Saturday, May 09, 2009

Devotional: The foundation of the Christian's peace is everlasting...

The foundation of the Christian's peace is everlasting; it is what no time, no change can destroy. It will remain when the body dies; it will remain when the mountains depart and the hills shall be removed, and when the heavens shall be rolled together as a scroll. The fountain of His comfort shall never be diminished, and the stream shall never be dried. His comfort and joy is a living spring in the soul, a well of water springing up to everlasting life. ...Jonathan Edwards image

ACC rejects proposed moratorium on litigation over property

Marites N. Sison
staff writer
May 8, 2009

Kingston, JamaicaThe 14th Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) by a tight vote on May 8 rejected a move to add a fourth moratorium on issues related to divisions over human sexuality that would have asked for a “cessation of litigation” among member churches of the Anglican Communion involved in disputes over property.

The ACC, however, said it “affirms” the recommendations of the Windsor Continuation Group (WCG), which included not just moratoria on the blessing of same-sex unions, the ordination of persons living in same-sex unions, and cross-provincial interventions, but also “relational consequences” for those who breach them. The original text of the resolution had used the word “notes,” instead of “affirms.” the rest

Apostacy and deception: Statement on ACC-14 from the Anglican Church League

May 9, 2009 Filed
Mark D. Thompson

Statement on the Anglican Consultative Council meeting in Jamaica, from the President of the Anglican Church League, Rev. Dr. Mark Thompson:

“We have once again been shown how firmly apostasy and deception is embedded in the international structures of Anglicanism. There is no hope for the future there.”

The reports from the 14th Anglican Consultative Council meeting being held in Jamaica make for depressing reading. ‘Assume incompetence rather than malevolence’, the old saying goes. That is becoming harder and harder to do, even for the optimists amongst us.

The intervention of the Archbishop of Canterbury at crucial points to serve the interests of TEC and its presiding bishop and to thwart the attempts to bring real accountability to bear on those who have abandoned the teaching of Scripture and are pursuing the property of faithful Anglicans through the courts, undermines any suggestion that he is providing genuine leadership at this crucial time. The activities of other officials from the Anglican Communion Office were even more openly serving the revisionist agenda. the rest

JAMAICA: Delegates Argue over Dropped Moratoria Litigation in Windsor Continuation Report

By David W. Virtue in Jamaica

US Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and the two other TEC delegates gave a spirited defense to have a fourth moratoria regarding litigation removed from a draft of the Windsor Continuation Group report. Sudanese Bishop Ezekiel Kondo of Khartoum blasted her saying she got her facts wrong in a case of the cathedral pulling out of the Diocese.

"It never happened. It was not the cathedral, but the bishop's house that was sold. We did not go to court. I support the amendment to include the fourth Moratoria," he said.

Bishop Azad Marshall of Iran got up and objected to Jefferts Schori's characterization of litigation in Jerusalem saying the church was never taken to court over property issues. "It was of a personal nature in Jerusalem, not civil litigation."

The Moratoria have not in all cases been observed completely. There are degrees (of compliance) for different moratoria, it was noted.President Bishop Mouneer Anis of Egypt said the fourth moratoria should be included because it was in the Dar es Salaam statement and because of all the litigation in The Episcopal Church between 2007 - 2009. the rest

Michael Nazir-Ali: Anglicans must 'look to Pope for unity'

May 09, 2009
Ruth Gledhill's blog

As the Covenant process seemed to sustain something of a blow in Jamaica I was enjoying a the kindly light of Oxford's Newman Society at the Catholic Chaplaincy, where Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester who recently announced he is to retire to work with persecuted Christians, was speaking about the future of the Anglican Communion.The bishop was interviewed before he spoke by Michael Webb. Read on for some of my notes on his speech (to be updated later when I've time after my weekly trip to the Royal Academy).

Bishop Michael spoke about the equal and opposite pulls in Anglicanism, towards the 'logic of Catholicism' or the 'logic of fragmentation'.

'The question now arises, which logic will prevail. It is quite possible that the logic of fragmentation will prevail and people will go their own way. Or it may be that the Anglicans will see their way to the Catholic Church, to God's will as expressed in Christ's highly prescient prayer for the unity of Christians across the ages and throughout the world. the rest

Dr. Stephen Noll: The Anglican Communion Covenant: Where Do We Go from Here?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Initial ReflectionsThanks to the marvels of global communications, I was able to follow the so-called deliberations, a.k.a., manipulations, of the final session of the Anglican Consultative Council in Jamaica. As part of the flood of commentary following this “historic” session in the afternoon of 8 May 2009, I offer here a few initial reflections. Here

ACC Bishops from Egypt, Peru and Nigeria reflect on the delay to the Covenant
May 9th, 2009
Five leaders of the Global South spoke to the press in the evening after the debate which delayed the process of sending the covenant to the provinces. This can be viewed on Anglican TV The following does not claim to be verbatim, but represents as best as possible from their presentations.

Thought police muscle up in Britain

Hal G. P. Colebatch
April 21, 2009
The Australian

BRITAIN appears to be evolving into the first modern soft totalitarian state. As a sometime teacher of political science and international law, I do not use the term totalitarian loosely.
There are no concentration camps or gulags but there are thought police with unprecedented powers to dictate ways of thinking and sniff out heresy, and there can be harsh punishments for dissent.

Nikolai Bukharin claimed one of the Bolshevik Revolution's principal tasks was "to alter people's actual psychology". Britain is not Bolshevik, but a campaign to alter people's psychology and create a new Homo britannicus is under way without even a fig leaf of disguise.

The Government is pushing ahead with legislation that will criminalise politically incorrect jokes, with a maximum punishment of up to seven years' prison. The House of Lords tried to insert a free-speech amendment, but Justice Secretary Jack Straw knocked it out. It was Straw who previously called for a redefinition of Englishness and suggested the "global baggage of empire" was linked to soccer violence by "racist and xenophobic white males". He claimed the English "propensity for violence" was used to subjugate Ireland, Scotland and Wales, and that the English as a race were "potentially very aggressive".

In the past 10 years I have collected reports of many instances of draconian punishments, including the arrest and criminal prosecution of children, for thought-crimes and offences against political correctness. the rest

Friday, May 08, 2009

Episcopal Church Would Welcome Embattled Priest

Father Alberto Cutié Was Caught On Camera Kissing And Hugging A Woman
May 8, 2009

MIAMI BEACH (CBS4) ― The spiritual leader and head of the Episcopal church in South Florida tells CBS4 he believes that popular Catholic priest Alberto Cutié will make a decision soon to become an Episcopal priest.

The Rt. Rev. Leo Frade, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Southeast Florida, told CBS4's Peter D'Oench he's spoken twice with Father Cutié at length since the provocative photos surfaced in TV NOTAS Magazine, showing Cutie kissing and caressing 35-year-old Ruhama Canellis on the beach.

"I think the issue for Father Cutie is one of celibacy," said Bishop Frade. Celibacy is required of Catholic priests. It is not required of Episcopal priests. the rest

Report from ACC-14 Day Seven: No Fourth Moratorium and No Covenant

Today’s report was written by the Rev. Philip Ashey, C.O.O and Chaplain, AAC.
May 8th 2009

What happened today with the Anglican Covenant and the Windsor Continuation Group(WCG) Report?

I have just spent all day observing ACC-14’s decisionmaking plenary sessions here in Kingston, Jamaica. I would like to offer several observations:

The failure to pass a "fourth moratorium" on litigation

As we reported two days ago, the Anglican Communion Office, speaking through Bishop Gregory Cameron, could not explain why the moritorium on litigtion, unanimously voiced by the Primates at the Dar es Salaam meeting, was not included among the Communion Moratoria in the WCG draft resolution. In fact, the WCG report to the Archbishop of Canterbury included the fourth moratorium in paragraph 4, and noted that the current failure to observe this moratorium was exacerbating the "interventions" in North America.

When a resolution to add this fourth moratorium was moved today, the Presiding Bishop of TEC rose to complain, among other things, that such a moratorium would enable congregations leaving TEC to "alienate their property."

As usual, nothing could be further from the truth. The key principles set out in the appendix to the Dar es Salaam Statement required both parties "to give assurances that no steps will be taken to alienate property from the Episcopal Church without its consent or to deny use of that property to those congregations." (WCG Report to the Archbishop of Canterbury at paragraph 34, footnote 11, page 7). It is exactly the kind of "standstill" begged for by +Rowan Williams in his presentation of the WCG Recommendations, where he called all parties to take a step back from what they are doing - that we owe it to the Lord of our Church to do so.

Dr Williams has read the report. He presented its recommendations to the ACC-14. He was present at DES and read that Statement too. Yet he allowed the misrepresentation of the Presiding Bishop to stand, without comment. the rest

Live blogging the Decision Making sessions of the ACC in Jamaica

Here at Stand Firm
(don't forget to refresh from time to time)

Praise unleashes spiritual warfare
God inhabits the praises of His people. In His presence, His enemies melt like hot wax. (Psalm 22:3, 68:2) Read Revelation 19:1-16.

And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

Come Faithful and True,
Come to judge and make war.
Come riding on a white horse.
Come to Kingston, to the Pegasus Hotel,
to the Anglican Consultative Council. Come.
Lent and Beyond

See Bishop Bena's letter below

Is Good News Still Good in Bad Times?

by Bishop Dave Bena
May 8, 2009

Did you ever notice that some days have kind of a deep sucking sound to them? Like water in a bathtub being sucked down to the sewer? Or maybe you go out into the parking lot and then remember that you forgot where you parked your car? Then after a half hour of searching (sun's out and the temp's about ninety-five), you find it only to notice a big dent in the door and NO NOTE from the friendly motorist who hit you? Yeah. You know what I'm talking about. THAT kind of a day. Now string a bunch of those days together. Yeah. That's what I'm talking about. Ever have that kind of a week? If so, how does the Good News of Jesus Christ feel now? Is it still good news? Or is it irrelevant to your situation? Let's talk.

Those of us on the orthodox side of the Anglican coin have been reading and watching the media disgorgings, and the church news is not good, not good at all. We read of bad goings-on in Jamaica, San Joaquin, Binghamton, and UP Michigan. And our stomachs turn at the ridiculous stuff happening. "Hello, Lord God? Where are you? Do you see what's happening? When will you send in the cavalry? Any time in the next five minutes will do... In Jesus' name. Amen." It's pretty easy to begin believing that the Good News of Jesus may not be all that Good in bad times.

In fact, that's probably how David felt as he shivered in the cave down at Engedi, hiding out and hoping upon hope that King Saul would not find him. He had every reason to be alarmed. King Saul, his father-in-law, was out to murder him. Saul had taken David's wife Michal and given her to someone else. He had forbidden his son Jonathan from communicating with David. Everybody knew Saul was insane. Everybody knew that one of David's jobs was to keep the king calm. But now when Saul was insane, there was no one to calm the king. Because the king-calmer was running from the insane-Saul.

Those days had a deep sucking sound for everybody in Israel, especially David. You might suppose that David would be angry, bitter, and fearful. But in fact, scholars believe that David wrote Psalm 23 during his time of hiding out. David was a man of many talents, one of which was that he was a song composer. He was probably skulking in a cave when he took stock of his feelings, gave them over to the Lord, and received comforting words - Psalm 23. "The Lord is my shepherd," David wrote. David knew about shepherding because he had been a shepherd. And he saw the Lord as HIS shepherd, a Shepherd who would lead him to safety, nourishment, and hope. He said, "I shall not want." How strange that David would say this...

Here was a man who had been married to the King's daughter, who could have had everything he desired, and now he was skulking in a cave with nothing. And he still said, "I shall not want?" I think he penned these words because God had gifted him with a spirit of contentment. Not only that, but David had confidence even in the valley of the shadow of death. Ever been there? When you think it is just not worth it to go on? Or when you fear that whatever route you take, it will be the wrong one? So you just get paralyzed in fear. David knew about that. But he also had hope. Why? "His rod and his staff, they comfort me." He so believed that God was shepherding him even when he could not see any good news, that he envisioned himself being rubbed down and cared for by the shepherd's staff. David was so confident in God, he even had a vision of sitting right beside his worst enemy, Saul, with his swinging sword, and enjoying a fabulous dinner... "He prepareth a table before me in the presence of mine enemy" - "Pass the salt, will you, Saul? Thanks. By the way, could you cut my steak with that swinging sword of yours? That's a good king. Appreciate it!"

David visualized the Shepherd anointing him with healing balm, healing his fears. David had such confidence while he skulked in the cave that he said, "My cup runneth over!" For all he knew, Saul the Insane might be within five feet of his cave. But David could feel that his cup "runneth over." And that, my friends, is a lot of runnething over. By this time in the Psalm, he was bubbling over with hope and joy, IN THE MIDST OF PERSECUTION AND FEARFUL CIRCUMSTANCES. So full of hope was he that he could end the Psalm by stating matter-of-factly that he expected to have goodness and mercy all his days upon the earth, and an eternity in God's house.

Now watch this. Just as God the Father was David's shepherd, so God the Son is ours! Jesus said, "I am the Good Shepherd. I know my sheep and my sheep know me." Jesus says to you and me, "I have spoken these words to you so that you might find peace in me. In the world you will have tribulation. But be of good cheer. I have overcome the world." Now that's what I call good shepherding.

And I need to remember that Psalm when my car has a dent in it, or when another church building is given to someone who ethically and morally shouldn't have it, or when a friend is kept from an important meeting simply because those with power have made up a rule to keep him out. How about this? Jesus took our sins to the cross that we might die to sin and live for Him. That's bedrock faith, and it is the reason we go to the cross for comfort. Bedrock faith - Jesus died for your sins. AND Jesus rose bodily from the dead to bring us to life everlasting. Bedrock faith - your resurrection life starts anew every day, and goes on forever, even after your peepers close for the last time on this earth. That is good news. And it's still good news even in bad times. That's good news even as we face persecution by those who want to stop us from building a beautiful Anglican Province in North America. Cut us down, and three more will pop up. The Good Shepherd is good - all the time!

Let's end by reciting the close of the Communion service in the Prayer Book of the Church of Kenya.
All our problems...We send to the cross of Christ.
All our difficulties...We send to the cross of Christ.
All the devil's works...We send to the cross of Christ
All our hopes...We set on the risen Christ.

That is good news, my brothers and sisters. And it will always be good news.

Dr Williams calls for ‘shared honesty’

8 May, 2009
by Pat Ashworth

THE Anglican Communion may not survive its current crisis over authority and dif­fering theological perspectives, the Archbishop of Canterbury acknowledged on Tuesday.

But he insisted: “Even if we are separated by a number of canonical, theological determinations; even if we blew apart as a communion in chaos and disruption, which God forbid, sooner or later we would have to hear the voice of Christ say: ‘There’s your brother, there’s your sister, there’s a long journey for you together in the path towards reconciliation.’”

Dr Williams was giving the Anglican Con­sul­tative Council (ACC) a 40-minute presenta­tion on the recommendations of the final report of the Windsor Continuation Group (WCG), the body created, as he put it, to “con­tain the chaos and division” that threatened the Communion over the issue of human sexuality. the rest

Federal Bill Would Add Pro-Gay Policies to Public Schools


Family advocates are concerned by the so-called Safe Schools Improvement Act, which was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives this week.

The anti-bullying bill would require many public schools to add special protections for students based on sexual orientation and gender identity, in addition to race and religion.

Candi Cushman, education analyst at Focus on the Family Action, said this bill would force an adult political agenda into schools under the guise of “safety.” the rest

Lesbians look to boot Boy Scouts from own facilities

Ruling threatens faith-based groups trying to help in their communities
May 06, 2009
By Bob Unruh
© 2009 WorldNetDaily

With work ramping up in Washington on a "hate crimes" bill that would create special rights for homosexuals, a case that addresses a related issue – claims by same-sex couples they have the right not to be "offended" by "straight' morality – has been presented to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The case involves a series of projects by the Boy Scouts of America in San Diego. The private organization has provided millions of dollars in improvements to public facilities in exchange for their use but faces being banned because homosexuals and lesbians who never even were exposed to the work claimed their feelings were hurt. the rest

Catholics Overwhelmingly Oppose Notre Dame Honor to Obama: Ramussen Poll

May 7, 2009

( - A new Rasmussen Reports survey finds that more than twice as many Americans - and a wider margin of Catholics - oppose the University of Notre Dame's decision to give an honorary law degree to President Barack Obama, as those who support it.

The Rasmussen Reports telephone survey found that, by a 60% to 25% margin, U.S. Catholics say Notre Dame should obey guidelines issued by the U.S. bishops and refrain from awarding an honorary degree to the president. Among all Americans, 52% oppose the honor and 25% support it.

"Faithful Catholics are sick to the heart over this scandal, which reflects decades of such scandals in our Catholic institutions," said Patrick J. Reilly, President of The Cardinal Newman Society. the rest

George Washington University Honors Group That Vandalized Pro-Life Display

Fr. Corapi Weighs in on the Notre Dame Scandal
May 08, 2009

Records suggest Pelosi, others were told of harsh interrogations

Information released by the White House describes dozens of briefings for congressional leaders on CIA methods, including waterboarding and the planned destruction of interrogation videotapes.
By Greg Miller
May 8, 2009

Reporting from Washington -- Congressional leaders were briefed repeatedly on the CIA's use of severe interrogation methods on Al Qaeda suspects, according to new information released by the Obama administration Thursday that appears to contradict the assertions of House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

The records describe dozens of congressional briefings about CIA decisions that since have emerged as major sources of controversy -- including the agency's use of waterboarding and its destruction of videotapes of interrogation sessions. the rest

Obama Adviser Harry Knox Accused Catholic Church of ‘Insulting’ Jesus, Accused Pope of ‘Hurting People in the Name of Jesus’

Friday, May 08, 2009
By Terence P. Jeffrey, Editor-in-Chief

( - A homosexual-rights activist whom President Obama appointed last month to a White House advisory council had--just three weeks before his appointment--posted a statement on the Web site of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s most prominent homosexual-rights organization, accusing Pope Benedict XVI, leader of the Roman Catholic Church, of “hurting people in the name of Jesus.”

The activist had previously posted statements on the HRC Web site accusing the Catholic Church of “insulting” Jesus and of “sending a message that violence and human rights abuses against LGBT people are acceptable." the rest

The Obama Lexicon

Report from ACC-14 Day 6 -The $1.5 million Indaba

May 8th, 2009

The first part of today’s report was written by Robert Lundy, AAC Communications Officer. The second part of today’s report was written by the Rev. Can. Dr. Chris Sugden of Anglican Mainstream.

$1.5 Million Dollar Indaba

The process that some hope will save the Anglican Communion comes with a $1.5 million dollar price tag. Equally as interesting is who is paying for that process.

Canon Philip Groves is the facilitator of the "Listening Process," a process begun in 1998 that has sought to seek a "common mind upon the issues which threaten to divide us" according to an ACC-14 publication. The main focus of this listening process has been on "monitoring the work done on the subject of human sexuality in the Anglican Communion and included listening to the experience of homosexual persons and the experience of local churches around the world in reflecting on these matters in the light of Scripture, tradition and reason."

On Wednesday, Canon Groves presented the delegates of ACC-14 with a new vision for what the listening process could address in the Communion. This new vision, called the Continuing Indaba project, included taking an African-rooted process of decision making and consensus building, known as "indaba," that seeks to have all the parties involved come together to dialogue, and apply it to the root controversies that are perceived to underlie the problems in the Anglican Communion. This new and improved listening process would address issues over the authority of Scripture, faithfulness to tradition and respect for the dignity of all. the rest

Anglican faith schools get 'values' on website

Archbishop of Canterbury praises scheme in video message on site, but religious thinktank accuses it of hypocrisy
Riazat Butt, religious affairs correspondent
Friday 8 May 2009

The Church of England is urging its 5000 schools to practise what they preach by launching a new website –

The project, commissioned by the Church of England's National Society , is aimed at making the country's CofE schools "distinctively Christian", and the site includes a section on the values upon which church schools are supposed to be based, with biblical verses and theological explanations.

In a video message to launch the site, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, says: "A Christian school is one in which the atmosphere has that kind of openness about it, that sense that people are worth spending time with, that people need time to grow, need loving attention. the rest

Colson: My Friend Jack Kemp

May 8th, 2009
by Charles Colson

My friend Jack Kemp died this past weekend at 73.

His obituaries list many accomplishments: seven-time all-star quarterback for the Buffalo Bills and the American Football League’s most valuable player in 1965. Eight-term congressman from Buffalo, New York, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and the 1996 Republican vice-presidential candidate.

As our mutual friend Fred Barnes wrote in the Weekly Standard, it’s hard to think of any congressman in recent memory who accomplished more, setting the stage for the Reagan Revolution and economic opportunity for all Americans.

But as remarkable as Jack’s accomplishments were, Jack the man was even more so. He personified all of the classic virtues—temperance, prudence, courage, and justice. But today I want to focus on one especially—courage. the rest

Thursday, May 07, 2009

What Will Replace Western Civilization? Watch and See

May 06, 2009

Found here

ADV Welcomes New Congregation in Richmond

(via email)

May 7, 2009–The Anglican District of Virginia has announced that Holy Cross Anglican Church, Richmond, Va., has joined the orthodox Anglican organization.

“We are pleased to welcome Holy Cross Anglican Church and are grateful that we continue to see growth within ADV. More people are becoming emboldened to stand up for Biblical truth and are excited to be a part of an orthodox Anglican body in the U.S. ,” said ADV Contact Bishop David Bena.

Holy Cross Anglican Church was formed in 2007 and the Rev’d Jonathan Pietschman has served as its rector from the beginning. “We feel ADV is a fit for us because of its tie to the Common Cause Partnership and the emerging Anglican Province . Our parish wants to remain a part of the worldwide Anglican Communion and ADV represents a good place for us to be. In addition, we already have a sense of fellowship with ADV given that congregants are friends with members of other ADV parishes. We look forward to partnering with ADV in mission and ministry,” he said.

Before getting into the ministry, Mr. Pietschman was in the U.S. Air Force for 25 years, both on active and reserve duty. He graduated from Baptist Theological Seminary in 1995. He served for four years as the pastor of Colonial Place Christian Church in Richmond . He has been a chaplain for the Henrico County Division of Police for 10 years and was a chaplain for seven years at Bon Secours, St. Mary’s Hospital, Richmond , before currently serving as a patient advocate.

Holy Cross Anglican Church worships on Sunday at 9:00 a.m. at Bennett's Funeral Home, 14301 Ashbrook Parkway , Chesterfield , VA 23832 . They offer a children’s church service at the same time as the regular service. For more information, visit

Western Louisiana Backs Bishop on Church Polity

May 7, 2009

The standing committee of the Diocese of Western Louisiana voted unanimously May 6 to approve a statement that affirms the integrity of diocesan governance in The Episcopal Church.

“As a diocesan standing committee, we acknowledge and desire to be a diocese in full communion with the wider Anglican Communion and the See of Canterbury,” the statement reads in part. “As a diocese we oppose any actions by General Convention that would mandate financial assessments from dioceses to the General Convention budget, or exercise control of trust interests on diocesan or congregational assets.”

The statement is intended to demonstrate the standing committee’s support for its diocesan bishop, the Rt. Rev. D. Bruce MacPherson, who is one of 11 diocesan bishops who recently endorsed a statement of concern that the polity of the The Episcopal Church as a “voluntary association of equal dioceses” was in grave peril because of uncanonical actions by the Presiding Bishop and her appointed staff. the rest

A.S. Haley: From the Outside in, or Vice Versa?

May 7th, 2009

How Others See the Episcopal Church (USA):

An Anglican priest, a Muslim and a Zen Buddhist walk into a bar. The bartender says, "What can I get you, lady?"

Anglican jokes, like Anglicans, aren’t something you run across too often. That’s too bad, because there’s a rich vein of absurdity to be mined in the Church of the Frozen Chosen.

Thus Toronto writer Nancy Gall opens her recent piece, "Ecumenism Gone Wild", in the Holy Post, the religion blog of Canada's Daily Post. The "Church of the Frozen Chosen" is explained elsewhere this way: "Where the Lord warms your heart---but only a little bit." Ms. Gall continues:

Take Reverend Ann Holmes Redding — or just plain Ann as she’ll soon be, having been deposed as an Episcopalian priest for declining to stop being a Muslim. Ms. Redding, a priest of 20 years standing and the director of faith formation at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral in Seattle, WA., saw no reason to turn in her white collar when she found herself drawn to Islam in 2006. Given a year or so to think it over, the “Islamopalian,” as she’s known in the hillbilly encampments of the Anglican blogosphere, was finally deposed by her bishop earlier this month when she refused to disavow her dual religious identity.

“I am both Muslim and Christian, just like I’m both an American of African descent and a woman,” she told the Seattle Times in June, 2007. “I’m 100% both.”

"Church of the Frozen Chosen," "Islamopalian"---the epithets just ask to be invented, given that the subject is religion as witnessed by today's Episcopal Church. First, of course, comes its current leaning toward Zen Buddhism: the rest-don't miss this!

Proposed Moratorium on Litigation Omitted from Draft Resolution

The Living Church
May 7, 2009

One of the foremost items on the Anglican Consultative Council’s agenda is consideration of the final report of the Windsor Continuation Group (WCG). During a May 6 press briefing, the Rt. Rev. Gregory Cameron, Bishop of St. Asaph (Wales) and former deputy secretary general of the ACC, said he did not know why a fourth moratorium—on litigation—had been noted in the WCG’s final report but was omitted from the draft resolution of nine recommendations proposed by the Joint Standing Committee of the ACC and primates (JSC) for approval by the ACC.

The WCG was set up by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 2007 to advise him on the implementation of the recommendations of the Windsor Report, how best to carry forward the Windsor Process in the life of the Communion, and to consult on the “unfinished business” of the report. The ACC will be discussing the WCG report and considering a resolution about it on May 8.

ACC representatives approved a series of resolutions on May 5, including one from the International Anglican Women’s Network (IAWN) that “requests that appointments to all inter-Anglican standing commissions, and all other inter-Anglican committees, design groups, or appointed bodies … provide equal representation of women on each body.” the rest

Questions raised over goals and funding of ACC's proposed “Continuing Indaba Project"

Thursday, May 07, 2009

According to reports coming out of the ACC meetings in Jamaica, "The 14th Anglican Consultative Council today welcomed the proposal for a 'Continuing Indaba Project,' the next stage of the so-called Listening Process on the issue of human sexuality in the Anglican Communion.

"The "Continuing Indaba Project" is extended to 2011 and is to be funded by the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at the Morehouse School of Medicine.The Satcher Health Leadership Instituter's funding programs, it has been learned, includes financing directly from the secular Ford Foundation, author of the progressive initiative, Sexuality and Social Change: Making the Connection.

the rest

Obama Admin Terrorism Dictionary Calls Pro-Life Advocates Violent, Racist

by Steven Ertelt Editor
May 5, 2009

Washington, DC ( -- More details are emerging about a terrorism dictionary the administration of President Barack Obama put together in March. The newly-revealed document comes on the heels of a report the Department of Homeland Security sent out saying pro-life advocates were right-wing extremists.

The latest report to cause national outrage is a document known as the "Domestic Extremism Lexicon," essentially a terrorism and political extremism dictionary for the Obama administration's internal use.

The March 26, 2009 document features numerous definitions and the headline "antiabortion extremism," appears on page two of the eleven-page manual.

The Obama administration calls pro-life advocates violent and claims they employ racist overtones in engaging in criminal actions. the rest

European Fascist Movements are Led by Homosexuals According to Gay Journalist

Says gay men have been at the heart of every major fascist movement that ever was - including the Third Reich
By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman
BRITAIN, May 6, 2009

( - With the rise of an increasingly militant and even violent homosexual movement which has threatened and assaulted Christians for their opposition to their political agenda, homosexual activists in the U.S. and Europe have been increasingly accused of "homofascism.

"Now, a self-described "gay left-wing" journalist in Britain has admitted that the fascist tendency of homosexuals is far more than a conservative rhetorical trope.

Johann Hari, a reporter for the Independent newspaper points out in a recent article for the ultra-leftist Huffington Post that, despite their official condemnation of sodomy, the leadership of European fascist movements is dominated by homosexuals.

"If you inter-railed across Europe, only stopping with gay fascists, there aren't many sights you'd miss," Hari writes with amazing frankness. the rest

JAMAICA: Egyptian Archbishop Questions Listening Process Affirming Homosexuality

Mouneer Anis Says Money Used as a Weapon to Influence TEC's Pro-gay Agenda
By David W. Virtue in Jamaica

The Rt. Rev. Mouneer H. Anis, President Bishop of the Episcopal/Anglican Church of Egypt and the Middle East, told delegates to the Anglican Consultative Council-14 that if the Anglican Communion tolerates the practice of homosexuality, it will require a different kind of dialogue.

Speaking from the floor following a presentation by Canon Philip Groves who heads the London-based Listening Province, Archbishop Anis asked what (the Anglican Communion) would like to achieve. If we are to achieve better pastoral care and to prevent homophobia, we need to know how to care for people with homosexual orientation. Homosexual practice does not go with Christian love, he said.

"But if the achievement is to tolerate the practice of homosexuality, it requires a different kind of dialogue. We cannot just listen to people who are homosexual but we need a cultural dialogue as well. For me in our context I am aware of people of homosexual orientation, but for youth seeking help it is something abnormal, it is shameful thing in our culture and it is a crime and people can be punished for supporting its practice." the rest

Hymn sung by delegates:

Lord of our Diversity
Unite us all we pray
Welcome us to fellowship
In your inclusive way

Sanctify our listening
And help us get the sense
Of perplexing arguments
Before we take offence

Teach us all to have respect
To love, and not deride
Save us from the challenges
Of selfishness and pride

Teach us that our opinions which
At first may seem quite strange
May reflect the glory of
Your great creative range

May the Holy Spirit
Show us the way preferred
May we follow the commands
Of your authentic word

Ten Years Later, Boy's 'Hand of Hope' Continues to Spark Debate

Wednesday, May 06, 2009
By Joshua Rhett Miller

Nearly 10 years after a stunning photograph of his tiny hand traveled the world, Samuel Armas has a firm grip on what "The Hand of Hope" means to him.

"When I see that picture, the first thing I think of is how special and lucky I am to have God use me that way," Samuel told "I feel very thankful that I was in that picture."

On Aug. 19, 1999, photographer Michael Clancy shot the "Fetal Hand Grasp" — his picture of a 21-week-old fetus grasping a doctor's finger during innovative surgery to correct spina bifida. Nearly four months later, on Dec. 2, Samuel Armas was "born famous."

The photo, which first appeared in USA Today on Sept. 7, 1999, quickly spread across the globe as proof of development in the womb and was later cited during congressional debates on the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, which passed in 2000. the rest image

Report from ACC-14 Day 5 part 2

Coming to a church meeting near you: Indaba funded from Atlanta, Georgia
May 7th, 2009

Today the report was presented from the Listening Process. In short, the ideology of seeking common ground between contradictory points of view that has characterized the listening process so far, has been combined with the Indaba process at Lambeth and extended to cover a range of theological issues.

The listening process has been extended to 2011 and funded by the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at the Morehouse School of Medicine, for a project of Continuing Indaba.

Vinay Samuel has written of the Indaba Process:

“The Lambeth centre of the Anglican Communion is experienced as exercising colonial power. How else can the continued resistance of the Anglican Communion instruments to carrying out the decisions of the Primates Meeting over the last five years, leading to the acknowledged dominance of the 2008 Lambeth Conference by Archbishop Williams, be explained?

The Lambeth centre continues to impose its hegemony by introducing into all the central meetings of the Communion, Lambeth, the Primates’ Meeting in Egypt and the ACC meeting in Jamaica, the indaba process. This is designed to maintain matters as they are and avoid all discussion and decision about Anglican identity, membership and morality. Worse, this process claims to use a deracinated process that those from the Global South are expected to acknowledge as a tribute to their cultural contribution.

The GAFCON Primates Council has created for itself uncolonial space; the GAFCON Conference and Jerusalem declaration witnessed to the power of the gospel to liberate and transform people not only from oppression in their own societies but also from the power of a colonial mindset which needed to acknowledge the Church of England as their mother church to bolster their own identity.

Indaba is the badge of oppression. It is the badge of a non-revelational faith and an untransforming gospel. It should be resisted.”

Here is how this has happened....
Full report

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Devotional: Patience is not indifference...

Patience is not indifference; patience conveys the idea of an immensely strong rock withstanding all onslaughts. The vision of God is the source of patience, because it imparts a moral inspiration. Moses endured, not because he had an ideal of right and duty, but because he had a vision of God. He "endured, as seeing Him Who is invisible." A man with the vision of God is not devoted to a cause or to any particular issue; he is devoted to God Himself. You always know when the vision is of God because of the inspiration that comes with it; things come with largeness and tonic to the life because everything is energized by God. If God gives you a time spiritually, as He gave His Son actually, of temptation in the wilderness, with no word from Himself at all, endure, and the power to endure is there because you see God. ...Oswald Chambers image

Pakistani Christian girl raped and murdered

by John Pontifex
Saturday, May 2, 2009

A nine-year-old Christian girl in Pakistan was reportedly gang-raped before being killed and dumped in a canal – and outrage is growing amid reports that almost a month later nobody has been arrested.

Nisha Javid was walking close to her home when she suddenly disappeared, prompting her parents to mount a search for her.

Barely two days later, with a police-led search underway, her body was found in a canal not far from the Javids’ home in Essangri village, outside the town of Jaranawala, Faisalabad. A post mortem revealed Nisha had been gang-raped and had died after repeated blows to the head. the rest

Christian girl is gang-raped and murdered in Pakistan

US cyberbully bill 'a threat to free speech'

Proposed law could threaten valid online criticism, say bloggers
Wednesday 6 May 2009

American bloggers have reacted angrily to proposals for a new law that could potentially make it illegal to criticise or make fun of somebody online.

Linda Sanchez, a Democratic congresswoman for California, is leading a bill intended to combat cyberbullying – but opponents say the law's limits are vague and threaten freedom of speech.

The bill, which is being submitted to Congress for the second time, proposes that any electronic communication intended to "coerce, intimidate, harass or cause substantial emotional distress" could be punished with a fine or a prison sentence of up to two years.

According the proposals, the new rules would cover email, blogs, instant messaging and texts.

Opponents are concerned that it could violate the US constitution's first amendment – which guarantees freedom of expression – and threatens valid online criticism, despite Sanchez's assertion that "ranting" would not become illegal.

But Eugene Volokh, a professor at the UCLA school of law and one of the most high-profile political bloggers in the US, has attacked the proposals as "overbroad" and "constitutionally vague". the rest

Prison Awaiting Hostile Bloggers

Oklahoma legislature asserts sovereignty, overrides veto

May 6, 2009
by Ed Morrissey

The Oklahoma House defied a veto from Democratic Governor Brad Henry to approve a resolution asserting its sovereignty under the Constitution. The Senate had approved the initial resolution 29-18, just shy of the two-thirds needed to sustain an override, but this new bill does not require his signature. Backers are optimistic that they will succeed in sending a message to Washington DC to start limiting themselves to truly federal tasks: the rest

Rectors’ Declaration of Support for the Bishops’ Statement on the Polity of the Episcopal Church

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009
Found here

A group of Bishops of the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion have issued a statement on the polity of the Episcopal Church with which we as Rectors of churches in the Episcopal Church are in full agreement. Our understanding of the seat of authority in the Episcopal Church, as elaborated by the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church, is consistent with that elaborated in the Bishops’ statement. We also find the arguments supporting the statement to be compelling and worthy of intentional study by the sundry dioceses, bishops, deputies, clergy and laity of the Episcopal Church.

The authority of the Episcopal Church resides at the diocesan level. This is witnessed to by the structure of the church as “that of a voluntary association of equal dioceses.” Also, the Constitution and Canons of the Church make no provision for either a central hierarchy or a Presiding Bishop with metropolitan authority. Furthermore, our General Convention representation is as dioceses and not as communicants, with only an administrative role for the convention leadership, the voting members of the leadership themselves drawn from the diocesan deputations. In addition, the ordinal does not contain any language acknowledging or committing to submit to any metropolitan or central hierarchal authority.
We agree with the statement by the Bishops that the “traditional doctrine and worship and the historic polity of the Church are in grave peril.” In the matter of utmost importance to the catholic nature of the Church, we stand with the signing Bishops who “intend to exercise [their] episcopal authority to remain constituent members of the Anglican Communion.” For those of us who faithfully serve in dioceses that choose to reject or ignore the covenant, we ask our Diocesans not to impede the adoption of the Covenant by parishes in our dioceses. Such grace will allow these parishes and clergy to obey their consciences and calling to be members of the Anglican Communion and the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

April 22nd, 2009

The Rev. Dr. Charles Alley
Rector, St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church
Richmond, Virginia

The Rev. John D. Badders, Jr.
Rector, St. John’s Episcopal Church
McAllen, Texas

The Rev. Phyllis Bartle
Rector, St. Jude’s Episcopal Church
Orange City, Florida

The Rev. Milton E. Black, Jr.
Rector, Church of the Good Shepherd
Corpus Christi, Texas

The Rev. Christopher Andrew Bowhay
Rector, St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church
Houston, Texas

The Rev. William J. Cavanaugh
Rector, Church of the Epiphany
Richardson, Texas

The Very Reverend Anthony Clark
Dean, St. Luke’s Cathedral
Orlando, Florida

The Rev. Joseph N. Davis
Rector, Church of the Resurrection
Franklin, Tennessee

The Very Rev. Canon Richard C. Doscher, Sr.
Rector, St. Alfred’s Episcopal Church
Palm Harbor, Florida

The Rev. Mifflin Dove, Jr.
Rector, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Katy, Texas

The Rev. Robert G. Eaton
Rector, St. John Episcopal Church
Tulare, California

The Rev. Theodore W. Edwards, Jr.
Rector, St. George’s Episcopal Church
Bradenton, Florida

The Rev. Richard H. Elwood
Rector, St. Barnabas Episcopal Church
Fredericksburg, Texas

The Rev. Frank E. Fuller
Rector, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church
Beaumont, Texas

The Rev. Ronald E. Greiser, Jr.
Rector, St. John’s Episcopal Church
Portsmouth, Virginia

The Rev. Laurens A. Hall
Rector, St. John the Divine
Houston, Texas

The Rev. John F. Hardie
Rector, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church
Corpus Christi, Texas

The Rev. Theodore E. Hervey, Jr.
Rector, Epiphany Episcopal Church
Bertram, Texas

The Rev. John M. Himes, OSF
Rector, Trinity Episcopal Church
Marshall, Texas

The Rev. Charles L. Holt
Rector, St. Peter’s Episcopal Church
Lake Mary, Florida

The Rev. Robert Horowitz
Rector, Church of the Redeemer
Greenville, South Carolina

The Rev. Thomas S. Hotchkiss
Rector, Church of The Advent
Nashville, Tennessee

The Rev. Robert T. Jennings
Rector, St. Francis in the Fields
Harrods Creek, South Carolina

The Rev. Bennett G. Jones, II
Rector, St. Paul Episcopal Church
Munster, Indiana

The Rev. Timothy Jones
Senior Associate Rector, St. George’s Episcopal Church
Nashville, Tennessee

The Rev. Jerome A. Kramer
Rector, Church of the Annunciation
New Orleans, Louisiana

The Rev. Gerald W. Krumenacker, Jr.
Rector, Christ Church
Dallas, Texas

The Rev. Ronald James LeBlanc
Priest-in-Charge, Church of the Incarnation
Lafayette, Louisiana

The Rev. Dr. Russell J. Levenson, Jr.
Rector, St. Martin’s Episcopal Church
Houston, Texas

The Rev. John S. Liebler
Rector, St. Andrew’s Church and Academy
Fort Pierce, Florida

The Rev. Ramiro E. Lopez, Jr.
Rector, St. George Episcopal Church
San Antonio, Texas

The Rev. Daniel H. Martins
Rector, St. Anne’s Episcopal Church
Warsaw, Indiana

The Very Rev. Dr. Jean McCurdy Meade
Rector, Mount Olivet Episcopal Church
New Orleans, Louisiana

The Rev. Mark A. Michael
Rector, Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church
Sharpsburg, Maryland

The Rev. Ian Montgomery
Retired Rector, St. Thomas Church
Menasha, Wisconsin

The Rev. Joel J. Morsch
Rector, Christ Church
Bradenton, Florida

The Rev. Elizabeth L. Myers
Rector, St. Francis of Assisi
Lake Placid, Florida

The Rev. David G. Newhart
Rector, St. Elizabeth’s Episcopal Church
Sebastian, Florida

The Rev. John Newton
Rector, Messiah Episcopal Church
Saint Paul, Minnesota

The Very Rev. Timothy C. Nunez
Rector, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church
Belleview, Florida

The Rev. Robert P. Price
Rector, St. Dunstan’s Episcopal Church
Houston, Texas

The Rev. Dr. Darrel D. Proffitt
Rector, Church of the Holy Apostles
Katy, Texas

The Rev. Fredrick Arthur Robinson
Rector, The Church of the Redeemer
Sarasota, Florida

The Rev. Mark Seitz
Rector, St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church
Wheeling, West Virginia

The Rev. John Thomas Sheehan
Rector, The Church of Our Redeemer
Aldie, Virginia

The Rev. Dr. Jerry Smith
Rector, St. Bartholomew’s Parish
Nashville, Tennessee

The Rev. Leigh Spruill
Rector, St. George’s Episcopal Church
Nashville, Tennessee

The Very Rev. Canon Harold L. Trott, SSC
Vicar, Church of Our Saviour
Albuquerque, New Mexico

The Rev. Eric W. Turner, Sr.
Rector, St. John’s Episcopal Church
Melbourne, Florida

The Rev. Guido Verbeck
Rector, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Shreveport, Louisiana

The Very Rev. Dr. Edward A. Weiss, OSB, APC
Rector, Church of Our Saviour
Okeechobee, Florida

The Rev. John T. Wells
Rector, Episcopal Church Of The Holy Spirit
Waco, Texas

The Rev. Ted Welty
Interim Rector, Christ Episcopal Church
Tyler, Texas

The Rev. Stockton Williams, Jr.
Rector, St. Peter’s Episcopal Church
Kerrville, Texas

The Rev. Dr. Kenneth A. Wolfe
Rector, The Parish of Christ Church
Fitchburg, Massachusetts

The Rev. Michael Wyckoff
Rector, St. Luke’s on the Lake
Austin, Texas

Setback for Third Province movement in San Jaoquin ruling

Wednesday, 6th May 2009
By George Conger

The third province movement in the United States may have received a severe setback this week after a California court issued a tentative ruling holding that dioceses are creatures of the national Episcopal Church and may not secede.

On May 4, Judge Adolfo Corona of the Fresno Superior Court issued a preliminary opinion, stating that he would likely issue a summary judgment on behalf of the Episcopal Church against Bishop John-David Schofield and the Anglican Diocese of San Joaquin.

As a matter of law and fact the judge argued, the Episcopal Church was a “hierarchical church is one in which individual churches are organized as a body with other churches having similar faith and doctrine, and with a common ruling convocation or ecclesiastical head vested with ultimate ecclesiastical authority over the individual congregations and members of the entire organized church.”

“In a hierarchical church, an individual local congregation that affiliates with the national church body becomes a member of a much larger and more important religious organization, under its government and control, and bound by its orders and judgments,” he said. Under this principal, a parish is a subunit of a diocese, which is itself a subunit of the national Episcopal Church, the Judge Corona reasoned. the rest

Archbishop Williams: Moratoria, Listening Process Both Essential

May 6, 2009

During a 40-minute presentation to participants at the Anglican Consultative Council meeting in Kingston, Jamaica, on May 5, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams linked the continuation of the listening process with the continuation of a three-fold moratoria on same-sex blessings, the consecration of homosexual persons to the episcopate, and cross-border incursions by bishops.

Without such a commitment [to listening] “we’re not going to move forward at all in mutual understanding,” and without the moratoria, “it’s unlikely the listening process will go anywhere,” the archbishop said.

Archbishop Williams’ remarks came as he explained the recommendations of the Windsor Continuation Group’s final report. The 22-page document was commissioned to recommend ways in which the Anglican Communion could maintain unity amid a diversity of understanding about human sexuality and theology. the rest

No need for a Welsh ‘flying bishop’

Wednesday, 6th May 2009
By George Conger

There is no need for a “Flying Bishop” for Welsh traditionalists, the Archbishop of Wales told members of the church’s Governing Body last week, as the pastoral care offered by the current bishop’s bench is sufficient to meet the needs of all Welsh Anglicans.

Responding to a question from a member of the Governing Body during is April 22 session in Llandudno, Dr Barry Morgan said the bishops were offering “pastoral and sacramental care to every member of the Church in Wales, without exception.”

He added that there was “room in the Church in Wales for those who in conscience cannot accept the ordination of women.” However this latitude did not extend to episcopal oversight. the rest

Albert Mohler: The Disappearance of God: Dangerous Beliefs in the New Spiritual Openness

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

I am very pleased that my latest book, The Disappearance of God: Dangerous Beliefs in the New Spiritual Openness was released yesterday by Multnomah Books. This new book takes a look at many of the most controversial issues facing the church today. My hope is that it will serve the church well.

Here is the Preface to The Disappearance of God:

Has God disappeared? The tragic reality is that we are living in an age that is marked by so much spiritual and theological confusion that the God of the Bible has largely disappeared from view -- replaced by less imposing deities that are more amenable to the modern mind.

In one sense, we are witnessing the result of secularization and the evaporation of biblical theism from our public life. To this we must add the privatization of truth and the fact that millions of Americans claim a divine right to their own spiritual cocoon and belief system. As the song suggests, Americans now lay claim to “their own personal Jesus.” This personal vision of Jesus Christ may well bear little or no resemblance to Jesus as he is revealed in the Bible. the rest

Israel's Hebrew Catholics keep the faith

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

With just 400 faithful, the Hebrew-speaking Vicariate is dwarfed by the much larger Palestinian Christian community, estimated at some 180,000 in Israel and the Palestinian territories, which will be the main focus of the pope's eight-day visit starting Friday.

Established in 1955 by a small group which included several converted Jews, some of them Holocaust survivors, the vicariate largely keeps to itself in a country founded as a Jewish state in which Christians are often suspected of being missionaries.

The Hebrew prayers reverberate through the humble Catholic chapel in Jerusalem where whitewashed walls are adorned with a small metal cross and two pictures of Jesus lined with Hebraic inscriptions.

The worshippers are part of a tiny Hebrew-speaking Catholic community, some of them descendants of Holocaust survivors, that has quietly kept the faith in the heart of Jewish state for half a century and will remain in the shadows during the visit by Pope Benedict XVI.
the rest

Obama to be prayer day no-show

President to sign proclamation, observe privately
By Julia Duin
Wednesday, May 6, 2009

President Obama is distancing himself from the National Day of Prayer by nixing a formal early morning service and not attending a large Catholic prayer breakfast the next morning.

All Mr. Obama will do for the National Day of Prayer, which is Thursday, is sign a proclamation honoring the day, which originated in 1952 when Congress set aside the first Thursday in May for the observance.

For the past eight years, President George W. Bush invited selected Christian and Jewish leaders to the White House East Room, where he typically would give a short speech and several leaders offered prayers. the rest

Delegates weigh ‘tighter time frame’ for covenant approval process

Marites N. Sison
staff writer
Kingston, Jamaica
May 5, 2009

Bishop Gregory Cameron, former deputy secretary general of the Anglican Communion and secretary to the Covenant Design Group said he detects that many delegates to the 14th Anglican Consultative Council meeting here would like a “tighter time frame” for the approval process of the proposed Anglican Covenant rather than the recommended 2014 deadline.

The question of when member churches of the Anglican Communion should state whether they would be signing on to the Covenant “is obviously surfacing” and he has heard from some council members “that they would like to see a tighter time frame for the reception of the covenant than that proposed,” Bishop Cameron told a press briefing. “Obviously it’s too early to say where the mind of the council will settle. But there are certainly some that say a tighter time frame would be more appropriate.” the rest

Anglican Curmudgeon: Arguments in San Joaquin

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Oral argument was held in the San Joaquin litigation today. There were three matters before the court, of which only two were significant - the motion for summary adjudication by Bishop Lamb, the plaintiff "Diocese of San Joaquin", and ECUSA; and their demurrers to Bishop Schofield's cross-complaint, which seeks reimbursement for the expenses (including legal fees) he has had to incur in defending against their main lawsuit.

Arguments began a little after 3:30 p.m., and did not conclude until a little after 5:00 p.m. In between, the court had to hear some other matters, and so in the final analysis, the court heard about an hour of argument on the motion for summary adjudication, and about twenty or so minutes on the demurrers. After it was all over, Judge Corona thanked counsel for their presentations, and took the matter under submission.

There are normally two kinds of outcome to this kind of oral argument after a tentative ruling. In the first, the judge listens politely to all the parties, lets them have their say, and then issues an order affirming his tentative ruling a day or so later---he scarcely changes a thing. the rest

Archbishop Williams calls for more cohesive, theologically aware communion

Anglican Consultative Council considers recommendations for strengthening bonds
By Mary Frances Schjonberg
May 05, 2009

[Episcopal News Service -- Kingston, Jamaica] Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams told the representatives of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) meeting here May 5 that he wants the Anglican Communion be "more cohesive and more theologically aware."

During his 40-minute presentation on the recommendations of the Windsor Continuation Group's final report, Williams said that he does not have "complete and absolute confidence that the Anglican Communion in something like the form it had 20 years ago is going to survive this crisis" over authority and differing theological perspectives.

He told those participating in the May 2-12 gathering that there "may or may not be a lasting division" in the communion, "but before we do say goodbye to each other in the communion, we owe it to the Lord of the church to have those conversations and to undertake that effort at listening to one another and taking one another seriously in the Gospel." the rest

Report from ACC 14-Day Four

By the Rev. Can. Dr. Chris Sugden, Anglican Mainstream
and the Rev. Philip Ashey, C.O.O, American Anglican Council
May 5th, 2009

So what are we presented with? In essence it would appear that the Archbishop is preparing himself and the communion for a significant change. He admitted it could no longer be the communion it was 20 years ago. Therefore the proposals are not an attempt to put the clock back, put Humpty Dumpty back together again or the toothpaste back in the tube.

Rather they could be seen as a time-honoured process, whereby a group with senior power seeks to retain that power while all along seismic shifts are taking place at other levels. These proposals are not about solving the current crisis or bringing the divisions in the Communion to an end. These proposals are about continuing the listening process, enabling people to restate their positions over and over again without any time limit, and accepting that there will be some ruptures and breaks but still keeping them within the current instruments of communion which are being modified to take account of them.

I tested this observation on two senior Episcopal participants in the current meeting who agreed with this analysis.

Now on to the Rev. Philip Ashey’s comments on the Pastoral Visitors Scheme and the idea of mediated conversation on parallel jurisdictions....

And here:
Those who left TEC after years of "dialogue" over the fundamentals of the faith and issues of human sexuality understand the futility of this process. They crossed the Red Sea (figuratively speaking) and were rewarded by inhibition, deposition, loss of income, costly litigation, and/or loss of their churches. At present, during this post-Alexandria Communiqué period of "gracious restraint," (1) the Rev. Don Armstrong and his wife are today being evicted by TEC litigation from the home they purchased with the vestry of Grace Church; (2) the 18 volunteer vestry members of Grace Church are being sued by TEC and the Episcopal Diocese of Colorado individually for the mortgage on the church buildings from which they have just been evicted; and (3) the vestry of St. James Newport Beach is also being sued individually for $6 million in legal fees by the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles.

For such victims of TEC’s attempt to literally destroy them corporately, individually, and financially, all such talk of "professionally mediated conversations" by the Archbishop of Canterbury, his representatives and the ACC is pure fantasy and utterly divorced from reality.

They will not be repatriated to Egypt-and certainly not under any arrangement that views them as the problem, and not TEC.

And there lies the rub with a "provisional holding arrangement". Anyone familiar with legal language knows what a "holding arrangement" or "holding tank" is: it’s the room where "troublemakers" are held before they are brought before judge and/or jury for a plea, trial and sentencing.

the rest-full report

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Devotional: The more I understand and contemplate Jesus' surrender of Himself for me...

The more I understand and contemplate Jesus' surrender of Himself for me, the more do I give myself again to Him. The surrender is a mutual one: the love comes from both sides. His giving of Himself makes such an impression on my heart, that my heart with the self-same love and joy becomes entirely His. Through giving Himself to me, He of Himself takes possession of me; He becomes mine and I His. I know that I have Jesus wholly for me, and that He has me wholly for Him....

And how come I then to the full enjoyment of this blessed life? ...Through faith I reflect upon and contemplate His surrender to me as sure and glorious. Through faith I appropriate it. Through faith I trust in Jesus to confirm this surrender, to communicate Himself to me and reveal Himself within me. Through faith I await with certainty the full experience of salvation which arises from having Jesus as mine, to do all, all for me. Through faith I live in this Jesus who loved me and gave Himself for me. ...Andrew Murray image

Obama Democrats Accent Bullying Over Governing

Amity Shlaes

May 5 (Bloomberg) -- So Michele Bachmann’s version of history is “from another planet.” Bobby Jindal, the Republican governor of Louisiana, is “chronically stupid.” And Eric Cantor of Virginia, the second-ranking Republican in the House, is “busy lying constantly.”

That at least is according to posts on three left-leaning blogs.

Writers who are not pro-Barack Obama are suffering character assassination as well. George Will of the Washington Post, the nation’s senior conservative columnist, has been so assaulted by bloggers that his editor, Fred Hiatt, recently wrote, “I would think folks would be eager to engage in the debate, given how sure they are of their case, rather than trying to shut him down.”

The disconcerting thing isn’t that the bloggers or their guests did this slamming. We’re used to such vitriol in campaign time. What is surprising is that the attacks are continuing after an election.

In the past, politicians and policy thinkers tended to be magnanimous in victory. They and their friends focused, post- victory, on policy and strategy -- not on trashing individuals. the rest

St. James Church's legal battle over it's property moves to the U.S. Supreme Court; Writ of Certiorari to be filed this month

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – May 5, 2009 – St. James Anglican Church, at the centerpiece of a nationally publicized church property dispute with the Episcopal Church, announced today that it will file a petition for writ of certiorari with the United States Supreme Court to resolve an important issue of religious freedom: Does the United States Constitution, which both prohibits the establishment of religion and protects the free exercise of religion, allow certain religious denominations to disregard the normal rules of property ownership that apply to everyone else?

Under longstanding law, no one can unilaterally impose a trust over someone else’s property without their permission. Yet, in the St. James case before the California Supreme Court, named Episcopal Church Cases, the Court created a special perquisite for certain churches claiming to be “hierarchical,” with a “superior religious body,” which may allow them to unilaterally appropriate for themselves property purchased and maintained by spiritually affiliated but separately incorporated local churches. St. James will argue before the U.S. Supreme Court that this preferential treatment for certain kinds of religion violates the U.S. Constitution. the rest (h/t babyblueonline)

TLC: California Church Appeals to U.S. Supreme Court

Midwest Conservative Journal: blog down

Temporary site here

Welcome to the new capitalism: Law and contracts no longer have meaning

By Star Parker
Tuesday, May 5, 2009

For a host of reasons, mostly massive government meddling and social engineering, the mortgage market exploded and thus, we’ve got homeowners who can’t make payments.

The House passed bill proposes to bail these folks out by paying banks servicing the mortgages $1,000 for each one they re-finance, cutting interest rates and payments. Those who actually own the loans—the bondholders—are left out to pasture. And, the bill protects servicing banks from lawsuits to which they would normally be exposed for breaking their contracts.

So taxpayers will subsidize banks to refinance the bad loans they originated but no longer own, homeowners who borrowed beyond their means get bailed out, and investors—the bondholders—are left to bear the costs. On top of this, many of these same banks originated second mortgages on these same homes. The second mortgages, which the banks still own, bear even higher interest rates because they are allegedly more risky. Yet, they will be left secure and undisturbed.

Aside from the costs that our society will bear as law and contracts no longer have meaning, Frey rightly points out that it all will just make future mortgage borrowing more expensive. Who will take risks to lend when politicians can change contracts at the drop of a hat?

Welcome to the new capitalism. Where politicians rule, irresponsible behavior is rewarded, and theft is legal. Full essay

Culture of Death Watch: The Media Are Becoming Increasingly Pro Suicide

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Pay close attention to how the story I am about to discuss from the Philadelphia Inquirer was written to give a favorable impression of a suicide.

It is about a woman named Rona Zelniker, who killed herself because of a disabling disease. Note that the word "suicide" is never used except in a brief reference to the Oregon law. There is no doubt that was deliberate: The (assisted) suicide movement has convinced many in the media not to use that term except in cases of transitory distress or teenagers--because it is judgmental and has a negative connotation. Can't have that: Suicide for reasons of disease or disability should be viewed positively. the rest

Website: N.D. Protest

On Graduation Day at Notre Dame, May 17, the Pro-Life Action League and Citizens for a Pro-Life Society are joining forces for a massive protest of President Obama’s commencement address. image

Website here

Barack Obama's Notre Dame visit provokes huge Catholic backlash, PR disaster

Mormons and the cross

Historian learns early Mormons did not eschew the cross as a symbol
By Peggy Fletcher Stack
The Salt Lake Tribune

It's no accident that Mormon steeples, temples and necks are free of Christian crosses.

LDS leaders long have said the cross, so ubiquitous among traditional Christians, symbolizes Jesus' death, while Mormons worship the risen Christ. Some Latter-day Saints go even farther, condemning the cross as some kind of pagan or satanic symbol.

Now a historian at California State University in Sacramento claims in a just-completed master's thesis that Mormon aversion to the cross is a relatively recent development in LDS history, prompted in part by anti-Catholic sentiments. the rest

Ron Howard’s ‘Demon’ Defense Doesn’t Hold Water

by Andrew Leigh

People do not believe lies because they have to, but because they want to. -Malcolm Muggeridge

Reading Angels and Demons, I wasn’t so much struck by the work’s bigotry as by how badly it was written. The cliched style is the literary equivalent of cotton candy. And for someone with so much animus toward religion, Brown employs the deus ex machina more frequently than the Old Testament.

But more disturbing is Brown’s commingling of fact and fiction disguised as fact, aimed at convincing his readership that the Catholic Church is vehemently, even violently anti-science, and therefore anti-progress and anti-reason.

By fiction disguised as fact, I don’t mean standard historical fiction techniques like creating new characters against a backdrop of actual historical events. I mean massively altering or fabricating historical events and chronologies. For instance: virtually every historical fiction writer fudges dates a little, but Brown shifts key timelines by more than a century.

Perhaps Brown counts on most of us to be too lazy or obtuse to fact-check his work on the Internet. And judging from his hordes of unquestioning fans (and, usually, myself), he’s probably right. the rest

Will new evidence clear Bishop Bennison?

Tuesday, 5th May 2009
By George Conger

New evidence has been unearthed that defence attorneys claim exonerates Pennsylvania Bishop Charles Bennison of the charges of conspiracy and misconduct. In an April 17 motion filed with the Episcopal Church’s Court for the Trial of a Bishop, lawyers for the suspended bishop have asked the court to toss out their guilty verdict, or grant the controversial bishop a new trial.

Letters allegedly written by the victim to her abuser, the Rev John Bennison, brother of the bishop, the bishop’s lawyers argue impeach her testimony at trial that the bishop knew about his brother’s abuse but took no action. the rest

Canadian bishops side-step gay debate

Tuesday, 5th May 2009
By George Conger

The global economic meltdown and the Anglican Communion’s divisions over homosexuality took centre-stage last week at the Canadian House of Bishops’ meeting in Niagara Falls.

However, in their April 23 “letter to the church” the bishops declined to address head-on the splits within the Canadian Church over gay marriage, saying only that they had “reviewed motions by General Synod 2007 concerning same-sex blessings.”

Divisions over doctrine and discipline centring round sexual ethics have so far led to the creation of 28 parishes served by three former Anglican Church of Canada bishops and 73 priests and deacons under the umbrella of the Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC) --- the Canadian wing of the third province movement in North America. In 2007 General Synod declined to authorize rites for same-sex blessings, but asked for further study as to “whether the blessing of same-sex unions is a faithful, Spirit-led development of Christian doctrine.” the rest

First Things: Can Barack Obama Be Converted on Abortion?

By Edward T. Oakes, S.J.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The short answer to that question is: probably not. In a news conference on April 29, a reporter asked President Obama this uncomfortable question:

As a candidate, you vowed that one of the very first things you wanted to do was sign the Freedom of Choice Act, which, as you know, would eliminate federal, state, and local restrictions on abortion. And at one point in the campaign, when asked about abortion and life, you said that it was above—quote, “above my pay grade.” Now that you’ve been president for a hundred days, obviously your pay grade is a little higher than when you were a senator. [Laughter] Do you still hope that Congress quickly sends you the Freedom of Choice Act, so you can sign it?

To which the President made this squirming reply: the rest

BNP denies racism after Sentamu slur

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The British National Party has denied being racist after one of its senior figures called the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, an "ambitious African" and “anti-British”.

Simon Darby, the deputy leader of the BNP said that the Ugandan-born Archbishop had no right to preach to British people and suggested that Ugandans were likely to kill outspoken foreigners with spears. the rest

Paintings of churches not allowed at London hospital

Albert Mohler: True Lips Wait? Sexual Abstinence, Romantic Longing, and Monogamous Lips

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

This will come as no news to most younger evangelicals, but The Tennessean [Nashville] has just taken notice of the fact that a sizable number of younger evangelical couples are saving their first kiss for their wedding ceremony.

As the paper reports, "In a culture where casual sex is the norm, some Tennesseans have taken the purity pledge to a whole new level, through a practice that some teens refer to as the 'Virgin Lips Movement.'"

Reporter Claudia Pinto began her article with the fact that Katy Kruger, who was married on December 13 of last year, experienced her first kiss at the moment her new husband kissed his bride. "The 22-year-old woman, who was married at Harpeth Hills Church of Christ in Brentwood, admits to being nervous and a bit self-conscious about having her first kiss in front of 200 people," Pinto reported. "I wasn't sure what to do," said the bride, "I thought I would mess up." the rest image

Student Wins Suit After Teacher Says Creationism 'Superstitious Nonsense'

Monday, May 04, 2009

SANTA ANA, Calif. — A federal judge ruled that a public high school history teacher violated the First Amendment when he called creationism "superstitious nonsense" during a classroom lecture.

U.S. District Judge James Selna issued the ruling Friday after a 16-month legal battle between student Chad Farnan and his former teacher, James Corbett.

Farnan sued in U.S. District Court in 2007, alleging that Corbett violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment by making repeated comments in class that were hostile to Christian beliefs. the rest

Church of Scotland: Online protest over gay minister

Monday, 4 May 2009

A fifth of all Church of Scotland clergy have signed an online petition against the appointment of an openly gay minister, BBC Scotland can reveal.

Concern has been raised within the Kirk that failure to overturn the appointment could provoke a mass walkout by many members.

The petition relates to Reverend Scott Rennie, the minister at Queen's Cross Church in Aberdeen. the rest

California Court Rules Against Bishop Schofield

May 4, 2009

The Episcopal Church has prevailed on all issues in its dispute with the former leadership of the Diocese of San Joaquin, according to a tentative ruling for summary judgment issued May 4 by a Fresno County Superior Court judge.

Oral arguments are scheduled for tomorrow, but the summary judgment indicates that the judge intends to rule in favor of The Episcopal Church, barring unforeseen developments.

“The documents are clear,” according to the ruling. “Only the 'Bishop' of the Diocese of San Joaquin has the right to the incumbency of the corporation originally entitled 'The Protestant Episcopal Bishop of San Joaquin, a Corporation Sole' and given the number C0066488 by the Secretary of State. Moreover, the Episcopal Church has spoken as to who holds the position of Bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin – Reverend Lamb. Defendants challenge Lamb’s election as Bishop on procedural grounds such as notice and quorum, but this court has no power to rule on the validity of the Episcopal Church’s election of its Bishops.” The Living Church