Posted by The_Elves

Thanks to commenters David Keller and David Handy for suggesting this topic:
David Keller writes:

"I was looking for something in an office cabinet yesterday and found a picture of the Vestry of Christ Church Greenville, SC in 2002. Of the 14 vestry members, 4 are left at CC. Five are at St. Paul’s Anglican, my church, including the Junior Warden in that picture and the next Junior Warden. The Senior Warden is at a PCA Church, but his daughter is on the vestry at St. Paul’s and he visits St Paul’s regularly. Two are at “mega” (very orthodox) independent churches. One is now a Methodist. One is deceased"

What has happened for you and those you know in the last decade or so? What general lessons are there from this time, and how has God used it?

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church Life

August 31, 2015 at 12:48 pm - 8 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Thanks to commenters Pageantmaster and profpk for this topic:
"With twitter, facebook and other social media providing instant albeit short interactions, are weblogs approaching their sell by date?"

"In response to Pageantmaster’s comment, yes I believe blogs are fading as a useful means of communication, even though I have been following TitusOneNine for years and have filched leads from it to post on my Facebook group, Anglican Evangelicals. No one reads my blog, An Anglican Witness, anymore, whereas we are approving new members of the Facebook group daily. I was very pleased when Kendall joined the group."

Is the day of the weblog over? Will it go the way of the VHS video recorder? Do weblogs still perform a useful function?

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social Networking

August 29, 2015 at 9:22 am - 16 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

With thanks to Underground Pewster for suggesting this topic
Losing your religion? What resources may help renewal during spiritual slow downs and do you have any experience of using them?

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church Life

August 28, 2015 at 9:04 am - 6 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

It is late Summer, the living is easy, and the Elves are feeling lazy. Can you help them out with ideas for an open thread or post? Have you seen something you would like to draw others attention to?
Do you have any suggestions?

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet

August 26, 2015 at 4:36 pm - 9 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

From here:
The Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina; The Trustees of The Protestant Episcopal Church in South Carolina, a South Carolina Corporate Body; All Saints Protestant Episcopal Church, Inc.; Christ St. Paul's Episcopal Church; Christ the King, Waccamaw; Church of The Cross, Inc. And Church of the Cross Declaration of Trust; Church of The Holy Comforter; Church of the Redeemer; Holy Trinity Episcopal Church; Saint Luke's Church, Hilton Head; St. Matthews Church; St. Andrews Church-Mt. Pleasant Land Trust; St. Bartholomews Episcopal Church; St. David's Church; St. James' Church, James Island, S.C.; St. John's Episcopal Church of Florence, S.C.; St. Matthias Episcopal Church, Inc.; St. Paul's Episcopal Church of Bennettsville, Inc.;

Read more...

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South CarolinaTEC ParishesTEC Polity & Canons* Christian Life / Church LifeChurch HistoryParish MinistryStewardshipSpirituality/Prayer* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* South Carolina* Theology

August 12, 2015 at 6:12 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Rev. Colin Coward, director of Changing Attitude reports on his conversations with David Porter - from 'A Conversation with Colin Coward 18th April 2015' at St Brides, Liverpool
OK, so that’s what we are stuck with, the Shared Conversations. And I have been arguing amongst the LGBTI Anglican coalition, that we should not simply tolerate what we are being offered, which effectively is a two year delay.

I know from the conversations that we had with David Porter at Lambeth Palace that there is, for him at least, a clear intention that there will be a proper, motioned, discussion at General Synod in February 2017, with the intention of legislating for some kind of change in Church of England practice towards LGBTI people. But it’s going to be what they think they can get away with without upsetting the conservatives too much. So my guess is that it is going to be approval for the blessing of relationships in church, it certainly won’t be for recognising marriage. It certainly will not be for changing the quadruple lock and moving towards allowing equal marriages to take place in Church of England buildings.

Read more...

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

July 28, 2015 at 3:13 pm - 9 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

April 28, 2015 at 7:35 pm - 2 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

U.S. employment growth slowed in August but the jobless rate fell to the lowest level since 2008, a mixed labor-market reading that leaves the Federal Reserve with a challenging decision on whether to raise short-term rates at its September meeting.

Nonfarm payrolls rose a seasonally adjusted 173,000 in August, the Labor Department said Friday. Revisions showed employers added 44,000 new jobs in June and July than previously estimated.

However, the unemployment rate, which comes from a separate survey of U.S. households, fell to 5.1%, from 5.3% the previous month. The unemployment rate is now lower than at any point since 2008 and right in the middle of the Fed’s long-run projections.

The decline in the unemployment rate strengthens the case for an interest rate increase at the Fed’s Sept. 16-17 meeting.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketThe U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve

September 4, 2015 at 11:28 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The credit crunch of 2008 was quick and brutal. With some 900 apartments coming up for imminent completion, I suddenly found myself in the firing line, facing a queue of creditors demanding their money. Any value in my business disappeared overnight as the property developers stripped the company of its cash. The next two years were the hardest of my life as our family adjusted to the dramatic change in our finances.

That same year, my 2-year-old son became critically ill. Ishaan was a sickly child and had been hospitalized many times with severe breathing difficulties. Now, with the nebulizer failing, he was rushed into resuscitation. Within minutes the ER teemed with doctors and nurses fighting for his life. His airways shut, and he was intubated to keep him alive. He was later transferred to a hospital in London.

Read more...

Filed under: * Culture-WatchChildrenMarriage & Family* International News & CommentaryAsiaIndiaEngland / UK* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsHinduism* TheologyChristologySoteriology

September 4, 2015 at 8:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The idea of a cloistered life strikes some as one of severity and silence, of running away from a broken heart or a broken life. But as Toni Greaves discovered when she visited a community of cloistered nuns in New Jersey, it was a joyful embrace of a life that is in many ways countercultural given the me-first society that lurks beyond the convent’s walls.

At the Dominican Monastery of Our Lady of the Rosary, the subject of her book “Radical Love,” she found women who despite having other chances for work, love and life in the secular world had embraced a simpler existence of prayer, study and meditation. A good number of them were young and learned about the religious life online, choosing to join a community of some 20 nuns at the Summit, N.J., cloister.

“We think of monasteries as these quiet places, and they are quiet, but I was surprised by the happiness, joy and love I saw there,” Ms. Greaves said. “We tend to think of these young nuns as having given something up, but what I saw was the opposite. It’s like being around a bunch of young women who were in love.”

Read it all and please do not miss the pictures.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeLiturgy, Music, WorshipSpirituality/Prayer* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* General InterestPhotos/Photography

September 4, 2015 at 7:29 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Archbishop Idowu-Fearon attended the consecration of the first indigenous bishops in the Diocese of Peru in July, and noted the plans for the diocese of Peru to become its own province. He reported that the visit underlined the role of language in giving a sense of belonging to Communion and the continued need to explore ways of increasing the linguistic inclusiveness of the Communion.

Archbishop Idowu-Fearon attended the recent meeting of the provincial secretaries in Dublin. The gathering is an important opportunity to build relationships and hear about life and witness in the different contexts of the Communion.

The Secretary General also visited the Primate of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem & the Middle East, the Most Revd Dr Mouneer Hanna Anis, to explore opportunities to meet with primates and bishops at the planned Global South conference in October.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal

September 4, 2015 at 7:05 am - 2 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In a first-of-its-kind study, LifeWay Research surveyed 1,500 pastors of evangelical and historically black churches and found an estimated 13 percent of senior pastors in 2005 had left the pastorate 10 years later for reasons other than death or retirement.

"Pastors are not leaving the ministry in droves," said vice president Scott McConnell.

Still, pastors say the role can be tough:

84 percent say they're on call 24 hours a day.
80 percent expect conflict in their church.
54 percent find the role of pastor frequently overwhelming.
53 percent are often concerned about their family's financial security.
48 percent often feel the demands of ministry are more than they can handle.
21 percent say their church has unrealistic expectations of them.

"This is a brutal job," McConnell said. "The problem isn't that pastors are quitting—the problem is that pastors have a challenging work environment....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchHealth & MedicinePsychologyReligion & CultureSociology* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

September 4, 2015 at 7:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

As recent events have demonstrated, we should not. China’s stock market crash is not the work of malicious financial journalists and short-selling hedge funds, but a signal of difficult time ahead and perhaps even of an economic road-crash to come. After nearly 35 years of spectacular progress, the Chinese economy faces multiple challenges on many fronts which are not going to be solved by denying harsh realities and imprisoning journalists.

The progress of recent decades belies an industrial sector which in truth has become quite seriously uncompetitive by international standards. Many of China’s factories need completely retooling to keep up with developments in robotics and other forms of mechanisation. Yet if industry is to get less labour intensive, this only further steepens the challenge of employment creation.

It is reckoned that China needs to create some 20 million jobs a year just to keep pace with employment demand as the population shifts from land to town, eight million of them in high-end professions to cater for the country’s burgeoning output of graduates. China’s modernisation has created a monster which it is struggling to feed.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationHistory* Economics, PoliticsEconomyForeign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryAsiaChina

September 4, 2015 at 6:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Germany and France pressed the rest of Europe to end squabbling over its exploding migration crisis that is sowing new political divisions across the Continent.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President François Hollande called for a burden-sharing system to distribute across the European Union the swelling numbers of people arriving from violent regions in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.

Their call for action came as hundreds of migrants faced off with Hungarian police and after a photograph of a Syrian boy lying dead on the beach in Turkey, drowned trying to reach a Greek island, appeared on the front pages of newspapers across Europe. The image sparked outrage at what critics say is the European Union’s timid response to the crisis.

“It’s a tragedy,” Mr. Hollande said of the boy’s death, “but it’s also an appeal to the European conscience.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryLaw & Legal IssuesPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyForeign RelationsImmigrationPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

September 4, 2015 at 5:30 am - 2 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Churches in Britain on Tuesday joined in prayers dedicated to the environment.

The Church of England’s lead bishop in this area, the Bishop of Salisbury, the Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, urged Anglicans on 1 September to "stop, fast, think, and pray about the need to care for God’s good but fragile creation".

Bishop Holtam said: "Whatever the scientific, economic, and political difficulties, at root this is a spiritual problem. Prayer helps clarify what we want, and strengthens our determination for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer* Economics, PoliticsEnergy, Natural Resources* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 4, 2015 at 5:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Wangaratta's bishop has become the country’s first senior Anglican cleric publicly to recognise that the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Australia has become inevitable.

Bishop John Parkes – a former barrister – has told the Chronicle that he believes the country has “grown up” and that the federal government will be bound within a relatively short time to change the Marriage Act to enable people of the same gender to marry.

He admits that the challenge of such a move for religious faiths will be complex – but does not believe that gay marriage will become “a betrayal of the Gospel or the end of the world”.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Australia* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesMarriage & FamilyReligion & CultureSexuality--Civil Unions & Partnerships* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryAustralia / NZ* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral TheologyTheology: Scripture

September 4, 2015 at 4:40 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

O holy and ever-blessed Jesus, who being the eternal Son of God and most high in the glory of the Father, didst vouchsafe in love for us sinners to be born of a pure virgin, and didst humble thyself unto death, even the death of the cross : Deepen within us, we beseech thee, a due sense of thy infinite love; that adoring and believing in thee as our Lord and Saviour, we may trust in thy infinite merits, imitate thy holy example, obey thy commands, and finally enjoy thy promises; who with the Father and the Holy Ghost livest and reignest, one God, world without end.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer

September 4, 2015 at 4:20 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

But I trust in thee, O LORD, I say, "Thou art my God." My times are in thy hand; deliver me from the hand of my enemies and persecutors! Let thy face shine on thy servant; save me in thy steadfast love!

--Psalm 31:15-16

Filed under:

September 4, 2015 at 4:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[Courtney] Holmes tries to encourage the kids to do more than just read and sound out words —he wants them to understand and learn from the books.

"Their memory is being challenged," he said. At the end of each hair cut he asks, "What is this book about?"

"Trims 4 Tales" also sends each child home with a bag of books, encouraging them to keep reading until their next visit — which Holmes hopes will be very soon.

"The joy on their face — it makes me feel like a million bucks just to see that," he said.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBooksChildrenMarriage & Family* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate Life* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 3, 2015 at 3:18 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

We deplore the situation of insecurity that prevails in Burundi. We call on those in leadership to put the needs of the poor and vulnerable ahead of their own interests. We call on the UN, the African Union and the East African Community to renew all possible efforts to support peace.

We call on Christians of all denominations to pray fervently for Burundi, and we call on the leaders in Burundi earnestly to seek peace and pursue it and especially to call the various political leaders to resume immediately serious and inclusive dialogue.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal* Culture-WatchPoverty* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryAfricaBurundi* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

September 3, 2015 at 12:26 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Pope Francis on Wednesday (Sept. 2) told his followers to clamber down from their lofty skyscrapers, reclaim public spaces and rejoin communities.

Speaking at his weekly public audience at the Vatican, the pope said it was up to families to rejuvenate cities.

There may be a lot of ways to spend one’s free time in a city, but love is missing, Francis said.

“The smile of a family is capable of overcoming this desertification of our cities. And this is the victory of the love of a family,” he told followers in St. Peter’s Square.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman CatholicPope Francis

September 3, 2015 at 11:29 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In his book Civil Religion: A Dialogue in the History of Political Philosophy, Ronald Beiner argues that in modernity the attempt to domesticate strong religious convictions in the interest of state control has assumed two primary and antithetical alternatives: civil religion or liberalism.

Civil religion is the attempt to empower religion, not for the good of religion, but for the creation of the citizen. Indeed, the very creation of "religion" as a concept more fundamental than a determinative tradition is a manifestation that, at least in Western societies, Christianity has become "civil." Rousseau, according to Beiner, is the decisive figure that gave expression to this transformation because Rousseau saw clearly that the modern state could not risk having a church capable of challenging its political authority. In the process, the political concepts used to legitimize the modern state, at least if Carl Schmitt is right, are secularized theological concepts.

In contrast to civil religion, the liberal alternative rejects all attempts to use religion to produce citizens in service to the state. Liberalism, in its many versions, according to Beiner, seeks to domesticate or neutralize the impact of religious commitment on political life. Liberalism may well result in the production of a banal and flattened account of human existence, but such a form of life seems necessary if we are to be at peace with one another. In other words, liberalism as a way of life depends on the creation of people who think there is nothing for which it worth dying. Such a way of life was exemplified by President Bush who suggested that the duty of Americans after 11 September 2001 was to go shopping.

I have earned the description of being a "fideistic, sectarian, tribalist" because of my attempt to imagine an ecclesial alternative capable of resisting the politics Beiner describes.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 3, 2015 at 8:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

September 3, 2015 at 7:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Veterans and US officials gathered in Pearl Harbor to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War Two.

Admiral Scott Swift, commander of the US Pacific Fleet, addressed the hundreds gathered on the deck of the now decommissioned battleship USS Missouri.

Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu and Army General Yoshijiro Umezu signed formal surrender documents on the same deck on 2 September, 1945.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, Military* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

September 3, 2015 at 6:20 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

After accompanying Pentagon officials on a tour Wednesday of the Navy brig near Charleston, U.S. Sen. Tim Scott said he remained opposed to plans to transfer terrorists now held at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba to a mainland U.S. prison.

“The only solution is enemy combatants must stay in Guantanamo Bay,” Scott, R-S.C., said during a news conference outside the main gate to the Navy base. “One thing that’s completely clear, without any question, there is no compelling reason to close down Gitmo.”

The Navy brig and the Army Detention Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., are among the sites being considered for holding terrorist detainees if President Barack Obama succeeds in shutting down the prison at Gitmo.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPrison/Prison Ministry* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, MilitaryPolitics in GeneralOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenateTerrorism* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 3, 2015 at 6:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

An independent Government-appointed consultant will be brought in to negotiate plans for the earthquake-damaged Christ Church Cathedral after four years of deadlock.

Plans for the future of Christchurch's iconic cathedral stalled in 2011 after Anglican leaders came out in support of plans to partially demolish the building.

They had faced ongoing opposition from heritage campaigners, particularly the Great Christchurch Building Trust (GCBT), which wanted the old cathedral to be fully restored.

Bishop Victoria Matthews made the announcement to a full house at the Christ Church Transitional Cathedral on Hereford St on Thursday evening.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchUrban/City Life and Issues* General InterestNatural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.

September 3, 2015 at 5:45 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Suspected Boko Haram gunmen on horseback killed at least 24 people in two separate attacks on villages in northeast Nigeria, military and vigilante sources said on Wednesday.

The gunmen opened fire and threw explosive devices in Kolori and Ba'ana Imam, in Damboa Local Government, Borno state, in the attacks on Monday evening.

Although nobody has claimed responsibility and the militants are rarely on horseback, the attacks bore the hallmarks of the Islamist group, which has killed thousands in its six-year-old bid to set up a state adhering to sharia law in the northeast.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureViolence* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, MilitaryPolitics in GeneralTerrorism* International News & CommentaryAfricaNigeria* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsIslam* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 3, 2015 at 5:30 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

If the clash between theism and atheism were merely about metaphysical ideas, personal choices, or even quests made by consenting adults, then it should indeed be a negotiable difference in societies which allow for many other kinds of diversity. Thinkers like Mr Gray or even Bishop Jenkins may help us negotiate. But they do not entirely solve the problem. It is striking that the most intractable disputes between believers and non-believers concern the treatment of children: how and by whom they should be raised; what they should be taught about the origin of the world; whether, in the name of religious custom, their bodies should be mutilated; whether the education of boys and girls should be separate and in some way differentiated, as conservative Islam mandates; and at what point in their biological development one can speak of a life which cannot morally be terminated. With or without the guidance of brainy public intellectuals, these are hard arguments which lead to hard choices.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchChildrenMarriage & FamilyReligion & Culture* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsAtheism

September 3, 2015 at 5:15 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A new chemical plant is being built in the small African-American town of Mossville in southwest Louisiana, raising significant concerns about health, safety, and environmental impact. The plant’s owner has offered to pay Mossville residents to move out of their homes and sell their churches. The company says it is being generous, but some longtime residents and religious leaders feel they are being forced out. “The church is the hub of the community, as far as relationships and as far as love and caring for one another,” says LaSalle Clarence Williams Sr., chairman of the deacon board at Mount Zion Baptist Church, Mossville’s oldest house of worship.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeEnergy, Natural ResourcesPolitics in GeneralCity Government* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 3, 2015 at 5:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A judge on Wednesday cleared the way for a 48-year-old transgender woman to undergo gender-reassignment surgery, rejecting her parents' effort to have the operation blocked because they say she is mentally incompetent.

Christine Kitzler demonstrated clear understanding of the three-hour procedure and its risks, Judge C. Theodore Fritsch Jr. said, dismissing her parents' request that he appoint a legal guardian and subject her to an independent medical exam.

"I'm so happy," Kitzler whispered as the judge ruled.

Read it all.

I will take comments on this submitted by email only to KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchChildrenHealth & MedicineMarriage & FamilyPsychologySexuality* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

Comments are closed.
September 3, 2015 at 4:40 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Eternal Light, shine into our hearts;

Eternal Goodness, deliver us from evil;

Eternal Power, be our support;

Eternal Wisdom, scatter the darkness of our ignorance;

Eternal Pity, have mercy upon us;

that with all our heart and mind and soul and strength we may seek thy face and be brought by thine infinite mercy to thy holy presence; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeSpirituality/Prayer

September 3, 2015 at 4:19 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Trust in the Lord, and do good;
so you will dwell in the land, and enjoy security.
Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him, and he will act.

--Psalm 37:3-5

Filed under: * TheologyTheology: Scripture

September 3, 2015 at 4:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A person who is very old or very ill decides to stop eating in order to die.

To members of the ancient and tiny faith of Jainism in India, that's a tradition called santhara or sallekhana (literally thinning out).

India's Supreme Court is considering whether to ban the practice as a form of suicide, which is punishable under law. The court is now reviewing the end-of-life ritual.

Some form of fasting is deeply rooted in many religions: Christians practice Lent. Muslims have Ramadan. The Jewish tradition is to fast on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. The Hindu calendar is rich with days of forsaking food.

But right now the attention is on the custom of the Jains...

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesLife EthicsReligion & Culture* International News & CommentaryAsiaIndia* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

September 2, 2015 at 4:18 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The next likely flashpoint for the Synod currently being elected will be over same-sex marriage and sexuality, once the shared conversations currently being rolled out throughout the dioceses are completed.

Bishop-designate Hardman said that she was hopeful that the Church would learn from the bruising debates over women bishops when it came to discuss sexuality. “I hope we will all reflect on that and take forward the positive things that have happened in understanding ways in which we are going to remain together as a Church, albeit with divergent views.”

She would not be drawn on her own views, saying only that on her first day in her new job she was focusing on “excitement for all that I hope for in this diocese”. Speaking from a C of E academy in Newcastle where the press conference which announced her as the next Bishop of Newcastle was held, she explained that among her priorities as bishop would be education.

Read it all.

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

September 2, 2015 at 3:14 pm - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Charleston has always been known as a drinking city, but newly available statistics show exactly how much alcohol is behind the reputation: Its consumption levels far exceed the national average, contributing to a situation that public health researchers describe as worrisome.

But the numbers that trouble researchers are also deeply reflective of Charleston’s history and culture, which is currently being promoted on an unprecedented global scale. To better understand the incipient clash between a centuries-long tradition of private drinking and rabid public interest in the city that spawned it, The Post and Courier is taking a two-part look at the state of local alcohol consumption, starting with this review of relevant data.

According to statistics compiled independently by the University of Wisconsin’s Population Health Institute and the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Education, Charleston’s alcohol consumption patterns are oddly upper Midwestern in nature. The city’s imbibing habits most closely mirror those of places such as Milwaukee, where nearly half of the population claims German ancestry and enough snow falls every year to bury an average fourth-grader.

Read it all from the local paper.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchAlcohol/DrinkingHistoryUrban/City Life and Issues* South Carolina

September 2, 2015 at 11:11 am - 3 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Dear Muddled:

Don't be so hard on yourself. As the editors of the traditions gathered together under the name “Jeremiah” wrote: “The heart is perverse above all things, and unsearchable, who can know it?” Pascal, though only a Frenchman, expressed a similar sentiment when he said, “The heart has its reasons that reason knows not.” What these authors, separated by centuries, agree upon is this: you cannot control whom you love.

The important thing is that we find a way for you to feel welcome in the Church in your clandestine extramarital relationship with Magdalena. Is it right to call a committed, though unorthodox, loving relationship adultery? I think not. So enjoy the blessings of love (and love!) and do not let small-hearted naysayers keep you from communion!

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryMarriage & FamilyMenPsychologySexualityWomen* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

September 2, 2015 at 8:00 am - 2 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A British jihadist who was a leading recruiter for Isis is believed to have been killed by a new clandestine drone programme designed to take out high-value targets in Syria.

Junaid Hussain, 21, from Birmingham, died when a drone hit the Isis-held city of Raqqa on Tuesday. He was third on an American list of Isis targets and is said to have played a key role as an instigator of lone-wolf attacks in Britain, Europe and the US.

He was jailed for six months in 2012 over a computer hack that gained access to Tony Blair’s address book.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureScience & TechnologyViolence* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, MilitaryTerrorism* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.Middle EastSyria

September 2, 2015 at 7:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A woman who recently died in northern Sierra Leone has tested positive for Ebola.

It comes as a setback to the country's effort to eradicate the deadly disease.

Sierra Leone was celebrating last week when it discharged its last known Ebola patient from hospital.

News of the new case means the country is no longer Ebola-free. High-risk contacts of the woman have been identified, isolated and will now be watched for symptoms.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & Medicine* International News & CommentaryAfricaSierra Leone

September 2, 2015 at 6:29 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Venerable Christine Elizabeth Hardman, aged 64, holds a B.Sc (Econ) from the University of London and trained for ordination on the St Albans Ministerial Training Scheme. She later studied for a Master’s degree in Applied Theology from Westminster College, Oxford. She became a Deaconess in 1984 and was ordained Deacon in 1987, serving as Curate at St John the Baptist, Markyate Street in the Diocese of St Albans. She took up the role of Tutor and Course Director on the St Albans Ministerial Training Scheme from 1988-1996. During this period the Scheme merged with the Oxford Ministry Course and she became its Director of Mission Studies.

Christine was ordained Priest in 1994 and became Vicar of Holy Trinity and Christ the King, Stevenage in 1996 and also Rural Dean of Stevenage in 1999. She served as Archdeacon of Lewisham and Greenwich from 2001 to 2012.

In 2012 Christine became Assistant Priest at Southwark Cathedral and received the Bishop’s Permission to Officiate in the Diocese of St Albans where she has been acting Warden of Readers.

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

September 2, 2015 at 6:15 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

By and large mainline congregations have situated themselves outside the debates over religion and science, leaving it to the young earth creationists and the militant atheists to fight it out. Unfortunately, the rationale for disengagement from that shrill debate has resulted in a disengagement from science altogether. The congregations that claim they are at peace with science do little to articulate why or how that is possible. An alternative narrative to that of hostility between religion and science remains ambiguous and inarticulate within the church and in the public imagination.

While in England recently I had the opportunity to visit the site of the historic Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge, founded in 1874. It was at this site that J. J. Thomson discovered the electron (1897), Ernest Rutherford split the atom (1932), and Francis Crick and James Watson identified the structure of DNA (1953). Twenty-nine researchers associated with the Caven­dish Laboratory have won Nobel prizes.

Our tour guide pointed out the words carved in Latin across the top of the great wooden doors: “Magna opera Domini esquisira in ornnes coluntares ejrts.” It was a quote from Psalm 111:2, “Great are the works of the Lord, studied by all who delight in them.” Our guide went on to note that when the lab was relocated in the 1970s to West Cambridge, the faculty insisted that the new doors be inscribed with the same words—in English.

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Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchReligion & CultureSexuality* Theology

September 2, 2015 at 6:00 am - 0 comments - [link] [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

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