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  ANiC Newsletter: 18 May, 2013 ... pdf version

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ANiC news

ANiC and ACNA events calendar
May 19, 4pm – The Rev Jesse Martin ordained to priesthood at St Peter & St Paul’s (Ottawa, ON)
June 16, 7pm – Ordinations at Church of Our Lord (Victoria) of Lynne Ellis & Neil Van der Heeden
June 30 – Ordination to the deaconate of evangelist Tom Lo of Good Shepherd, Calgary
October 21-26 – GAFCon 2 international gathering in Nairobi, Kenya
October 31 – November 3 – ANiC Clergy Retreat in New England

Welcome to Christ the King in Edmonton, AB!
A new congregation has formed in Edmonton, under the Rev Roy Dickson. The congregation held their inaugural service April 21 and has now selected a name – Christ the King. They currently meet in a community hall and average about 100 on a given Sunday. Please pray for the people of Christ the King as they work through the emotions and relationship issues associated with leaving their former parish – something many of us in ANiC have also experienced.

Those gathered in Vancouver for the Western and Asian & Multicultural Assemblies were able to sign and send welcome posters to the people of what is now Christ the King.

ANiC Assembly video, audio and photos now available
If you didn’t get to an assembly in mid-April – or even if you did and simply want to listen to some of the sessions again – you’ll be pleased to know that you can access video and audio of the eastern assembly sessions on the ANiC website. Similarly audio of the Vancouver assemblies’ sessions are also posted online. In additions, there are lots of great photos from both the Burlington assembly and the two assemblies in Vancouver.

Presiding Bishop Tito Zavala interview
You will also enjoy an interview with Presiding Bishop Tito Zavala posted at The Living Church website. Sue Careless conducted the interview during the ANiC Eastern Assembly where ++Tito was the keynote speaker. He talks about his province (the Anglican Church of the Southern Cone in South America), about the recent ratification of the episcopal election of Canadian Michael Pollesel as bishop of Uruguay, the relationship between the ACNA and his province, the liberal control of the “machinery” of the Anglican Communion, his own faith journey, Roman Catholicism, and more.

Asked about the Anglican Church in Chile, he responded:
“Most Chilean pastors are full-time priests but we often meet in schools. Our church services can be three or four hours long. If the sermon is less than an hour, the pastor is not considered a good preacher. People sometimes walk 1½ hours to get to church. Some services begin at 11, stop at 1 for lunch and resume from 2 until 4.”

Ordinations, Confirmations & Baptisms – God is at work in our midst!
On Pentecost Sunday
(May 19), at St Peter & St Paul’s 10:30am service, Bishop Charlie Masters will confirm a candidate. Then that afternoon at 4pm, the Rev Jesse Martin is to be ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Charlie. Jesse serves as curate at St Peter & St Paul’s with responsibility for youth, young adults, and young families. Please pray for Jesse, his wife Jen and their two young children. Jesse is another product of the Artizo ministry leadership training program.

Also on May19, Bishop Don Harvey administers the Sacrament of Confirmation to three young people and three adults at Grace Church Calgary – which, incidentally, marks Grace’s second anniversary. The same day, Bishop Stephen Leung confirms candidates at Good Shepherd Vancouver.

June 16 service of ordination at Church of Our Lord in Victoria, BC for Lynne Ellis and Neil Van der Heeden will be held at 7pm. Lynne and Neil would appreciate your prayer and encouragement.

Three adults are to be baptized at Good Shepherd Calgary on Sunday,
May 26, bringing the total number of baptisms in this new church plant of 30 members to eight in less than a year. About half of those attending Good Shepherd Calgary are seekers. On June 30, Good Shepherd Calgary’s Evangelist Tom Lo will be ordained to the deaconate by Bishop Stephen Leung.

Praise the Lord for His work in our midst!

ANiC jobs
Several ANiC job openings were posted. If you know of qualified candidates, please refer them to the ANiC website. The latest postings include:
• Administrative assistant at the ANiC national office in Burlington
• Executive director at St John’s Vancouver

Recife project in home stretch!
Anglican Relief and Development Fund Canada has now received donations of around $40,000 toward our project in northeastern Brazil. The project is building an education and training centre to help the Diocese of Recife serve the literacy and educational needs of a poor community, as well as train diocesan missionaries to go to unreached parts of Brazil.

St Stephen the Martyr just raised $218.45 for the Recife project by collecting pennies over the past six weeks – 5300 pennies from one donor alone! That’s a lot of pennies to count and roll.

We now have about 2/3 of the needed funds for the project. You can see video, photos and other information on the project here. And you can watch video – or listen to an MP3 – of Claus Lenk’s presentation to the Eastern Assembly as well as his discussion with Archbishop Tito Zavala about this and other ARDFC-related projects.

ANiC members March for Life
For the first time ANiC had official representation at the Ottawa March for Life on 9 May 2013. See photos of those waving the ANiC banner in the Ottawa march. A full report on the event, which drew a record 25,000 marchers to the nation’s capital, is on LifeSiteNews.

Archdeacon Ron Corcoran says of a corresponding event in Victoria, BC:
“Church of Our Lord held a prayer meeting for March for Life today [May 9] and participated in the march to the Legislature. We did this as we are trying to get a Protestant evangelical prayer presence to support our brothers and sisters in the Roman Catholic Church – who are the main organizers of these events.”

On May 12th, the pope briefly, but unexpectedly, joined the 40,000 who turned out for the March for Life in Rome, Italy.

Next year let’s plan to field a strong ANiC presence in the March for Life and other life-affirming events. This is an issue we must take a stand on as has been so graphically demonstrating by the horrific evidence presented in the Philadelphia trial of abortionist Kermit Gosnell who was tried and convicted of multiple murder charges. If you haven’t heard about this trial, you’re not alone. There has been a virtual media black-out as discussed in this Fox interview with one of the few reporters who has dared to buck the tide of political correctness.

It is said that Gosnell’s horrifying practices are relatively common in abortuaries. One abortionist in Texas is under investigation for allegedly twisting the heads off living newborns. And LifeSiteNews reports that disabled infants are killed legally in The Netherlands, where euthanasia is common and frequently occurs without the consent of the person killed.

William Saunders of the Institute on Religion and Democracy, in a short, thought-provoking commentary, warns:
“Kermit Gosnell got the verdict he deserved – his wanton cruelty in killing born-alive infants and his callous disregard for the women who came to him are revolting… But, though he did appalling things, it is dangerous to demonize him. Gosnell… operated in a society that permits the dismemberment of the same infants so long as they are in their mother’s womb… Gosnell demonstrates what can happen to us… When we start to see some humans as fundamentally unequal, as being fit subjects for lethal violence, we begin a process of dehumanization that, in a kind of twisted logic, leads to the horrors Kermit Gosnell committed…What will we do to make our society more just and more compassionate?”

Dr Albert Mohler, in an excellent commentary, writes:
“What the Gosnell trial revealed is not the exceptional gruesomeness of a single clinic in Philadelphia. It reveals the truth that all Americans are, by our laws, complicit in Dr Gosnell’s evil. The real scandal is not just the babies murdered outside the womb, but the millions aborted legally – torn apart by blades, suctioned out as waste, poisoned unto death by drugs…Dr Gosnell is not alone in having the blood of babies on his hands”.

Parish and regional news
St Aidan’s (Windsor, ON) rector, Canon Tom Carman, thanks all who have prayed and continue to pray for St Aidan’s legal appeal which was heard May 7 in Toronto. He reports, “The hearing went quite well, I thought. Our legal counsel put forward a very strong case on our behalf and was able to respond convincingly to the diocese's arguments. Now we wait.” There is no word on when a decision can be expected.

St Peter & St Paul’s (Ottawa, ON) rector the Rev Paul Donison writes from personal experience how you can support your priest and his/her family when they have a chronically sick child.

St Peter’s Fireside, a church community being planted by St John’s Vancouver and under the leadership of church planter Alastair Stern, held the first of three “preview services” on May 5 in their future downtown Vancouver venue. 215 people attended. The preview services are intended to give a sneak peek at what St Peter’s Fireside will be like once it launches on November 3. St Peter’s Fireside is committed to “joining God in the renewal of all things”. Its mission is “To see the city of Vancouver renewed spiritually, socially, and culturally through communities transformed by the gospel, all for the glory of God.” The next preview service will be July 21, at 10:45am at the University of British Columbia’s Robson Square Campus.

Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) news

New ACNA diocese forming in the mid-west US
VirtueOnline reports that a new ACNA diocese, the Anglican Diocese of the Upper Midwest, is being formed and will be seeking approval from the ACNA House of Bishops when they meet in June in Nashotah House, Wisconsin. David Virtue says this diocese-in-formation includes parishes in Wisconsin, northern Illinois, Minnesota, and Iowa.

ACNA expected to approve a chaplaincy diocese-in formation
The leadership of the ACNA is also expected to approve a "Diocese of the Armed Forces and Chaplaincy" as a diocese-in-formation in ACNA. According to a fascinating VirtueOnline interview with Bishop Derek Jones who leads the current Deanery for the Chaplaincy, the group has grown from one chaplain in 2007 to more than 200 clergy today – which would make it among the largest dioceses in ACNA in terms of clergy members.

Bishop Jones says,
“In this culture as people face life-altering events and death outside of a church relationship, Chaplains become the instrument by which an unchurched nation and populace can find hope, love, comfort and salvation. This is what the chaplain ministry is all about. I am pleased to be associated with such a highly select group of gospel ministers serving in our military, prisons, hospitals, law enforcement... and the list goes on. They do a Gospel work that is oft unappreciated and that work is also often alone and in austere places. It takes a very special person with very specialized training to be a chaplain... and I thank God that we have the very best representing the ACNA in service to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

The Falls Church (Virginia) appeals court ruling
The Falls Church is challenging the court decision which depriving the congregation of its historic home. In a news release, the ACNA congregation said.
“…we decided to file an application for rehearing with the Virginia Supreme Court, explaining why we believe the Court's decision was in error. We find it particularly troubling that the decision was based on an argument that had never, in seven years of court proceedings, been presented by the other side. As a result, we had no opportunity to address it in our briefs. Our lawyers will therefore be filing a short petition with the Court in a few days. We expect a ruling in the next few months.”

Despite the appeal, the congregation will continue its search for a permanent home. Because of the large size of the congregation, the church has had difficulty finding facilities, so moves about. Its website notes that on May 5, more than 100 new members were confirmed. The current edition of Anglican Unscripted video newsmagazine explores the reasons for The Falls Church appeal – and much, much more.

A piece on the Time magazine website discusses the losses of church property by ACNA congregations, specifically The Falls Church in Virginia. The author writes:
“The sexual revolution has accomplished what even the fractious Reformation could not. It has divided Protestantism so deeply that traditionalist Anglicans now have more in common with traditionalist Lutherans or even Roman Catholics, say, than with the reformers in their own denominations. And as the proliferation of stricter Anglican churches of Africa go to show, this traditionalism has gone global.

“A second fact embedded in this story also has worldwide repercussions. That traditionalist breakaway congregation in Virginia is larger than the one on the legally winning side — as in, much. Membership on the “losing” side, by one estimate, includes some 2,000 souls, as opposed to some 174 in the congregation moving in… It’s the stricter Christian churches that typically have stronger and more vibrant congregations — as has been documented at least since Dean M. Kelley’s 1996 book, Why Conservative Churches Are Growing.

“Traditionalists may be on the losing end of historic real estate, at least for now, as well as booed out of the public square for their views on sex. Down the road, though, they still look to possess something else critical — a growing congregation without which every church, after all, is just a bed and breakfast waiting to happen.”

ACNA parish loses property in a “head-shaker” decision
Anglican Ink reports that an Orange County Superior Court judge has ruled that St James (Newport Beach, CA) must hand over its property to the Episcopal Church because the former bishop of Los Angles had exceeded his jurisdiction in providing the congregation with a written assurance in 1991 that the diocese relinquished all claim on the property. The summary judgement preempted the anticipated trial which was to have begun May 6.

St James’ response to the decision notes,
“St. James, a congregation of approximately 700, has worshipped at the Lido Isle property since 1949. In 1991, before purchasing the adjacent parcel and raising funds from its members to build an entirely new sanctuary and administrative offices, St. James asked for a letter from the Diocese waiving any ownership claims, which the Diocese provided. In 2004, after longstanding differences of opinion, St. James’ congregation voted to disaffiliate from the Diocese and the national Episcopal Church. Both then sued the Newport Beach church, claiming ownership of the 11 year old buildings.” An appeal has not been ruled out.

Writing in his blog, canon lawyer Alan Haley calls the decision “seriously flawed” and a “travesty of justice”. In his opinion, this ruling has the unintended effect of throwing into question the titles of every property the Episcopal Church has sold in California since 1980, since they now would be subject to the Church’s Dennis Canon trust. It also means that the diocese will not be able to sell any properties in the future without the action of the Church’s General Convention. In a second blog post, Mr Haley suggests the decision also means that the then bishop of the diocese made a false representation to potential donors in 1991 which lead to their giving large sums of money to purchase property for the parish.

Last week’s edition of the Anglican Unscripted video newsmagazine discusses the St James case as well as the other legal proceedings involving Anglican and Episcopal bodies in the US. A decision is expected soon in the ACNA Diocese of Fort Worth case and the ACNA Diocese of Quincy case was heard at the end of April. (More detail on the Quincy trial is on VirtueOnline.) The commentators also interview Canadian Anglican blogger David Jenkins who is facing legal action brought by Bishop Michael Bird of the Anglican Church of Canada Diocese of Niagara.

ANCA congregation abandons legal fight; finds new facility and new ministry partner
The Modesto Bee has a nice story of how the parishioners of St Francis Anglican Church in Turlock, CA found a new facility and a new partner in ministering to the community with a Christian Church of another denomination. When the Anglican priest approached the pastor of the neighbouring church, the pastor told him,
“‘We've been praying for a year to find another church to come alongside and do ministry with us. I think this will be a perfect fit.'” The people of St Francis walk away from their long-time property tomorrow and begin anew as Grace Anglican.

Grace’s experience mirrors that of many ANiC and ACNA congregations as God is breaking down denominational barriers and building unity within His Bride, the Church.

Anglican Communion

More details released of GAFCon 2 global gathering – October 21-26 in Nairobi
A news release outlining the 2nd Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCon) notes that the theme for this by-invitation-only event will be “Making Disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ”. GAFCon 2013 is organized by the leadership of the Global Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (GFAC) which was birthed at GAFCon 2008 in Jerusalem. “The aims of the GFCA are to proclaim and defend the apostolic gospel within and beyond the Anglican Communion and to recognise and share fellowship with orthodox Anglicans globally, especially those who have been disaffiliated by false teaching and behaviour.” Please pray for this landmark event, for wisdom in preparations, for expectant, humble hearts, and for God to be glorified in and through GAFCon 2013.

In the May 1 American Anglican Council newsletter, Canon Phil Ashey outlines the need for this second global gathering of Biblically faithful Anglicans – which will serve as a time for mutual encouragement, for refocusing on the Gospel message, and for reenergizing for mission. He says,
“GAFCON II will be a missions conference. Worship and Bible study will be highlights of the conference. Global networking among orthodox believers from many nations could shape Anglican partnerships and international mission for decades to come.”

Other news in brief

Correction: In the 29 April 2013 newsletter, Robert Couture was incorrectly said to be an Anglican Church of Canada priest. He is a Roman Catholic priest.

The defamation lawsuit initiated by
Bishop Michael Bird of the Anglican Church of Canada’s Diocese of Niagara against a Canadian blogger, David Jenkins, has been getting a lot of media coverage including articles in the Hamilton Spectator, United Press International, various Anglican blogs, and even the Anglican Journal where it has generated significant reader comment. According to a Church of England Newspaper article, the blogger’s overtures to negotiate a settlement were rejected. Ironically, the lawsuit, which seeks $400,000 in damages, has multiplied the number of people aware of the material Bishop Bird considered defamatory.

Diocese of Rupert’s Land has published a protocol, developed by the bishop and clergy of the diocese, “for the Pastoral practice of blessing same-sex unions.” The article and protocol summary is on page 5 of the May 5, 2013 edition of the diocesan newsletter.

The Anglican Samizdat draws attention to an academic paper chronicling the declining membership of the Anglican Church of Canada since the mid-1960s. However, since the Church has not made public its statistics since 2001, recent data is missing.

United States
Bishop Charles von Rosenberg, who was appointed by the Episcopal Church (TEC) to lead the few Episcopalians choosing not to move with Bishop Mark Lawrence and the
Diocese of South Carolina in disaffiliating from the national organization, has written the clergy of Bishop Lawrence’s diocese giving them two weeks to return to the national church or face deposition. An article in the Church of England Newspaper notes that, “The legality of the bishop’s letter has not been clarified as the Episcopal Church in South Carolina is not a member of the General Convention of the Episcopal Church and its Bishop would appear to lack authority to make such demands.”

Preaching in Curacao, Venezuela,
Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori offered a novel exegesis of Acts 16:16-40, the account which begins with Paul, by the power of the Holy Spirit, freeing a slave girl from demon possession. Her interpretation is that the demon is actually the slave girl’s “gift of spiritual awareness” of which Paul mean-spiritedly deprives her. Bishop Schori’s full sermon is posted on the Episcopal Church News Service website, where you can also read the shocked comments posted below it. She said:
Paul is annoyed at the slave girl who keeps pursuing him, telling the world that he and his companions are slaves of God. She is quite right. She’s telling the same truth Paul and others claim for themselves. But Paul is annoyed, perhaps for being put in his place, and he responds by depriving her of her gift of spiritual awareness. Paul can’t abide something he won’t see as beautiful or holy, so he tries to destroy it. It gets him thrown in prison. That’s pretty much where he’s put himself by his own refusal to recognize that she, too, shares in God’s nature, just as much as he does - maybe more so! 

The Independent reports that Church of England bishops who sit in the
House of Lords have an abysmal record of participation in the House of Lords – with attendance records as low as 5 per cent. “Frank Field, a former Labour minister and ex-member of the Church of England General Synod, has launched a stinging attack on bishops who criticise government policies and yet do not bother to vote against them when they have the chance…. The former Welfare Reform minister said that 43 bishops issued a statement criticising the Government's welfare cuts in March. But only six of the 16 who sit in the Lords turned up when the House debated them and only one took part in all four votes… Mr Field said: "It may be that the Church of England now appoints bishops who feel they have nothing to say to the nation on the great ethical issues of the day. Some could quite legitimately believe that their time would be better spent in their dioceses. But it surely cannot be impossible for bishops, who sign protest letters, to so organise their diaries that they can turn up and put their votes where their mouths are."”

Complaints against
Bishop Wallace Benn, retired bishop of Lewes and long-time friend of ANiC, have been dismissed because the allegations were unfounded. These complaints, brought under the Clergy Discipline Measure in November 2011, dogged and hindered the last year of Bishop Benn’s ministry and have resulted in ongoing one-sided media coverage to which Bishop Benn was unable to respond given the ongoing investigation. In a statement, Bishop Benn writes, “All their efforts were misconceived and unjustified, as has now been established.. [T]hese last 18 months have certainly involved, as Lord Justice Mummery described it, a one-sided and unjust process of trial by media. I and, at times, my family have indeed been on the receiving end of a media circus, orchestrated by unknown people with, it seems, no interest in the truth or the ministry of the church.”

A National Day of Prayer for Marriage has been called for Sunday, June 2. The following day the House of Lords is expected to vote on bill which would redefine marriage.

Archbishop Peter Jensen retiring, the Diocese of Sydney will soon elect his successor. You can see who the candidates are here.

The Diocese of Bolivia has consecrated Archdeacon
Raphael Samuel as its bishop, replacing Bishop Frank Lyons who now serves as Archbishop Bob Duncan’s suffragan in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. Bishop Samuel, a Singaporean Tamil, was sent to Bolivia by the Diocese of Singapore in 1993. He is the first Anglican bishop of Asian descent to serve in Latin America.

Bishop Julian Dobbs, a speaker at ANiC’s November 2012 synod, recently met with a number of Syrian church leaders, including Syrian Greek Orthodox, Syrian Maronite Catholic, and Syrian Presbyterian leaders. Bishop Dobbs writes, “Until early 2011, Syria's churches were large (about 10% of the population), and Christians were respected by the Muslim majority… But all this has changed dramatically for the worse since hostilities between the government and opposition forces broke out… Tens of thousands of Christians have been displaced from their homes by threats and violence... The city of Homs was almost completely cleared of its population of 50-60,000 Christians. Houses have been ransacked, and believers kidnapped for ransom or gruesomely murdered… Many churches and other Christian buildings have been bombed… Christians… are particularly targeted by rebel fighters… An Islamic cleric has issued a fatwa saying it is "legitimate" for Islamist fighters to rape non-Sunni, non-Muslim women.”

Christians from across denominations gathered in several communities in Syria on May 11 for a
day of prayer and fasting, pleading with God for His mercy on Syria and an end to violence. They ask that we continue to pray for Syria too – specifically for peace, reconciliation, healing, unity among Christians, God’s provision for those driven from their home, and conviction and repentance on the part of those perpetrating the violence. Additional prayer requests can be found on the World Evangelical Alliance website.

A Fox News article detailing the “war” on Christians in Islamist states reports that
“A mass exodus of Christians is currently underway. Millions of Christians are being displaced from one end of the Islamic world to the other… all around the Islamic world—in nations that do not share the same race, language, culture, or economics, in nations that share only Islam—Christians are being persecuted into extinction. Such is the true face of extremist Islamic resurgence.”

Anglican Mainstream draws attention to a new book by William Kilpatrick: Christianity, Islam, and Atheism which “… opens with a section titled
“The Islamic Threat,” in which Kilpatrick describes the rise of supremacist Islam and our correspondingly tepid defense of Western values. Our collapse in the face of Islam, he says, is due in large part to our abandonment of Christianity, which has led to “a population vacuum and a spiritual vacuum” that Islam has rushed to fill. “A secular society… can’t fight a spiritual war,” Kilpatrick writes… Kilpatrick notes that Christians today have lost all cultural confidence and are suffering a “crisis of masculinity”, thanks to the feminizing influences of multiculturalism and feminism.”

International Christian Concern reports that more than 140 children from Christian homes have been rescued from Islamic training centres where they were taken under false pretenses. The impoverished, marginalized Christians families, desperate for a better life for their children, understood the children were being given the opportunity to get a Christian education in the capital city However, once in the capital, Dhaka, the children were enslaved, forcibly converted to Islam, and many used in the sex trade. Many more children are still missing.

Devastating floods on May 1 promoted the Bishop of South Rwenzori to appeal for aid. The floods killed several, displaced more that 3000 and destroying homes, buildings and bridges.

Sudan & South Sudan
The Church of England Newspaper carries a report
“that since December 2012, there had been “an increase in arrests, detentions and deportations of Christians and… a systematic targeting of members of African ethnic groups, particularly the Nuba, lending apparent credence to the notion of the resurgence of an official agenda of Islamisation and Arabisation… The campaign of repression [has] continued into 2013, with foreign Christians being arrested and deported at short notice, and those from Sudan facing arrest, detention and questioning by the security services.”

Another Church of England Newspaper article notes that Anglican
“Archbishop of the Sudan Daniel Deng has offered to negotiate between the South Sudan government and rebel leader David Yau Yau to end the fighting in Jonglei state… For the past three years the Archbishop has helped broker deals between rebel leaders and the government in South Sudan.”

The Church of England Newspaper reports that recent
violence in Mozambique has raised fears of a return to the 16-year-long civil war which ended in 1992, a war that killed more than one million people.

International Christian Concern reports that Christians in Somalia continue to be hunted, tortured and killed by al-Shabaab, a powerful extremist Muslim group. Among the recent victims was a mother of five, whose husband had been killed in 2012. Somalia is one of the most dangerous places in the world for Christians.

Soul food

Introverted pastors – Pastor John Piper, speaking as an introvert himself, discusses how introverts can succeed as pastors.

Fighting Christianly – Pastor J C Greear offers “10 ways to fight like a Christian”.

Dating Christianly – Young adults, parents of young adults and pastors counseling young adults will be interested in a new book recommended by Pastor Tim Challies: Sex, Dating, and Relationships by Gerald Hiestand and Jay Thomas.

Defending traditional marriage and families – Ryan Anderson, in an 8-minute YouTube video, provides clear concise responses to many of the arguments for redefining marriage. In a USA Today interview Roman Catholic Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone offers a similar defense of marriage.

Economist Jennifer Roback Morse discusses how she is able to argue on university campuses against the redefinition of marriage – and the destruction of the historic family unit – by demonstrating the growing economic fall-out beginning with the introduction of no-fault divorce over 40 years ago. She notes that,
“By one estimate we’re spending over $100 billion dollars a year on dealing with the consequences of out-of-wedlock childbearing and family breakup and family breakdown [through] the criminal justice system and the cost of welfare, health, and education.”

Pentecost – From the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada’s newsletter: “Author Fred Fulford encourages us to share our own “Pentecost stories” with our children and grandchildren – as well as stories of salvation, provision, judgment and direction. Such family stories are one of the best ways to teach our children and grandchildren theology, according to his article at the EFC website, Canada’s Christian library online.”

Hymn stories – Tim Challies has compiled the stories behind a number of the best-loved hymns, including Just As I Am.  Although this hymn has been popular at evangelistic crusades, it was originally written by an invalid who, distressed by feelings of worthlessness, took her feelings in hand and reassured herself by putting into seven stanzas of verse the teaching of Scripture.

Just as I am - without one plea - But that Thy blood was shed for me;
And that Thou bidst me come to Thee. O Lamb of God, I come!

Just as I am - though toss’d about - With many a conflict, many a doubt;
Fightings and fears within, without. O Lamb of God, I come!

Just as I am - poor, wretched, blind. Sight, riches, healing of the mind,
Yea, all I need, in Thee to find. O Lamb of God, I come!

Just for laughs
Following service one Sunday, the preacher and his wife got into the car for the short drive home. She asked him how he thought the church service went.

The minister shrugged, "The worship was excellent, and I think the prayer and communion times went quite well, but," he continued, "I just don't think the sermon ever got off the ground."

The wife hesitated and then quietly said, "Well, it sure did taxi long enough!"

Our Lord has written the promise of resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in springtime.
Martin Luther

And now a Word from our Sponsor
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death…

If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.

Romans 8:1-2, 11-17 ESV

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