Caribbean region; after the success of QP in South America (Rio 2012, Quito 2014) we agreed to support them.”

The conference has attracted criticism from conservative political and religious groups who are opposing LGBTIQ rights and equality, the organisers stated this weekend in a press release.

Although one of the key note speakers is an Anglican bishop, activists said it was sad to see how some churches have tried to boycott the conference rather than engage in a democratic dialogue with experts from all over the world who are coming to the Cayman Islands to share their knowledge and expertise with the public.

“I hope that we will see a fruitful dialogue and not just picketing and shouting,” said Scherer. “We have invited the Rt Hon Dr Alan Wilson, Bishop of Buckingham, as one of the keynote speakers…

Read it all

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

[Seattle Globalist] The Jungle shows Seattle’s not immune to global poverty

When I first started traveling to poor countries as a young journalist I was most shocked by the slums.

Tarp cities and shantytowns in Asia, Africa and Latin America ”” often butted up against wealthy neighborhoods and sleek high-rises ”” stood out to me as symbols of the distance between the United States and the “developing world.”

But that distance has shrunk in Seattle.

Yes, we’ve had a large homeless population here for as long as I can remember. But the now-ubiquitous knots of tents on traffic medians, the appearance of homeless encampments in neighborhoods and the growth of “The Jungle” alongside I-5 have shown me our city is not immune to extreme poverty ”” or outrageous disparity of wealth.

And nothing brought that point home quite like visiting “The Jungle” alongside an Anglican Bishop from South Sudan..

Read it all

Posted in * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A.

[Fr Dale Matson] Contending For The Faith

..The most important thing for us is not what happens but how we respond to what happens. If our legal case is not heard, do we respond with righteous indignation or like our Lord from the cross? Forgive them for they know not what they do. And if they get the property, what will come of it? I sometimes smile when I think about what happened when the Philistines captured the Ark Of The Covenant. The property has been a blessing to us like the Ark was a blessing to Israel. Like the Ark, the property could become a curse to those who may capture it.

The author of the spirit of the ages is Satan who is the ruler of this world and this age. As a church our marching orders remain the same against the spirit of this age. Preach the Good News of Jesus Christ. “O God, from whom all good proceeds: Grant that by your inspiration we may think those things that are right, and by your merciful guiding may do them”. Lord, with Your inspiration, may we help others come into the light of Your Truth. Amen

Read it all

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: San Joaquin

A Helpful Corrective to the Present Political Headlines from Eugene Peterson

This world is no friend to grace”¦The world is protean: each generation has the world to deal with in a new form. World is an atmosphere, a mood. It is nearly as hard for a sinner to recognize the world’s temptations as it is for a fish to discover impurities in the water. There is a sense, a feeling, that things aren’t right, that the environment is not whole, but just what it is eludes analysis. We know that the spiritual atmosphere in which we live erodes faith, dissipates hope and corrupts love, but it is hard to put our finger on what is wrong”¦.

People submerged in a culture swarming with lies and malice feel as if they were drowning in it: they can trust nothing they hear, depend on no one they meet. Such dissatisfaction with the world as it is is preparation for traveling in the way of Christian discipleship. The dissatisfaction, coupled with a longing for peace and truth, can set us on a pilgrim path of wholeness in God.

Read it all (with our thanks to TS).

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anthropology, Christology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Theology, Theology: Holy Spirit (Pneumatology), Theology: Scripture

Church of England Discussion Paper on Welfare Released

A discussion paper ‘Thinking Afresh About Welfare’ has been released today by the Church of England.

The paper, by Rev Dr Malcolm Brown, Director of the Mission and Public Affairs Division of Archbishops’ Council, was endorsed by the May meeting of the House of Bishops as a discussion document.

Read it all and follow the link for the full paper.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Personal Finance, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Theology