Friday, August 01, 2014

TD turns ATMs into Automated Thanking Machines


July 24, 2014

TD turns ATMs into Automated Thanking Machines to create some very special moments for customers across Canada.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 112


Jul 31, 2014 
         
Anglican Unscripted is the only video newscast in the Anglican Church. Every Week Kevin, George, Allan and Peter bring you news and prospective from around the globe. Please donate at http://anglican.tv/donate

00:00 Kevin and George discuss the fall out after COE votes for Women Bishops

A.S. Haley: Making Sense of the Trial in South Carolina

July 31, 2014

In trying to make sense of the trial in South Carolina (which I did not attend, but know only from the reports of those who did), I noted certain pervasive themes.

First, the trial was a clash of diametrically opposed camps. Bishop Lawrence, his parishes and his Diocese were focused on going forward with their evangelical mission; the lawsuit was a drag on their ability to do so. Bishop vonRosenberg and his Episcopal Church (USA) were obsessed with looking back – to what they viewed as a hierarchical structure from the outset; to the prerogatives of national power that are concomitant to such a structure; and especially to the power wielded collectively by the House of Bishops, and by the Presiding Bishop in their absence.

Second, the trial was a clash of legal strategies dictated by the law of South Carolina. This case came to trial against the background of the South Carolina Supreme Court’s 2009 decision in All Saints Waccamaw Parish v. The Episcopal Church, a case I analyzed in this earlier post. The Court held two things: first, that a religious body who followed its own procedures, and South Carolina law, in amending its governing documents could not have those amendments declared void in the absence of superior church laws or rules forbidding such amendments, and which were in place before the dispute arose; and second, that the only kind of a religious trust that could have any effect under South Carolina law was one declared in a writing signed by the owner of the property being placed in trust – and not by the national church unilaterally, in its role as a putative beneficiary of any such trust.

Both holdings were premised on the declaration that South Carolina courts were to follow “neutral principles of law” in resolving church property disputes, and not by deferring automatically to determinations made internally by church bodies or personnel who were not the “highest judicatory bodies” in that church.

Given this backdrop, the strategy pursued by Bishop Lawrence and his attorneys was to emphasize the absence of any language of limitation or deference in the governing documents of either the diocese, or of its member parishes, and to show how they followed their own governing procedures in voting to leave the national Church. But the strategy pursued by ECUSA and its attorneys was designed to try to fool the trial court into thinking that this was not a dispute over property at all, but was instead a fight over opposing religious doctrines. (The First Amendment prohibits secular courts from getting involved in such disputes, and so ECUSA hoped that by painting the matter that way, the court would be forced to accept ECUSA’s designation of who were the true successors in interest to Bishop Lawrence’s diocese, once it voted to leave.)

To her great credit, Judge Goodstein refused to be baited into the trap which the defense steadfastly set for her with their objections, arguments, and proffered witnesses and testimony.  Time and again she emphasized that her hands were bound by the All Saints Waccamaw decision, and that she could proceed upon no other ground except that dictated by neutral principles of law – which is to say, the ground upon which each and every other kind of property dispute is resolved in South Carolina courts of law. The remarkable thing is that I see no possible advantage to the strategy pursued by the defense, whether on appeal in the state or federal courts. One cannot get around the Waccamaw decision; on can only confront it head-on. By failing to do so during the fourteen days of trial, ECUSA pretty well conceded its own case.

Third, the trial was a battle over image. ECUSA was fighting over its brand as the church of America’s wealthy and powerful elite, whose roots go back to before the Revolution; Bishop Lawrence’s diocese was fighting for its place in the traditions of Anglicanism – which equally go back to before the Revolution. For ECUSA, other Anglicans must simply get used to what it does, because it claims to be the only legitimately Anglican franchise in America; for +Lawrence and his Episcopal (“bishop-led”) Diocese, ECUSA’s brand of Anglicanism is no Anglicanism at all – one needs to distance oneself from it as fully as possible, by claiming solidarity with GAFCON and similar Anglican groups.

Fourth, the immediate stakes were the money and the property – but in the final analysis, the real issues were power and authority. Bishop Lawrence and his diocese confined their initial lawsuit just to a claim against ECUSA to quiet title to their property, and prevent infringement of their seal and trademarks... Excellent analysis-the rest here

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Anglican Unscripted Episode 111


Jul 30, 2014
         
Anglican Unscripted is the only video newscast in the Anglican Church. Every Week Kevin, George, Allan and Peter bring you news and prospective from around the globe. Please donate at http://anglican.tv/donate

00:00 Kevin and George do a follow up story on Nashotah House

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

God is pursuing with omnipotent passion...

Flags
God is pursuing with omnipotent passion a worldwide purpose of gathering joyful worshipers for Himself from every tribe and tongue and people and nation. He has an inexhaustible enthusiasm for the supremacy of His name among the nations. Therefore, let us bring our affections into line with His, and, for the sake of His name, let us renounce the quest for worldly comforts and join His global purpose. If we do this, God’s omnipotent commitment to His name will be over us like a banner, and we will not lose, in spite of many tribulations. ...John S. Piper image

Military: Gay Pride Parades Are OK, VBS Is Not: Why Did ISIS Destroy the Tomb of Jonah?: Cohabitation, rather than marriage...more

Military: Gay Pride Parades Are OK, Vacation Bible School Is Not  ..."We had a lot of disappointed kiddos because of the National Guard being unwilling to allow a Humvee and a few soldiers to spend an hour at a Baptist Church," another Guardsman said. "It makes we wonder what I'm actually fighting for."

But I believe this soldier's observations and analysis truly sum up our nation's current state of affairs.

"I will never understand why it's OK for the military to march in a gay-pride parade but not be allowed to spend an hour talking to children who look up to them (soldiers)," the Guardsman said. "I honestly never thought I'd see the day that this would happen in my hometown."...

Why Did ISIS Destroy the Tomb of Jonah?
On Friday, the media reported that ISIS, the Islamist group that has established a “caliphate” in parts of Syria and Iraq, had destroyed the centuries-old Tomb of Jonah in Mosul, Iraq. Present-day Mosul encompasses the site of the ancient Assyrian capital of Nineveh, where, the Bible teaches, the Prophet Jonah preached. Although this is disputed, a tradition holds that Jonah was buried within the city, on Tell Nebi Yunus, or Hill of the Prophet Jonah.

An Assyrian church stood over the tomb for centuries. After the Muslim conquest, the church became a mosque; the structure that ISIS destroyed last week dated to the 14th century. In addition to the tomb, the mosque once held the supposed remains of the whale that had swallowed Jonah, including one of its teeth. At some point, the tooth disappeared. In 2008, the U.S. Army presented the mosque with a replica.

Last week, ISIS closed the mosque and prevented worshipers from entering. Then it wired the structure with explosives and reduced it to rubble. You can see a video of the explosion here, taken by a Mosul resident, who mutters, in Arabic, “No, no, no. Prophet Jonah is gone. God, these scoundrels.”...

Cohabitation, rather than marriage, is now the more common form of first union   ...Moving in together is becoming less and less likely to lead to having a future together. That’s not to say that all cohabiters are in the same boat regarding their destination. Those who are engaged (or have clear plans to marry) before moving in together are far more likely to eventually marry—but as Guzzo shows, even they are becoming less likely to do so. Related to this, my colleagues and I have shown, in numerous studies, that couples with clear plans to marry before cohabiting, along with those who marry without cohabiting, tend to have happier marriages and lower odds of divorce than those who move in together before having a clearly settled commitment to the future in marriage.v (We believe this is largely because, while cohabiting unions obviously break up often, they are harder to break off than dating relationships because it becomes harder to move out and move on. So some people get stuck in a relationship they would otherwise have not remained in.)...

Federal Court To Atheist Group: The Ground Zero Cross Stays

France ready to offer asylum to Iraqi Christians
France announced on Monday that it will offer asylum to those forced to flee Iraq as the Islamic State (IS) continues to tighten its grip across the country.

Referring to the thousands of Christians and other religious minorities persecuted by extremist Sunnis, the Foreign and Interior ministers, Laurent Fabius and Bernard Cazeneuve, said in a statement that France is "outraged by these abuses that it condemns with the utmost firmness."

"We are ready, if they so desire, to help facilitate asylum on our territory," the statement said...

A Message from Bishop Lawrence at the Close of the Trial

July 27, 2014

Excerpt:
...Then there was the strong cast of witnesses on behalf of the Diocese. Chancellor, Wade Logan, painted for the court a most helpful background of what a diocese is and how it functions both corporately and ecclesially. Canon Lewis reported on the various Diocesan Conventions and canonical changes which brought us to the place of dissociation from TEC. Mr. Robert Kunes testified on behalf of the Trustees of the Diocese. These three witnesses presented the foundation of our diocesan case. They were followed by a representative witness from every congregation participating in the law suit. I could hardly be more proud of them. Some endured quite vigorous cross-examination. It was moving (and at times for me a heavy burden) to hear parish witnesses again and again testify that they “…wanted to stay in communion with the Diocese of South Carolina and Bishop Lawrence.” I wished their fellow parishioners could have seen the courage and clarity with which they represented them.

We also had witnesses in rebuttal to the case made by TEC attorneys. Our diocesan administrator, Nancy Armstrong, combed through centuries of diocesan records to contrast monies that have come into the diocese from TEC and its various related agencies with monies sent by the diocese to TEC. This was in rebuttal to the one-sided presentations given by witnesses from the National Church (including UTO grants which any woman from our DCW can tell you are from contributions from the pews in congregations around the country and not from some National Church budget). In summary the court learned that for every 81 cents given by The Episcopal Church and its various entities to us in South Carolina and our congregations for ministry; the diocese sent $100 to TEC ($100 to 81 cent ratio), therein undermining the defendants’ one-sided presentation of the “facts”. In fifteen minutes of testimony she undermined hours of tedium and an endless parade of documents from so-called experts for the National Church. When Mr. Runyan called to the stand the renowned professor and historian, Dr. Allen Guelzo, author of some 16 books and a foremost historian of the Civil War era and 18th and 19th centuries of American intellectual history we were treated to a breath-taking tour de force disputing the alleged hierarchical assumptions of the national Episcopal Church. Others in this rebuttal stage of the trial were Fr. Robert Lawrence from Camp St. Christopher, the Rev. Greg Kronz, who chaired the Bishop’s search committee and Chancellor Wade Logan who once again punctuated our case. On the last day, I was called finally to the stand.

But I need to say, and can hardly say it enough, undergirding it all—felt at times in palpable ways—the prayers and intercessions from tens of thousands of the saints within the diocese and around the world upholding us in prayer. Some of these intercessors came to the courtroom to pray while testimonies and cross-examinations were taking place. Others of you prayed from home, perhaps on a lunch break, or while driving to and from your work place. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!...

Full letter here

Monday, July 28, 2014

No struggle will come your way apart from God’s purpose...

Weather Vane, White House, Leighton Buzzard
No struggle will come your way apart from God’s purpose, presence, and permission. What encouragement this brings! You are never the victim of nature or the prey of fate. Chance is eliminated. You are more than a weather vane whipped about by the winds of fortune. ...Max Lucado image

Anglican Unscripted Episode 110


Jul 28, 2014
Anglican Unscripted is the only video newscast in the Anglican Church. Every Week Kevin, George, Allan and Peter bring you news and prospective from around the globe. Please donate at http://anglican.tv/donate

Story Index

00:00 Kevin and George discuss this week on AU
02:30 Jeff Walton reports on trouble in the Diocese of VA
07:40 Allan Haley gives the low down on Legal Victories in Illinois and South Carolina

A.S. Haley: Analyzing the Quincy Decision

July 28, 2014

On July 24, 2014 the Illinois Appellate Court for the Fourth District filed its opinion in the appeal taken by the Episcopal Church (USA) from a judgment entered against it by the Hon. Thomas J. Ortbal in September 2013. The three justices on the panel joined in a twenty-page decision that affirmed Judge Ortbal’s judgment in all respects: the (Anglican) Diocese of Quincy properly amended its governing documents so as to secede from ECUSA and cease being a member diocese in 2008; the real and personal property remained with the withdrawing diocesan corporation under Illinois law, and neither was subject to any express or implied trust claims by ECUSA; and ECUSA could not, after the Diocese had completed its vote to withdraw, purport to remove the diocesan trustees or officers and replace them with people from its remnant group that decided to stay with the national Church.

The opinion by the appellate court is a model of clear reasoning, and needs little commentary to be understandable by a lay person. It begins by explaining precisely how the dispute came about, and traces the facts up to the time of the original lawsuit brought by the Anglican Diocese after ECUSA’s attorneys had persuaded the Diocese’s bankers to put a freeze on all of its funds on deposit with them.

Then the opinion summarizes the proceedings leading to, and evidence offered at, the trial before Judge Ortbal in April and May of 2013. The key testimony was mostly received on the question of whether or not ECUSA could be said to be a “hierarchical” church with respect to its member dioceses.

Readers of my posts have known the answer to that question for a long time. ECUSA, the national Church, likes to claim that dioceses do not exist apart from the national Church; but the truth runs the other way: the national Church would be nothing without its member dioceses—and particularly those pre-existing dioceses corresponding to the former Church of England in each of nine former colonies. Representatives from those nine dioceses (referred to at the time not by the word “diocese”, but rather as, e.g., the “Protestant Episcopal Church in the State of Maryland”) met together in Philadelphia and New York over a five-year period beginning in 1785, and eventually agreed to come together in a General Convention (“calling together”) of all of their nine separate churches in a deliberative body that could adopt uniform standards of worship and discipline to be shared among all of them.
the rest

Report: Hamas Used Child Labor to Build Terror Tunnels; Hundreds Killed

by Joel B. Pollak
27 Jul 2014

Hamas killed hundreds of children in the construction of its extensive tunnel network, built partly to carry out attacks on children across the Gaza border in Israel. That report--confirmed by Hamas itself--emerged in 2012, not from the Israeli government, but the sympathetic Journal of Palestine Studies, in an article that otherwise celebrated the secret tunnel system as a symbol of Palestinian resistance to the Israeli "siege" of the Gaza Strip.

The article, "Gaza's Tunnel Phenomenon: The Unintended Dynamics of Israel's Siege," was published in the Summer 2012 edition of the Journal by Nicholas Pelham, who writes for the Economist and the New York Review of Books, according to his bio. It is receiving new attention thanks to Myer Freimann of Tablet, an online journal of Jewish affairs, whose post about Hamas's use of child labor has gone viral in social media... the rest

Bp. Julian Dobbs: A Haunting Peace

July 27, 2014

Excerpt:
...As I paused there at the site, the experience was almost haunting. A callery pear tree which was discovered at Ground Zero severely damaged, with snapped roots and burned and broken branches, has been nursed back to life and stands as a living reminder of resilience and survival.

The 16 acre site in Manhattan attempts to bring peace to the horrific events of September 11, 2001. However, there is no peace for thousands of Christians in Syria and Iraq who suffer today at the hands of Islamic terrorists determined to eliminate Christianity and reestablish an Islamic caliphate. The agenda of ISIS is the agenda of the 911 terrorists – covert to Islam, pay the special Jizya tax or die.

The last remaining Christians of Mosul in Iraq have been running for their lives after the Islamist militants who control the Iraqi city threatened to kill them if they did not convert to Islam or pay the Jizya tax. The ultimatum was issued giving Christians until noon on Saturday (July 19) either to comply or leave Mosul without taking any of their possessions with them.

Those fleeing were robbed at checkpoints set up by ISIS; the militants stole the Christians’ cars, money, food, jewellery, mobile phones and anything else they were carrying, even medicines. Over 85 families reported having all their possessions taken; hundreds of Christians had to walk over 40 miles to reach safety after ISIS stole their cars, arriving at Tel Afar exhausted and dehydrated.

A colleague of mine in Iraq wrote in an email last week describing the situation faced by Christians. In one large Christian area, ISIS has demanded that the water supply be turned off in an attempt to cause the Christian residents to flee for their lives... the rest image

Patriarch decries 'mass cleansing' of Mosul Christians

Mosul's Christians ask, 'Where is the conscience of the world?'

'They are savages,' say Christians forced to flee Mosul by Isis

Anglican Vicar: End of Christianity in Iraq Is 'Very Near'


by Mary Chastain
26 Jul 2014

Andrew White, the vicar of the only Anglican church in Iraq, told BBC Radio 4 that Christianity is coming to an end in the Middle Eastern country. The Islamic State, formerly known as ISIS, is forcing Christians out of towns and into isolation.

“Things are so desperate, our people are disappearing,” he said. “We have had people massacred, their heads chopped off. The Christians are in grave danger. There are literally Christians living in the desert and on the street. They have nowhere to go.”

"Are we seeing the end of Christianity?” he continued. “We are committed come what may, we will keep going to the end, but it looks as though the end could be very near."

ISIS told Christians in Mosul, home to one of the largest Christian communities in the world, to convert to Islam, pay a protection tax, or die. The majority chose to leave, and for the first time in over 2,000 years, there are no Christians in Mosul. ISIS even marked Christian homes with an "N" for Nazarene.

"There is not a single Christian family left in Mosul," said Bashar Nasih Behnam, who left with his two children. "The last one was a disabled Christian woman. She stayed because she could not get out. They came to her and said you have to get out and if you don't we will cut off your head with a sword. That was the last family."... the rest image

Archbishop Dr. John Sentamu publishes prayers for Mosul
  The Archbishop of York, Dr. John Sentamu, has today published three prayers highlighting the worsening situation in Iraq where Christians and Muslims are being killed by ISIS forces...

Stamp Them Out’: On Josh Barro and the New Sexual Moralism

NRO
By Andrew Walker and Owen Strachan
July 24, 2014

Last night, New York Times reporter Josh Barro tweeted out a disturbing message: “Anti-LGBT attitudes are terrible for people in all sorts of communities. They linger and oppress, and we need to stamp them out, ruthlessly.”

This is rather shocking. Barro is no angry blogger writing manifestos in his basement. He is a respected reporter from a prestigious newspaper that prides itself on equanimity in the face of heated debate. Yet he seems, by any reasonable measure, to be fomenting a campaign to rout out all dissenters from the sexual revolution. Erick Erickson wrote a brief response to Barro’s tweet, to which Barro replied that he thinks that “we should make anti-LGBT views shameful like segregation. Not saying we should off people.”

Okay. But “stamp out,” intensified by the qualifier “ruthlessly,” means something quite a bit stronger than inviting your interlocutor to tea and crumpets to discuss differences.

Barro’s sexual fundamentalism wants any dissent marginalized and he’s not reluctant to admit that. This attitude, which is emblematic of the increasing intolerance in many sectors of culture towards those with traditional beliefs about sexuality, penalizes citizens for their beliefs. What we see playing out, once more, is that for liberalism to take root, it must take root by authoritarian impulse where the lies of the sexual revolution, to be cemented, must be enforced through acts of social and legal coercion... the rest
In these tweets, Barro has shared his honest opinion: that the New Sexual Moralism will tolerate no dissent. We commend him, gravely, for his honesty. The logic of this sentiment leads to exactly one conclusion: When it comes to promoting gay rights, all must come to heel. There will be no debate. There will be no room for disagreement. To disagree, in fact, is to “linger and oppress” and cannot be allowed.