Tuesday, November 24, 2015

God's love is big enough to touch any life...

God's love is big enough to touch any life, to make light out of any darkness. Jesus came that we might have life, so that no more would we have to die in depression, anger or pain. He loved people back to life. He would go anywhere, talk to anyone. And wherever He went, He would stop for the one-- the forgotten one, the one who was rejected, outcast, sick, even stone dead. Even a thief who was dying for his crimes on the cross next to Him. In the Kingdom of God's love there is no sinner who cannot come home. ...Heidi Baker image

The Vicar of Baghdad: 'I've looked through the Quran trying to find forgiveness... there isn’t any.'

Isis bombs have exiled Canon Andrew White to Hampshire, but he's itching to get back to the Middle East
Mary Wakefield
21 November 2015

Canon Andrew White, the vicar of Baghdad, is not, in person, at all as I’d imagined him. His memoir, about life as first a medic, then a cleric, is chock-a-block with famous friends. Pope John Paul II was a pal, the Grand Ayatollah of Baghdad, General David Petraeus. ‘Oh, Andrew knows everyone,’ I was told when I asked anyone about him, and I’m afraid my heart hardened. I arrived in the rain at his house in Liphook, Hampshire, preparing myself for a vain man, full of his own derring-do.

More fool me. Canon White is instantly, unusually lovable. He greets me wearing a sweatshirt with the caption ‘Real men become vicars’. ‘Look!’ he says delightedly. ‘Look at my hoodie!’ We talk for close to two hours about Islam, Isis and evil, and his work as a mediator between the various hate-filled factions of the Middle East. By the time I leave it occurs to me that Canon Andrew White is something of a saint.

It’s not that he’s perfect, but that he’s guileless. He’s pure of heart in the way few people over five ever are. It makes sense that he’s spent two decades as a peace-maker, negotiating with tyrants and psychopaths, because he’s utterly disarming.

We sit in his study, which is arranged like a front room in the Middle East: seats around the walls. And on most of the seats, perched or lounging, is a young person, all employed by White’s foundation (for relief and reconciliation in the Middle East). Throughout our interview they fuss over White, organise him, join in the conversation, which is interrupted from time to time by phone calls from a man called Des who has been given the job of finding for the Canon the perfect red suit-lining...

the rest of the interview-excellent!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Cinemas ban Church of England Lord's Prayer ad; Obamacare Endures the Death of a Thousand Facts...more

Cinemas ban Church of England Lord's Prayer ad
Three of the UK's leading cinema chains are refusing to screen a Church of England advert which features the Lord’s Prayer.

The Digital Cinema Media agency, which handles adverts for Odeon, Cineworld and Vue cinemas, has decided that the ad could offend people.

Hollywood star Liam Neeson provides the “voice of God” in the minute-long ad, which received clearance from the British Board of Film Classification and the Cinema Advertising Authority...

Seven reasons to ban the Lord's Prayer  ...There are only 63 words in the Lord’s Prayer.

 It takes less than a minute to say them. Yet these words shape our identity, give purpose to our lives, check our greed, remind us of our imperfections, offer a way of reconciliation, build resilience in our spirits and call us to live to the glory of our creator.

No wonder they have been banned in the boardrooms of consumer culture.

Anne Kennedy: Line by Line the Preacher Preaches

Obamacare Endures the Death of a Thousand Facts ... problem is that “reform” distorts the market by burying both insurers and the insured beneath a mountain of mandates. Probably the worst is Obamacare’s benefit mandate. Most health plans must now include 10 “minimum essential” benefits—whether customers want them or not. This mandate has inevitably caused the cost of providing coverage to skyrocket. The only way a company like UnitedHealth can keep premiums under some modicum of control is to offer plans with very high deductibles. Meanwhile, the law’s individual mandate has utterly failed as an incentive for healthy individuals to purchase insurance.

This has led to a “lose-lose” situation for insurers and for patients. In an article titled, “Many Say High Deductibles Make Their Health Law Insurance All but Useless,” the New York Times reports, “In many states, more than half the plans offered for sale through HealthCare.gov, the federal online marketplace, have a deductible of $3,000 or more.” In 2016, the penalty for failing to buy insurance is $695 or 2.5 percent of one’s household income. This means that for most individuals, particularly the young and healthy, the penalty will be considerably less than the out-of-pocket cost required by most health insurance plans...

 ObamaCare's imploding even without repeal “We can’t really subsidize a marketplace that doesn’t appear at the moment to be sustaining itself.”

Half Of People Who Went To College In The Recession Haven’t Graduated  ...The low graduation rate shouldn’t come as a big surprise. The recession drove people to attend college who wouldn’t have gone otherwise and who were likely less prepared than other students. Many of them ended up in worse shape than if they hadn’t gone to college in the first place: burdened with thousands of dollars in student debt, but without a degree to show for it...

Australian Bishops Face Lawsuit for Distributing Traditional Marriage Booklet ...This is what “Don’t Mess with Marriage” said about traditional marriages: “Their physical, spiritual, psychological and sexual differences show they are meant for each other, their union makes them whole, and through their union ‘in one flesh,’ they together beget children who are ‘flesh of their flesh.’”
The distribution of “Don’t Mess with Marriage” outraged Rodney Croome, the leader of Australia’s gay marriage political movement. Croome claimed that the bishops had turned the children into “couriers of prejudice” by giving them copies of the booklet...

File:Snowflake Detail.jpg
The world is full of beautiful geometry.
It’s something we start teaching our youngest children. This daisy is a circle. This dandelion is a sphere. And we repeat it all the way through high school: Honeybees build their hives in hexagons. Solutions to quadratic equations can be graphed as parabolas. Rates of change are found in the slope of lines tangent to a curve.
“God has established nothing without geometrical beauty,” astronomer Johannes Kepler wrote. Before him, planetary orbits were thought to be perfect circles. He discovered that they weren’t—but that they were in fact ellipses, still part of the same wonderful family known as Euclidean geometry, named for the Greek mathematician who wrote Elements around the year 300 B.C.
Kepler, Newton, Leibniz, Descartes, and others looked at the world and found time and time again that the Euclidean model accurately describes all kinds of shapes and events in nature...