map of occupied west bank
Map of West Bank

I believe it is important to start recognising the right of Israel to exist as a state, however ambiguous was its beginning. It is obvious we cannot go back to the situation before 1948.

Also, I really doubt a two state solution is viable anymore. A short glimpse at the Schweitzer-like map of West Bank above, with the separating wall of shame, with all the Israeli settlements and roads, built on stolen Palestinian land, should convince you of that. Peace and occupation, with its apartheid-like separation is totally incompatible with peace. Violence, on both sides, as condemnable as it is, is unavoidable if the present status quo continues.

The right to return for the over 700,000 Palestinian pushed out of their homes in the Nakhba is very problematic, and controversial, because of its demographic implications, which would make impossible the present anachronistic and unsustainable definition of Israel as an ethnic state. But its a priori refusal by the Israeli government makes impossible for the Palestinians to accept the right of Israel to exist.
Read More…

Bishop Angaelos

As the widespread violence and aggression facing Christians and minority groups in Mosul, Iraq, intensifies, it is increasingly evident that the fundamental right and freedom to practice one’s Faith and belief is, and continues to be, grossly violated.

We are currently witnessing an unacceptable widespread implementation of extremist religious ideology that threatens the lives of all Iraqi’s who do not fit within its ever-narrowing perspective. While this situation stands to eradicate centuries of co-existence and culture in the region it also threatens to significantly and negatively impact these communities for generations to come. If left unchallenged, it is not Iraq alone that is at risk, but the potential is intensified for the replication of this ideology as a viable and legitimate model for others across the Middle East. Read More…

Posted by: DanutM | 25 July 2014

Richard Rohr – Forgiving Ourselves

NOTE: This is part of an exceptional series of meditations from Fr. Rohr. I encourage you all to read them. And, if you like them, you may subscribe HERE to the dauly newsletter.

* * *

Perhaps the most difficult forgiveness, the greatest letting go, is to forgive ourselves for doing it wrong. We need to realize that we are not perfect, and we are not innocent. “One learns one’s mystery at the price of one’s innocence” says Robertson Davies. If I want to maintain an image of myself as innocent, superior, or righteous, I can only do so at the cost of truth. I would have to reject the mysterious side, the shadow side, the broken side, the unconscious side of almost everything. We have for too long confused holiness with innocence, whereas holiness is actually mistakes overcome and transformed, not necessary mistakes avoided.

Letting go is different than denying or repressing. To let go of it, you have to admit it. You have to own it. Letting go is different than turning it against yourself. Letting go is different than projecting it onto others. Letting go means that the denied, repressed, rejected parts of myself are seen for what they are. You see it and you hand it over to God. You hand it over to history. You refuse to let the negative story line that you’ve wrapped yourself around define your life. Read More…

Posted by: DanutM | 25 July 2014

World Vision Update on Gaza

A World Vision update.

Please pray for peace in Palestine and Israel.

Posted by: DanutM | 25 July 2014

A Call to Prayer for Donetsk Christian Unicerzity

Donetsk Christian University

Dear  Friends and Colleagues in the Kingdom of God and in the field of theological  education,  greetings.  I  would like to share with you a word  from  Oleksii  Melnychuk,  the  president  of  Donetsk Christian University  (Ukraine),  which  was  occupied  by  the  armed  group of Pro-Russian separatists.

Since  Slavyansk,  Kramatorsk and other cities north of Donetsk have been  freed  from  pro-Russian  separatists,  Donetsk has become the stronghold of the separatists bands of armed soldiers in the region. A  group  of  approximately 2,000 armed soldiers entered the city of Donetsk  and  have occupied the dormitories of universities, schools and hotels.

On  July  9  a  group  of  armed  individuals  from  the separatists Pro-Russian   group,   named  “Oplot”,  came  to  Donetsk  Christian University  (hereafter known as DCU) and demanded that we vacate the university’s  student dormitory for their use. By the end of the day they  brought a written directive from the their leader stating that they  are  taking possession DCU building(s) for temporary use to be given back to DCU when the war ends. Read More…

Posted by: DanutM | 24 July 2014

Richard Rohr – Forgiveness Is Letting Go

Forgiveness is simply the religious word for letting go. To forgive reality is to let go of the negative story line, the painful story line that you’ve created for it. If that story line has become your identity, if you are choosing to live in a victim state, an abused consciousness, it gives you a false kind of power and makes you feel morally superior to others. But let me tell you, it will also destroy you. It will make you smaller and smaller as you get older. You will find that you have fewer and fewer people you can trust, fewer and fewer people, if any, that you can love. Life itself becomes a threat. Your comfort zone becomes tinier and tinier. Read More…

Cry-for-Humanity-Gaza

This is a season of weeping and mourning, but it is not void of hope.

Our tears are the bridge between brutality and humanity;

Our tears are the salty gates for seeing a different reality;

Our tears are facing soulless nations and a parched mentality;

Our tears are the dam preventing rivers of animosity.

Read More…

Apostles of Reason

{Note: A have just found out this extremely interesting December 2013 interview with Molly Worthen, the author of the book Apostles of Reason: The Crisis of Authority in American Evangelicalism, published by Oxford University Press.Previously, I have written HERE about this book.

Here is the beginning of it:

* * *

Last month, Molly Worthen traveled to the John C. Danforth Center on Religion & Politics to take part in a symposium for the inaugural Danforth Distinguished Lecture series at Washington University in St. Louis. During her stay, she sat down with Managing Editor Tiffany Stanley to discuss her latest book, Apostles of Reason: The Crisis of Authority in American Evangelicalism, published in November by Oxford University Press. The book charts the intellectual history of modern American evangelicalism, chronicling the movement’s paradoxes, diversity, and internal struggles over the reconciliation of faith and reason.

Worthen is also the author of The Man on Whom Nothing Was Lost: The Grand Strategy of Charles Hill. She has written for such publications as The New York Times, Slate, Christianity Today, and Religion & Politics. In 2012, she joined the faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as an assistant professor of history. This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

R&P: How did you come to this project?

MW: I came to this project out of my background as a journalist. I had observed certain things going on among contemporary American evangelicals that I wanted to explain, particularly trends among young evangelicals. I got very interested in young evangelicals who were protesting what they perceived to be their parents’ Religious Right. These young folks called—or began to call themselves in the 1990s and early 2000s—the Emergent Church. These were Millennials or, in some cases, Gen-Xers, who had grown up in big, white, suburban, politically conservative megachurches and were challenging that heritage by appealing to other parts of the church tradition, acquainting themselves with theology that they had never been exposed to and even looking toward the Catholic tradition.

I just thought: What is the story here? What’s going on? And I tried to reverse-engineer their process and create a kind of genealogy of their ideas. As I did that, I ended up uncovering for myself this story of how one particular theological and political tradition within evangelicalism had come to be so dominant and come to be the public face of evangelicalism in America—despite the fact that evangelicalism is an incredibly diverse, sometimes self-contradictory world. My book tells the story of the intellectual civil war within evangelicalism, the backstory to the rise of the Christian Right. Scholars usually describe this in purely political terms, as a story of backlash against the liberation movements of the 60s and a continuation of the anti-Communist movement. But increasingly, I felt that to really understand what’s going on in this country, even just politically, you have to get into the ideas. You have to start looking at what’s happening in missions, spiritual revivals, the way worship is changing, how all these different communities within this huge subculture that we call evangelicalism are interacting. That’s the only way you can understand today’s landscape.

R&P: From the outset, in the introduction, you note that unlike a lot of these histories, this book is not “a chronicle of the Christian Right.” While that history figures into the book and your narrative has political implications, you write, “We cannot comprehend conservative Protestants, or their place in American culture, solely in terms of ‘values voting.’” By that did you mean that we have to look at the intellectual history and the theology and other factors as well?

MW: I think we have to treat evangelicals seriously as thinkers. That requires going fairly far back in history and tracing their intellectual genealogy back several centuries. Even though the book is focused really on the 1940s forward, I had to do some homework tracing the deep origins of this tradition that I’m calling evangelicalism to explain the more modern context. I ended up with a way of defining evangelicalism that is much broader than ways other scholars have approached it, certainly far broader than one particular political position, and broader than the standard list of doctrines that many scholars find useful. I think talking about a list of doctrines is important and helpful, but I came to think of evangelicals as Protestants who have, for centuries, circled around a shared set of questions rather than shared doctrines. And for any person with a religious worldview, politics is part of a coherent worldview. You can’t break it off and treat it in a vacuum. It is connected to what they are up to in church, the way in which their church is interacting with the world beyond America through missions, the way they’re thinking about their own tradition in liturgy and spiritual experience, and what counts as an authentic connection to the divine. All of this has ramifications for how they live out their faith in the world and at the ballot box. And so it seemed to me that an accurate intellectual and political history had to pay attention to those things.

R&P: Absolutely. And the term evangelical can be pretty unwieldy. You seem to define it in terms of the questions they’re asking. How would you define that term for a lay audience? How did you pinpoint, “These are my evangelicals”?

MW: I wanted a way of defining evangelicals that would allow me to corral people who seemed to be part of the same conversation, who seemed to care about what one another got up to, even if they disagreed radically on nearly every point of doctrine.  I wanted a way to include Mennonites and Pentecostals and Southern Baptists, even if some of these folks would adamantly reject the label of evangelical if you applied it to them because it often implies a particular political position. As I looked at the long stretch of history, the definition that I found interesting and useful was this: evangelicals are Protestants who since aftermath of the Reformation have been circling around three questions. Those questions are: First, how do you reconcile faith and reason? How do you maintain one coherent way of knowing? Second, how do you become sure of your salvation? How do you meet Jesus and develop a relationship with him, to use the language that some evangelicals prefer. And third, how do you reconcile your personal faith with an increasingly pluralistic, secular public sphere?

While these are, in some sense, universal human questions that all human beings who care about the supernatural wrestle with at some level, they have a unique power over evangelicals because evangelicals don’t have a magisterial, central authority to guide them. Now, I know that we should not exaggerate the power that the Vatican has over Catholics. But no matter how furiously many Catholics may quarrel with what the pope says, the pope is still an immensely powerful center of gravity. The magisterium is a structure that frames one shared conversation relating to a shared tradition. Likewise, I would say that liberal Protestants, in practice, treat human reason as their magisterium—either allowing reason to adjudicate their relationship with religious authority, or allowing reason to rule in its own separate sphere. They don’t get too angsty when faith suggests other things about reality than reason does.

In contrast, evangelicals sincerely try to please all the sources of authority in those three questions that I mentioned. They try to satisfy the standards of secular reason and spiritual experience and scripture and do right by the public square. Because they’re torn in these different directions—this is the “crisis of authority” in the book’s subtitle—they have a fraught relationship with the sphere of secular, intellectual life and also politics. I think this is a way in which observers have misunderstood evangelicals. They toss out this epithet “anti-intellectual” and they say, “Evangelicals are anti-intellectual because their community is totally authoritarian and they unthinkingly obey their pastor.” To me, that’s actually the opposite of what’s going on. The truth is that they’re torn by these conflicting authorities, and the resulting confusion and anxiety explains their relationship with secular, modern life.

Read More…

Martin Luther King jr

Sermon delivered on 17 November 1957 at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church [the underlining in the text is mine]. Please find the time to browse through this amazing sermon. You will not be sorry.

I dedicate this to my many enemies (they know who they are) and I pray that, by God’s grace, I love them as Jesus calls me to do it. Kyrie eleison!

I want to turn your attention to this subject: “Loving Your Enemies.” It’s so basic to me because it is a part of my basic philosophical and theological orientation—the whole idea of love, the whole philosophy of love. In the fifth chapter of the gospel as recorded by Saint Matthew, we read these very arresting words flowing from the lips of our Lord and Master: “Ye have heard that it has been said, ‘Thou shall love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy.’ But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven.”

Certainly these are great words, words lifted to cosmic proportions. And over the centuries, many persons have argued that this is an extremely difficult command. Many would go so far as to say that it just isn’t possible to move out into the actual practice of this glorious command. They would go on to say that this is just additional proof that Jesus was an impractical idealist who never quite came down to earth. So the arguments abound. But far from being an impractical idealist, Jesus has become the practical realist. The words of this text glitter in our eyes with a new urgency. Far from being the pious injunction of a utopian dreamer, this command is an absolute necessity for the survival of our civilization. Yes, it is love that will save our world and our civilization, love even for enemies. Read More…

Posted by: DanutM | 23 July 2014

Inclusivist Theologians

DanutM:

An interesting list, for the use of my exclusivist friends.

Originally posted on Wesleyan Arminian:

Below is a list of well known preachers and apologists that have advocated inclusivism.  The list demonstrates that inclusivism is not a modern innovation.  Inclusivists hold that the only way to be saved is through Jesus Christ, but that it is also possible to be justified through Christ without explicit or complete knowledge of who he is.  Inclusivism is contrasted with restritivism.  Restrictivists believe that people without knowledge of Christ are damned by necessity.

Justin Martyr,  103–165:  “We have been taught that Christ is the first-born of God, and we have declared above that He is the Word of whom every race of men were partakers; and those who lived reasonably are Christians, even though they have been thought atheists; as, among the Greeks, Socrates and Heraclitus, and men like them; and among the barbarians, Abraham, and Ananias, and Azarias, and Misael, and Elias, and many others…” (

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Displaced Iraqi Christians who fled with families from Mosul city receives humanitarian aid at Virgin Mary church
in Qaraqosh village near Mosul city, northern Iraq (source, The Telegraph)

After every known Christian is reported to have left Mosul, Islamic State fighters, IS, have now taken over a monastery near the largely Christian town of Qaraqosh, 32 miles southeast of Mosul.

According to Agence France Presse IS expelled its three resident monks, a cleric and a few families living there, ordering them to leave on foot with nothing but their clothes.

Members of the self-proclaimed “Islamic Caliphate” stormed the ancient fourth-century monastery Mar (Saint) Behnam, run by the Syriac Catholic church on Sunday July 20.

“You have no place here anymore, you have to leave immediately,” a member of the Syriac clergy quoted the Sunni militants as telling the monastery’s residents.

According to AFP the monks walked several miles before being picked up by armed Kurdish fighters who drove them to Qaraqosh.

The BBC reported that Syriac Catholic leaders have said priceless manuscripts, about both the history of Iraq and the Church, are now at risk in the monastery.

Militants of IS are reported to have killed Dr. Mahmoud Al-Asali, a professor of Law at the University of Mosul on July 21.

According to Ankawa.com, Al-Asali, a Muslim, was killed for objecting to IS looting and destroying Iraqi Christians’ possessions in Mosul, but WWM could not independently verify this.

The office and residence of the Syrian Catholic Archbishop of Mosul, Yohanna Petros Moshe (in one building) has been burned down.

(Read HERE the rest of this article.)

 

Posted by: DanutM | 23 July 2014

Sentimentul e mutual (sectanți vs. necreștini)

DanutM:

‘Dacă pe (neo)protestanți îi deranjează (doare) folosirea termenului sectant, care poate fi foarte bine rodul ignoranței, al disprețului, al dezinformării, al prejudecăților, ar putea începe să aplice ei înșiși o altă măsură celorlalți și, înainte să-i considere necreștini, in corpore, să încerce să-i cunoască atât ca oameni, cât și ca învățătură. Poate că aici e una dintre cheile schimbării. Poate…’

Originally posted on Cu drezina:

(Sursa)

( Sursa )

Scrie d-l Cornel Dărvășan un articol în care contestă, pe bună dreptate, folosirea termenilor de sectă și sectant cu privire la creștinii după Evanghelie. (Între timp, a apărut și un comunicat oficial din partea Bisericii Creștine după Evanghelie.)

Reflexul „gazetăresc” de a face sectant pe oricine aderă la un cult (neo)protestant denotă, fără-ndoială, o anumită mentalitate și trădează lipsa crasă de profesionalism. Dar cred că e prea mult să ceri dezmințiri oficiale din partea BOR pe acest subiect, atâta vreme cât nu a fost un împuternicit al bisericii sau vreun preot cel care și-a pus semnătura pe respectivul articol.

E bine însă că se reacționează, poate se mai educă așa și cititorii mai puțin informați și se aleg cu o minimă cultură religioasă care n-are cum să strice. Demersurile de acest gen cred că sunt necesare și firești în viața religioasă a unei societăți.

Totuși, acești așa-ziși jurnaliști…

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Pelagius1  Augustine_of_Hippo
Pelagius and Augustine

Pelagius was an amiable chap,
A nice man on the whole.
He thought that we had all the stuff
We needed for our soul.
The sacraments were extra help
That some need more than others;
But most of us can do just fine,
Especially with good mothers.

Augustine had a good mom too,
Though she could scheme and plan.
Might be the reason he took off
To live in another land.
Now they live in America
But still live far away;
‘Gus now lives in Florida;
Monica’s near LA. Read More…

Manu Contac scrie eliptic despre intilnirea sa cu Cristian Ionescu, autorul moral (impreuna cu un colaborator baptist de frunte) al recentelor decapitari de la ITP.
Dramoleta continua, iar beneficiarii, de sorginte deloc nobila, sunt cunoscuti. A mai murit un vis.

NOTA: Intre timp, Manu a retrat postarea cu pricina. QED

Posted by: DanutM | 22 July 2014

EMEU – War Rages in Israel/Palestine

The violent conflict between Israel and Hamas has now claimed the lives of nearly 600 Gazans (estimated 70% civilians) and about 30 Israelis (including two civilians).  Last week, the Israeli military expanded its assault with a ground incursion, which drastically increased casualties on both sides.  Israel’s stated goal for this war is destroying tunnels that Hamas can use for terrorism and stopping rocket fire from Hamas.  Both sides have turned down cease fire proposals.  Israel claims to be warning civilians to leave targeted areas, but in cramped conditions in the Gaza Strip, where would they go?  One interesting twist is that this time around, portrayals in the media aren’t going quite as well as the Israelis would like.

How should the people of God respond to such horrors?
Please keep both people in your hearts as we yearn for war and conflict to give way to peace and understanding.  May the same Jesus who came to break down the barrier between “us” and “them” bring peace and comfort to all who suffer and live in fear.
Posted by: DanutM | 21 July 2014

Richard Rohr – Letting Go of Our Demons

The spiritual journey is a journey into Mystery, requiring us to enter the “cloud of unknowing” where the left brain always fears to tread. Precisely because we’re being led into Mystery, we have to let go of our need to know and our need to keep everything under control. Most of us are shocked to discover how great this need is.

There are three primary things that we have to let go of, in my opinion. First is the compulsion to be successful. Second is the compulsion to be right—even, and especially, to be theologically right. (That’s merely an ego trip, and because of this need, churches have split in half, with both parties prisoners of their own egos.) Finally there is the compulsion to be powerful, to have everything under control.

I’m convinced these are the three demons Jesus faced in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11). Until we each look these three demons in their eyes, we should presume that they are still in charge in every life. The demons have to be called by name, clearly, concretely, and practically, spelling out just how imperious, controlling, and self-righteous we all are. This is the first lesson in the spirituality of subtraction.
Adapted from Simplicity: The Freedom of Letting Go, pp. 42-43

Gateway to Silence:
Let go and let God.


Martin Luther King jr

In 1964, US President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law. This act ended racial segregation in public places, theatres, churches, hotels and hospitals and granted whites and Afro-Americans equal rights to employment. This article is dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the adoption of this act and to the person who served as the beacon for the civil rights movement.

“King’s Men”

Our airplane took off from Tbilisi airport with a swoosh. The sky was clear. Looking out of the window, one could see the sun-scorched landscape below and patches of fluffy clouds above.

Haj Faigh Nabiyev, Namik Gajiyev and I were sitting on the one side of the aisle whilst Bishop Ilia Osepaishvili and Gela Guniava on the other. Our delegation was heading for Iran and Iraq. The airplane belonged to Iranian airlines. Read More…

Posted by: DanutM | 21 July 2014

Martin Marty – Russian Orthodoxy

Kirill & Putin
Patriarch Kirill & President Putin

“Many a bum show has been saved by the flag,” actor and playwright George M. Cohan once mumbled in criticism of the hypocritical use of patriotic symbols in efforts to rescue bad plays. One could also mumble, “Many a bum cause has been saved by the cross, or the crescent, or the star of David, etc.,” in criticism of the hypocritical use of religion in efforts to rescue incidences of hate, rage, and carnage.

Timothy J. Egan in his New York Times column (July 18, 2014) reviewed the previous week’s bum causes and mis-uses of religion by “Faith-Based Fanatics (see References). Among Egan’s examples: Buddhists, the World Cup, Governor Rick Perry “as spokesman for the deity,” Sunnis, Shiites, Boko Haram, but not Ireland for the moment.

Egan was thankful that the U.S. founders explicitly kept God out of the Constitution. “At least that was the intent. In this summer of the violent God, five justices on the Supreme Court seem to feel otherwise.” But the U.S. is not the topic of today’s Sightings.

Instead, we look further East and mention the newcomer to the cast of characters, the one which came too late to catch Egan’s attention: Russian Orthodoxy. Its hypocritical mis-user of the week was President Vladimir Putin, who made a point of visiting a concert at a shrine for St. Sergius of Radonezh. Read More…

The Society for Romanian Studies

Conference of the Society for Romanian Studies (SRS) Bucharest, 17- 19 June 2015

The 2015 SRS conference will be hosted by the Faculty of Political Science, the University of Bucharest.

Anniversaries represent opportunities to reflect on past events, re-assess their impact on the present, and draw lessons for the future. Together with other 20th century historical events – including World War I, World War II, and the communist take-over – the overthrow of the communist regime represented a watershed event for Romania and Moldova, the most recent great transformation it is seen as having led to the end of the communist dictatorship, democratization of the political system, the introduction of market economy, cultural liberalization, the opening of borders, and a re-alignment with the West. At the same time, given Romania’s and Moldova’s persistent problems with political instability, pervasive corruption, slow economic growth, populism, and nationalism, the significance of the 1989/1991 regime change and its outcomes remains a source of contestation.

The aim of this conference is to take a fresh look at the transformative events of a quarter century ago. We wish to examine their significance for the two countries’ post-communist trajectories, past, present, and future both domestically and in the wider European and Eurasian contexts with the help of broad historical, political, literary, and cultural disciplinary and interdisciplinary inquiries.

Keynote Speakers: Dennis Deletant (Georgetown University) and Mihaela Miroiu (SNSPA).We welcome proposals for papers, panels and roundtables from junior and senior scholars working in a variety of disciplines: history, sociology, anthropology and ethnography, political science, philosophy, law and justice studies, literature and linguistics, economics, business, international affairs, religious, gender, film and media studies, art history, music, and education, among others. Read More…

DanutM:

Eugen Matei incearca sa argumenteze in acest scurt articol ca ‘nu există o diferență fundamentală între baptiști și ortodocși cu privire la ce înseamnă să fii mântuit’.
Desi inteleg argumentele lui si sunt de acord cu ele, in principiu, ma indoiesc de faptul ca din ele se poate trage in mosd ferm si categoric aceasta concluzie
Sincer sa fiu, m-as bucura sa fie asa, dar ma indoiesc ca aceasta concluzie este justificata.
In plus, teologia profesata de baptistii romani nu provine din Marturisirea de credinta, ci este influentata in mare masura de diversele teologii baptiste formulate mai ales in Statele Unite, care, atit in versiunea arminiana, cit ssi in cea calvina, pornesc de la o intelegere mai degraba juridica a mintuirii.
Subiectul insa este un ul care merita mai multa atentie decit a primit pina in prezent.
Multumim, Eugen.

Originally posted on Chibzuieli:

Aproape în fiecare carte de teologie ortodoxă teologia este casificată în trei categorii mari: ortodoxă, catolică și reformată,  cea din urmă cu referință la reforma magisterială. Următoarea afirmație de obicei este că teologia reformei înțelege mântuirea în termeni legali. De aici, mai ales la nivel popular, în discuții între baptiști și ortodocși români, se presupune în mod automat că baptiștii înțeleg mântuirea în termeni legali, calviniști, etc., pentru că se trag de la Reformă.

Această înțelegere este eronată și în contradicție atât cu puținele formulări teologice oficiale, cum ar fi Mărturisirea de credință baptistă, cât și cu realitatea istorică a pătrunderii baptismului în România, pe fondul ortodox.

Istoric vorbind, baptiștii nu au primit credința în România cu înaintea-înapoi. Adică, primind o teologie elaborată mai întâi și apoi primind pe Christos. Baptismul a venit în România prin oameni simpli, care au trăit realitatea lucrării lui Dumnezeu în inima oamenilor, au trăit…

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Stars in the Margins: C.S. Lewis Quotes from ‘The Four Loves’ | Musings of a Hardlining Moderate.

Carson quotes from \Lewis.

Posted by: DanutM | 17 July 2014

Rafeef Ziadah – ‘We Teach Life, Sir’

Listen to this, if you have a heart.

Posted by: DanutM | 15 July 2014

Half of World Population Lives in Six Countries

Half the world population map

Christ Black Gifford

What an amazing thought!

What do you think?

Posted by: DanutM | 15 July 2014

Richard Rohr – Jesus as Shape-Shifter

GandalfandBeorn
Shape-shifting in The Hobbit

Jesus is always on the side of the crucified ones. He changes sides in the twinkling of an eye to go wherever the pain is. He is not loyal to one religion, to this or that group, or to the worthy; Jesus is only and always loyal to human suffering. Jesus is what mythology called a “shape-shifter,” and no one seeking power can use him for their private purposes. Those whose hearts are opened to human pain will see Jesus everywhere, and their old dualistic minds will serve them less and less, for the Shape-Shifter ends up shifting our very shape, too.

Adapted from Dancing Standing Still:
Healing the World from a Place of Prayer,
pp. 89, 95-97, 99

Gateway to Silence:
In Christ all things hold together (Colossians 1:17).

Louis Sako, the Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon
Louis Sako, the Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon

Leaders of Catholic churches in Iraq have flown to Europe to report on the Iraqi crisis, to try to find solutions for the country’s rapidly declining number of Christians. Their visit came amid reports that two nuns in Mosul, accompanied by two women and a boy, have been unaccounted for since Jun. 28.

They are believed to have been kidnapped by militants of the radical jihadist Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, also known as Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. More recently, the group has taken to calling itself the Islamic State, or IS.

On July 9, the Patriarch of the Chaldean Catholic Church, Louis Raphael Sako of Baghdad, Archbishop Yohanna Petros Mouche of Mosul, and Bishop Youssif Mirkis of Kirkuk in Kurdish-controlled Iraq, held meetings in Brussels with high-level representatives of EU institutions and NATO. They discussed the situation and prospects for Christians in Iraq since the invasion of Mosul by IS last month and of the Ninevah Plains to the north, where there has been a high concentration of Christians. Many of the Christians had earlier fled Baghdad and other southern cities for the relative safety of the north. The Brussels meetings were organized by Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need. Read More…

Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin
Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin is tipped to be the CofE’s first woman bishop

‘Women will be bishops in the Church of England after a historic vote in the General Synod, ending 40 years of wrangling.

An overwhelming 81 per cent of Synod members backed the change, during the sitting in York, and 75 per cent of the laity supported the move.’

(Read the whole article in The Telegraph.)

* * *

See also on BBC News the article ‘What are the issues behind women bishops vote?

This is what Jesus did: he hung on the cross and did not return the negative energy directed at him. He held it inside and made it into something much better. That is how he “took away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). He refused to pass it on! He absorbs evil until it becomes resurrection! That’s how Jesus takes away the sin of the world. And this is exactly what contemplative practice helps us to do. Meditation is refusing to project our anxieties elsewhere, and learning to hold and face them within ourselves and within God.

Adapted from Dancing Standing Still:
Healing the World from a Place of Prayer,
pp. 66-70, 77-80

Gateway to Silence:
In Christ all things hold together (Colossians 1:17).

David Frost
Prof David Frost, IOCS in Cambridge, UK

The Psalms of David - Now as an AUDIO BOOK

A reading by the Principal of the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies, Professor David Frost, of the complete Book of Psalms (Cambridge Liturgical Psalter version) is now available as an audio book from AUDIBLE, price £14.49, but only £3.99 if you take out membership of Audible. The recording is also available from iTunes and Amazon.

Buying the Cambridge Liturgical Psalter Audio Book is another way you can help IOCS, because for every person who takes out membership and first orders the recording at reduced price, the publisher gets a bounty of $50! Purchase here 

Posted by: DanutM | 13 July 2014

Michael S Horton – Faith and Mental Illness

Modern Reformation – Articles.

Michael Horton provides in this article a reformed perspective on mental illness.

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