Tuesday, February 25, 2014

A.S. Haley: What Will the Supreme Court Do with The Falls Church Case?

February 25, 2014

The docket sheet in the United States Supreme Court tells the tale. After receiving an extension of time, The Falls Church filed on October 9 in the Supreme Court its petition for writ of certiorari (or review) of the decision rendered by the Virginia Supreme Court last April 18 (and its denial of a rehearing on June 14).

The ever-cocky Episcopal Church (USA) and the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia, following its lead, declined to file responses to the petition.  Four amici curiae (“friends of the court”, being organizations interested in the case) filed briefs in support of The Falls Church: ACNA, the Presbyterian Lay Committee, St. James Anglican Church in Newport Beach, CA, and the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. The case went to conference last December just on those briefs. And—lo and behold!—the Court ordered ECUSA and its Diocese to file a response before it ruled on the petition.

Such a request is noteworthy, because the Court’s Rules explain that the Court ordinarily does not grant a pending petition without first calling for a response to it.  Had the Court taken no interest in the petition, on the other hand, it could have denied the petition outright at its December 6 conference. the rest

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The road to true intimacy with God...

The road to true intimacy with God is an inward journey, proceeding into His Presence through the entrance gate of quietness of the soul. It is a narrow track that lies well off the beaten path, virtually unseen and ignored by the vast majority of humanity careening headlong through life. ...Jim Goll image

The Silent Was On Religious Liberty; Obama's attack on Medicare; Your Neo-Pagan Neighbor and the Gospel...more

Jindal: The silent war on religious liberty
...Today the American people, whether they know it or not, are mired in a silent war. It threatens the fabric of our communities, the health of our public square, and the endurance of our constitutional governance. It is a war against the propositions in the Declaration of Independence. It is a war against the spirit that motivated abolitionism. It is a war against the faith that motivated the Civil Rights struggle. It is a war against the soul of countless acts of charity. It is a war against the conscience that drives social change. It is a war against the heart that binds our neighborhoods together. It is a war against America’s best self, at America’s best moments. It is a war — a silent war — against religious liberty. This war is waged in our courts and in the halls of political power. It is pursued with grim and relentless determination by a group of like-minded elites, determined to transform the country from a land sustained by faith — into a land where faith is silenced, privatized, and circumscribed. Their vision of America is not the vision of the Founding. It’s not even the vision of ten years ago. It’s a vision in which an individual’s devotion to Almighty God is accorded as much respect as a casual hobby — and with about as many rights and protections...

Obama’s ‘attack’ on Medicare Part D
The Obama administration is launching an “attack” on the Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D programs as part of Obamacare that will result in higher costs and fewer health care options for seniors, according to a U.S. House subcommittee.

The administration is quietly introducing “policies that would undermine the integrity and success of the Medicare Part D program” according to the subcommittee. President Bush signed Medicare Part D into law in 2003 to subsidize prescription drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries...

Your Neo-Pagan Neighbor and the Gospel
...And this is why an abortive culture is so necessary in a neo-pagan culture. If we glorify sex and pursue it without reference to virtue, teleology, or eventual care for others, then we will of necessity need to find a way to dispose of the unwanted fruit of sex (children). Because we have fetishized and become hypnotized by the sensation, we must dispose of the offspring that sex normally creates...

Russians Changing Attitudes on Church Attendance, Religious Beliefs
...Surveys from the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project indicate more of Russia’s population has affiliated with Orthodox Christianity. According to an analysis of information gathered between 1991 and 2008, the number of Russian adults who call themselves Orthodox Christian rose from 31 percent to 72 percent. This data was gathered from the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP). The organization of social scientists in around 50 countries did research that indicated the share of Russia’s population that does not identify with any religion dropped from 61 percent to 18 percent. The ISSP says other religions (Islam, Protestant Christianity and Roman Catholicism) did show an increase in adults, but then plateaued...

Ukraine Names Interim President After Removing Yanukovich; Protesters Hail Victory