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A free floating commentary on culture, politics, economics, and religion based on a passionate commitment to the truth and a desire graciously to refute that which is contrary to it….
"He must hold firm to the sure word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to confute those who contradict it."
--Titus 1:9, Revised Standard Version
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Downing Street have announced that The Right Reverend Dr Martin Warner, currently Suffragan Bishop of Whitby in the Diocese of York, is to be the next Bishop of Chichester.
Dr Warner, 53, succeeds The Right Reverend John Hind who retired last month.
Dr Warner studied at St Chad’s College in Durham before completing his theological training at St Stephen’s House, Oxford. He was ordained deacon (1984) and priest (1985) in Exeter Cathedral whilst working as Curate of St Peter’s Plymouth.
Read it all.
Jeronimo de Castro Abreu Magalhaes was born in Mage, and Zelia Pedreira Abreu Magalhaes in Niteroi. They were married on July 27, 1876, in the city of Rio de Janeiro.
He was a civil engineer and she was a lawyer, with a fine artistic, literary and scientific formation, so that at 14 she translated the work of Cesare Cantu Il Giovinetto from Italian to Portuguese.
From the moment they met, Jeronimo and Zelia always wanted to please God, when in their exchange of looks it was already clear that their falling in love would be different, said Father Roberto Lopes, who is in charge of the processes of canonization of the Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro.
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The United Methodist Church cannot agree that it disagrees over the issue of homosexuality.
After more than an hour of passionate debate and clear disagreement, two items stating Christians have different opinions about homosexuality were not approved by the 2012 General Conference, leaving the original language in the Book of Discipline intact.
The Book of Discipline, Paragraph 161F states: “The United Methodist Church does not condone the practice of homosexuality and considers this practice incompatible with Christian teaching.”
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Christ Church Anglican (CCA) in Savannah, GA has agreed to settle a 4 ½ year legal battle with The Episcopal Church (TEC), and The Episcopal Diocese of Georgia. At the heart of the dispute was a lawsuit against CCA, the Senior Pastor and fourteen members of the 2007 Vestry (Board) including money damage claims by the Diocese against these individuals in excess of $1million. “While we never agreed that our people had any personal liability, we are pleased to see these claims dropped as this threat of personal financial loss has hung over our people for more than four years. These parishioners served as volunteer directors on a non-profit 501-C3 board and made decisions to try to stand for their beliefs and fulfill their duty to protect the non-profit corporation they served,” said John Albert, CCA Senior Warden.
In 2007, Christ Church Anglican, established in 1733 and predating the formation of TEC by 56 years and the TEC Diocese of Georgia by 90 years, conducted a congregational vote by which 87% of the congregation supported the Vestry’s decision to disaffiliate from TEC over core theological differences. Subsequently, TEC sued Christ Church Anglican, its pastor, and the 14 individual members of the 2007 board. After the Georgia Supreme Court ruling on November 21, 2011, CCA turned over possession of its three buildings (including the church building on Johnson Square) and the parking lot, all worth in excess of $6 million.
As set forth in the settlement agreement, the Church will adopt the title “Christ Church Anglican.” “We see the addition of ‘Anglican’ to our name as a way of identifying our roots going back to our beginnings in Savannah as a Mission of the Church of England in 1733. God has given us the privilege of living out a truth we have always believed, that the Church is not the building but the people of God. God has blessed us in this struggle, as we have maintained the vast majority of our congregation while adding new members who are excited to be part of a church that seeks to live out its beliefs. Orthodox Anglicanism is alive and well in Savannah and we look forward to a bright future,” commented The Rev. Dr. Marc Robertson, Christ Church Anglican’s senior pastor.
Also included in the agreement, is a requirement that all litigation be dropped including CCA’s appeal to the US Supreme Court which asked the Court to decide whether the “neutral principles”doctrine embodied in the First Amendment permits imposition of a trust on church property when the creation of that trust contradicts the state’s property and trust laws. “It was a hard decision to give up our appeal as we are aware of the pain many other Anglican Churches which are being sued by TEC are experiencing, but we are encouraged by the fact that two other strong cases, (Timberridge Presbyterian Church, McDonough, GA and Bishop Seabury, an Anglican parish in Groton, Conn.) are going forward and feel we have supported their effort with our appeal. However, at this time we feel our primary call is to build a stronger Anglican presence in Savannah,” stated Albert.
Judge Michael Karp’s 2008 decision declared that all church property “was held in trust for the Diocese and the national church”, so other aspects of the settlement provide that CCA will relinquish any claim to the Endowment Funds worth some $2.3 million and return $33,000 of operating funds pursuant to an accounting of funds at the time of disaffiliation. The Diocese however agreed to assume a $33,000 debt obligation from CCA. “We have left all our material possessions on Johnson Square, but that which we have taken with us is far more valuable: our people, the historic faith and the Holy Spirit. We have no regrets,” said CCA senior pastor, Marc Robertson.
On December 11, 2011, two weeks before they were required to vacate, Christ Church held its final service in its historic building on Johnson Square. Following that service, the entire congregation of more than 400 people processed down Bull Street to Independent Presbyterian Church (IPC), where they were welcomed by 500 IPC members and Pastor Terry Johnson who stated “our faith is your faith and our buildings are your buildings.” Christ Church now holds Sunday services at 8 a.m., 9 a.m., and 9 p.m. at IPC and Wednesday and Friday noon services at St. Andrew’s Reformed Episcopal Church.
Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) Episcopal Church (TEC) TEC Conflicts TEC Conflicts: Georgia TEC Departing Parishes * Christian Life / Church Life Parish Ministry Stewardship * Culture-Watch Law & Legal Issues
Under new rules announced on Wednesday (May 2), the Vatican will more closely oversee the operations of Caritas Internationalis, a global confederation of 162 national Catholic charities. The decision comes after the Vatican last year vetoed the re-election of the organization's then-secretary general, Lesley-Anne Knight, complaining of a lack of coordination with Vatican officials.
The new rules issued by the Vatican secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, will require all Caritas Internationalis officials make a formal promise of fidelity to church teachings and leaders.
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Filed under: * Culture-Watch Charities/Non-Profit Organizations Religion & Culture * Religion News & Commentary Other Churches Roman Catholic Pope Benedict XVI * Theology Ethics / Moral Theology Pastoral Theology
..."it doesn't withstand scrutiny for anyone to say that this conflict is about the bishops and Rome being upset about the sisters, (President Barack) Obama and birth control," said [National Catholic Report's John] Allen, in a telephone interview from Rome. Also, "no one is upset about all the sisters have done to abolish the death penalty, stand up for immigrants, care for the sick and help the poor. Rome praised them for that. ... Frankly, his report could have been written 20 years ago. The real issues in this case are that old."
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For Christians, says [Fleming] Rutledge, there can be no speaking of "the God of the Old Testament" as though that God is somehow different from "the God of the New Testament." In a sermon on Isaiah 28, she reminds us that "There is just as much good news in the Old Testament as in the New Testament, and a lot of it has the additional advantage of being written in poetry." In another sermon on the same text, (Rutledge admits to "being fascinated" by the prophet's words about evil and suffering), she insists that "a wrathful Old Testament God has not been replaced by a loving New Testament God." Jesus, after all, was known to strike the occasional note of judgment—and God is seen doing much loving in the Old Testament. The God of the Old Testament, Rutledge makes plain, is not the God of caricatures of the Old Testament. Rather, it is precisely "the Old Testament God" who has "come down from his throne on high into the world of sinful human flesh and of his own free will and decision has come under his own judgment in order to deliver us from everlasting condemnation and bring us into eternal life." Since the God of Abraham is the Father of Jesus Christ, "the witness of the entire Scripture is a seamless garment. No change within God occurred in the intertestamental period; there is no break in the revelation of God's self, as though there had been an alteration in God."--Books and Culture, May/June 2012, page 12
At the same time, "there are intrinsic, inalienable features of God in the Old Testament which we would not be able to extract from the New Testament taken by itself." Without Old Testament preaching, how will we know about the election of Israel, "the righteousness of God as both noun and verb," God's jealousy, and God's "aseity (being-from himself)"?
If you, like me, have a nagging feeling that you are not paying enough attention to the Old Testament—if you, like me, feel inadequately acquainted with the biblical testimony to God's jealousy; God's righteousness; God's freedom, testified to in election; or indeed God's love—consider taking up Rutledge's sermons. (They are not an endpoint; as Rutledge surely hopes they will do, these sermons will likely inspire you to further reading—including, I dare suggest, reading more of the Old Testament itself.)
Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal Episcopal Church (TEC) * Christian Life / Church Life Parish Ministry Ministry of the Ordained Preaching / Homiletics * Culture-Watch Books * Theology Theology: Scripture
Federal officials said Wednesday they had charged 107 people across the country in recent days for allegedly running a string of unrelated Medicare fraud schemes involving a total of $452 million in false claims....
Among those arrested were seven people in Baton Rouge, La., who were accused of recruiting elderly, mentally ill and drug-addicted patients from nursing homes and homeless shelters. The suspects allegedly signed up the recruits for mental-health services billed at $225 million over six years that never were given or were medically inappropriate, according to officials.
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When a suicide bomber drove an explosives-packed car into the flagship church of one of Nigeria's largest denominations, angry Christian youth retaliated by burning Muslim shops and killing nearby motorcycle riders.
The February incident, which killed 12 and injured 40 at the Church of Christ in Nigeria's Jos headquarters, fueled the global debate over whether Nigeria will erupt into a religious civil war. Christmas Day bombings of northern churches by Islamist extremists, which killed 44, also fueled such fears. The headlines haven't stopped since. On Sunday, gunmen attacked church services in Kano and in Maiduguri, killing at least 21 people, including a pastor preparing for Communion.
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The city of Chicago is near insolvency. City workers are bracing for pay and benefit cuts. And Rich Daley, the former mayor who had his behind kissed by the powerful in this town and by much of the media for two decades, has an inside deal that should make sane people sick to their stomachs:
An eventual pension of more than $180,000 for life, according to a Tribune/WGN-TV investigation.
Daley did it on the sneak, our reporters found....
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Mormonism and Islam are among the fastest growing religions in America, while just over half of all Americans are unaffiliated with any denomination, according to a major census of the country’s religious congregations published Wednesday.
The decennial census, released by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies in Chicago, found that the U.S. Muslim community had increased 160 percent from approximately 1 million in 2000 to 2.6 million in 2010.
There are 6.1 million U.S. members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, more commonly known as the Mormons, up 45 percent for the same period....
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Taliban attackers Wednesday targeted a heavily fortified, private compound in eastern Afghanistan that is mostly occupied by international workers with a car bomb about two hours after Obama delivered a speech at Bagram Air Base about the pact. Three bystanders were killed besides the four terrorists.
"With this attack, we want to send a message to Obama that the Afghans will welcome you with attacks. You don't need to sign agreements, you need to focus on how to get out of this country," said Zabiullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman.
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Filed under: * Economics, Politics Defense, National Security, Military Foreign Relations Politics in General War in Afghanistan * International News & Commentary America/U.S.A. Asia Afghanistan
At least twenty million French – around half of the French electorate – tuned in to watch Mr Sarkozy fight for his political life and see whether he would make good his pledge to “atomise” his left-wing rival during the almost three-hour clash.
Trailing Mr Hollande in the polls by at least seven points ahead of Sunday's presidential runoff, this was the Right-winger's best hope of catching up to defy the odds.
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The titles are:
Holy conversations have unintended effectRead them all.
Attempt at ‘Holy Conversation’ also brings pain
Stop living in denial
The Theology of Glee: A General Conference “Gleetup”
Since going on sale in the first week of April, more than 400,000 copies of the Diamond Jubilee New Testament have been ordered by churches of all denominations around the UK and other countries too – more than double the expected amount.
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Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal Anglican Provinces Church of England (CoE) * Culture-Watch Books Religion & Culture * International News & Commentary England / UK * Theology Theology: Scripture
Lord Jesus, my Saviour, let me now come to thee:
My heart is cold; O Lord, warm it with thy selfless love.Lord Jesus, my heart is thine; possess it always and only for thyself.
My heart is sinful; cleanse it by thy precious blood.
My heart is weak; strengthen it by thy joyous Spirit.
My heart is empty; fill it with thy divine presence.
--M.A.P. Wood (from Saint Augustine)
"You have heard that it was said to the men of old, 'You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment.' But I say to you that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says, 'You fool!' shall be liable to the hell of fire. So if you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Make friends quickly with your accuser, while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison; truly, I say to you, you will never get out till you have paid the last penny.
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