Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Bishop Dobbs: U.S. State Department Denies Visa for Assyrian Christians facing Imminent Threats from ISIS

By Isaiah Narciso
May 20, 2015

The U.S. State Department may have sent a signal to an Anglican bishop in Iraq that despite persecution and harassment from the terror group known as ISIS, Christians in that country will not find any support from the United States government. According to Faith J.H. McDonnell of Philos Project, the Rt. Rev. Julian M. Dobbs, bishop of the Diocese of CANA East (Convocation of Anglicans in North America), revealed that part of U.S. foreign policy during an interaction with the State Department's Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM).

Dobbs made his case to the State Department on behalf of a group of Assyrian Christians who are desperate to leave northern Iraq. "There is no way that Christians will be supported because of their religious affiliation," the State Department said the rest
"Donors in the private sector have offered complete funding for the airfare and the resettlement in the United States of these Iraqi Christians that are sleeping in public buildings, on school floors, or worse," McDonnell wrote. "But the State Department - while admitting 4,425 Somalis to the United States in just the first six months of FY2015, and possibly even accepting members of ISIS through the Syrian and Iraqi refugee program, all paid for by tax dollars, told Dobbs that they 'would not support a special category to bring Assyrian Christians into the United States.'"

McDonnell contended that the United States government made it clear religious affiliation does not mean support for Christians in the region in the form of asylum.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The 11-year-old taking jazz world by storm


Apr 30, 2015

The 11-year-old taking jazz world by storm
An 11-year-old piano prodigy from Indonesia will appear at the prestigious Newport Jazz Festival after taking the American jazz scene by storm.

Joey Alexander, who releases his debut album My Favorite Things this week, has attracted high praise from trumpeter and director of Jazz at Lincoln Centre Wynton Marsalis, who has said: "There has never been anyone that you can think of who could play like that at his age. I loved everything about his playing – his rhythm, his confidence, his understanding of the music."

Marsalis said he found out about Bali-born Alexander after a friend suggested he watched a YouTube clip of the then 10-year-old performing tunes by John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk and Chick Corea...


Age 10

Monday, May 18, 2015

Homosexual Sexual Assault Epidemic Grows in U.S. Military; Giving passing grades to failing students...more

Homosexual Sexual Assault Epidemic Grows in U.S. Military  ...Well, it is now a few years later, and as we could expect with open homosexuality in the military, the number of sexual assaults has grown significantly. How bad is it? Defense Secretary Ash Carter, who inherited this mess after years of Mr. Obama’s social engineering, admitted in a recent speech that the Defense Department is trying to “lead boldly on sexual assault.” Despite hundreds of millions of dollars being spent on sexual assault prevention programs, including “May I Kiss You?” training, the number of sexual assaults continue to increase. (You can read more about “May I Kiss You?” training here) Last year, Mr. Carter said, thousands more men (10,400) were sexually assault than women (8,500). Although Mr. Carter said, “No man or woman who serves in the United States military should ever be sexually assaulted,” Mr. Obama’s homosexualist policies prove how utterly misguided efforts to promote open homosexuality in the military during a dangerous time are for morale and unit cohesion.

Further, it is not only dangerous for those serving in the armed forces. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, the liberal Democrat from New York, recently observed that the spouses of service members and civilian women who live or work near military facilities are also vulnerable to sexual assault by military personnel. However, Senator Gillibrand said that these victims “remain in the shadows” because neither military spouses nor civilian women are counted in sexual assault surveys conducted by the Defense Department. “I don’t think the military is being honest about the problem,” Senator Gillibrand said in an interview. The senator said that her analysis of 107 sexual assault cases found punishments that were too lenient, and that the word of the alleged assailant was more likely to be believed than the victim...

At the mercy of the climate jihadists
Most nations and states would be hard-pressed to surrender affordable housing and blue-collar employment for the privilege of being climate-policy warriors. And none has the concentration of industries – such as entertainment and software – that allow California’s leaders to think they can do away with carbon-based energy without negative effects.

But who cares about reality when you have idealism, the courage of conviction and little regard for the average citizen? So Jerry Brown will be feted at the upcoming Paris climate conference as a farsighted leader moving his state toward a better world. And, as long as the current property-value and tax-revenue bubbles continue, he can certainly persuade a gullible media that you can wage climate jihad without turning the entire economy into collateral damage. Californians struggling to find decent work, or an affordable house, those suffering the consequence of the state’s religious crusade, can only stand by as the governor and his friends gaze into the mirror with obvious collective delight.

Teacher assails practice of giving passing grades to failing students  Caleb Stewart Rossiter, a college professor and policy analyst, decided to try teaching math in the D.C. schools. He was given a pre-calculus class with 38 seniors at H.D. Woodson High School. When he discovered that half of them could not handle even second-grade problems, he sought out the teachers who had awarded the passing grades of D in Algebra II, a course that they needed to take his high-level class.

There are many bewildering stories like this in Rossiter’s new book, “Ain’t Nobody Be Learnin’ Nothin’: The Fraud and the Fix for High-Poverty Schools,” the best account of public education in the nation’s capital I have ever read. It will take me three columns to do justice to his revelations about what is being done to the District’s most distracted and least productive students...

Fear often turns into anger and hatred. There was plenty of that being stoked in the 1960s, but much more than racism caused white flight from Baltimore...

The Himalayas Dropped 3 Feet After the Nepal Earthquake
The earthquake in Nepal was so violent it moved mountains. Satellite imagery shows that the parts of the Himalayas sank three feet—and the area around it as much as five feet—as tectonic plates snapped under extreme pressure. But the mountains will regain their height, slowly but surely, thanks to the geologic forces at work. 
 
The European Space Agency’s Sentinel-1A radar satellite captured before and after images of the area hit by the earthquake. The image below show how the Eurasian plate bent, the land falling in some places (yellow) and rising in others (blue). The area of the Himalaya’s Langtang range sank by three feet. Everest, which was further away from the earthquake, sank about an inch...

Friday, May 15, 2015

Two back garden pictures-Spring 2015

Periwinkle
 
Fiddlehead in the fern patch
 
Pictures by Raymond Dague


Albert Mohler: Children of the Day

Thy beams did fall before
May 14, 2015

Excerpt:
The great dividing line in humanity is not merely between the children of light and the children of darkness, but between those destined for wrath and those destined for salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. Whoever believes in Christ will be saved, and this salvation is not our work, but the gift of God. The entire plan of salvation is the outworking of the eternal purposes of God, as Paul described in Romans 8:28-30: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.”

We are told in no uncertain terms that the only alternative to our destiny of salvation through Christ is to be destined for wrath. This should lead to the unceasing gratitude of the church throughout eternity, but it must also lead to the most eager preaching, teaching, and taking of the gospel to the nations and to all people everywhere.

Ministers of Christ’s church serve in the knowledge that we are serving those who are destined for salvation in Christ and that Christ’s church is not, thanks be to God, destined for wrath. We minister, knowing that our destiny, and the destiny of all those who are in Christ, is secured by God, and not by ourselves. Thus, nothing the world can do can thwart our ministry in an eternal perspective. The church is safe in the purposes of God, destined for salvation, and thus we preach. 
the rest image

A.S. Haley: The Episcopal Church: Undermining the USA from Within

May 14, 2015

In my previous post, I detailed the sordid story by which the Episcopal Church (USA) has gotten into the debt collection business. Refugees designated to migrate to the United States are advanced travel money by an arm of the U.S. State Department. They land here, and are placed in the hands of (among other agencies) Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM), which helps them relocate into specific communities, find jobs, and settle in. Then EMM sees that they repay their travel advances to the Government, and pockets one-quarter of its debt collection proceeds for its trouble.

It's a nifty racket, and ensures that annually over $300,000 comes into the Episcopal Church's coffers, to help with its bottom line.  Meanwhile, the U.S. Government reimburses EMM for all of its other refugee relocation expenses, to the tune of some $14 million annually.

Now thanks to our good friend and frequent commenter El Gringo Viejo, your Curmudgeon has been pointed to this illuminating video message, which tells "the rest of the story," so to speak. It turns out that a good portion of the refugees EMM is assisting are not just any refugees, but are Muslims from some of the countries to which America has sent troops, bombs or both: Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq and (soon) Syria. Listen to Ann Corcoran as she explains what she discovered: the rest



But... State Department Says No to Iraqi Christians

State Department Says No to Iraqi Christians; B.B. King dies at age 89...more

BB King, Defining Bluesman for Generations, Dies at 89
B. B. King, whose world-weary voice and wailing guitar lifted him from the cotton fields of Mississippi to a global stage and the apex of American blues, died Thursday in Las Vegas. He was 89...

State Department Says No to Iraqi Christians Writing in April in USA Today about the murder of 12 Christian migrants thrown into the sea by Muslims for praying to Jesus instead of Allah, columnist Kirsten Powers stated that President Barack Obama “just can’t seem to find any passion for the mass persecution of Middle Eastern Christians or the eradication of Christianity from its birthplace.”

The president’s response appears to be United States policy. Evidence suggests that within the administration not only is there no passion for persecuted Christians under threat of genocide from the Islamic State, there is no room for them, period. In fact, despite ISIS’ targeting of Iraqi Christians specifically because they are Christians, and, as such, stand in the way of a pure, Islamic Caliphate in the Middle East (and beyond), the U.S. State Department has made it clear that “there is no way that Christians will be supported because of their religious affiliation.”...

Irish archbishops back gay marriage
A war of letters has broken out between Church of Ireland clergy over the introduction of gay marriage in the Republic of Ireland.

On 22 May 2015 Ireland will go to the polls to vote on a constitutional amendment put forward by the Fine Gael-Labour government that would mandate the legal recognition of same-sex marriage. The Roman Catholic Bishops of Ireland have urged the defeat of the bill, but two former Archbishops of Dublin and two current Church of Ireland bishops have said they will vote “yes”.

The Most Rev. John Neill, the archbishop of Dublin from 2002 to 2011, told The Irish Times “we now recognise that there are many different types of unions and I don’t see why they cannot have the protection and status of marriage”. "The understanding of marriage in the church has evolved, putting partnership first before procreation”, in which context “there is less of a problem about same-sex marriage”. The Most Rev. Walton Empey, archbishop from 1996 to 2002 said "I certainly have no hesitation in calling for a Yes vote."...

American College of Physicians endorses gay ‘marriage,’ opposes reparative therapy  
The nation’s largest association for internal medicine doctors this week officially endorsed homosexual “marriage” and blamed marriage protection laws for damaging the physical and mental health of people who identify as LGBT.

The American College of Physicians (ACP) also officially opposed reparative therapy for individuals suffering from unwanted same-sex tendencies, and called for all-inclusive “transgender healthcare services” in its policy paper published May 12 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

"It’s based upon our longstanding policy in regard to eliminating healthcare disparities," said Dr. Wayne Riley, president of the ACP and a clinical professor of medicine at Nashville’s Vanderbilt University School of Medicine...

Pew: Evangelicals Stay Strong as Christianity Crumbles in America
The main methods for measuring American faith are flawed.

So thinks the Pew Research Center, which today released the second wave of a massive study designed to “fill the gap” left by the United States census (no questions on religion), the self-reporting of denominations (“widely differing criteria”), and smaller surveys (too few questions or people).
 
Scrutinizing the past seven years, Pew finds that, amid the rise of the “nones” and other popular talking points, the fate of evangelicals is proving much brighter than Christianity at large.
Here are highlights from the US Religious Landscape Study, conducted among more than 35,000 adults in English and Spanish...

Art Has Ceased to Be Beautiful or Interesting
...So what defines an artist today? The influential sociologist Howard Becker explained that artists are people who possess rare powers which they trade with the world in exchange for its tolerance of their quirky behaviour. He added: ‘Work and makers stand in reciprocal relation to one another. If you do it, you must be an artist, so what you do must be art.’ So that’s self-fulfilling and not susceptible to any testing. Additionally, on the evidence offered here, artists are characterised by self-absorption, vanity and a casual, but colossal, disregard for the public. Mental health specialists know this as narcissistic personality disorder...


The Real O'Neals (ABC) Official Trailer [HD]
Be prepared-this is disgusting-courtesy of Dan Savage, so what else would you expect.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Holiness...

Fiery sunset 2
No amount of money, genius, or culture can move things for God. Holiness energizing the soul, the whole man aflame with love, with desire for more faith, more prayer, more zeal, more consecration-this is the secret of power. These we need and must have, and men must be the incarnation of this God-inflamed devotedness. God's advance has been stayed, his cause crippled: his name dishonored for their lack. Genius (though the loftiest and most gifted), education (though the most learned and refined), position, dignity, place, honored names, high ecclesiastics cannot move this chariot of our God. It is a fiery one, and fiery forces only can move it. The genius of a Milton fails. The imperial strength of a Leo fails. Brainerd's spirit can move it. Brainerd's spirit was on fire for God, on fire for souls. Nothing earthly, worldly, selfish came in to abate in the least the intensity of this all-impelling and all-consuming force and flame." ...EM Bounds image

Canada: Same-Sex Marriage Erodes Fundamental Rights; Pregnant Satanist Sues Over Abortion Restrictions...more

In Chilling Lawsuit, Pregnant Satanist Sues Over Abortion Restrictions A 22 year old pregnant Satanist going by the name "Mary" is claiming in a new lawsuit that the state’s waiting period for abortion stands against her religion.

She's appealing to the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act as the legal means to procure an abortion quickly. The Satanic temple to which she belongs is doing its best to raise funds for the legal battle.

The lawsuit itself is chilling as it states that "For purposes of this petition, an ”unborn child” that is not ”viable” is referred to as “Tissue.” It states that her "deeply held religious beliefs" should pertain to the inviolability of her body...

A Warning from Canada: Same-Sex Marriage Erodes Fundamental Rights ...In Canada, freedoms of speech, press, religion, and association have suffered greatly due to government pressure. The debate over same-sex marriage that is taking place in the United States could not legally exist in Canada today. Because of legal restrictions on speech, if you say or write anything considered “homophobic” (including, by definition, anything questioning same-sex marriage), you could face discipline, termination of employment, or prosecution by the government.

Why do police prosecute speech under the guise of eliminating “hate speech” when there are existing legal remedies and criminal protections against slander, defamation, threats, and assault that equally apply to all Americans? Hate-crime-like policies using the terms “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” create unequal protections in law, whereby protected groups receive more legal protection than other groups.

Having witnessed how mob hysteria in Indiana caused the legislature to back-track on a Religious Freedom Restoration Act, many Americans are beginning to understand that some activists on the Left want to usher in state control over every institution and freedom. In this scheme, personal autonomy and freedom of expression become nothing more than pipe dreams, and children become commodified...

Losing faith in America: Study shows decline in religion, rise in atheism  Christianity in America is declining and the country is becoming more secular, according to a new report from the respected Pew Research Center.

While seven out of 10 Americans still identify with a religion, the number professing 'no religion' has grown to 56 million, making the 'nones' group the second largest behind evangelicals. Protestant Christians now comprise only 46.5 per cent of what was once a predominantly Protestant country...

AU Anglican church angry over Department of Education banning of “one-partner” material
Anglican church leaders have slammed an “unprecedented” interference by the Department of Education after it banned three books used by the church’s scripture teachers on the basis they promoted only monogamous heterosexual relationships. 

Scripture teachers were told this week they were not allowed to use books called Teen Sex By The Book by Patricia Weerakoon, You: An Introduction by Michael Jensen, and A Sneaking Suspicion by John Dickson because the texts violated departmental policy.

The texts were used in Special Religious Education (SRE) classes at state schools — classes parents choose to send their children to...

Methodist Lobby: Divest from Israel, Invest in North Korea, Legalize Prostitution  The world’s lone Jewish state must be singled out for punitive divestment campaigns, while we should at the same time promote economic investment in North Korea, whose government has done absolutely nothing in the area of human rights worthy of specific criticism. And we should take our broad support for sex outside of marriage one step further by advocating to legalize prostitution.

This was the moral vision offered by our United Methodist Church’s apportionment-funded D.C.
lobby office, the General Board of Church and Society (GBCS) at its Spring 2015 board of directors meeting.

The main business of this semi-annual meeting was adopting, rather hastily, dozens of petitions and resolutions that will be submitted for consideration at our denomination’s 2016 General Conference. The GBCS’s head staffer, since early 2014, is the Rev. Susan Henry-Crowe, while its board president is Bishop Robert Hoshibata of the Desert-Southwest Conference...

What’s the Point of a Professor?   ...When college is more about career than ideas, when paycheck matters more than wisdom, the role of professors changes. We may be 50-year-olds at the front of the room with decades of reading, writing, travel, archives or labs under our belts, with 80 courses taught, but students don’t lie in bed mulling over what we said. They have no urge to become disciples.

Sadly, professors pressed for research time don’t want them, either. As a result, most undergraduates never know that stage of development when a learned mind enthralled them and they progressed toward a fuller identity through admiration of and struggle with a role model...

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Do Mothers Matter?

Baby Love
It may sound crazy, but explaining why mothers matter is apparently necessary.
By Rachel Lu
May 8, 2015

Excerpt:
It’s hard sometimes to celebrate the wonderfully ordinary. In childhood, I remember my mother getting irritated each year by the local paper’s coverage of Mother’s Day. They always felt a need to find a “non-traditional” maternal figure to celebrate. Each May we got bright, happy features on unwed Murphy-Brown-type professionals who were doing it on their own, or on the heroic, childless woman who had volunteered hundreds of hours to the Girl Scouts, the “daughters she never had.” We apparently weren’t permitted to celebrate women who just got married, conceived and bore tiny new humans, and then raised them to adulthood. How boring and plebeian was that?

I fully understood my mom’s irritation. But I also sympathized with the local features editor. How many stories can you run on lullabies and apple pie? Motherhood is a minefield of clichés precisely because its importance is simply too obvious. For most of us, the goodness of mom is one of the first truths we ever grasp. We take our mothers for granted, just like sunshine and smiles and warm, cozy beds. As with those things, it’s hard to articulate their importance without sounding like a grinning, sentimental idiot.

Funny thing, though. In today’s world, it’s becoming audacious (even offensive!) to suggest that a child should have a mother. Another Mother’s Day is upon us, and the brunches will go on as usual, but a glance through your news feed will tell a different story: motherhood is besieged on a broader cultural level.
 
Consider, for example, this recent piece by Joy Pullmann on “full-service schools,” a fresh, new growing-up alternative to families. “Marriage equality” is poised to steamroll its way into every corner of the nation, carrying with it the new orthodoxy that kids don’t really need their natural parents. Meanwhile, surrogacy (fueled to a great extent by the desire of gay couples to procure children to raise) continues its advance into the Western world. the rest image

Friday, May 08, 2015

Anglican Unscripted Episode 178


May 8, 2015

Anglican Unscripted is the only video newscast in the Anglican Church. Each Episode Kevin, George, Allan and Peter bring you news and prospective from around the globe. Please Donate - http://anglican.tv/donate