Saturday, June 23, 2007

Gratitude as a discipline involves a conscious choice. I can choose to be grateful even when my emotions and feelings are still steeped in hurt and resentment. It is amazing how many occasions present themselves in which I can choose gratitude instead of a complaint. I can choose to grateful when I am criticized, even when my heart still responds in bitterness. I can choose to speak about goodness and beauty, even when my inner eye still looks for someone to accuse or something to call ugly.
...Henri J. M. Nouwen photo

Who Am I by Casting Crowns music video

Anglicans face same sex debate
Richard Foot, CanWest News Service
Saturday, June 23, 2007

WINNIPEG — An emotional debate opened here Saturday as delegates to the Anglican Church of Canada’s national meeting try to decide whether to approve the blessing of same sex partnerships.

About 300 Anglican bishops, priests and laity will vote this weekend on a matter that has deeply divided the church at home and also in the global Anglican Communion.

Feelings are raw on both sides of the issue, which may be decided either Saturday night or on Sunday.

“We see our church as being so open, so welcoming,” said one priest from Quebec, speaking to fellow delegates inside a Winnipeg conference hall. “We must open the door and we must allow our brothers and sisters who are gay and lesbian to be with us and share with us in this church.”

A delegate from the Anglican Diocese of the Arctic, who is opposed to the blessing of same-sex unions, said: “I am one of the biggest sinners I know. (But) to bless sin would be a disaster to our church.”
the rest

N.J. Dog Crowned World's Ugliest
Jun 23

PETALUMA, Calif. (AP) -
Elwood, a 2-year-old Chinese Crested and Chihuahua mix, was crowned the world's ugliest dog Friday, a distinction that delighted the New Jersey mutt's owners.

Elwood, dark colored and hairless—save for a mohawk-like puff of white fur on his head—is often referred to as "Yoda," or "ET," for his resemblance to those famous science fiction characters.

"I think he's the cutest thing that ever lived," said Elwood's owner, Karen
Quigley, a resident of Sewell, New Jersey. the rest

Breakaway Colorado Parish Makes Plea to Preserve Church Property
Lillian Kwon
Christian Post Reporter
Fri, Jun. 22 2007

Breakaway members of an Episcopal congregation in Colorado have made pleas to their congregation to help establish a new legal precedent in a court battle over church property.

Congregants of Grace Church and St. Stephen's Episcopal Church who voted to split from The Episcopal Church last month continue to worship at the multi-million dollar church property while those that voted against the withdrawal claim the property rightfully belongs to The Episcopal Church.

Grace and St. Stephen’s revealed in a news release Wednesday a plea made by the breakaway group on their website to "please make a donation to help us establish a new legal precedent and overturn the Colorado Mote decision that is used as the basis for differing to hierarchal structures," according to the Episcopal News Service.
the rest

Pastor: Black churches must aid family values
Baptist leader challenges other congregations to set ambitious goals

Associated Press

June 23, 2007

ST. LOUIS — A black Baptist leader is urging black churches to set goals for reducing by 25 percent the rate of black divorce, teen pregnancy, illiteracy, murder and HIV infection by 2012, and increasing the adoption of black foster children.

The goals are part of the ambitious Save the Family Now initiative that the Rev. R.B. Holmes Jr. rolled out this week as more than 45,000 delegates of the National Baptist Convention USA attended the group's annual Congress of Christian Education in St. Louis.

Holmes said it was time for black clergy to lead a movement, not unlike the fight for civil rights 40 years ago. Ministers must challenge the culture and forces that have hurt the black family and community, including those who "demean, degrade and belittle our mothers and daughters," he said.
the rest

NYT: A Liberal Explains His Rejection of Same-Sex Marriage
Published: June 23, 2007

Could legalizing same-sex marriage actually strengthen marriage as a social institution? “If I could believe this,” writes David Blankenhorn, “I would support gay marriage without reservation.”

Mr. Blankenhorn is a self-described liberal Democrat and “marriage nut,” a veteran leader in the movement to strengthen marriage, and especially fatherhood, in the United States.

His book, “The Future of Marriage,” published last month by Encounter Books, explains why he doesn’t believe same-sex marriage will serve that cause. But given the charged nature of the subject, his book may also set a record for optimism about the human capacity for rational discussion.

Mr. Blankenhorn, who opposes same-sex marriage, believes that the national debate about the issue can be rescued from the polarized clash of gut reactions, religious injunctions, emotional appeals and accusations of bigotry. He even believes the debate could provide “an invaluable opportunity for Americans to have a serious national discussion about marriage’s meaning and future.”
the rest

Here: General Synod 2007 live coverage

Updates at TitusOneNine (don't forget to refresh from time to time)

British PM Blair Meets With Pope
The Associated Press
June 23, 2007

British Prime Minister Tony Blair held long talks with Pope Benedict XVI in a Vatican meeting Saturday, a stop on his farewell tour that has fueled rumors he plans to become a Roman Catholic.

The two men met privately for 25 minutes and then were joined for further talks by English Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor.

No immediate details of the talks were given.

Greeted by Benedict, Blair explained that he had just arrived from an EU summit in Brussels.

'I heard it was very successful,' Benedict said.

'Yes, we had a very long night. We finished up at 5:30 in the morning,' Blair replied.

The Guardian newspaper in Britain, citing unidentified sources, reported Friday that an invitation for Blair and his wife to join the Archbishop of Westminster, Murphy-O'Connor, for lunch at the Venerable English College in Rome was a signal the Catholic church would take Blair into its fold.
the rest

APA Appoints Gay Activists to Monitor Homosexual Reorientation Therapy
By Elizabeth O'Brien
June 22, 2007

( - The recently created "Task Force on Appropriate Therapeutic Responses to Sexual Orientation", which is part of the American Psychological Association (APA), has appointed five openly gay activists to monitor clients who want to overcome their homosexual tendencies.

The APA's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Concerns Office requested that the task force be created, asking clinicians to submit qualified names for job positions. In response, the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) compiled a list of doctors and professors for the new committee. Despite the high qualifications of these professionals, a recent NARTH press release stated that all of them were rejected by APA president Dr. Sharon Stephens Brehm.

Instead, five out of the six people chosen this May for the task force, reports NARTH, are "committed gay-affirmative activists who are openly hostile to the reality that individuals with unwanted same-sex attraction can be helped."
the rest

Fourth African Archbishop Taking U.S. Churches Under His Wing
Lillian Kwon
Christian Post Reporter
Sat, Jun. 23 2007

A fourth Anglican archbishop from Africa has announced plans to appoint an American bishop to take conservative U.S. churches under its wing.

The archbishop of Uganda, the Most Rev. Henry Luke Orombi, reaffirmed on Thursday that he will consecrate the Rev. John A.M. Guernsey, rector of All Saints Church in Dale City, Va., as a bishop in the Church of Uganda. Guernsey will provide local oversight to the 26 congregations in the United States that are already part of the Church of Uganda.

Orombi's announcement comes a week after Kenya's Anglican archbishop, Benjamin Nzimbi, said he will install Canon Bill Atwood as suffragan bishop of All Saints' Cathedral Diocese, Nairobi, to provide a "safe haven" for Anglicans seeking to remain faithful to historic Anglican faith.
the rest

'Evan Almighty' Hits Theaters Nationwide to Mixed Reviews
Kevin Jackson
Christian Post Reporter
Sat, Jun. 23 2007

The story is a modern retelling of the biblical tale of Noah, in which God has His faithful servant build an ark to escape a flood that would eliminate all of humanity.

For this revamped version, critics, both Christian and secular, are giving mixed film reviews. Most faith-based organizations, however, are giving the thumbs up to go see it based on its clean content.

“Where Bruce Almighty was a PG-13 adult comedy with an occasionally dark or vulgar edge, Evan Almighty is an unabashedly wholesome family movie,” wrote Carolyn Arends in a review on Christianity Today. “Thematically, the film is a bulls-eye for family viewing, and I am quite certain my kids, ages 8 and 5, are going to love it.”
the rest photo

Bishops Weigh Political Involvement
Catholic Bishops Weigh Political Involvement After Communion Stir in 2004

The Associated Press
By ERIC GORSKI AP Religion Writer
Jun 21, 2007 (AP)

Three years after a few outspoken U.S. Roman Catholic bishops tied together presidential politics, abortion and the Communion rail, leaders of the nation's largest denomination are starting to speak out again.

Only this time, the political climate is much different.

The Catholic presidential hopeful under criticism for championing abortion rights is a Republican instead of a Democrat, the general election might pit two candidates who believe abortion should remain legal, Democrats control both chambers of Congress and immigration reform has surfaced as a major issue.

As most of the nation's 268 active Catholic bishops met for a private retreat this week in New Mexico, questions were building about how prominent their voices will be in the 2008 race.
the rest

Bay IVF Experts Witness Rise in Single-by-Choice Moms
More women using in vitro fertilization for solo parenting, reflecting latest CDC report of record levels of American babies born to single mothers.

SAN RAMON, Calif., June 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The latest report of a
national boom in single motherhood is being felt in Northern California, where fertility physicians are noting sharp growth in the number of women patients using assisted reproductive technology to pursue parenting without partners.

"One in 10 of my patients is now a single woman," said Susan P. Willman, M.D. reproductive endocrinologist at the Reproductive Science Center of the San Francisco Bay Area. "While fertility centers traditionally have treated couples, we are seeing a larger percent of women who would feel they have to make a choice of parenting alone or perhaps not at all."

According to a November 2006 report from the Centers for Disease Control, nearly four in 10 babies were born in the United States in 2005 to single mothers, up from 35 percent of births in 2003.
the rest

Pagans to Rally for Religious Rights in Front of the White House on July 4th
Rev. Barry Lynn of Americans United to Speak

WASHINGTON, June 21 /PRNewswire/ -- A group of Pagan religious leaders from diverse denominations will gather in Lafayette Square Park on the Fourth of July to advocate for a Pagan military chaplain, request more approved Pagan religious symbols from the Department of Veterans Affairs and call for universal freedom of religious expression.

Rev. Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State will also address the crowd. "Until Pagans have the same rights as Presbyterians and Pentecostals, religious liberty is not safe in America. The Framers of our Constitution mandated no preference for any one religion
over another or for all religion over secularist beliefs."
the rest

US House approves foreign aid; ignites abortion fight
Fri Jun 22, 2007
By Richard Cowan

(Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives ignored a White House veto threat and passed on Friday a foreign aid bill that would allow government donations of contraceptives to family planning groups outside the United States even though they engage in abortion activities.

By a vote of 223-201, the House voted to lift the prohibition in place since 2001. The move angered anti-abortion lawmakers who see it as a step toward loosening strict controls against using U.S. funds for abortions abroad.

The measure was attached to a $34.2 billion foreign aid bill for the fiscal year beginning on Oct. 1 that the House passed by a vote of 241-178. House Republicans say they have enough votes to uphold a possible veto by President George W. Bush.

The Senate has not yet debated the bill.
the rest

Diocese of Quincy gears up for fight with TEC
Michael Miller
Saturday, June 23, 2007

The Episcopal Church has a question for the west-central Illinois Diocese of Quincy:
Are you ready to rummmmmbbbbblllllllllle?

The denomination's executive council declared last week that certain parts of the constitutions of four dioceses, including Quincy, are "null and void," particularly sections which TEC power-structure higher-ups feel might be used to leave the church.

The dioceses are on the record with others as wanting oversight from a province other than The Episcopal Church, which may find itself booted from the worldwide Anglican Communion by the end of the year due to the American church's open acceptance of homosexuality. Leaders in several individual churches and dioceses, including Quincy and Springfield, object to TEC's current direction, saying it's unbiblical.

the rest TitusOneNine

Friday, June 22, 2007

Have you noticed this? Whatever need or trouble you are in, there is always something to help you in your Bible, if only you go on reading till you come to the word God specially has for you. I have noticed this often. Sometimes the special word is in the portion you would naturally read, or in the Psalm for the day, ... but you must go on till you find it, for it is always somewhere. You will know it the moment you come to it, for it will rest your heart. ... Amy Carmichael photo

CANA Supports New Pastoral Initiative by Uganda

CANA’s Missionary Bishop Martyn Minns said on June 22, “I have just read of the proposed consecration of the Rev’d John Guernsey as a bishop in the Church of Uganda (Anglican Communion) to serve Uganda-related priests and churches in North America. This follows a similar action by the Anglican Church of Kenya in its proposed consecration of Canon Bill Atwood. Both these announcements are welcome news. They demonstrate the willingness of various provinces in the Anglican Communion to support the mission and ministry of Anglicans in North America who can no longer be part of The Episcopal Church.”

Bishop-elect Guernsey, rector of All Saints Church (Dale City, Virginia) and dean for Anglican Communion Network-member congregations in the mid-Atlantic region, is a long-time friend and ministry colleague of Bishop Minns. Bishop Minns also said, “I look forward to continuing to work with John in his new role. We have worked together on numerous projects and enjoy a personal relationship of more than 20 years. We are already working closely together in the Anglican District of Virginia and I anticipate that this development will result in more new creative initiatives with CANA and the wider Common Cause partnership.” Common Cause is a cooperative fellowship of Anglican groups in North America. “As others have noted, there are now more than 250 congregations in North America related to the Global South in the Anglican Communion, and this number continues to grow,” Bishop Minns added. the rest

Ukraine's Influential Church Leader Shifting the Way Americans Think Church
Lillian Kwon
Christian Post Reporter
Fri, Jun. 22 2007

Hailing from Nigeria, Pastor Sunday Adelaja is considered one of the greatest church leaders in the modern era. He claims to run the largest evangelical congregation in Europe with 25,000 members in Kiev, Ukraine, alone. And now, he has taken it upon himself to impact the way America's churches operate.

Adelaja, who leads Embassy of God, visited with nearly 100 church pastors in the United States this week. He was in Dallas on Tuesday to launch a new U.S. ministry called ChurchShift.

"He believes the church [in America] needs to shift its thinking and the way the churches operate in society," explained James O. Davis, president of ChurchShift. "A shift from just being a place where believers come to worship in the weekend to [one where] believers are empowered in every sphere of society to be salt and light."

When Adelaja heard God's calling 13 years ago to start a church in a society that was predominantly white and filled with communism, he said God told him, "I want you to raise up a country of strong men and women to reach other countries, especially where the Soviet Union has been known to send death, destruction, and tears. Instead, I want to use the Soviet people to bring healing, health, and the Good News," according to Christianity Today.
the rest photo

Albert Mohler: The Church, the Bible, and the Body of Christ
Friday, June 22, 2007

Dr. Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, faces an incredible challenge as he attempts to hold the worldwide Anglican Communion together. The communion is torn apart by debates over sexuality, biblical authority, and a range of related issues. Nevertheless, homosexuality stands as the most divisive issue of contention.

In the current issue of
The Christian Century, the Archbishop raises some basic issues about the church. Though he offers no developed ecclesiology, his thinking does point to at least two reasons why his communion is having such difficulty holding together -- a wrong understanding of diversity and a weak affirmation of Scripture.

Williams refers to the church as "a community we can trust." As he explains, "Just as we can trust God because God has no agenda that is not for our good, so we can trust the church because it is the sort of community it is, a community of active peacemaking and peacekeeping in which no one exists in isolation or grows up in isolation or suffers in isolation." So good, so far, but surely there must be more than this?
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Bishop Fred Hiltz elected Anglican Primate
June 22, 2007

The Anglican Church of Canada has chosen Bishop Fred Hiltz of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island as its 13th Primate or national leader.

Bishop Hiltz was elected by the church's General Synod, meeting in Winnipeg, on the 5th ballot, from among four bishops nominated last April by a gathering of all Canadian bishops.

Bishop Hiltz, 53, will succeed Archbishop Andrew Hutchison, elected three years ago, who announced earlier that he would retire at the end of the General Synod gathering now underway. the rest photo

Lots of General Synod News: Here-CaNN

Happy Talk
By Neal O. Michell

“That’s one of the great joys I’ve had in my first six months, getting to travel and see the health and vitality that exists in this church,’’ she told a crowd of about 300 at Christ Episcopal Church. “I know it’s not always what you read in the newspaper or hear on the news, but it’s true.’’

—The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori

Thus our Presiding Bishop seeks to assure the people in the pews of The Episcopal Church that all is well. Isn’t that what a leader is supposed to do within an organization during a time of difficulty? Be a non-anxious presence?

After all, there is much good ministry and mission going on in Episcopal churches day in and day out. If we could just get the word out about all the good ministry that is going on in The Episcopal Church, people would realize that we really are doing quite well.

What’s wrong with this picture? What is wrong with this picture is that it is not the complete picture.
the rest

Part-time pastors increasingly juggle jobs, ministry to fill churches' needs
The Associated Press
June 22, 2007

SALEM, West Virginia: For many of the millions of Americans who depend on their pastors, ministers and spiritual leaders, a full-time minister is becoming an out-of-reach luxury. To keep small churches open — and to provide individual care at big churches — religious groups are increasingly relying on part-time, or bivocational pastors.

Worship is just one of the many expectations being placed on these part-timers. There are church council meetings, Bible studies, suppers and other gatherings, and — most important — being there for believers.

"A bivocational minister can be a lot of things, but he can't be lazy," says Ray Gilder, national coordinator of the Southern Baptist Bivocational Ministers Association.
the rest

Leading Episcopalian defends Church
Friday, 22nd June 2007
By: Nick Mackenzie.

A LEADING Episcopalian has denied that the American Church is “falling apart”.

Addressing a large-group conversation at the Canadian Church’s General Synod, Bonnie Anderson, president of The Episcopal Church’s House of Deputies, acknowledged that a “small number” of dioceses had members who were upset with the Church’s decisions, but added that each contained "faithful Episcopalians" and "we're making every effort to attend to their pastoral needs," she said.

Ms Anderson added that the “vast majority” of her Church’s members "are moving forward in mission with great enthusiasm" and Episcopalians at all levels of the Church are engaged in mission with Anglican Communion partners.

Although she was responding to questions about The Episcopal Church’s response to the Windsor Report, it is a subject high on the agenda at the Synod meeting in Winnipeg. That report was published after the last meeting of General Synod, so the 295 delegates are currently debating their proposed response.
the rest

NYT Op-Ed: Why Pro-Choice Is a Bad Choice for Democrats
June 22, 2007

I KEEP reading about a universe in which social conservatives are warming to Rudy Giuliani. But this would have to be a place where his estranged children and three wives and multiple appearances in fishnets were irrelevant to the Republican base. Where the nice gay couple he moved in with between marriages would be asked to appear in the film montage at the nominating convention in St. Paul.

Even in the real world, a pro-choice Republican nominee would be a gift to the Democrats, because the Republican Party wins over so many swing voters on abortion alone. Which is why Fred Thompson, who is against abortion rights, is getting so much grateful attention from his party now. And why, despite wide opposition to the war in Iraq, Democrats must still win back such voters to take the White House next year.

Over 18 months, I traveled to 20 states listening to women of all ages, races, tax brackets and points of view speak at length on the issues they care about heading into ’08. They convinced me that the conventional wisdom was wrong about the last presidential contest, that Democrats did not lose support among women because “security moms” saw President Bush as the better protector against terrorism. What first-time defectors mentioned most often was abortion.
the rest

Canadian Anglicans vote Saturday on same-sex blessings
Douglas Todd, CanWest News Service
June 22, 2007

WINNIPEG -- Even if the Anglican Church of Canada votes on Saturday to approve same-sex blessings, the spokesman for the world's top Anglican says the Canadian denomination will not be kicked out of the global Anglican communion.

"No scenario could emerge" from this week's Anglican general synod that would lead to the Archbishop of Canterbury expelling the Canadian church from the 76-million-member global Anglican denomination, says Kenneth Kearon, secretary general of the Anglican Communion.

The right-hand man to Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, told CanWest News Service Thursday: "There's no question the Anglican Church of Canada is a valued member of the Anglican Communion. There's never been a scenario considered that would lead to the exclusion of the Anglican Church of Canada."
the rest

St. Andrew's Vestal: Vestal church to sever ties to Episcopal organization
William Moyer
Press & Sun-Bulletin
Friday June 22, 2007

VESTAL -- After months of discussion, a Vestal church vestry voted this week to withdraw from the Episcopal Church and join an orthodox province that believes homosexuality is incompatible with biblical teaching.

"We're doing what we believe," said the Rev. Anthony Seel, pastor of what is now St. Andrew Anglican Church. "We're not in the same place as the Episcopal Church."

Seel said the vestry's 8-0 decision Monday came after years of discussions and a recently completed congregational survey that showed 88 percent of St. Andrew's adherents -- between 250 and 275 members -- favored leaving the Central New York Diocese and the Episcopal denomination.

Central New York's bishop expressed regret Thursday at the local church's decision.

"It's very sad to me that we've come to this day," said Bishop Gladstone "Skip" Adams from diocesan headquarters in Syracuse. "Let's stay at the table (and talk). Separation is not necessary. It's possible to disagree. "
the rest

Stand Firm: The Rev. John Guernsey Elected Bishop in Uganda
June 22, 2007

Dear Rectors, Clergy, and Lay Leaders of Ugandan Churches in America,

Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, our Good Shepherd!

I am writing to share with you a significant decision I and the House of Bishops have made today that I hope will be an encouragement to you. And, I want you, if possible, to hear it first from me.

The Church of Uganda is now providing ecclesiastical oversight to twenty-six congregations in America, and we continue to receive appeals from other congregations. Yet, when we first started responding to such appeals in 2004, I don't think any of us imagined at the time that the American church would be in the state that it is in today, and that the tear in the Anglican Communion would or could become deeper. We always envisioned the episcopal care and oversight we were providing you and other churches as being a temporary measure. Hence, we sometimes referred to this as our "ecclesiastical refugee ministry."
the rest

Added: The Living Church: Uganda to Consecrate Virginia Priest as Missionary Bishop to the U.S.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Believer! study the humility of Jesus.
This is the secret, the hidden root of thy redemption. Sink down into it deeper day by day. Believe with thy whole heart that this Christ, whom God has given thee, even as His divine humility wrought the work for thee, will enter in to dwell and work within thee too, and make thee what the Father would have thee be.
...Andrew Murray image

Seven Former Episcopal Churches in California Sued

Seven Southern California congregations previously affiliated with The Episcopal Church were sued on multiple counts in civil court recently. For at least one it will be the third time it will face an ownership challenge over title to the church property.

The Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of the Protestant Episcopal Church USA, the corporate arm of The Episcopal Church, is a plaintiff against all seven, four of which were formerly part of the Diocese of Los Angeles. The other three were previously affiliated with the Diocese of San Diego. The seven continue to worship at the same locations they used when they were part of The Episcopal Church.

Lawyers representing the Diocese of Los Angeles, The Episcopal Church and St. James’ Anglican Church in Newport Beach presented oral arguments in the California Court of Appeal 2nd District June 18. In 2005, a lower court ruled in favor of the parish and ordered the diocese to pay the attorney and court fees for the defendant. The Presbyterian Church, U.S.A., has also notified the court that it may be affected by the decision. The diocese and national church are appealing the verdict as well as the decision to award attorney and court fees. The suit also names the church leadership as individuals. Appeals against St. David’s, North Hollywood, All Saints, Long Beach and St. Luke’s, La Crescenta are pending.
the rest

Abortion procedure caused death, lawsuit alleges
By Jonathan Abrams,
Times Staff Writer
June 21, 2007

The mother of a Riverside woman who died of toxic shock syndrome after allegedly undergoing an abortion procedure at Planned Parenthood filed a malpractice suit against the organization and a Riverside County hospital this week.

The lawsuit alleges that Edrica Goode, 21, went to a Planned Parenthood clinic in Riverside for an abortion Jan. 31 and that a nurse inserted cervical dilators, used to gradually expand the cervix in preparation for second-trimester abortions, despite the fact that Goode had a vaginal infection.

The dilators, which are shaped like small sticks and consist primarily of seaweed, became a conduit that spread the infection to the rest of her body, the lawsuit alleges.
the rest

International observers urge Canadians to consider value of Anglican Communion
Marites N. Sison staff writer
Jun 21, 2007

Two international church leaders yesterday urged delegates of General Synod to adopt a positive approach to human sexuality, a contentious issue that will be dealt with during the ongoing meeting of the Anglican Church of Canada’s highest governing body here at the Marlborough Hotel.

In his remarks, John Sentamu, Archbishop of York and primate of England, urged delegates to exercise “gracious magnanimity” when dealing with the divisive issue of whether the church should bless homosexual unions.

For his part, Canon Kenneth Kearon, secretary general of the Anglican Communion urged Canadian Anglicans to “take time to stand back from the Anglican Communion,” where the focus has been on schism over the issue of human sexuality, and look instead at its value.
the rest

Attendance declines with 'liberal' attitudes
June 21, 2007

There are two main characteristics about formal organized religion in Canada. First, the vast majority of Canadians believe in God (and in percentage terms, most espouse the traditional Christian God). Second, the vast majority of Canadians rarely attend Church.

Why? What's the disconnect between faith and church attendance?

Part of the answer can be seen in this week's historic General Synod in Winnipeg where more than 400 bishops, clergy and ordinary members of the Anglican Church of Canada, this country's oldest Protestant Church, are holding their first such meeting in three years.

There are two main issues: electing a new Canadian leader; and voting on whether or not to let Anglican priests bless same-sex partnerships. And there, dear hearts, is the rub.

The fact is, the more "liberal" a Church becomes, the more Church attendance declines. And in Canada, as elsewhere, Churches have been taken over by the liberals and - with the exception of the Roman Catholics and evangelical churches, which continue to espouse more conservative theologies (and enjoy attendance growth) - attendance has plummeted.
the rest

Canadian Anglicans' vote could split communion
Stephen Bates in Winnipeg
Thursday June 21, 2007
Guardian Unlimited

Canadian Anglicans - not usually the most demonstrative or cantankerous of folk - are preparing to take decisions this weekend which could see both the election of the world's first female archbishop and, if they then also endorse official blessings for gay couples, the end of the worldwide Anglican communion.

The Canadian church's three-yearly general synod in Winnipeg has to elect a new primate and the favourite is the female bishop of Edmonton, the Right Reverend Victoria Matthews.
the rest

CHINA: Will fashion for Confucius retard religious freedom?
By Magda Hornemann
Forum 18 News Service
21 June 2007

After trying for decades to destroy Confucianism, the Communist party-state has now "endorsed" Confucian ideas and drawn on them in political slogans, Forum 18 News Service notes. It is also trying to promote a positive image of China through Confucius Institutes in foreign universities. But the selective adoption of Confucian ideas – for example to bolster nationalism - may delay genuine religious freedom for all. This use of Confucianism as a political instrument will have negative effects on the freedom of followers of "new" religions, like Christianity, and of religions identified with political separatism, such as Uighur Islam and Tibetan Buddhism. Chinese state endorsement and control has already produced a distortion of some religious communities' core beliefs and followers of Confucianism face the same threat. The state's priorities remain upholding its political position and ensuring societal quiescence, so it is wise to be cautious in evaluating Confucianism's apparent comeback.

the rest

Australian Censureship
Cardinal Pell to be interrogated by parliamentary committee

Sydney, Jun 20, 2007

CNA).- Australia’s Council of Civil Liberties has slammed the idea of having Cardinal George Pell interrogated by a parliamentary committee over his comments on therapeutic cloning and stem-cell research, calling it absurd.

"George Pell is entitled to freedom of speech and to engage in political discourse,'' council president Cameron Murphy said.

"From time to time you get all sorts of religious leaders who make comments that are out of step with the community, whether it's George Pell or Sheik Hilaly, and I think in a democratic society you have to have a degree of tolerance.”

The Greens Party yesterday won approval to have the cardinal interrogated by the parliamentary committee for contempt, reported The Telegraph.

Under the Crimes Act, contempt of Parliament is a highly serious offence punishable by up to 25 years in jail. The move, unheard of in recent history, was swiftly condemned as an absurd attack on free speech.

Cardinal Pell warned Catholic lawmakers last week that they would face religious consequences if they supported a bill allowing therapeutic cloning. The vast majority of MPs ignored the cardinal's warning and supported the bill, but numbers are expected to be closer when it goes to the Upper House later this month.
the rest

Episcopal Head Urges Church to Enter 'Real' Conversation
Lillian Kwon
Christian Post Reporter
Thu, Jun. 21 2007

Disputing the issue over homosexuality has not been productive for the church, said the head of The Episcopal Church. But being open to conversation is vital, she added.

Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori wrapped up a three-day, 15-town marathon tour of western Kansas Wednesday. While The Episcopal Church faces a growing exodus of parishes that believe the U.S. Anglican arm has departed from Christian orthodoxy, Episcopalians numbering from 10 to 220 at churches in the Diocese of Western Kansas welcomed Jefferts Schori, who they say has not sugar-coated difficult subjects.

"It is what is," said Jefferts Schori, responding to a question about gay bishop V. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire whose consecration in 2003 widened divisions in The Episcopal Church and the global Anglican Communion.
the rest

Colson: Christians must stop 'privatizing' faith
Allie Martin
June 21, 2007

Chuck Colson says attacks in America against Christianity are increasing in scope, frequency, and intensity. Christians, he says, must be ready to defend a biblical worldview in an anti-Christian society.

The world is more dangerous today than ever before, says the founder of
Prison Fellowship. Colson says Christians -- clergy and laity alike -- must do a better job of engaging the culture and answering the attacks against their faith. In the U.S., he says, that includes being on guard against radical Islam and standing strong in the battle for truth.

"We have a great, fabulous answer, because Christianity has been the most humanizing influence in human history," Colson says. "Christianity is the only belief system open to all people -- rich, poor, black, white, east, west; it's a universal appeal."
the rest

Colson: The Utopian Nightmare

AMA to vote on "internet/video-game addiction" as medical condition
By Linda Shrieves Orlando Sentinel
June 21 2007

So you think your teenager is addicted to his Xbox?

You may be right — and if the American Medical Association has its way, video game addiction could become a legitimate medical condition.

It may sound like a bunch of hooey to a nation of Wii, Xbox and PlayStation enthusiasts, but next week, at the AMA's national meeting in Chicago, delegates will vote on a recommendation that "Internet/video-game addiction" be classified as a formal diagnosis.
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Enormous Hindu temple going up in Georgia
Giant symbol of Hindu faith

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Philip Warner watches the white limestone wonder rising across the street from his vantage point at the UPS Store on Rockbridge Road in Lilburn.

The store manager keeps a pair of binoculars handy to observe construction of one of the largest Hindu temples in the United States.

I think it's amazing. We have a landmark that's not the Big Chicken," Warner said, referring to the Marietta landmark. "We have Cobb County beat."

Customers constantly comment on the towering sanctuary that will open in late August — the closest metro Atlanta may ever come to having its own Taj Mahal.

With hand-carved stone spires that tower 75 feet, it will be the tallest building in Lilburn, dominating the intersection of Rockbridge Road and Lawrenceville Highway.
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Thousands attend solstice party
Thursday, 21 June 2007

More than 20,000 people attended this year's summer solstice celebration at Stonehenge.

A total of 24,094 people witnessed dawn break over the ancient stones, compared with 18,700 last year. The sun rose at 0458 BST in overcast conditions.

Many apparently heeded advice to come by public transport and fewer cars than previous years were at the scene.

Four arrests were made at the event, which Wiltshire police described as "very peaceful".

Druids, Pagans, hedonists and hippies were among those who attended an all-night party at the stones.
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Primatial address opens 38th General Synod of The Anglican Church of Canada
20 JUNE 2007

Presidential Address delivered by Archbishop Andrew Hutchison, at the opening service of General Synod in the Cathedral Church of St. John in Winnipeg.

The Most Reverend Andrew S. Hutchison, 12th Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada

And I, if I be lifted up, will draw all people unto me

The theme for this 38th General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada is "Draw the Circle Wide." It is from a song by Bishop Gordon Light, and is consistent with the intention of the Lord of the Church to draw all people to himself. Since Christ was lifted up from the earth the circle of his love has grown ever wider through the centuries, now encompassing every continent and island on the planet. And from our beginnings as Anglicans our circle has grown ever wider - geographically certainly, as we are now present in 164 countries of the world, but also spiritually, culturally and socially. From the time of the Elizabethan Settlement we have been an inclusive Church, holding together the convictions of both Puritans and Episcopalians in a single ecclesial body. We have widened the circle to include men and women once consigned to the margins of life, and have recognized our Lord's preferential option for the poor and the oppressed. And here we are, from every part of Canada, with international partners and guests, together drawn to him who was lifted up on the cross for our sakes. By sharing the new life he has won for us, we give glory to God, and strengthen one another to serve in his name the world he loves.
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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Albert Mohler: Clueless in Seattle -- Can You Be Both a Christian and a Muslim?
Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Members of the Episcopal Church must brace themselves these days when they pick up the newspaper. The church is currently roiled by controversies over homosexuality and a host of other issues. Indeed, the Episcopal Church, US [ECUSA] is in danger of losing its relationship with the larger Anglican Communion over the issue of homosexuality alone.

As if that were not sufficient to fret the faithful, alone comes the Rev. Ann Holmes Redding of Seattle. Sunday's edition of
The Seattle Times featured a major article on Rev. Redding and her claim to be both an Episcopal priest and a practicing Muslim. She is serious, of course, which is what makes the story so interesting. the rest

New York: Assembly OKs gay marriage
Cara Matthews
Albany bureau

(June 20, 2007) — ALBANY — The state Assembly approved gay-marriage legislation Tuesday by a vote of 85-61, largely a symbolic action this year to demonstrate increasing support for the measure because it has no chance of passing the Senate.

Assembly members cited personal experiences, religious beliefs, societal norms, polls, constitutional rights, the Bible and other factors to explain their votes on the bill, which would give same-sex couples the same legal status, benefits and protections heterosexual couples have. The legislation would not require members of the clergy to perform same-sex marriages.

The bill's lead sponsor in the Democrat-led Assembly, Daniel O'Donnell, D-Manhattan, said the bill has nothing to do with religion, which a number of lawmakers said was their reason for opposing it. The brother of celebrity Rosie O'Donnell, he is gay and has had a partner for 26 years.
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Robert A. J. Gagnon: Case Not Made:
A Response to Prof. John Thorp’s “Making the Case” for Blessing
Homosexual Unions in the Anglican Church of Canada
June 19, 2007

A 29-page paper entitled “Making the Case: The Blessing of Same Sex Unions in the Anglican Church of Canada” (May 2007) has been circulated to all the delegates at the 2007 General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada. The writer of the paper is a certain John Thorp, who is a professor of philosophy at the University of Western Ontario. A copy of the paper can be found on the web at the Anglican Church of Canada website at

Although Thorp apologizes in his preface for the limited scope of his essay, this does not stop him from making many bold claims. He ends with the following: “Gay liberation is clearly the work of the Spirit. How can it reasonably be judged otherwise?” (p. 29; his emphasis). He believes that the case he has made for blessing homosexual unions at three levels—Scripture, Tradition, and Reason—“easily overcomes the surface prohibitions” against homosexual practice in Scripture (p. 19; my emphasis).

The reality of the matter is quite different. I see very little evidence that he is even aware of the major counterarguments to his position, much less that he responds effectively to these arguments. This circumstance apparently forms the basis for his overconfidence. True, he has some understanding of the philosophical discussions in ancient Greece; see, for example, his essay “The Social Construction of Homosexuality” in Phoenix 46.1 (1992): 54-61 (online at But his lack of expertise in biblical studies, theology, and science shows throughout the essay. Even where one would expect him to be strongest, namely in his own area of philosophical argumentation, the presentation is surprisingly weak. the rest

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

It is not that God is stingy and must be coaxed, for He "giveth liberally and upbraideth not." It is that we ourselves are so shallow and sinful that we need to tarry before Him until our restless natures can be stilled and the clamor of outside voices be deadened so that we can hear His voice. Such a state is not easily reached, and the men God uses have paid a price in wrestlings and prevailing prayer. But it is such men who rise from their knees confident of His power and go forth to speak with authority. ...Vance Havner photo

Fort Worth Leadership Responds to Executive Council Actions

The adversarial relationship between the Diocese of Fort Worth and the leadership of The Episcopal Church was exacerbated by two decisions made by Executive Council during their June 11-14 meeting, according to a June 19 statement issued jointly by the Rt. Rev. Jack Leo Iker, Bishop of Fort Worth, and the diocesan standing committee.

During its meeting in Parsippany, N.J., Executive Council rejected a pastoral scheme proposed by the primates last February in response to a request for alternate primatial oversight made by seven dioceses. In Resolution NAC-023, Council also
declared “null and void” amendments made by four dioceses Fort Worth, Pittsburgh, Quincy and San Joaquin – qualifying their accession to the constitution and canons of the General Convention.

“That the council would attempt to interfere now, nearly 20 years after this diocese first amended its constitution, is evidence of an illegitimate magisterial attitude that has emerged in the legislative function of TEC,” states a
release signed by Bishop Iker and the Very Rev. Ryan Reed, president of the standing committee. the rest

Second Lawsuit Filed Afainst St. John's Anglican Church by Diocese of San Diego
Posted by Kendall Harmon

(Press release)

Statement in Response to Second Lawsuit Filed
By The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego Against St. John’s Anglican Church

Fallbrook, Calif. – June 19, 2007 – Having lost a lawsuit filed against St. John’s Anglican Church and its volunteer board members last year, we are deeply disappointed that the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego and its Bishop, James R. Mathes, have been caught up in the national tidal wave of lawsuits being filed by The Episcopal Church against local church congregations that have realigned with other Provinces of the Worldwide Anglican Communion, and instead have filed another senseless and intolerant lawsuit against St. John’s in an attempt to confiscate all of its church property, including the sanctuary, Bibles, hymnals and office files.

The diocese had filed suit against Father Donald Kroeger, nine church volunteers, and St. John’s in late 2006 in an attempt to wrestle away its property. The San Diego Superior Court rejected this claim, and entered judgment in favor of the St. John’s defendants.
the rest @ TitusOneNine

Network Announces Annual Council Meeting for July 30-31, 2007

Over 80 representatives of the Anglican Communion Network will gather at St. Vincent’s Cathedral in Bedford, Texas for two full days July 30–31 for the Network’s Annual Council Meeting. This will be the third meeting of its kind since the birth of the Network in March 2004. The Bible teacher for the meeting will be the Most Rev. Greg Venables, Archbishop of the Southern Cone.

The press is welcome to attend plenary sessions of the council meeting. Press credentials can be obtained by registering online at Suzanne Gill, Director of Communications for the Network Diocese of Fort Worth, will be coordinating press on site and can be reached at (817) 244–2885. The meeting is otherwise closed to the public.
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"What Would Jesus Buy?" Film Faces Tough Sell
June 19, 2007

SILVER SPRING, Maryland (Reuters) - The makers of "What Would Jesus Buy?" have a problem -- how do you sell a film documenting performance artist Rev. Billy and his Stop Shopping Gospel Choir on a guerrilla U.S. tour against consumerism?

The film follows the white-suited, big-haired Rev. Billy and his 35-member choir as they hit the road in two biodiesel-fueled buses in December 2005.

They invade shopping malls, megastores and Starbucks coffee shops with a message preached in mock-religious fervor that there is evil -- a looming "shopocalypse" -- at the heart of U.S. consumer culture.
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A conservative's answer to Wikipedia
Seeing a liberal bias on the popular online encyclopedia, a teacher launches Conservapedia -- to give a different angle on the facts, he says.

By Stephanie Simon Times Staff Writer
June 19, 2007

Andy Schlafly was appalled. He was teaching a history class to home-schooled teens and one student had just turned in an assignment that dated events as "BCE," before the common era — rather than "BC," before Christ."

Where did that come from?" he demanded.

Her answer:

At that, Schlafly knew he had to act. In his mind, the popular online encyclopedia — written and edited by self-appointed experts worldwide — was riddled with liberal bias. Dating events without referring to the New Testament was just one example. How about Wikipedia's entry on golfer Zach Johnson, winner of the 2007 Masters? Not a single word about how Johnson gave credit for his win to Jesus Christ.

Thus was born — labeled "a conservative encyclopedia you can trust."
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Toronto to American Homosexuals: "We're as Gay as it Gets"
By John Jalsevac
TORONTO, Ontario
June 18, 2007

( - Toronto's tourism board has launched a new campaign to attract big-spending homosexual American tourists. The catch-phrase of the newest effort to paint Toronto as the place to go for homosexuals is: "Toronto: As gay as it gets."

According to Tourism Toronto, which has been working with Gay Marketing Advisory Group to develop the new initiative, the intention is to show that Toronto is more than simply accepting of, or friendly towards homosexuals.

Homosexual activist Councillor Kyle Rae, who is playing a central role to the new strategy, said, "The tag line 'Toronto: As gay as it gets' comes out of people talking about their cities as being gay-friendly. Toronto's not gay-friendly -- it's gay," Rae said.
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Men Conceived Through Fertility Treatment Have a Sperm Count Half the Normal, Danish Study Reports
By Elizabeth O'Brien
Denmark, June 19, 2007

( - A study conducted in Denmark found that the sperm count of men who are conceived by fertility treatments is up to 50 percent lower than normal.

Published in March 1 by the American Journal of Epidemiology (AJE), the study was entitled, "The Fertility Treatment and Reproductive Health of Male Offspring: A Study of 1,925 Young Men from the General Population." The AJE explains that all 1,925 Danish participants were undergoing compulsory medical testing at the time for army fitness requirements. The volunteers were required to give both a semen sample and a blood sample and then answer a questionnaire.
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New York's state Assembly debates gay marriage bill
Associated Press - June 19, 2007

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - A bill to legalize same-sex marriage in New York was debated in the state Assembly this evening.

The measure is sponsored by the openly gay brother of entertainer Rosie O'Donnell and supported by Governor Spitzer.

Assemblyman Daniel O'Donnell predicted he would have more than the 76 votes needed to win approval of the measure in the 150-member Democratic-controlled chamber. But the bill is not expected to be acted on anytime soon in the Republican-led state Senate.

In opening debate on the Assembly floor, O'Donnell told his colleagues that civil unions, a process permitted in neighboring Vermont, just wasn't good enough.ew York's state Assembly debates gay marriage bill.
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Rejected Episcopal Priest Up Again for Election
Lillian Kwon
Christian Post Reporter
Tue, Jun. 19 2007

The Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina has again nominated a conservative bishop whose first election had been thrown out.

The Standing Committee of the Diocese of South Carolina met early this month and agreed to call for a special convention to elect a bishop on Aug. 4 at St. James Church.

The unanimous nomination on June 9 of the Very Rev. Mark Lawrence as the next bishop of the diocese comes by the prediction of some bishops who felt Lawrence should have been consecrated the first time in March.
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Monday, June 18, 2007

Slowly, all through the universe, that temple of God is being built. Wherever, in any world, a soul, by free-willed obedience, catches the fire of God's likeness, it is set into the growing walls, a living stone. When, in your hard fight, in your tiresome drudgery, or in your terrible temptation, you catch the purpose of your being and give yourself to God, and so give Him the chance to give Himself to you, your life -- a living stone -- is taken up and set into that growing wall. Wherever souls are being tried and ripened, in whatever commonplace and homely ways, there God is hewing out the pillars for His temple. Oh, if the stone can only have some vision of the temple of which it is to be a part forever, what patience must fill it as it feels the blows of the hammer, and knows that success for it is simply to let itself be wrought into what shape the Master wills. ... Phillips Brooks photo

Diocesan Chancellors Rebuff Council Accession Declaration

The chancellors of the dioceses of Fort Worth, Quincy, Pittsburgh and San Joaquin have rejected the Executive Council’s assertion that changes the dioceses had made to their accession clauses are null and void.

At its meeting last week, Executive Council approved a
resolution declaring “null and void” attempts by the dioceses to revise their constitutions to qualify their accession to the Constitution and Canons of the General Convention. the rest

Diocesan Chancellors Reject Attempted Interference by Executive Council

September Bishops' Meeting Takes Shape

A June 5 letter to the House of Bishops from Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori outlines details of the house’s September meeting in New Orleans.

The meeting will begin with a dinner on the evening of Sept. 19. Bishop Jefferts Schori wrote that “the planning committee during its recent conference call thought it would be important to gather as a community (bishops and spouses/partners) before formal sessions begin on September 20.”

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams will arrive following the bishops’ dinner. At its spring retreat, the House of Bishops
requested that the Presiding Bishop negotiate a meeting with Archbishop Williams and the primates’ Standing Committee prior to the Sept. 30 deadline for a response to the primates’ communiqué. the rest

Church 'poised to cut ties to state'
By Jonathan Petre, Religion Correspondent

The Church of England could begin severing its links with the state next month when it debates whether the Prime Minister should continue choosing cathedral deans.

The debate at the General Synod in York will be initiated by one of its most senior members, Canon Christina Baxter, the chairman of the House of Laity and a member of the Archbishops' Council.

It comes at a critical moment for the Church as Gordon Brown, who will shortly take over as Prime Minister, has indicated that he wants to reform the whole area of ecclesiastical appointments.
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Role of Pastor's Wife has Changed Since Ruth Graham's Era
Ruth Graham saw wife's role as a calling

By Rachel Zoll
AP Religion Writer
Mon, Jun. 18 2007

When she agreed to marry Billy Graham, Ruth Bell Graham said she knew her life would "be lost in Bill's." For her generation, the pastor's wife was expected to work solely in service to her husband and his flock. There was no job title, no pay and enormous pressure to be perfect.

Today, ministers' wives are forging a different role, through their own careers or as very public, equal partners with their husbands.

Ruth Graham, whose memorial service is Saturday in Montreat, N.C., was too strong-willed and vibrant to disappear completely behind the world's best-known evangelist. Admirers noted after her death Thursday at age 87 that she became her husband's most trusted adviser. But she still abandoned many of her personal goals for the sake of his ministry.

As women have gained independence in society at large, awareness about what pastors' wives provide the church also has grown. Seminaries have started support and educational programs for the spouses. Web sites and chat rooms for such women have sprung up around the Internet.
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Gaza's Christians fear for their lives
Jun. 18, 2007

Christians living in Gaza City on Monday appealed to the international community to protect them against increased attacks by Muslim extremists. Many Christians said they were prepared to leave the
Gaza Strip as soon as the border crossings are reopened.

The appeal came following a series of attacks on a Christian school and church in Gaza City over the past few days.

Father Manuel Musalam, leader of the small Latin community in the Gaza Strip, said masked gunmen torched and looted the Rosary Sisters School and the Latin Church.

"The masked gunmen used rocket-propelled grenades to storm the main entrances of the school and church," he said. "Then they destroyed almost everything inside, including the Cross, the Holy Book, computers and other equipment."
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Pope puts his weight behind the revival of Mass in Latin
June 18, 2007
Paul Bompard in Rome

The Pope has signed a document that re-opens the way to the optional use of the old Latin Mass, replaced by liturgy in the local language in the late 1960s, it was reported yesterday.
The document is expected to be published within the next few weeks. Known as a motu proprio, signifying that it is the Pope’s personal initiative, it reflects Benedict XVI’s thinking on the subject since long before he was elected pontiff.

While, as Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, he was Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, he repeatedly expressed sympathy for those Catholics who felt nostalgia for the traditional Latin rite which dated back to the Middle Ages, although when it came to discipline he took stern action against the ultra-conservative Catholic splinter group led by the French archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, who rejected the reforms of the Second Vatican Council and for whom the use of the Latin Mass was a banner.
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Conflict of interest
Abortion: Missouri bill takes those who earn money on abortion out of the sex-ed business

Lynn Vincent

The unusual pro-life bill that survived a Democratic filibuster attempt to reach the Missouri governor's desk in late May was actually born outside an abortion clinic. In the summer of 2005, Mary Maschmeier, a longtime sidewalk counselor, was standing outside the Planned Parenthood clinic on Forest Park Avenue in St. Louis when she saw a yellow school bus drive up, filled with kids.

"I stopped the driver and asked him why he was bringing children to the clinic," Maschmeier said. The driver said the kids were from the local Boys and Girls Club. He was delivering them to Planned Parenthood for a sex-ed class, part of the club's summer program, he said.

Maschmeier knew that Planned Parenthood also provided sex education classes in local public schools. That's when it hit her: In allowing an organization that makes money terminating pregnancies to teach kids how not to get pregnant, the state of Missouri was allowing the fox to guard the henhouse. "That's when I realized, hey, we need to work on this," she said.
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Kilauea rumbles with 260 quakes
The event's duration has scientists unsure what will be left when the shaking stops

By Laurie Aulau

In what geologists call a rare occurrence, a swarm of more than 260 small earthquakes rattled the Upper East Rift Zone of Kilauea Volcano beginning at 2:15 a.m. yesterday, shaking nearby residents throughout the day.

Geologists said a buildup of magma below ground is creating the quakes, reducing the lava flow at the Pu'u O'o vent, but the long-term significance, if any, remained unclear. One possibility was the formation of new eruption vents at the volcano, which has been spewing lava continuously since 1983.

Rangers closed down most of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park yesterday and evacuated 11 campers as a precaution. The earthquakes were small, with the biggest measuring at 4.0, not enough to trigger a tsunami.
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