Nov 20, 2006

Episcopalians are bright Catholics are thick

Below is a quote from the new big chief of the Episcopal Church in America, with a response by Amy Welborn

How many members of the Episcopal Church are there in this country?

About 2.2 million. It used to be larger percentagewise, but Episcopalians tend to be better-educated and tend to reproduce at lower rates than some other denominations. Roman Catholics and Mormons both have theological reasons for producing lots of children.

Episcopalians aren’t interested in replenishing their ranks by having children?

No. It’s probably the opposite. We encourage people to pay attention to the stewardship of the earth and not use more than their portion.

Well, I would respond to this but I'm afraid I'm going to occupied for the next few hours practicing reading the next Henry and Mudge book before I attempt to read it to my 5-year old. 'Cause it's really hard, you know. Oh, and then I'm going to go out and throw my 5th child's dirty diapers in the St. Joseph River. 'Cause I'm a Catholic.

Nov 19, 2006

From 'First Things' Episcopal Church

I have posted this long article from the 'Apostasy' mal list as I thought it amusing and relevant..

First Things ^ | 10/25/2006 | Jordan Hylden

Jordan Hylden writes:

Seeing as how I am a new Episcopalian and still learning about my
church, I attended a public address given a couple weeks back by
Bishop Gene Robinson at General Theological Seminary, in the Chelsea
district of Manhattan. There was a pleasant reception before his
remarks, supplied nicely with wine and hors d'oeuvres platters and
attended by a quietly chattering crowd of 60-year-olds outfitted by
L.L. Bean. Sad to say, I did not know a soul there, and mostly stood
off to one side, listening to people talk about things like the new
art galleries over in Williamsburg. One gentleman politely asked me
if I was there because of my "orientation," to which I responded
that I was in fact simply there out of curiosity. Later on I
reflected that my response could have been taken several ways, but,
as it happened, there was not much time for reflection, and I along
with the L.L. Bean folks soon went inside the chapel for the
evening's talk.

The chapel of course is a beautiful structure, built one hundred and
twenty years ago in the English Gothic Revival mode with donations
from the Morgans, Pierponts, and Vanderbilts, and featuring a
magnificent reredos behind the altar that tastefully reflects the
gender equality that subsists among the saints in glory. It did not
take long for the nave to fill up, although, unfortunately, it took
longer for the event to get started, which gave me ample time to
flip through the pewbooks. (The African-American hymnal looked to be
quite good; the feminist hymnal, however, seemed filled with titles
like "In Praise of Hildegard We Sing.") I had nearly gotten to the
point of thumbing through the BCP church calendar when the Very Rev.
Ward B. Ewing, dean of the seminary, rose to give the welcome, which
of course was quite warm. Following him was Christine Quinn, the
first openly gay speaker of New York's city council, who reminded us
all that "If you believe in yourself, if you define yourself, if you
love yourself, you can overcome any odds that anybody puts in front
of you." This met with loud applause, after which we all sat quietly
in our seats to consider how the glorious company of the saints had
believed in themselves.

The bishop himself was next. He began by thanking Ms. Quinn for her
wise words and reminded us that most places in America—like Iowa,
Georgia, or New Mexico—were not like the Chelsea district of
Manhattan. Indeed, I thought. But that should not deter us, he said,
from going out into the rest of the country to take back religion.
For years, he said, the Church had been the world's greatest
oppressor, until finally, in the 1960s, people began to wake up and
set things straight. People started to realize that what the Church
had taught all along about lots of things just wasn't true, and so
they started acting prophetically as a voice for change. That, he
said, is the true mission of today's Church: To find out where God
is already at work outside the Church and to join God there. Because
I did not grow up in the Chelsea district of Manhattan, this
required a bit of sorting out in my mind, but eventually it all
seemed to fit. "The Church is the world's greatest oppressor," I
reasoned, "but God is at work outside the Church, so our mission as
Christians is to work to change the Church until it becomes like,
you know, those places outside the Church." It still seemed like I
was missing something, but I figured I could think about it later.

Bishop Robinson's talk was, on its surface, all about LGBT
inclusion, but he said it actually was about much more than that. At
its most basic level, it was about the end of patriarchy, which to
him explained why he met with such opposition. The audience nodded
approvingly—civil rights, women's rights, gay rights, and the sexual
revolution were all part of a single struggle for liberation, from
the Man, or something like that. Freedom, justice, and sex were all
the same thing! I liked this idea. Being an Episcopalian, I thought,
was going to be fun.

But if that was the good news, then what came next was the bad news.
Many people, he warned, will be hurt and confused by our prophetic
struggle against patriarchy. Some of them will probably even leave
the Church. And, what's more, we won't even have the same
relationship to something called the "Anglican Communion" anymore..
This all sounded worrying. But, the bishop said, that was just the
price we would have to pay for doing the right thing. If people were
hurt and confused, or if they left the Church, then we would just
have to deal with it later. He reminded us that Jesus was the
ultimate example of someone who did the right thing and paid a price
for it. He told us how, when he was made bishop, he had to wear a
bulletproof vest and have an armed guard standing by, and how they
had made special plans if he had been shot to take him into another
room and make him a bishop before he died. He was being modest, of
course, but we all thought he had been very brave. And although I
had been worried at first, I started to feel sort of tough and
rebellious. Maybe, I thought, I could be as brave as Gene Robinson
some day. I stopped thinking about those people who would be hurt or
confused. They would just have to get with the program.

Next, it was time for the question-and-answer session, and I was
lucky enough to ask the bishop about something that had been
bothering me. "Do you think," I asked, "that conservatives from
places like South Carolina and progressives from places like New
Hampshire should stay together in the same church?" Bishop Robinson
gave a surprising answer—yes, he said, they should stay together,
because part of the genius of Anglicanism is keeping everybody
together no matter what. The audience members puzzled over this. On
the one hand, being tolerant and inclusive people, we didn't want to
tell people what to do or push anybody away. But on the other hand,
wasn't taking back religion from the conservatives the whole point
of all this? Aren't the conservatives in the Church the world's
greatest oppressors—just the people we're fighting against? This
seemed strange to me, but I supposed that maybe it would be all
right so long as the conservatives stayed in far-off places like
South Carolina, where they belonged. Although, I didn't think that
everyone in the audience liked the bishop's answer, and I wasn't
sure that I did, either.

Finally, it was time for one last question. A gentleman in the back
stood up and asked, "What do you think we need to do to save General
Theological Seminary?" This came as quite a surprise to me—how could
such a nice seminary need to be saved? But apparently it was true.
Bishop Robinson, who was on the board of the seminary, said that the
building plans would have to go forward if the seminary were to be
saved. I wasn't quite sure what that all meant, but later on I found
out that the seminary was almost bankrupt and wanted to knock down
its library and put an apartment building there instead. It seemed
to make sense, although it was very sad—it explained why there was
so much old scaffolding on the buildings (sort of like the Cathedral
of St. John the Divine up on Morningside Heights), and why there
were plastic sheets on the library books to keep them from getting
wet when the roof leaked. But that wasn't even the saddest part. It
turned out that the seminary's neighbors in Chelsea weren't letting
them put up the apartment building. They thought it would be too
noisy and ugly, and they wanted things to stay just the way they
were. The neighbors, it turned out, didn't much like the seminary at
all. They had even organized petition drives and protests to tell
the seminary so.

I didn't understand any of this. Before I had felt all tough and
cool, fired up and ready to take religion back from the
conservatives, but now it seemed like even our friends in the
Chelsea district of Manhattan didn't want us anymore. "How could
they do this?" I thought. Many of them were gay, and we were
sticking up for them! We were doing the right thing! Acting
prophetically, no matter what! It was all very sad, and I started to
wonder if anyone cared about the Episcopal Church anymore. People
had started to file out of the chapel by this point, and I started
to follow them. As I did, I overheard a young man about my age say
to his friend, "You know, I agree with his politics and everything,
but I'm not religious, so this wasn't all that interesting to me. I
bet my dad would have liked it, though."

I was pretty depressed, and I started walking glumly back to my
apartment. On my way home, I passed by an old Episcopal church that
seemed sort of different from normal churches—it didn't say anything
about services, but there was a back door open, with loud music
playing inside and a bunch of kids standing out front. I looked
closer, and realized what had happened. Why, it had been turned into
a nightclub! Loud and exciting music thrummed from inside the
sanctuary, where young people like me were dancing and drinking and
having a good time. I thought back to what I had learned earlier
that night, about how freedom and justice and sex were all the same
thing, and how being the Church meant joining the world in the
struggle against patriarchy. Finally, I started to feel good again.
It was going to be a tough fight, but there would be lots of fun
along the way. I smiled, looking up at the nightclub-church, and
thought that maybe we were starting to get it right after all.

Jordan Hylden is a junior fellow at First Things.

Church gone MAD!!

I came upon this website
Canada Church website recently. If it was not so sad it would be really funny. At first I thought it was a spoof site. Then I discovered it it actually genuine and cost the Church of Canada a bundle of dollars.
Check out the forums, they are absolutely hilarious. There are 'real' people actually discussing 'hot topics' such as 'should children have talking Jesus dolls'.
This is cutting edge discussion on the important issues.

Nov 17, 2006

Ding Dong Bell, No Joy with Dell

All their customer Service staff must still be ill!!.I have abandoned my attempt to purchase a computer from Dell, and I am rather pleased as I went along to my local 'Comet' dealer and purchased an 'Acer' laptop improved spec. and cheaper than Dell. With the added benefit that as I was buying a computer the printe I purchased had £10 knocked of the price. I have saved about £20 and if anything goes wrong at least I will have someone to speak to. I know a number of folks who have bought from Dell and have had no problems, but if anything does go wrong their customer service if it actually exists?? is extremly poor.
So as Dell slowly sink into the West we say farewell for ever.

Nov 8, 2006

BBC Reporting on Palestine

Israeli shelling kills 18 in Gaza

This is one of the headlines on BBC News today. I am not disputing the truth of this statement, though the report goes on to say it is from 'Palestinian sources'. What suddenly struck me about these reports I cannot remember any that say something like 'Palestinian rocket attack on Israel'. Israel is always mentioned first and then somewhere in the article Palestinian attacks get a mention. Even when they are mentioned the implication is that the Israeli response is over the top as the missiles 'rarely kill anyone'. I wondered if the Israeli response should be to fire unguided rockets back, and whenever there is a suicide bomb on say a bus, the Israel bombs a Palestinian bus. From the way the BBC report what is happening this might be quite acceptable to them.

Nov 6, 2006

Disaster with Dell, I tried to buy a Laptop

On 16th October I tried to purchase a Dell laptop over the telephone. What a disasterous joke this has become.
I had not heard anything from Dell after 14 days, I decided to ring the number I had been given, this number included a extension number to use where I would get in immediate touch with the actual person I originally spoke to if anything goes wrong. Now this is good sales service I thought. Well you know what thought did?. Unfortunately the first time I rang the nice Indian gentleman Kumar is his name by the way, said on his answerphone he is out of the Office, too bad I think I will ring again, so I rang the next day and the next day, and the next day. O dear Kumar must be ill I think, but he has very kindly given me another number to ring. This time a nice Indian lady, sadly she is out of the office, well she has got to have her dinner sometime I think, so I ring again, and again.... Now I am getting a little concerned, maybe some epidemic has struck, I have read that in India there are some strange tropical diseases. So I search the Dell site for a number to ring, find one 'Customer Care' it is called. So I ring atlast someone still alive another Indian gentleman, very nicely, who assures me Kumar is alive and well. He will put a message in 'his box', his words, and Kumar will get back to me. Three days later Kumar must still be sick, or maybe the person I spoke to recently has also been struck down. I now decide to email the complaints department, actually called 'Customer Assistance' I email my concerns one being that Kumar has taken my credit card details and I am worried that in his feverish state he may divulge them to others. The form I fill in is headed
" If somehow we have not delivered the quality of service you deserve as a Dell customer, please complete this form"

I am now really concerned, maybe I have done something terrible and I 'deserve' this treatment. Also I am concerned that my case number is as follows 20061104134853362. Is this the number of other who people have 'deserved' this 'quality of service'. Three days later no reply to my email. I decide to ring again,(I must be mad). I try Kumar for one last time, he is still 'sick', though his answer machine message has been updated. I ring 'Customer Care' I now realise this name is just part of the evil sense of humour they have at Dell. I get another charming Indian lady called I think 'Sunny'. She asks me lots of questions and assures me she can help, I am feeling quite relaxed. She says hold the line and she will put me through to the person who can really help me. The phone rings my saviour is about to answer. 'You have reached the mail box of Kumar, I am out of the office..........aargh.


Technorati Profile

Nov 5, 2006

Strange Site 'Episcopal Majority'

I came upon this strange site, by chance recently. It purports to be the majority of Episcopalians who are getting together to fight a group of evil traditionlists who are attempting to take over the world and the Episcopal Church in America. Apparently the arch fiends involved in this evil attack are black people from Africa, from that part of the world that used to be blank on the old maps before the British Empire(another evil thing) One of the odd things about this group is they are also all members of other groups fighting the evil blacks, groups which have such names as 'Integrity' and 'Via Media'(middle way for the ignorant). Another group calls itself 'Thinking Anglicans' as opposed to non 'Thinking Anglicans'. One member I spotted was even a Druid. Episcopal Majority!!!

Episcopal Majority

Nov 4, 2006

Pair cleared over Jelly Baby race attacks

Quotes from 'Metro'
"The Crown Prosecution Service defended its actions today after two London Underground workers were cleared of racial harassment following allegations that they taunted a colleague over black Jelly Babies.

A jury found Victor Cooney, 47, and Carlos Rozza, 44, not guilty after an eight-day trial at Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court.

It was alleged that the two men teased Daniel Jean Marie, who is black, by discussing black Jelly Babies and biting the heads off the sweets.

But the pair were cleared after just one hour of deliberation by the jury.

A spokesman for the Crown Prosecution Service said today: "This was an allegation of serious racial abuse and we have to take such allegations seriously.

"We believe there was a clear case to answer and the case did run its full course. We respect the jury's decision."

The spokesman said that the CPS were not able to provide costs on individual cases.
Estimates are for around £250,000

"If the Crown Prosecution Service had reviewed this case properly at the initial stages then this case would never have been brought before the Crown Court."

Conservative MP Mike Penning said the trial was a waste of money and police time.

He said: "We are desperate for police on our streets. But if taxpayers' cash is wasted on ridiculous cases like this, how can we afford it?" The two men were cleared on Wednesday at Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court.

A spokeswoman for Transport for London (TfL) said today: "All allegations of harassment and racist behaviour are investigated. Whether or not to prosecute is a decision for the CPS.""
No more comment needed!!

Nov 1, 2006

How Farepak Stole Christmas aided by HBoS

How Farepak Stole Christmas
On Friday 13th Oct 2006 - Farepak Hampers went into administration. Over 100,000 customers were told that no food hampers or vouchers or other goods will be supplied this Christmas as promised, and no refunds!
The story going the rounds is that, money was being collected not for hampers but to pay of the Companies overdraft at Halifax Bank of Scotland. Read more about this at