Posted by Kendall Harmon

The 2018 Lambeth Conference has been cancelled. The precarious state of the Anglican Communion has led the Archbishop of Canterbury to postpone indefinitely the every ten year meeting of the bishops of the Anglican Communion.

A spokesman for Archbishop Justin Welby told Anglican Ink that as the archbishop had not yet met with each of the primates of the communion, he would not be commenting on the news. Since his installation last year, the Archbishop of Canterbury has travelled extensively and plans on visiting the 37 other provinces of the Anglican Communion within the first 18 months of his term of office.

News of the cancellation was made public by the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori on 23 Sept 2014. In response to a question from the Bishop of Rochester, the Rt. Rev. Prince Singh, who asked if money was being set aside to fund the Episcopal Church’s participation in the 2018 meeting, the Presiding Bishop told the Fall Meeting of the House of Bishops gathered in Taipei, Taiwan, that she had been told by Archbishop Welby the meeting had been cancelled.

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Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: Latest NewsArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby

September 30, 2014 at 8:10 am - 21 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

This post is sticky look for new entries below

For more info: PraytoendEbola website and #PraytoendEbola and Pray to End Ebola on Facebook. Lent & Beyond is posting daily Ebola Crisis Prayers.


SIM, a Christian mission organization which has been on the frontlines of the fight against Ebola in West Africa has called for a special week of intercessory prayer, urging Christians around the world to join together in prayer against the Ebola outbreak that is ravaging West Africa. Here is an excerpt from their exhortation to prayer:

The fight against Ebola in West Africa has been going on since the beginning of 2014. As the final quarter of the year approaches, the spread of this deadly disease is escalating out of control. The infection rate and death toll continue to rise; hundreds of health workers serving on the front lines to fight the disease have been taken by it; and the resources brought to bear still pale in comparison to the desperate needs. What seems to us to be a desperate situation is not impossible for God. May our prayers be heard and used by God to accomplish the impossible.

Therefore, as brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ, let us join together around the world for a full week of focused prayer beginning September 29 through October 5. Our desire is for prayers to be raised continually on behalf of those infected and affected by the Ebola virus, for the sick and dying, for the courageous health workers, for grieving families, for pastors trying to serve their churches and communities, for government officials and decision makers who formulate policies and responses, for protection for those working in educating communities, and for all those waking up each day to the devastation of Ebola.

Though we are troubled, we do not despair. Though we grieve, we are not without great hope. For two millennia, the Church has prioritized the sick and marginalized. We are called to do no less today.

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Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer* International News & CommentaryAfricaGuineaLiberiaSierra Leone

September 28, 2014 at 5:47 am - 7 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

This entry is sticky. Look below for new posts.

To the Faithful of the Global Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans and friends
from Archbishop Eliud Wabukala, Primate of Kenya and Chairman of the GAFCON Primates’ Council

September 23, 2014
Many of us were also present last October for GAFCON 2013 and I have encouraged people to think of the Divine Conference as ‘Continuing GAFCON’. In the Nairobi Commitment and Communiqué, we stated our intention to become much more than a big conference every five years. As long as the Great Commission is at risk through the promotion and toleration of false teaching and immorality in the Anglican Communion, we must have ‘Continuing GAFCON.’

and
AMiE is authorised by the GAFCON Primates to work within and, where necessary, outside the structures of the Church of England as a missionary society. In my message of greeting to the conference I said ‘We understand the challenges that faithful Anglicans face in England. At GAFCON 2013 here in Nairobi we recognised that the focus of the struggle for biblical faithfulness has shifted from North America to England. The temptation to dilute the message of Jesus Christ and compromise with the surrounding culture is strong, so it is vital for the gospel in England, and also for the world, that you continue as a beacon to the revealed truth of the Scriptures. The salvation of people from hell is at stake. So nothing could be more important.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalGlobal South Churches & PrimatesGAFCON II 2013

September 25, 2014 at 6:31 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

“By his Christian conviction, character, conduct, confession and competence, he has exhibited commendable Christian stewardship and now today, the Primate, on behalf of All Anglican faithful nationwide and in conformity with cherished biblical counsel and Christian heritage, has rolled that our beloved Servant leader be conferred with the PRIMATIAL Award of Excellence in Christian Stewardship to the glory of God and in praise and thanksgiving to God for His gift to us in the Church of Nigeria.”

With the above statement, the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) led by the Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of the Anglican, the Most Rev. Nicholas Okoh yesterday presented its highest award to President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. The award is the highest be conferred on an individual for service to humanity and to God.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of Nigeria* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryAfricaNigeria

October 1, 2014 at 8:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics looks into its crystal ball, it sees an aging population in need of care and a construction industry still rebounding from the Great Recession. In the decade from 2012 to 2022, the fastest growth in U.S. employment will take place in the health care, health care support, construction, and personal care fields. These four categories are expected to account for more than a third—about 6.6 million—of all new jobs.

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Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeLabor/Labor Unions/Labor Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

October 1, 2014 at 7:30 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Nearly two months on since the US began air strikes against Islamic State (IS) positions in northern Iraq, there are signs that the militants are adapting to the new reality.

Witnesses and tribal sources in IS-controlled areas have told Reuters news agency of a drop in the number of militant checkpoints and fighters using mobile phones less, apparently to avoid being targeted by air raids.

Reuters also reported that militants have been seen to ditch conspicuous convoys of armoured vehicles in favour of motorcycles.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureViolence* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, MilitaryTerrorism* International News & CommentaryMiddle EastIraqSyria* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsIslam* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

October 1, 2014 at 7:01 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The time has come when, as a society, we say that those who are abused are never at fault. In the Church of England, the issue is known as ‘the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults’. It is not simply a question of children. Adults who have been the survivors of previous abuse when they were younger, or who are in a vulnerable position because of pastoral need, are no more to blame than anyone else. They are the objects of a terrible wrong. And I pledge that any allegation brought to the Church will be taken seriously and rigorously investigated.

I long for the day when not only in the institutions of the Church, but also among every Christian, we show that we understand that those who have things done to them are never the ones to be blamed.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchChildrenLaw & Legal IssuesMarriage & FamilyPsychologyReligion & CultureSexualityViolence* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

October 1, 2014 at 6:28 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

How contagious is the virus?
Officials have emphasized that people are only infectious if they have symptoms of Ebola. There is no risk of transmission from people who have been exposed to the virus but are not yet showing symptoms. You are not likely to catch Ebola just by being in proximity to someone who has the virus. It is not spread through the air like the flu or respiratory viruses such as SARS.

Instead, Ebola spreads through direct contact with bodily fluids. If an infected person’s blood or vomit gets in another person’s eyes, nose or mouth, the infection may be transmitted. In the current outbreak, most new cases are occurring among people who have been taking care of sick relatives or who have prepared an infected body for burial.

Health care workers are at high risk, especially if they have not been properly equipped with protective gear or correctly trained to use and decontaminate it.

The virus can survive on surfaces, so any object contaminated with bodily fluids, like a latex glove or a hypodermic needle, may spread the disease.

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October 1, 2014 at 6:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The assassination of a French tourist by militants in Algeria has raised the fear of new terrorist attacks in the country. Hervé Gourdel, 55, was beheaded on September 24 by a radical Islamist group, ‘Soldiers of the Caliphate’ linked to Islamic State in Iraq, in the north-eastern region of Kabylie.

Gourdel, who was an experienced hiker, was kidnapped on September 21, along with 5 Algerians, but his companions were released 14 hours later.

His murder has sparked a wave of indignation and anger, notably via social media. It reminds Algeria and the world of the civil war of the 1990s, also known as ‘‘The Black Decade’’ when more than 150,000 people died violently, while thousands of others went missing. This followed the annulment of an election won by an Islamist group, after which the Armed Islamic Group (GIA) sought to gain power, opposed by the Algerian military.

Now, members of the Christian community in Bejaia, one of the main cities in Kabylie, are particularly concerned over the threats posed by militants. "If we consider the fate reserved by IS fighters for Iraqi Christians, there is genuine reason to express concerns over the church in Algeria. That is why we must be vigilant,’’ said Omar, 31, member of a Protestant church in Bejaia.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureViolence* International News & CommentaryAfricaAlgeria* Theology

October 1, 2014 at 5:45 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Here's why you should care about this:

It is a spiteful act. Take a moment to read the original announcement. The protesting faculty took pains to be as diplomatic as possible, leaving readers uncertain as to what their specific complaints were. The word "heavy-handed" does not even begin to describe the administration's response to their tact.

It is deceitful. The dean and president (who is also a reverend) reportedly announced to the student body that the protesting faculty had resigned. They did not.

It is unreasonable. The dean and president has basically fired people for wanting to talk to his superiors. In what universe is this an appropriate course of action?

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC Conflicts* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral TheologySeminary / Theological Education

October 1, 2014 at 5:30 am - 1 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass., has also seen a battle erupt between its dean and faculty. Of the Episcopal Church’s 10 seminaries, several are facing financial challenges. Bexley Hall Seminary in Ohio affiliated with Seabury-Western Seminary in Illinois to form Bexley Seabury in 2013.

“There appears to be a profound lack of theological reflection in the process of change that the Dean has undertaken, which along with an impatience with relationship-building, that is strangely at odds with the mission of a seminary to form and prepare priests for mission in parish communities,” Andrew Gerns wrote in a post for Episcopal Cafe.

In 2013-2014, GTS enrolled 70 students and had $10.6 million in expenditures and $27 million in investments, according to ATS. GTS had faced about $40 million of debt that it was attempting to pay down through property sales and redevelopment.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)* TheologySeminary / Theological Education

October 1, 2014 at 5:15 am - 3 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Faculty members at the country’s oldest Episcopal seminary are facing off against the school’s President, blasting him for his allegedly bullying, heavy-handed leadership style.

Eight professors at New York’s General Theological Seminary announced Friday that they are not going to teach, attend meetings, or participate in common worship until they can meet with the school’s Board of Trustees, according Anglican Ink.

In a letter distributed to students, the professors accuse the seminary’s Dean and President, The Very Rev. Kurt H. Dunkle, of failing to collaborate or take their grievances seriously, creating a climate “fraught with conflict, fear, and anxiety.”

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)* TheologySeminary / Theological Education

October 1, 2014 at 5:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

O God, who by the teaching of thy faithful servant and bishop Remigius didst turn the nation of the Franks from vain idolatry to the worship of thee, the true and living God, in the fullness of the catholic faith; Grant that we who glory in the name of Christian may show forth our faith in worthy deeds; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch HistorySpirituality/Prayer

October 1, 2014 at 4:40 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

O Lord, take thou full possession of my heart, raise there thy throne, and command there as thou dost in heaven. Being created by thee, let me live to thee. Being created for thee, let me ever act for thy glory. Being redeemed by thee, let me render to thee what is thine, and let my spirit ever cleave to thee alone; for thy name’s sake.

--John Wesley

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer

October 1, 2014 at 4:20 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

After this he went out, and saw a tax collector, named Levi, sitting at the tax office; and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he left everything, and rose and followed him.

And Levi made him a great feast in his house; and there was a large company of tax collectors and others sitting at table with them. And the Pharisees and their scribes murmured against his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” And Jesus answered them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

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Filed under: * TheologyTheology: Scripture

October 1, 2014 at 4:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Yesterday, after much prayer and deliberation and after consulting our legal counsel, the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees of The General Theological Seminary voted with great regret to accept the resignations of eight members of the Seminary faculty. The Board came to this decision with heavy hearts, but following months of internal divisions around the future direction of General Seminary, some faculty member’s demands for action not possible under the governing structure of the Seminary, and the eight faculty members’ refusal to teach, attend meetings, or even worship, it has become clear that this is the best path forward in educating our students and shaping them into leaders of the church. However, even after accepting the resignations, the Seminary is willing to meet with any former faculty member about the possibility of reconsidering the resignation.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedStewardship* Culture-WatchUrban/City Life and Issues* TheologySeminary / Theological Education

September 30, 2014 at 6:58 pm - 2 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Last week, the church gathered for the Provincial Synod including the Finance Meeting, the Standing Committee, and the House of Bishops. There were a host of issues, both national and international. Though I’ll describe some of the findings, they are not the only things of importance. What was most remarkable was the atmosphere of the conversation among the Bishops. Kenya, like every other nation, has many divisive problems.
.......
“GAFCON is the future and it’s life. The ACC is dominated by Western liberals and doesn’t have any life to offer,” offered one of the senior bishops. There were many voices of agreement and no dissent.

When the “continuing Indaba” process came up, there was an energetic and vociferous rejection of it as a fundamentally flawed and corrupt process. There was agreement to stop participating in it, though some of the younger guys wanted to try “taking over” and rejecting the liberal agenda. That happened just before a break where there was lots of conversation with them about the lies and corruption at ACC and Primates meetings.

On the positive side, the enthusiasm for GAFCON was reflected with a resolution formally partnering with GAFCON/GFCA that established a budget line-item toward financial support of GAFCON. That was approved both by the House of Bishops and then later by the Provincial Synod without dissent!

When Archbishop Eliud introduced the topic of Women as Bishops, many bishops were expecting a contentious debate. What actually happened though was a reflection of years of relationship building that Archbishop Eliud has emphasized. There have been ministry times and wonderful meetings with SOMA teams. Last year, Archbishop Foley Beach was on a SOMA team with Bishop John Guernsey where prayer and relational healing took place that caused the Bishops to emerge more unified than ever.

As the House of Bishops met to consider the topic, the conversation was spirited but all the conversation remained collegial and respectful. As the conversation proceeded, many points were brought out including the fact that this was not just something impacting Kenya, but that relationships with other Provinces would be impacted as well. Different bishops warned of taking action that would be in opposition to Nigeria’s position. Others said that a decision to include women as bishops at this time would also be damaging to the Anglican Church in North America because it is such a high priority for a significant number of leaders. I didn’t have to bring that up, others thought of it, too.

It is interesting that not one province that has women bishops has remained orthodox. While it may not be a cause and effect relationship, the situation is so unsettling that it begs inquiry to try and figure out what is going on before proceeding.

As problem solving, prayer, and conversation proceeded, a proposal was suggested to engage in a prayerful theological study and conversation with GAFCON partners to seek a theologically sound consensus. While the discussions proceed, a five year moratorium on women candidates as bishop was proposed.

In the end, that is what passed: a five year moratorium on considering women as candidates for bishop while prayerful, theological study is done in conversation with other GAFCON Provinces (and a few other provinces who are committed to orthodoxy). Also mentioned was the need to address the cultural pressures that are at play. In general, voices outside the church are pushing for removing gender from any role and trying to advance same-sex relationships....

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Kenya

September 30, 2014 at 5:30 pm - 1 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

1 Peter 2:15 – 17 “For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God and honor the emperor” (ESV)
Preamble
The Standing Committee of Provincial Synod consisting of the Bishops, Clergy and Laity of the Anglican Church of Kenya meeting at the All Saints Cathedral Nairobi have reflected and deliberated on various issues affecting the Church and the Nation.

The Church has the moral authority to interrogate and guide those privileged to occupy leadership positions and to guide them to exercise their God given mandate for the benefit of all. Within this context, the Anglican Church has no choice but to remain vigilant, to promote the human dignity as enshrined in the Kenya Constitution. It is our divine duty to ensure that the systems of governance are responsive to the interests of the taxpayers, who sustain Government and society generally. Additionally, the Church must ensure that the sovereignty of the people of Kenya and the rule of law must be respected and protected by all, irrespective of their economic, political or social status.

We therefore seek to draw attention to the following national issues that need to be addressed with due urgency:....
..........
Conclusion
The Church has been the objective voice of the nation offering a platform for negotiation and raising a voice of hope in bleak times. Yet again, the Anglican church of Kenya will avail to be a neutral arbitrator in reconciling any conflicting factors to promote national cohesion and integration.

The Church has a great role to play in public affair management and accountability, national healing, cohesion and integration. Kenyans must coexist regardless on which side of persuasion they are. We as Church leaders therefore do call upon the government, opposition and Kenyans to reason together.
God bless Kenya.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Kenya

September 30, 2014 at 5:17 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

The controversial part of the commitment is the recognition that there will be times when pioneering new congregations will on occasion mean operating without Diocesan approval, and the Anglican Mission in England (AMiE) is the mechanism to enable this. As we heard in various case studies during the day and a half together, there are various scenarios where new congregations have emerged wanting to be Anglican, or where growing parishes have felt the need to establish another presence, a daughter congregation, in a large area of population where the existing parish church is of a totally different churchmanship and is making little impression. Rather than welcome such fresh expressions of Christian life and growth, and eagerly own it as part of the Diocese, many in the official leadership structures block such moves, often through prejudice against conservative evangelical theology. It was emphasised at the conference that in such cases, the aim is not to be “gung-ho” and deliberately rebellious, but rather, after respectful negotiation sometimes over many months, if it becomes impossible to reach agreement, the furtherance of the Gospel must take precedence over niceties of protocol. Such new congregations wanting to maintain an Anglican identity can do so with oversight from AMiE, their panel of Bishops, and their oversight from the GAFCON Primates.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)

September 30, 2014 at 5:12 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control have confirmed that a person in Dallas definitely has the Ebola virus. Tuesday’s official determination makes the Dallas patient the first diagnosed Ebola case in the United States.

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are holding a press conference at 4:30 p.m.

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Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer* Culture-WatchHealth & MedicineUrban/City Life and Issues* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

September 30, 2014 at 3:30 pm - 10 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Sep 28, 2014
There have been several most interesting developments in the past few days.The first is a tidbit of information buried within the final report from the TEC House of Bishops meeting in Taiwan. Bp. Prince Singh of Rochester had asked a question about budget funding for the next Lambeth and PB Jefferts Schori replied that there would very probably be no Lambeth Conference in 2018. No planning or fundraising is currently taking place and ++Welby has said that it would have “to be preceded by a primates meeting at which a vast majority of primates are present.” An overwhelming majority of Global South primates chose not to attend from the last primates meeting and ++Welby will not call another one until well after he has finished his 18-month global visit to all 37 primates in their home provinces. If there is to be another Lambeth Conference (and that appears to be a rather big “if” at this point), it would not be held until 2020.

On the very same day, September 23, Archbishop Eliud Wabukala, Primate of Kenya and Chairman of the GAFCON Primates’ Council, issued his September pastoral letter and dropped a bombshell on Lambeth Palace...

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)

September 30, 2014 at 2:10 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When Jennifer Hopper raced to the emergency room after her husband, Craig, took a baseball in the face, she made sure they went to a hospital in their insurance network in Texas. So when they got a $937 bill from the emergency room doctor, she called the insurer, assuming it was in error.

But the bill was correct: UnitedHealthcare, the insurance company, had paid its customary fee of $151.02 and expected the Hoppers to pay the remaining $785.98, because the doctor at Seton Northwest Hospital in Austin did not participate in their network.

“It never occurred to me that the first line of defense, the person you have to see in an in-network emergency room, could be out of the network,” said Ms. Hopper, who has spent months fighting the bill. “In-network means we just get the building? I thought the doctor came with the E.R.”

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September 30, 2014 at 11:05 am - 4 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[Dean of Brisbane] Dr [Peter] Catt, the chair of the church social responsibilities committee, launched a stinging attack on the Government.

He said: “A business model that depends to a large extent on losses from problem gamblers and the subsequent harm to individuals and families is unethical.

“Even proceeding on the erroneous assumption that harm is in fact limited to a small percentage of the population, this approach effectively validates the great harm done to a few, for the mild pleasure, financial benefit and convenience of the majority.’’

Dr Catt said the Government policy was exposed as “deeply destructive” to both gamblers and their families.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Australia* Culture-WatchGamblingLaw & Legal IssuesPovertyReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryAustralia / NZ* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 30, 2014 at 8:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Lent and Beyond is now on Twitter (@anglicanprayer) ...


and it's given them a lot of new ideas for how to mobilize prayer! They've launched what they hope will be a fairly regular new feature. A daily prayer diary composed of Tweets they've come across focused on specific prayer needs, encouragement from Scriptures, ministries to support, articles challenging us to grow in our Christian life and ministry.

Check it out. Prayer Diary Sept 30 (10 favorite Tweets)

Prayer needs included today include: Ebola, Iraq, South Asia Flooding, Nigeria, Laos, Church Society, Bible Translation, Outreach to Muslims, Hong Kong

Also, don't forget Lent & Beyond's Ebola Crisis Prayers

Latest entries:
Praying for Church leaders in West Africa by name
14 Key Leaders to Pray For
Ebola crisis intercessors

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer* Resources & LinksResources: blogs / websites

September 30, 2014 at 8:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Often we want our churches to grow, but we're not sure what sort of tools to use. We don't have any sort of action plan to get the word out about our congregations. Of course, word of mouth is still the best way to get people to church, but there are things we can do to make that message sharable. Here are a few steps we can take.

Clarify our message—Think about who your church is and what they aspire to be. Can you think of a story in your history that reflects who you are? Can you think of a metaphor or some sort of physical object to reflect that message? Can you boil the message down to three to five words?

Google Maps—Find your church on Google maps and fill out the details. Make sure the contact information is good. Put your website there.

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Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryEvangelism and Church GrowthPastoral Care* Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingMediaReligion & CultureScience & Technology* TheologyPastoral Theology

September 30, 2014 at 7:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

His tenure in Winchester was more than 15 years, during which he not only served that See with distinction, but made a vital contribution to the House of Bishops and to the work of the Church in the House of Lords. With his ability to grasp detail and a remarkable stamina, he fulfilled all the demands made of him with a willingness that made him highly respected not only in the church, but far beyond. In addition Michael served as Prelate to the Order of the Garter, a privilege which he was honoured to fulfill with loyalty and care in service of his Sovereign.

In the wider communion there will be many mourning his passing, as he both cared about and championed many of the dioceses with which Winchester was linked, who suffered not only from lack of resources, but the scourges of war and famine.

He was a person not afraid to say what he believed, even when he knew those views might not be popular. But all this he did from his deep faith, and after much careful prayer.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin WelbyAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)CoE Bishops* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals

September 30, 2014 at 6:35 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Hundreds of young women and girls are leaving their homes in western countries to join Islamic fighters in the Middle East, causing increasing concern among counter-terrorism investigators.

Girls as young as 14 or 15 are travelling mainly to Syria to marry jihadis, bear their children and join communities of fighters, with a small number taking up arms. Many are recruited via social media.

Women and girls appear to make up about 10% of those leaving Europe, North America and Australia to link up with jihadi groups, including Islamic State (Isis). France has the highest number of female jihadi recruits, with 63 in the region – about 25% of the total – and at least another 60 believed to be considering the move.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingTeens / YouthWomen* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* International News & CommentaryEngland / UKEurope* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsIslam

September 30, 2014 at 6:15 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

“This idea that bad judgment is why sexual assault occurs is not true,” says Laura Dunn, a campus rape survivor and legal advocate through the group SurvJustice. “We need to be asking the question: How should laws be addressing the issue of alcohol, rather than allowing it to be a cause. Whether we like it or not, alcohol is part of college campus. In Europe, kids grow up with wine drinking as part of life in the home. In America, we send them off to school when they are 17-18 and say, 'See ya later, hope you can understand what drinking is all about…' ”

But other experts say that lingering questions regarding substance abuse on campus should not overshadow the purpose of California's new law.

“Underage drinking is a small part of this puzzle, but it has overshadowed the basic idea that this new law is trying to address that 'yes means yes,' ” says Michele Delaney, professor of law and associate dean for faculty research at the Villanova School of Law. “So the debate about underage drinking plays into the blurred lines that our society has now allowed to occur.”

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchEducationLaw & Legal IssuesSexualityYoung Adults* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in GeneralState Government* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 30, 2014 at 6:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When the body collectors arrived at the home of Theresa Jacob, at the top of a rocky hillside in Liberia’s capital, her family fought to keep her body. She didn’t die of Ebola, they insisted, showing a stack of hospital documents.

It was a futile battle. After a long argument, a team of Red Cross specialists entered the house in full Hazmat suits, goggles, masks, hoods, boots and two layers of gloves. They disinfected the body of the 24-year-old woman with a heavy chlorine spray, put her into a body bag, carried her down the hillside to their truck and drove her away to be cremated.

Because of the risk of Ebola, every body in Monrovia now is collected and burned, regardless of the cause of death. It’s a symptom of a nearly collapsed state in a massive emergency, when extraordinary measures are needed. With at least 1,830 deaths by official count – and two or three times that number by unofficial estimate – Liberia is the most devastated country in the Ebola zone.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationHealth & Medicine* International News & CommentaryAfricaLiberia

September 30, 2014 at 5:44 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The former Anglican Bishop of Winchester, the Right Reverend Michael Scott-Joynt, has died aged 71.

He served as bishop from 1995 until his retirement in 2011.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said the Church of England had "lost a faithful, hard working and distinguished servant".

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)CoE Bishops* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 30, 2014 at 5:30 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The policies available on the Obamacare exchanges are hastening this trend. Many enrollees are opting for the bronze and silver plans, which often carry deductibles upwards of $5,000 and $2,000, respectively.

“The bronze plans are scaring a lot of administrators because the patient liability is so large,” said Debra Lowe, administrative director of revenue cycle at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center. “Patients are unaware they have this high deductible.”

Upfront payments aren’t usually required, but more hospitals are asking patients to settle the bill in advance. If patients can’t afford the charges, some hospitals place them into financial assistance programs, such as payment plans or low-interest loans. Others help them sign up for Medicaid or individual coverage on the Obamacare exchanges. Patients can still opt to wait until after the bill goes through their insurance.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & Medicine--The 2009 American Health Care Reform Debate* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal Finance* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

September 30, 2014 at 5:15 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

St Barnabas Church in Swanmore will launch Barnaby’s Coffee Shop on October 11 after a £20,000 project to create a relaxed space for coffee, cake and chat.

Members of the congregation have worked hard to transform their old Victorian school room into a modern coffee shop. Volunteers – including the vicar the Rev Claire Towns – have been training as baristas so they can serve everything from expressos to macchiatos.

The church has bought proper coffee machines, comfy seating, atmospheric lighting and real Columbian coffee to ensure a quality experience.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchDieting/Food/NutritionReligion & Culture* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK

September 30, 2014 at 5:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Twice in the last few months I’ve encountered writers taking note of this shift, and both have made a similar (and provocative) point: The decline of cults, while good news for anxious parents of potential devotees, might actually be a worrying sign for Western culture, an indicator not only of religious stagnation but of declining creativity writ large.

The first writer is Philip Jenkins, a prolific religious historian, who argues that the decline in “the number and scale of controversial fringe sects” is both “genuine and epochal,” and something that should worry more mainstream religious believers rather than comfort them. A wild fringe, he suggests, is often a sign of a healthy, vital center, and a religious culture that lacks for charismatic weirdos may lack “a solid core of spiritual activism and inquiry” as well.

The second writer is Peter Thiel, the PayPal co-founder, venture capitalist and controversialist, who includes an interesting aside about the decline of cults in his new book, “Zero to One” — officially a book of advice to would-be entrepreneurs, but really a treatise on escaping what he regards as the developed world’s 40-year economic, technological and cultural malaise.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryPhilosophyPsychologyReligion & CultureScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate Life* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 30, 2014 at 4:39 am - 1 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Almighty God, who knowest our necessities before we ask, and our ignorance in asking: Set free thy servants from all anxious thoughts for the morrow; give us contentment with thy good gifts; and confirm our faith that according as we seek thy kingdom, thou wilt not suffer us to lack any good thing; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

--Saint Augustine (354-430)

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer

September 30, 2014 at 4:20 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Lord reigns; let the earth rejoice; let the many coastlands be glad! Clouds and thick darkness are round about him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne. Fire goes before him, and burns up his adversaries round about. His lightnings lighten the world; the earth sees and trembles. The mountains melt like wax before the LORD, before the Lord of all the earth. The heavens proclaim his righteousness; and all the peoples behold his glory.

--Psalm 97:1-6

Filed under: * TheologyTheology: Scripture

September 30, 2014 at 4:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Canon White, the vicar of St George's Church - the only Anglican church in Iraq - said civilians were being killed by coalition air raids in Iraq.

He said: "I've never known the city like it is at the moment.

"Streets which are usually choc-a-bloc with traffic, cars and people are almost empty. People are too fearful to even leave their homes.

"We are at a crisis point. People know IS are coming nearer. People are being killed by the (air) attacks of the coalition."

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Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchReligion & CultureViolence* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, MilitaryForeign RelationsPolitics in GeneralTerrorism* International News & CommentaryMiddle EastIraq

September 29, 2014 at 4:30 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Should democratically elected leaders in more or less secular countries ever say that this or that religion is essentially good or essentially bad? The dilemma is especially acute, perhaps, if the religion that they want to speak about is one which they don't happen to practise, and presumably don't know about in any depth. But ever since September 2001, and especially over the last few weeks of intensifying conflict with Islamic State, it has been a question that Western heads of government cannot completely duck. The West is at war with an adversary which claims to be acting in the name of Islam. Does that mean that the West is, in any sense whatever, at war with Islam?

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyThe U.S. GovernmentForeign RelationsPolitics in GeneralTerrorism* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsIslam* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 29, 2014 at 3:30 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

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.​​

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationReligion & CultureViolence* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* International News & CommentaryMiddle East* Religion News & CommentaryInter-Faith RelationsOther ChurchesOther FaithsIslamMuslim-Christian relations* Theology

September 29, 2014 at 12:46 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

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.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchChildrenGlobalizationMarriage & FamilyReligion & Culture* Religion News & CommentaryEcumenical RelationsOther ChurchesEvangelicalsRoman CatholicPope Francis * TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 29, 2014 at 11:08 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

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

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)

September 29, 2014 at 9:17 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

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