Posted by Kendall Harmon

The fact that there are now two cowboy churches in the Fort Worth Stockyards is a sign of the times: Dozens of these churches have popped up in the last 15 years, constituting a rapidly growing constituency of new Western Christianity that embraces simple services over big-church productions.

Westby's church is a nondenominational congregation with a relaxed, indoor service featuring lots of music and no formal sermon. Miller's, meanwhile, is associated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas and has been open for a little more than a year with a focus on ministry that goes beyond Sunday morning.

The two pastors don't conflict or compete: They say there are enough cowboys, or at least enough people who want to worship like a cowboy, in the Stockyards to go around.

"Talking to someone about religion is like talking about politics," Miller said. "Talk to them about their horses and their spirituality, that's what they connect with."

Read it all.



Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* General InterestAnimals* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.* Theology

0 Comments
Posted September 17, 2014 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

"The closed fist receives nothing."

--Micehle Oka Doner, Readers Digest (August 2014), p. 156



Filed under: * General Interest

0 Comments
Posted September 15, 2014 at 4:59 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Take the time to watch it all.

Filed under: * General InterestAnimalsPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted September 13, 2014 at 5:42 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Since the Jennifer Lawrence photo hack, Internet security has come under scrutiny. But why do many young women feel the need to take and share nude selfies in the first place? Don’t get me wrong: I think hackers are morally reprehensible and should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. But I also think that we need to build an alternative to the dogma “If you’ve got it, flaunt it.” Young women are told that it’s a sign of being proud of your sexuality to “sext” young men—a philosophy that has turned girls into so many flashing beacons, frantic to keep the attention of the males in their lives by striking porn-inspired poses.

Today if you watch the famous Algerian-French singer Enrico Macias singing to his late wife, Suzy, about how he “won her love,” their dynamic seems as if it’s from another planet. Some might watch this decades-old video and imagine her passivity indicates that she wasn’t empowered. But I see something else in her shy manner and dancing eyes: a drama between them that was not for the public to see. The words of his song are certainly moving—“In the exile’s nights, we were together/ My son and my daughter are truly from you/ I spent my life … waiting for you”—and yet there was even more than what those beautiful lyrics revealed.

The pressure on girls today to take sexy selfies comes out of a culture that routinely equates modesty with shame, instead of recognizing it for what it really is: an impulse that protects what is precious and intimate.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingPsychologySexualityTeens / YouthWomen* General InterestPhotos/Photography* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

4 Comments
Posted September 12, 2014 at 3:45 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Take a look at them all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* General InterestPhotos/Photography

1 Comments
Posted September 11, 2014 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Examine them all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryLaw & Legal IssuesPolice/FireUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketTerrorism* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted September 11, 2014 at 4:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Check it out--wow.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted September 11, 2014 at 7:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

This is a long download but an important file to take the time to listen to and watch. There are a few pieces I would have wished to do differently in terms of the choices for specific content, but the actual footage and the music is valuable.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchHistoryMusicUrban/City Life and IssuesViolence* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted September 11, 2014 at 6:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It isn't easy, but it is important--I make myself do this every year on this day. Watch it silently, and watch it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted September 11, 2014 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



(Courtesy of our son Nathaniel Harmon, who now lives and works in NYC).

Filed under: * By KendallHarmon Family* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsTerrorism* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted September 11, 2014 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

PROS

Efficiently combines the frustration of being in a relationship with the loneliness of being single
Girlfriend in other state provides convenient way to ignore your fear of meeting new people
More pillows for yourself
Technology allows couples to communicate as if Skype session is a prison visit with thick sheet of glass between them....

LOL. Read it all.

Filed under: * General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted September 10, 2014 at 11:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

These are just remarkable--take the time to look at them all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBooksHistoryReligion & Culture* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryEuropeItaly* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman Catholic

1 Comments
Posted September 9, 2014 at 4:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

“What day is it?", asked Winnie the Pooh "It's today," squeaked Piglet "My favorite day," said Pooh”

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBooksChildren* General InterestNotable & Quotable

0 Comments
Posted September 9, 2014 at 11:01 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Ever since rivers have been dammed, destroying the migration routes of salmon, humans have worked to create ways to help the fish return to their spawning grounds. We've built ladders and elevators; we've carried them by hand and transported them in trucks. Even helicopters have been used to fly fish upstream.

But all of those methods are expensive and none of them are efficient.

Enter the salmon cannon.

The device uses a pressure differential to suck up a fish, send it through a tube at up to 22 mph and then shoot it out the other side, reaching heights of up to 30 feet. This weekend, it will be used to move hatchery fish up a tributary of the Columbia River in Washington.

Read it all and enjoy the video also.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeEnergy, Natural Resources* General InterestAnimals* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted September 2, 2014 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Take a look.

Filed under: * By KendallHarmon Family* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted September 2, 2014 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves



Filed under: * General Interest

10 Comments
Posted August 26, 2014 at 11:09 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Our favorite blog host, the Rev. Canon Dr. Kendall Harmon, has been showing off the beauty of Camp St. Christopher in the family vacation photos he's posted (here and here). As August winds down, we invite our readers to share comments about some memorable vacations and vacation destinations - and perhaps also hoped-for vacation destinations. Where would you choose to visit if time and money permitted?

Previous Open Threads:
Books
Guest Blogger
Memorable Sermons
Laughter the Best Medicine


Filed under: * General Interest

8 Comments
Posted August 25, 2014 at 9:03 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

See if you can match these 20 famous names from church history with their pictures. Let us know in the comments how you did!

The quiz is here.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* General InterestHumor / Trivia

4 Comments
Posted August 23, 2014 at 3:04 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Excellent reading. Ed Stetzer interviewed Nancy & David Writebol's adult children about how the family has coped with Nancy's illness with the Ebola virus.
Here's an excerpt.


What do you want to come from this?

Jeremy: I think the perspective that we hope others will gain from this is that in suffering there is hope, namely Jesus himself. Often we are tempted to think “why me” when suffering comes about and unless we see it in the larger picture of God’s glory and the unfolding and revealing of his character and nature to the world we will miss the joy that it is to be part of God’s great story.
In suffering there is hope, namely Jesus himself.

Brian: I think I would like those who look into our lives through this time to see Christ and see He alone in our refuge in trying times. This “strong tower” comes in the form of prayer, Scripture, and the Holy Sprint providing comfort and peace in our hearts in the darkest moments. Through this peace we are able to worship and glorify him no matter the outcome.

Esther: I want people to see Christ lifted high and to see that God’s plans for each of our lives is always for our good and His glory. God is Sovereign, he is Holy and he is good- all the time, no matter what the circumstances in our lives are- we can trust him to lovingly walk us through the dark and scary times as well as the joyful times of our lives.

How has this affected her faith?

Brian: In conversations with Mom I’ve picked up a sense that she has a deeper understanding on Christ sufficiency in all circumstances. He really is able to give peace and comfort when we have no where else to turn.

[...]

Stephanie: I had a wonderful conversation with my mother-in-law one day while she was laying in the bed at Emory University—looking at her through glass. She said:

"Steph, I have asked myself many, many times in my life, Is Jesus enough? I wasn't always sure how I could really answer that. When I was being put on that plane to come to the US, I knew I was leaving my home where all my things would be destroyed. I was saying goodbye to David, not knowing if I would see him again. I was getting on that plane unsure if I would be alive when I got to the US to see all of you. It was that moment when I cried out and knew, 'Jesus, you have to be enough. Jesus, you are all I have - you are enough.'"

Oh how perspective changes—He really is enough!

It's worth reading the whole article.

Filed under: * General Interest* TheologyTheodicy

0 Comments
Posted August 22, 2014 at 12:17 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



Filed under: * By KendallHarmon Family* General InterestPhotos/Photography* South Carolina

1 Comments
Posted August 21, 2014 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

Wonderful news that Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol have both been cured of Ebola and released from Emory University hospital today.

Dr. Brantly's press conference is excellent - It's wonderful to hear his testimony to God's faithfulness.
A video of his press conference and an accompanying short article are here.


Update: NBC News has a written transcript of Dr. Brantly's statement.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeMissions* Culture-WatchHealth & Medicine* General Interest

1 Comments
Posted August 21, 2014 at 11:18 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



The photo is courtesy of Selimah Harmon; you can out more about Camp Saint Christopher there.

Filed under: * By KendallHarmon Family* General InterestAnimals* South Carolina

1 Comments
Posted August 20, 2014 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

As my pointy-eared elven colleague reminded us last week "While Kendall's away, the elves may play." It's time to lighten up around here before summer flits away!

Yes, the world news is grim, but Proverbs 17:22 reminds us "A cheerful heart is good medicine", so please take a few minutes to share something that's made you laugh in recent days:
- a good (clean) joke you've heard;
- a limerick;
- a funny video or picture;
- an amusing story


Filed under: * AdminFeatured (Sticky)* General InterestHumor / Trivia

20 Comments
Posted August 19, 2014 at 3:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

I have been thinking about this one a lot, lately. I was thinking about it long before I read Manage Your Day-to-Day, but that book helpfully distilled it to a single sentence: “We tend to overestimate what we can do in a short period, and underestimate what we can do over a long period, provided we work slowly and consistently.”

This is our temptation in all areas of life: to look for the quick fix, to look for the one or the few great moments that will accomplish more than the hundreds or thousands of smaller moments. “Anthony Trollope, the nineteenth-century writer who managed to be a prolific novelist while also revolutionizing the British postal system, observed, ‘A small daily task, if it be daily, will beat the labors of a spasmodic Hercules’. Over the long run, the unglamorous habit of frequency fosters both productivity and creativity.”

The spasmodic Hercules: this is how many of us behave. We behave as if one moment of great activity can overcome a thousand moments of inactivity, as if one moment of taking hold of opportunity will overcome all those moments wasted. The unglamorous habit of frequency is what makes up so much of life’s progress. Yet we are constantly tempted to put our hope in the brief and the glamorous.

Read the full blog entry at Challies.com

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church Life* General Interest

1 Comments
Posted August 19, 2014 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

We'd love to hear from T19 readers on the following topics:

1) Share memories of a sermon that greatly influenced your life - what was the text, who was the preacher, what year was it?
2) Who are the best preachers you've ever heard give sermons? What made their sermons or teachings memorable and excellent?
3) Are there links to good sermons available online that you would recommend?


Filed under: * AdminFeatured (Sticky)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryPreaching / Homiletics* General Interest

5 Comments
Posted August 16, 2014 at 3:22 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

From Ann Voskamp's blog, A Holy Experience. A beautiful reflection on sending her son off to college, partly written as a letter to her son, partly a reflection on parenting. You may need the kleenex for this! - the elves


[...] Remember how we read a million library books together? I’ll never regret every page we chose over screens.

We ate three meals a day together at a table (and don’t think that doesn’t change the shape of a soul and the world). And we never pushed back our chairs until we’d had our dessert of Scripture. Life is about one thing: Coming to His table and inviting as many as you can to come with you and feast on the only Living Food. We gave you this.

And for better or worse, your Dad and I taught you how to work hard. Make it for the world’s better, son. [...]

And never forget that happiness is when His Word and your walk are in harmony. Never stop keeping company with Christ– and all the sinners, tax-collectors and cast-offs. Be an evangelist and use your words with your hands because your part of a Body and never stop loving God with all your heart, mind and soul, and loving others as yourself. Make that your creed.

It’s true, son: Be different and know everything you do matters. It’s what the Christ followers know: One man with God can change a culture. God didn’t put people in your path mostly for your convenience; He put you there for theirs. Loving the poor will make you rich, I promise.

The only life worth living is the one lost.

And no matter how loud and crazy and broken the world is, child? Let joy live loud in your soul.

Believe that you are His beloved – it’s only when you trust that He loves you that you really begin to live. Really, count a thousand blessings more – why wouldn’t you want joy? Sing to no one and everyone on the front porch in the rain and laugh so much they question your sanity. Pet the dog long.

Because really, none of us knows how long we have. Remember that a pail with a pinhole loses as much as the pail pushed right over. A whole life can be lost in minutes wasted… in the small moments missed. None of this here is forever grace. That’s why it’s amazing grace.

Do it often: grab a lifeline by stepping offline. You’ll see your true self when you look for your reflection in the eyes of souls not the glare of screens.

This is what you always need to know: You have nothing to prove to anyone – if you’re in Him, you are already approved.

Read the full entry here.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchChildrenMarriage & FamilyTeens / Youth* General Interest

0 Comments
Posted August 14, 2014 at 9:49 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

...Professor Gordon Claridge, of the University of Oxford's Department of Experimental Psychology, studied personality questionnaires filled in by 523 comedians (404 men and 119 women) from the UK, US and Australia.

"We found that comedians had a rather unusual personality profile, which was rather contradictory," Prof Claridge says.

"On the one hand, they were rather introverted, depressive, rather schizoid, you might say. And on the other hand, they were rather extroverted and manic.

"That was a rather unusual profile. The actors we compared them with didn't show that, and this was highly significantly different from the norms on the test.

"Possibly the comedy - the extroverted side - is a way of dealing with the depressive side. Of course, this is not true of all comedians."

Laughing to cope

It is not. Not every comedian has difficulties, and depression is far from particular to creative personalities.

Depression is the single biggest killer of men aged 20-49 in the UK, according to the Campaign Against Living Miserably (Calm). It touches all corners of society...

Read it all

Filed under: * General InterestIn Memoriam

0 Comments
Posted August 13, 2014 at 7:41 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

With Kendall away, and we elves also having limited blogging time, now's your chance! If you were Kendall (or an elf) for a day, what entry or entries would you post at T19? In the comments, please provide links to any good articles, videos, sermons, etc. that you think T19 readers would enjoy and find edifying. Please provide more than just the link itself, but a sentence or two as to what the article, etc., is about, and why you recommend it. Thanks. -the elves

Filed under: * AdminFeatured (Sticky)* General Interest

9 Comments
Posted August 13, 2014 at 2:02 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



Filed under: * Culture-WatchMilitary / Armed Forces* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, Military* General InterestHumor / Trivia

1 Comments
Posted August 12, 2014 at 11:01 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Robin Williams died this morning, his publicist confirms. You can read a statement from his wife Susan Schneider there.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchMovies & Television* General InterestHumor / Trivia

1 Comments
Posted August 11, 2014 at 6:08 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

[hat tip to Pat Dague at Transfigurations, who has a nice photo of the super moon from her neck of the woods.]

Check out these two galleries of wonderful super moon photographs:
USA Today
The Independent

Filed under: * General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted August 11, 2014 at 10:38 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Expressing concern that his summer vacation is too quickly passing him by, local incoming seventh-grader Matthew Valentine told reporters Tuesday he now has just two weeks left in which to acquire a cool new identity before school starts.

The 13-year-old acknowledged that he must dedicate all his remaining free time to developing a socially acceptable persona he can display to his classmates, noting that he still has a lot of work to do if he is to assemble a recognizable combination of attitudes, style choices, interests, and favorite bands that will win his peers’ approval during the upcoming school year.

“The clock is ticking, and I still haven’t figured out who I’m going to be yet,” said Valentine, adding that he hopes to remake himself as a popular kid, a scenester, a rebel, a hip-hop head, or a member of some other respected social category prior to his first day of classes at Thomas Jefferson Middle School.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchEducationTeens / Youth* General InterestHumor / Trivia* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted August 6, 2014 at 3:31 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

I realize that people who talk at length about their pets are tedious at best, and often pitiful or repulsive. They post photos of their pets online, tell little stories about them, speak to them in disturbing falsettos, dress them in elaborate costumes and carry them around in handbags and BabyBjorns, have professional portraits taken of them and retouched to look like old master oil paintings. When people over the age of 10 invite you to a cat birthday party or a funeral for a dog, you need to execute a very deft etiquette maneuver, the equivalent of an Immelmann turn or triple axel, in order to decline without acknowledging that they are, in this area, insane.

This is especially true of childless people, like me, who tend to become emotionally overinvested in their animals and to dote on them in a way that gives onlookers the creeps. Often the pet seems to be a surrogate child, a desperate focus or joint project for a relationship that’s lost any other raison d’être, like becoming insufferable foodies or getting heavily into cosplay. When such couples finally have a child their cats or dogs are often bewildered to find themselves unceremoniously demoted to the status of pet; instead of licking the dinner plates clean and piling into bed with Mommy and Daddy, they’re given bowls of actual dog food and tied to a metal stake in a circle of dirt.

I looked up how much Americans spend on pets annually and have concluded that you do not want to know. I could tell you what I spent on my own cat’s special kidney health cat food and kidney and thyroid medication, and periodic blood tests that cost $300 and always came back normal, but I never calculated my own annual spending, lest I be forced to confront some uncomfortable facts about me. What our mass spending on products to pamper animals who seem happiest while rolling in feces or eating the guts out of rodents — who don’t, in fact, seem significantly less happy if they lose half their limbs — tells us about ourselves as a nation is probably also something we don’t want to know. But it occurs to me that it may be symptomatic of the same chronic deprivation as are the billion-dollar industries in romance novels and porn.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-Watch* General InterestAnimals* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted August 4, 2014 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



Filed under: * Culture-WatchMovies & TelevisionMusic* General InterestHumor / Trivia

3 Comments
Posted July 30, 2014 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Ricochet is a surfing superstar who helps teach the disabled to hang ten, too.

Watch it all from NBC.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & MedicinePsychology* General InterestAnimals

0 Comments
Posted July 28, 2014 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A new US geological survey indicates that some parts of the US are at an increased risk of earthquakes, especially along the east coast.

New seismic hazard maps updated for the first time since 2008 show highest risk west but also increased risk east.

"The eastern US has the potential for larger and more damaging earthquakes than considered in previous maps and assessments," the report states.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchScience & Technology* General InterestNatural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

1 Comments
Posted July 19, 2014 at 11:46 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all from Digg.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchMedia* General InterestHumor / Trivia* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK

0 Comments
Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:10 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all.


Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationMediaMenSports* General InterestHumor / Trivia* International News & CommentarySouth AmericaBrazil

0 Comments
Posted July 10, 2014 at 7:20 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

3. Encourage everyone to “take a step back”

There comes a point in most meetings where everyone is chiming in, except you. Opinions and data and milestones are being thrown around and you don’t know your CTA from your OTA. This is a great point to go, “Guys, guys, guys, can we take a step back here?” Everyone will turn their heads toward you, amazed at your ability to silence the fray. Follow it up with a quick, “What problem are we really trying to solve?” and, boom! You’ve bought yourself another hour of looking smart.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeLabor/Labor Unions/Labor Market* General InterestHumor / Trivia* TheologyAnthropology

0 Comments
Posted July 8, 2014 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

"Sometimes I'm asked to do both [magic and funerals] at once," said Lee, 76, a licensed funeral director from White Plains, New York. "People have come to know both sides of me, so they ask. And I say, why not?"

Lee, who long ago claimed the moniker "mortgician" in his AOL email address, wouldn't call himself a pioneer or part of any special movement in after-death care. But he's among many who are turning the idea of the solemn, sedate funeral on its head.

Call it the rise of the personalized "fun funeral."

The wide range of what's considered "creative" or "unusual" when burying a loved one means there are little to no statistics on such practices, but industry experts say redesigning the standard funeral is increasingly popular.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchMovies & TelevisionReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spending* General InterestHumor / Trivia* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

2 Comments
Posted July 6, 2014 at 6:18 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Just a wobble away - that's how close Tropical Storm Arthur will come Thursday to the Lowcountry.

Forecasters said the eye of the storm will pass 100 miles out to sea or closer. On Wednesday, the storm's winds extended 90 miles from the eye.

The National Weather Service's forecast Thursday night called for strong winds and rain squalls for Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester counties - harsher nearer the coast - but not tropical storm conditions.

Read it all.



Filed under: * General InterestNatural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.Weather* South Carolina

1 Comments
Posted July 3, 2014 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon


(Craige Borrett photo)

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of AustraliaChurch of Nigeria* General InterestPhotos/Photography* South Carolina

10 Comments
Posted June 29, 2014 at 5:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Even we Christians seem to have sidelined joy in entertainment to explore the bleaker side of reality. We find ourselves praising sad standups for what they can teach us about our faith. We binge-watch shows like Breaking Bad, House of Cards, and Mad Men for the way their broken characters and their brutal worlds will reveal the dark side of human nature. Yes, we've seen how recent heavy dramas can show us the real weight of sin and the moral consequences of our decisions, but these kinds of programs can't become our only tv obsessions.

Just as we proclaim a God of grace and justice, of love and law, Christians need balance in our pop culture engagement. So do our neighbors. We need the light of the funny, silly, and joyful to glow in the dark. Shiny-happy shows don't tell the full truth, but neither do shows that punch us in the face. We've spent enough time embracing suffering and being skeptical of joy and happiness. All the more so if, as C.S. Lewis said, "Joy is the serious business of heaven."

Fallon's spirit is no shtick. His joy has been there all along. As a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1998 to 2004, he notoriously broke character, holding back laughter in the background of a sketch or cracking a smile in the middle of a punch line. His critics cite these incidents as weaknesses. I think they prove how much he likes his job.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryMovies & TelevisionPsychologyReligion & CultureYoung Adults* General InterestHumor / Trivia* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesEvangelicals* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted June 26, 2014 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

While our friends from India traveled around California on business, they left their 11 year-old daughter with us. Curious about my going to church one Sunday morning, she decided to come along. When we returned home, my husband asked her what she thought of the service.

"I don't understand why the West Coast isn't included too," she replied. When we inquired what she meant, she added, "You know, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the whole East Coast."

--Ann Spivack in Reader's Digest

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* General InterestHumor / Trivia* TheologyThe Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit

0 Comments
Posted June 16, 2014 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Bats are being treated as though they are more important than worshippers, a Conservative peer has said, as he urged a fightback against churches being turned into “historic bat barns”.

Lord Cormack, a committed Christian, told the House of Lords that bats are a causing a "menace" to historic places of worship.

The former MP for South Staffordshire and Vice President of the National Churches Trust said the mammals were "a particular menace to many old churches" pointing to cases where "remarkable 15th-century brasses" were being corroded by bat droppings.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchHistoryReligion & CultureRural/Town Life* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* General InterestAnimals* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK

1 Comments
Posted June 13, 2014 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchAging / the ElderlySports* General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted June 11, 2014 at 11:28 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

So delighted to see"A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder" win Best Musical. We saw it and recoomended it last year BEFORE it opened. Do please put it on your list and check out the other winners.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchMusicTheatre/Drama/PlaysUrban/City Life and Issues* General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted June 9, 2014 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Auckland's best-known Anglican Church is shutting its doors for three months after Sunday morning's service so it can undergo a facelift.

The Holy Trinity Cathedral in Parnell has hosted the funerals of Sir Edmund Hillary, Sir Paul Homes and Sir Paul Reeves.

More than 100,000 people attend the church each year.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* General InterestNatural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.* International News & CommentaryAustralia / NZ

0 Comments
Posted June 7, 2014 at 2:26 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

My several years in the word game have learnt me several rules:

Avoid alliteration. Always.
Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.
Avoid cliches like the plague. (They're old hat.)
Employ the vernacular.
Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPoetry & Literature* General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted June 3, 2014 at 6:46 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Despite local married couple Jim and Nancy McFadden’s recent decision to seek new romantic partners while still staying together, sources reported Monday that the rest of the world’s population is not exactly jumping at the chance to partake in the open relationship. “No thanks, we’re good,” 7.1 billion global inhabitants of every age, race, and sexual orientation reportedly said "no thanks, we're good"...

Heh--Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationMarriage & FamilyPsychology* General InterestHumor / Trivia* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted June 3, 2014 at 3:19 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A group of Anglicans in a small Canterbury community are vowing to take the battle for Christ Church Cathedral to the court of public opinion after a judge lifted a stay on a planned demolition of the 110-year-old building.

Justice Graham Panckhurst released findings on Friday lifting the stay on demolition of the cathedral.

However a small group of Anglicans say the fight is not over.

Akaroa resident Mike Norris organised a group of parishioners to meet and discuss what the decision meant for their battle to restore the cathedral.

"This is the beginning of the next stage of the campaign," he said. "We have gone through the courts, which has not advanced our cause, now it is time to go through the court of public opinion."

Read it all.

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

0 Comments
Posted May 31, 2014 at 12:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The High Court has permitted the deconstruction of the earthquake-damaged Christchurch Cathedral, but the Anglican Church says it won't happen any time soon.

Justice Graham Panckhurst yesterday lifted a stay against the Anglican Church taking the iconic stone building down before it had committed to building a new cathedral.

It wants to reduce it to a height of two to three metres and build another cathedral in Cathedral Square, but that was fought by the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust.

Read it all.

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

0 Comments
Posted May 30, 2014 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



I wanted the picture for my father, a Navy Veteran, and he insisted I got in the shot--KSH. You may read more about the remarkable Robert Besal there.

Filed under: * By Kendall* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, Military* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

1 Comments
Posted May 27, 2014 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Look through them all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchHistory* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted May 26, 2014 at 1:15 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all--simply amazing. From the basement of a drug dealer, go figure.

Filed under: * General InterestAnimalsPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted May 25, 2014 at 12:35 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

This is just wow--watch it all.

Filed under: * General InterestAnimalsPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryCanada

0 Comments
Posted May 21, 2014 at 6:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all.


"Take from us all doubt and mistrust. Lift our thoughts up to thee...." as the prayer said this morning. Don't miss the shot in the middle of Saint Paul's Cathedral. Watch it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchUrban/City Life and Issues* General InterestPhotos/Photography* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK

2 Comments
Posted May 15, 2014 at 1:34 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



Watch it all. The Wash. Post wrote up the background:
Sorry, if the pivotal episode of your favorite TV show is on and a tornado warning is issued, TV stations can, should, and will cut in and cut off programming to provide potentially life-saving storm coverage.

Typically, the shows are streamed online, either in real-time or after the fact for your viewing pleasure.

But that never stops some angry viewers from bombarding stations with nasty complaints over missing such indispensable shows as Grey’s Anatomy and Big Bang. They sometimes take the form of obscenity-laden tirades. Gawker reproduces some of these selfish missives, too profane to share here.

Monday morning, something beautiful happened. KSFY anchor Nancy Naeve – out of Sioux Falls, South Dakota – spoke her mind on this disgusting practice...


Filed under: * Culture-WatchMediaMovies & Television* General InterestWeather* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted May 15, 2014 at 11:08 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

'Despair, or folly?' said Gandalf. 'It is not despair, for despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt. We do not. It is wisdom to recognize necessity, when all other courses have been weighed, though as folly it may appear to those who cling to false hope. Well, let folly be our cloak, a veil before the eyes of the Enemy!
--J.R.R. Tolkien The Fellowship of the Ring: Being the First Part of The Lord of the Rings (Mariner Books 2012 reissue of the 1954 original), p. 302 (emphasis mine)

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBooks* General InterestNotable & Quotable* TheologyAnthropologyChristologyEschatology

2 Comments
Posted May 15, 2014 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

After three deployments to Iraq and three to Afghanistan, Staff Sgt. Dennis Swols is agitated, prone to bouts of anger and unable to really talk about his time on the battlefield.

But as Swols sits in a small office in the Robinson Health Clinic at Fort Bragg, his hand drops to the furry head beside him and his mood brightens. Settled at his feet, Lexy, a 5-year-old German shepherd, gives Swols a few moments of distraction.

It's her job. And, according to Swols, she's good at it.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & MedicinePsychologyStress* Economics, PoliticsDefense, National Security, Military* General InterestAnimals* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

1 Comments
Posted May 14, 2014 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Check it out (Hat tip:TF).

Filed under: * General InterestAnimalsHumor / TriviaPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted May 9, 2014 at 5:16 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

April was one of the most successful months in the South Carolina Aquarium's 14-year history, thanks to a rare visit from a band of dancing mermaids.

The aquarium, which is a nonprofit organization, saw record attendance during the month it played host to the World Famous Mermaids of Florida's Weeki Wachee Springs State Park, a team of female entertainers who wear elaborate fish-tailed costumes and perform synchronized underwater dances.

Read it all from the local paper and you have to love the picture.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomy* General InterestAnimals* South Carolina

0 Comments
Posted May 4, 2014 at 4:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



Well done, good and faithful servant.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* General InterestPhotos/Photography* South Carolina

2 Comments
Posted May 4, 2014 at 3:28 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

...[The] church has started an appeal to raise £160,000 for repairs following the winter storms.

St Phillip and St James in Leckhampton is 130 years old and grade-II listed but is no longer wind and watertight.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* General InterestWeather

0 Comments
Posted May 4, 2014 at 1:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



We took this one just as we were leaving Camp St. Christopher after celebrating our 27th anniversary. What can I say? The children got their mother's genes.

Filed under: * By KendallHarmon Family* Culture-WatchMarriage & Family* General InterestPhotos/Photography

3 Comments
Posted April 29, 2014 at 6:50 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



I deny any knowledge whatsoever of the people in this photograph.

Filed under: * By KendallHarmon Family* Culture-WatchMarriage & Family* General InterestPhotos/Photography

3 Comments
Posted April 26, 2014 at 12:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



For those interested you may read a lot more about Camp Saint Christopher there.

Filed under: * By Kendall* General InterestAnimalsPhotos/Photography* South Carolina

0 Comments
Posted April 26, 2014 at 11:01 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

You know those lonely nights and weekends when you're left to your own devices and forced to entertain yourself? Maybe you ponder the meaning of life, maybe you tackle a creative project or maybe you -- wait, let's face it: You probably turn on Netflix. Well your dog faces the same lonely existential crisis and his solution is, naturally, solo fetch.

Hey, it's better than destroying your shoes.

We put together a compilation above of pooches tossing the old ball/stick around by themselves, and uh, to themselves.

This is just wonderful--Enjoy it all--KSH.

Filed under: * General InterestAnimals

0 Comments
Posted April 26, 2014 at 8:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch it all from Jimmy Fallon.

Filed under: * General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted April 25, 2014 at 4:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Look at them all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsEaster* Culture-WatchGlobalization* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted April 20, 2014 at 7:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

there are 14 in all--check them out.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsHoly Week* Culture-WatchGlobalization* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted April 18, 2014 at 3:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Enjoy all 49 of them.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch Year / Liturgical SeasonsHoly WeekLiturgy, Music, Worship* Culture-WatchGlobalization* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted April 14, 2014 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In a conflict that pits animal welfare against religious rights, Denmark has ordered that all food animals must be stunned before being killed. The move effectively bans the ritual slaughter methods prescribed in both Muslim and Jewish tradition.

Read or listen to it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & CultureViolence* Economics, PoliticsPolitics in General* General InterestAnimals* International News & CommentaryEuropeDenmark* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 10, 2014 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Enjoy it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchChildrenHistoryMusic* General Interest* International News & CommentaryEuropeAustria

0 Comments
Posted April 6, 2014 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In the Night | Andrew Peterson, Buddy Greene, Jeff Taylor, Andy Gullahorn from Laity Lodge on Vimeo.



Listen to it all--it is just wonderful.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeLiturgy, Music, Worship* Culture-WatchMusic* General Interest

1 Comments
Posted April 1, 2014 at 3:16 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Tenuous connection to reality or not, Harmon says he is excited about combining exercise with his diet. “Now that I won’t be spending nine, ten, eleven hours a day parked in front of a computer working on this stupid blog, I can spend more time on my pilates.” Neighbors even claim they have been awakened in pre-dawn hours by the sound of Tae-Bo tapes, coming from Harmon’s residence.

“He used to be such a nice boy,” said Mrs. Mildred Kratz, an across-the-street neighbor of Harmon’s. “Always blogging. I’d see him in the yard and say, ‘Now Kendall, you need to get back in there and blog. That blog’s not going to write itself!’ And we’d just laugh and laugh. Nowadays, the only time I see him is when he walks down the driveway to get the mail, and even then, he doesn’t speak… just makes a big point to flex his glutes as he walks back inside.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet* General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted April 1, 2014 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When it comes to April Fools’ Day, human ingenuity seems to know no limits. Let me list a few of my favourite hoaxes and pranks from April the 1st:

• The full-page advertisement by Burger King announcing the arrival of the Left-Handed Whopper burger, ‘especially designed for the 32 million left-handed Americans’.
• The statement that the next Popemobile would be pulled by a donkey.
• The announcement from Virgin Atlantic that they would launch an Airbus with a transparent viewing strip on the bottom, so that passengers could look straight down onto clouds.

Read it all.

Filed under: * General InterestHumor / Trivia* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK

0 Comments
Posted April 1, 2014 at 5:50 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

1976 At precisely 9:47 am on April 1, Pluto will pass behind Jupiter, causing a brief reduction in Earth's gravitational pull. Astronomer Patrick Moore urges his BBC Radio audience to jump into the air at that exact moment to experience a floating sensation. At 9:48, dozens of light-headed listeners begin calling the station to report their success.

Read it all.

Filed under: * General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted April 1, 2014 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A special undercover investigation has revealed that Justin's Welby's Father, who is well-known now to have been a sort of Walter Mitty character, not only reinvented himself numerous times but changed his name on multiple occasions. His real family name was in fact Thyme.

There are possibilities, also, that Justin Thyme has a secret and unknown half-brother Steppen Thyme but these are as yet uncorroborated.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* General InterestHumor / Trivia

2 Comments
Posted April 1, 2014 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The escalating slaughter of elephants and rhinos is drawing the anger of conservationist clerics, who have begun enlisting church members in the battle to save Africa’s wildlife.

The clerics are driven by a view that these animals are God’s gifts to nature and a critical part of Africa’s heritage.

In Kenya, their concerns heightened in mid-March after the conservation group Wildlife Direct said 16 rhinos had been gunned down in the first three months of the year. More than 30 elephants have also been slaughtered since January.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* General InterestAnimals* International News & CommentaryAfrica* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted March 26, 2014 at 11:29 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

RNS: You describe the ways Christians try to work harder to please God. Is this the same challenge the Pharisees faced?

LS: The church today says the same thing the Pharisees did: “Come unto me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you . .. . more work.” Actually, these are Jesus’ words, but he promised tranquility, not toil. To become a disciple of Jesus in today’s church is almost to be sentenced to hard labor, so far are we removed from the Hebrew understanding of life as Shabbat Shalom. It’s time to trade in our hard hats or pin stripes for a pinata … with some confetti thrown in.

In the earliest creation story, the first time we meet God, God is down and dirty–playing in the dirt, making mud pies, getting God’s hands dirty and wet, fashioning us in the divine image for the sheer pleasure of our company. Creation is not God at work, but God at play. Labor enters the story with the fall, and we prefer work to play because there is an out-of-control and surprise element to play.

We need to learn to play at life again. All beauty, artistry, excellence comes out of a play paradigm, not a work paradigm. When you work at something, whether it be life or relationships, sports or art, you’re forcing something to be rigid and mechanical that should be natural and pleasurable. We make it harder than it needs to be. Being the church doesn’t require us to earn God’s favor through deeds and acts. All we need to do is worship God in joy and pleasure. This is our nature. This is who we were meant to be.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted March 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Nebraska is truly a flyover state for millions of snow geese, sandhill cranes and other migratory birds traveling north from south of the border during early spring. The area has become world famous for bird watchers who themselves migrate to the Audubon's Rowe Sanctuary along Nebraska's Platte River to see and hear the birds up close.

Watch the whole thrilling video (under three minutes) and please enjoy this one also.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEnergy, Natural Resources* General InterestAnimalsWeather* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted March 21, 2014 at 3:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

...the earthquake also had quieter consequences that didn't make headlines. In the London Review of Books, Richard Lloyd Parry investigates a peculiar phenomenon revealed in the aftermath of the storm. His piece is called "Ghosts of the Tsunami."

RICHARD LLOYD PARRY: People reported neighbors - neighbors who died in the tsunami - appearing at their houses and coming and sitting down in puddles of water.

MARTIN: Parry has lived in Japan for 18 years and has known it to be a mostly secular culture. In global polls, Japan ranks as one of the least religious countries in the world.

PARRY: But there's a bit more to it than that. I mean I'd got used to seeing, in the homes of friends, these little altars you find to the family ancestors. And I'd always assumed they were nothing much more than a quaint piece of interior decoration. But I realized in following this story and returning to the tsunami zone, that actually the religion of the ancestors is alive and well and very strong.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchChildrenMarriage & Family* General InterestNatural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.* International News & CommentaryAsiaJapan

0 Comments
Posted March 20, 2014 at 3:41 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Surging prices for food staples from coffee to meat to vegetables are driving up the cost of groceries in the U.S., pinching consumers and companies that are still grappling with a sluggish economic recovery.

Federal forecasters estimate retail food prices will rise as much as 3.5% this year, the biggest annual increase in three years, as drought in parts of the U.S. and other producing regions drives up prices for many agricultural goods. The Bureau of Labor Statistics on Tuesday reported that food prices gained 0.4% in February from the previous month, the biggest increase since September 2011, as prices rose for meat, poultry, fish, dairy and eggs.

Globally, food inflation has been tame, but economists are watching for any signs of tighter supplies of key commodities such as wheat and rice that could push prices higher.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchDieting/Food/Nutrition* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinanceThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* General InterestWeather

0 Comments
Posted March 18, 2014 at 5:09 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Bats are making life unbearable for congregations by defecating on worshippers from roofs as well as bell towers, according to a report to the Church Buildings Council of the Church of England.

“Bats in churches are no joke for those who have to clean up the mess behind,” said Anne Sloman, chair of the council. “Their presence in large numbers is making it impossible for us to open churches for a whole variety of social and community uses as well as making life miserable for worshippers, and we are seriously worried about the irreparable damage bats are causing to priceless church artifacts.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeLiturgy, Music, WorshipParish Ministry* General InterestAnimals

0 Comments
Posted March 13, 2014 at 3:51 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Captain Dave Anderson of Capt. Dave's Dolphin and Whale Safari in Dana Point, California, at great personal risk, has recently filmed and edited a 5-minute video that contains some of the most beautiful, jaw-dropping, footage ever taken with a drone from the air of a huge mega-pod of thousands of common dolphins stampeding off Dana Point, California, three gray whales migrating together down the coast off San Clemente, California, and heartwarming close-ups hovering over a newborn Humpback whale calf snuggling and playing with its mom as an escort whale stands guard nearby, filmed recently in Maui.

It is only about 5 1/3 minutes long-- it all.

Filed under: * General InterestAnimalsPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted March 9, 2014 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The religious slaughter of animals should be banned if Muslims and Jews refuse to adopt more humane methods of killing, the new leader of Britain’s vets has said.

John Blackwell, president-elect of the British Veterinary Association, said that the traditional practice of slitting animals’ throats and allowing them to bleed to death for halal and kosher meat caused unnecessary suffering.

He urged Jews and Muslims to allow poultry, sheep and cattle to be stunned unconscious before they are killed. If the two faiths refuse, Mr Blackwell wants ministers to consider following the example of Denmark by banning the slaughter of animals that are not stunned first.

Read it all (subscription required).

Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* General InterestAnimals* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsIslamJudaism* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

1 Comments
Posted March 7, 2014 at 1:46 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Hamish Ogston pledged the money to the Anglican Church shortly after the February 2011 quake and, after seeing nothing had been done with the building, has reiterated his offer.

Mr Ogston says there is only a $15 million shortfall after his pledge, other offers and insurance money.

Read it all.

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

0 Comments
Posted March 3, 2014 at 3:25 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Please watch it all from Jimmy Kimmel--very funny.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchMediaMovies & Television* General InterestHumor / TriviaWeather

2 Comments
Posted March 2, 2014 at 1:46 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It was early in the spring about 15 years ago—a day of pale sunlight and trees just beginning to bud. I was a young police reporter, driving to a scene I didn’t want to see. A man, the police dispatcher’s broadcast said, had accidentally backed his pickup truck over his baby granddaughter in the driveway of the family home. It was a fatality.

As I parked among police cars and TV news cruisers, I saw a stocky, white-haired man in cotton work clothes standing near a pickup. Cameras were trained on him, and reporters were sticking microphones in his face. Looking totally bewildered,he was trying to answer their questions. Mostly he was only moving his lips, blinking, and choking up.

After a while, the reporters gave up and followed the police into the small white house. I can still picture that devastated old man looking down at the place in the driveway where the child had been. Beside the house was a freshly spaded flower bed and nearby a pile of dark, rich earth.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchChildrenMarriage & FamilyMedia* General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted March 2, 2014 at 1:30 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon



This is simply stunning--take the 2 1/2 minutes to watch it all.

Filed under: * General InterestPhotos/PhotographyWeather

0 Comments
Posted March 1, 2014 at 4:04 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In 2004, The New Yorker magazine quoted the screenwriter Dennis Klein as saying that Mr. Ramis rescued comedies from “their smooth, polite perfection” by offering a new, rough-hewn originality. The writer of the article, Tad Friend, compared Mr. Ramis’s impact on comedy to that of Elvis Presley on rock and Eminem on rap.

“More than anyone else,” Paul Weingarten wrote in The Chicago Tribune Magazine in 1983, “Harold Ramis has shaped this generation’s ideas of what is funny.”

Read it all.


Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / Funerals* Culture-WatchHistoryHunger/MalnutritionMovies & Television* General InterestHumor / Trivia

0 Comments
Posted February 24, 2014 at 5:58 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by The_Elves

M42: Live View Optical Zoom from Isidro Villo on Vimeo.



Filed under: * General InterestPhotos/Photography

0 Comments
Posted February 24, 2014 at 8:52 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Like something out of a science-fiction flick, the four-rotor apparatus looks the part of an oversize, mechanical dragonfly.

A distinct hum similar to the insect exudes from the gadget when it hovers at eye level. The buzz fades to silence in seconds when the device darts skyward and nearly out of sight.

A small camera captures all that lies within its line of vision - in this instance, a mix of cobblestone, historic homes and church steeples that comprise Charleston's French Quarter.

No, this contraption isn't being maneuvered by engineers on some military testing site. It isn't soaring beside airplanes at a local airport. It's under the control of a 27-year-old College of Charleston student killing time on a sunny afternoon.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spending* General InterestPhotos/Photography* South Carolina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted February 24, 2014 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The power is finally back on for everyone in South Carolina after the ice storm 10 days ago.

The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina said Saturday morning that their members had finished all their repairs on the grid, getting electricity to the final 200 customers that had been without power since the winter storm on Feb. 12 and 13.

Officials say there still may be scattered outages from the storm with people who will have to repair the wiring going into their own homes.

Read it all.


Filed under: * General InterestWeather* South Carolina

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Posted February 22, 2014 at 5:55 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Anglican Church in Burundi has joined the government and other aid agencies in the country in providing aid to victims of the flood disaster that hit the country’s capital Bujumbura about two weeks ago.

A member of the church’s communications team Nasasagare Guy, told ACNS in an interview today: “The church here is still dealing with emergency situation. We’re responding to the needs of the victims by providing food and clothing donated by Christians in our church.”

On the night of February 9, Bujumbura experienced what the locals felt were some of the “heaviest thunderstorms and rainfall in contemporary history.” Over 150 people were reported dead and hundreds were injured after the torrential rains washed whole hillsides away.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Burundi* Culture-Watch* General InterestNatural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc.* International News & CommentaryAfricaBurundi* TheologyPastoral Theology

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Posted February 22, 2014 at 12:59 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Some stunning images of the Great Lakes have been captured this winter, as large portions of the massive bodies of water frozen were almost completely froze over for the first time in two decades.

The intense cold snap that gripped much of central Canada and the United States throughout the winter brought thick and widespread ice to the Great Lakes region.

Read it all and look at all the images.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchScience & Technology* General InterestPhotos/PhotographyWeather

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Posted February 22, 2014 at 12:16 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

CITY UNSURE WHY THE SEWER SMELLS

AT LAST SINGER ETTA JAMES DIES

CASE OF INNOCENT MAN FREED AFTER SPENDING 18 YEARS IN PRISON PROVES THE TEXAS SYSTEM WORKS

BRITISH LEFT WAFFLES ON FALKLANDS

Reader's Digest, March 2014 edition, page 23

Filed under: * Culture-WatchMedia* General InterestHumor / Trivia

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Posted February 21, 2014 at 10:46 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Watch and listen to it all. Lyrics:

Through trials, troubles and care
I know Jesus my savior is there
Giving me faith through darkest days
Keeping me on the narrow way

Jesus savior, help me each day
Fill me with hope, fill me with faith
Darkness retreats at the touch of Your hand
Jesus savior, help me to stand

esus lived through darkest pain
Rejected by men, despising the shame
Man of sorrows, acquainted with grief
He gave his life so we may be free

Jesus savior, help me each day
Fill me with hope, fill me with faith
Darkness retreats at the touch of Your hand
Jesus savior, help me to stand

I know that Jesus died for me
Cancelled my debt at Calvary
Rose from the dead, unlocked Heaven's door
Trust in his love and live evermore

Jesus savior, help me each day
Fill me with hope, fill me with faith
Darkness retreats at the touch of Your hand
Jesus savior, help me to stand

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeLiturgy, Music, Worship* Culture-WatchMusicReligion & Culture* General Interest

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Posted February 20, 2014 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Justified, one of television’s best shows, engages with the rather alien subculture of snake-handling in a way that contrasts favorably to the gloating I saw over the death of Pastor Coots. We can mock such people for their willful ignorance of the science of human origins or the textual criticism of the original form of Mark, but we can also appreciate that this same stubborn faith is one that says all people are created in the image of God.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryDeath / Burial / FuneralsMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchReligion & CultureRural/Town Life* General InterestAnimals

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Posted February 19, 2014 at 6:09 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]




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