Thursday, March 31, 2011

Print this and save trees

"Chuck [Leavell]'s email tagline reads: "Notice: It's OK to print this email. Paper is a biodegradable, renewable, sustainable product made from trees. Growing and harvesting trees provides jobs for millions of Americans. Working forests are good for the environment and provide clean air and water, wildlife habitat and carbon storage. Thanks to improved forest management, we have more trees in America today than we had 100 years ago." "

WSJ March 31, 2011, "Save a Forest: Print Your Emails" Chuck Leavell

God has appointed mankind to shepherd his creation. Don't turn it over to those who disrespect him and the accomplishments of his children.

Friday, March 18, 2011

St. Cyril of Jerusalem, c.315-386

March 18 is the memorial for St. Cyril, "Famous as a teacher and preacher, he has left a series of catechetical instructions that constitute a priceless heirloom from Christian antiquity. Of the twenty-four extant discourses, nineteen were directed to catechumens during Lent as a preparation for baptism, while five so-called mystagogical instructions were given during Easter time to make the mysteries of Christianity better known to those already baptized."

Catholic Culture : Liturgical Year

His writings show the great care the early church took in the instruction and training of converts before admitting them to baptism.

Additional sources with excerpts from his instructions.

A prayer for Christians on strike

Today I came across a published prayer for Christians on strike in the 1957 My Prayer Book by Concordia Publishing House (Lutheran) and I thought about all the hard feelings among Christians demonstrating at the state houses and watching on TV. In quoting I've somewhat modernized the pronouns thee and thou. Somehow, I don't think workers in King James era were going on strike.
    "Owing to disagreements between my labor union and my employer, I am now on strike and out of work. I know you love all, and it is your will that I love all men as brothers. Therefore help me, my fellow workers, and my employer to overcome all selfishness and pride and to seek a fair solution of our difficulties. . .

    Protect the property of strikers and employers during the conferences between them. Give our employer a sympathetic understanding of the problems and needs of his workers. Likewise give me and the other workers a proper insight into the problems and resources of our employer, that we may not ask more than is reasonable. Prevent bitterness and strife, and where ungodly strife is present, grant your healing and peace. Guide the negotiations toward an early agreement whereby both employer and worker may profit. May fairness and justice prevail for all concerned. . .

    Give your blessing to honest labor everywhere that the needs of mankind may be supplied and that your kingdom may flourish; through Jesus Christ. Amen."

In 1957 there were no unions representing government employees--it was practically unthinkable. Wisconsin, the "progressive" state, was the first to allow state employees to bargain with their employers. In 1957, both public and private workers knew the basics of negotiating and that if you negotiate with yourself, you, not your neighbor [employer], always are the winner because of self-interest. It's like going into a ballgame where the final score is already determined. Home team wins every time. Public sector unions are negotiating with "self," i.e., the workers' union representatives are negotiating with the workers' elected representatives, and often with their own political party representatives [Democrats]. Therefore, this 1957 prayer sounds archaic--from a long distant past--and it is.

There is no "justice to prevail" at the state houses of Ohio or Wisconsin or New Jersey where one group of workers doesn't pay for their benefits at the expense of another group of workers who pay the salaries of the other group. A public sector worker employed for 35 years will pull out thousands of dollars more a year in her retirement check than a private sector worker who worked 50 years to receive Social Security. Both SS and STRS/PERS are government plans. But the school teacher who retires at 55 may get $80,000 a year (or more), and the real estate broker or small businessman who can't retire until 66 will get $28,400. And the businessman, if self-employed has contributed more! Both have elected representatives, but one has double the representation.

[Similar piece at Collecting my thoughts]

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

The beginning of Lent

Upper Arlington Lutheran Church (UALC) is a multi-campus Lutheran Congregation (NALC) located in Upper Arlington, Hilliard, and Columbus, Ohio. At three locations we have nine services and 4 worship styles on Sunday, two traditional (at Lytham only), celebration/contemporary (two at Mill Run and one Lytham), X-alt (two at Mill Run and one Lytham), and blended (at Hilltop).

There are a number of opportunities for Ash Wednesday, the traditional starting date for Lent, when Christians observe 40 days before Easter (not counting Sundays) of prayer, service, and repentence.

Ash Wednesday, March 9
Services at Lytham Road, 2300 Lytham Rd., Upper Arlington, OH 43220
6:30 am, Spoken service with communion
12:00 pm, Traditional service with communion, light lunch following
6:00 pm, Family service, ashes for children
7:30 pm, Traditional service with communion

Services at Mill Run, 3500 Mill Run Dr., Hilliard, OH 43026
6:30 pm, Family service, ashes for children, with communion
7:30 pm, Contemporary service with communion

Service at Hilltop, 12 S. Terrace Ave., Columbus, OH 43204
7:00 pm, Worship with communion

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Paterson pastor pleads not guilty to stabbing another preacher |

It's interesting what the website Religion News Blog considers "religious news." Two pastors, a married man and a single woman, are having a lovers' quarrel which results in a stabbing. Yes, it's a sin, but the fact they are both pastors doesn't make it religious news. If they were both engineers, would it be engineering news?

Religion News Blog pointed to this unfortunate event Paterson pastor pleads not guilty to stabbing another preacher |