Saturday, January 26, 2013

Let nothing be to you an occasion of unbelief...

Let nothing be to you an occasion of unbelief.
 If thou considerest the stones, even they contain proof of the power of their Maker; and so does the ant, the gnat, the bee. In smallest things the wisdom of the Creator is oftentimes displayed. He who stretched out the heavens, and poured forth the mighty volume of the sea, He it is who hollowed the minute sting of the bee to shed its virus through. You must not say that anything was done by chance. But His judgments are like the great deep.
...Basil the Great image

Boy Drumming on Washing Machine

"Whirled Beat". Seattle-area boy (age 10 at time of publish) enjoys exploring the undiscovered, percussive sounds of household appliances. He also owns a Pearl drum kit, has been taking lessons for over a year, but is mainly self-taught in general percussion. His main inspirations are Neil Peart and Buddy Rich.

If you're a curious washing machine geek, it's a Speed Queen, super-capacity plus, 14-cycle washer with stainless steel drum. Great for reverberation and for getting your socks brilliant white!
 Part I here:

A.S. Haley: An Open Letter to My Fellow Episcopalians in South Carolina

Friday, January 25, 2013

Dear Committed Episcopalians in South Carolina,

As a lifelong Episcopalian myself, and as an attorney of 42 years’ experience who in 1980 began to be conversant in the canon law of my Church, I write to you on the eve of your special convention in Charleston tomorrow, which will be convened by our Presiding Bishop. (Full disclosure: I am currently co-counsel to the Anglican Diocese of San Joaquin, and am actively opposing my own Church’s litigation against their former bishop, because I so strongly believe that what it is doing in that regard is just plain un-Scriptural, and wrong.)

I do not write with the purpose of sowing discord or confusion. There are those already in the leadership of our Church who have done more than enough of that.

I write instead because I perceive clearly that you are about to be sold a bill of goods, and the goods in the bill are not genuine. Therefore, my principal message to you is: caveat emptor! Look carefully at the motives of those who want to sell the goods to you.

This particular bill of goods was first written only in 2008. I repeat: these goods did not exist in our Church before 2008, when they were invented out of whole cloth by our Presiding Bishop’s Chancellor, Mr. David Booth Beers. (He may or may not be present at your gathering tomorrow; I have no information on that point. But his presence is not necessary, because Bishop Jefferts Schori herself has become so conversant with the goods in question that she is fully capable of offering them to you as the real thing.) the rest

Friday, January 25, 2013

South Carolina loyalists defy ban on using diocesan name and shield

Episcopal Forum of SC attacks judge's ruling as "bizarre"
January 25, 2013
By George Conger

The loyalist faction within the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina has unleashed a torrent of abuse against Bishop Mark Lawrence and the diocesan leadership as well as Judge Diane Goodstein following her order of 23 Jan 2013 blocking them from using the name, symbols or seal of the diocese.

Compliance with the court’s order has also been spotty. On Wednesday, Bishop Charles vonRosenberg told Anglican Ink the loyalist group would comply with the court’s order, and a spokesman for the South Carolina steering committee, Holly Behre, told the Associated Press they would honor Judge Goodstein’s ruling and will adopt a name that will comply with the spirit of the court order until the matter is resolved.

However compliance with the order, which went into effect at 5:11 pm on Wednesday has been slow. The group’s website did not remove the shield or the claim to be the Episcopal Dicoese of South Carolina until late Thursday.

As of our going to press, the loyalist group’s fundraising site,, continues to display the diocesan shield (as shown above) and holds itself out to be the true Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina, in apparent disregard of Judge Goodstein’s order which stated in part: “No individual, organization, association or entity, whether incorporated or not, may use, assume, or adopt in any way, directly or indirectly, the registered names and the seal or mark of The Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina.” the rest

40th annual March for Life will draw crowd to Mall

January 25, 2013

WASHINGTON - The streets are clear of inaugural participants, but thousands of visitors are heading back to the National Mall Friday for an entirely different event.

Anti-abortion activists from across the nation will take to D.C.'s streets for the 40th annual March for Life, a march that commemorates the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion. Organizers say they hope the crowd will surpass the march's record of 400,000 demonstrators, and even the attendance of 1 million people at the inauguration. "It would be fantastic if the numbers topped those of the inauguration," says Jeanne Monahan, president of the March for Life Education and Defense Fund. "However, it would be an act of God -- it would be a miracle if that happened."  the rest image

Catholic college cancels classes to encourage students to March for Life

Pope tweets support for U.S. March for Life

Scrolling around...January 25, 2013

Court rules Obama recess appointments unconstitutional
A federal appeals court, dealing a defeat to President Obama, has sharply limited the chief executive’s power to bypass the Senate and to make temporary “recess” appointments to fill vacant slots in government agencies.
The Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, in a 3-0 ruling, said the president can make recess appointments only when the Senate has formally adjourned between sessions of Congress, not when lawmakers leave Washington for a brief break.
The Obama administration is almost certain to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court. But if the ruling stands, it strengthens the power of the Senate’s Republican minority at the expense of Obama and the Democrats... MSNBC Contributor Blames Republicans for Obama's Unconstitutional Recess Appointment

U.S. Catholic bishops review lawsuit saying fetuses not people
Three Colorado bishops said on Thursday they will review a Catholic Church hospital's defense of a lawsuit that argues fetuses do not have legal status - apparently contradicting the Church's teaching on life issues...

Obama's Fourth Year in Office Ties as Most Polarized Ever
Seventy-six-point gap in party ratings of Obama ties Bush in 2004-2005

Chinese Workers Revolt Over 2-minute Toilet Breaks
Hundreds of Chinese factory workers angry about strictly timed bathroom breaks and fines for starting work late held their Japanese and Chinese managers hostage for a day and a half before police broke up the strike.

“Mounting Religious Restrictions in Europe”
Over at the site of the (excellent) Religious Freedom Project (a project of Georgetown's Berkley Center), Roger Trigg has a very informative essay called "Canary in the Coal Mine," in which he discusses four recent decisions handed down by the European Court of Human Rights...

Click to enlarge
Feinstein Exempts Government Workers Who Guard Members Of Congress From Assault Weapons Ban

The Church, Nonprofits, and Taxes
...IRS guidelines for nonprofits—which are available on the agency’s Web site—are often misunderstood. While many people use these terms interchangeably, the IRS specifically defines “politics” as seeking to influence the election of candidates and “lobbying” as seeking to influence legislation.
According to the IRS, all 501 (c) (3) nonprofits cannot endorse or oppose candidates for elected office and make financial contributions to political campaigns. In 1964, the liberal Protestant magazine Christian Century lost its tax-exempt status for one year after it endorsed President Lyndon Johnson for re-election.
Nonprofit organizations, however, can certainly praise or criticize candidates, elected officials, political parties, and their stands on public policy issues and controversies without specifically telling people to vote for or against them. This is what many nonprofits have been doing since the passage of the 1954 Internal Revenue Act, which added section 501 (c) to the federal tax code that specified the types of organizations that qualified for tax-exemption...

Child Pornography: The Price of a Stolen Childhood
...Until the 1970s, magazines with titles like Lolita were rife with sexual images of minors and routinely sold alongside adult pornography at red-light bookstores. In 1978, Congress made child pornography illegal, and four years later, the Supreme Court upheld a state law banning its sale. The court’s decision changed the market along with the law. “The commercial distributors started to go out of business,” said Kenneth Lanning, a retired F.B.I. agent who consulted on child pornography cases for decades. For a time, distribution and production plummeted. But then came the Internet. By the mid- to late 1990s, Lanning said, “there was a way for people seeking it to find each other and send images.”...

Malicious prosecution warnings for Episcopal clergy

Newark firm writes to TEC clergy about their risks under Title IV
January 25, 2013
By George Conger

A bulk email offering assistance akin to a pre-paid legal services plan has refocused the Episcopal Church’s attention on flaws within the new Title IV Ecclesiastical Discipline canons.

A 17 January 2013 email from CanonLawyer, Inc., an organization set up by long-time General Convention deputy and the former chancellor of the Diocese of Newark, Michael Rehill, elicited a wave of chatter amongst the clergy of the Episcopal Church after it warned of the risks of malicious prosecution under the new code.

In the personally addressed email, Mr. Rehill states: “I am writing to you because you are a Member of the Clergy of the Episcopal Church, and you are at risk of facing a proceeding under Title IV of the Canons of The Episcopal Church.”

He states that “as a result of recent revisions to Title IV, many more Members of the Clergy are now facing ecclesiastical discipline,” adding “You need to be prepared before it happens to you.” the rest
 He states that “as a result of recent revisions to Title IV, many more Members of the Clergy are now facing ecclesiastical discipline,” adding “You need to be prepared before it happens to you.”
ACNA to review women’s orders
The College of Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) has agreed to launch a Task Force examining the question of the Holy Orders of women clergy. Meeting last week in Orlando, the ACNA bishops set down a five part protocol studying the question of women clergy in conjunction with the issues of Prayer Book reform, the creation of a Catechism for the church, and a review of its ecclesial structures...

African outrage over civil partnership decision

Settlement reached in Episcopal misconduct cases
A settlement agreement has been reached in the disciplinary proceedings of 9 American bishops accused of misconduct for holding and propounding contrary views on church history and polity to those of Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

Last week representatives of the accusers: Bishops C. Wallis Ohl, Jr., and John Buchanan, met with representatives of the accused: Bishops Peter H. Beckwith, Maurice M. Benitez, John W. Howe, Paul E. Lambert, William H. Love, D. Bruce MacPherson, Daniel H. Martins, Edward L. Salmon, Jr, and James M. Stanton, three observers from the House of Bishops: Mary Gray-Reeves, Edward S. Little, Michael Milliken to sign a “conciliation” agreement...

FrontPageMag: Anti-Israel Zealots Chastise Episcopal Church
Prominent, radically anti-Israel Episcopalians are urging their denomination to adopt a more aggressive stance towards Israel, including divestment. The Episcopal Church largely has stood back from some of the more stridently negative policies towards Israel adopted by other old-line Protestant denominations. It has avoided serious consideration of anti-Israel divestment. And its officials did not endorse an ecumenical plea with other denominations last October asking the U.S. Congress to reconsider U.S. military aid to Israel, a plea prompting major Jewish groups to cancel scheduled interfaith dialogue with those denominations...

Thursday, January 24, 2013

When I am sore beset...

When I am sore beset, I seek some quiet place,
Some lonely room or barren windswept hill,
And there in silence wait apart until
I see again the smile upon God's face;
Until His presence floods me like the dawn,
And I can hear His whispered, "Peace, be still,"
And know the strength to do His will.
I turn to take my load and find it gone.
--Antoinette Goetschius image

Stand For Life: The Piper Interview

Jan 22, 2013

Marking the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court decision on abortion that launched a generation of prolife labor, John Piper sits down with John Ensor and Scott Klusendorf to talk about abortion, the gospel and the stand for life.

ACNA: Archbishop Duncan Announces Two Appointments

posted January 24, 2013

The Most Rev. Robert W. Duncan, Archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America, has announced two honorary appointments. Both non-stipendiary positions will add significant value to the mission and ministry of the province and to the work of the Archbishop.

The Rev. Prof. Dr. Stephen Noll has been appointed “Special Advisor on the Global Anglican Future,” a role for which he is uniquely qualified.

“Prof. Noll is an authority on the Anglican Communion and the theological compromises that have torn the fabric of the Communion,” notes Archbishop Duncan. “Along with this new advisory position, he will also serve as the North American member of the GFCA International Theological Commission.”...

...The Rev. Canon J. Phillip Ashey, Chief Operating Officer of the American Anglican Council (AAC), has been named as “Canon for Special Initiatives.” He is an elected member of the Executive Committee of the Province and has agreed to undertake special assignments as requested by the Archbishop.

“Canon Ashey directs a number of programs through his work at the AAC and is an authority on canon law,” said Archbishop Duncan. “He is also well known in international circles and will be a strong asset.”...  full story

Jan 24, 2013

The Church of England's House of Laity recently attempted to remove its chairman, Dr. Philip Giddings. The vote for no confidence came in the wake of a heated debate on women bishops in the Church of England-a debate where Dr. Giddings defended the views of the minority which oppose women bishops. In this week's Anglican Perspective, Canon Ashey looks at what the Bible says about disputable matters within the Church.

Sanger’s Racist Genocidal Plans and The Masque of the Red Death

January 24, 2013
By Elizabeth Scalia

I haven’t commented about the creepy “Happy Anniversary Video” celebrating 40 years since Roe v. Wade; the suave African American man, holding a rose and cooing about the wonder of this anniversary really is, as Marc Barnes writes, “the creepiest sh*t…”

If you haven’t seen the video, you should go to Marc’s place and watch. One of the truly chilling (and, yes, creepy)things about it is that for African Americans, abortion in America has been a true genocide. As we learned last week, in New York City, abortion ends almost 70% of all African American pregnancies.  the rest image

Scrolling around...January 24, 2013

It's Official: Worst. Recovery. EVER
If there was any debate whether the Fed's policies have helped the economy or just the market (and specifically the Bernanke-targeted Russell 2000), the following two charts will end any and all debate. As the following chart from the St Louis Fed shows, as of the just completed quarter, US GDP "growth" since the "recovery" is now the worst in US history, having just dipped below the heretofore lowest on record...

The Reality That Awaits Women in Combat
...Many articles have been written regarding the relative strength of women and the possible effects on morale of introducing women into all-male units. Less attention has been paid to another aspect: the absolutely dreadful conditions under which grunts live during war...

America’s favorite heresy enters the Inauguration tradition
...Many lovers of religious license savored the hyper-inclusivity of Evers-Williams’ supplications. At first her speech directly addressed America itself; only later into the invocation did she invoke the “Almighty.” Indeed, the civil rights leader seemed to be lecturing the American people as a motivational speaker. She encouraged her listeners to seize “the opportunity to become whatever our mankind, our womankind allows us to be.” Evers-Williams expanded the theme of self-actualization by noting that “everyone is included” and by petitioning the President to “rule in favor of the diversity of our people.” She praised “one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all,” carefully excising “under God.”...   

...Other portions of the prayer sounded more mystical. In her praise of past generations, Evers-Williams hoped, “May their spirit infuse our being.” “Let their spirit guide us as we claim the spirit of old: ‘There’s something within me that holds the reins/There’s something within me that banishes pain/There’s something within me I cannot explain/But all I know, America, there is something within. There is something within!” she finally concluded.

Those familiar with America’s religious heritage realize that these beliefs are nothing new to the United States. They perfectly represent Transcendentalism...

Europe's Wishes Came True
...In short, Europe got the European Union of its hopes and a changed America of its fantasies -- but both are rapidly becoming its worst nightmares.

Now They Tell Us: Obama's Tax Promises Were Bogus
But somehow after the election, reporters are finally admitting that Obama's budget numbers simply don't add up and that new taxes on the middle class — including a European-style value added tax — are "inevitable."...

Robert George warns of Catholic oppression over marriage
A Princeton law professor has predicted increasing persecution of Catholic teaching on sexuality, amid accusations by a New York scholar that such teaching creates a culture of rape...

So what if abortion ends life? I believe that life starts at conception. And it's never stopped me from being pro-choice -proud to support murder

American College of Nurse Midwives lends support to “gender variants”
Anyone else feel like it really is a tide that is turning these days? The American College of Nurse Midwives issued a statement in support of working towards quality, competent care for trans and gender non-conforming people...

North Korea to carry out third nuclear test 'aimed at US'
North Korea has announced plans to carry out a third nuclear test as part of "upcoming all-out action" against America...

Forbes is a case study on how conservatives lose institutions
I’ve noticed, but not commented on, how the only time I go to anymore is to read a liberal attack on conservatives.
I’ve wondered, has Forbes changed? Yes it has...

Keystone XL pipeline: Nebraska’s approval puts Obama in a bind
In just the first week of his second term, President Obama is being confronted with what could become one of the most controversial decisions of his presidency: what do with the Keystone XL pipeline...  Sen. Ted Cruz to Obama: Keystone Pipeline Approval 'Not a Hard Decision'

Court blocks loyalist convention for Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina

10 Day restraining order handed down

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

15 more parishes join South Carolina lawsuit against the Episcopal Church

44 congregations back bishop, 16 opposed, 11 undecided
January 22, 2013
By George Conger

The Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina reports that 15 further congregations have joined it in their 4 Jan 2013 lawsuit against the national Episcopal Church.

The 22 Jan statement reported that of the dioceses congregations, 31 had joined the lawsuit against the national church, 13 congregations were supporting Bishop Mark Lawrence and the diocese against the national church but had not yet joined the litigation, nine missions and two parishes had not declared how they would act, while eight parishes and eight missions had indicated they would remain affiliated with the national Episcopal Church.

“We are saddened that legal action is necessary to protect our members from an organization that uses the threat of legal action as a cudgel to keep its parishes in line,” Bishop Lawrence said. the rest

Today a day of mourning for children killed by abortion

Reclaiming the Human Center of the Abortion Debate

Today a day of mourning for children killed by abortion
Today is the 40th Anniversary of the Roe v. Wadedecision that legalized abortion, and it's been set aside as a day of mourning throughout the country by many organizations...

55,772,015 Abortions in America Since Roe vs. Wade in 1973

First Things: Marching for Life
I am unable to forget the “March for Women’s Lives” held on a beautiful D.C. Sunday in April 2004. Its Orwellian event title referring to aborting mothers not unborn females: As the Indigo Girls sang and Whoopi Goldberg held up her coat-hanger, one of the largest banners in the crowd of thousands read “Pro-Life is to Christianity as al-Qaeda is to Islam.”

My profound sadness at this scene of lostness led me to join the small Feminists for Life contingent across the street. In response to my “Women Deserve Better than Abortion” placard, middle-fingers and shouts of “How do you know what women deserve!” flew at me, and two lesbians purposely made out right in front of us in an odd effort to counter our counter-protest. Clearly, there were also thousands of less hostile people in attendance as well, and some civil conversations were had. Still, even the mass produced “It’s Your Choice, Not Theirs” signs spoke to issues of power, control, and antagonism that largely fueled this crowd... image

Mother Teresa: Roe v. Wade ‘has deformed a great nation’
...“Human rights are not a privilege conferred by government. They are every human being’s entitlement by virtue of his humanity. The right to life does not depend, and must not be declared to be contingent, on the pleasure of anyone else, not even a parent or a sovereign..."

The 40 Film to be released this summer...

Scrolling around...January 22, 2013

New York Governor: Abortion Is the Greatest Thing EVAH!
...All in all, this bill is a declaration of war on those who seek to perform invaluable medical services for millions of New Yorkers in pursuit of a religious calling that the state has now deemed beyond the pale. It’s also a good old-fashioned Bronx cheer for those who think that abortion is somewhat less important in our constitutional scheme of things than freedom of speech or religion, or who think that abortion mills should be at least as well policed as your average pizza parlor. It may go down well on the Upper West Side, but I suspect fly-over country may have a somewhat dimmer view of it.

Obama: 'Our journey is not complete' until we redefine marriage
President Barack Obama forcefully advanced the homosexual agenda in his second inaugural address this afternoon, saying redefining marriage must be enacted “by [God's] people here on earth."...

First Lady Rolls Her Eyes At Boehner As He Jokes With President

President Obama's socialist agenda will divide America
–or, rather, make the existing divisions even more bitter and rancorous

Krauthammer: Obama Speech "A Declaration That The Era Of Big Government Is Back"
...In 1981, in his inaugural address within two minutes, Reagan had declared that government is not the solution, government is the problem. Today's inaugural address was a rebuke to that entire idea. This speech today was an ode to big government. It was a hymn to big government. In his refrain, the three we the people's, he said, number one I'm going to defend what liberalism has achieved in the 21st century -- where he mentioned Social Security. Medicare, Medicaid. So, I'm not going to let any of that be chipped away. And then, second, he said the vision for the future is climate change and green energy, this is going to be his new expansion of liberalism in the new century. And then the third element was his expansion of civil rights, where he talked about immigrants and gays and even shoe-horned the gun rights under the rubric of security...

Inaugural Prayer Controversies
...The Presidential Inaugural Committee promised after the Giglio controversy that “we now work to select someone to deliver the benediction, [and] we will ensure their beliefs reflect this administration’s vision of inclusion and acceptance for all Americans.” Keeping their promise, they chose Episcopal clergy Luis Leon of historic St. John’s Church next to the White House. Mostly low key, Leon supports his denomination’s pro-LGBT stance and backed same-sex marriage in Washington, D.C. He prayed at Bush’s 2005 inauguration. His prayer this time cited “gay and straight” and avoided mentioning Christ...
Also: Washington National Cathedral: Seat of Liberalism

For the first time ever, I deliberately chose not to watch the inauguration-too deadening to my heart and soul.  -PD