Friday, August 26, 2005

Church trial of pro-Mugabe bishop collapses

[] August 26, 2005-- A Malawian Supreme Court judge refused to continue presiding over an ecclesiastic court investigating charges against an Anglican bishop ranging from besmirching the church to incitement to murder.

Related article:
Trial of Harare bishop collapses in farce - The Telegraph

The High Life of Florida Bishop Samuel Johnson Howard

[VirtueOnline] August 25, 2005--The Bishop of Florida, the Rt. Rev. Samuel Johnson Howard, barely 18 months into his new job, has been raising and spending tens of thousands of dollars, including the purchase of a million dollar home for him and his wife.

Rick Warren: The Episcopal Church Should Welcome You!

[VirtueOnline] August 25, 2005--My jaw dropped when I heard the news. Just days ago I heard that Rick Warren, of Saddleback Church fame...and Purpose Driven Life fame...was coming to a conference for the Anglican Communion Network. (November 10-12 in Pittsburgh) When my friend mentioned that Warren was headlining the conference, I thought "How did they get him to even look twice at the invitation?" Some, who live under rocks and beneath bridges might not know who this Baptist, Hawaiian shirted pastor is. Some, like the uninformed David Virtue, have criticized it unfairly. But I think it is a tremendous achievement...and I hope he shakes things up. (I am out of the country on those dates; otherwise I would most certainly be there.)

The Virgin Birth

[VirtueOnline] August 25, 2005--My first Advent in parish ministry, I learned a lesson about a central mystery of the faith. I preached a sermon suggesting that "whatever one may conclude about the historical fact of the Virgin Birth, the important thing is what it points to: the Incarnation of Jesus Christ." After the sermon, the senior warden came up to me and said he was disturbed by my words: "Without the Virgin Birth," he said, "there would be no Incarnation."

Patterson: Ministers may face opposition within churches

[Baptist Press] August 25, 2005--Ministers attempting to fulfill the Great Commission may face opposition in their ministry, and it may come from within their own congregations, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary President Paige Patterson said during the Fort Worth seminary’s fall convocation Aug. 18.

A Christian Case for Gay Marriage?

[] August 26, 2005--The mainline Protestant denominations continue to debate the question of homosexuality in extended and excruciatingly inconclusive controversy. In one sense, these liberal denominations are caught in a bind. Their members at the grassroots level, along with those pastors and church leaders who hold to orthodox doctrine and biblical concepts of sexuality, will not accept an embrace of same-sex marriage or the ordination of practicing homosexuals. A residue of biblical commitment prevents these denominations from an open embrace of what scripture so clearly condemns. On the other hand, the liberal elites in control of the seminaries, institutions, and bureaucracies of these denominations are generally committed to revisionist understandings of theology, sexuality, and church doctrine.

“Civil Unions Do Not Belong in Constitution” Emphasizes US Pro-Family Group

[] August 25, 2005--The Massachusetts legislature has set September 14 as the date for a debate on a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex “marriage,” which proposes that “marriage” be replaced with a nearly identical institution – civil unions. A pro-family coalition opposed to the compromise measure is calling on concerned individuals to contact their Senators and Representatives to oppose the proposed amendment.

Related article: Marriage Debate to Continue in Massachusetts - The Christian Post

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Pro-Mugabe bishop's trial hits a snag

[Mail & Guardian Online] August 25, 2005--The trial in Zimbabwe of a controversial Anglican bishop hit a snag on Thursday when defence lawyers requested further particulars on the charges he faces.

Church's anti-war paintings draw fire

[Spero News] August 24, 2005--Angry e-mailers and callers to Saint Paul's Episcopal church in Norwalk, Connecticut have repeatedly invoked 9-11 in response to articles about their new stations of the cross. Conservative Christians have denounced the paintings as a political statement inappropriate for a house of worship.

Archbishop Malango Postpones Court of Confirmation

[VirtueOnline] August 24, 2005--I have just written to Nicholas that as the Archbishop who will be performing the consecration I will need, as for any candidate assurance on three points....

Apb. Malango questions CofE priest's fitness for new Bishop role

[VirtueOnline] August 24, 2005--It has been reported that you currently live with (or have in the past lived with) a male "lodger". Because of reports of your advocacy of the gay and lesbian movement I am constrained to ask a very awkward question. Are you prepared to assure me and the members and leaders of the church in this province that your conduct conforms to the historic teaching of the church that sexual intimacy is restricted to be within the marriage of one man and one woman, intended as a lifelong union, and that you are not in (nor have you been in) a sexual relationship outside marriage? Is there anything I should know that would make my work difficult if you took up this position?

Clergy and Church Members in the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut File Formal Charges Against Bishop Andrew Smith

[American Anglican Council] August 24, 2005--Nineteen Episcopal lay leaders and priests in Connecticut have officially charged Andrew Smith, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut, under provisions of canon [church] law. The notification of charges was sent Monday to Frank Griswold, Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church USA (ECUSA).

Related article:
Episcopal Leaders Bring Charges Against Bishop Smith in Connecticut - Christianity Today UK

Michael Green's US mission

[The Church of England Newspaper] August 26, 2005--Michael Green, one of the Anglican Church’s leading evangelists, is to head an American parish that has broken ties with the Episcopal Church (ECUSA) over the consecration of a gay bishop. The former evangelism advisor to Archbishops of Canterbury and York will be taking up the post of co-rector of Holy Trinity Church in Raleigh, North Carolina. Last year, several dozen members of Raleigh’s Christ Church quit ECUSA after becoming disaffected with the support of their bishop, the Rt Rev Michael Curry, for the consecration of Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire.

Campaign to make churches friendlier

[The Church of England Newspaper] August 26, 2005--Churches are being sent a DVD featuring the unlikely combination of Mr Bean with their bishop, urging them to use original ideas to get people back to church. Most people who have left church have “just drifted away”, according to a new survey, which found that a majority of churches are unfriendly to outsiders. However, the Bishop of Manchester, the Rt Rev Nigel McCulloch, is heading a campaign that aims to reach out to those who have drifted away.

More articles from The Church of England Newspaper can be found at

Robertson Apologizes for Chavez Assassination Remarks

[] August 25, 2005-- Christian broadcaster Pat Robertson apologized Wednesday for calling on the U.S. to assassinate Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, stating that he "spoke in frustration" regarding "the war of terror being waged against civilized nations throughout the world."

The Ripple Effect of Sexual Impurity

[] August 25, 2005--It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. — 1 Thessalonians 4:3-6

In the above verses, Paul tells us we should learn to control our bodies in a way that is holy and honorable. Notice the phrase "learn to control." Sanctification is a process. This side of heaven, we will never reach perfection. In fact, those who expect or think that sanctification is intstant will be disappointed and perhaps will give in to temptation after losing a few battles. Instead, sanctification always moves forward – sometimes even after a fall and quick repentenance. The falls are never acceptable in God's sight, but quick repentance puts us back on the path of sanctification.

Leaders Ministering to Homosexuals React to Media Coverage

[The Christan Post] August 25, 2005--Major American media outlets have recently covered the ex-homosexual ministry as an alternative perspective on the controversial issue of whether one is born gay.

Non-Orthodox Christians in Russia Face Ongoing Discriminations

[The Christian Post] August 25, 2005--Two sources recently reported on the restriction imposed upon Protestant churches’ constitutional rights in Russia.

Come, Lord Jesus—But Not Too Soon

[] August 25, 2005--Jesus came back on a Saturday night. Mike and I were sitting in his car after the prayer meeting, discussing the return of Christ, and had just observed that it could happen that very night. The remark had not been prompted by any singular event or sign. We said the same thing every Saturday night.

Wash. state awaits 'gay marriage' decision; it could become 2nd state to redefine marriage

[Baptist Press] August 24, 2005--Homosexual activists, on the defensive since the November election, could receive a boost in coming days when the Washington state Supreme Court hands down a much-anticipated "gay marriage" decision.

Aruba Forced to Acknowledge Gay “Marriage” by Courts

[] August 24, 2005--A lesbian couple “married” in the Netherlands in 2001 won a fight to have their same-sex relationship recognized by the government of Aruba Tuesday. Aruba’s Superior Court denied the government’s appeal of a lower court ruling, despite widespread opposition to the homosexual lifestyle on the island and in the Caribbean region in general.

Hong Kong Judge Declares Anti-Sodomy Laws Unconstitutional

[] August 24, 2005--Judicial activism used to overturn legislation in yet another international jurisdiction.

'Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman' Bumper Sticker Leads to Demotion - Lawsuit

[] August 24, 2005--A computer technician has filed a federal lawsuit in Orange County after being reprimanded and demoted for expressing his support for traditional marriage. The employee is represented by Pacific Justice Institute and PJI affiliate attorney Laurie Messerly.

US Funding for Abstinence Program Temporarily Suspended After ACLU Court Challenge

[] August 24, 2005--Federal Funding for an abstinence-only campaign has been temporarily withheld, following a pro-abortion group’s legal challenge.

Related article:
Teen Abstinence Program Funding Suspended for 'Religious Activities' - The Christian Post

Canadians for Renewal Organizes All Night Prayer Vigils For Repentance And Conversion

[] August 24, 2005--With the moral degeneration of Canada having reached the deepest, most discouraging low yet with the recent legalization of homosexual "marriage", many Canadians are wondering what can be done to check the advance of our cultural meltdown.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Anglican Church declares war on nakedness

[Church of Nigeria News] August 22, 2005--Wife of the Primate of the Anglican Communion, Nigeria, Mrs. Susan Akinola, has said that it was time for everyone to join hands to stem the spate of indecent dressing, especially among the youth.

Anglican Church puts Mugabe bishop on trial

[] August 24, 2005--One of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s favourite bishops has been accused of a range of crimes, including incitement to murder. He will now face a trial convened by the Anglican Church of Central Africa under canon law. Bishop of Harare, Norbert Kunonga, the first Anglican priest in Africa in more than 100 years to face trial by his spiritual masters, is accused of sinning against the church, its officials and its flock. If found guilty by three judges, including two African bishops, the controversial prelate could be excommunicated and might even face civil charges if allegations of missing church funds are proved. The first of 11 charges against Kunonga was temporarily withdrawn yesterday. It alleged that he sought the assistance of Mugabe’s Central Intelligence Organisation and militant “war veterans” to “incite or seek to incite” the murder of 10 prominent Anglicans, including priests and church wardens.

Related article:
Church court puts Mugabe bishop on trial - The Telegraph
Harare bishop risks being excommunicated - IOL

Church in frenzy: A long tradition

[The Washington Examiner] August 24, 2005--While reporting for a new book, I enjoyed looking back at the long slide of that train wreck known as the Episcopal Church, which is by now a mere postage stamp of a religion, claiming allegiance, by one estimate, of a walloping 0.78 percent of the American public. Despite its micro-membership, the Episcopal Church is often in the headlines.

SBC president underscores prayer versus assassination

[Baptist Press News] August 23, 2005--Pat Robertson’s call for the assassination of Venezuela’s president has prompted the president of the Southern Baptist Convention to distance the SBC from remarks Robertson made on his Aug. 22 “700 Club” telecast.

Making evangelism good news again

[Baptist Press News] August 23, 2005--John Avant and I had heard the "all-religions-are-basically-the-same" comment at least 100 times before. This time, Austin, our waiter, was passing this tidbit of conventional wisdom onto us with sage-like seriousness -- like a treasure hunter who had just discovered the mother lode.

Small Groups Give Every Member Personal Care and Attention

[The Christian Post] August 20, 2005--How do you maintain that “small church” feeling of fellowship as your church grows? This is one of the biggest fears members have about growth. The answer is two words: affinity groups. Affinity groups can provide the personal care and attention every member deserves, no matter how big your church becomes.

Kenyan Christians Oppose Bid to Formalize Shari'a Law

[] August 24, 2005--Kenyan Christian leaders are urging their congregations to oppose a forthcoming vote on a new constitution for the East African nation because the proposed document gives recognition to Islamic (shari'a) law.

A Newer Kind of Nazi, but Nazi Nonetheless

[] August 24, 2005--What the pan-Islamic movement shares with other 20th-century totalitarian cults such as Nazism and Communism is nihilism. In contrast to Judaism and Christianity, which teach that all men are made in the image and likeness of God, these cults acknowledge no moral law that forbids a man from treating another (or by extension, himself) as if he were nothing.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Kenyan Churches Unite to Oppose Historic New Constitution

[Christianity Today UK] August 23, 2005--Mainstream Christian Churches in Kenya are rising up to reject the Country's Revised Constitution - the Wako Draft which began print today under heavy security.

Proposed constitution elevates Islam over other religions in Kenya.

Viewpoint: Pope sets out vision for Papacy

[Belfast Telegraph] August 23, 2005--Pope Benedict may not have the natural charisma of his predecessor, but he showed on his four-day visit to Germany that he is much more than the stern intellectual that some critics have held him to be.

Benedict nixs spirituality du jour.

Heavy metal fan who torched church shows no remorse

[The Daily Telegraph] August 23, 2005--A heavy metal fan who torched a century-old church had no remorse because the band he listened to preached that regret was weak, a court was told today.

Our brave new world!

Pro-Mugabe bishop faces charges in court

[Mail & Guardian Online] August 23, 2005--An Anglican bishop who is a strong supporter of autocratic President Robert Mugabe has been brought before an ecclesiastical court investigating charges ranging from inciting murder to besmirching the church.

A Plea to All ECUSA Members: "We are at a Crossroads"

[Anglican Communion Institute] August 22, 2005--As President, Executive Director, and Collegial Theologians of ACI, and on behalf of our co-workers, we want to express our thanks to all who have supported our work with prayer, counsel and financial gifts.

California Court Grants Equal Parent Status to Homosexuals

[The Christian Post] August 23, 2005--The California Supreme Court on Monday ruled that homosexuals who decide to raise children together should be given full rights as parents.

Newsweek's Search for Spirituality

[] August 23, 2005--This week's issue of Newsweek magazine features an extensive series of reports on American spirituality. Taken together, these articles demonstrate something of the eclecticism, superficiality, and diversity of the American spiritual scene. For evangelical Christians, the article should serve an important purpose by helping us to understand the current contours of our mission field right at home.

Editorial: The Fate of Iraqi Christians

[Breaking Point] August 23, 2005--As if sectarian divisions and murderous insurgency weren't enough, the drafters of Iraq's new constitution have a new foe to worry about: Mother Nature. A recent meeting of the various factions drafting the document had to be postponed because of a blinding sandstorm. But that's neither the only nor the most damaging storm likely to be associated with this constitution.

Newport Beach ECUSA Dissenters Can Keep Church Property

[Agape Press] August 23, 2005--A judge has ruled that the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles cannot confiscate the property of an orthodox parish that left the denomination over the ordination of an openly homosexual bishop.

Gay “Marriage” Rejected in Former Dutch Caribbean Colony

[] August 22, 2005--Public opposition to the homosexual movement and “gay marriage” is still powerful in some “traditional” societies. In Aruba, a small Caribbean former Dutch colony, sentiment against homosexual or other deviant “lifestyles” is vehemently opposed by the public whose cultural roots are more in tune with Latin American culture than with that of the modern Dutch. A lesbian “couple” Charlene and Esther Oduber-Lamers, who were “married” in the Netherlands are attempting to use the tried and true method of judicial activism to force acceptance of homosexual unions in Aruba, a country that is 80% Catholic.

Gay Activist Web Site Posting Threatens Ex-Homosexual, Christians, with “elimination”

[] August 22, 2005--An ex-homosexual who believes God has called him to preach against what he was once a slave to – the homosexual lifestyle and everything associated with it – is now the victim of threatening messages from a San Diego-based homosexual activist web site, which called for his “elimination” and the elimination of other Christians like him.

Monday, August 22, 2005

God at Military Academies Invited Back

[] August 22, 2005--Why not the right to pray voluntarily at military school events?

Apostate 'Church" Spreads AIDS

[] August 22, 2005--Homosexual activity spreads disease. Oral and anal sex are exceptionally popular in homosexual practice. This kind of physical interplay fosters all sorts of sickness, especially AIDS.

Pope Speaks Vs. Muslim Silence

[] August 22, 2005--Pope Benedict XVI urges Muslim leadership to speak out against Muslim murderers global. Good. That’s the Roman Catholic voice speaking forcefully to a silent Muslim "leadership."

Where is the liberal Protestant voice in all this Islamic mayhem? Silent, just as the Muslim "leadership."

Putting the Screws to the Orthodox

[VirtueOnline] August 21, 2005--You won't hear the words, 'go in peace to love and serve the Lord' from the lips of revisionist bishops when it comes to orthodox parishes and their priests who want alternative episcopal oversight.

"The screws" are thumb screws, a means of torture used at various times in history.

Couple Will Wed, but Not at Their Church

[The Washington Post] August 21, 2005--Last summer, a serendipitous encounter with a young, vivacious minister in Birkenstocks helped a Woodbridge couple find a church for their wedding ceremony. Their own church said no way.

Anglicans have betrayed the Jews

[Israpundit] August 21, 2005--The Chief Rabbi, Dr Jonathan Sacks, stated three years ago that: "Anti-Semitism exists . . . whenever two contradictory factors appear in combination: the belief that Jews are so powerful that they are responsible for the evils of the world, and the knowledge that they are so powerless that they can be attacked with impunity" (lecture to the Inter-Parliamentary Committee against Anti-Semitism, 28 February 2002).

On Civil Partnerships

[Diocese of Worcester] August 19, 2005--As the Bishops' pastoral statement on the Civil Partnerships Act went through its process of preparation, I found it necessary on more than one occasion to make it clear that it was unlikely to turn out in a form with which I could associate myself (News, 29 July).

Related articles:
Bishop of Worcester supports gay civil partnerships - ekklesia
Bishop: Why are gay people not included in debate? -

Court Upholds Constitutionality of Ten Commandments Display

[The Christian Post] August 21, 2005--A federal appeals court upheld the public display of a Ten Commandments monument in a Nebraskan city park on Friday, in the first Ten Commandments case following recent rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Bank Freezes Accounts of St. John’s, Bristol

[The Living Church] August 16, 2005--The first lawsuit between the Bishop of Connecticut and the vestry of St. John’s, Bristol, was filed in early August when Farmington Savings Bank lodged an interpleader with the New Britain Superior Court, asking it to determine ownership of the parish checking accounts.

Related article:{2A004078-CD51-42E0-98EC-025D7603C03E}&notoc=1
A Commentary from the American Anglican Council Regarding the Situation in Connecticut -American Anglican Council

Malawi Sees Huge Protests over Appointment of Pro-Gay Anglican

[Christianity Today UK] August 20, 2005--The Rev Nicholas Henderson, urbane vicar for Ealing in West London, has been elected to be the next Bishop of Lake Malawi based on his 18-year relationship with the Lake Malawi diocese in the province of Central Africa, Malawi. During that time, he had visited and helped raise £250,000 for religious, social and humanitarian projects which electors in the diocese considered carefully when electing him.

Oops! Someone didn't do his homework. Should've checked out the candidate's doctrinal and theological background, organizational memberships, sermons and publications.

The Harry Potter Vacation Bible School

[Agape Press] August 19, 2005-- Mainline denominations have struggled for years in the area of church growth....So -- forgive this columnist if he tackles a mainline church that actually appears to be growing. Or, at least, its vacation Bible school is growing. A church in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, has decided to use J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter motif in its summer Christian education emphasis.

Conservative churches grow while mainline churches struggle

[Lincoln Journal Star Online] August 20, 2005--As they have for the last 30 years, the so-called "mainline" denominations, especially those identified as liberal or moderate, are losing members while Evangelical and charismatic churches, which are often identified as conservative, are growing.

Differences Exposed

[VirtueOnline] August 19, 2005--The sexuality debate is but the symptom of a far greater problem: wealready are divided and we don't know how to relate to ourselves. TheEpiscopal Church has evolved into two different denominations under one roof and we are in denial of that reality.

Bishop Wright May Be Right

[VirtueOnline] August 19, 2005--A recent... [article] in the Guardian from Bishop Tom Wright criticised the declining quality of debate in the councils of the Church of England. 'Reason,' he wrote, 'is in short supply right now,' adding, 'When someone says in a debate, 'What I feel is...' the chair ought to intervene. What people feel is neither here nor there in a debate.' Wright is undoubtedly correct, but the rot has been allowed to go on for too long, encouraged by our educational system, not least in the area of theological 'equipping'.

Weblog: Sinners in a Personal Relationship with an Angry God

[] August 19, 2005--Plus: Today's scientific method of "discrimination and retaliation," efforts to defund abortions, and other stories from online sources around the world.

Taizé founder dies at prayer, stabbed in front of children

[Church Times] August 19, 2005--Brother Roger, the charismatic founder and leader of the Taizé community in France, was stabbed and died during worship on Tuesday night when more than 2000 young people were present.

Selby breaks bishops' ranks

[Church Times] August 19, 2005--The Bishop of Worcester, Dr Peter Selby, has broken ranks with the House of Bishops over its statement on the Civil Partnerships Act ( News, 29 July). Writing in the Church Times, Dr Selby dissociates himself from the bishops' views.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Anglican Bishop Breaks Ranks Over Civil Partnerships, Evangelicals Stand Firm

[Christianity Today UK] August 19, 2005--The Bishop of Worcester, Dr Peter Selby, has announced his decision to disassociate himself with the views expressed in the House of Bishops statement on the Civil Partnership Act.

Debate Over New Anglican Archbishops in Kenya Continues

[Christianity Today UK] August 18, 2005--A debate in the Anglican Church of Kenya over the number of archbishops to be appointed as part of a structural shape-up still fails to find agreement.

Episcopal Church Congregations Appeal to Rowan Williams in Gay Bishop Row

[Christianity Today UK] August 19, 2005--Six congregations in America have appealed directly to the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams regarding the views of their bishops towards the consecration of gay clergy.

Related articles:
Conservative churches "sack" bishop -
Churches split over gay bishop - Tallahassee Democrat

Cherokee court stops 'gay marriage'; child focus of civil union dispute; cartoon tackles controversial topic

[Baptist Press] August 18, 2005--A Cherokee Nation tribal court issued a temporary restraining order Aug. 12 preventing a lesbian couple from filing the papers to make their "marriage" official.

Families, in all forms, need a church family, speaker says

[Baptist Press] August 18, 2005--Mom, dad and kids. Three single roommates sharing a house. An unwed teenager with a baby. Three generations living under one roof. A widowed father raising a daughter.

Call to end state's link with church

[The Guardian] August 19, 2005--A leading Labour thinktank has called for the Church of England's preferential status to end and for its bishops to the lose the right to sit in the House of Lords.

Judge Orders Rewrite of 'Misleading' Marriage Amendment Text

[The Christian Post] August 19, 2005--A judge ordered California's attorney general on Thursday to add wording to the text of a proposed ballot initiative for a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage and prohibit marriage rights for unmarried couples.

Christian Worker Sues Allstate in Free Speech Case

[The Christian Post} August 19, 2005--The Allstate Insurance Company is being sued by a former worker in Illinois who has alleged he was fired for writing articles opposing same-sex marriage and the gay lifestyle.

Exodus Launches Initiative for Youth Struggling with Homosexuality

[The Christian Post] August 18, 2005--Exodus International has been ministering to adults struggling with homosexuality for 30 years and is now expanding its focus to include youth struggling with same-gender attraction.

From Cologne to the Conquest of Europe: How the Muslim Brotherhood is Challenging the Pope

[www.chiesa] August 19, 2005--At World Youth Day in Cologne, Benedict XVI is also meeting with Muslims. Here are the leaders and organizations of radical Islam in Germany, with their plans for expansion.

Persecution of Kosovo Christians Reveals Larger Threat

[] August 19, 2005--International intervention to halt the persecution of Christians in Kosovo is a "complete failure," according to a former diplomat and other political analysts who briefed Capitol Hill staff late last week, pointing to the destruction of 150 churches and the simultaneous construction of 200 mosques.

Two heterosexual men in Toronto cancel "gay" wedding

[Yahoo!News] August 12, 2005--Two longtime friends, neither gay, who recently announced plans to get married to take advantage of Canada's tax rules that give couples preferrential treatment have called off their nuptials, they told AFP.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Standing on the Bible, Standing with Jesus

Commentary by Robin G. Jordan

To take a Biblical view of homosexuality in our day and time is likely to earn oneself the label of “homophobic.” But what really motivates many orthodox Bible-believing Christians to take this view in the face of hatred, contempt and persecution for upholding a Biblical position on human sexuality and marriage? What do those who most frequently apply the label “homophobic” to those who do not support their view of homosexuality really mean?

In 1982 InterVarsity Press published God’s Book for God’s People: Why We Need the Bible. John R. W. Stott originally preached the substance of this little book as a series of five sermons in All Souls Church, Langham Place, London, during February and March 1980. In Chapter 2: Christ & the Bible Stott examines how the Scriptures bear witness to Christ and how Christ bears witness to the Scripture – how Jesus endorsed the Old Testament and how Jesus made provision for the writing of the New Testament. On pages 33-34 he makes a very important point:

“…there is no evidence in the Gospels of Jesus’ disagreeing with the doctrinal or ethical teaching of the Old Testament, On the contrary, he endorsed it. What he contradicted was the scribal misinterpretations and distortions of the Old Testament. This was his point in the Sermon on the Mount, in which six times he said in effect, ‘You have heard this, but I tell you something different.’ What they had heard we the so-called traditions of the elders. It was these which he was criticizing; it was not the teaching of Moses in the law. For what stood written in Scripture he received as his Father’s Word.”

Stott goes on to say:

“…we have to add that disciple is not above his teacher. It is inconceivable that a Christian who looks to Jesus as his Teacher and Lord should have a lower view of the Old Testament than he did. What is the sense in calling Jesus ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and then disagreeing with him? We have no liberty to disagree with him. His view of Scripture must become ours. Since he believed Scripture, so must we. He emphatically endorsed its authority.”

At the conclusion of the chapter (pages 37-38) Stott reiterates this point:

“Let me sum up. We believe the Scriptures because of Christ, He endorsed the Old Testament, and he made provision for the writing of the New Testament by giving to the apostles his authority. We therefore receive the Bible from the hand of Jesus Christ. It is he who has invested it with his own authority. And since we are determined to submit to him, we are determined to submit to it. Our doctrine of Scripture is bound up with our loyalty to Jesus Christ. If he is our Teacher and our Lord, we have no liberty to disagree with him. Our view of Scripture must be his.”

Stott in this statement sums up beautifully how many orthodox Bible-believing Christians see Christ and the Bible.

In the Gospels Jesus defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. Nowhere in the Gospels does he endorse sexual activity outside of marriage. For those who do not or cannot marry, he prescribes sexual abstinence. He identifies sexual activity outside of marriage in its many forms – fornication, adultery, incest, homosexuality, lesbianism, and bestiality – as one of the evils that comes from within ourselves and that defiles (dirties or pollutes) us in God’s sight, by which we make ourselves unfit for God’s company.

Militant gays and lesbians and those whom they have influenced label as “homophobic” anyone who does not agree with their assertion that sexual arousal to a member of the same sex is a normal acceptable human impulse and sexual activity between members of the same sex is normal acceptable human behavior. All kinds of evil motives are ascribed to a person so labeled. “Homophobic” has become a favorite smear word of theirs along with “fundamentalist” for orthodox Bible-believing Christians. Indeed anything that is not pro-gay is labeled as “homophobic.” One might say “homophobic” has become synonymous with “not pro-gay.” Their aim, of course, is to prejudice the minds of those they are seeking to influence against what orthodox Bible-believing Christians believe – the teaching of the one to whom orthodox Bible-believing Christians are determined to submit as Teacher and Lord. The one whom militant gays and lesbians and their fellow travelers are reviling is Jesus Christ himself.

Those who have adopted the views of militant gays and lesbians must discard, ignore or twist much of teaching of the Old Testament that Jesus himself endorsed and the teaching of the New Testament the writing of which for which he made provision in order to regard themselves as his disciples. I personally cannot see how those who disagree to such a large extent with Jesus can call him “Teacher” and “Lord.” Like Stott, I find it difficult to conceive. If they were honest with themselves, they are really not willing to submit to him. They are not willing to accept his hard teachings.

Jesus tells those who seek to become his disciples that they must first count the cost of discipleship. We must be willing to put him before everything else. To the rich young man Jesus said that he must be willing to sacrifice his great wealth if he truly wanted to follow Jesus. To others he is saying that they must be willing to sacrifice a habitual pattern of sin that they have come to see as part of themselves, part of their identity. They cannot walk with Jesus and cling to their besetting sins. The life of discipleship to which Jesus calls us is one of forsaking the “flesh” with its sinful desires, of pursuing holiness, and of practicing godliness. Nor can they cling to a view of the human condition that disagrees with Christ’s, one that views a “normal” and “acceptable” and even endorses what the Old Testament and the New Testament do not. What they are saying to Jesus is, “I will follow you but with these reservations.” That is not discipleship.

If being a disciple of Jesus Christ entails being labeled “not pro-gay,” not pro-sin, so be it. Jesus himself was not pro-sin. He called upon those who flocked to hear his teaching to repent, to turn away from their sins. To the woman caught in adultery, he declared “Go now and leave your life of sin.” (John 8:11) His purpose for seeking the lost was to save them. Ultimately he gave his life so that we might no longer be the slaves of sin. As Jesus himself taught – and Stott admirably draws to our attention, no disciple can be above his teacher.

Why I object to Homosexuality and Same-sex unions

The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion)
August 2005

Peter Akinola

The Church of Nigeria is an Evangelical Church. It upholds the authority of scripture and is unreservedly committed to mission and evangelism that results in conversion of people to the Lord, church-planting and the caring ministry. In this Church, we teach about the total depravity of man and his absolute need for salvation through faith in Jesus the Christ. For us, therefore, adherence to scripture is not only paramount, it is also non-negotiable. In matters of faith and practice, scripture provides sufficient warrant for what is considered right and what is judged to be wrong....

Northeast Florida Episcopal diocese split over gay bishop

[] August 18, 2005--Six northeast Florida Episcopal congregations have asked the archbishop of Canterbury to help secure them a different bishop because their current one has not distanced himself from the national organization, which elected an openly gay bishop in 2003.

US Diocese loses court battle over seceding parish's property's%20property

[The Church of England Newspaper] August 19, 2005--An American parish that left its diocese over the consecration of the Anglican Communion's first openly gay bishop has won a court case over the ownership of its building and property. The diocese of Los Angeles had taken legal action against St James church in Newport Beach to reclaim the property, after the parish seceded from the Episcopal Church to affiliate with the Church of Uganda. However, California's Superior Court this week dismissed the claim, concluding that they were being sued for their disagreement with the ECUSA over Gene Robinson's consecration as Bishop of New Hampshire. Judge David Velasquez said that the action the church took in response to the row over gay clergy was within its rights of freedom of speech.

More articles from The Church of England Newspaper can be found here.

The fictional world of Frank Griswold

[VirtueOnline] August 18, 2005--The Episcopal Church's foremost cheer leader told a reporter in Lexington, Kentucky recently that the Episcopal Church is healing.

Do not leave the Anglican Church- Bishop Nwosu entreats youths

[Church of Nigeria News] August 15, 2005--Worried by the exodus of youths from the Anglican Church, the Bishop of Umuahia, the Rt. Rev Ikechi Nwosu has appealed to youths to stay put in the Anglican Church.

Malawi in uproar over promotion of pro-gay churchman

[The Times] August 18, 2005--As the urbane vicar for Ealing, in West London, the Rev Nicholas Henderson might not have seemed the obvious first choice to become bishop of one of the most conservative provinces in Africa.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

The Rev. Paul Briggs Appointed COO of the Anglican Mission

[Anglican Mission in America] August 8, 2005--The Anglican Mission in America is announcing an important appointment to its staff of the National Mission Resource Center at Pawleys Island, South Carolina. The Rev. Paul Briggs has been named Chief Operating Officer for the AMiA, and will move from Raleigh, NC where he serves as Deacon at Church of the Apostles. Paul is currently Vice-President of Commercial Banking with Branch Banking and Trust Company, Inc. (BB&T), one of the top financial holding companies in the country . At BB&T since 1997, Paul has focused his efforts on advising churches and non-profits. Paul brings a unique combination of business and ministry gifts and experience to this vital role.

New Anglican Mission Church for Wyoming

[Anglican Mission in America] August 5, 2005--Wyoming is a land of wide open spaces, big skies and an almost constant wind. But there is a new wind blowing these days, ushering in a new community of faith closely tied to Christians in other parts of the world. “These are ‘can do’ people,” affirms the Rev. Thomas Johnson, Pastor of the newly formed Anglican Church of the Resurrection, with groups worshiping in Casper and Glenrock. “When empowered, they get things done.” Now part of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA), a missionary movement based in Rwanda, the new congregation is quickly growing and moving forward.

Church of the Savior, West Chicago

[Anglican Mission in America] August 5, 2005--Even as the Anglican Mission in America marks its fifth anniversary at midsummer, it announces the affiliation of its 80th congregation—a new church plant in the Chicago area. Church of the Savior is a new and growing group of about 60 worshipers in West Chicago, a suburb about 35 miles west of the city that is itself poised for major growth and development as Chicagoland continues to grow westward.

St. John the Evangelist's Summer of Missions

[Anglican Mission inAmerica] August 1, 2005--The long-standing mission work of St. John’s, in Southampton Pennsvlvania, continues in 2005 with exciting work around the world. In early July, Naomi, Edwin and Owen Morris departed for a several week visit to China. “Ever since we left Hong Kong in 1994, we have thought about returning to Asia some day.” The Morris’ traveled to support a Christian organization called the Jian Hua Foundation (translated to “Build China”), which sends professional people to underdeveloped areas of China. Christian businessmen in Hong Kong founded Jian Hua in 1981 with a vision for reaching people in China through humanitarian services. Jian Hua has grown to over 200 full time Christian teachers, doctors, agriculturalists, social workers and other professionals in neglected areas of China from Mongolia to Tibet, showing that Christ cares for Chinese people.

'Da Vinci' film divides British churches

[The Associated Press] August 17, 2005--Westminster Abbey said no, but Lincoln Cathedral was happy to oblige as was a small Scottish chapel.

Africa Anglican Church Set to Expand in Kenya

[Christianity Today UK] August 17, 2005--The Anglican Church in Kenya has announced it could have up to five archbishops and one primate in two years if changes proposed by a church committee get the go ahead.

Seven Parishes Seeks Protection from Panel of Reference

[VirtueOnline] August 17, 2005--Because we fear that your letter may imply some risk of action against the mission congregations and their vicars, we have felt it necessary to apply to the Panel of Reference for protection. We would prefer to work out a solution locally, and will rescind our application if that can be accomplished....

Tolerance and truth in an intolerant church

[VirtueOnline] Augsut 16, 2005--America's mainline denominations are in the midst of their greatest struggle for survival.

The lead candidate for death by a thousand cuts is the Episcopal Church USA.

Christian Prayer Allowed in Delaware School Board

[The Christian Post] August 17, 2005--A judge in Delaware ruled that a Christian prayer before the start of local school board meetings is legal, quoting a legal precedent that the practice is "deeply embedded in the history and tradition of this country."

Open Doors International Encourage Believers In Nigeria

[The Christian Post] August 17, 2005--Last year, around 1,500 Nigerian Christians were massacred by Islamic fundamentalists. In addition, 173 churches were burned to the ground while 75,000 people were displaced, leaving more than 1,000 widowed and 9,000 fatherless or orphaned.

Ten Hard Questions Pastors Must Ask Themselves

[The Christian Post] August 16, 2005--The average pastoral career lasts only 14 years and 1,500 pastors leave their assignments every month in the United States because of conflict, burn-out, or moral failure, researcher The Barna Group. In light of difficulties pastors face, Thomas S. Rainer, founder of a successful consulting firm for churches, wrote out ten questions pastors should ask themselves before giving up.

Lutherans Go Gender-Neutral for Worship

[The Christian Post] August 16, 2005--The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America gave the green light to a new prayer and hymnal book that would give more options for contemporary worship and less emphasis on the masculine images of God.

Youth, Archbishop Mourn Taize Leader's Murder

[The Christian Post] August 17, 2005--Brother Roger, the founder of the French religious Taize group, who the Archbishop of Canterbury called “one of the best loved Christian leaders of our time,” was stabbed to death during evening prayers by a mentally disturbed person, members from his community said.

Catholic Archdiocese Evicts Church Supporting Same-Sex Marriage

[] August 17, 2005--The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans has evicted the Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC) from a Catholic AIDS hospice because of a complaint that the church believes in same-sex marriage.

Christianity Today Touches Nerve in Global Warming Debate

[Agape Press] August 17, 2005--Focus on the Family is issuing a strong response to a Christianity Today article that criticizes the organization and others in the evangelical Christian community who remain skeptical about the theory of global warming.

U.S. Court Says It’s Okay for Men to Come to Work in a Dress and to Shower with Female Co-Workers

[] August 16, 2005--A Pennsylvania court has opened the door for men who believe they are women to come to work in a dress and to use the women’s restroom and shower facilities. The decision by the Commonwealth Court, which upheld a lower court ruling mandating that “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” be added to the Allentown (Pennsylvania) human relations ordinance, is being decried as an “outrage” by a traditional values group.

Gays Using World Youth Day Platform to Demand Church Acceptance – Again

[] August 16, 2005--Since the elevation of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger to the papacy, homosexual groups with the generous assistance of mainstream media, have been clamouring for the Pope to “relax restrictions” on homosexual behavior in Catholic discipline. In the latest bid for Church acceptance of homosexual deviancy, a number of gay activist groups have called for the Pope to announce at World Youth Day his acceptance of sexual immorality into the canon of Catholic moral teaching.

Latvian Cardinal Warns Gay Militancy More Dangerous than Soviet Times

[] August 16, 2005--To a packed basilica holding tens of thousands of Catholics on Monday, Latvian Cardinal Janis Pujats warned that homosexual militancy is more dangerous than the militancy experienced by the war-torn country in Soviet times. "In Soviet times we faced atheism, which oppressed religion; now we have an era of sexual atheism," he said. "This form of atheism is even more infectious and dangerous, spiritual values disappear in a swamp of sexual irregularity."

Wicca, the pagan temptation for youth

[Baptist Press] August 16, 2005--I recently had the opportunity to meet with several youth ministers from Southern Baptist churches here in Missouri. Each impressed me as having a deep commitment to biblical authority and personal passion for Jesus Christ. As we discussed the challenges facing current youth ministers, a concern all shared was the fact that many youth, including youth in evangelical churches, are dabbling in Wicca.

Study refutes faith in silent majority,,1549722,00.html

[The Guardian] August 16, 2005--Congregations are losing their religious belief even faster than churches are losing their congregations, according to research published today.

Related article:
Faith in God Declining Faster than Church Attendance - Christianity Today UK

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Judge Rules Dissident Parish Owns Property,1,4345048.story?coll=la-headlines-california

[The Los Angeles Times] August 16, 2005--A conservative Newport Beach parish that severed ties with the Episcopal Church in a dispute over scriptural teaching and homosexuality is the rightful owner of its buildings and other property, an Orange County Superior Court judge ruled Monday.

Related articles:
Judge dismisses St. James lawsuit - Daily Pilot
Court Dismisses Lawsuit Against St. James Anglican Church - VirtueOnline{0451B933-F183-4587-8590-1C6635534449}&notoc=1
Court Dismisses Lawsuit Against St. James Anglican Church, Newport Beach, One Year After Breakaway - American Anglican Council

German Churches Report Growing Interest

[Christianity Today UK] August 16, 2005--Both the Catholic and the Evangelical Churches in Germany have reported a growing thirst for church services in the wake of numerous tragedies.

Christians push for "Christmas Celebrations" in public places

[Canadian Free Press] August 16, 2005--With the American Civil Liberties Union as their targeted enemy, the Alliance Defense Fund members aim at putting Christmas back into American life. Hallelujah. Hark the Herald Conservatives Sing.

Medical Test Now Mandatory for Anglican Priests

[This Day] August 14, 2005--Head of the Anglican Communion in Africa, Primate Peter Akinola has made periodic medical examination a mandatory exercise for all Anglican clergies.

Sister acts against Da Vinci 'heresy',12589,1550078,00.html

[The Guardian] August 16, 2005--Shooting on the film adaptation of Dan Brown's runaway bestseller The Da Vinci Code at Lincoln Cathedral began yesterday against the backdrop of demonstrations outside by Catholics who take exception to Brown's "heresy".

Calvary worships, considers reply

[The Times-Union] August 15, 2005--For two hours Sunday morning, the sanctuary at Calvary Church in Jacksonville was filled with praise music, Scripture reading, prayers for the sick and the occasional outbursts of restless children.

Bishop-Controlled Church Wants Control of Reins Again

[Agape Press] August 15, 2005---A spokesman for an Episcopal church in Connecticut that was forcibly seized by its liberal bishop because of its opposition to homosexuality says members of the congregation want their building and property back.

Sudanese Christians Rescue former Persecutors

[VirtueOnline] August 15, 2005--Please give me a moment of time so I can tell you about an extraordinary opportunity save the lives of hundreds of children, and also further a movement forgiveness that could have a ripple effect around the world and through generations in Muslim - Christian relations.

Somebody's Daughter: Confronting The Lies Of Pornography

[The Christian Post] August 16, 2005--The new CD was created ''for those struggling with pornography,'' and features speakers from Focus on the Family and Family Life, original poetry, scripture, and personal stories from men.

A Dangerous Prescription for a Slow and Painful Death: ELCA Recommendations on Homosexuality

[The Christian Post] August 11, 2005--The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America may become the next church to allow the ordination of self-affirming homosexuals and the blessing of same-sex unions, pending the upcoming votes at the denomination’s church-wide assembly this Friday.

Court Decision Worries Churches

[] August 16, 2005--Kelo puts religious property at risk.

Continental Christophobia Cubed

[] August 16, 2005--Europe's rejection of its Christian heritage.

Fla. church targeted by homosexual activists stands firm

[Baptist Press] August 15, 2005--Tommy Green preaches in the pulpit while people outside scream obscenities, call church members bigots and accuse him of being the Antichrist, but he is unfazed.

They are praying, watching & waiting; what’s our response?

[Baptist Press] August 15, 2005--The interview was wrapping up when a reporter with the International Mission Board asked a prominent leader in the rapidly expanding Chinese house church movement how American Christians could pray for house churches in China. “Stop praying for persecution in China to end,” he responded, “for it is through persecution that the church has grown.”

New on the AAC Website: Multi-media Resources Page

The AAC has recently added a new section on its website for a listing of multi-media resources (DVDs, videos, CDs, books, and other resources) that they have reviewed and recommend to you. Go to the AAC home page ( and look under "Resource Center" for the new "Multi-media Resources" page.

They are just beginning to build this on-line "library" page, and they invite your recommendations for additions to the page. These resources do not have to be strictly Anglican--they are looking for biblically-sound resources that will edify the soul and mind. Please refer to this new resource page often in the coming months to discover non-AAC resources that may benefit you individually, your church, or other groups in your community. They have added two resources so far that they encourage you to check out:

"A Decision for God" (DVD)"A Decision for God" is a DVD which tells the story of how two parishes in Washington State each made the decision to leave the Episcopal Church of the U.S. and remain in the Worldwide Anglican Communion. It is a story for any Christian and every worshiping body that seeks to be faithful to Holy Scripture and to the Lord whose faithfulness never ends. The parishes of St. Charles Anglican Church and St. Stephens Anglican Church invite you to visit their website where one can watch their video online or request a free DVD.

"We've Had Dessert: Biblical Malnutrition & Today's Episcopal Church" (Online Book)By Charles W. Slaton, Jr.www.haddessert.comThere has been a lot of theological dialogue on the turmoil in the Episcopal Church. However, Charles W. “Slats” Slaton, Jr. speaks the language of the laity in his inspirational online book, We’ve Had Dessert. Biblical Malnutrition & Today’s Episcopal Church.After years of seeing God’s authority challenged, the frustrations of this parishioner’s heart were finally poured onto paper. The result is an indisputable, fervent call for orthodoxy. Though only 30 pages, this engaging booklet gets to the core of the problem in the ECUSA - and because this problem is universal, it speaks clearly to other denominations as well. It is truth made simple -- and a must-read. The entire publication ofWe’ve Had Dessert can be downloaded at the website above.

Harry Potter Controversy Carries Over to Vatican Radio

[] August 12, 2005--The massive controversy generated over the letters of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger posted on regarding Harry Potter continues nearly a month after the posting. The priest who in 2003 inadvertently caused the world media to falsely trumpet that the Vatican and Pope John Paul II approved of the Harry Potter novels, was back on Vatican radio defending the Potter books, responding to the letters from Cardinal Ratzinger.

'Anti-ACLU' Fights for Religion in Public Life

[Fox News] August 14, 2005-- For years, the American Civil Liberties Union (search) and other groups have fought to remove any trace of religion from government and public life, and for years they've won.

Now the ACLU is facing a challenge from groups such as the Alliance Defense Fund (search), one of several Christian law firms formed in the 1990s.

Men have been reduced to sperm donors, says Buerk

[The Independent] August 16, 2005--The veteran BBC newsreader Michael Buerk has complained that "almost all the big jobs in broadcasting [are] held by women," and that men have been reduced to "sperm donors".

'UFO cult' infiltrated

[WorldNetDaily] August 14, 2005--A young filmmaker says he infiltrated the UFO cult known as the Raelians, and he's looking to blow the lid off the secretive group with footage he shot while undercover

Monday, August 15, 2005

Sentamu calls for religious revival

[The New Vision] August 15, 2005--The Archbishop of York, Dr. John Sentamu, has called for religious revival in the country.

Nigerian Prelate Calls for Suspension of Church of England from Worldwide Anglican Communion

[] August 15, 2005--Peter Akinola, the Primate of Nigeria and one of the most influential Anglican bishops in the world, has called for the suspension of the Church of England, the mother church of Anglicanism, from the Worldwide Anglican Communion.

Anglican Church’s new power plan

[The Standard] August 15, 2005--Kenya’s second largest Christian denomination could have at least five archbishops and one primate in two years if changes proposed by a committee of the Anglican Church are adopted.

The Church of Ireland: An Inside Look at a Church in Turmoil

[VirtueOnline] August 13, 2005--A Note to Readers. The following story regarding the Church of Ireland was given to VirtueOnline at the time of the Primates meeting in Dromantine, Northern Ireland. I was privileged to meet albeit clandestinely with several orthodox members of the Church of Ireland and obtained this information on the understanding that no names be given thus protecting sources against possible reprisal by revisionist bishops and archbishops.

Breaking away,1413,204~21474~3010162,00.html

[The Press-Telegram] August 13, 2005--When All Saints Church in Belmont Heights split from the Los Angeles Episcopal Diocese in October, it became part of a rich, fractious tradition that dates back to when King Henry VIII created the Church of England and cut ties with the Roman Catholic Church.

Related articles:,1413,204~21474~3010273,00.html
Dissent is a centuries-long Episcopal tradition - The Press-Telegram,1413,204~21474~3010171,00.html
St. Mary thrives after years of turmoil - The Press-Telegram,1413,204~21474~3010243,00.html
1970s church divisions painful for congregants - The Press-Telegram,1413,204~21474~3010251,00.html
Church of Our Saviour hangs on- The Press-Telegram

Lutherans reaffirm gay clergy celibacy

[The Washington Times] August 13, 2005--The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the country's largest and most liberal Lutheran denomination, kept in place a ban on active homosexual clergy yesterday at its annual convention, but took a more ambiguous stance on same-sex church "blessings."

An Open Letter to Bishop Mark Hanson

[VirtueOnline] August 14, 2005--This article, though written by a Lutheran theologian to the leader of the ELCA, may well have been written by an orthodox Episcopal theologian to ECUSA's Presiding Bishop.

Teacher Sues after Religious Posters Removed from Class

[] August 15, 2005-- A civil liberties group has filed a First Amendment lawsuit against a Virginia school on behalf of a Spanish teacher whose religious-themed posters were removed from his classroom while he was out sick.

[The Church of England Newspaper] August 12, 2005--The partners of gay clergy will be able to remain in the vicarage for months, under proposed legislation to give full effect to the Civil Partnerships Act. The full extent of changes that will be brought in by the Act, which comes into effect this December, will establish the partnerships as equivalent to marriage, critics argue. They are particularly alarmed that the Government will introduce the changes to Church law having secured the consent of the House of Bishops and Archbishops’ Council, but without any discussion at the General Synod, in the dioceses or parishes.

Lutherans Reject Gay Clergy Idea

[CBS News] August 13, 2005--Gays and lesbians lashed out after the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America rejected a proposal that would have allowed them to serve as clergy in certain cases, saying they felt rejected by their own denomination.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

ECLCA Churchwide Assembly votes fall short of full victory for orthodox Lutherans

Commentary by Robin G. Jordan

By 503 votes to 490 orthodox Lutherans defeated an attempt to sanction the ordination and rostering of sexually active gays and lesbians . The ECLA Churchwide Assembly, however, left standing a vaguely worded 1993 policy statement on “pastoral care and welcome” to gays and lesbians, that has been interpreted by some ECLA pastors and churches as permitting the blessing of same sex unions. How blessing what God does not bless can be construed as pastoral care – spiritual guidance and care – is beyond me. The Scriptures tell us that those who do not warn a sinner and the sinner perishes in his sin, then the blood of the sinner will be required of them. Our Lord reminds us that while temptation will come, woe to the one through whom temptation comes. Better to be cast into the sea with a stone millstone tied around one’s neck than to cause another to sin. The Scriptures also tell us that preachers and teachers will be held to a stricter accounting on the Day of Judgment than others. We are not free to treat the sins of others as of no consequence to ourselves. We can cause them to sin by our failure to draw to their attention the sinful nature of their relationships, to call them to repentance, and to treat sin as sin. The ECLA pastor and the ECLA church that blesses the unions of gays and lesbians puts temptation in their path – the temptation to believe that what is detestable to God is acceptable to Him and even blessed by Him. This hardly meets the standards of good pastoral care. Let us not forget that the human heart is extremely wicked and deceitful. Only God alone is able to search the human hearts and know our darkest secrets, even those that we hide from ourselves. What some would have us believe is caring for gays and lesbians is disobedience and rebellion. The apostles warn us against such false teachers and prophets as does our Lord.

Orthodox Lutherans must stand firm for the teaching of the Bible. At the next Churchwide Assembly in 2009 those who seek to normalize homosexuality in the ELCA will again seek the sanctioning of the ordination and rostering of non-celibate gays and lesbians and the blessing of same sex unions by that body.

Be loyal to relevant authorities, Archbishop cautions youth

[Church of Nigeria News] August 12, 2005--At the opening of the 48th National Bible Conference of the Anglican Youth Fellowship (Nigeria), young people have been reminded to always uphold the Constitution of the Church and be loyal to relevant authorities.

Judge: Church in gay clergy dispute is rightful owner of property

[The Boston Globe] August 13, 2005--A judge tentatively ruled Thursday that a Newport Beach parish that left the Episcopal Diocese in a dispute over a gay bishop's ordination is the rightful owner of its building and property.

Anglicans reject bishop-elect

[Nation Online] August 13, 2005--Some members of the Anglican Church have petitioned the Church’s Provincial Court not to confirm Bishop-elect for Lake Malawi Diocese Nicholas Paul Henderson to replace the late Peter Nyanja, arguing the Electoral Assembly flouted procedures.

Episcopal leader says church is healing

[Lexington Herald-Leader] August 13, 2005--The Most Rev. Frank T. Griswold, presiding bishop, primate and chief pastor of the Episcopal Church USA, traveled to Berea recently for his denomination's international youth convention, where he was welcomed enthusiastically.

Related article:
Controversial Griswold of ECUSA Speaks of Anglican Gay Divisions - Christianity Today UK

Bishop Rejects Alternative Episcopal Oversight for Florida Seven.

[VirtueOnline] August 12, 2005--Bishop John Howard seeks to offer DEPO. He expects parishes to contribute financially to the diocese.Bishop Howard says he will deal with two missions separately....

Lutheran Church Votes on Sexuality Statements

[The Christian Post] August 13, 2005--After hours of debate and wrangling, voting members at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s churchwide assembly yesterday re-affirmed the ban on non-celibate gay clergy but left same-sex union blessings up to individual pastors and churches.

ELCA Allows Gay Unions, Rejects Gay Clergy

[The Christian Post] August 12, 2005--The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America voted Friday to allow the blessing of same-sex unions under certain circumstances but rejected a recommendation to ordain non-celibate gay clergy.

Related articles:
Church won't ease rules on gays - Associated Press
Vote: Lutherans vs Homo Clergy - The Conservative Voice
Stance on gay unions unchanged - Religious News Service
Lutherans reject 'sexually active' gay clergy - IOL
Lutherans reject gay marriage - The Miami Herald
Lutherans reject ordination of gays - The Boston Globe
Lutherans reject easing of gay ordination rules - New York Times News Service

Weblog: The Sin of Talking to a Reporter

[] August 12, 2005--Plus: Nigerian e-mail scam kills a church, suit over supposed ban on Declaration of Independence settled, NCC opposes Justice Sunday II, and other stories from online sources around the world.

The Depravity of "Desperate Housewives"

[Concerned Women for America] August 11, 2005--“Which housewife are you?” This question is posed on the homepage of Desperate Housewives, ABC’s hit show which takes a “darkly comedic look at suburbia” by portraying a “truly contemporary take on happily ever after.” By taking the quiz, fans can find out which one of the housewives they are most like—but it’s not much of an honor.

Mainstream media silent on violent Planned Parenthood video

[] August 10, 2005--The mainstream media is silent after Planned Parenthood Golden Gate (PPGG) posted an animated video that displayed gross acts of brutality against those who wish to advance the messages of life and bastinence.

Planned Parenthood Affiliate Quietly Removes Cartoon Advocating Violence Against Pro-lifers

[] August 10, 2005--Christian and pro-life groups say attack is supported by tax dollars.

New Jersey University Student Punished for Voicing Opposition to Homosexuality in Email

[] August 11, 2005--The despotism of the leftist establishment on American university campuses is a standard topic of most conservative magazines and websites. The war over freedom of speech is especially fierce among the tenured neo-Marxists who govern academia according to one group.

Starbucks promotes homosexual agenda with coffee cup

[Baptist Press] August 12, 2005--After nearly a decade of lying low, Starbucks has reentered the homosexual rights movement in a few ways that have put at least one conservative watchdog group on alert.

Calif. high court won't hear 'gay marriage' case just yet; another petition filed in Cherokee case

[Baptist Press] August 12, 2005--A Cherokee Nation lesbian couple will have to clear at least one more hurdle before filing the document to make its "gay marriage" legal.

Gay lobby groups go separate ways over same-sex marriage

[Sydney Morning Herald] August 13, 2005--A year after Federal Parliament imposed a ban on same-sex marriages, the soldiers for change have turned on each other.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Ruling for Breakaway Parish,1,7012533.story?coll=la-news-state

[] August 12, 2005--Judge rejects Episcopal diocese's attempt to get property back from the conservative St. James, which cut ties with the national church.

Related articles:
Judge: Church in gay clergy dispute is rightful owner of property - Associated Press
Church looks for victory in assets ruling - Daily Pilot

Rift In Connecticut Church Mirrors National Episcopal Split

[] August 12, 2005--Like many in the Episcopal Church, parishioners at St. John's are divided over the issue of gay clergy. But here, the rift has split the congregation in two.

Bishop Replies to 12 bishops over Priest's Deposition

[VirtueOnline] August 11, 2005--Response to the statement of August 4, 2005 from diocesan bishops Ackerman, Adams, Beckwith, Duncan, Iker, and Schofield; Suffragan Bishop Bena, assisting bishop Scriven and Jecko; and retired bishops MacBurney, Parsons and Wantland....

The Islamization of Europe

[VirtueOnline] August 11, 2005--On Friday 20th May 2005 a crowd of some 300 Muslims burned a wooden cross outside the American embassy in London. This was part of a protest against the rumoured desecration of a Qur'an by American soldiers in Guantanamo Bay, during which British and American flags were also burned. Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of this event was that it was not deemed to be newsworthy, receiving little attention in the national press.

Polish Your Headship

[The Revealer] August 9, 2005--"In defense of the biblical family, we today join faithful Christians across this great land by choosing sides in a fight. Like William Barret Travis before the Alamo defenders at the defining moment in Texas history, our sword is drawn and we call upon parents, pastors, and leaders -- civil and ecclesiastical -- to choose sides in the defining issue of our generation and fight to the death.... The products in the 2005 edition of the Vision Forum Family Catalog have been carefully selected to share our passion for the Christ-centered biblical family. Each reflects the commitment of others who have drawn a line in the sand and who will fight to the death in defense of Christ’s truth.... Victory or death! The biblical family — now and forever!"

Religion takes a back seat in Western Europe

[USA Today] August 10, 2005--I don't go to church, and I don't know one person who does," says Brian Kenny, 39, who is studying psychotherapy and counseling at Dublin Business School. "Fifteen years ago, I didn't know one person who didn't."

Niger Famine: Next Two Months Critical

[The Christian Post] August 12, 2005--The famine in Niger is growing worse each day with an estimated 2.5 to 3.6 million people, 800,000 of whom are children, in need of critical food-aid. In the Maradi and Zinder regions of southern Niger where situations are worst, malnutrition is claiming the lives of children under five years of age at an alarming rate. According to staff members from World Vision, up to 10 percent of children there could die from the hunger.

Church Evangelical Council Attacks 'Compromise' with Civil Partnerships

[The Christian Post] August 12, 2005--The Church of England has once again come under fire for its decision to ease its views on civil partnerships within the Church. The Evangelical Council, which is the umbrella organisation for the evangelical groups within the Church, has demanded that the Church’s attempts to compromise with the government’s civil partnerships legislation should be withdrawn immediately.

Civil Partnerships - CEEC Response to Bishops

[Anglican Mainstream] August 10, 2005--We are concerned at some of the implications of the recent Pastoral Statement issued by the House of Bishops in response to the Civil Partnerships Act. This recent Act presents the House of Bishops with an unenviable task in responding to morally flawed and societally confusing legislation. Clearly this Act confronts the Church with a challenge to its teaching, practice and discipline to do with matters of human sexuality.

ELCA Recommendations on Homosexuality: A Dangerous Prescription for a Slow and Painful Death

[The Christian Post] August 11, 2005--The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America may become the next church to allow the ordination of self-affirming homosexuals and the blessing of same-sex unions, pending the upcoming votes at the denomination’s church-wide assembly this Friday.

Related article:,1,2904218.story?coll=chi-newsnationworld-hed
Lutheran body near vote on gay rules - Chicago Tribune

Video Games—The New 'Playgrounds of the Self?'

[The Christian Post] August 12, 2005--Just a couple of years ago, I was talking to a group of college students--mostly young men--about pressures, temptations, and challenges that come with living in our postmodern world. Predictably, many of these students mentioned challenges related to technology, such as the availability of internet pornography. What took me by surprise was their near-unanimous judgment that video games represent a persistent pattern of temptation they often find very hard to resist.

It's All About Jesus

[] August 12, 2005--Twenty years ago, Thomas Howard, the brother of devotional writer Elisabeth Elliot, wrote a book titled Evangelical Is Not Enough. His basic argument was that rituals don't necessarily lead to dead religiosity. Instead, sacramental rites and liturgical rhythms can bring us closer to Christ. Howard was an Anglican at the time, and later became Roman Catholic.

I've been on a similar journey. I grew up Baptist, lost my fundamentalist faith, became interested in the ancient traditions of the church, attended a Lutheran parish for a time, and eventually wound up Eastern Orthodox.

Like Howard, I now stand on the opposite side of the liturgical fence from most evangelicals. But I've come to a different conclusion than "evangelical is not enough."

Weblog: ELCA Offers Alternative to 'Father, Son and Holy Spirit'

[] August 12, 2005--Plus: Roberts said Weyerich "no friend," New York wants to ban church use of schools, Anne says Billy at peace, and other stories from online sources around the world.

I Now Pronounce You Husband and Husband

[] August 12, 2005--Homosexual marriage now legal; pressure feared.

Appeals court upholds Pledge in Virginia schools, says 'under God' is constitutional

[Baptist Press] August 11, 2005--A federal appeals court Aug. 10 upheld the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance in Virginia's public schools, ruling that the phrase "under God" does not violate the U.S. Constitution's prohibition of government-established religion.

Ways to prayer for Saudi Arabs; 90-day prayer period underway

[Baptist Press] August 11, 2005-- 90-day period of worldwide prayer for Saudi Arabs recently began and will continue through October. Here are some prayer requests you can use to lift them up....

Taking time alone to pray

[Baptist Press] August 11, 2005--In these days, which are full of incredible “hassles,” everyone needs a regular time alone from others to go to a quiet place and pray. Scripture records many instances of Jesus taking time alone with His Father to refresh Himself and know God’s will for His life....