Saturday, November 07, 2015

November rose

Raymond took this lovely photo of one of the last roses to bloom in the garden this season. Next spring seems so far away!  -PD

Train up a child...


Oct 14, 2007
2 year-old girl singing the Lord's Prayer.



Here she is in 2014

Friday, November 06, 2015

The Transgender Movement and Government Overreach: Why it Matters...more

The Transgender Movement and Government Overreach: Why it Matters This week, disturbing news out of Palatine, IL, hit national headlines. According to a report from The New York Times, this Chicago suburb’s school district is facing scrutiny by the federal government’s Department of Education for not allowing a self-identified transgender female to have free use of female locker rooms. For those not familiar with this terminology, here’s what’s happening: a biological male, who subjectively identifies as a female, desires unrestricted access to female locker rooms.

While the high school in question offered many accommodations to the student, the government insists that the school is still in violation of federal policy. The school asked that the male student change behind a privacy curtain while in a female locker room in order to safeguard female students who were uncomfortable changing around a biological male, or seeing the male student nude. This very accommodating proposal was not sufficient by government standards. By not allowing the student unrestricted access to the female locker room, the federal government alleges that the school is in violation of federal non-discrimination laws pertaining to sex discrimination. In response, the government is threatening to legally sanction the school district, which could result in the loss of millions of dollars of federal funding.

The events out of Palatine are deeply, deeply troubling from a Christian worldview. There is great cause for concern and vigilance...

Obama Administration Threatens School Funding in War on Gender   We have been told that anti-transgender nutjobs won the day in Houston by running a fear mongering campaign that distorted the truth. We were told that a commercial showing a man in a girl's bathroom was a misleading scare tactic. These accusations have been promoted as truth in much of the mainstream media coverage. However, receiving significantly less coverage is the fact that the Obama administration is pushing for a high school boy (who says he's a girl but still reportedly has all the boy parts) to shower and change in the same locker room as the girls. In fact, the Obama administration is so vehement that this must happen that they are actually threatening pulling federal funding from a school district in Illinois for refusing...


Nov 5, 2015

Taurid Meteor Shower - Nov 5 to Nov 12

Larry Schwimmer
Updated: 11/05/2015

November brings an amazing astronomic spectacle: Halloween Fireballs blazing through the skies!

Throughout much of November, the Earth will be covered by a swarm of unusually large space particles that will generate some amazingly, eye-catching fireball meteors. According to Joe Rao, space watcher, the Taurid meteors, sometimes called "Halloween fireballs," (fireballs are extremely bright meteors) will be radiating from the direction of the constellation Taurus.

This astronomic event will create one of this year's longest meteor showers, with at least a couple of shooting stars per hour from now until November 30. The Taurids will be most active during the one-week time frame starting November 5 through November 12.

Rao explains more about this amazing event: "During peak times, about a dozen or so meteors may be seen per hour by an observer with clear, dark skies. These meteors are often yellowish-orange and, as meteors go, appear to move rather slowly." the rest


Thursday, November 05, 2015

The sexual revolution and society's descent into darkness; Potty Mouthed Kids Trash Trump...more

Obama Administration Paid for Research Using Intact Human Brains From Aborted Babies Thousands of tax dollars were used to pay for intact aborted babies’ brains used in research at the University of Connecticut, the Washington Free Beacon reported today.

Under the Obama Administration, researchers bought up to two fetal brains per month using taxpayer dollars through the National Institutes of Health, according to documents the news website obtained through a public records request...

The Long Shadow: The sexual revolution and society's descent into darkness less than a generation the Christian moral vision - that human beings flourish when sexual interests are boundaried in life-long covenant between a man and a woman – has seen a profound loss of cultural power. Across Western Europe, those who hold to traditional Christian sexual ethics not only find themselves on the wrong side of popular opinion, but allegedly on the “wrong side of history” too. It is becoming increasingly difficult for Christians with conservative views on sexual ethics to navigate the relationship between private and public spheres of faith.

It is not my purpose, however, to address pressing issues of rights legislation, reasonable accommodation and freedom of religion here. Instead, I want to take a step back to address the impact of the sexual revolution on evangelicalism itself. The reality is that traditional biblical ethics have not only lost cultural power in wider society, but are now seriously weakened within evangelical communities too.

The sociologist Peter Berger argued that unless “cognitive minorities” (those who hold views dissonant with wider society) take active steps to sustain their internal plausibility structures (the ideas and hidden social interactions that support their particular way of life), they are destined to implode. This, I believe, is what is happening in many areas of modern evangelicalism.

Evangelical leaders seem poorly equipped to deal with the complex ethical, biological and social questions inherent in conversations about marriage and human sexuality. Despite their tradition of “Christian mind”, with some notable exceptions, they have displayed little serious academic engagement with these areas...

Enthusiastic Episcopalians Install Their New Leader ...Concerns about syncretism in the U.S.-based church (showcased in a 2006 Time magazine interview in which Jefferts Schori claimed that saying Jesus Christ was the only way to salvation was “to put God in an awfully small box”) also remain fresh. Those concerns won’t be disappearing anytime soon: Sunday’s ceremony included an interfaith prayer led by an official from the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). Mohamed Elsanousi, who holds a Bachelor’s degree in Shariah from the International Islamic University in Pakistan, prayed, “Help us to understand what You have told us in Your Holy Quran” at the ceremony, with the congregation affirming “amen” at the conclusion of the prayer. Nevermind that Christians do not regard the Quran as Holy Scripture, or that Muslims do not consider Jesus Christ the son of God, or even acknowledge his death on the cross. These were all deemed as trivialities to sweep aside in favor of interfaith hand-holding...

Houston Rejects Special LGBT Privileges By Huge Margin  
One local Houston election item from yesterday received national attention, the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, or HERO to its supporters. Early results with more than two-thirds of precincts in showed it losing, 62 to 38 percent, despite having passed the City Council 11-6.

HERO did not grant any rights. It added an avenue of recourse for discrimination. Anyone in a protected class who thinks they are being discriminated against can sue in federal court. HERO added an option to complain to the City of Houston. File a complaint and someone would investigate, like calling about pot holes. This was supposed to be more effective than a suit, though goodness knows Houston officials haven’t done a great job responding to pothole complaints.

When HERO passed City Council in May 2014, many Houstonians worried it would be another selectively enforced regulation. Again, using the pothole comparison, neighborhoods in preferred parts of town get street repair, while streets in other areas drive like you are on the moon. (This is Houston. We like lunar analogies.) Similarly, we worried that if you ran a not-preferred business, HERO might cause you to find your business subject to discrimination investigations and fines. Particularly easy would be sting operations, such as transgender males claiming discrimination if an establishment did not allow them to use women’s restrooms.

The ordinance originally contained specific language about this scenario, but that was dropped to assure the City Council would pass it. Still, the bathroom example was particularly vivid and believable with all the national news and sensational stories concerning gender issues...

Feds Give School One Month to Open Girls' Locker Room to Transgender Student

Islamic State behind Russia plane crash: Britain  British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Thursday it was increasingly likely that a bomb brought down a Russian airliner over Egypt with the loss of 224 lives, setting him at odds with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Britain, Ireland, Germany and the Netherlands have suspended flights to and from Sharm al-Sheikh, leaving thousands of European tourists stranded in the Red Sea resort where the doomed airliner originated.

Egypt, which depends on tourism as a crucial source of revenue, said the decision to suspend flights was unjustified and should be reversed at once. It said there was no evidence a bomb was to blame...

Video: Potty Mouthed Kids Trash Trump
(I listened to the first 10 seconds with disgust. Read the comments and you'll see how well this is (not) working. -PD)

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

J. I. Packer: In His Own Words


J. I. Packer: In His Own Words from Crossway on Vimeo.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 204


Nov 3, 2015

Anglican Unscripted is the only video newscast in the Anglican Church. Each Episode Kevin, George, Allan and Peter bring you news and prospective from around the globe. Please Donate - http://anglicanink.com/donate

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

U.S. State Department Turns Its Back on Syrian Christians; Leaving children to their own [mobile] devices...more

The State Department Turns Its Back on Syrian Christians and Other Non-Muslim Refugees   Over the past five years of Syria’s civil war, the United States has admitted a grand total of 53 Syrian Christian refugees, a lone Yazidi, and fewer than ten Druze, Bahá’ís, and Zoroastrians combined. That so few of the Syrian refugees coming here are non-Muslim minorities is due to American reliance on a United Nations refugee-resettlement program that disproportionately excludes them. Past absolute totals of Syrian refugees to the U.S. under this program were small, but as the Obama administration now ramps up refugee quotas by tens of thousands, it would be unconscionable to continue with a process that has consistently forsaken some of the most defenseless and egregiously persecuted of those fleeing Syria.

The gross underrepresentation of the non-Muslim communities in the numbers of Syrian refugees into the U.S. is reflected year after year in the State Department’s public records. They show, for example, that while Syria’s largest non-Muslim group — Christians of the various Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant traditions — constituted 10 percent of Syria’s population before the war, they are only 2.6 percent of the 2,003 Syrian refugees that the United States has accepted since then...
 
Spain's Christians Brace for Syrian Refugees  As a first step in addressing Europe's refugee crisis, European Union (EU) leaders on Sept. 22 assigned 15,000 mainly Syrian refugees to Spain, with still greater batches to follow in subsequent years. Some in Spain fear the wave of Syrian refugees will bring more Muslim influence to a country where radical Islam has made inroads, but one Spanish ministry is eagerly welcoming them.
 
The refugees are Spain's share of an initial distribution of 120,000 refugees across Europe. Having established churches in the southern province of Andalusia and in Morocco, which lies nearly nine miles from Spain's southernmost point across the Strait of Gibraltar, the ministry director sees the EU plan as an unprecedented opportunity. In Ceuta, a Spanish enclave on Morocco's northern tip, he already has substantial experience with Syrian refugees; he's been proclaiming Christ to them for three years. 
 
"Our experience is that they come to the Lord fast," said the director, identified only as Antonio for security reasons. "They say, 'We are here because Islam [jihadists such as the Islamic State] put us here and broke our family and broke our country,' and they open very fast. There are house churches among Syrians." ...

Michael Nazir-Ali: Compassion To Refugees, Not Capitulation To Islamic State The human tide of refugees, economic migrants, young men fleeing conscription and others who have arrived on Europe’s shores shows no sign of receding. As always, there are heart-rending stories of why people have undertaken hazardous journeys by land and sea. The human toll in terms of suffering and loss of life is enormous. There is also the seamier side of this huge migration, with traffickers making fortunes out of human misery.

How then should we respond to this new reality on our doorsteps? The first and immediate thing is to say is that we must not fail in compassion. The Bible tells us not only to love our neighbours as ourselves but also strangers because the people of Israel were once strangers in Egypt until they were liberated by God (Lev 19:33-34). Jesus himself reaffirms this teaching and makes it his own (Mark 12:29-31 and parallels). The rest of the New Testament also teaches that this is a fundamental Christian duty (e.g. Rom 13:8-10).

These values lie behind the warm reception which the refugees and migrants have received in some European countries. It is what has motivated the churches and Christian volunteers to help with food, shelter, clothing and medical provision for those arriving on their borders. Such warm humanitarianism cannot and should not be belittled. Nor should a determination to see that history is not repeated in turning people away who may be in real danger in their own or in neighbouring countries...

Spiritual Suicide: When European Churches Sell Their Souls to Islam  At a time when Christians in the Middle East are being tortured, beheaded, and crucified rather than denying Jesus, Christians in Europe – I should say so-called Christians – are renouncing the Great Commission and removing the cross (literally) to make peace with Muslims.

What kind of madness is this?

Last month, in Sweden, the Bishop of Stockholm “proposed a church in her diocese remove all signs of the cross and put down markings showing the direction to Mecca for the benefit of Muslim worshippers.”

As reported on Breitbart.com, “Calling Muslim guests to the church ‘angels’, the Bishop later took to her official blog to explain that removing Christian symbols from the church and preparing the building for Muslim prayer doesn’t make a priest any less a defender of the faith. Rather, to do any less would make one ‘stingy towards people of other faiths’.”...

DHS Memo: Obama Admin Scheming to Defy Judge’s Executive Amnesty Injunction   ...A newly leaked internal DHS memorandum produced for an off-the-record agency conclave reveals that the Obama administration is actively planning to circumvent a federal court injunction that suspended part of last November’s deferral-based amnesty initiative. The document, apparently prepared as follow-up from a DHS “Regulations Retreat” last summer, appears sure to re-ignite concerns in Congress as well as federal judges in the Fifth Circuit...

Officials Won't Rule Out ISIS Involvement in Russian Plane Crash U.S. officials refused to rule out that ISIS was responsible for bringing down the Metrojet flight in Egypt this weekend, citing a tweet from the terror group that claimed responsibility for the deadly crash.

"It’s unlikely, but I wouldn’t rule it out," U.S. National Intelligence Director James Clapper said when asked whether ISIS had the ability to shoot down an airliner. "We don’t have any direct evidence of any terrorist involvement, yet," Clapper said at the Defense One Summit in Washington, D.C."...

 Heart risk in sweet drinks: How just TWO glasses a day can be DEADLY  ...Experts say that a couple of 200ml servings – roughly the equivalent to a standard bottle of pop – raises the risk by 23 per cent.

Sweetened soft drinks are already linked to killer conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

But for the first time scientists have made an association between the beverages and heart failure...

Many Children Under 5 Are Left to Their Mobile Devices, Survey Finds  ...According to the parents, nearly half of the children younger than 1 used a mobile device daily to play games, watch videos or use apps. Most 2-year-olds used a tablet or smartphone daily.

The American Academy of Pediatrics had recommended total screen abstinence for children younger than 2, but lately has softened its stance. It now advises setting time limits, prioritizing what it calls unplugged play and not using devices as pacifiers to calm toddlers.

A lack of parental supervision is more worrisome than the use of mobile devices by the very young, experts said.

In this sample, “a lot of media time is reportedly alone,” said Dr. Dimitri A. Christakis, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Washington. “It can’t be overstated: Children need laps more than apps.”...

Monday, November 02, 2015

Hillary Supporters Endorse SHARIA LAW in AMERICA


Nov 2, 2015

Hillary Clinton supporters in California mindlessly agree with anything and everything Hillary supposedly says. In an experiment, media analyst Mark Dice tells Hillary fans that one of her primary campaign promises is to implement Sharia Law in America.

Canon Andrew White: 'Vicar of Baghdad' on leading a church in Iraq and being in the crosshairs of Isis

Canon Andrew White has a remarkable faith in human nature, but in the face of so much cruelty, even he believes a line has been crossed

They were coming for him and his people. Friends were being killed or fleeing for their lives. So Andrew White did what he always does when faced with an enemy. “I invited the leaders of Isis [Islamic State] for dinner. I am a great believer in that. I have asked some of the worst people ever to eat with me.”

This extraordinarily self-confident priest is best known as the vicar of Baghdad, leader of a church in the chaos outside the protected Green Zone. He made his offer last year as the terrorist forces threatened to take the city. Did he get a reply?

“Isis said, ‘You can invite us to dinner, but we’ll chop your head off.’ So I didn’t invite them again!”
And he roars with laughter, despite believing that Islamic State has put a huge price on his head, apparently willing to pay $157m (£100m) to anyone who can kill this harmless-looking eccentric.

Canon White was a doctor before he became a priest and could be one still, in his colourful bow-tie and double-breasted blazer with a pocket square spilling silk. But appearances are deceptive.

For the last two decades, he has worked as a mediator in some of the deadliest disputes on Earth, in Israel and Palestine, Iraq and Nigeria. He has sat down to eat with terrorists, extremists, warlords and the sons of Saddam Hussein, with presidents and prime ministers.  the rest image

Russian plane that crashed in Egypt 'broke up in the air'; National debt nearly doubles during Obama presidency...more

Russian plane that crashed in Egypt 'broke up in the air'  A Russian airliner that crashed in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula broke up in mid-air, an official of a Moscow-based aviation agency said on Sunday after visiting the disaster site, but stressed it was too early to draw conclusions from this.

Russian authorities also ordered Kogalymavia airline, operator of the Airbus A321 which came down on Saturday killing all 224 people on board, not to fly its jets of the same model until the causes of the crash are known...

$20 trillion man: National debt nearly doubles during Obama presidency ...“We will be raising the debt ceiling in an unlimited fashion,” said Sen. Rand Paul, a Kentucky Republican who tried to filibuster the budget deal before the Senate approved it in the wee hours of Friday. “We will be giving President Obama a free pass to borrow as much money as he can borrow in the last year of his office. No limit, no dollar limit. Here you go, President Obama. Spend what you want.”...

Leaked Photos Spell Bad News for Michelle Obama school lunch plan

Sweden: Sex Change for Children
...Young Swedes are not allowed to vote until they are 18, and they cannot buy alcohol until they are 20, but plans are now being made to allow children as young as 12 years old to apply to change their legal gender. The surgery would allow children to be identified on all legal documents, ID cards and passports as belonging to a gender different from the one they were born with. In addition, according to an official reports by the Swedish government, the process of obtaining permission to have the operation should be swift...

Feminism’s Harmful Impact on Millennial Families ...It is always challenging to host a discussion on feminism, because the term itself has become so muddled few can agree on the word’s definition. Some pro-family women are even making efforts to reclaim the term, a movement about which I hold some concerns. But that is a discussion for another time. Still, I must acknowledge groups like Feminists for Life and Big Ocean, a group of self-proclaimed feminist working to dismantle the stigma around family. So let me be very clear, that for purposes of my discussion, when I mention feminism I am specifically referring to either second-wave radical feminism birthed out of the 1960s or its protégé third-wave feminism.

According to Phyllis Schlafly, longtime pro-life activist, lawyer and mother of six, author of 20 books, and a woman obviously not limited by marriage or motherhood – noted in her book, The Flipside of Feminism, quote, “While people associate feminism within the 1960s revolution, since that is when feminism began, feminism and feminists didn’t disappear just because they’re no longer marching in the streets.” Schlafly explained, “They simply chucked the loud protests and morphed into the fabric of society.”...

God as She is yet another feminist assault on masculinity ...It’s remarkable how long it took the church to realise that all those masculine pronouns used in the Scriptures to refer to God – He and Him – are merely arbitrary, and really the biblical writers could have gone either way with the Hes and Shes, Hims and Hers. What is all the more staggering is that you would have thought that some of the giants of church history – Ignatius, Polycarp, Origen, Athanasius, Tertullian, Augustine, Luther, Calvin, for instance – at least one of them would have picked up on it. But oddly enough we had to wait for centuries to pass, until the after the feminist revolution in fact, before the church actually came to see what had been staring it in the face all along.
As for all that “Our Father” business and those funny notions that Jesus seemed to have that “I and my Father not “I and my Mother” are one, well once again we have the feminist giants of the faith in the late 20th / early 21st century to thank for correcting His false notions and setting Him straight. I mean He was only the eternal Son of God. What would He know about it.

Rachel Treweek, Bishop of Gloucester and newly seated in the House of Lords, is one of the latest to come along and correct the errors of 2,000 years of church history, not to mention the teachings of the entire Old and New Testaments (By the way, House of Lords? Do I hear the beginnings of a campaign to correct this glaring anachronism? House of Gender-Neutral Peers anyone?). In an interview with the Observer last weekend she (I assume I’m allowed to assign a feminine pronoun for her) made the following observations:

While acknowledging that many Anglicans would profoundly disagree, Treweek said the Church of England should use both male and female pronouns when referring to God. She personally prefers to say neither “he” nor “she”, but “God”. “Sometimes I lapse, but I try not to,” the bishop told the Observer. “God is not to be seen as male. God is God.”

Let me begin by saying that she is partially correct, but at the same time very, very wrong. When she says that “God is not to be seen as male,” she is absolutely right. God is a Spirit and therefore He is no more “male” than he is “female”. However, when she infers from this that the Church of England should use both masculine and feminine pronouns when referring to God, she moves deftly from truth to patent falsehood. The problem is that the Scriptures always use masculine pronouns when referring to God, and they always use the masculine form when referring to the titles of God. Always and without exception. Period...

The Parenting Problems of Age Segregation
  It has been more than a half-century since James Coleman and his team surveyed students in ten high schools to determine their values and interests and attitudes toward learning. The conclusion was that a new social formation was upon us: the adolescent society. That was the title of the book summarizing the findings, with the subtitle “The Social Life of the Teenager and Its Impact on Education.”

When questioned about what they like to do and what they care about, the kids made it quite clear that their minds and desires were absorbed in a world all their own. They had their own music and movies, speech and dress, heroes and role models, hangouts and activities, the whole amounting to an adolescent subculture forbidden to grownups. The ambitions were similarly social. Being good-looking, well-liked, active, and athletic counted more than being smart and hard-working. That’s what their peers valued, and that’s what they answered to.

Where and how did this trend originate? Curiously, though their attitudes weren’t oriented toward school, school was, in fact, the cause of the adolescent society. Over the course of the twentieth century, adolescents were staying in school longer and longer. Early in the 1900s, only one out of ten American teens finished high school. Most of them left the classroom in fourth to eighth grade and went to work, passing their teen years under the supervision of adults and spending limited time with peers. For the average 15 year old, there was no such thing as a “social life.”

By 1950, though, most of them stayed through twelfth grade. High school attendance exploded. For seven hours a day (not including after-school activities), five days a week, 185 days a year, teenagers were packed into tight quarters by the hundreds, moving from room to room, eating lunch together, hanging out in locker rooms...