Saturday, November 10, 2007

Those who think themselves as little people in little places, if committed to Christ and living His Lordship in the whole of life, may by God's grace, change the flow of our generation. ...Francis A. Schaeffer photo

D.C. imam declares Muslim takeover-plan
Washington-based cleric working toward 'Islamic State of North America' by 2050
November 10, 2007
By Art Moore

A Washington, D.C., imam states explicitly on the website for his organization that he is part of a movement working toward replacement of the U.S. government with "the Islamic State of North America" by 2050.

With branches in Oakland, Los Angeles, San Diego, Sacramento and Philadelphia, the group As-Sabiqun – or the Vanguard – is under the leadership of Abdul Alim Musa in the nation's capital. the rest

Philadelphia Posts Gay-Welcoming Street Markers in Center City
John McDevitt

A dedication ceremony was held Wednesday afternoon to unveil street signs to define Philadelphia's famed "gayborhood."

Singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," a group of about 100 gathered at the corner of 13th and Locust Streets, in the Washington West neighborhood, where one of 36 discreet rainbow signs were unveiled. The sign is the same size as the Locust Street sign and fastened directly beneath it.
the rest

Midwest native elected Episcopal bishop of Chicago
By Margaret Ramirez Tribune religion reporter
November 10, 2007

The Reverend Jeffrey Lee was elected the new Episcopal bishop of Chicago on Saturday, culminating an election that drew world-wide attention to select the next leader of the 41,000 member church.

At their annual diocesan convention in suburban Wheeling, church leaders elected Lee from a slate of eight candidates, which included a lesbian priest, Rev. Tracey Lind.Lee is rector of St. Thomas Church in Medina, Wash. He becomes Chicago's 12th bishop and succeeds the Rev. William D. Persell, who has served as bishop since March 1999.
the rest

Episcopal Diocese passes on gay candidate for bishop

Diocese of Chicago election:
The Rev. Jeffrey D. Lee Elected on Second Ballot


Sunday, November 11, 2007
International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church


A pastor from a restricted nation told me about the time in prison when he was waiting to be executed at any moment. I asked him how he could handle that situation. He answered, 'I could feel your prayers in the cell! I knew that Christian brothers and sisters around the world were praying for me right then. Some nights I felt as if there were thousands of brothers and sisters with me in the cell and that we were all celebrating God's grace. That gave me hope during that worst time in my life. Actually I have never felt Christian love in such a strong way.'
the rest

Chuck Colson:
Why You're Needed to Pray for Our Persecuted Brethren

It is NOT about the Property
Commentary by Robin G. Jordan
Saturday, November 10, 2007

Who will really benefit from the property litigation in which a number of dioceses and the national church are now involved? Or the threatened lawsuits against bishops who lead their dioceses out of The Episcopal Church and the departing congregations? Will this litigation really secure the use of church property and other assets for future generations of Episcopalians?

The Episcopal Church has been steadily declining. In the past 6 years TEC has lost 173,002 members, or 7.4%, a loss of 1.2% per year. This amounts to an average loss of 28,834 members per year, or losing a diocese the size of the diocese of Ohio per year. It also amounts to losing an average of 79 members per day. In 2005 the average parish in TEC had 174 members. So this amounts to losing an average parish every two - three days for 6 years.
the rest

Judge Allows Pharmacists to Refuse 'Morning-After' Pill
Lawrence Jones
Christian Post Reporter
Sat, Nov. 10 2007

A federal judge has blocked a new Washington state requirement from forcing pharmacists to dispense “morning-after” birth control pills even if it is contrary to their moral or religious beliefs.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton ruled Thursday that pharmacists can refuse to sell the morning-after pill, known also as Plan B, or other objectionable prescriptions if they refer the customer to another nearby source.

"[T]he regulations appear to target religious practice in a way forbidden by the Constitution" and "appear to intentionally place a significant burden on the free exercise of religion for those who believe life begins at conception,” Leighton wrote in the court order.
the rest

In your face
Kind, happy, despairing, cruel, proud, liquid with decay or gleaming white?

Andrée Seu

Excerpt: Ah, but then there is Stephen, so filled with the Spirit that at his kangaroo court trial, "Gazing at him, all who sat in the council saw that his face was like the face of an angel" (Acts 6:15).

I have started asking God for a face like that, a face like the visages of the 24 elders encircling the throne on better thrones than the ones Polly and Digory saw, faces gleaming white because they always look upon the Lamb at the center. It's the first thing people will see of me when I walk the dog. And I'm hoping it will sometimes lead to second and third things

Full essay-excellent! art

UK: New law could make gay jokes illegal
By Toby Helm, Chief Political Correspondent

The right to crack jokes or be rude about homosexuals could fall victim to new government laws to stamp out "homophobic" behaviour, Rowan Atkinson, the Blackadder star warned yesterday.

Atkinson, who mounted a successful campaign in 2004 to
water down legislation aimed at criminalising expressions of religious hatred, has returned to the fray to defend the art of gay leg-pulling.

His concern is that Labour ministers are so obsessed with creating laws to stop people being rude about each other that they are putting in danger the right to free speech and, equally dear to his heart, the comedian's craft.
the rest

Fort Worth bishop warned by church's presiding leader
Associated Press
Nov. 10, 2007

FORT WORTH, Texas — The presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church warned the leader of the conservative Fort Worth diocese this week that he could face discipline if he continues to back proposals to separate from the U.S. church.

The warning was issued in advance of a meeting next week in which Fort Worth will consider taking steps to leave the national church over deep differences in biblical interpretation.

"I call upon you to recede from this direction and to lead your diocese on a new course that recognizes the interdependent and hierarchical relationship between the national Church and its dioceses and parishes," Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said in a letter Thursday to Fort Worth Bishop Jack Iker.
the rest

Clarence Thomas' triumph
R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr.
November 9, 2007

A few weeks back when Clarence Thomas' "My Grandfather's Son: A Memoir" first came out, there was a flurry of commentary on him and the book.

From conservatives there was praise. From the liberals there was a vaguely concealed sense of shock. To them, he seemed sooo angry. Wait a minute. I thought they admired anger. Think of their approbation of the Angry Left. Now the hubbub has quieted down. In fact the book is hardly mentioned. This is typical of the circumstances today surrounding the publication of books. When a book that somehow matters comes out, there is a transient period of excitement, a mixture of hallelujahs or spitballs — then complete silence.
the rest

Australian Anglicans open way for women bishops
by Kevin Donovan
Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Anglican Church of Australia's decision-making body has voted to amend legislation at Saturday's Melbourne Synod paving the way for women to be appointed bishops.

The development comes after the diocese had already voted in 2003 to accept the principle of consecrating women as bishops.
the rest

Friday, November 09, 2007

The holy and most glorious God invites us to come to Him, to converse with Him, to ask from Him such things as we need, and to experience what a blessing there is in fellowship with Him. He has created us in His own image and has redeemed us by His own Son, so that in prayer with Him we might find our highest glory and salvation. ...Andrew Murray art

'Realignment' of Anglican Communion underway
Ruth Gledhill Religion Correspondent of The Times
November 9, 2007

Ruth Gledhill's weblog

One of the largest provinces in the Anglican Church has voted to “extend its jurisdiction” to cover the whole of the US.

The decision marks the formal start of a "realignment" of the Anglican Communion in the row over gays and could help stave off actual schism.

The province of the Southern Cone, which includes Argentina, Peru and Chile and is headed by expatriate British Bishop Greg Venables, is offering itself as a “safe haven” for traditionalist US dioceses that wish to secede over gays.

The plan will allow disaffected US dioceses to leave the oversight of The Episcopal Church Primat Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori but to remain within the body of the Anglican Communion and in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury.
the rest

Peggy Noonan: Things Are Tough All Over But Mrs. Clinton is no Iron Lady.
Friday, November 9, 2007

The story as I was told it is that in the early years of her prime ministership, Margaret Thatcher held a meeting with her aides and staff, all of whom were dominated by her, even awed. When it was over she invited her cabinet chiefs to join her at dinner in a nearby restaurant. They went, arrayed themselves around the table, jockeyed for her attention. A young waiter came and asked if they'd like to hear the specials. Mrs. Thatcher said, "I will have beef."

Yes, said the waiter. "And the vegetables?"

"They will have beef too."

Too good to check, as they say. It is certainly apocryphal, but I don't want it to be. It captured her singular leadership style, which might be characterized as "unafraid."

She was a leader. the rest

Indonesia: Forty-One Christian Leaders Jailed!
By Kenneth L. Ervin, II

How does one “abuse the Koran” in Indonesia? Simply by praying that all Muslims “come to know Christ.” That’s the lesson that 41 Christian leaders learned this week as an Indonesian judge sentenced them each to five years in prison for the offense.

According to Voice of the Martyrs (VOM) Australia, the Christians were part of Campus Crusade for Christ. During a December 2006 prayer meeting, “they prayed for their nation asking that all Muslim leaders come to know Christ.” Unbeknownst to the Christians gathered there, the comments were being caught on video. That footage founds its way into the hands of a Muslim organization, and charges were filed.

the rest photo

Britain's Escalating War on Christianity
Hal G.P. Colebatch

The war being waged by the quasi-establishment and quasi-government Left in Britain against the nation's own traditions, values, identity and, perhaps most of all, religion, has been escalated and its battle-lines redefined with a report by a leading Labour Party-aligned think-tank, the Institute for Public Policy Research, recommending that Christmas, which cannot be obliterated, should be down-graded to promote multiculturalism.

The report says that because it would be hard to "expunge" Christmas from the national calendar (although this would apparently be desirable), public organizations must be made to give non-Christian religious festivals equal footing.
the rest

New “Gender Identity” Law Would Have The Effect of Legalizing Indecent Exposure to Minors
“Weekend Transgenders” to Use Women’s Shower Rooms and Bathrooms?
November 8, 2007

Montgomery County, MD -- A bill before the Montgomery County, Maryland Council puts girls and women at risk by opening women’s restrooms and locker rooms to men who dress as women, warns Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX). The bill virtually eliminates gender distinctions by allowing Montgomery County residents to choose if they are male or female even when the choice conflicts with their biological sex.

The bill, slated for a vote on Tuesday, Nov. 13, would add ‘gender identity’ as a protected class for ‘transgenders.’ It would guarantee the right to use public facilities consistent with the person's gender identity "publicly and exclusively expressed or asserted." No sex change is necessary.

As an organization that aids former transgenders, PFOX can attest that many transgenders prefer to dress and act publicly and exclusively as a woman or man on weekends and then as their birth gender during the work week. These are known as "weekend transgenders." Pedophiles could also put on a dress and assert they are exclusively female in order to get near naked children in swimming pool locker rooms.

the rest

Talk of ‘provision’ as Pittsburgh votes to secede
English bishops back Duncan over warning letter

by Pat Ashworth
9 November, 2007

THE diocese of Pittsburgh has voted to start the process of amending its constitution so that it can secede from the Episcopal Church in the United States and align with another Anglican province.

The resolution, passed by a clergy vote of 109 to 24 and a deputies vote of 118 to 58, has no effect unless a second vote goes the same way next year. It "signifies an intention, gives a warning, opens a possibility, introduces a period of preparation for anticipated consequences", said the Bishop, the Rt Revd Robert Duncan, in his address.
the rest

TLC: Southern Cone Offers 'Safe Haven' for American Dioceses

Dioceses that wish to secede from The Episcopal Church because of disputes over doctrine and discipline will be given an ecclesiastical home in the Church of the Province of the Southern Cone.

Meeting Nov 5-7 at St. Paul’s Church, Valparaíso, Chile, the Southern Cone synod voted to extend the province’s jurisdiction to North America, allowing dioceses and other ecclesial entities to affiliate with the province.
the rest

Other stories:
P.B. Issues Warning to Fort Worth

Pending Retirements Complicate Disciplinary Proceedings

Bishops of Texas, Idaho Announce Plans to Step Down

Archbishop of Canterbury:
greetings for Diwali
November 9, 2007

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, has sent a message of greeting to the Hindu community for their celebration of the festival of Diwali. Dr Williams praised the Hindu Community for their contribution to so many areas of life in this country, and also expressed the hope that Christians and Hindus "should renew and further develop the local and national frameworks within which we can explore and appreciate our common and our distinctive characteristics".

Letter here


Added: Indian Evangelist Killed, Sacrificed for Hindu 'Goddess'

Anglicans driven closer to schism as new ‘haven’ emerges for US conservatives
by Jennifer Gold
Friday, November 9, 2007

The Anglican Communion’s chances of avoiding a fully blown schism took another dramatic setback Thursday when a leading conservative archbishop approved plans to implement breakaway dioceses in the US.
the rest

Albert Mohler:"Irreconcilable Truth Claims" -- Watch for Anglican Developments
Friday, November 09, 2007

Pressures in the Anglican Communion continue to build as conservative leaders around the globe now call for a postponement of the communion's next great gathering -- the Lambeth Conference scheduled for London in 2008.

This is how
The Times [London] reports the story:

The evangelical Archbishops who head the "Global South" grouping have called on the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, to postpone next year's Lambeth Conference.

Several senior bishops, including the Bishop of Rochester, Dr Michael Nazir-Ali, have already warned they could boycott the conference, the ten-yearly gathering of Anglican Communion bishops from across the globe, because of the row over gays.
the rest

Tony Blair could become Roman Catholic in time to celebrate Christmas Mass
November 9, 2007
Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent

Read Ruth Gledhill's blog on the Blair conversion

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair could be formally received into the Roman Catholic Church in time to celebrate Mass at Westminster Catholic cathedral at Christmas.

According to a report in today’s Tablet, Mr Blair is to be received into the Church in the next few weeks.

Mr Blair, who last month chose America’s most high-profile Catholic fundraising event as the forum to make his first important speech since leaving office, is expected to be received by Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor in his private chapel of Archbishop’s House. the rest

ENS: Fort Worth bishop receives notice of possible consequences if withdrawal effort continues
By Jan Nunley
November 08, 2007

[Episcopal News Service] Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has made public another letter of warning sent to a bishop actively seeking to withdraw his diocese from the Episcopal Church.

The letter to Bishop Jack Leo Iker of the
Diocese of Fort Worth notifies him that such a step would force her to take action to bring the diocese and its leadership into line with the mandates of the national Church.

The first of the letters was sent to Bishop Robert Duncan of the Diocese of Pittsburgh on October 31. Letters to other bishops will follow.

the rest

Comments at Stand Firm

At this school, spelling has a new meaning
Witches bother, bewilder some; others let them 'do their thing'
By Judy Keen

ROSSVILLE, Ill. — When Witch School came to town, Mayor Terry Prillaman stopped in to welcome the owners, as he does whenever a new business opens. "If you don't like them, don't patronize them," he says. "It's like a tattoo parlor: You don't have to go in."

Youth pastor Andy Thomas, though, believes the arrival of witches in this town of 1,200 created a "spiritual battle" pitting "the forces of darkness against the forces of light."
the rest

LAPD plan draws ire from Muslims
Groups charge religious profiling
By Mimi Hall

A counterterrorism project in Los Angeles that would collect information about Muslim neighborhoods is drawing outrage from Islamic groups and civil libertarians who say it unjustly singles out residents based on faith and could lead to unconstitutional police tactics.
the rest

Feds ban grandma's angel ornament on Christmas tree
HUD orders residents to avoid Jesus in decorations

November 9, 2007

Federal Department of Housing and Urban Development officials have announced a ban on any decorations in HUD housing complexes that mention Jesus or represent religion for the Christmas season, and
the American Family Association has responded with a petition drive to overturn the decision. the rest

Paul Weyrich Convinced Mitt Romney "has sincerely converted" to pro-life side
Admits Romney's religion "could be one of the biggest problems of the campaign"

By Meg Jalsevac
November 7, 2007

( - Mitt Romney's campaign for President received a major shot in the arm on Monday in the form of an official endorsement from well-known conservative leader and chairman of the Free Congress Foundation, Paul Weyrich. Despite a lingering uncertainty for many conservatives about Romney's authentic conservative persona due to his notorious 'flip-flopping' in recent years, Weyrich's endorsement joins a growing number of similar Romney endorsements from other notable conservative leaders.
the rest

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Habits are first cobwebs, then cables. The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.
...Samuel Johnson image

The Unlikely Ambassador to Islam
By Father Jonathan Morris

It sounds like the beginning of a good mystery novel — “a German Pope and a Saudi King were meeting privately behind the Vatican walls” — but, in fact, that is precisely what happened this week.

For the first time ever, a reigning monarch of Saudi Arabia came to the Vatican to meet with the Pope.

Not just any Pope; it’s the Pope of the Regensburg address — that infamous speech against religiously-motivated violence that provoked parts of the Muslim world into proving his point. And this is no ordinary monarch; he’s the leader of a Muslim country that boasts, year after year, one of the worst records of religious liberty in the world.

Strange bedfellows? Not so.
the rest photo

Orthodox Anglicans Unite in Prayer as Church Property Trial Looms
November 8, 2007

Churches within the Anglican District of Virginia (ADV) are joining together in prayer in advance of the November 13 church property trial that will take place in Fairfax County Circuit Court. Prayer services will be held at The Falls Church and Church of the Apostles in the next few days and Truro’s chapel will be open for prayer throughout the trial. All 11 of the churches named in the lawsuit, now known as Multi-Circuit Property Litigation, Case No. CL-2007-0248724, are members of ADV, an association of Anglican congregations in Virginia and a part of the Convocation of Anglicans in North America (CANA).
the rest

Tidal wave heading for English Channel poses 'extreme danger to life'
8th November 2007

A three-metre tidal surge is predicted to surge down the English Channel in the next 12 hours posing an "extreme danger to life and property", experts have warned.

Coupled with storms and high tides, the wave could leave swathes of the east coast under water, according to the Environment Agency.

A combination of gale force winds off the coast of Scotland and high tides are expected to cause floods which could breach sea defences.
the rest

Thousands told to evacuate homes as storm surge approaches

Tidal surge expected in Channel

China angrily denounces Games "Bible ban" report
November 8, 2007

BEIJING (Reuters) - China reacted angrily on Thursday to reports in the European press that the government would ban Bibles during next year's Beijing Olympics, saying it could not possibly be true.

The reports, one of which appeared in Italian sports newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport, were picked up by the Catholic News Agency and spread to U.S. media sites.
the rest

The Diocese of Virginia: Big Time Oops
Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The Diocese of Virginia has put the following up on their website and it’s so blatantly filled with major "OOPS" that it just can’t go without some sort of challenge.

The Diocese: "The dispute over property in the Diocese of Virginia entered the civil courts when the separated CANA congregations filed petitions with the courts in their jurisdictions reporting the results of their congregational votes and seeking the court’s declaration that the property belonged to the congregations."
the rest at Babyblueonline

NYT: Traditionalist Pressure Mounts on Anglican Communion
November 8, 2007

PARIS (Reuters) - Traditionalist Anglican leaders have stepped up pressure on their deeply split Communion by urging it to postpone its consultative conference and pledging more support for rebels against liberal local churches.

Nine leaders from the "Global South," known as primates, want to delay the Lambeth Conference, a 10-yearly assembly due in 2008, and hold an emergency summit of primates to resolve a crisis sparked by a gay bishop being named in the United States.

Also this week, two leading traditionalist archbishops -- Peter Akinola in Nigeria and Gregory Venables in Argentina -- vowed to continue to defend parishes and dioceses seeking to leave the Episcopal Church, the U.S. branch of Anglicanism.
the rest

First Things: Stephen Colbert and the Value of Truthiness
By Nathaniel Peters
Thursday, November 8, 2007

In the November issue of
First Things, Joseph Bottum wrote, “The weakest set of candidates in living memory has taken the field, and we still have more than a year left of watching these people, lumbering and blumbering toward the goal line.”

I thought it wrong at the time, for the dark horizon had a new blazing star: Stephen T. Colbert. But last Monday, a dolorous day in America’s history, the Democratic party of South Carolina burst my hopes and
denied Colbert a spot on their ballot. Bottum’s pessimism was right after all. Back to the blumber for the lot of us. the rest

TLC: Disciplinary Action Proceeding Against Three Resigned Bishops

The House of Bishops is proceeding with disciplinary action against three of the six bishops who have resigned from The Episcopal Church during the past year. The bishops were briefed on active cases during an executive session of the fall meeting held Sept. 20-25 in New Orleans.

An ecclesiastical trial against the Rt. Rev. William Cox is still pending, despite the fact that he
transferred to the Anglican Church of Southern Cone last March. Bishop Cox told The Living Church he was not aware that he was still a target of interest to the ecclesiastical court. the rest

Canada: Same-sex unions could split Church: new primate
Anglican Debate
Charles Lewis, National Post
Thursday, November 08, 2007

Disagreement over whether to bless same-sex unions could result in a split in the Anglican Church in Canada, its new leader says.

Archbishop Fred Hiltz, Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, said in an interview with the National Post that the Church may eventually have to face the fact it will never find agreement on the contentious issue. But, he said, some in the Church will not be able to live with same-sex blessings happening anywhere under the Anglican name and will leave.
the rest

Anglican leader offers haven to US conservatives
By Jonathan Petre, Religion Correspondent

The worldwide Anglican Church suffered a dramatic new split last night when a leading conservative archbishop approved plans to adopt breakaway American dioceses, the Daily Telegraph has learned.

Archbishop Gregory Venables is to allow conservative dioceses that are defecting from the pro-gay American branch of Anglicanism to affiliate with his South American province thousands of miles away.

The unprecedented realignment will rock the 70 million-strong worldwide Church and escalate the bitter civil war over gay clergy that is tearing it apart.
the rest photo

TLC: Southern Cone Offers 'Safe Haven' for American Dioceses

Republicans Say ENDA 'Takes Dead Aim at Religious Freedom'
Susan Jones
Senior Editor

( - The House on Wednesday passed a bill banning most employers from considering a person's "actual or perceived sexual orientation" when it comes to hiring, firing and promotion decisions. Churches and the military are exempt from the bill's provisions.

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would become the first federal law banning job discrimination against lesbians, gays, and bisexuals. Transgender people are not included in the ban, and that bothers some homosexual advocacy groups.

The House voted 235-184 to pass ENDA, but the vote is expected to be much closer in the Senate, and President Bush has said he will veto the bill if it does reach his desk.
the rest

How your representative voted on ENDA: here

Added: CWA: First Amendment Trampled With ENDA Passage

House approves ban on job bias against gays
Senate expected to soon weigh similar measure

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

WASHINGTON – The House voted Wednesday to extend the nation's employment discrimination protections to gay workers, the first time the long-proposed measure has passed either chamber of Congress.

In the debate, which lasted more than five hours, some members of Congress referred to the historic civil-rights fight against racial prejudice while others appealed to the Democratic majority not to infringe on the rights of Christians who consider homosexuality an affront to God.

Another excerpt: "But Rep. Mark Souder, R-Ind., argued that, because of the bill, "religious rights will now be trumped by sexual rights." Calling the bill a disaster for religious bookstores, which could be required to hire gay workers, he said the measure invited litigation and set "precedents that we will regret." the rest

NYT: House Approves Broad Protections for Gay Workers

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Watch the morning watch. Do not see the face of man until you have seen the face of God. Before you enter on the day with its temptations, look up into His face and hide His Word in your heart. ...FB Meyer photo

Global South Archbishops call for postponement of Lambeth
Ruth Gledhill Religion Correspondent of The Times

November 7, 2007

The evangelical Archbishops who head the "Global South" grouping have called on the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, to postpone next year's Lambeth Conference.
Several senior bishops, including the Bishop of Rochester, Dr Michael Nazir-Ali, have already warned they could boycott the conference, the ten-yearly gathering of Anglican Communion bishops from across the globe, because of the row over gays.

Today nine Primates, including Nigeria's Peter Akinola, Uganda's Luke Orombi and South East Asia's John Chew, said the conference should be postponed until all bishops could meet "in a spirit of true collegiality and unity in the faith."

Their call came just days after the 490th anniversary of the day Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Cathedral in Wittenberg, prompting the Reformation. This week, organisers of the Lambeth Conference are meeting to agree the agenda and other matters regarding the July meeting at Kent University. Dr Williams has previously indicated that he has no intention of acceding to calls to postpone it. the rest

46 members of General Synod and leaders of Church Society and Forward in Faith back Bishop Bob Duncan
November 7th, 2007

Letter published in the Church of England Newspaper

Dear Sir,

We write to inform you that we are sending the following letter of support to Bishop Bob Duncan of Pittsburgh and his fellow Bishops in the Common Cause Council of Bishops following the letter last week to the Bishop of Pittsburgh,

Dear Bishop Duncan and Bishops in Common Cause

Warm greetings from the UK.

We have read the letter from Presiding Bishop Schori to the Bishop of Pittsburgh. We want to assure you, your dioceses and parishes of our prayers and fellowship as you take your stand on our shared Anglican heritage, accepting the Holy Scriptures as the rule and ultimate standard of faith, contrary to those innovators both in the British Isles and in the Americas who wish to give primacy to the demands of contemporary culture.
the rest

TLC: Bishop Stanton Calls for Suffragan

The Diocese of Dallas recently approved the second reading of a constitutional amendment that makes accession to the constitution and canons of The Episcopal Church conditional on it remaining “a full, constituent member of the Anglican Communion.”

The amendment was one of several items on a busy agenda, which also included affirmation of Bishop James Stanton’s call for the election of a suffragan bishop. Convention met at Southfork Ranch Oct. 18-20.

The resolution approving the second reading of the constitutional change passed overwhelmingly on a voice vote by orders. Convention also approved resolutions affirming evangelism, the way that Bishop Stanton has pastorally dealt with those congregations wishing to leave The Episcopal Church and another affirming the primates’ Feb. 19 communiqué from Dar es Salaam which states that “we as a diocese do not believe that The Episcopal Church has complied with those requests.”
the rest

House begins ENDA debate
Republicans call for vote on trans amendment
By LOU CHIBBARO JR. Nov 7, 2007

The House of Representatives began its debate on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act today, marking the first time a gay employment rights bill has reached the House floor in the more than 30 years since such a bill was first introduced.

The debate, which followed French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s address before a joint session of Congress, began with a heated discussion over a rule proposed by Democrats that allows gay Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.) to introduce an amendment adding transgender protections to the bill.

In a development that drew strong opposition from Democrats, Rep. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.) introduced a motion to remove from the Democratic drafted rule a provision that would allow Baldwin to withdraw her amendment before a vote could be taken on it. Hastings’ motion, which was expected to be put to a vote, would force a vote on the Baldwin amendment.
the rest

+Peter Akinola of Nigeria:
7th November, 2007

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and our One and Only Saviour Jesus, the Christ.

I write on the 490th anniversary of that moment in Church history when Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Cathedral in Wittenberg in which he asserted, among other things, that the truth of the gospel must always take precedence over the structures of the church. It is becoming increasingly clear that we are facing a similar situation today. While it has been my hope that we would be able to share these reflections face to face it seems unlikely that we will be called to meet together in the near future and so I offer these thoughts by letter.
the rest

Tons of News at CANN
November 7th, A.D. 2007

Communiqué of the Global South Primates,
Shanghai, October 30, 2007

Cleric calls defrocking 'badge of honor'
By Valerie Richardson
November 4, 2007

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The Rev. Don Armstrong knows exactly what to do with the letter informing him that he's been officially defrocked by the Episcopal Diocese of Colorado.
He's going to frame it and hang it in his study as a "badge of honor."

"This is the last in a long line of publicity opportunities [Bishop] Rob O'Neill has been using to express his pastoral care and concern for me and my family," Mr. Armstrong said sarcastically.
the rest

A Church Divided
Sunday, 04 Nov 2007

MAITLAND, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35, Orlando) -- The dispute over ordained homosexual clergy and same-sex unions is threatening to tear apart a number of Protestant denominations which have been grappling with these issues in recent years.

The 2.2 million-member Episcopal Church, USA, is still deeply divided over how to proceed after the 2003 consecration of Rev. V. Gene Robinson as bishop of New Hampshire. Robinson is openly gay.

the rest

Lesbian among candidates in election for Episcopal bishop
November 7, 2007

The Episcopal Diocese of Chicago will elect a new bishop on Saturday. The election is receiving international attention because the slate of eight candidates includes a lesbian priest.

The Rev. Tracey Lind is seeking to become the second openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church.

After Bishop V. Gene Robinson's 2003 election in New Hampshire, divisions over the issue escalated worldwide. The 2.2-million member Episcopal Church is the U.S. branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The Chicago Diocese has about 41,000 members.

the rest

UK: Gay row after evangelical leader is appointed to human rights watchdog
By Kim Sengupta
07 November 2007

The appointment of an evangelical Christian with controversial views on homosexuality to the human rights watchdog chaired by Trevor Phillips has led to a furore among campaigners who claim his opinions make him ineligible for the job.

Secular groups have asked for the removal of the Rev Joel Edwards, a vocal campaigner against legislation banning discrimination against the gay community, from the post of commissioner of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).
the rest

Spain: The secrets behind increase in priestly vocations
Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Bishop Demetrio Fernandez of Tarazona and Bishop Josep Angel Saiz Meneses of Terrassa told the Spanish daily La Razon some of the reasons behind the explosive growth in the number of young aspirants to the priesthood


Court: Child Support Lawsuit Frivolous
Associated Press Writer

Nov 6, 2007

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- A federal appeals court has upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit nicknamed "Roe v. Wade for Men" filed by a men's rights group on behalf of a man who said he shouldn't have to pay child support for his ex-girlfriend's daughter.

A three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a decision released Tuesday, agreed with a lower court judge that Matthew Dubay's suit was frivolous.
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Christian radio forms a bridge of ministry into North Korea
7 November, 2007

North Korea (MNN) ― North Korea has begun scaling back its atomic weapons program. The rogue state has also briefly opened its doors for food relief. These are moves in the right direction, but there's a long way to go for religious freedom.
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NYT: Gay Muslims Find Freedom, of a Sort, in the U.S.
Published: November 7, 2007

SAN FRANCISCO — About 15 people marched alongside the Muslim float in this city’s notoriously fleshy Gay Pride Parade earlier this year, with various men carrying the flags of Egypt, Lebanon,
Palestine and Turkey and even Iran’s old imperial banner. the rest

Albert Mohler: Amazing Awakenings -- Will the Nation's Conscience be Awakened Too?
Wednesday, November 07, 2007

As Wesley J. Smith explains, "the reigning cultural paradigm" holds that "a life with profound cognitive dysfunction is not worth living." The dominant assessment is that a person with a diagnosis of permanent unconsciousness should be allowed to die by withdrawal of food and hydration.

But, as Smith reports in
The Weekly Standard, this "reigning cultural paradigm" is colliding with medical reality. the rest

Bibles banned from 2008 Olympic village
China also warns visitors not to bring more than single copy

November 7, 2007

Chinese officials have announced athletes who compete in the 2008 Beijing Games will be banned from having Bibles in their Olympic village housing, and even visitors are being warned not to bring more than a single Bible with them when they come to China.
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Here and nationwide, bathrooms that aren't his or hers
Rachel Smith
Issue date: 11/5/07

Gallatin junior Daan Erikson said the words on the Kimmel Center's bathroom doors can be intimidating: "men" and "women."

"They're gigantic," said Erikson, who identifies as transgender. "Having gender-neutral bathrooms alleviates the stress some students may feel about the label of 'men' or 'women' put upon them simply by entering a door."
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TIME: An Evangelical Rethink on Divorce?
Monday, Nov. 05, 2007

On questions relating to the Bible's treatment of family and morals, one might expect assurance, if not rigidity, from Evangelical Christianity. So, it may surprise many to learn how "live" the topic of divorce remains in Evangelical circles. Last month, the cover story of the monthly Christianity Today was titled "When to Separate What God has Joined: A Closer Reading on the Bible on Divorce." The heated controversy provoked by the story showed how Biblically flexible some Evangelicals can be — especially when God's word seems at odds not just with modern American behavior, but also with simple human kindness.
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Board puts faith in
'In God We Trust'
After months of debate, a Bakersfield school district votes to display posters explaining the motto in 2,300 classrooms and offices.
By Steve Chawkins
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
November 7, 2007

After months of contentious debate, a Bakersfield school district has voted to display the phrase "In God We Trust" on the walls of more than 2,300 classrooms, school libraries, administrative offices and the board's meeting room. the rest image

Study links birth control pill to artery-clogging plaque
Doctors say more research needed

By Steve Sternberg

ORLANDO — Birth control pills have been linked for the first time to plaques that could potentially endanger the heart, doctors here said Tuesday.

A study of 1,301 women ages 33 to 55 suggests that the likelihood of finding plaques in key arteries increased by 20% to 30% for every 10 years of pill use, Ernst Rietzschel, of Ghent University in Belgium, told an American Heart Association meeting here.
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Interesting shifts in the public square....

Hindu holiday of Diwali attracts attention of businesses

Michigan Voters Nix Nativity Scene on Public Property

Divide was too wide to discuss
Local churches still find common ground in ministry that eluded those in Central Florida.

By SHERRI DAY, Times Staff Writer
November 6, 2007

Six churches in the Diocese of Central Florida, which has 44,000 members and stretches from Citrus County to Vero Beach, recently announced plans to sever ties with the Episcopal Church and the diocese. Two church affiliates also plan to break away. The move brings the debate closer to the Tampa Bay area, home to 33,000 Episcopalians.


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The cross is laid on every Christian.... When Christ calls a man, He bids him come and die. It may be a death like that of the first disciples who had to leave home and work to follow Him, or it may be a death like Luther's, who had to leave the monastery and go out into the world. But it is the same death every time - death in Jesus Christ, the death of the old man at His call. Jesus' summons to the rich young man was calling him to die, because only the man who is dead to his own will can follow Christ. In fact, every command of Jesus is a call to die, with all our affections and lusts. But we do not want to die, and therefore Jesus Christ and his call are necessarily our death as well as our life.
...Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Harvard Prof Picked for Vatican Post
The Associated Press
November 05, 2007

President Bush plans to nominate Harvard University law professor Mary Ann Glendon to be his new U.S. ambassador to the Vatican.

Glendon, 69, is an anti-abortion scholar and an opponent of gay marriage who also has written on the effects of divorce and increased litigation on society. Her 1987 book 'Abortion and Divorce in Western Law' was critical of the Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that established a legal right to abortion.
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Gay channel Logo launches weekly newscast
Tue Nov 6, 2007
By Paul J. Gough

NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) - Gay-lesbian network Logo is moving into the network news business, planning to televise a half-hour weekly newscast produced by CBS News.


Fragment of ancient parchment from Bible given to Jerusalem scholars
By Anshel Pfeffer

An eight-centimeter-square piece of the 1087-year-old Aleppo Codex will be given to a representative of the Ben Zvi Institute in Jerusalem on Thursday, following 18 years during which Israeli scholars tried to retrieve it from businessman Sam Sabbagh.

Sabbagh salvaged the fragment from a burning synagogue in Aleppo, Syria in 1947.
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Senate Committee Investigating Six Major Ministries
Sen. Grassley probes "possible misuse of donations" to Benny Hinn, Joyce Meyer, and others
Ted Olsen


Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, is investigating several major church-based ministries known for their leaders' lavish lifestyles and prosperity teachings.

"Recent articles and news reports regarding possible misuse of donations made to religious organizations have caused some concern for the Finance Committee," Grassley wrote to the ministries in letters asking for detailed financial records.
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Stand Firm: “American kids, dumber than dirt”

Pope to challenge Saudi King over curbs on religious freedoms
Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent of The Times
November 6, 2007

Comment: Ruth Gledhill's Articles of Faith blog

The Pope was expected to challenge King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia about the severe restrictions on religious freedom for non-Muslims at an historic audience at the Vatican today.

Pope Benedict XVI is understood to be concerned about the rights of Christians in Saudi Arabia and about Muslim-Christian relations. The two states do not have formal diplomatic relations.
This morning's meeting – the first visit by a Saudi monarch to the Vatican – came a little more than a year after the Pope's controversial Regensburg address when he quoted a 14th-century Byzantine emperor who said that Muhammad had brought only “evil and inhuman” things.
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Pope praises 'hard-working' Christians to Saudi king

Historic Saudi visit to Vatican

Episcopal Bishops in Pa. Suspended, Warned
Philadelphia's liberal bishop accused of protecting abuser; Pittsburgh's conservative bishop warned against abandonment as diocese changes constitution.

Daniel Burke, Religion News Service

The Episcopal Bishop of Philadelphia has been barred from ministry pending a church trial to determine his culpability in protecting his brother, a former Episcopal priest who was accused of sexually abusing a minor in the 1970s.

Bishop Charles Bennison has been accused of "conduct unbecoming a member of the clergy" by an Episcopal Church committee and was barred from all ordained ministry by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori last Wednesday.
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Bella: A film apart
Priya Abraham

Talk to the creators of Bella, a quiet new film with a pro-life theme, and their faces often get a certain look: incredulous, even wonder-struck. Most of the time, they cannot believe their humble production has come so far.

And far it has come for a $3 million movie with an executive producer who had never made films, a director who had never made a feature-length film, and a lead actor who was jobless for three years. Last year Bella won the prestigious People's Choice Award at the world's largest film festival in Toronto, competing against Oscar winners such as The Departed and The Queen. In the United States it opens in 30 cities Oct. 26.
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Titusonenine: Two Posts on The Episcopal Church's membership decline

Putting TEC’s membership and attendance decline in perspective

Graphs to illustrate the post

Canada: Bishops continue moratorium on same-gender blessings
'Schismatic' activity concerns church leaders
Solange De Santis
Nov 5, 2007
London, Ont.

Canada’s Anglican bishops, at their regular fall meeting, decided to leave in place a set of pastoral guidelines concerning church services for gay couples that stops short of blessings or marriage. They also expressed serious concern about Canadian participation in activities widening the schism in the Anglican Communion.
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Billy Graham to mark 89th birthday with thoughts of heavenly reunion
Tuesday, November 6, 2007

World-renowned evangelist Billy Graham will mark his 89th birthday on Wednesday, by expressing his gratitude for his health, his family and the ongoing hope of being reunited with his wife Ruth in Heaven.


Bishop pushes for religious freedom in Saudi Arabia
Abu Dhabi, Nov. 5, 2007

( - A visit to the Vatican by Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah should lead to greater religious freedom for Christians in that country, according to the Catholic vicar for Arabia and Yemen.

"I am not expecting to be able to build a cathedral. But at least (we need) the freedom to worship in security," Bishop Paul Hinder told the Reuters news service.
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California Medical Association Rejects Assisted Suicide Neutrality
by Steven Ertelt Editor
November 5, 2007

Sacramento, CA ( -- The California Medical Association has rejected a measure sponsored by euthanasia advocates that would have weakened its official stance against legalizing assisted suicide.

Pro-euthanasia members of the doctors group introduced three resolutions to have the CMA take a neutral stance -- something that would have weakened the coalition of pro-life, disability and medical groups that have repeatedly stopped legalization bills in the California legislature.
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The world's weirdest cases
From the man who sued God to the man who sued TV for making his wife fat, people turn to lawyers for the strangest things

Gary Slapper
November 5, 2007

A meticulous collector of amusing and curious anecdotes from the world of law, Professor Gary Slapper's Case Notes column has long been a staple of The Times' Law section. From next week, his collection of legal oddities will be on display in a new column, Weird Cases. As a taster, we asked him to select 20 of his favourite bizarre disputes, prosecutions and lawsuits from the archive.

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