Thursday, June 30, 2011

Devotional: Fear not the storm...

I bear my witness that the worst days I have ever had have turned out to be my best days. And when God has seemed most cruel to me, he has then been most kind. If there is anything in this world for which I would bless him more than for anything else, it is for pain and affliction. I am sure that in these things the richest, tenderest love has been manifested to me. Our Father's wagons rumble most heavily when they are bringing us the richest freight of the bullion of his grace. Love letters from heaven are often sent in black-edged envelopes. The cloud that is black with horror is big with mercy. Fear not the storm. It brings healing in its wings, and when Jesus is with you in the vessel, the tempest only hastens the ship to its desired haven. ...CH Spurgeon image

UK Chief Rabbi: Equality laws leading to new Mayflower exodus

New equality laws are forcing religious people to flee the country because they are being denied the freedom to live in accordance with their beliefs, the Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, has warned.By Tim Ross, Religious Affairs Editor
30 Jun 2011
The Orthodox Jewish leader claimed that anti-discrimination policies had fuelled an “erosion of religious liberty" in Britain that was leading to a new “Mayflower”, a reference to the flight of the persecuted Pilgrim Fathers to America in the 17th century.

His comments follow growing alarm from leading religious figures over the increasing influence of equality laws. The former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, has called on the Prime Minister to review equality legislation amid concerns that religious freedoms and Britain’s Christian heritage are under threat.

Speaking to the House of Commons public administration select committee, Lord Sacks said there was "no doubt'' numbers of religious believers in Britain were "extraordinarily'' low.
He continued: “I share a real concern that the attempt to impose the current prevailing template of equality and discrimination on religious organisations is an erosion of religious liberty. the rest

Top gay blog laments: ‘WE ALWAYS LOSE’ when voters decide on marriage

by Kathleen Gilbert
Wed Jun 29, 2011

 ( - A prominent online gay publication has admitted the existence of a little-known but persistent obstacle to legalizing same-sex “marriage”: American voters.

A post on the Queerty blog Monday concluded that President Obama’s silence on gay “marriage” results from a recognition that most American voters oppose it.

“Even LGBT organizers agree that they’d rather pass marriage equality by legislature than at the ballot because at the ballot WE ALWAYS LOSE,” wrote Queerty’s Daniel Villarreal.

“People who oppose the ballot also like saying that if America voted on interracial marriage in the 60s, that still might be illegal too. But is that really our only defense against the ballot argument?” he continued. “If so, it’s no wonder that Obama hasn’t articulated a reason to support marriage that doesn’t fly in the face of the democratic process that had denied us our rights.” the rest

Not Archbishop Dolan's Finest Hour

June 29, 2011
By Rod Dreher

It is not terribly surprising that gay marriage advocates won a decisive legislative victory in New York state last week. After all, New York is one of the nation's most socially liberal states, and could be expected to be on the vanguard of the steadily rising trend toward legalizing same-sex marriage. What is startling, at least in theory, is that they triumphed without much of a fight from the Roman Catholic Church.

The New York Times called the church's passivity "befuddling to gay-rights advocates." New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan didn't travel to the state capitol to lobby against the bill, but rather made his strongest statement against it on a call-in radio program. In 2009, after assuming the office once held by the politically potent Cardinals Francis Spellman and John O'Connor, Dolan told reporters that he wouldn't "shy away" from the gay marriage battle. But in the end, Dolan, who is also president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, did little more than run the flag of Catholic teaching up the familiar flagpole. His heart clearly wasn't in the fight.

The archbishop was undoubtedly correct to describe the pro-gay forces as "very strong" and "well-financed" -- but what is the Archdiocese of New York, chopped liver? Though greatly diminished in power from the glory days of Cardinal Spellman, there is no bully pulpit like the one Dolan has. Given the razor-thin margin of victory for the pro-gay side, it's entirely possible, even likely, that a fully engaged Archbishop Dolan could have won this round for his side. the rest

ENS: Disciplinary Board for Bishops formed for new Title IV canons


 An 18-member Disciplinary Board for Bishops has been established as required by the revised version of the Episcopal Church's canons on clergy discipline, which go into effect July 1.
The board consists of 10 bishops, four clergy and four lay members. Eight of the bishops were elected by the House of Bishops at the group's March meeting; two were later appointed by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori when vacancies occurred, according to a press release from the church's Office of Public Affairs. 

The clergy and lay members were appointed by President of the House of Deputies Bonnie Anderson for an interim basis until the House of Deputies can elect regular members at the next meeting of General Convention in 2012.

The members and their dioceses are:

Bishop Ian T. Douglas of Connecticut; Victor Feliberty-Ruberte of Puerto Rico; Bishop Robert Fitzpatrick of Hawaii; Suffragan Bishop Dena Harrison of Texas; Christopher Hayes of California; Retired Bishop Dorsey Henderson of Upper South Carolina; Bishop Herman Hollerith of Southern Virginia; Bishop J. Scott Mayer of Northwest Texas; the Rev. Marjorie Menaul of Central Pennsylvania; Josephine Powell of Michigan; the Rev. Jesus Reyes of El Camino Real; Diane Sammons of Newark; Bishop Thomas Shaw of Massachusetts; the Rev. Canon Angela Shepherd of Maryland; Bishop Prince Singh of Rochester; the Rev. Robert Two Bulls Jr. of Los Angeles; Bishop James Waggoner of Spokane and Bishop Catherine Waynick of Indianapolis.

The board is called for in Canon IV: 17: 3, which says in part that the members will have "original jurisdiction over matters of discipline of bishops" and will "hear bishops' appeals from imposition of restrictions on ministry or placement on administrative leave."  the rest

Lawsuit charges US Presiding Bishop knowingly ordained a paedophile

June 29, 2011
by George Conger

The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church has declined to respond to questions concerning her ordination to the priesthood of a paedophile. Her silence has prompted questions from liberals and conservatives in the church about what she knew of the Rev. Bede Parry’s confessed abuse of boys, and when she knew it.

Last week Fr. Parry resigned as an assistant priest on the staff of All Saints Episcopal Church in Las Vegas. On June 23 he was named as a sexual predator in a lawsuit filed by a Missouri man against Conception Abbey, a Roman Catholic monastery and seminary in Missouri.

Fr. Parry admitted he had abused the victim in 1987 in an interview with the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Kansas City Star, but told both newspapers he had not reoffended since that time.

The lawsuit, filed in Nodaway County Circuit Court in Missouri, alleges that Parry joined the Benedictine order in 1973, leaving the abbey from 1979 to 1982 to study at St. John’s University School of Theology in Collegeville, Minnesota. Upon his return to the abbey, Br. Parry was appointed secretary to the abbot and director of the choir. In 1983 he was ordained to the priesthood. the rest

However, he told the Episcopal Bishop of Nevada, the Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori of the 1987 incident when he applied to be received as priest in the Episcopal Church in 2002.

In an interview with The Star, Fr. Parry stated the allegations in the lawsuit were true. “When I left Conception Abbey in ’87, it was for sexual misconduct,” he said. “But that was all that was ever said or known.”

After serving as music director for two years at All Saints, Parry said he noticed “they needed clergy, and I felt called. I talked to the bishop, and she accepted me. And I told her at the time that there was an incident of sexual misconduct at Conception Abbey in ’87. The Episcopal Church doesn’t have a ‘one strike and you’re out’ policy, so it didn’t seem like I was any particular threat. She said she’d have to check the canons, and she did.”

A.S. Haley: Troubling Questions Raised by Bishop's Acceptance of Child Molester to Be Priest
A recent lawsuit filed in Missouri over child molestation and abuse charges against a Catholic monastery there contains allegations which, if proved, raise troubling questions about the conduct of ECUSA's Presiding Bishop when she was the Bishop of Nevada from 2000 until her election to the national post in 2006. The lawsuit alleges that one of the abbey's Benedictine monks, Bede Parry, molested the plaintiff and several other young men over a five-year period between 1982 and 1987 while they sang in the Abbey Choir, of which Parry was the director. (See this news release for a link to download a .pdf of the petition - h/t: Pageantmaster.) When the facts of the abuse came out in 1987, Parry left the monastery for a course of treatment, and then used his position as a Catholic priest to work at a variety of Catholic and Lutheran parishes in the southwest.

In 2000, Parry apparently applied to join another Catholic monastery, and underwent psychological testing and evaluation. "The results of this testing revealed that Fr. Parry was a sexual abuser who had the proclivity to reoffend with minors," the lawsuit alleges. Instead of joining the monastery, Parry was hired as the music director at All Saints Episcopal Church, in Las Vegas, where Jefferts Schori was the diocesan. (She did not need to be consulted about his hiring, and Parry now says that he did not disclose the test results to the clergy at All Saints.)........

Census: More children call a grandparent's house home

Census data reveal a surprising growth spurt in the lives of U.S. kids
June 30, 2011

There's plenty of energy at Dorothy Martin's house these days — three grandchildren ages 6 and younger make sure of that - but she doesn't put up with chaos.

"I'm old school," Martin said about raising three of her grandchildren. "I do know you have to change, but I believe in discipline, in having kids be kids. Everything has to be consistent."

That has been her goal since taking in granddaughters Ji'Bri Brown-Martin, now 6, and Che'Lyse Brown-Martin, 5, in 2008. Another granddaughter, 2-year-old Na'Rya Brown, joined the household soon after she was born.

New statistics released Wednesday by the U.S. Census Bureau show that Martin and her grandchildren have plenty of company. the rest

NRO: Unmade in New York

We were told that same-sex marriage was necessary for meeting couples’ concrete needs. Now, we’re told that that was all wrong.
June 29, 2011

Not providing formal governmental recognition of two people’s relationship doesn’t amount to denigrating them. Male-female and same-sex unions may have inherently different structures, norms, and social roles and purposes. Imposing marital norms on same-sex unions, where they make less sense, may well be unfair. There are good reasons to keep marriage separate, in law and culture, from other romantic arrangements.

Yet every one of these points had been made as recently as the day the bill passed. Not in National Review, but in the New York Times. Not by a traditional supporter of marriage, but by a liberal proponent of redefining it. Not by social conservatives—but by Katherine Franke, a lesbian left-winger who is director of the Center for Gender and Sexuality Law at Columbia Law School. In other words, these points are agreeable even to some who would trade the 2,300-year-old intellectual tradition originating with Plato and Aristotle for the 60-year-old liberationist ideology descended from Hefner and Kinsey.

Though they supported its passage, you see, Franke and her partner will not seek a marriage license under the new law. They fear that in practice it might force them to be legally married in order to hold on to shared employment benefits and social respectability. They want to keep their domestic partnership, which gives them “greater freedom” than “the one-size-fits-all rules of marriage”—the freedom to form relationships that “far exceed, and often improve on, the narrow, legal definition of marriage.”

Franke leaves out just how these relationships “far exceed” marriage, perhaps not trusting her readers to see them as improvements after all. But then the Times had already divulged the empirically supported “open secret” about how often partners in same-sex civil marriages expressly reject sexual exclusivity.

For years, we were told that same-sex marriage was necessary for meeting couples’ concrete needs. Then, that it could and should be used to make same-sex couples live by marital norms. More recently, that relationship recognition was necessary for equal personal dignity. Now Katherine Franke, on the day that same-sex marriage passes in New York, tells us that that was all wrong. the rest

U.S. recognizes Muslim Brotherhood


The U.S. has decided to formally resume contact with Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood group - which does not recognize Israel – in a move that could further alienate some Jewish voters already skeptical of President Barack Obama, it was reported.

One senior U.S. official said the Brotherhood’s rise in political prominence after the forced departure of former President Hosni Mubarak earlier this year makes the American contact necessary.

“The political landscape in Egypt has changed, and is changing… It is in our interests to engage with all of the parties that are competing for parliament or the presidency,” said the official, who confirmed the news to Reuters on condition of anonymity.  the rest

Federal Appeals Court Panel Upholds Obamacare Against Lawsuit

by Steven Ertelt
Washington, DC

A federal appeals court upheld the Obamacare health care law that pro-life groups opposed because of abortion funding and rationing concerns, though the lawsuit is not either of the two premier lawsuits filed by Florida, Virginia and other states.

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the individual mandate contained in the 2010 health care law on a 2-1 vote. The ruling claims Congress has the power to force individuals to buy health insurance under its authority to regulate interstate commerce — the main argument the Obama administration has been using to defend the law against the multiple lawsuits organizations, lawmakers and states have filed.

“We find that the minimum coverage provision is a valid exercise of legislative power by Congress under the Commerce Clause,” the court wrote. the rest

Sixth Circuit Upholds Obamacare by Blurring Its Logic

Obama's Health Care Law Battle Nears Supreme Court

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Only Pair of Matching Singing Bird Pistols, Attributed to Frères Rochat

Larger video here

Sold for $5.8 Million

UK: Iran conducting secret ballistic missile tests alongside public military maneuvers

By Associated Press
Wednesday, June 29, 2011

LONDON — Britain’s foreign secretary says Iran has conducted covert tests of ballistic missiles alongside a 10-day program of public military maneuvers.

William Hague told the House of Commons on Wednesday that there had been secret experiments with missiles and rocket launchers.

Iran is conducting 10 days of war games in an apparent show of strength to the West and on Tuesday fired 14 missiles in public tests.

Britain believes Tehran has conducted at least three secret tests of medium-range ballistic missiles since October. the rest

Houston VA accused of censoring religious speech

June 28, 2011

Local veterans and volunteer groups accuse Department of Veterans Affairs officials of censoring religious speech — including the word "God" - at Houston National Cemetery.

In one example cited in documents filed this week in federal court, cemetery director Arleen Ocasio reportedly told volunteers with the National Memorial Ladies that they had to stop telling families "God bless you" at funerals and that they had to remove the words "God bless" from condolence cards.

"It's just unfair that somebody would ask us to take God out of our vocabulary," said Cheryl Whitfield, founder of Houston National Memorial Ladies.

"I could've kept my mouth shut and let things happen, but when it comes to standing up for your belief in God and giving comfort to the families, I don't want to regret not saying anything," Whitfield said. "We all had to stand up for what we believe in."

The new allegations of "religious hostility" by VA and cemetery officials follow on the heels of a controversy over Pastor Scott Rainey's prayer in Jesus' name at a Memorial Day service in the cemetery. the rest

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Euthanasia on the rise in Holland: now being applied to patients with dementia

by Jeanne Smits, Paris correspondent
Mon Jun 27, 2011

( - Euthanasia is on the rise in the Netherlands, and it is taking an even uglier turn than many would have expected.

Cases of euthanasia have risen from 2,500 in 2009 to 2,700 in 2010; but even more shocking, last year 21 persons suffering from the early stages of dementia, but who were otherwise in good health, were euthanized. All of these 21 “mercy killings” were subsequently approved by the official euthanasia follow-up commission.

This 2010 annual report on euthanasia has yet to be published, but key figures were released by the official news channel, NOS, last Saturday.

The program on NOS told the story of 63-year-old Guusje de Koning, one of the “beneficiaries” of euthanasia last year. In a video shot by de Koning’s husband four days before the 63-year-old woman’s death, and aired on the television station, she explains her choice to be killed to her two children.  the rest

Two CNY religious leaders on homosexual marriage

Tuesday, June 28, 2011
The Post-Standard

"Priests who participate in a same-sex wedding would go against the teaching of the church, said Bishop Robert Cunningham, of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Syracuse.

“We would have to take appropriate action at that time,” he said.

By contrast, Bishop Skip Adams, who leads the Central New York Episcopal diocese, sent a letter Monday freeing priests to perform the ceremonies.

“They are free to use their own discretion in their pastoral responsibilities in their own parishes,” Adams said.

The decision does not require any Episcopal priest in the diocese — an area that includes nearly 100 churches from the St. Lawrence River, south to the Pennsylvania border, east to Rome and west almost to Geneva — to perform same-sex marriages." Full story

Same Bishop who sold Church of the Good Shepherd to Muslims (MCJ)
...Think about that for a minute – The Episcopal Church put an active Christian parish out of their traditional home because that parish believes homosexual practice is a sin… and instead sold it to a faith that believes homosexual practice deserves death...

Illusions of Equality

Jun 28, 2011
Elizabeth Scalia

About 15 years ago a new Catholic parish was erecting its single-building church and social center. The pastor asked the religious sister who acted as Director of Religious Education to choose the tiles for the parish center’s bathrooms. The gentleman’s bathroom was outfitted in a rather pretty shade of gray with darker accents. The ladies room, however, startled everyone who entered it; gazing into the mirrors at their bilious reflections, woman after woman grimaced and asked “who on earth decided on spicy-mustard yellow?”

Complete to a shade—with brown accents, no less—the lavatory quickly became known as the “vomitory,” and Sister Decorator made a sincere apology for the Jaundice Surprise. “I thought pink or rose would be too feminine, too Barbie, and the yellow would be less stereotypical,” she explained.

This was consistent with Sister’s feminist conscience, which had earlier caused conflict when she tried to introduce inclusive language to the Gloria, because “some people have issue with their fathers, and this makes it difficult for them to recognize God-as-Father.” Her intention was to wipe out any and all “feminine social constructs” while simultaneously inserting feminine perspectives or downgrading the masculine, wherever she could. There was a staggering incoherence to her efforts: femininity was bad, but women were good; men were alright but masculinity was a horror, except when a woman could achieve equality with masculine constructs. Equality was the highest good.

Sister was a good person; she was very kind and a hard worker, but she was so obsessed with notions of equality that she lost her ability to see people as anything but types and categories. At a ministry thank-you dinner, we shared a table and, emboldened by wine, I suggested her version of the Gloria was insensitive to many: “You’re right that some people have issues with their earthly fathers,” I said, “but it’s for that very reason that we want to hear about—and need to know—our Heavenly Father. When you take that from us, we have nothing—no earthly father, no heavenly one, either.”

The astonished sister answered that she had never heard such an idea before, and that she was sure I must represent a very small minority, and as interesting as she thought my sentiments, she was certain that the larger society was better served by gender-free prayer. Language mattered: it made us all equal before God and God equally accessible to all of us. the rest-excellent! image

AMA adopts policy supporting same-sex marriage

27 Jun 2011

The American Medical Association today adopted a new policy in support of same-sex marriage, saying that excluding sa,e-sex couples from legal marriage recognition is discriminatory and that the AMA supports relationship recognition as a means of addressing health disparities and that gay and lesbian couples and their families face.

H-65.973 Health Care Disparities in Same-Sex Partner Households, adopted today by the AMA, declares: “Our American Medical Association: (1) recognizes that denying civil marriage based on sexual orientation is discriminatory and imposes harmful stigma on gay and lesbian individuals and couples and their families; (2) recognizes that exclusion from civil marriage contributes to health care disparities affecting same-sex households; (3) will work to reduce health care disparities among members of same-sex households including minor children; and (4) will support measures providing same-sex households with the same rights and privileges to health care, health insurance, and survivor benefits, as afforded opposite-sex households.” the rest
The American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists already support marriage equality for same-sex couples.

Texas to defund Planned Parenthood


The Texas Legislature approved a bill Monday that would both compel the state to push the Obama administration to convert Texas’s Medicaid program into a block grant and defund abortion providers like Planned Parenthood.

The omnibus health bill also includes a number of other controversial provisions, including plans to save $400 million over the next year by increasing the use of Medicaid managed care. the rest

New Hampshire Scraps $1.8M in Planned Parenthood Tax Funding

Wisconsin Budget Defunds Planned Parenthood

  ...North Carolina

Cancer Surges In Body Scanner Operators; TSA Launches Cover-Up

Paul Joseph Watson
June 28, 2011

Fearful of provoking further public resistance to naked airport body scanners, the TSA has been caught covering up a surge in cases of TSA workers developing cancer as a result of their close proximity to radiation-firing devices, perhaps the most shocking revelation to emerge from the latest FOIA documents obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center.

After Union representatives in Boston discovered a “cancer cluster” amongst TSA workers linked with radiation from the body scanners, the TSA sought to downplay the matter and refused to issue employees with dosimeters to measure levels of exposure.

The documents indicate how, “A large number of workers have been falling victim to cancer, strokes and heart disease.”

“The Department, rather than acting on it, or explaining its position seems to have just dismissed. I don’t think that’s the way most other agencies would have acted in a similar situation if they were confronted with that question,” EPIC’s Marc Rotenberg said.

the rest

Bishop Salmon to Lead Nashotah House

June 27, 2011

The Rt. Rev. Edward L. Salmon, Jr., is the new dean and president of Nashotah House Theological Seminary, and will arrive on campus in mid-August.

Bishop Salmon, a member of Nashotah’s board of trustees since 1993 and its chairman since 1996, said the board elected him in late May, when it announced the resignation of the Very Rev. Robert S. Munday.

Dean Munday’s resignation takes effect June 30, but he will remain on Nashotah’s faculty as research professor of theology and mission. He was dean and president of Nashotah House for 10 years.

Salmon, Bishop of South Carolina from 1990 to 2007, will leave his current position as rector of All Saints Church, Chevy Chase, Md. He told The Living Church that he expects to arrive at the seminary by Aug. 23. the rest

Monday, June 27, 2011

Mapping the 2010 U.S. Census

NYT interactive map-very cool!

Human Life Begins at Conception, Federal Court Rules

Monday, 27 June 2011
Jennifer LeClaire News

A federal court on Friday handed down an order that temporarily suspends a provision of an Indiana law that defunds abortionist organizations like Planned Parenthood. That's the bad news.

The good news is the order also upheld a key provision that requires women to be informed that “human physical life begins when a human ovum is fertilized by a human sperm.”

Specifically, the order explained that “the language crafted by the legislature in this provision supports a finding that the mandated statement refers exclusively to a growing organism that is a member of the Homo sapiens species.”

“No one should be allowed to decide that an innocent life is worthless. Abortionists have done this by telling women that a pre-born baby is just a batch of cells instead of what he or she actually is: a human being. This law ends that deception in Indiana,” says Alliance Defense Fund Senior Counsel Steven H. Aden. “All the court did was recognize the indisputable fact that a biological human life begins at conception. It is false to say anything else.” the rest  image by Ed Uthman

What the religious exemptions in N.Y.'s 'gay marriage' law do and don't cover

Jun 27, 2011
by Michael Foust

(BP)--Religious exemption language that was part of a successful "gay marriage" bill in New York addresses a handful of religious liberty concerns but ignores a large number of other religious conflicts, says an attorney familiar with the issue.

The religious exemption language was critical to getting a handful of Republican senators -- four total -- to support the bill, allowing it to pass, 33-29.

The issue of religious liberty has been at the forefront of conservative concerns about "gay marriage." After it was legalized in Massachusetts in 2004, Catholic Charities chose to get out of adoptions instead of being forced to place children in same-sex homes. While the language might prevent that from happening in New York, Alliance Defense Fund attorney Austin R. Nimocks says, it would not protect a husband-and-wife photography team from state action if they declined to take pictures at a same-sex "wedding." It also would do nothing to prevent the teaching of "gay marriage" in New York schools. Alliance Defense Fund is a legal organization that fights for religious liberty.

Following is a partial transcript of an interview with Nimocks: the rest

Nuclear regulator visits second Nebraska plant on Missouri

By Michael Avok
Mon Jun 27, 2011

(Reuters) - A two-day tour of two Nebraska nuclear power plants surrounded by a swollen Missouri River has generated a regional and national buzz, but relatively little concern from local residents.

In Fort Calhoun, Nebraska, five miles south of the Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant, many people weren't even aware that Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko was checking on the plant's flood protections.

"I think there's something going on at the plant," said a woman working the counter at the local gas station, which also sells food. "All the sheriff's guys are up there. If you want to rob the bank, today would be the day." the rest

Cardinal sees 'no theological obstacle' to women priests

by John L Allen Jr Jun. 27, 2011

Cardinal José da Cruz Policarpo of Lisbon, Portugal, a veteran European prelate at one point considered a contender for the papacy, reportedly has said there’s “no fundamental theological obstacle” to the ordination of women as priests in the Catholic church.

According to the text of an interview with a legal publication in Portugal called Oa, Policarpo said that women’s ordination will happen only “when God wants it,” although not in our lifetimes, and that now is not the time to raise the question.

“Theologically there is no fundamental obstacle,” Policarpo was quoted as saying. “We could say there’s a tradition, because it’s never been done.”

“There’s a fundamental equality among all the members of the church,” the cardinal said. “The problem lies in a strong tradition, which comes from Jesus and from the fact that the churches of the Reformation conceded the priesthood to women." the rest

GAFCON launches new Anglican mission society

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (GAFCON) has announced the launch of a new society to provide support to orthodox Anglicans within the Church of England.

According to GAFCON, the Anglican Mission in England (AMIE) is "dedicated to the conversion of England and biblical church planting".

GAFCON said the society was "determined to stay within the Church of England" and work "as closely as possible" with its institutions.

AMIE is aimed at providing an effective structure that would allow orthodox Anglicans to remain within the Church of England rather than leave it, as some have chosen to do. the rest

Albert Mohler: The Empire State’s Moral Revolution: New York State Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage

Last Friday was a sad day for marriage and, if the advocates of same-sex marriage are right, it was also a sign of things to come.
Monday, June 27, 2011

The legal, social, moral, and political maps of America were redefined last Friday night as the New York State Senate voted 33-29 to legalize same-sex marriage in the state. The State Assembly had already approved the measure, leaving the Republican-controlled Senate the last battleground on the marriage issue. Shortly after the Senate approved the measure, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law. It will take effect in July, thirty days after the Governor’s signature was affixed.

It will be difficult to exaggerate the impact of New York’s move to legalize same-sex marriage. The statistics tell part of the story. New York State becomes the sixth state to recognize same-sex marriage, but its population is greater than that of the other five combined. When same-sex marriage is legal in New York next month, fully one in every nine Americans will live in a state or jurisdiction where same-sex marriage is legal. By any measure, this is a massive development in the nation’s legal and moral life. the rest
One crucial aspect of the New York development is the fact that same-sex marriage was legalized by legislation, and not by order of a court. Eventually, an unusual coalition led by the Governor Andrew Cuomo and major Republican donors pushed the measure through the Senate, even though Republicans had prevented even a vote on such a measure in recent years. As dusk set in Albany on Friday, the fate of marriage appeared to rest on one Republican senator, whose crucial vote would determine the margin for or against the chamber taking the vote. In the end, the measure reached the floor, where it passed by a four-vote margin.

Dying Woman Undergoes Additional TSA Security Screening, Says Family

An elderly woman in the late-stages of leukemia was forced to undergo 45 minutes of additional screenings last Saturday when she tried to board a flight out of Northwest Florida Regional Airport, her daughter told

...But when Reppert made it to the check-in line, Transportation Security Association agents singled her out because she was in a wheelchair. Wheelchairs require other security measures to be employed since they don’t go through metal detectors.

“So they brought my mom to the side, and two agents just started patting her,” Reppert said. “Eventually they found something that appeared to be hard and they said could be a concealed weapon.”

She said two female agents wheeled her mom into a private room where they performed a more thorough inspection, and found that Reppert was wearing a Depend adult diaper.

“It was hard because the underwear was bunched up,” Weber said, adding that she was not in the room as her mother was patted.

After 45 minutes, the mother and daughter were given two options: either don't fly, or lose the Depend. The women chose the latter.  the rest

U.S. Plans Stealth Survey on Access to Doctors

June 26, 2011

WASHINGTON — Alarmed by a shortage of primary care doctors, Obama administration officials are recruiting a team of “mystery shoppers” to pose as patients, call doctors’ offices and request appointments to see how difficult it is for people to get care when they need it.

The administration says the survey will address a “critical public policy problem”: the increasing shortage of primary care doctors, including specialists in internal medicine and family practice. It will also try to discover whether doctors are accepting patients with private insurance while turning away those in government health programs that pay lower reimbursement rates. the rest

Ottawa: Church followers find a new home

The former congregation of St. Alban's church leaves behind its historic roots after a bitter battle with the Anglican Diocese, Kelly Patterson reports
By Kelly Patterson
Ottawa Citizen
June 27, 2011

It was a historic moment in Ottawa as a subdued crowd of about 300 filed out of St. Alban's Anglican Church on King Edward Avenue on Sunday, leaving behind a place where some have roots going back to Confederation.

Founded in 1865, the church where Sir John A. Macdonald worshipped has been in the spotlight ever since a showdown over samesex marriage and other issues led the congregation of St. Alban's to leave the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa, and, after a bitter battle, the building they have called home for 146 years.

"This is kind of historic. We're in a new era," said Sheila Lang, 79, as her grandchildren - the seventh generation of her family to attend the church - played in the reception hall of the Ottawa Little Theatre, where the congregation, now called the Church of the Messiah, will meet until it finds a permanent home. Meanwhile, the diocese will establish a new congregation at St. Alban's, with a relaunch planned for Friday. the rest

More Anglicans Ordained into Catholic Church

Mon, Jun. 27 2011 By Daniel Blake
Christian Post Contributor

Three more former Anglican priests have been ordained into the Roman Catholic Church at the weekend.

The latest priests to turn their backs on the Anglican Communion and join the specially established Catholic Ordinariate are Father David Elliott, of Reading, Berks, Father Jonathan Redvers Harris, of the Isle of Wight and Father Graham Smith, of Christchurch, Dorset. the rest

Preschool Bans Use of Words 'Him' and 'Her'

Associated Press
June 26, 2011

STOCKHOLM (AP) — At the "Egalia" preschool, staff avoid using words like "him" or "her" and address the 33 kids as "friends" rather than girls and boys.

From the color and placement of toys to the choice of books, every detail has been carefully planned to make sure the children don't fall into gender stereotypes.

"Society expects girls to be girlie, nice and pretty and boys to be manly, rough and outgoing," says Jenny Johnsson, a 31-year-old teacher. "Egalia gives them a fantastic opportunity to be whoever they want to be."

The taxpayer-funded preschool which opened last year in the liberal Sodermalm district of Stockholm for kids aged 1 to 6 is among the most radical examples of Sweden's efforts to engineer equality between the sexes from childhood onward. the rest
Breaking down gender roles is a core mission in the national curriculum for preschools, underpinned by the theory that even in highly egalitarian-minded Sweden, society gives boys an unfair edge.

To even things out, many preschools have hired "gender pedagogues" to help staff identify language and behavior that risk reinforcing stereotypes.

160 Million and Counting

June 26, 2011

In 1990, the economist Amartya Sen published an essay in The New York Review of Books with a bombshell title: “More Than 100 Million Women Are Missing.” His subject was the wildly off-kilter sex ratios in India, China and elsewhere in the developing world. To explain the numbers, Sen invoked the “neglect” of third-world women, citing disparities in health care, nutrition and education. He also noted that under China’s one-child policy, “some evidence exists of female infanticide.”

The essay did not mention abortion.

Twenty years later, the number of “missing” women has risen to more than 160 million, and a journalist named Mara Hvistendahl has given us a much more complete picture of what’s happened. Her book is called “Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men.” As the title suggests, Hvistendahl argues that most of the missing females weren’t victims of neglect. They were selected out of existence, by ultrasound technology and second-trimester abortion.

The spread of sex-selective abortion is often framed as a simple case of modern science being abused by patriarchal, misogynistic cultures. Patriarchy is certainly part of the story, but as Hvistendahl points out, the reality is more complicated — and more depressing. the rest

Thus far, female empowerment often seems to have led to more sex selection, not less.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Anglican Report with George Conger and Kevin Kallsen

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Devotional: Whenever a man has seen the glory of God...

Whenever a man has seen the glory of God in the face of Jesus once he comes right into a head-on collision within his own personal living, with all of his principles and motives upon which he has lived until this moment.... if there is to be a continual manifestation of Holy Spirit life, there must be a constant submission to the crucifixion of the flesh, not simply sometimes, but always. ...Alan Redpath  image

Woman marries her dead fiancé

24 Jun 2011

A GRIEVING woman has married the love of her life — two years after he was killed in a car crash.

An obscure law allowed Karen Jumeaux, 22, to wed Anthony Maillot even though he is dead.

She was granted special permission to tie the knot because she could prove she and Anthony were already planning the ceremony.

They had got engaged after meeting in 2007 and had a baby boy in 2009 — shortly before Anthony died aged 20.

Karen finally had her big day in Dizy-le-Gros, eastern France, yesterday after president Nicolas Sarkozy granted her request. the rest image

(Isn't he/she lovely?)

Now that we have homosexual marriage in NY, why stop there...

Woman marries Eiffel Tower  ...Berlin Wall  ...roller coaster

Australian Man Marries His Pet Dog

German Man Marries Dying Cat

Japanese Man Marries Virtual Girlfriend

Man marries his Pillow

Paving The Way For Human-Robot Marriage

The woman who married herself

No Satisfaction in Same-Sex Marriage

Friday, June 24, 2011
Kevin Staley-Joyce

It’s no secret that one major undercurrent of the same-sex marriage movement is the desire to change the marriage culture—family and childrearing norms, for instance—not simply to realize the practical benefits of marriage. But once a redefined marriage culture is in place, one wonders whether marriage will continue to matter at all to those who at one time touted it as the panacea for same-sex woes.

In yesterday’s Times, Columbia Law School professor Katherine M. Franke opined that, while some gay couples may wish to get on board with marriage, others don’t see the “one-size-fits-all rules of marriage” as the ideal setup for the kinds of arrangements some same-sex relationships demand. She goes on,

Here’s why I’m worried: Winning the right to marry is one thing; being forced to marry is quite another. How’s that? If the rollout of marriage equality in other states, like Massachusetts, is any guide, lesbian and gay people who have obtained health and other benefits for their domestic partners will be required by both public and private employers to marry their partners in order to keep those rights. In other words, “winning” the right to marry may mean “losing” the rights we have now as domestic partners, as we’ll be folded into the all-or-nothing world of marriage.

After “winning the right to marry,” Franke argues, couples uninterested in marriage risk being “forced to marry” in order to keep their domestic partnership rights. She wonders further why couples should have to seek marriage at all if they seek mainly to have their relationships “recognized and valued.” the rest

In New York, Marriage "Altered Radically and Forever"

Friday, June 24, 2011
At 10.30 tonight, after weeks of heated debate and charged negotiations, the New York Senate approved a same-sex marriage bill by a 33-29 vote, making the Empire State the sixth -- and, by far, most consequential -- Stateside jurisdiction to enact full legal status for gay unions.

Within minutes of the result -- signed into law an hour later by Gov. Andrew Cuomo (above) and slated to take effect in 30 days' time -- the following statement was released by the New York bishops, who provided the measure's lead institutional opposition:

The passage by the Legislature of a bill to alter radically and forever humanity’s historic understanding of marriage leaves us deeply disappointed and troubled.

We strongly uphold the Catholic Church’s clear teaching that we always treat our homosexual brothers and sisters with respect, dignity and love. But we just as strongly affirm that marriage is the joining of one man and one woman in a lifelong, loving union that is open to children, ordered for the good of those children and the spouses themselves. This definition cannot change, though we realize that our beliefs about the nature of marriage will continue to be ridiculed, and that some will even now attempt to enact government sanctions against churches and religious organizations that preach these timeless truths. the rest

What same-sex "marriage" has done to Massachusetts

It's far worse than most people realize
October 20, 2008
by Brian Camenker

[NOTE: For a 4-page printable version(PDF format) CLICK HERE.]
Anyone who thinks that same-sex “marriage” is a benign eccentricity which won’t affect the average person should consider what it has done in Massachusetts. It’s become a hammer to force the acceptance and normalization of homosexuality on everyone. And this train is moving fast. What has happened so far is only the beginning.
On November 18, 2003, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court announced its Goodridge opinion, ruling that it was unconstitutional not to allow same-sex “marriage.” Six months later, homosexual marriages began to be performed.

The public schools

The homosexual “marriage” onslaught in public schools across the state started soon after the November 2003, court decision.
  • At my own children's high school there was a school-wide assembly to celebrate same-sex “marriage” in early December, 2003. It featured an array of speakers, including teachers at the school who announced that they would be “marrying” their same-sex partners and starting families either through adoption or artificial insemination. Literature on same-sex marriage – how it is now a normal part of society – was handed out to the students.
  • Within months it was brought into the middle schools. In September, 2004, an 8th-grade teacher in Brookline, MA, told National Public Radio that the marriage ruling had opened up the floodgates for teaching homosexuality. “In my mind, I know that, `OK, this is legal now.' If somebody wants to challenge me, I'll say, `Give me a break. It's legal now,'” she told NPR. She added that she now discusses gay sex with her students as explicitly as she desires. For example, she said she tells the kids that lesbians can have vaginal intercourse using sex toys.
  • By the following year it was in elementary school curricula. Kindergartners were given picture books telling them that same-sex couples are just another kind of family, like their own parents. In 2005, when David Parker of Lexington, MA – a parent of a kindergartner – strongly insisted on being notified when teachers were discussing homosexuality or transgenderism with his son, the school had him arrested and put in jail overnight.

    Second graders at the same school were read a book, “King and King”, about two men who have a romance and marry each other, with a picture of them kissing. When parents Rob and Robin Wirthlin complained, they were told that the school had no obligation to notify them or allow them to opt-out their child.
  • In 2006 the Parkers and Wirthlins filed a federal Civil Rights lawsuit to force the schools to notify parents and allow them to opt-out their elementary-school children when homosexual-related subjects were taught. The federal judges dismissed the case. The judges ruled that because same-sex marriage is legal in Massachusetts, the school actually had a duty to normalize homosexual relationships to children, and that schools have no obligation to notify parents or let them opt-out their children! Acceptance of homosexuality had become a matter of good citizenship!

    Think about that: Because same-sex marriage is “legal”, a federal judge has ruled that the schools now have a duty to portray homosexual relationships as normal to children, despite what parents think or believe!
the rest

    Friday, June 24, 2011

    Devotional: God is often silent...

    God is often silent when we prefer that he speak, and he interrupts us when we prefer that he stay silent. His ways are not our ways. To live with the sacred God of creation means that we conduct our lives with a God who does not explain himself to us. It means that we worship a God who is often mysterious - too mysterious to fit our formulas for better living. It means that God is not our best friend, our secret lover or our good-luck charm. He is God. ...Craig Barnes image by Laurence Edmondson

    Peter Falk, Rumpled and Crafty Actor on ‘Columbo,’ Dies at 83

    File:Peter Falk Columbo.JPG
    June 24, 2011

    Peter Falk, who marshaled actorly tics, prop room appurtenances and his own physical idiosyncrasies to personify Columbo, one of the most famous and beloved fictional detectives in television history, died on Thursday night at his home in Beverly Hills, Calif. He was 83.

    His death was announced in a statement from Larry Larson, a longtime friend and the lawyer for Mr. Falk’s wife, Shera Danese. He had been treated for Alzheimer’s disease in recent years.

    Mr. Falk had a wide-ranging career in comedy and drama, in the movies and onstage, before and during the three-and-a-half decades in which he portrayed the slovenly but canny lead on “Columbo.” He was nominated for two Oscars; appeared in original stage productions of works by Paddy Chayefsky, Neil Simon and Arthur Miller, worked with the directors Frank Capra, John Cassavetes, Blake Edwards and Mike Nichols, and co-starred with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Bette Davis and Jason Robards. the rest image


    Delta Adopts Saudi Arabian Airlines' No Jew Policy


    For a long time in Michigan, Northwest Airlines had its hub at Detroit Metropolitan Airport. That meant an essential monopoly on domestic flights in and out of Detroit. A few years ago Delta Airlines took over Northwest Airlines and now the vast majority of domestic flights at Detroit Metro are operated by Delta. That fact makes it especially troubling to learn that Delta will add Saudi Arabian Airlines to its SkyTeam Alliance of partnering companies and would require Delta to ban Jews and holders of Israeli passports from boarding flights to Saudi Arabia. The partnership was originally announced by Delta Airlines in a press release on January 10, 2011.   the rest

    Added: Airline to Jewish rumor: 'Delta does not discriminate.'

    Dream Act: This is outright lawlessness from Obama admin

    Charles KrauthammerJun 23, 2011
    Obama is trying to use his executive powers to enforce the Dream Act even though Congress couldn’t pass the legislation. Chris Wallace lays out the details:
    I.C.E has announced changes to its deportation program. Agents are now specifically urged to consider whether an illegal is studying in high school or college or is serving or did serve in the military.
    Krauthammer says that this is outright lawlessness on the part of the Obama administration because they are doing the same thing with the Dream Act that they did with Cap and Trade, using the EPA to enforce it anyway. He says we have a rule of law where the Congress creates the laws and the Executive executes them. By forcing agents to not deport illegals who are studying in high school or college is running an end around Congress. Further, he adds, by not basing this on the rule of law, the criteria that agents and prosecutors will use to make these judgments becomes arbitrary and unfair which means someone may get to stay that should be deported and visa-versa.

    When addressing the political implications of this, that the Republicans risk becoming the party of deportation as suggested by his colleagues, Krauthammer simply states that the Constitution trumps politics. He adds that if we secure the border and then try to work out some type of program to give illegals a path to citizenship, then the American people will be generous if they know this is the last batch that will need this type of program. But if the border isn’t secured and illegals just keep pouring in, then the American people won’t go for it. the rest-video here

    Church Congregations Can Be Blind to Mental Illness, Study Suggests

    June 22, 2011

    Mental illness of a family member can destroy the family's connection with the religious community, a new study by Baylor University psychologists has found, leading many affected families to leave the church and their faith behind.

    The study shows that while families with a member who has mental illness have less involvement in faith practices, they would like their congregation to provide assistance with those issues. However, the rest of the church community seemed to overlook their need entirely. In fact, the study found that while help from the church with depression and mental illness was the second priority of families with mental illness, it ranked 42nd on the list of requests from families that did not have a family member with mental illness.

    "The difference in response is staggering, especially given the picture of distress painted by the data: families with mental illness reported twice as many problems and tended to ask for assistance with more immediate or crisis needs compared to other families," said study co-author Dr. Matthew Stanford, professor of psychology and neuroscience at Baylor, who is an expert in mental illness and the church. "The data give the impression that mental illness, while prevalent within a congregation, is also nearly invisible." the rest

    "Families with mental illness stand to benefit from their involvement within a congregation, but our findings suggest that faith communities fail to adequately engage these families because they lack awareness of the issues and understanding of the important ways that they can help," said study co-author Dr. Diana Garland, dean of Baylor's School of Social Work.

    Sexual Revolution: Built Upon Sand

    by Anthony Esolen
    June 24, 2011

    The body has a language of its own, and the sexual revolution is founded upon a lie.

    Recently in Public Discourse, I challenged readers to defend the sexual revolution on the grounds that it has conduced to the common good. No one took up that challenge. It would be, I suppose, rather like asking someone to defend the forced collectivization of farms in the Ukraine, while speaking to ten thousand people in Kiev. It is not going to happen.

    Still, I might have given the impression that the sexual revolution is to be rejected on utilitarian grounds. Since I believe that utilitarianism is a serpent that consumes itself—that it is a disutility to believe in it—I’d like now to base my opposition on something far more fundamental than, say, the harm of wrecked families and bursting prisons. The sexual revolution is a house built upon sand. It is founded upon a lie.

    Let us consider the one form of sexual behavior that almost nobody defended before the sexual revolution, and that almost nobody opposes now: fornication. A few pastors may take the sin seriously, but mostly we all shrug and say, “Everyone’s going to do it, so there’s no sense making a fuss over it.” And yet what we are talking about is deeply destructive, because it is fundamentally mendacious. When we lie, we harm not only those we deceive. We harm ourselves. If we continue in this deception, we become hardened liars, in the end perhaps deceiving no one but ourselves. The thief knows he is stealing. The liar ceases to know that he is lying, and is trapped in the emptiness of unmeaning. The thief crucified at the side of Jesus knew he was a thief, and repented. The liars walking freely below no longer recognized their lies, and did not repent. the rest

    Church seeks assurance of religious freedom on civil partnerships issue

    by Karen Peake
    Friday, June 24, 2011

    The Church of England told the Government yesterday that it should have “unfettered freedom” to decide whether to permit civil partnerships on church premises.

    In its submission on the last day of a Government consultation on the issue, the Church said its objective was to ensure that amendments to existing legislation continue to provide “unfettered freedom for each religious tradition to resolve these matters in accordance with its own convictions and its own internal procedures of governance”.

    The consultation follows Parliament’s announcement last year that it planned to lift the prohibition on the registration of civil partnerships in places of worship.

    The decision was welcomed by some faith groups, including the Quakers, but strongly opposed by some Christians who expressed fears that churches would be forced to conduct the ceremonies against their will. the rest

    Afghan Christian beheaded as Islamic terror spreads against converts

    By Mark Tapscott06/22/11

    Another Afghan convert to Christianity has been dragged out of his home and beheaded for his faith, this time on video, according to World Magazine editor Mindy Belz. The poor man's name was Adbul Latif.

    "In the two-minute video, the men, wearing explosive belts (or suicide vests) and kaffiya head scarves to cover their faces, recite verses from the Quran while forcing Latif to the ground and pinning him with their feet," Belz reports in the latest issue of her magazine.

    “'You who are joined with pagans . . . your sentence [is] to be beheaded,' read one of the militants in Farsi from what looked like a paper decree. 'Whoever changes his religion should be executed.' The passages refer to Sura 8:12 ('I will instill terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: smite ye above their necks . . .') and the hadiths, or sayings of Mohammed," she wrote. the rest

    Mexico nabs ex-governor accused of stealing $9 million

    Evangelical pastor is charged with pocketing funds meant to rebuild hurricane-struck villages6/8/2011

    TUXTLA GUTIERREZ, Mexico — A former governor was arrested Tuesday on suspicion that he embezzled more than $9 million (about 100 million pesos) in federal disaster fund money meant to rebuild hurricane-struck zones in southern Mexico.

    Pablo Salazar, formerly governor of Chiapas, was detained in the airport of the Yucatan resort of Cancun by Chiapas state police, said Raziel Lopez, the state attorney general. Police flew him to Tuxtla Gutierrez, capital of Chiapas, Tuesday night to be presented before a judge.

    Lopez said Salazar used relief money offered by the federal government to enrich himself instead of rebuilding Indian villages that were destroyed in 2005 by Hurricane Stan. Then President Vicente Fox had offered $780 million (8.5 billion pesos) in federal disaster fund money for Chiapas. the rest

    After 93 years, Corpus Christi procession to take place in St. Petersburg, Russia

    Jun 23, 2011

    (CNA).- The mayor of St. Petersburg, Russia has granted permission for the first Corpus Christi procession to take place in the city since 1918.

    The announcement was confirmed by the Archdiocese of the Mother of God in Moscow, reported Vatican Radio. The procession will take place on Sunday, June 26, through the Prospettiva Nevsky Avenue, the city’s main street.

    The avenue has traditionally been called the “way of confessional tolerance,” as it is lined with Catholic, Orthodox, Lutheran and Armenian churches. According to archdiocesan officials, the last time a Corpus Christ procession took place on the avenue was in 1918. the rest

    Ex-boss of Naral, pleads guilty to stealing $75,000 from the org.

    BY Melissa Grace
    Wednesday, June 22nd 2011

    The ex-boss of a leading abortion rights group pleaded guilty Wednesday to stealing $75,000 from the organization - using donor money to pay her high-flying lifestyle.

    Kelli Conlin, who left Naral Pro-Choice of New York after two decades in January, used the political cash to cover part of a $30,000 a Hamptons rental, a car service for her kids and to buy designer clothes, officials said.

    "Yes, your honor," Conlin told Judge Larry Stephen when asked if she was pleading guilty to felony falsifying business records - a deal that keeps her out of jail.

    The fake charges began in 2007 and came to light after an internal audit last year, officials said. the rest

    Thursday, June 23, 2011

    Church of England to allow civil partnerships – if synod agrees

    Church ceremonies for same-sex couples unlikely to be given go-ahead owing to traditionalists' opposition to homosexuality
    Riazat Butt
    Thursday 23 June 2011

    The Church of England has said it would allow civil partnerships in its buildings but only if the General Synod agreed to the move, an unlikely prospect given the staunch opposition of traditionalists to homosexuality.

    In response to the government's Equality Office consultation on the subject, the church said the "present objective" was to ensure that amendments to existing legislation continued to provide "unfettered freedom for each religious tradition to resolve these matters in accordance with its own convictions and its own internal procedures of governance".

    Some religious groups welcomed last year's House of Lords decision to lift the ban on religious premises holding civil partnership ceremonies. The amendment to the equality bill, tabled as a free vote by Lord Alli, received overwhelming backing, including from several bishops.

    But William Fittall, general secretary of the Archbishops' Council and member of the synod, which would decide whether to allow civil partnerships in churches, wrote: "For most Christian denominations, as well as other faith groups, the issues involved are set to remain sensitive and, to varying degrees, contested." the rest

    CBO: Stimulus almost doubled U.S. debt

    By Conn Carroll

    A new report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) finds that President Obama’s economic stimulus program helped nearly double U.S. debt.

    The 2011 Long-Term Budget Outlook, released Wednesday morning, reports that the “the combination of automatic budgetary responses” and Obama’s stimulus “had a profound impact on the federal budget.” According to CBO projections, before Obama’s stimulus became law, federal debt equaled 36 percent of GDP and was projected to decline slightly over the next few years. Instead, thanks in large part to the stimulus, debt reached 62 percent of GDP by 2010.

    Other lowlights from the report include: the rest

    US to Lose Second Place in World Trade to India

    Dutch Court Acquits Geert Wilders of Defaming Muslims

    By Jurjen van de Pol
    Jun 23, 2011

    Dutch Freedom Party Leader Geert Wilders was acquitted by a court of charges that he made remarks defaming Muslims, ending a three-year prosecution that he described as a bid to restrict his freedom of speech.

    Wilders, 47, was charged with inciting hatred and discrimination and insulting Muslims for calling the Koran “fascist” and comparing it to Adolf Hitler’s book “Mein Kampf” in a 2007 Dutch newspaper editorial. A year later, he released his movie “Fitna,” in which he urged Muslims to rip out “hate-preaching” verses from the book. the rest

    Wednesday, June 22, 2011

    Provincial Council 2011: ACNA Adds Two Dioceses, Two New Dioceses in Formation

    Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic and Diocese of Cascadia Welcomed, Congregations Forming in the Carolinas and Southwest
    posted June 22, 2011

    The Provincial Council of the Anglican Church in North America unanimously voted to grant admission and full diocesan status to two new dioceses today. In addition, the Council also unanimously voted to admit two groups of congregations in the Carolinas and the Southwest (West Texas and New Mexico) to begin to form dioceses in their respective geographic locations.

    The newly-admitted Diocese of Cascadia has grown from seven congregations in the northwest region of the U.S. to 21 congregations in a little over one year. The Anglican District of Virginia will become the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic and consists of 31 congregations and 9 mission fellowships.

    In discussing dioceses and the role of the Anglican Church in the life of congregations, Archbishop Duncan told Council attendees, “If we are to ‘reach North America with the transforming love of Jesus Christ’ the principal way we will do this is through the local congregation. We understand that congregations are where disciples are formed and that it is through congregations that surrounding environments are changed. Bishops, archbishops, dioceses, structures, programs all exist in order to make the local congregation strong.”the rest

    Albert Mohler: When the Church Bows to the State: Gay Bishops in the Church of England

    American churches and denominations had better take note. When a church or Christian institution bows to the authority of the state on a matter of such direct biblical importance, it is destined to lose biblical fidelity.
    Wednesday, June 22, 2011

    As if the Church of England does not have enough troubles, word is leaking out of Lambeth Palace that the church is about to allow the appointment of openly gay bishops, so long as those bishops remain celibate.

    The news has emerged in the form of a leaked internal memorandum prepared for the Archbishop of Canterbury by the church’s highest legal adviser. The legal guidelines are intended to bring the church into compliance with Britain’s Equality Act of 2010, even as the church is considering new criteria for the appointment of bishops. That law prohibits discrimination on the basis of several characteristics, including sexual orientation. The Equality Act has already been used to force some British churches to hire youth ministers and other workers who are openly homosexual. the rest image by Nick

    "Finally, a truly ominous issue is the Church of England’s subservience to the state on the matter of the Equality Act. As an established state church, the Church of England is hardly in a position to reject the government’s laws or to claim the high ground of religious liberty. Thus, it is in a trap from which it seems incapable or unwilling of extricating itself.

    American churches and denominations had better take note. When a church or Christian institution bows to the authority of the state on a matter of such direct biblical importance, it is destined to lose biblical fidelity. The proposed guidelines for the Church of England should serve as an alarm to all churches concerning this real and present danger."

    The 'Jim Crow' Lie

    The 'Jim Crow' Lie How could asking for ID be discriminatory only when it comes to voting?
    JUNE 21, 2011

    Likewise, these days there is a good chance you will be asked for identification when you check into a hotel. You need ID to board an airplane or to drive a car. Recently we visited a doctor whose office is in a hospital. Just to enter the premises, we needed to present ID to a security guard.

    If black people have trouble producing identification, how come nobody ever claims that these requirements are discriminatory?

    Another important aspect of civil rights is equal employment opportunity. Under the 1986 immigration law, when you are hired for a job, you are required to provide your employer with documents proving both your identity and your citizenship or legal residency. How come nobody ever claims these requirements discriminate against blacks?
    It is possible that the ID requirements for planes, trains, automobiles, hotels, hospitals and jobs have justifications so compelling as to justify discrimination. It is also possible that by contrast, as Dionne maintains, preventing election fraud is not a sufficiently compelling justification. The point here is that no one has ever had to make the former argument, because nobody claims ID requirements are discriminatory against blacks except when it comes to voting.  the rest

    Why the Jobs Situation Is Worse Than It Looks

    We now have more idle men and women than at any time since the Great Depression
    By Mortimer B. Zuckerman
    June 20, 2011

    The Great Recession has now earned the dubious right of being compared to the Great Depression. In the face of the most stimulative fiscal and monetary policies in our history, we have experienced the loss of over 7 million jobs, wiping out every job gained since the year 2000. From the moment the Obama administration came into office, there have been no net increases in full-time jobs, only in part-time jobs. This is contrary to all previous recessions. Employers are not recalling the workers they laid off from full-time employment.

    The real job losses are greater than the estimate of 7.5 million. They are closer to 10.5 million, as 3 million people have stopped looking for work. Equally troublesome is the lower labor participation rate; some 5 million jobs have vanished from manufacturing, long America's greatest strength. Just think: Total payrolls today amount to 131 million, but this figure is lower than it was at the beginning of the year 2000, even though our population has grown by nearly 30 million.

    The most recent statistics are unsettling and dismaying, despite the increase of 54,000 jobs in the May numbers. Nonagricultural full-time employment actually fell by 142,000, on top of the 291,000 decline the preceding month. Half of the new jobs created are in temporary help agencies, as firms resist hiring full-time workers. the rest

    Medicaid for the middle class?

     Associated Press
    Tue Jun 21, 2011

    WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama's health care law would let several million middle-class people get nearly free insurance meant for the poor, a twist government number crunchers say they discovered only after the complex bill was signed.

    The change would affect early retirees: A married couple could have an annual income of about $64,000 and still get Medicaid, said officials who make long-range cost estimates for the Health and Human Services department.

    After initially downplaying any concern, the Obama administration said late Tuesday it would look for a fix.

    Up to 3 million more people could qualify for Medicaid in 2014 as a result of the anomaly. That's because, in a major change from today, most of their Social Security benefits would no longer be counted as income for determining eligibility. It might be compared to allowing middle-class people to qualify for food stamps. the rest

    ‘Europe is dying’ U.S. population expert tells Senate hearing

    by Thaddeus Baklinski
    Tue Jun 21, 2011

    ( – Given the precipitous decline in the birthrates of European countries, all anti-natal programs funded by the United States should immediately be replaced by pro-natal programs, one top population expert recently told the U.S. Senate.

    “It doesn’t matter whether we call them reproductive health programs, family planning programs, or population control programs,” said Stephen Mosher, president of the Population Research Institute (PRI). “They all have the same effect: they force down the birth rate in countries that are already dying. Such programs are only making a bad problem worse.”

    The hearing before the Senate Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe focused on the implications for the security, as well as the economic and social developments in Europe, due to demographic decline marked by diminishing and rapidly aging populations, in most of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s (OSCE) 56 participating states. the rest

    Mosher agreed. “Five centuries after the Black Plague devastated Europe, a White Pestilence is now decimating that same continent,” he said. “Many nations, especially in Europe, are already in a death spiral, losing a significant number of people each year. Listen closely, and you will hear the muffled sound of populations crashing.”

    Provincial Council 2011: Archbishop’s State of the Church Address:

    [Given by the Most Reverend Robert Duncan, Archbishop and Primate of the Anglican Church in North America, on 21 June A.D. 2011, at Long Beach, California.]

    Your love, O Lord, forever will I sing;
    From age to age my mouth will proclaim your faithfulness. Psalm 89:1

    These words from the first verse of Psalm 89 are our words as this Provincial Council opens. Our God has been so abundantly good to us – despite all the challenges we have faced – that we are profoundly aware of His love for us and His faithfulness to us. My task in this annual State of the Church Address is to rehearse some of what has happened, especially in this last year, and to remind us of how God’s hand of blessing has been so obviously upon this movement to rebuild a biblical, missionary and united Anglicanism in North America.

    The Anglican Church in North America came together at Bedford, Texas, when its Constitution and Canons were adopted two years ago this week. Since then, the Provincial Council has met at Toronto, Canada; at Amesbury, Massachusetts, and now at Long Beach, California. We have covered a great deal of territory, both literally and figuratively. the rest

    I will just share one final detail. It is a small one, and hidden in the statistical reports. (There is so much to be found in the materials prepared for this meeting. I commend it all to you.) According to the data submitted in the Annual Parochial Reports there were, in the year 2010, 987 baptisms of adults over thirty, 424 baptisms of young people aged sixteen to thirty, and 1647 baptisms of children in the ACNA dioceses, not including the congregations of our Ministry Partners. What is so stunning about this data is that the number of baptisms of those 16 and older is almost equal to the number of children baptized. What this says is that we are reaching adolescents and adults who have never known Christ, never been part of a church. This is to reach North America with the transforming love of Jesus Christ, one sign among many that something quite extraordinary is unfolding. To God be the Glory!

    Culture of death silences opposition in New York

    Alan Sears

    Just consider the full frontal assault NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and others have been carrying out against pregnancy centers in places like New York City throughout this year. With the help of all-too willing accomplices like Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the city council, these profiteers of death have secured passage of a law which forces such pregnancy centers to post signs in English and Spanish telling women a long list of “disclosures” mandated by the city, including whether they perform abortions, whether a licensed medical provider is on staff (even though New York state law does not require medical providers at non-medical centers), and that the city health department encourages women to consult with one.

    The law requires the signs to be posted in various locations throughout the pregnancy centers and replicated in any advertisements issued by the centers. Moreover, counselors working at the pregnancy centers must provide the same message “in person or over the phone when a client requests or inquires” about certain services.

    Clearly, the purpose of the signs is to dissuade women from going to pregnancy centers instead of abortion mills. In effect, the signs are part of larger push to regulate pro-life help providers in order to deny choice to women who want to pursue solutions other than abortion when a need arises. the rest