Saturday, September 13, 2008

Devotional: Beloved, I say, let your fears go...

Beloved, I say, let your fears go, lest they make you fainthearted. Stop inspiring fear in those around you and now take your stand in faith. God has been good and He will continue to manifest His goodness........ Let us approach these days expecting to see the goodness of the Lord manifest. Let us be strong and of good courage, for the Lord will fight for us if we stand in faith. ...Francis Frangipane image

Anglican Curmudgeon: The Chief Kaitiff Plans a Purge

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Regular readers of this site will not be surprised by the announcement from the Presiding Bishop of her intentions to bring a resolution to depose the Rt. Rev. Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh at the forthcoming fall meeting of the House of Bishops at Salt lake City. (A big tip of the Rumpolean bowler
to Greg Griffith at StandFirm for making it available in advance.)

What may yet come as a surprise to some, however, is the brazenness with which the Presiding Bishop has laid out her plans in advance. She is without shame: she has announced to the House of Bishops, five days ahead of their meeting, the parliamentary rulings she will make on the canonical objections to proceeding with the resolution, and she lays out her specious, the-end-justifies-the-means reading of Canon IV.9 so there can be no mistake. (I had predicted such rulings would be made, but at the meeting itself---not five days in advance! I hope there will be some stalwart bishops present who will make the only response to such tyranny that can be made, and who by their departure will deprive those remaining of a quorum.)

The Presiding Bishop is a tyrant in episcopal garb. The tragedy is that she is aided and abetted in this power grab by so many Episcopal jurists, who now must be dubbed "soi-disant jurists."

(An aside: Up until now on this blog, I have striven to maintain the utmost civility and respect toward the Presiding Bishop, always addressing her by her proper title and name. With this latest dastardly and cowardly ukaze from her hand, however, I am forced to join the ranks of so many others who have lost their respect for her. From this point forward, I shall address her as: "The Chief Kaitiff of The Episcopal Church.") the rest

Pastoral Letter from Bishop Robert Duncan

13th September, A.D. 2008
St. Cyprian of Carthage

TO THE CLERGY AND PEOPLE OF THE DIOCESE OF PITTSBURGH:
Beloved in the Lord,

In a letter to the House of Bishops yesterday, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori made it clear that there will be a vote this coming Thursday on whether to depose me from the ministry of the Episcopal Church. The charge is abandonment of the Communion of the Church, a charge initiated by five priests and sixteen laypeople of the Diocese of Pittsburgh. Much of the “evidence” in the case is put forward by the House of Bishops Property Task Force, drawn directly from the Calvary litigation. We have long suspected that a principal purpose in the Calvary litigation was to have me removed, by whatever means, before the realignment vote. Whatever the purported evidence, I continue to maintain that the House of Bishops “vote” will be a gross violation of the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church.

There are two things I would say, and one thing I would ask.

First, whatever happens on Thursday as to my status, the Diocese will carry forward under rules long-ago established. If I am “removed,” the Standing Committee will be the Ecclesiastical Authority. Together with all the leadership presently in place, both appointed and elected, the Standing Committee will carry us through to our October 4th Annual Convention and beyond. We as a Diocese will not be intimidated or turned from our over-riding commitment, which is faithfulness to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ within the mainstream of Anglicanism.
the rest

Presiding Bishop’s Memo Outlining Duncan Deposition

Plucked like rotting fruit from the tree of the College of Bishops' "secure" web site... I present to you the Presiding Bishop's memo detailing her plans to depose Pittsburgh bishop Bob Duncan.

September 12, 2008

Memorandum to the House of Bishops
Subject: Bishop of Pittsburgh

Sisters and Brothers:

As has been widely reported, at the forthcoming business meeting of the House in Salt Lake City on September 18, I shall present to the House the matter of the certification to me by the Title IV Review Committee that Bishop Robert W. Duncan has abandoned the Communion of this Church within the meaning of Canon IV.9. In this memorandum, I layout the background of this matter and what I see as the procedural and substantive issues that are raised by it.

the rest at Stand Firm

Massive Hurricane Ike ravages southeast Texas


Raw Video: Ike Moves Through Houston

By JUAN A. LOZANO and CHRIS DUNCAN

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) — A massive Hurricane Ike ravaged southeast Texas early Saturday, battering the coast with driving rain and ferocious wind gusts as residents who decided too late they should have heeded calls to evacuate made futile calls for rescue.

Though it would be daybreak before the storm's toll was clear, already, the damage was extensive. Thousands of homes and government buildings had flooded, roads were washed out and several fires burned unabated as crews could not reach them. But the biggest fear was that tens of thousands of people had defied orders to flee and would need to be rescued from submerged homes and neighborhoods. the rest

Bishop Duncan to Skip HOB Meeting

September 12, 2008

Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh has written to every member of the House of Bishops informing them that he will not attend the special meeting of the House of Bishops in Salt Lake City next week.

“One of the previously announced reasons for your gathering is to consider a charge brought against me by five priests and 16 lay people,” Bishop Duncan wrote. “The proper forum to determine whether I have violated the constitution and canons would be a church trial, as I am a bishop of this church.” He added that by instead pursuing “the abandonment shortcut,” “even the specific protections of that course of action have been ruled not to apply.”

“Given that I have been judged guilty by the Title IV disciplinary committee (without even my knowledge, prior to their findings, that there had been charges brought against me), and given the determination of the Presiding Bishop and her chancellor to proceed in this direction…I cannot see a way to bring myself to be present at the coming meeting of the House,” Bishop Duncan continued. “In light of all that has happened so far, what kind of ‘hearing’ can I expect the leadership to accord me? The constitution and canons are more than plain ‘in their literal and grammatical sense’ and the public documents and charges together, with my response, have long been in your hands.” the rest

Bishop Venables: Canadian Primate’s Proposal a ‘Publicity Stunt’

September 12, 2008

Presiding Bishop Gregory Venables, primate of the Anglican Church of the Southern Cone, expressed dismay and suspicion after Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of Canada, went public with his request for Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams to convene a meeting to discuss cross-border incursions.

In an interview published Sept. 10 by the Anglican Journal of Canada, Archbishop Hiltz said he had requested that Archbishop Williams convene a meeting with Bishop Venables, himself, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, and Archbishop Mauricio de Andrade, primate of Brazil.

“I talked to Fred about this at Lambeth, but it never occurred to me that a private discussion would become public without us both agreeing first,” Bishop Venables told The Living Church. “It looks more like a publicity stunt than a serious desire for dialogue. the rest

Latest attack on Palin: She prays!

The War Against the Normal
By JAMES TARANTO
September 12, 2008

The first cut of Charlie Gibson's interview with Sarah Palin reveals someone embarrassingly unprepared. His name is Charlie Gibson. Here's the transcript:

Gibson: You said recently, in your old church, "Our national leaders are sending U.S. soldiers on a task that is from God." Are we fighting a holy war?

Palin: You know, I don't know if that was my exact quote.

Gibson: Exact words.

Palin: But the reference there is a repeat of Abraham Lincoln's words when he said--first, he suggested never presume to know what God's will is, and I would never presume to know God's will or to speak God's words.

But what Abraham Lincoln had said, and that's a repeat in my comments, was let us not pray that God is on our side in a war or any other time, but let us pray that we are on God's side.
Palin was right, as we noted Tuesday. Although she had spoken the words Gibson attributed to her, his rendition of the quote was a dowdification. He took the words out of context to make a prayer that "the task is from God" appear to be an assertion that it is. the rest image

Feminist Army Aims Its Cannons at Palin

Mad Libs: Palin Derangement Syndrome overwhelms the media

Charlie Gibson's Gaffe

First Things: A New Order of Religious Freedom

By Richard John Neuhaus
Friday, September 12, 2008

“Oh look, the sun is rising again.” Most of us manage to contain our surprise. As predictable as the rising of the sun is the emergence of religion in our political contests—and the feigned surprise of much of our political class. Or maybe the surprise is not feigned. For some it is a sustained puzzlement and frustration that history is not turning out the way it was supposed to have. In this view, someone like Gov. Sarah Palin—combining fervent Christian faith with political moxy and celebrity power—is an interloper from an earlier America that secularists had long since consigned to the past. But it keeps coming back.

To be sure, religion has also played a big part in Sen. Obama’s campaign. But that’s different. He had to do something about the perception of the Democrats as the anti-religious party. Anyway, he’s black, and it’s understood that blacks are given a pass when, among other things, it comes to religion and politics. Even the rantings of someone like the Rev. Jeremiah Wright must be “contextualized” within the narrative of victimhood. As the senator said before he disowned the Rev. Wright, he could no more disown the Rev. Wright than he could disown the black community. And it’s not as though anybody worries that the urbane former editor of the Harvard Law Review poses a threat to Thomas Jefferson’s “wall of separation” between church and state.

Any time is a good time, but this election is a particularly good time, to review some basics about the free exercise of religion in this American constitutional order the rest

Friday, September 12, 2008

Devotional: It is folly to conclude...

It is folly to conclude that a thing ought not to be done because it hurts. There are powers to be born, creations to be perfected, sinners to be redeemed all through the ministry of pain, that could be born, perfected and redeemed in no other way. ...George Macdonald image

Future of Anglican Communion Resides with Global South Bishops and Christian Orthodoxy: GAFCON

Friday September 12, 2008
By Hilary White

LONDON, September 12, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - There is no turning back from "Anglican Realignment" and the future of the Anglican Church lies with Christian orthodoxy, say leaders of the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON), the group that formed in response to the growing pro-homosexualist dissent in the Anglican Communion. GAFCON has issued a statement following a meeting in London where they examined the results of this summer's Lambeth Conference.

The GAFCON leadership have made it clear that the breakup of the Anglican Communion happened in 2003 with the consecration of Gene Robinson, an unrepentant active homosexual man, as bishop of New Hampshire. There is now only one way forward, they said: the return of the Anglican Church to orthodox Christianity.

The statement from the GAFCON leadership outlined three "new facts", made clear at the Lambeth Conference, that no new agreements are likely to resolve. the rest

All Saints, Rochester: Church spat might head to Supreme Court

By Linda Quinlan, staff writer
Irondequoit Post
Fri Sep 12, 2008

In a property dispute stemming from a rift with the Episcopal Church of America, the attorney for All Saints Anglican Church urged New York’s Court of Appeals Tuesday to set aside a previous decision from a lower court that essentially allowed the removal of the congregation from its longtime church building at 759 Winona Blvd. in Irondequoit.

It’s a case that might not be settled until it gets to the U.S. Supreme Court.

During court proceedings Tuesday, parish attorney Eugene Van Voorhis argued that secular state law — and not ecclesiastical canon — should govern the transfer of property in New York.

“All of the funds that bought the church, built the church, bought the land — all was donated by parishioners,” Van Voorhis said in court. “This has to do with legal principles ... It has nothing to do with doctrinal disputes.” the rest

Bishop Martyn Minns: A Future for Traditional Values within the Anglican Communion

September 12, 2008

At this juncture in our nation's history, it is vitally important that we separate the values that are worth fighting for from those that are simply matters of cultural preference. There are values that are universal and non-negotiable. I find them in the Bible and they have shaped my life.

It is in the Bible where you will discover the truth that every human life is of inestimable worth. You will find that God created marriage - one man and one woman for life. This is not some social arrangement that we can redesign at will; it is part of God's design for humanity.

However, for about the past forty years I belonged to a church that no longer advocates these values. In fact, it is attempting to deliberately replace our core values with some of the latest cultural whims. the rest

Hurrican Ike: Prayer Needed!

Call upon me in the day of trouble;
I will deliver you, and you will honor me.
Psalm 50:15 image

You rule the raging of the sea;
when its waves rise, you still them.
Psalm 89:9

Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble,
and he delivered them from their distress.
He made the storm be still,
and the waves of the sea were hushed.
Psalm 27: 28-29

IR Satellite animation
image

Has the Church become too feminine?

Jonathan Wynne-Jones
Friday, September 12, 2008

Women are deserting the Church in their thousands and turning to the pagan religion of Wicca.Flowing skirts and garlands hold more attraction than a mitreTired of waiting to wear a mitre, they are putting on pointy hats instead - or dressing in garlands and flowing skirts at any rate.

This, generally speaking, was how the newspapers sold the conclusions of a study by Dr Kristin Aune - a Derby sociologist - into churchgoing habits.

It claimed that the Church faces a crisis in maintaining female worshippers who have become disillusioned because of its traditionalism and hierarchies.

Wicca, on the other hand, offers them real empowerment apparently as they can aspire to the lofty position of High Priestess.

They can even establish their own coven if they so wish.

Now there's power. Who cares about sitting in the House of Lords when you could be overseeing witches developing new spells?

Maybe the Episcopal Church was ahead of the game when it posted a "pagan" rite - called A celebration of the Divine Feminine - on its web site a few years ago. the rest

Akinola criticises West for cultural laxity and timidity

by Pat Ashworth
12 September, 2008

ENGLAND has let Christ go, says the Archbishop of Nigeria, the Most Revd Peter Akinola. Consequently, the “huge religious vacuum” created in the name of multiculturalism is being filled by Islam.

In an interview with Third Way, the Archbishop says he now leads 20 million Anglicans — “not on paper: in the pews on Sundays”. He describes himself to Joel Edwards, director of the Evan­gelical Alliance, as a nobody; some­one with no claim to glamour or “superstar syndrome”; a “tool in the hand of God”, with no choice but to be humble.

As a family man, he says that none of his six children, aged between 25 and 38, have ever given him a sleepless night. While he acknow­ledges that in his younger years as a Canon he could be “a little bit aggressive”, he says that his new status as Baba, spiritual father to the country, gives him no choice but to be “more tender, more pastoral, more caring”. It is a self-portrayal different from his defiant appearance in a BBC documentary, Battle of the Bishops, screened in July and featur­ing his preparation for, and presence at, GAFCON. the rest
(Thinking Anglicans)

Interview With Archbishop Akinola

Albert Mohler on California Episcopal Bishops' support of same sex marriage

"Not to Destruction, but to Salvation"

Friday, September 12, 2008

Excerpt:
In the majestic language of the 1928 Book of Common Prayer, a prayer offered at the consecration of a bishop includes these words: "Mercifully behold this thy servant, now called to the Work and Ministry of a Bishop; and so adorn him with innocency of life, that, both by word and deed, he may faithfully serve thee in this Office, to the glory of thy Name, and the edifying and well-governing of thy Church; through the merits of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Holy Spirit, world without end. Amen."

Later, a prayer calls upon the Lord to grant the bishop grace to "use the authority given him, not to destruction, but to salvation; not to hurt, but to help: so that, as a wise and faithful servant, giving to thy family their portion in due season, he may at last be received into everlasting joy."

Those beautiful words, "not to destruction, but to salvation," take on a deadly significance in the case of these bishops. They are leading their own church to destruction, and encouraging in the larger society what the Bible condemns as sin. These are shepherds who are leading their own flocks right off a cliff. Full Essay image

Peggy Noonan: Miles To Go

September 12, 2008

Excerpt:
After the past 10 days, it is not remarkable that Mr. McCain has caught up with Mr. Obama. It is amazing that Mr. Obama is still roughly even with Mr. McCain.

There is no denying that Mr. Obama is in a bad place, that he must now be considered the underdog, that he's wearing Loser-Glo. The slide started with the Rick Warren interviews in August, just as America was starting to pay attention. Verdict? McCain: normal. Obama: odd.

Then Mrs. Palin, and the catastrophe of the Democratic and media response to her. Books will be written about this, but because it's so recent, and so known, we're almost not absorbing how huge it was, and is. Here was the central liberal mistake: They used the atom bomb just a few days in. They used it so brutally, and yet so ineptly, in a way so oblivious to the true contours of the field, that the radiation blew back over their own lines. They used it without preliminary diplomatic talks, multilateral meetings or Security Council debate. They just went boom. And it boomeranged. the rest image

Stupid or Malicious? The Washington Post distorts Palin on page one.

Pope Addresses Secularism in France

Pope Addresses Secularism in France
By RACHEL DONADIO and ALAN COWELL
September 12, 2008

PARIS — On his first visit to France as pontiff, Pope Benedict XVI arrived here Friday , urging a “new reflection on the true meaning of and importance of secularism” within the historically fractious relationship between church and state in France.

His message spoke to a deep vein of anti-clericalism in France, which has long drawn sharp distinctions between issues of faith and matters of temporal power.

“At this moment in history, when cultures continue to cross paths more frequently, I am firmly convinced that a new reflection on the true meaning and importance of secularism is now necessary,” the pope said. He used the term in French “laïcité” which denotes the separation of church and state. the rest

India Set to Lose Voice of America

After 53 Years, Radio Service Will End
By Rama Lakshmi
Washington Post Foreign Service
Friday, September 12, 2008

NEW DELHI -- At the height of the Cold War, as India leaned resolutely toward the Soviet Union, one direct line of communication remained open from Washington to India's teeming millions: Voice of America, the U.S. government's radio network.

Rangisah Prasad, 70, recalls the days when there was just one radio set in his village, and Voice of America's Hindi-language broadcasts provided an escape from the dull drone of India's state-controlled radio news.

The Cold War is over, but Prasad's devotion to VOA lives on. "I have been hearing this station for 40 years now. Their tone was always friendly and informal. People gathered around the radio in the village square and listened to Voice of America," Prasad said in a telephone interview from Dumarsan village in the Indian state of Bihar. "We understood the world through their programs." the rest image

Thursday, September 11, 2008

ENS: Presiding Bishop removes MacBurney's inhibition after retired bishop apologizes

By Mary Frances Schjonberg
September 10, 2008

[Episcopal News Service] Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has removed the inhibition she placed in April on retired Episcopal Diocese of Quincy Bishop Edward MacBurney.

In a September 9 order, Jefferts Schori said that MacBurney had voluntarily submitted to discipline (Canon IV.2(9) and (10)) over a presentment which the Title IV Review Committee issued on Jan. 24, 2008.

Diocese of San Diego Bishop Jim Mathes, who originally asked for MacBurney to be disciplined because he conducted unauthorized confirmations in San Diego, told ENS September 10 that the order and discipline of the church had been "maintained and in some way enhanced by this process."

"Bishop MacBurney's decision is the result of my efforts and those of others to find a non-judicial outcome to an unfortunate event," Mathes said September 10 in his weekly email to diocesan clergy. "Today, the order of our church and the collegiality of the House of Bishops have been enhanced." the rest

Canada: Letter from Trustees of 4 Vancouver Churches

Anglican Mainstream
September 10, 2008

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

We greet you in the name of the risen Christ, the first and the last and the living one.

On July 10, 2008, the bishop of the Diocese of New Westminster invoked Diocesan Canon 15 against the Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC) parishes of St. Matthew’s Abbotsford (SMA) and St. Matthias and St. Luke’s in Vancouver (SMSL), effective August 25, 2008. Notice of this action was only served on the parishes on August 26, 2008. The bishop has purported to dismiss all the Wardens, Trustees and Parish Council members of both parishes and has ordered the Clergy to leave the buildings by mid-September. Earlier letters from the diocese demanding the clergy leave the church buildings, suggested that Parishioners who support their clergy should leave with them. The bank accounts of both parishes have been frozen and cheques for staff salaries and payments to missions (among other expenses) cannot be cashed.

While we dispute the validity of the Canon 15 notice, the bishop took these steps in order to gain control of the church buildings and take over the assets of the parish. In a memo to New Westminster clergy dated August 26, the Rev. Peter Elliott, Commissary for the bishop, indicated that they had taken steps against only two parishes “at this time”. We know that the two remaining ANiC parishes in Vancouver – Good Shepherd and St. John’s (Shaughnessy) – will be next. In fact, St. John’s has already received a letter demanding the clergy leave the premises, although no date was given. Good Shepherd is not currently in their church building, so a similar demand letter has not been received. However, the congregation has taken the same vote to join ANiC and their rector, Rev. Stephen Leung, has relinquished his licence for ministry in the Anglican Church of Canada along with the clergy of the other three parishes. the rest

Trustees of:
Church of the Good Shepherd
St. John’s Shaughnessy
St. Mathias and St. Luke
St. Matthew’s Abbotsford

Somber ceremonies mark 9/11 anniversary


Pentagon's September 11th memorial

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The somber music and voices of the United States Air Force Band at the Pentagon signaled the beginning of solemn memorial services Thursday to honor the victims of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Seven years ago, al Qaeda terrorists used hijacked airplanes to attack the World Trade Center and the Pentagon -- the twin symbols of America's financial and military might. Another hijacked plane crashed in Pennsylvania.

At the Pentagon, the ceremony dedicated a memorial to the 184 victims killed when American Airlines Flight 77 struck the Pentagon's west wall.

A bagpiper walked alone across the Pentagon memorial playing "Amazing Grace." the rest

In pictures: Remembering 9/11

Welsh bishops to reflect on Lambeth

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Bishops of the Church in Wales will present their response to the Lambeth Conference to members of the Governing Body of the Church in Wales at the University of Wales, Lampeter, next week.

All the Welsh Bishops attended the once-a-decade event for the leaders of the worldwide Anglican church which was held this summer at the University of Kent in Canterbury. They will talk to the Governing Body about their experiences and impressions of the conference and what they felt it achieved. the rest

Canadian Anglican primate seeks faceoff with rival leader

Breakaway faction has switched allegiance to S. American bishop
Sep 11, 2008

The head of the Anglican Church of Canada wants a face-to-face meeting with his South American counterpart, who earlier this year claimed jurisdiction over 10 Canadian congregations in a growing split over same-sex marriage blessings.

"What I would hope is that we could hear one another," Fred Hiltz, primate of the Canadian church, told the Anglican Journal.

"What would I say in that meeting?" Hiltz said. "Let me try and hear why it is you feel you need to continue to work to intervene in the life of the Anglican Church of Canada."

Archbishop Gregory Venables of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, however, says he would find it "difficult" to attend such a meeting. the rest

Pro-Abortion Leaders Consider McCain and Palin So Extreme, Words Fail Them

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
September 10, 2008

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- The head honchos at NARAL believe John McCain and Sarah Palin are so extreme on abortion, because they oppose it, that they can't come up with the right words to bash the candidates. As a result, NARAL has sponsored a new contest for its pro-abortion members to design a new slogan.

The idea is for the abortion advocates to come up with the catchiest way of slamming McCain and Palin for wanting to protect women and unborn children. the rest

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Lord gets his best soldiers....

The Lord gets his best soldiers out of the highlands of affliction. ...CH Spurgeon image

Homosexual U.K. Documentarian Says Gay Lifestyle a "Sewer" of Casual Degrading Sex, Drug Abuse and Misery

Wednesday September 10, 2008
By Hilary White

LONDON, September 10, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A British homosexual journalist admits that his documentary on the London gay scene is likely to "burn every bridge in the gay world I've got."

Simon Fanshawe is a writer and broadcaster who created the documentary "The Trouble With Gay Men" after becoming increasingly alarmed at the shallowness and destructiveness of the "gay lifestyle." The film, made for BBC 3 television, questions the emotional and psychological immaturity, narcissism, nihilism and self-destructive tendencies of many in the homosexual community. Fanshawe says he wants homosexual men to "grow up" and get beyond their state of "extended adolescence."

Fanshawe, who was involved in the early homosexualist political movement, says, "We've fought discrimination and prejudice, only to wreck ourselves with drugs and wild sex." the rest

Report from the Ft. Worth Bishop and Standing Committee

Posted September 10, 2008

A resolution adopted by the 25th Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth requested “that the Bishop and Standing Committee prepare a report for this diocese on the constitutional and canonical implications and means” of becoming a member diocese of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone. Two preliminary reports* have been made – one on January 9, 2008, and another on February 12, 2008 – and both should be reviewed at this time, for they are an integral part of the recommendation we are making to the 26th Annual Diocesan Convention.

After months of prayerful discernment and extensive consultation with others, both within our own diocese and beyond, we have come to the following conclusion. We recommend that this Diocese affiliate with the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone as a member diocese, on a temporary, pastoral basis, until such time as an orthodox Province of the Anglican Communion can be established in North America. the rest at TitusOneNine

The Importance of Trig Being

Wednesday, September 10, 2008
by Michael Gerson

WASHINGTON -- In addition to Barack Obama making history as the first African-American to be nominated for president and Sarah Palin taking her shotgun to the glass ceiling, there was a third civil rights barrier broken at the political conventions this year.

Trig Paxson Van Palin -- pronounced by his mother "beautiful" and "perfect" and applauded at center stage of the Republican convention -- smashed the chromosomal barrier. And it was all the more moving for the innocence and indifference of this 4-month-old civil rights leader.

It was not always this way. When John F. Kennedy's younger sister Rosemary was born mentally disabled in 1918, it was treated as a family secret. For decades Rosemary was hidden as a "childhood victim of spinal meningitis." Joseph Kennedy subjected his daughter to a destructive lobotomy at age 23. It was the remarkable Eunice Kennedy Shriver who talked openly of her sister's condition in 1962 and went on to found the Special Olympics as a summer camp in her backyard -- part of a great social movement of compassion and inclusion. the rest

Scientists Activate Particle Collider

By DENNIS OVERBYE
September 10, 2008

BATAVIA, ILL. — Science rode a beam of subatomic particles and a river of champagne into the future on Wednesday.

After 14 years of labor, scientists at the CERN laboratory outside Geneva successfully activated the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest, most powerful particle collider and, at $8 billion, the most expensive scientific experiment to date.

At 4:28 a.m., Eastern time, scientists sent the beam of protons around the collider’s 17-mile-long racetrack, 300 feet underneath the Swiss-French border, and then sent another beam through again.

“It’s a fantastic moment,” said Lyn Evans, who has been the project director of the collider since its inception. “We can now look forward to a new era of understanding about the origins and evolution of the universe.” the rest

Canadian bishops to ponder implications of 'next steps' after Lambeth

Marites N. Sison
staff writer
Sep 10, 2008

The Canadian house of bishops will discuss next month how best to respond to renewed proposals for a moratoria on the blessing of same-sex unions, the ordination of openly gay persons to the episcopate, and cross-border interventions.

In a related development, Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, said he has requested Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams to facilitate a meeting between him, the primate of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, Gregory Venables, U.S. presiding bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, and the primate of Brazil, Mauricio de Andrade, to discuss cross-border interventions. the rest

Small church sees big results from prayer

Sep 9, 2008
by Erin Roach

NIXON, Texas (BP)--A small church pastor in Texas is encouraging other small churches not to limit God after his congregation committed themselves to prayer and then saw God bring substantial results.

"I believe that there is a mindset now that if I'm not a mega-church pastor, I don't count," Kenny Rawls, pastor of First Baptist Church in Nixon, Texas, told Baptist Press. "I want the nation to understand that the majority of churches that are Southern Baptist are smaller-population churches."

God has planted that church there for a reason, and every pastor who carries the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a mega-church pastor," he said. "I want the smaller churches to realize they can reach people and make a difference to the Kingdom of God." the rest image

Albert Mohler:Alert the Media -- A Pastor Believes in Hell

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Excerpt:
But what makes Lisa Miller's article most interesting has nothing directly to do with abortion, marriage, or any social issue. The most interesting (and revealing) part of her article is a sentence that does not refer to her campaign, nor to her role as Governor, but to her church:

The senior pastor of that church, in sermons that circulated online before they were taken down last week, preaches hell for anyone who isn't saved by Jesus.

In the event a reader might miss that sentence, the magazine put the words, "The senior pastor of Palin's church preaches hellfire for anyone who isn't saved by Jesus" in large type in both print and electronic editions. In other words, these words are intended to catch a reader's eye as newsworthy -- an attention grabber.

Miller went on to explain that the fact that her pastor preaches such a message "puts her squarely in the tradition of the old-school religious right." the rest image

Episcopal Bishops in California Support Homosexual 'Marriage'

The California Episcopal Church's unified effort to hoist the banner of homosexual "rights" marks the further dissolution of the worldwide Anglican Communion.
By Kathleen Gilbert
9/10/2008
LifeSiteNews

SACRAMENTO, CA (LifeSiteNews) - The Episcopal Church in California is taking up arms against Proposition 8, an amendment that would change the California constitution to preserve the integrity of marriage as being between one man and one woman. In the process the U.S. branch of the Anglican Communion is clashing with a huge interfaith coalition, including Christians, Jews, Muslims, Mormons, Hindus and Sikhs, which is simultaneously launching a campaign to promote the proposition.

Voters will have an opportunity on the 2008 California General Election ballot in November to support Proposition 8, which will reinforce the wishes of 61% of California voters who supported true marriage in 2000. The California State Supreme Court overturned the popular vote earlier this year by legalizing same-sex "marriage," outraging Californians who complained that a handful of activist judges managed to hijack the democratic process. the rest

Kirk of the Hills Presbyterian loses court fight for its property

By BILL SHERMAN World Religion Writer
9/10/2008

The congregation of Kirk of the Hills Presbyterian lost a two-year fight Tuesday to keep its church property at 4102 E. 61st St.

In a case that has national interest, Tulsa District Judge Jefferson Sellers ruled that the church property belongs to the Presbyterian Church USA and its Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery, not to the local congregation.

Two years ago, by an overwhelming vote of the congregation, Kirk of the Hills became the largest church to leave the Presbyterian Church USA over concerns that the denomination was drifting from its biblical foundation. Dozens of similar cases exist nationwide.

At that time, the congregation asked the court to affirm its ownership of the multimillion-dollar building, and has continued to meet there.

Kirk of the Hills attorney John O'Connor said the decision will be appealed. the rest

Irondequoit church, Episcopal diocese clash in state court over property

Jay Gallagher • Albany Bureau Chief
September 10, 2008

ALBANY — Lawyers for an Anglican church in Irondequoit and for the Episcopal diocese of Rochester differed before the state's highest court Tuesday on whether an agreement made between the two parties carries the force of law in New York.

Nineteen years ago, All Saints Church signed a document that placed all of its property in trust for the diocese and the national church. The church has since separated from the national church because it disagreed with the ordination of a gay bishop.

Eugene VanVoorhis, a lawyer for All Saints, said the church doesn't want to turn its property over to the diocese. "Ecclesiastical documents are not property documents," he said in an argument before the state Court of Appeals.

But the lawyer for the diocese, Thomas Smith, pointed to a 1979 document signed by the church that said all of its property was held in trust for the diocese and the national church. the rest

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Devotional: Fear of God is a quiet grace...

Fear of God is a quiet grace which leads a man along a choice road, of which it is written, "No lion shall be there, neither shall any ravenous beast go up thereon." Fear of the very appearance of evil is a purifying principle, which enables a man, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to keep his garments unspotted from the world. Solomon had tried both worldliness and holy fear: in the one he found vanity, in the other happiness. Let us not repeat his trial but abide by his verdict. ...CH Spurgeon image

ADF appeals decision to uphold NY governor’s same-sex ‘marriage’ directive

Gov. Paterson’s mandate orders state agencies to honor out-of-state same-sex ‘marriages’ in violation of state law
Tuesday, September 09, 2008

NEW YORK — Attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund submitted their notice of appeal Monday contesting a New York judge’s decision to uphold an illegal directive from Gov. David Paterson. The directive orders state agencies to recognize same-sex “marriages” from outside jurisdictions even though same-sex “marriage” is not legal under New York law.

“New York’s marriage laws should be respected over the laws of foreign jurisdictions,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Brian Raum. “This is not about discrimination. This is about the future of marriage being decided by the legislature and the people, not by executives having no authority to issue directives that conflict with New York’s public policy. The governor is not above the law.” the rest

Diocese of Pittsburgh: Statement on the Sept. 8 Court Hearing

Bishop Robert Duncan has released a statement on the results of a hearing before Judge James that took place on September 8.

The statement follows:

"On Sept. 8, there was a hearing before Judge James in the Calvary litigation. Calvary took the position that the Realignment vote will violate the 2005 Stipulation and that Calvary was entitled to the appointment of a "monitor" to take over the financial affairs of the Diocese. Calvary first initiated this request in a July 2008 filing. Since July, we have documented with the Court the Diocese's strong opposition to Calvary's position, and the fact that Diocese has consistently complied with the Stipulation since it was signed, and will continue to comply with the Stipulation after the Realignment vote. The Diocese always has been, and remains committed to administering Diocesan assets for the beneficial use of all parishes and institutions of the Diocese, regardless of any parish's position on Realignment. the rest

Stand Firm/Comments

Hawking bets CERN mega-machine won't find 'God's Particle'

Sep 9, 2008

Renowned British astrophysicist Stephen Hawking has bet 100 dollars (70 euros) that a mega-experiment this week will not find an elusive particle seen as a holy grail of cosmic science, he said Tuesday.

In the most complex scientific experiment ever undertaken, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will be switched on Wednesday, accelerating sub-atomic particles to nearly the speed of light before smashing them together.

"The LHC will increase the energy at which we can study particle interactions by a factor of four. According to present thinking, this should be enough to discover the Higgs particle," Hawking told BBC radio. the rest image

Newsweek: What Will the Collider Tell Us?

Don't panic: Large Hadron Collider won't spawn voracious black holes

LHC to switch on early tomorrow amid death threats

Stephen Hawking: Large Hadron Collider vital for humanity

Lambeth cease-fire ‘collapses’

Tuesday, 9th September 2008
By George Conger

The Lambeth ceasefire has collapsed in Canada after the Diocese of New Westminster moved to reassert “control” over two conservative congregations who had broken with Bishop Michael Ingham to join the Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC).

On Aug 26 the Dean and Chancellor of New Westminster, acting on behalf of the vacationing Bishop Ingham, invoked the Canadian Church’s Canon 15 and sought to dismiss the wardens and parochial trustees of two parishes: St Matthew’s Abbotsford and St Matthias & St Luke in Vancouver, replacing them with nominees loyal to the diocese.

The diocese had taken these steps “to remove clergy who have left the Anglican Church of Canada rather than accepting the decisions of its local and national governing bodies,” a press statement said. the rest

All Saints Rochester: NY court hears dispute over church ownership

September 9, 2008

ALBANY, N.Y. - New York's top court is set to hear arguments over whether the Episcopal Diocese of Rochester owns the property of the former All Saints Episcopal Church, which quit supporting the diocese and the Episcopal Church of the USA after the 2003 ordination of a gay bishop in New Hampshire.

In November 2005, a majority of delegates at a Rochester diocesan convention voted to end their relationship with All Saints in suburban Irondequoit. The diocese has since sold the building to another denomination. The All Saints congregation has been meeting at a Lutheran church in Rochester.

Arguments were scheduled Tuesday at the Court of Appeals. Trial and midlevel appeals courts sided with the diocese, concluding it was entitled to the property under rules adopted by the National Church in 1979. story

Denver Bishops Say Biden Is Wrong, Too

Respond to "Flawed Moral Reasoning"
DENVER, Colorado

SEPT. 8, 2008 (Zenit.org).- NBC's "Meet the Press" has inadvertently become the stage for some Catholic politicians to display "flawed moral reasoning," according to the bishops of Denver.

In the second statement in two weeks responding to comments made by Catholic politicians on the Sunday morning program, Archbishop Charles Chaput and Auxiliary Bishop James Conley of Denver are telling politicians "who describe themselves as Catholic," to begin to "act accordingly."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared first on the program in late August. When asked to comment on when life begins, she said that as a Catholic she had studied the issue for "a long time" and that "the doctors of the Church have not been able to make that definition."

Senator Joseph Biden, Senator Barack Obama's running mate on the Democratic presidential ticket, appeared on the same program last Sunday. The senator "compounded the problem" with his explanation of when life begins, according to the bishops. the rest

Is Trig at the Heart of Media's Reaction to Palin?

by Mona Charen
Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Excerpt:
Sarah Palin is no ordinary pro-lifer. She is an attractive, intelligent, ambitious, successful woman who has actually lived her convictions. Told that the baby she was carrying would be handicapped with Down syndrome, she and her husband made the only decision their consciences would permit -- to welcome this child with the same love they would give to any other. That decision is comparatively rare in America. Fully 80 percent of parents who receive a diagnosis of Down syndrome in their unborn children elect to abort. But it's not unusual at all among committed pro-lifers. I have met many in the course of speaking to pro-life audiences. And for every couple that has chosen life for a handicapped child, there are thousands and perhaps millions more who have abjured prenatal testing because under no circumstances would they abort their children. I cannot count the times I've amazed pro-choice people with the news that there are even waiting lists of couples who stand ready to adopt Down syndrome babies. the rest image

Zogby poll: The Trig Palin effect

Pro-Abortion Groups Renew $30 Million Campaign Against McCain, Sarah Palin

Vatican Official: Palin 'Dream' for Pro-Lifers

Cindy McCain: The Real Community Organizer

09/09/2008

Barack Obama has spent two years telling America that his wife works for the community of south-side Chicago, making Americans think Mrs. Obama devotes her life to charity work. The opposite is true: Mrs. Obama sits on the board of University of Chicago Medical Center and is paid her for her work. It’s been reported that a patient can only be treated at the hospital he or she has insurance, yet Michelle Obama claims she fights for those in need. Cindy McCain saves lives without receiving one dime; she has literally gotten down in the trenches with people less fortunate, never seeking praise or money.

The only thing Americans hear about Cindy McCain is she is the chairperson of her father’s Anhauser-Bush beer distributorship, Hensley & Company, and her personal net worth is $100 million dollars. Many do not realize Mrs. McCain’s father borrowed the money to start his business in 1955; one year after his daughter was born. Cindy McCain was not born to wealth. The media and press never tell her real accomplishments of service to those in need around the world.
the rest image

Episcopal Diocese prepares for secession vote

Tuesday, September 09, 2008
By Ann Rodgers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In response to a lawsuit led by one of its parishes, the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh has agreed to have a court-appointed neutral party inventory all of its property and assets as it prepares for a final vote on seceding from the Episcopal Church.

The agreement between representatives of the diocese and Calvary Episcopal Church, Shadyside, came after a hearing yesterday before Joseph M. James, president judge of Common Pleas Court. In 2005, he oversaw a settlement after Calvary sued the diocese to prevent the transfer of property from the denomination to individual parishes.
the rest

Stand Firm: Details on TEC Loyalist, 815 Plans to Depose +Iker, Take Property

Monday, September 8, 2008

There's a group of TEC loyalists in the diocese of Fort Worth calling themselves the "Steering Committee" or some such; we recently posted an excerpt from one of their Yahoo! Groups discussion here.

Now we're inside their OODA loop with this report from their meeting on September 6th, and if you're an orthodox Anglican in Fort Worth I strongly recommend you first save this post, in digital and/or print form (use the "Print-friendly" link below if you wish), then take 20 minutes and read Bill Whittle's excellent essay on what OODA is and how to use it to your advantage, then as soon as you're able, get together with your most trusted allies in your parish and devise your own plans to neutralize the ones this "steering committee" is trying to put in place. To paraphrase Whittle: Own the initiative, and never give it back.
the rest

Dio. Fort Worth: A response to the Steadfast Episcopalian Mailer

A response to the Steadfast Episcopalian Mailer
Dean Ryan Reed, St. Vincent’s Cathedral
September 5, 2008

I received a very nice letter in the mail today from Steadfast Episcopalians. There is much to commend about the two-page letter sent out to what I assume is various members of the Diocese of Fort Worth. The charitable tone and the desire to seek unity in commonality are both helpful. The seven theological points are helpful in beginning discussions about unity for all Christians.

I guess what concerns me is that the brief nature of the letter really masks the seriousness of the problems facing the Episcopal Church. I believe one weakness of the letter is that it transfers the orthodoxy and unity of the Diocese of Fort Worth onto The Episcopal Church (TEC) which is far from orthodox and far from united. Here are several of my concerns:

1. "Fostering respect for differences that have always been a hallmark of the Episcopal Church" was true when the differences fell within the boundaries of Christian faith and practice. In recent times, what it means to be an Episcopalian can fall far outside the basic boundaries of what it means to be a Christian. Our differences between high-church and low-church or broad church and charismatic are not in the same category as the differences we face today. the rest-pdf

Monday, September 08, 2008

Devotional: We must meet our hurts...

We must meet our hurts, our disappointments, our frustrations, the malice of our enemies, the provoking habits of our friends-our trials and temptations of every sort-with an attitude of active and practical surrender and trust. Only then will we be able to spread our wings and fly above them all to the "heavenly places in Christ." From that vantage point we will be able to see our problems through the eyes of Jesus, and they will lose their power to harm or distress us. ...Catherine Jackson image

Is the Episcopal Church Hierarchical?

By Mark McCall
September 2008

The question posed in the title of this paper may seem at first glance to be a variant of the perennial rhetorical tautology “Is the Pope Catholic?” As will be shown below, the answer to this second question is definitely “yes,” but the answer to the first is much less obvious and ultimately will be “yes, but,” at least at the national level. TEC is hierarchical, but the hierarchy is not what you think. It is often said that TEC’s polity is unique, democratic and misunderstood. Whether it is democratic is debatable, but it is certainly unique and unquestionably misunderstood, not least by many in TEC itself.

Paper here-pdf

The Demise of the "Sisterhood of Single-Issue Feminists"

09/08/2008

If you listened very carefully to Alaska Governor Sarah Palin’s dynamic speech to the Republican Convention last Wednesday night, you could plainly hear the death cry of single-issue feminism. The nomination of Governor Palin, a pro-life feminist, for Vice President of the United States has put the final nail in the coffin of an increasingly discredited and narrow-minded worldview that believes that women cannot thrive in a world without unrestricted abortion-on-demand. Equally importantly, her historic candidacy promises to transform the tone and complexion of American feminism.

But organizations that predicate their influence and even their very existence upon the precepts of single issue feminism will certainly not go quietly as their public statements since the nomination aptly demonstrate. One by one, the “usual suspects” lined up to denounce Governor Palin and her pro-life views.

In their single-issue fanaticism, these disingenuously self-described “women’s rights” organizations, cannot support a woman who appears to be living the modern feminist dream: meaningful and powerful career, happy marriage, and beautiful family. They cannot support a woman who has achieved astonishing success in the “good ole’ boy” world of Alaskan politics. They cannot support a woman who, at 42, was elected the first female governor of her state and enjoys a better than 80% job approval rating. the rest

Rev. John Yates: What We Are

September 8, 2008
The Falls Church, Falls Church VA

An Episcopal (TEC) bishop asked me what do I want, as I envision how the Church should be. Here are some thoughts about the qualities I believe would be true of the Anglican Church that I love.

We are Anglican in theological outlook:

  • Rooted in the English Reformation doctrines of the 39 Articles, the early prayer books, Cranmer’s homilies, and the confessions of our Anglican martyrs.
  • Our Triune God has spoken supremely in our Lord Jesus Christ and in holy Scripture.
  • Our trust in God is rooted in the atoning life, death and resurrection of Jesus, and we look to the Holy Spirit as our ongoing Counselor, Guide, Equipper, and Friend.
  • We accept the historic episcopate model of church governance expecting bishops to be shepherds and teachers, assuring continuity of the apostolic faith and discipline, their ministries being rooted in the local church.
  • We embrace our common heritage with the worldwide Anglican Communion, looking to this body as our primary, international family. the rest

Joe Biden: When Does Life Begin?



Albert Mohler: A Private Conviction About Murder?
Monday, September 08, 2008

Speaking Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press," Sen. Joe Biden, the Democratic nominee for Vice President, made headlines by stating that he accepts "as a matter of faith" that human life begins at conception, but he would not impose that view on others as a matter of law.

Sen. Biden's statement is similar in form to those offered by other Catholic politicians like former New York Governor Mario Cuomo. Nevertheless, what it really represents is far more horrifying than may be recognized at first.

Speaking on "Meet the Press," Biden responded to a question from Tom Brokaw. The anchor had asked Biden what he would say if Sen. Barack Obama asked him when human life begins [see video clip]
the rest

In Palin’s Life and Politics, Goal to Follow God’s Will

By KIRK JOHNSON and KIM SEVERSON
September 5, 2008

WASILLA, Alaska — Shortly after taking office as governor in 2006, Sarah Palin sent an e-mail message to Paul E. Riley, her former pastor in the Assembly of God Church, which her family began attending when she was a youth. She needed spiritual advice in how to do her new job, said Mr. Riley, who is 78 and retired from the church.

“She asked for a biblical example of people who were great leaders and what was the secret of their leadership,” Mr. Riley said.

He wrote back that she should read again from the Old Testament the story of Esther, a beauty queen who became a real one, gaining the king’s ear to avert the slaughter of the Jews and vanquish their enemies. When Esther is called to serve, God grants her a strength she never knew she had.

Mr. Riley said he thought Ms. Palin had lived out the advice as governor, and would now do so again as the Republican Party’s vice-presidential nominee. the rest

Hugh Hewitt: The Double Standard and The Great Divide
Excerpt:
The rolling collapse of the Obama campaign is at least in part owed to the wide-and-getting-wider recognition that the MSM's [mainstream media] Emperor has no clothes and that the MSM has been covering for him. The giant MSM snarl unleashed at the wildly popular Sarah Palin not only rallied millions to her side, it also exposed the virulent antipathy towards middle America on the part of many in the MSM and the agenda journalism of the rest. Bill Kristol writes today that Sarah Palin is a "Wal-Mart Mom." (HT: RobinsonandLong.com) The huge anger displayed towards her from Manhattan-Beltway media elites has been a great lesson for all Americans on the contempt in which "Wal-Mart Moms" are held by MSM and Democratic Party elites. This contempt won't be forgotten.

A Heartbeat Away

Americans Get to Know Once-Obscure Alaska Governor


Poll: Convention lifts McCain over Obama

Gallup Daily: McCain Moves Ahead, 48% to 45%

Volcanic Eruption Giving Earth Spectacular Sunsets

Thursday, September 04, 2008
By Andrea Thompson

Reports of unusually fiery orange sunsets on Earth and ruby red rings around the planet Venus have popped up on the Internet in the last week.

Some skywatchers suspect that these views are being colored by the dust and gases injected into the atmosphere by the Aug. 7 eruption of Alaska's Kasatochi volcano.

The skywatchers are probably right.

Kasatochi, part of the Aleutian Island chain, sent an ash plume more than 35,000 feet (10,600 meters) into the atmosphere when it erupted last month.

"This is a big ash-producing eruption," said Peter Cervelli, a research geophysicist with the United States Geological Survey at the Alaska Volcano Observatory. the rest

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Devotional: O Lord God who art all in all to me...

O Lord God who art all in all to me, Life of my life and Spirit of my spirit, have mercy on me and fill me with Thy Holy Spirit and with love that there may be no room for anything else in my heart. I ask not for any blessing, but for Thyself, who art the giver of all blessings and of all life. I ask not for the world and its pomp and glory, nor for heaven, but I need Thee Thyself, for where Thou art, there is heaven. In Thyself alone is satisfaction and abundance for my heart; Thou Thyself, O Creator, hast created this heart for Thyself, and not for any other created thing. Therefore this heart cannot find rest in aught but Thee: only in Thee, O Father, who hast made this longing for peace. So now take out of this heart whatever is opposed to Thee and abide and rule in it Thyself, Amen. ... Sadhu Sundar Singh image

Cardinal George Corrects the Catholic Vote Debate

Posted on September 06, 2008
Deal W. Hudson

The most important statement from a Catholic bishop of the present political season was published a few days ago by Francis Cardinal George of Chicago.

In essence, Cardinal George stated it was a violation of Catholic teaching to evoke the common good in politics without advocating legal protection of yet-to-be-born children.

Several "Catholic" political organizations (Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good and Catholics United) have come into existence since 2004 using the "common good" as their guiding principle.

Here is what Cardinal George says:

This teaching has consequences for those charged with caring for the common good, those who hold public office. The unborn child, who is alive and is a member of the human family, cannot defend himself or herself. Good law defends the defenseless. Our present laws permit unborn children to be privately killed. Laws that place unborn children outside the protection of law destroy both the children killed and the common good, which is the controlling principle of Catholic social teaching. One cannot favor the legal status quo on abortion and also be working for the common good. (emphasis added) the rest image

Cathedral 'plans wine bar chain'

Saturday, 6th September 2008
By Matt Cresswell

Birmingham Cathedral has revealed plans to launch a chain of cathedral-style wine bars in a bid to attract more worshippers.

The idea is part of a push to re-vitalise the image of the famous cathedral and to market it in the 21st century.

But traditionalist groups say it reeks of ‘desperation’ and will be ineffective in spreading the true Christian message.

The idea was the brainchild of Mark Hope-Urwin, a former executive of the department store chain John Lewis. His plans suggest a chain of cathedral wine bars throughout the city which would feature stained-glass windows and religious motifs. All bars would be kitted out in ‘episcopal purple’ and would support a loyalty card scheme. the rest

Sarah Barracuda

Palin should strike fear in the hearts of Democrats
Sunday, September 07, 2008
By Jack Kelly
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Excerpt:
Only once in modern times has a vice presidential candidate swung an election. Lyndon Johnson brought Texas and Alabama to John F. Kennedy in 1960, states that otherwise would have been suspicious of a Catholic liberal from New England. I think Sarah Palin will be the second. She has changed the nature of this race in ways ominous for Mr. Obama.

First, this race is no longer between a candidate who advocates change and the status quo, as Democrats would like to frame it. It's between two different visions of change, and between a ticket that's actually delivered reform, and a ticket that just talks about it. The argument that John McCain represents a third term for George W. Bush was strained to start with. It's ludicrous now.

Second, the Republican base is more fired up, and the party more united than it's been since Ronald Reagan ran for his second term. Conservatives see in Sarah Palin Ronald Reagan in a dress, the brains and backbone of Margaret Thatcher in a younger, prettier package. The Grand Old Party has a bright new face.

Mr. Obama owes much of his new troubles to his friends in the news media. Republicans -- and independent and Democratic women appalled by their sexism -- were enraged by the vicious assaults on Sarah Palin and her family.

After he learned his fleet had attacked Pearl Harbor before a formal declaration of war, Japanese Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto is reputed to have said: "I fear all we have done is awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve." the rest