Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The bible is one of God's greatest love gifts to you...

Bible time
The bible is one of God's greatest love gifts to you. It is the world's greatest literary treasure. It is the foundation of the church and your faith. But there is always the danger that you may forget how personally God wants to give it specifically to you. He desires you to use it daily as your spiritual food, your personal prayer resource, and your weapon for spiritual conquest. 
 ...Wesley L. Duewel image

A.S. Haley: Bishops Bless Blasphemy; Curmudgeon's Cup Runneth Over

June 30, 2015

One hundred and twenty-nine of the bishops in the Episcopal Church (USA) House of Bishops voted yesterday to embrace blasphemy as a "trial rite" for same-sex marriages in the Church. The blasphemy begins in the rite at the point where the celebrant says to the congregation (see p. 98 of these materials; my bold emphasis added):

Dearly beloved: We have come together in the presence of God to witness and bless the joining together of N. and N. in Holy Matrimony. The joining of two people in a life of mutual fidelity signifies to us the mystery of the union between Christ and his Church, and so it is worthy of being honored among all people.
As I wrote in an earlier post, critiquing the rite when it was first proposed, the bold language evinces a category mistake of the worst sort, by equating the union of two people of the same gender to the holy union between Christ and His Church. (How can they be equated? In the former, which of the two men -- or two women -- signifies Christ, and which the Church?)

The bishops approved three other rites for trial use, as well, but they are just as blasphemous in invoking the blessing of the triune God on the union/marriage of a same-sex pair. It was God Himself who defined marriage as between a male and a female in Genesis 2:24, and thus to invoke the name of that same God in blessing (or celebrating) a pairing that is not one that he made provision for in Holy Scripture is a blasphemy on His name... the rest
But the bad news is that, for the reasons explained in this earlier post, the Episcopal Church (USA) will have to make the performance of same-sex marriage rites mandatory upon the request of a same-gender couple, in order to be able to retain its tax-exempt status under the Internal Revenue Code. So the opt-out clause will have to be removed from the Canons at the next General Convention.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Dissenting Obergefell Justices Sound Alarm On Religious Freedom; Priest spit upon at gay pride parade...more

Advice from Chesterton: Don’t Take Down the Fence until You Know Why It’s There  If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the past few days, it’s this: Most people—religious or otherwise—have no idea what marriage is, why it exists, and what we need it for. And what’s worse, they have no idea they have no idea. Some sound advice from G.K. Chesterton...

How to Protect Your Ministry from Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Lawsuits.

Fr. Jonathan Morris spit upon at gay pride parade
He also tweeted... The Episcopal Church sponsored float in gay parade with dancing man or woman (not sure) with short skirt and g-string. Something is wrong.

Milwaukee Art Museum's embrace of condom portrait of pope draws disgust The decision by the Milwaukee Art Museum to acquire and prominently display a controversial portrait of Pope Benedict XVI fashioned from 17,000 colored condoms has created outrage among Catholics and others who see it as profoundly disrespectful, even blasphemous.

Many suggest that if a piece were as offensive to other faith traditions or communities it would not be tolerated, much less embraced.

Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome Listecki blasted the decision as insulting and callous. The museum acknowledged it has fielded about 200 complaints. A handful of patrons dropped their memberships; one longtime docent tendered her resignation; and at least one donor vowed never to support the museum financially again...

Dissenting Obergefell Justices Sound Alarm On Religious Freedom   ...Let’s remind ourselves that for years, now, the media have acted as cheerleaders for same-sex marriage. At best, they’ve ignored concerns from much of the country that redefining marriage to include same-sex couples could lead to grave threats to religious freedom. At worst, they’ve disparaged critics and skeptics of marriage redefinition as the worst kind of bigots. Many journalists, including some at the Washington Post, New York Times, NPR and other major outlets, put word out that they did not believe opponents of marriage redefinition needed to be covered fairly, shunning them as beneath contempt. In recent months, the media engaged in anti-religious liberty campaigns, hunting for heretics in state-based battles of sexual liberty vs. religious freedom.

With that brief reminder, let’s look at what each justice had to say about the clash...

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Look how fears have presented themselves...

Look how fears have presented themselves, so have supports and encouragements; yea, when I have started, even as it were at nothing else but my shadow, yet God, as being very tender of me, hath not suffered me to be molested, but would with one Scripture or another, strengthen me against all; insomuch that I have often said, Were it lawful, I could pray for greater trouble, for the greater comfort's sake. ...John Bunyan image

First Things, Mohler and others on the Supreme Court Homosexual marriage ruling

Here We Stand: An Evangelical Declaration on Marriage
More than 100 leaders respond to Supreme Court legalizing same-sex marriage...

After Obergefell: A First Things Symposium
How should we respond to the ruling by the Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges that there is a constitutional right to same-sex marriage? What’s next?

These are the question that we asked the following contributors—male and female, gay and straight, Christian and Jewish, Protestant and Catholic and Orthodox—to answer in this First Things symposium....

Mohler: Everything Has Changed and Nothing Has Changed — The Supreme Court Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage ...The Supreme Court’s over-reach in this case is more astounding as the decision is reviewed in full, and as the dissenting justices voiced their own urgent concerns. The Chief Justice accused the majority of “judicial policymaking” that endangers our democratic form of government. “The Court today not only overlooks our country’s entire history and tradition but actively repudiates it, preferring to live only in the heady days of the here and now,” he asserted. Further: “Over and over, the majority exalts the role of the judiciary in delivering social change.”

“The majority,” he made clear, “lays out a tantalizing vision for the future for Members of this Court. If an unvarying social institution enduring over all of recorded history cannot inhibit judicial policymaking, what can?”

That is a haunting question. This Chief Justice’s point is an urgent warning: If the Supreme Court will arrogate to itself the right to redefine marriage, there is no restraint on the judiciary whatsoever...

Orthodox Christians Must Now Learn To Live as Exiles in Our Own Country ...It is hard to overstate the significance of the Obergefell decision — and the seriousness of the challenges it presents to orthodox Christians and other social conservatives. Voting Republican and other failed culture war strategies are not going to save us now.

Discerning the meaning of the present moment requires sobriety, precisely because its radicalism requires of conservatives a realistic sense of how weak our position is in post-Christian America.

The alarm that the four dissenting justices sounded in their minority opinions is chilling. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Antonin Scalia were particularly scathing in pointing out the philosophical and historical groundlessness of the majority’s opinion. Justice Scalia even called the decision “a threat to democracy,” and denounced it, shockingly, in the language of revolution...Dreher

The Obergefell v. Hodges (same-sex marriage) Mega-Post
ADF Alliance-great resource!

white house colors 3
White House Bathed in Rainbow
The White House Friday evening was lit up in rainbow, the symbol of the gay rights movement.

Bishop Julian Dobbs' statement on Supreme Court decision on homosexual marriage

June 26, 2015

A Statement From Bishop Julian Dobbs regarding the decision on
Marriage from the Supreme Court of the United States.

Greetings in the name of our Lord,

The College of Bishops of the Anglican Church in North
America have released a statement on marriage following the
decision from the Supreme Court of the United States which is
copied below.

The position of our diocese on marriage is clearly and publicly
stated in our canons, "The Diocese affirms our Lord's teaching
that Holy Matrimony is in its nature a covenantal union,
permanent and lifelong, of one man and one woman. No
marriage or other conjugal union of persons shall take place in
any of the Congregations or Missions of the Diocese, or with
the participation of the clergy of this Diocese except in
accordance with these Canons." Title III, canon 4, Section 1.

In faithful witness to Christ our Lord,

Your brother and bishop,

Bp. Julian Dobbs

ACNA Bishops’ Statement on Supreme Court Ruling

Friday, June 26, 2015

Christus Rex

by Dominic Bouck, O.P.
6 . 26 . 15

As the dust settles and the role that conscientious dissenters will have in our New Society is made clearer, we who pray “Thy kingdom come” need not be afraid. What is new is the unfortunate decision of five Supreme Court justices. What isn’t new is the call for Christians to live lives of peace, love, joy, freedom, generosity, kindness, and prayer. The Holy Spirit, as far as I know, hasn’t been overruled by the Supreme Court.

What better time to let our light shine before all mankind. We can be gracious in our legal defeat while remaining firm in our conviction that God made man, male and female, in his own image, and created man and woman to live together in fruitful harmony. We can still ask his unfailing mercy for ourselves, first of all, and for all those who do not know him.

Jesus is king. Amen. Alleluia. No civil authority can change that. What we owe him in obedience cannot be changed by any civil compulsion, full stop. Freedom is something so internal that external things cannot touch it. When civil society falters, each believer can check to see whether the foundation of his life was set on the rocky ground of God, or the sands of fickle earthly masters... the rest image

Mohler responds to Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage decision

June 26, 2015

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is a statement from R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, on the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States concerning same-sex marriage:

Everything has changed and nothing has changed. The Supreme Court’s decision today is a central assault upon marriage as the conjugal union of a man and a woman and in a 5-4 decision the nation’s highest court has now imposed its mandate redefining marriage on all 50 states.

As Chief Justice Roberts said in his dissent, “The majority’s decision is an act of will, not a legal judgment.”

The majority’s argument, expressed by Justice Kennedy, is that the right of same-sex couples to marry is based in individual autonomy as related to sexuality, in marriage as a fundamental right, in marriage as a privileged context for raising children, and in upholding marriage as central to civilization. But at every one of these points, the majority had to reinvent marriage in order to make its case. The Court has not merely ordered that same-sex couples be allowed to marry — it has fundamentally redefined marriage itself.

The inventive legal argument set forth by the majority is clearly traceable in Justice Kennedy’s previous decisions including Lawrence (2003) and Windsor (2013), and he cites his own decisions as legal precedent. As the Chief Justice makes clear, Justice Kennedy and his fellow justices in the majority wanted to legalize same-sex marriage and they invented a constitutional theory to achieve their purpose. It was indeed an act of will disguised as a legal judgment.

The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the land, and its decisions cannot be appealed to a higher court of law. But the Supreme Court, like every human institution and individual, will eventually face two higher courts. The first is the court of history, which will render a judgment that I believe will embarrass this court and reveal its dangerous trajectory. The precedents and arguments set forth in this decision cannot be limited to the right of same-sex couples to marry. If individual autonomy and equal protection mean that same-sex couples cannot be denied what is now defined as a fundamental right of marriage, then others will arrive to make the same argument. This Court will find itself in a trap of its own making, and one that will bring great harm to this nation and its families. The second court we all must face is the court of divine judgment. For centuries, marriage ceremonies in the English-speaking world have included the admonition that what God has put together, no human being — or human court — should tear asunder. That is exactly what the Supreme Court of the United States has now done... the rest

We cannot be silent, and we cannot join the moral revolution that stands in direct opposition to what we believe the Creator has designed, given, and intended for us. We cannot be silent, and we cannot fail to contend for marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
Evangelical Leaders Respond to Supreme Court Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage

Top 10 Quotes from the Dissenting Justices on Same-Sex Marriage

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

ACNA Provincial Council 2015-a few pictures and videos

Raymond Dague and Bp. Julian Dobbs 
I'm not too happy about the closeness of the bear to the cameraman.
Bp. Julian Dobbs and crew
(Pictures by Raymond Dague)
 ACNA Provincial Council meeting in Vancouver-information and schedule here. 

June 24, 2015
ACNA Provincial Council: Archbishop Foley Beach's Address

Jun 24, 2015
ACNA Provincial Council Governance Task Force Report
-Rev. Phil Ashey

Jun 24, 2015
ACNA Provincial Council: The Rev Shihoko Warren Testimony

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Transfigurations blog 10th Anniversary

[Jesus face 7.jpg]
June 23, 2015

Well, it's been ten years since I started this blog.  Actually, yesterday was the actual anniversary, but my refrigerator broke over the weekend and I ended up fixing it myself with the long distance help of my DIY brother and learning how to use a ratchet wrench by YouTube video.  It took me all day to take the thing apart and clean it and put everything back, but this morning it was humming along nicely, so it was worth it.

I am grateful to all the readers who stop by and check out the stories and hopefully are blessed and more informed about the impact of the culture on Christianity and more importantly, how Christianity should impact our culture.

My prayer is that this blog would be used by God to His glory and honor and to further the Gospel message!

Pat Dague

Monday, June 22, 2015

Anglican Unscripted Episode 187

Jun 21, 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://anglican.tv/donate

Seeking Justice in the Wake of Tragedy; Do the Next Thing: A Mother’s Gratitude for Elisabeth Elliot...more

Seeking Justice in the Wake of Tragedy
A horrible tragedy occurred earlier this week, when a young white male walked into Emanuel A.M.E. church in historic Charleston, South Carolina, and killed nine congregation members. Unfortunately, many common responses to the massacre threaten to undermine efforts to seek real, substantive justice.

First, many people have condemned the act as “senseless violence.” Calling the violence “senseless” implies that the shooter did not have moral agency. What occurred on Wednesday night was not “senseless violence”: it was a cold, calculated, act of racial hatred...

Photos: Mourning and forgiveness in Charleston

Jun 19, 2015

Dylann Roof bond hearing. CHARLESTON —‘I forgive you.’ Relatives of Charleston church shooting victims address Dylann Roof The relatives of people slain inside the historic African American church in Charleston, S.C., earlier this week were able to confront the accused gunman Friday at his first court appearance. One by one, those who chose to speak at a bond hearing did not turn to anger. Instead, while he remained impassive, they offered him forgiveness and said they were praying for his soul. I forgive you,” Nadine Collier, the daughter of 70-year-old Ethel Lance, said at the hearing, her voice breaking with emotion. “You took something very precious from me. I will never talk to her again. I will never, ever hold her again. But I forgive you. And have mercy on your soul.”  (What Christian forgiveness looks like...)

Church of England to introduce monthly fast for planet Earth as vicars trained in ‘eco-theology’  The Church of England is to urge worshippers to dedicate the first day of every month to fasting and prayer for planet Earth as part of a major drive to instill green ideas in its followers.

Candidates for ordination as priests are also set to be trained in “eco-theology” while plans are being considered to install solar farms across parts of the Church’s extensive land holdings, in addition to existing wind farms.

Details of the green initiatives emerged in papers sent out to members of the Church’s ruling General Synod, ahead of its annual summer gathering in York next month.
It comes a day after Pope Francis published a long-awaited encyclical on the environment in which he threw the weight of the 1.2 billion-strong Roman Catholic Church behind the fight against climate change and called for fossil fuels to be phased out... (So twisted-whatever happened to prayer and fasting for the purpose of seeking a closer walk with God?) 

Do the Next Thing: A Mother’s Gratitude for Elisabeth Elliot...Here was a woman who knew the Lord. Here was a woman willing to serve the Lord no matter where he called her. Here was a woman who suffered the loss of her young husband as a martyr on the mission field, and then stayed for several years to share the good news of Jesus Christ with the same people who killed her beloved Jim. A few years later, she lost a second husband to cancer. Elisabeth Elliot suffered beyond what I could even have imagined as a wife and mother. And her response to it all? Trust in God, obey him, and do the next thing.

“Do the next thing” became a mantra at our house. My husband and I still use it more than twenty years later to encourage each other. Elisabeth would always have a Scriptural basis for her counsel which was straight-forward, no-nonsense, and unsentimental. It was easy for young, exhausted, me-generation mothers of toddlers to fall into self pity, but each day Elisabeth Elliot would graciously, but firmly, pick me back up. She’d remind me that my lot was a calling from God, and that it was nothing that millions of women hadn’t done before me with fewer resources and conveniences...

How Pixar Enchants Us
...As parents and grownups still vividly in touch with their childhoods, the gifted artists at Pixar know that the most universal chords to be struck revolve around change and its companion that is loss; around innocence and experience; around the necessity of relationships and the inclines and declines of life. And around the fact that Joy leavens our lives, yet Sadness deepens the journey. In striking these chords, Pixar plays an emotional symphony of dualities...  (I'm a Pixar junkie-can't wait to see Inside Out)

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Anglican Unscripted episode 186

Jun 19, 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://anglican.tv/donate

Friday, June 19, 2015

The Falls Church Anglican Buys Property

June 18, 2015
By Nicholas F. Benton

The Falls Church Anglican, the large congregation of defectors from the Episcopal Church denomination who occupied but was eventually forced by the courts to vacate the historic Falls Church site on S. Washington St., has bought a new five-acre location at 6565 Arlington Blvd. within a mile of its former site in Fairfax County. The Rev. John Yates, who led the congregants en masse out of the Episcopal Church in 2006 but occupied the F.C. church property for over six years, announced to his flock last week that the closing on the new property was completed, and now the hurdles associated with permits and licensing from the county will be pursued. The property, on Route 50 at the intersection of S. Cherry Street, is currently home to a four-story commercial office building and a two-story parking deck. Preliminary plans are to demolish the parking deck, build a new one on the other end of the property and construct a new sanctuary building.

Fairfax County’s Mason District Supervisor Penny Gross, who was aware the church group was looking for something in that area, told the News-Press today that “there will be challenges for them” at that site. “There will have to be a close look taken at land use regulations and the business and residential neighbors to the site will have to be consulted,” she said. “Route 50 is a very busy roadway and the impact of traffic of a house of worship there will have to be examined.” She said she will also look at the loss to the county’s tax rolls of having a commercial property convert to a non-profit use... the rest

Jensen rallies Gafcon faithful in Belfast
A meeting of church leaders from across Ireland has been challenged to remain biblically faithful but to ‘dare to do new things’ in the face of a ‘new spiritual darkness’ in the west.

The General Secretary of the Global Anglican Future Conference, Dr Peter Jensen, who addressed the event at Belfast’s Willowfield Church, told the story of GAFCON’s beginnings in the landmark conference of Bishops, clergy and lay leaders in Jerusalem in 2008, through to the Nairobi meeting in 2013 and the movement’s unifying work today across the Anglican world.

“Out of the Conference emerged an historic and noble document, the Jerusalem Statement and Declaration. It made clear that we would not reject the world to live like hermits. It made clear that we wished still to win the world. But it also made clear that the way to do that was not to abandon historic, biblical Christianity but to be true to it and flexible in the in the ways of promoting it.” Dr Jensen said...

Thursday, June 18, 2015

ACNA priest's wife killed in Charleston massacre

18 Jun 2015
by George Conger

Police in North Carolina have detained a 21 year old man, whom they believe responsible for a shooting at a Charleston, South Carolina church that left nine dead, including the wife of an Anglican Church in North America priest.

The Associated Press reports that police have arrested Dylann Roof (21) at a traffic stop in Shelby, North Carolina. Charleston Police Chief Greg Mullen said police had been given a tip as to the suspected killers whereabouts, and added Roof had surrendered to authorities without incident.

On the evening of 17 June 2015 Roof joined a prayer meeting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in Charleston led by the church’s pastor, the Rev. Clementa Pinckney. After watching the service for about an hour, Roof is alleged to have pulled a gun on the congregation and shot Mr. Pinckney and and at all those present. A five year old child survived the shooting by playing dead, Charleston police, reported, while one woman was spared by Roof so that she would tell the world of his deeds.

The Primate of the Anglican Church in North America, the Most Rev. Foley Beach, on 18 June 2015 released a statement asking for prayer for the families of the victims.

Please join me in praying for the Rev. Anthony Thompson, Vicar of Holy Trinity REC (ACNA) Church in Charleston, his family, and their congregation, with the killing of his wife, Myra, in the Charleston shootings last night,” he wrote in a message posted to Facebook.  the rest

Charleston Church Shooting Suspect Is Captured  The man suspected of killing nine people at a prayer meeting at a historic black church in this city’s downtown area was caught on Thursday some 200 miles away in North Carolina, local and federal officials said.

After an intensive, 14-hour manhunt for the man who carried out a massacre that officials are calling racially motivated, Dylann Storm Roof, 21, “was arrested in Shelby, N.C., during a traffic stop” shortly after 11 a.m., said Greg Mullen, the Charleston police chief...
Charleston Shooting Victims Identified

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Here lies the tremendous mystery...

Here lies the tremendous mystery – that God should be all-powerful, yet refuse to coerce. He summons us to cooperation. We are honoured in being given the opportunity to participate in his good deeds. Remember how He asked for help in performing his miracles: Fill the waterpots, stretch out your hand, distribute the loaves. ...Elisabeth Elliot image

Children Asked About Abortion; Egypt’s vanishing youth...more

Apr 27, 2015
What do you think children would say when asked about the reality of abortion? We asked, they responded. Visit http://ofl.link/1b9ZBV2 to learn more about Deliver Us from Abortion or to get involved in protecting and defending the unborn.

Egypt’s vanishing youth  Esraa el-Taweel, 23, went out to dinner with friends on June 1 and has not been seen since. Ms. Taweel, a student and photojournalist who was shot in the spine last year while covering protests on the anniversary of Egypt’s 2011 revolution, is said to have difficulty walking. Her family believes she was forcibly “disappeared” along with two young friends, Sohaib Mohamed and Amr Mohamed.

For days now, the hashtag #forceddisappearance has spread across Egyptian social media, as family and friends look for missing loved ones, mostly young people from across the political spectrum. Some are members of the Muslim Brotherhood, and others are affiliated with the secular April 6 youth movement, while still others are not attached to any movement or party. All are victims of a war on young people, in a country where more than half the population is under 25...

5 Things We’ll Always Cherish about Elisabeth Elliot  Yesterday, one of the most influential Christians of our time, Elisabeth Elliot, died at 88. Elliot was a pioneer in the world of Christian missions, a renowned author and speaker, and a true disciple of Christ. Today, Crosswalk would honor her life and works by reflecting on the many things we’ll always cherish about Elisabeth Elliot...

Teenagers Are Losing Confidence in the American Dream Compared to their counterparts in recent years, high-school seniors in the mid-1990s appeared to have more faith in social mobility and less confidence in the power of having money...

The state of the American mind: Anti-intellectualism in America more than 25 years after Allan Bloom In “The State of the American Mind” (Templeton Press, June 2015), edited by Mark Bauerlein and Adam Bellow, researchers from a wide variety of fields penned essays discussing the decline of American culture and ways of thinking. In a discussion at AEI on Thursday, moderated by Bellow, four of the book’s contributors discussed their essays, presenting evidence of specific trends within this general decline...

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Where does your security lie?

Where does your security lie? Is God your refuge, your hiding place, your stronghold, your shepherd, your counselor, your friend, your redeemer, your saviour, your guide? If He is, you don’t need to search any further for security. 
...Elisabeth Elliot image

Anglican Unscripted Episode 185

June 16, 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://anglican.tv/donate

Aftershock-Nepal; Millennials’ Parents Can’t Stop Meddling...more

Why Bonhoeffer made the sign of the cross  ...This is not some superstitious innovation of the Middle Ages or the empty religiosity Bonhoeffer opposed. It’s a foundational aspect of Christian identity. Making the sign of the cross says to yourself (and anyone watching) that you belong to Jesus, that you belong to God. When faced with temptation, wrestling with a bad attitude, or feeling grateful for the mercies of God, is there anything better?

Identifying as Christian by using the sign of the cross is a physical and demonstrative way to communicate our reliance on God and our identity in Christ...

$o Why Are Pro-Abort$ $o Mad that Abortion Rate$ are Falling You would think the $ky was falling. But it'$ not, it'$ just abortion rate$. $o why are pro-abort$ $o up$et? You'd almo$t think they weren't being hone$t when they $aid they want abortion to be $afe, legal, and rare.

In recent days, there have been numerous articles and op-eds about why the abortion rates are falling. Pro-lifers point to recent pro-life legislation which has passed in many states as well as a burgeoning awareness that there might just be a baby in the womb, rather than a blob of tissue. Spoiler alert - they're right. Those are two very logical reasons. But these reasons are not good enough for pro-aborts.

Millennials’ Parents Can’t Stop Meddling. How Big a Problem Is That?  ...But the most memorable conversation Lythcott-Haims had, to my mind, was with a woman in central Ohio who hires emergency medical technicians for a densely networked ambulance service. By definition, EMTs have to be resourceful, autonomous, and focused in high-stakes situations. Yet in recent years, young applicants have apparently been bringing along their parents even to these job interviews. (Lythcott-Haims then directly quotes the astonished HR director, who says, “It’s clear their parents don’t realize we can overhear them in the waiting area.”)...

Why Is Obama Abandoning 70 Years of U.S. Nonproliferation Policy?  ...The policy that both Democratic and Republican presidents and presidential candidates have supported for the past seven decades is a sensible compromise that encourages the peaceful uses of nuclear technology while managing its proliferation dangers: Countries can operate nuclear reactors for power or research purposes, but they are not permitted to make their own fuel. The vast majority of countries on Earth with nuclear programs do not possess sensitive nuclear facilities. Rather the fuel is provided by a more advanced nuclear power, such as Russia, France, or the United States. This eliminates the need for the spread of dangerous enrichment or reprocessing programs to new countries. Countries like Iran that insist on developing their own sensitive technologies for “peaceful purposes,” therefore, are tipping their hand and revealing a likely intention to build the bomb...

Aftershock: Nepal
This is the aftershock.

Approaching me in the park of tarpaulins and proud of the English she has learned in school, Palistha, 11, says carefully, “Where — are — you — from?” I reply, “Canada,” and anticipate her next question will be, “Where is that?”

But I’m wrong. With wide eyes and a furrowed brow, the little girl asks, “Do you have earthquakes in Canada?” Post-traumatic stress disorder in Nepal is at epic proportions. Like almost everyone else, Palistha and her brother, mother, father and grandmother are too afraid to sleep indoors, preferring the discomfort of crowding into a tarp tent to the palpable danger of another quake. Today, Nepal looks like a house of cards that has collapsed: falling buildings, cracked roads, sagging electrical wires, slanting bridges....

Meet the man whose blood has saved the lives of two million babies ...Doctors then utilized Harrison's blood to develop an injection called Anti-D that prevents women with rhesus-negative blood from developing Rhesus-positive antibodies during pregnancy. The 78-year-old and his blood have been credited with saving the lives of 2 million babies, according to the Australian Red Cross Service.

"Every bag of blood is precious, but [Harrison's] blood is particularly extraordinary," Jemma Falkenmire of the Australian Red Cross Service told CNN. "His blood is actually used to make a life-saving medication, given to moms whose blood is at risk of attacking their unborn babies. Every batch of Anti-D that has ever been made in Australia has come from his blood."

While Harrison's contribution has certainly been immense, doctors are stressing the importance of other donors who may have the same antibody filling his shoes...

Monday, June 15, 2015

The will of God...

The Good Shepherd 109
“The will of God is not something you add to your life. It’s a course you choose. You either line yourself up with the Son of God…or you capitulate to the principle which governs the rest of the world.” ...Elisabeth Elliot image

Elisabeth Elliot 1926-2015

June 15, 2015

A wonderful woman of God.  I've read several of her books and used to listen to her radio program years ago.  I did not know that for the last decade or so she suffered from Alzheimer's. (click on the link for a great article: Alzheimer’s, the Brain, and the Soul)

I thank God for her life and how she was willing to be used by God to minister to so many.

Elisabeth Elliot, 1926-2015

Died: Elisabeth Elliot, Pioneering Missionary and Author, Passes Through Gates of Splendor  One of the most influential Christian women of the 20th century, Elisabeth Elliot, has died.

Elliot, the Christian author and speaker whose husband, Jim, was killed during their missionary service among unreached tribes in eastern Ecuador in the 1950s, passed away Sunday at 88, according to reports. She had been suffering from dementia.
She wrote two books about her husband’s martyrdom and the years she and her newborn daughter spent living among the Aucans, the tribe that killed him. Through the Gates of Splendor and Shadow of the Almighty: The Life and Testimony of Jim Elliot both became bestsellers...

Friday, June 12, 2015

From Evangelical Left to Post Evangelical; NYT: The Child Preachers of Brazil...more

 Biologist in TEDx Talk: Life's "Complex Interacting Molecular Machines" Appear "Built by an Engineer"   (Good talk, Darwinians will not be happy, but no mention of a "Creator", only 'alien' technology...)

Even Materialists Crave Religion ...Transhumanist eschatology contains the Christian element of hope, but its believers expect that man—assisted by artificial intelligent machines, no God needed—will invent the means of attaining an immortal new age. In the transhuman New Jerusalem, we would live for thousands of years, perhaps by sharing uploaded consciousnesses in computer software programs or, if we remain physical, by self-designing our capabilities to resemble the characters in the X-Men comic books. Eventually, according to Princeton biologist Lee Silver in his transhumanist manifesto Remaking Eden (get the title?), humans will become immortal “mental beings”...

“They asked everyone who is Muslim or not”: ISIS kidnaps 86 Eritrean refugees in Libya  ...The refugees were reportedly seized as they were traveling by truck to Tripoli in their quest to reach Europe. At least 12 of those taken were women, and a number of children were also apprehended as well. Estefanos reports that ISIS began dividing those aboard the truck by religion, and some lied in order to save their lives...

Stand Firm: Tony Campolo and Unicorns Trotting Over Rainbows

Tony Campolo and David Neff: From Evangelical Left to Post Evangelical? Can Evangelicals who are liberal politically continue to affirm orthodox Christian teaching about marriage and sex?

Likely the tension will increase as two prominent voices, one a longtime social justice activist, the other a former Christianity Today editor, announced their affirmation of same sex couples.

“I am finally ready to call for the full acceptance of Christian gay couples into the Church,” declared a news release from 80 year old Tony Campolo, a longtime popular speaker, Democratic Party activist and sociology professor at Eastern University in Philadelphia.

Quickly responding to Campolo on Facebook was retired Christianity Today editor David Neff, who cheered: “God bless Tony Campolo. He is acting in good faith and is, I think, on the right track.”

Campolo’s stance was hardly surprising to anyone who’s followed his career, often aligned with Sojourners mobilizer Jim Wallis. Less predictable was the announcement from Neff, although he in recent years became more associated politically with the Evangelical Left...

A Day Late, A Dollar Short
Tony Campolo has become the latest evangelical leader to declare for gay marriage. It is perhaps not a surprise: Campolo has been a gadfly in the evangelical world throughout his career and his adoption of this cause is of a piece with many of his other pronouncements over the years. While his move is unlikely to have a great impact on evangelicalism—far more significant will be the coming shifts on the issue by megachurch pastors—his statement is emblematic of the way evangelical attitudes are likely to change.

What is surprising in the statement is the complete absence of any thoughtful argumentation in his articulation of his position. Though he professes to have heard every kind of biblical argument against same-sex marriage, he does not burden the reader with any of these, or why he has found them so lacking. Instead, he prefers to use straw men, false dichotomies, and the rhetoric of social science to present his case...

8 Keys to Personal Prayer
Prayer is first and foremost a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Some people think of prayer as a business transaction or as something they have to do just like checking something off a to-do list. But that isn't really prayer at all. Think of prayer in intimate terms, like a conversation between close friends. What are some words you think of when you think of an intimate friendship? You probably think of words like loving, caring, warm, sincere, personal and intimate. These are words that should be used to describe our prayer time with the Lord. Prayer should not be dry or stuffy; it should be warm and intimate.

Every believer can have a dynamic personal prayer life. The Bible gives us the keys we need to develop a powerful prayer life. The Scriptures are full of examples of men and women who walked with God and used prayer to impact their world, and you can do the same thing through prayer...

NYT: The Child Preachers of Brazil The youngest evangelists in the country’s Pentecostal churches try to balance the demands of their youth with those of their faith...

Bugs swarm memorial service for 'Gosnell babies'
The babies killed by Kermit Gosnell died in an unimaginably evil way: Born live in botched, illegal, late-term abortions, they were murdered by a depraved doctor and his untrained staff who used scissors to snip their spinal cords even as they began to wriggle and cry.

So perhaps it's fitting that a memorial service Wednesday at Laurel Hill Cemetery in East Falls where the so-called Gosnell babies now are buried was accompanied by a plague of locusts. Or rather, a swarm of flying ants.

"It's almost demonic how they all showed up right now, isn't it?" whispered one mourner, pinching one flying ant between his fingers as another alighted on his neck...

When the Insane Are Normal, the Normal Are Insane    The wave of media cheerleading for Bruce Jenner’s splashy debut as Caitlyn Jenner, his new putatively female identity, is one of those moments that has a lot of us of looking around and wondering if the whole world has gone insane.

Obviously, Bruce Jenner is not a woman. But the fact that so many people want us to think this is true, and that they appear to want to believe it themselves, is ominous...

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Pastor Saeed Abedini 'Viciously Beaten' in Iranian Prison; USAF and transgenders...more

Pastor Saeed Abedini 'Viciously Beaten' in Iranian Prison, Told His Only Way Out Is to Deny Jesus Christ  American pastor Saeed Abedini has reportedly been "viciously beaten" by fellow prisoners in an unprovoked attack in the Iranian prison where he's being held. The pastor was punched in the face, leaving his eyes beaten black and blue, but prison

The American Center for Law and Justice, the law group which represents his wife, Naghmeh Abedini, and the couple's two children in the U.S., said that the prisoners also demolished a small table that the pastor had used to study and read during the beating that he endured last week...

United States Air Force Enters New Era For Transgenders ...Nevertheless, while Russian bombers have substantially increased the number of times they are “buzzing” American airspace and testing our defenses this year (along with those of a number of European nations), the United States Air Force has now developed a winning strategy. Mind you, not a strategy to counteract Russian bomber incursions or for the defeat of ISIS, but rather, our Air Force has now officially eased its discharge policy on transgenders in conjunction with “Gay Pride Month.” Under the leadership of Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, who has long supported “gender confused” airpersons to serve, high-ranking Air Force officials will decide the fate of known transgenders in their ranks, and an objective medical diagnosis will no longer suffice to trigger automatically a service member’s discharge. Senior officers are now free to keep open transgenders in their units, despite the fact that this violates military policy...

“Our Father” or Fairy God Mother?  ...Ultimately, this is an attempt by some in the Church of England to allow human beings to define God as they see fit. This is an inversion of the creation formula itself. God is the potter and we are the clay (Isaiah 64:8), not vice versa (Isaiah 29:16). One can only pray that this initiative to have the liturgy address God in a manner contrary to His will fails to receive the approval of the General Synod. Should they succeed, God’s name will be denigrated and women will be robbed of an image of a loving father.

Calvin and Hobbes Original.png
Calvin And Hobbes embodied the voice of the lonely child ...Calvin didn’t have trouble focusing on the world around him, he had trouble reconciling himself to the fact that the world around him was such a disappointment. The reason the strip appealed to people both young and old is because Calvin was feeling underwhelmed at a college graduate level. It’s not unheard of for children to experience this, particularly those who are more sensitive to their surroundings, and for many it was a relief to know that seeing the world without the luster and facade constantly created for us wasn’t so unusual. Calvin made it okay to be disheartened and disappointed by life and normalized the inherent loneliness that childhood can bring. He was there for us as we grew up and while we learned that things were capable of getting so much better and so much worse as we experienced puberty and beyond, he was still mired in the first grade, raging against the machine...

Albert Mohler: Which Way, Evangelicals? There is Nowhere to Hide

June 10, 2015

That first issue of Christianity Today registered significant concerns about the trajectory of Christianity in America. Secularism was already the prevailing worldview in some elite circles of the culture, and those who founded Christianity Today did so, in large part, to establish a conservative counter-voice to the liberal magazine, the Christian Century.

Christianity Today has exerted a significant influence among American evangelicals since that first issue was published. But, as University of California at Berkeley historian David Hollinger has noted, “the fact remains that the public life of the United States moved farther in the directions advocated in 1960 by the Christian Century than in the directions then advocated by Christianity Today.”
If anything, that is an understatement.

Suffice it to say that the founders of Christianity Today did not have the legalization of same-sex marriage on their radar. They did not even have a vocabulary that would define it.

Tony Campolo’s announcement this week that he is “finally ready to call for the full acceptance of Christian gay couples into the Church” hardly registered as a thunderclap. Campolo, long proudly identified with the evangelical Left, acknowledged in his statement that his previous answer to the question “has always been somewhat ambiguous.” Nevertheless, Campolo’s direction was clear. His wife and the organization he leads have both called for the legalization of same-sex marriage, and Campolo’s announcement came as no surprise to anyone who had followed his statements in recent years.   the rest
In this season of testing, Christians committed to the gospel of Christ are called upon to muster the greatest display of compassion and conviction of our lives. But true compassion will never lead to an abandonment of biblical authority or a redefinition of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

A.S. Haley: Bishop Iker and His Diocese Win All Saints Fort Worth Case

June 10, 2015

News has just been received that Bishop Iker and his Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth are the victors in the separately-tried lawsuit to determine the ownership of the grounds and property of All Saints, Fort Worth.

Judge John Chupp of the Tarrant County District Court had severed off the All Saints case, because its facts were more dependent on documents and circumstances that were not shared with all the other parishes in dispute. As I wrote in an earlier post:
My understanding is that Bishop Iker’s diocesan corporation does hold title to the two parcels of real property on which the church and the main accessory buildings of All Saints are situated. However, the parish in the intervening years acquired several parcels of nearby property to make more room. Of these, three are held simply in the name of the parish itself, while one (used for a curate’s home) was acquired in the name of the parish corporation, despite the provisions of Canon 31 linked above. (The church also uses another parcel about 7 miles away for “All Saints School.” The school is run as a separate corporation, and its ownership of the property is not at issue in the lawsuit.)
The case ended up being resolved on a motion for summary judgment, instead of being tried to a jury. (Both sides filed motions, which meant that they agreed there were no disputed facts to be tried.) Bishop Iker’s motion and supporting papers are here; the opposition papers do not appear to be online, and the reply papers are here. At the hearing on the motion held today before Judge Chupp, he granted judgment to Bishop Iker and his Diocese... the rest

Anglican Unscripted Episode 184

June 10, 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://anglican.tv/donate

Monday, June 08, 2015

The Fallen of World War II

The Fallen of World War II from Neil Halloran on Vimeo.

An animated data-driven documentary about war and peace, The Fallen of World War II looks at the human cost of the second World War and sizes up the numbers to other wars in history, including trends in recent conflicts.

Sunday, June 07, 2015

A.S. Haley: Making a Mishmash of Marriage.......Part III

June 4, 2015

In Part I of this series, I showed that the attempt by General Convention in 2012 to authorize, sub rosa, same-sex marriages without bothering first to change the canons or the Book of Common Prayer led to widespread disciplinary violations by clergy in those States that recognized those unions.

In Part II, I outlined the inadequacies of two current proposals to cure the canonical dilemma: Resolutions 2015-A036 and 2015-A054. Taken together as offered, they would eliminate the traditional equation of marriage to Holy Matrimony as celebrated in the BCP, and render the concept of “marriage” virtually meaningless—the proposed rites for same-gender marriage run the gamut from invoking blessings, to becoming “bound to one another”, to being “married according to the laws of the State of X.”, to being “wed to one another,” to being “ever hereafter United in Matrimony” [sic]. Nothing could better indicate the inability of this generation to perceive its roots than this smorgasbord of two-person hookups offered to all and sundry.

This is what comes of acting first and thinking later. “We can, and should, do same-sex marriages NOW—let’s worry about justifying it down the road.” (This impetus appears to have been behind the unquestioning adaptation [see below] of the BCP liturgy for Holy Matrimony to same-gender marriages. According to the Supplemental Materials of the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music, “a number of respondents expressed frustration or confusion that the [original draft] liturgy appeared to be a ‘separate but equal’ rite, which therefore was not equivalent to marriage” (p. 5 at the link; italics added).... the rest

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Some people have a warped idea of living the Christian life...

Buttercup Farm
Some people have a warped idea of living the Christian life. Seeing talented, successful Christians, they attempt to imitate them. For them, the grass on the other side of the fence is always greener. But when they discover that their own gifts are different or their contributions are more modest (or even invisible), they collapse in discouragement and overlook genuine opportunities that are open to them. They have forgotten that they are here to serve Christ, not themselves. ...Billy Graham image

Ten fascinating facts on the 71st anniversary of D-Day

 June 6, 2015

On June 6, 1944, about 150,000 troops stormed the beaches of France in the epic D-Day invasion that proved pivotal to the Allied war effort. But how did the idea originate and how did the Allies pull off such a huge task?

The numbers involved in the Normandy landings are still staggering today, and unlikely to be seen again in a modern age of combat. Here are a few of the numbers, and some fascinating facts about this historic event. the rest  image 

The Problem with Celebrity Seeking...more

Churches embracing homosexuality prepare members to accept the Anti-Christ: Russian Orthodox leader   Churches that have deemed homosexuality morally acceptable have rejected Christianity and are preparing their followers to accept the Anti-Christ, according to one of the leading figures in the Russian Orthodox Church.

His statement came as the Russian Orthodox Church announced that it is ending "formal contacts" with the United Protestant Church of France and the Church of Scotland over those churches' abandonment of traditional Christian sexual morality. In its statement, the church said ecumenical dialogue was pointless after France's United Protestant Church last month voted to allow pastors to officiate at same-sex "marriages" and the Church of Scotland approved ordaining clergy who are in same-sex civil unions.

"The Russian Orthodox Church holds the firm position based on Holy Scriptures and has repeatedly declared that [homosexual 'marriage' is] inadmissible for moral teaching," the statement reads. Churches that offer to "marry" homosexuals "trample upon the principles of traditional Christian morality."...

Tim Keller: The Bible and Same-Sex Relationships: A Review Article      The relationship of homosexuality to Christianity is one of the main topics of discussion in our culture today. In the fall of 2013 I wrote a review of books by Wesley Hill and Sam Allberry that take the historic Christian view, in Hill’s words, that “homosexuality was not God’s original creative intention for humanity . . . and therefore that homosexual practice goes against God’s express will for all human beings, especially those who trust in Christ.”

There are a number of other books that take the opposite view, namely that the Bible either allows for or supports same-sex relationships. Over the last year or so I (and other pastors at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City) have been regularly asked for responses to their arguments. The two most-read volumes taking this position seem to be those by Matthew Vines and Ken Wilson. The review of these two books will be longer than usual because the topic is so contested today and, while I disagree with the authors’ theses, a too-brief review can’t avoid appearing cursory and dismissive. Hence the length....

The Duggars, Bruce ‘Caitlyn’ Jenner and the Problem with Celebrity Seeking  Famous figures Josh Duggar and Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner have captured the nation’s headlines. Duggar’s molestation of his sisters and a babysitter during his childhood is discovered. Jenner’s transition from one gender identity to another is revealed. Both news stories unfolded right before our eyes. Both capture our fascination. Both bait our mouse clicks, every time. Why?...

100 Days: State Dept. Sets Record for Violating Deadline for Human Rights Reports   ...
Prior to this year, 89 days was the longest the department went past the legal deadline before releasing the reports. The 89-day delay took place in 2012, when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state.

As the post-deadline delay in the release of the human rights reports hit its 100th day today, the State Department was finding time to celebrate an event it billed as "Pride at State."

That event, scheduled for 2:00 p.m., will feature remarks by Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources Heather Higginbottom and has been jointly organized by the department itself and GLIFAA, which State says is "the officially recognized employee affinity group representing LGBTI employees at the Department of State, USAID and foreign affairs agencies."...

Friday, June 05, 2015

11 Year Time-lapse Movie of One World Trade Center

May 28, 2015

In recognition of the opening of One World Observatory in New York City, we have released a special edition of our One World Trade Center video. Watch and share this commemorative time-lapse showing the building progress from October 2004 to Memorial Day 2015. Over the past 11 years, EarthCam’s construction cameras captured hundreds of thousands of high definition images and our Creative Team hand-edited the footage to create this exclusive movie.

Produced and Directed by Brian Cury, EarthCam's CEO and Founder, "It's our mission to continue to document this for future generations, so people can see what it took to rebuild these important 16 acres."

Church of England bans lobby groups from interfering over women bishops

Ruth Gledhill
05 June 2015

Lobby groups and special interest organisations in the Church of England will be barred from complaining about clergy or bishops over the new rules on male and female bishops.

With three women bishops appointed including one diocesan, Ven Rachel Treweek, soon to take up her appointment as Bishop of Gloucester, congregations that oppose women's ordination can on grounds of theological conviction seek oversight from a male bishop.

An independent reviewer, Sir Philip Mawer, has already been appointed to resolve disputes over the process and in a consultation published this week he makes it clear that it is the concerns of individual parishes and not church lobby groups or individuals that will be his main concern.

"In considering a grievance, it is the concerns of the parish as expressed by the PCC, not the concerns of any third party, which will be paramount," he writes. And while parochial church councils are allowed to consult groups for advice, "interested third parties should not seek to interpose their views on those of the PCC," Sir Philip writes... the rest

UK Anglicans are in serious decline, say researchers The decline in the proportion of British people who identify as Anglican has accelerated in the past decade, new analysis from NatCen statisticians suggests.

The proportion who say they are Anglican in the British Social Attitudes survey has fallen from 40 per cent in 1983 to 17 per cent in 2014. In the past decade, the proportion has fallen by two-fifths: from 28 per cent in 2004.

The researchers say that the survey results suggest that the number of Anglicans has fallen by as many as 4.5 million over the past ten years, from about 13 million to 8.5 million.

The biggest group remains those who say they have no religion: 49 per cent, up from 43 per cent in 2004 and 31 per cent in 1983.

Other Christian denominations have remained stable over the past 30 years. Roman Catholics make up eight per cent of the sample, down from ten per cent in 1983. The "Other Christian" sector has remained static at 17 per cent...

Former Episcopal Bishop Trial Postponed Until September  Heather Cook, the former episcopal bishop accused of driving under the influence and killing a local cyclist in December was set to face a judge Thursday morning, but instead the trial was postponed...

New Round of Christian Persecution in Iran; People Who Cut Off Their Own Limbs; Emotions Of Pixar...more

Emotions Of Pixar from Lindsay McCutcheon on Vimeo.
(Go full screen if you can)

New Round of Christian Persecution in Iran ...But in the midst of these major political issues, a number of media reports in recent days have confirmed that Iran’s revolutionary courts have sentenced at least 18 Christian converts to prison for their faith in a new crackdown on Christian believers. The charges include evangelism, “propaganda” against the regime, and creating house churches. Due to the lack of transparency in Iran’s judicial system, the Christians were sentenced to a total of 24 years, but it is unclear how many years of prison was received by each Christian. However, it is important to note that in the past, initial prison sentences have been extended indefinitely. This group of Christians, many of whom were arrested in 2013, were sentenced to prison based upon Article 500 of the Islamic Penal Code, which provides, “Anyone who engages in any type of propaganda against the Islamic Republic of Iran or in support of opposition groups and associations, shall be sentence to three months to one year of imprisonment.” Obviously, this provision is quite vague and a bit of a catch-all...

Iran Sentences 18 Christians to Prison for Faith in Christianity Crackdown

Kenya: Almost 100 schools forced to close as Christian teachers fear al-Shabaab attacks  ...Jacob Kaimenyi, cabinet secretary for Kenya's Ministry of Education, said that at least 95 public schools have closed indefinitely, and almost another 500 could face the same fate as more than 2,000 teachers have refused to go back to work.

Although the public schools have had to close, Alessandro said the church schools are trying to stay open, even though they have fewer students and teachers...

Suspected Chinese Hackers Stole Data of Millions of US Federal Workers  U.S. officials said hackers in China launched a massive cyberattack on the federal agency responsible for collecting background information on, and issuing security clearances for millions of government employees...

4 million fed workers victimized by hack  ...Administration officials held a conference call Thursday night with federal employee unions to discuss the breach, a few hours after they initially notified the unions of the incident.

“It is vital to know as soon as possible the extent to which, if any, personal information may have been obtained so that affected employees can be notified promptly and encouraged to take all possible steps to protect themselves from financial or other risks,” said Colleen Kelley, national president of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU), which represent 150,000 employees across 31 federal agencies and departments.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee, called the cyberattack "among the most shocking" of the recent digital intrusions that have felled government networks.

In the last year, hackers have compromised the White House, State Department, the U.S. weather system and the U.S. Postal Service...
Federal Judge Orders Expungement of Teen's Record Who Evangelized in School   ...Michael Leal, a senior at Cascade High School, was suspended in 2014 for sharing his faith with other students. He gave out biblical literature and sometimes preached at school events.

In early September 2014, Leal gave out copies of “How to Know God” during the lunch period. He was taken to the principal’s office and warned that his actions could be offensive.

The next month, Leal handed out tracts during the school’s “bonfire bash.” He also preached until the principal asked him to stop. He did not and the next day he was suspended...

Vatican and Pat Robertson Agree: Don’t Play ‘Charlie, Charlie’
...In April and May, American teens embraced the game and spread it quickly through social media and online video, receiving millions of views on YouTube. It has also gone viral through the hashtag #CharlieCharlieChallenge, receiving more than 1.6 million tweets in recent weeks. This prompted religious leaders from the Vatican, the Bahamas to the Virginia Beach studios of 700 Club televangelist Pat Robertson to condemn the game as a “demonic” summoning of spirits.

“Demons are real. They are not playthings and they are certainly not parlor games. For any little kids to begin to play these games and think it’s cool, it’s not,” Robertson said. “I know what the Bible says about it, but I am just telling you what I am saying about it—they are real. They desire to destroy human beings.”...

People Who Cut Off Their Own Limbs (and Their Enablers) This phenomenon — known in the medical literature as Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID) — is well documented, if not well understood. Some researchers believe the causes are primarily psychological (e.g. the inexplicable idealization, as a child, of an amputee); others blame physiology (a failure of the brain’s body-mapping function to develop properly, causing a limb to seem as if it is not part of the body)...

Thursday, June 04, 2015

The conviction of His Spirit...

God will never plant the seed of his life upon the soil of a hard, unbroken spirit. He will only plant that seed where the conviction of His Spirit has brought brokenness, where the soil has been watered with the tears of repentance as well as the tears of joy. ...Alan Redpath image