RECENT COMMENTS

By Karen B. on September 23, 2014 at 1:17 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (LA Times) Ebola could extend its life in humans, mutating+making fighting it harder

Important new article about Ebola in the New England Journal of Medicine:
http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1411100

Key quote:
Assuming no change in the control measures for this epidemic, by November 2, 2014, the cumulative reported numbers of confirmed and probable cases are predicted to be 5740 in Guinea, 9890 in Liberia, and 5000 in Sierra Leone, exceeding 20,000 in total.  The true case load, including suspected cases and undetected cases, will be higher still.



By Karen B. on September 23, 2014 at 12:58 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (LA Times) Ebola could extend its life in humans, mutating+making fighting it harder

I’ve been keeping track of the statistics from each of the WHO’s Ebola
Situation reports.  One thing I’ve found very helpful and revealing is
to calculate the average number of new Ebola cases per day in each of
the three countries.*  Of course, some of the change could be more
complete reporting, but still, the increase in number of cases per day
is very telling:

Mid-July
Guinea:  1 new case reported per day
Liberia: 7 new cases reported per day
Sierra Leone:  9 new cases reported per day
TOTAL: 17 new cases per day


mid-August:
Guinea:  14 new cases reported per day
Liberia:  51 new cases reported per day
Sierra Leone:  20 new cases reported per day
TOTAL:  86 new cases per day (also includes Nigeria)


mid September:
Guinea:  17 new cases reported per day
Liberia:  80 - 100 cases reported per day
      (last week’s rate was 105 new cases per day, this week’s rate is currently 78…)
Sierra Leone:  35 - 40 new cases per day
TOTAL:
- last week: 160 new cases per day (the highest reported level so far)
- this week: currently averaging 130 cases per day… but that’s likely to go higher with new data expected from Liberia & Sierra Leone)

*I’m calculating these rates by dividing the total change in cumulative cases per country between reports by the number of days since the prior report.  WHO is generally issuing two reports per week (generally Tuesdays and Fridays).  The data I’ve cited above comes from the periods July 18 - 24 / August 16 - 22 / Sept 12 - 18 & Sept 19 - 23.



By dwstroudmd+ on September 23, 2014 at 12:08 pm [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

“Together, we have navigated a season of extraordinary change in recent years.  Our Christian values have been challenged and we are becoming clearer and more confident about the faith we share.”  KJS
Consider this sequence Browning, Griswold, and Schori whilst contemplating the effects of their incumbencies, their navigation, and their changes.  One can certainly concur that their “Christian values” were challenged by the secular culture and zeitgeist and they caved and made all the clearer that “the faith” thus promulgated was not The Faith once delivered. 

Does not bode well for the future, but the “boys” will have to take their seats on the front row instead of manipulating from behind.  Even Humboldt squishops will be identifiable then!



By David Keller on September 23, 2014 at 12:01 pm [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

#4—That is why I am in PEARUSA/ACNA.  I have been to two national conventions and two diocesan/network conventions and all we do is worship and praise.  Our only business is a budget and, originally, a charter which we haven’t changed. We don’t have resolutions about anything and our PB is also a diocesan/network bishop. Its more Acts than Kings!



By Undergroundpewster on September 23, 2014 at 11:41 am [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

The Book of Kings may be a good place to look for what to expect. Who is there who will tear down the sacred poles, who is there who will stop the worship of Baal, and who is there who will stop the sacrifice of children?

One bad ruler after another is probably what we should expect.



By Undergroundpewster on September 23, 2014 at 11:35 am [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

The Book of Kings may be a good place to look for what to expect. Who is there who will tear down the sacred poles, who is there who will stop the worship of Baal, and who is there who will stop the sacrifice of children?

One bad ruler after another is probably what we should expect.



By Hursley on September 23, 2014 at 11:20 am [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

Thank you for the reminder, David, though I am actually well aware of this. However, the Biblical precedent set in the Books of Kings about noting the facts of one bad ruler before moving on to the next strikes me as a part of the work of the faithful. I fully expect someone as theologically inept and destructive, whatever the veneer may look like. I pray for the opposite.

Above it all, of course, God remains firmly enthroned. That continues to be my pole-star in all of this and saves me from being a perpetual Gloomy Gus.



By sophy0075 on September 23, 2014 at 11:12 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Wash. Post) U.S. expands war against Islamic State with risk-laden airstrikes in Syria

How can Qatar be considered a “partner nation” to the West, when it funds terrorists? http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/qatar/11110430/Funding-terrorists-is-not-what-friends-do.html



By David Keller on September 23, 2014 at 10:59 am [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

#2—Be careful what you ask for. I can’t tolerate KJS, but what you get may be (and probably will be) worse.



By Hursley on September 23, 2014 at 10:52 am [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

Thank heavens for this. What an era of destruction, willfulness, and arrogance.



By Undergroundpewster on September 23, 2014 at 9:37 am [comment link]
From the entry: TEC Presiding Bishop announces she will not stand for reelection

Let the games begin!



By Jeremy Bonner on September 23, 2014 at 7:11 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Bloomberg) South Sudan’s Boy Soldiers Swap Schoolbooks for Kalashnikovs

How did we get to this point? It really does make one wonder if remaining within Sudan would actually have served southerners and northerners better. It would certainly have helped secure the rights of Christians in Sudan (now with few protections) but it might also have helped keep the various groups in South Sudan from each other’s throats.



By J. Champlin on September 22, 2014 at 5:00 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (NPR) "God's story doesn't need to be True to Be Believed"

The Yale University Professor ought to know better. While it makes perfect sense to affirm God as a truth of practical reason (or something like that), that’s a subtle point that doesn’t translate well into sound bites. To conflate that with an ersatz narrative theology (“God is an idea that is made intelligible only thanks to the stories we tell about him”) is basically to reduce faith to little more than, “it works for me.” It’s a very appealing way for card-carrying utilitarians (and that’s NPR) to assimilate and trivialize faith. Shame on those who give sophisticated cover for it.



By bettcee on September 22, 2014 at 4:19 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Telegraph) How Qatar is funding the rise of Islamist extremists

wvanglican: Thanks for correcting me, I knew I should have looked that up.



By Jeff Walton on September 22, 2014 at 2:33 pm [comment link]
From the entry: Marvin Olasky on the Anchoress--Blogging toward humility

She’s a great person to follow on Twitter—lively and informative.



By wvanglican on September 22, 2014 at 11:58 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Telegraph) How Qatar is funding the rise of Islamist extremists

Actually it was “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”.  Leonid Brezhnev was long dead.



By CBH on September 22, 2014 at 10:49 am [comment link]
From the entry: (NPR) "God's story doesn't need to be True to Be Believed"

Sounds like something the ABC might say.  Or the PB of TEC. 
Good grief! I am losing patience with lukewarm Christians.  So, therefore, I don’t believe I shall read the entire piece.  Sorry.



By Pb on September 22, 2014 at 9:14 am [comment link]
From the entry: (NPR) "God's story doesn't need to be True to Be Believed"

What about belief in Jesus?  Another good story?



By Katherine on September 22, 2014 at 9:06 am [comment link]
From the entry: Karenna Gore and Serene Jones--Religions for the Earth: Redefining the Climate Crisis

A hysterical article from uninformed writers.  The Wall St. Journal published an informed article by Steven E. Koonin, a reputable and long-experienced researcher in the field, which points out how little scientific certainty there is in the field, not nearly enough to drive public policy options.  (I hope the link is not subscriber-only.)



By Katherine on September 22, 2014 at 8:59 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Bloomberg) Ebola Worst-Case Scenario Has More Than 500,000 Cases

Thanks for that link, Karen B.  Troubling indeed.



By Capt. Father Warren on September 22, 2014 at 8:53 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Telegraph) How Qatar is funding the rise of Islamist extremists

Right on all counts.



By Karen B. on September 22, 2014 at 5:56 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Bloomberg) Ebola Worst-Case Scenario Has More Than 500,000 Cases

Here’s a link to a really interesting site put together by researchers at Columbia University showing various projections for Ebola, by country and combined
http://cpid.iri.columbia.edu/ebola.html

You can see best case (improved); “no change”; worst case (degraded) scenarios for infections & mortality through early November.  You can slide the history timeline to see how the shape of the curve has changed over time, i.e. what the best / worst case scenarios looked like in early August versus what they look like now.

Deeply troubling…



By bettcee on September 21, 2014 at 11:16 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Telegraph) How Qatar is funding the rise of Islamist extremists

Qatar is not the only country sending arms to terrorists. The United States Congress has just naively passed the McKeon Amendment and is sending arms and support to the Syrian Rebels who are fighting Assad in the unfounded belief that they will also fight ISIL. 
Maybe we should quit pointing fingers and examine the actions of our country because we seem to be doing the same thing over and over again with the same result.
If my memory is correct our country demanded a regime change in Afghanistan and after that the Taliban came back to fight there.
Our country demanded a regime change in Libya and the result worked to the advantage of the Terrorists.
Our President demanded a regime change in IRAQ deposed an elected Prime Minister, and the result worked to the advantage of the Sunni Islamic State Terrorists.
Our President demands a regime change in Syria and the result is the emergence of The Sunni Islamist State Terrorists in Syria and IRAQ
I can’t remember a time in the past when a president demanded that other countries change their regime. Ronald Reagan said “Tear down this wall Mr. Breshnev” and he got much better results than he would have if he had demanded a regime change from Russia.



By Pageantmaster ن on September 21, 2014 at 11:06 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

I have found the articles I read which go into whether the confessional has any privilege from disclosure in English law:

1. ‘Articles 8 & 9 and the “seal of the confessional”: are communications between clergy and penitents privileged?’ - Frank Cranmer; and

2. ‘Oz Anglicans reject seal of confessional’ - David Pocklington.

Both helpful and worth a read for anyone interested in this topic.



By Charles52 on September 21, 2014 at 10:46 pm [comment link]
From the entry: Marvin Olasky on the Anchoress--Blogging toward humility

Unfortunately,  Elizabeth can be very wrong,  then doubles down attacking her commenters. 

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/theanchoress/2014/09/09/dolan-is-charged-to-model-christ-not-the-pharisees/

This is an apologetic for Card. Dolan endorsing the gay group marching in the St. Patrick’s Day parade.



By Pageantmaster ن on September 21, 2014 at 10:39 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

I am no expert but did read something recently that suggested that there never had been or at least has not been for a very long time a blanket exemption for priests in the CofE from reporting knowledge of serious crime to the authorities, where the law so requires.  If only I could remember where I read it.  I see Wikipedia [which is always right] goes into some detail on similar ground.

Moreover on basic principles, the oath to the monarch would presumably include obedience to her laws which in any event as citizens, or residents within the realm, priests are subject to.

An interesting area, the conflict between church law and state law, which of course was something St Thomas-a-Becket went to some pains to explore.

Personally, it seems to me to be an abuse of the confessional for a miscreant to use it to seek absolution without then going to the appropriate authorities to make amends; and in so neglecting, to place the church into complicit silence to the continued suffering and in many cases continued abuse of the victims or the imperilling of other citizens of the state.    I see nothing very Christian or very pastoral in that - rather an act of shame and in the case of children causing them to stumble [Matthew 18:6].

I suspect that the Anglican seal of the confessional is one of those areas where what is actually the case differs from what is commonly thought, much like ‘common law marriage’ [non-existent in English law] or ‘sanctuary’ in a church [finally abolished before the 20th Century and always limited in scope].



By David Keller on September 21, 2014 at 4:53 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (NPR) Should The U.S. Pay Ransom For ISIS Hostages?

By way of clarification, I believe we should crush those who take hostages and take all reasonable measures to resue those taken hostage. We have been at this since the inception of our Republic. The Barabry pirates were, afterall, Muslims who wanted tribute. Thomas Jefferson with the help of The Navy and the Marine Corps crushed them. Too bad BHO got his early education in Jakarta, and missed the classes on American history.



By Terry Tee on September 21, 2014 at 3:23 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Jeremy it holds true for secular (these days we would say diocesan) clergy for two reasons 1) as a safeguard against abuse of power by the superior 2) because it might inhibit a superior who might want to institute disciplinary action.

Regarding lay employees I am not aware of direct prohibition, however you might like to note that a priest who absolves a lay person with whom he is involved in sexual misconduct himself incurs a sin which can only be absolved by the Holy See.  It is thus one of a rare category of reserved sins.



By David Keller on September 21, 2014 at 3:21 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (NPR) Should The U.S. Pay Ransom For ISIS Hostages?

Double no.



By Nikolaus on September 21, 2014 at 3:11 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

“What does it matter” or “what difference does it make” are the backbones of revisionism.



By Jeremy Bonner on September 21, 2014 at 1:14 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Father Terry,

I was aware that this was true for religious communities. Does it also hold for relationships between secular clergy and where clergy are direct superiors of laypeople?



By Terry Tee on September 21, 2014 at 12:01 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Regarding Sarah’s point above, it is already part of RC canon law that a superior cannot hear subordinates’ confessions except in situations where death is imminent eg a novice master cannot hear the confession of novices.



By tjmcmahon on September 21, 2014 at 11:22 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

(Dr. Bonner at #4) “if the principle is conceded by the state church, then it will put increased pressure on Rome and the Orthodox to do the same”

I think that it might, at some point, prompt Parliament to pass yet another anti-Catholic law to try to force Catholic and Orthodox priests to follow the example of the CoE, but I suspect that will in turn lead to a lot of Catholic priests in jail for contempt of court (or whatever the British equivalent is), as opposed to a change in doctrine.

Regardless of what a godless Parliament might do, in the short term, I think the impact will be to influence whatever tiny number of Anglo Catholics remain in the CoE to swim the Tiber either via the Ordinariate or some more conventional means.  The current ABoC and the other leadership of the CoE have made it unquestionably evident that they would be just as happy if the CoE were purged of its Traditionalist elements.  Since almost all remaining Anglo Catholics will be leaving in any case due to the vote on women bishops, they are clearing the church of the other things not approved of by liberal “Evangelicals” (who in reality are as Evangelical as affirming catholics are catholic).



By Sarah on September 21, 2014 at 10:02 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

RE: “Perhaps it should be made a rule that a confessor should not be somebody who is in a confessee’s managerial chain of command.”

I really do agree with that principle . . . it’s a tough one too because it makes it a bit more inconvenient [ie, more travel, etc.]  I go a step further and suspect that laypeople who start out as friends with particular clergy probably shouldn’t make those friends clergy confessors.  It seems like it’s a boundaries and roles thing, more than anything.  Of course, a confessor might become a friend—and that’s a different matter.  But generally speaking I’ve sought out confessors who are not primarily friends first and who are in different geographic regions.



By Jeremy Bonner on September 21, 2014 at 5:02 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

One other thought. Perhaps it should be made a rule that a confessor should not be somebody who is in a confessee’s managerial chain of command. Thus a bishop should never be a confessor for any clergy of that diocese and a parish priest should never be a confessor for any employee of their parish, even if they are also a member of that parish.



By Jeremy Bonner on September 21, 2014 at 4:45 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Where Confession is still practiced as a sacrament, it ought to be deserving of support from those who believe in the sacramental efficacy of Confession. More to the point, if the principle is conceded by the state church, then it will put increased pressure on Rome and the Orthodox to do the same and that should be of concern.



By Marie Blocher on September 21, 2014 at 2:52 am [comment link]
From the entry: ‘Joyful noise’ puts Columbia, South Carolina, pastor in jail for one day

It’s like those who buy near an airport and then complain about the noise of the planes. The new residents should have investigated the area before they bought instead of complaining about a preexisting situation.



By magnolia on September 21, 2014 at 1:02 am [comment link]
From the entry: (Chicago Tribune) Spokane bishop introduced as Chicago's next archbishop

i pray that he is not leading the church down the same dark path as TEC.



By Ad Orientem on September 20, 2014 at 7:47 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (NPR) Should The U.S. Pay Ransom For ISIS Hostages?

No.



By Ad Orientem on September 20, 2014 at 7:46 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Memo to self: Proofreading is my friend.



By Ad Orientem on September 20, 2014 at 7:45 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Indeed. Most Anglicans, excepting the High Church types, have never really signed onto confession sa a sacrament at all. In any event why bother with it? Holy Communion has already been reduced to something only a half step removed from an empty ceremony. And sin is concept that is clearly alien to the CofE.

File this under “big deal.”



By Archer_of_the_Forest on September 20, 2014 at 7:14 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Daily Mail) C of E may axe 400-year-old sacred law to let clergy report serious crimes

Confession is basically a dying sacrament in the Anglican church anyway, so what does it matter?



By Vatican Watcher on September 20, 2014 at 5:52 pm [comment link]
From the entry: Anglican Bishop Owen Nwokolo worries Nigeria cd break up if Boko Haram is left unchecked

An interesting ‘what if’ is how Nigeria would be doing today if the Republic of Biafra had been able to secure its independence.



By Ad Orientem on September 20, 2014 at 1:24 pm [comment link]
From the entry: (Chicago Tribune) Spokane bishop introduced as Chicago's next archbishop

When the left leaning press and media are calling your new bishop a “moderate” it’s a pretty good bet that you have a problem. This guy’s track record is disconcerting to say the least.



By tjmcmahon on September 20, 2014 at 9:05 am [comment link]
From the entry: The Presiding Bishop’s Sermon at TEC HOB Meeting this Week

#2- The problem is the lack of funds at 815.  As we have all noted over the last few years, starting about 2008, KJS staff started writing all her domestic sermons for her, so she would end up reading stuff that was overtly liberal, but had the occasional biblical reference or used some bit of traditional terminology.
But whenever she goes oversees, say Ecuador or Taiwan, they can’t afford to send the entourage of ghostwriters, so she jots down her own homilies on the back of an envelop, or whatever, and we get bits of fantasy fiction like this one, that come across like something out of a novel from the 70s, where the author takes a couple of druidic legends and adapts them so that instead of worshiping a huge oak tree in a grove, they worship the largest clump of sea kelp that washes up on the shore each year.
I think the mold is getting to me, too- I never used to write run on sentences like that.



By tjmcmahon on September 20, 2014 at 8:52 am [comment link]
From the entry: The Presiding Bishop’s Sermon at TEC HOB Meeting this Week

Those of us old enough to have spent any amount of time watching Sci-Fi movies from the 1950s have seen all this before.  The HoB has been taken over by Pod People from the planet Viridia (it would explain a lot).  Even the minds of the most moderate (let’s be real, there are no longer any conservative or traditionalist) bishop in TEC has been infected with mold.
The change in tactics (huge carbon dioxide expenditure in travel, plus the exhaust of gases in all these so-called sermons) is designed to cause the greenhouse effect so long anticipated, and leave an atmosphere in which the Pod People can thrive.



By Barbara Gauthier on September 20, 2014 at 7:24 am [comment link]
From the entry: The Presiding Bishop’s Sermon at TEC HOB Meeting this Week

From “Veritas” (Truth) to “viriditas” (green-ness).

That pretty well sums up the evolution of the Episcopal Church, which started with the principled legacy of Thomas Cranmer and has now ended up with the fecundity of Mother Earth as its guiding light.



By Katherine on September 19, 2014 at 8:54 pm [comment link]
From the entry: The Presiding Bishop’s Sermon at TEC HOB Meeting this Week

Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.  Seriously, did any of it mean anything?



By Nikolaus on September 19, 2014 at 7:43 pm [comment link]
From the entry: The Presiding Bishop’s Sermon at TEC HOB Meeting this Week

I found this monologue to be very unedifying.



By Cranmerian on September 19, 2014 at 6:58 pm [comment link]
From the entry: The Presiding Bishop’s Sermon at TEC HOB Meeting this Week

Does anyone else long for the simpler days of “pluriform truth” from Frank Griswold?  These sermons are getting more and more bizarre.  This is a truly lost woman, and needs our prayers.


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