Saturday, December 21, 2019

‘John Henry Newman’ Review: A Heart That Speaks to Hearts

From The Wall Street Journal-

John Henry Newman was and is an exceptional figure. This October he was declared a saint by the Catholic Church, the first English saint created in half a century. For much of Newman’s life, he struggled with unpopularity, misunderstanding and vilification from his various opponents. He was the most distinguished and the most original English theologian since the Middle Ages, but he was disliked and distrusted by many in the Catholic Church, as well as by the English Protestants and unbelievers whom he had horrified by his defection, in 1845, from the Church of England. Yet when he died, aged 89 in 1890, in an England still generally anti-Catholic, he had become, as Eamon Duffy says in this splendid book, an unlikely “national treasure” to whom Tennyson and Matthew Arnold —by no means Catholics—had written polite but puzzled tributes.

Newman wrote a great deal. He published half a dozen books, a number of essays that are central to the understanding of Catholic thought, three good hymns (including “Lead, Kindly Light”), a bad long poem (“The Dream of Gerontius,” later transformed by Edward Elgar’s music) and 32 volumes of letters and diaries. Anyone daunted by more weighty biographies, the best being Ian Ker’s (1988), should read Eamon Duffy’s short, fresh account. The Cambridge scholar of religion’s calm judgment expertly illuminates every aspect of Newman’s life, work and—until he was very old—unceasing mental and spiritual attention.

More here-

Federal judge grants majority of Diocese of South Carolina’s motion to enforce injunction

From ENS-

U.S. District Court Judge Richard M. Gergel issued an order and opinion on Dec. 18, granting in part the motion to enforce the injunction filed by The Diocese of South Carolina, also known as The Episcopal Church in South Carolina, on Nov. 11. In the order, the judge notes: “The Defendants [the disassociated diocese] here clearly violated the terms of the Court’s Order and Injunction.” Furthermore, Gergel’s order denied the motion to stay the injunction filed by the disassociated diocese.

In the petition on Nov. 11, the Diocese of South Carolina requested enforcement of the court’s order and opinion and permanent injunction issued on Sept. 19. The petition cited numerous examples that prove continued violations of the injunction by the disassociated diocese as it “hold(s) itself out to be the Historic Diocese in many respects.”

In yesterday’s ruling, Gergel ruled that “the Court finds that Defendants violated the Court’s Order and Injunction by continuing to use the terms ‘Founded in 1785,’ ‘14th Bishop,’ ‘XIV Bishop,’ and ‘229th Diocesan Convention.’” He further noted that the defendant’s use of these terms and phrases violate the order and injunction by “continuing to claim goodwill as a successor to the Historic Diocese when only TECSC [The Episcopal Church in South Carolina] has that right.” He, therefore, issued a permanent injunction prohibiting the disassociated diocese from using any and all of these terms.

More here-

The New Testament Doesn’t Say What Most People Think It Does About Heaven

N.T. Wright in Time-

One of the central stories of the Bible, many people believe, is that there is a heaven and an earth and that human souls have been exiled from heaven and are serving out time here on earth until they can return. Indeed, for most modern Christians, the idea of “going to heaven when you die” is not simply one belief among others, but the one that seems to give a point to it all.

But the people who believed in that kind of “heaven” when the New Testament was written were not the early Christians. They were the “Middle Platonists” — people like Plutarch (a younger contemporary of St Paul who was a philosopher, biographer, essayist and pagan priest in Delphi). To understand what the first followers of Jesus believed about what happens after death, we need to read the New Testament in its own world — the world of Jewish hope, of Roman imperialism and of Greek thought.

More here-

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Over 2,000 Children, Women Benefit Free Medical Care, Others in Abijo Community

From Nigeria-

According to the Head of women, Anglican church of Transformation Abijo, Barrister Nengi-Kiri Wakama aka Mama yard, noted that "we are having an increase in term of attendance, and since we started this is the outreach with the largest turn out.

"The whole church is involved, both parents, teenagers and youth department. In spite of the Bible says that we should preach the gospel but ww don't preach the gospel just by words, we have to also show what we represent, we meet the spiritual needs and physical needs of the people and that is what we are here to do on Earth, we represent the body of Christ".

Venerable Kiki Wakama, added that the legal clinic was created three years ago, because we found out there are lots of oppression in our system. After the first two years of the program we realized that some individuals need not just a counseling and physical needs, we realized that people were going through some emotional need that could be taking care of physically like the legal unit to take care of landlord and tenant issues and some family issues. So their legal issues are taken care of appropriately."

More here-

Facebook Twitter Flipboard Email Copy Real Estate How ‘Night Before Christmas’ creator also spawned NYC’s Chelsea

From New York-

To keep the city from riding roughshod over his farm, he took the central orchard and donated it the Episcopal Church to build the General Theological Seminary, established in 1817. But that still left much of Moore’s land ripe for development. As the 1820s progressed and New Yorkers began moving uptown, Moore began to have second thoughts about the evils of real estate. Instead of visions of sugar plums, he saw dollar signs.

Around this same time, Moore wrote “A Visit from Saint Nicholas.” He was probably inspired by the traditions (and stout figure) of a groundskeeper who worked on the Chelsea farm and was a descendant of an old Dutch family. The poem kept alive the Dutch tradition of Saint Nicholas as the bringer of presents. Moore even gave the reindeer Dutch names: Donder and Blixem (better known as Donner and Blitzen) mean thunder and lightning. It was published anonymously in the Troy Sentinel in December 1823. For years, historians have questioned whether Moore is the poem’s true author, though he did publish a version of it under his own name in 1837.

More here-

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Bishop Stephen Cottrell to become the next Archbishop of York

From England-

The Right Reverend Stephen Cottrell, Bishop of Chelmsford, has been nominated by Her Majesty the Queen as the new Archbishop of York in succession to the Most Reverend and Right Honourable Dr John Sentamu. 

Bishop Stephen said:
I am humbled and excited at the prospect of becoming the 98th Archbishop of York. 
“I will receive the baton from Archbishop Sentamu. These aren’t just big shoes to fill, but a big heart and a big vision. 
“However I am not daunted. Archbishop Sentamu and I have worked together in mission on many occasions and I hope to build on the work he has pioneered.

“Working alongside the Archbishop of Canterbury, I hope to help the church be more joyful and more effective in sharing the gospel and bringing hope and unity to our nation.

“Although I was born and grew up in Essex, I lived and served in Huddersfield for nine years. I know and love the north of England. Two of our children were born there.

More here-

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry’s Christmas message 2019

From ENS- (with video)

In the first chapter of John’s Gospel, sometimes referred to as the prologue to the Gospel, sometimes spoken of as the whole Gospel in miniature the Gospel writer says this. As he reflects on the coming of God into the world in the person of Jesus. As he reflects on Christmas. He says, the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness cannot overcome it.

I don’t think it’s an accident that long ago, followers of Jesus began to commemorate his coming into the world when the world seemed to be at its darkest.

It’s probably not an accident that we observe Christmas soon after December 21, the winter solstice. The winter solstice being in the Northern Hemisphere the darkest time of the year.

More here-

Anglican Bishop and Queen’s Chaplain Converts to Catholicism

From Church Militant-

An internationally renowned Anglican bishop and former chaplain to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is leaving the Anglican Church to become a Catholic. 

Bishop Gavin Ashenden will be received into full communion by Shrewsbury's Bp. Mark Davies on the fourth Sunday of Advent at Shrewsbury Cathedral, England.

The outspoken prelate became a global media celebrity after he objected to the reading of the Koran at St. Mary's Episcopal Cathedral in Glasgow, Scotland.

The Koranic chapter on Mary, read from the lectern at the service of Holy Communion, on the Feast of the Epiphany 2017, explicitly denied the divinity of Jesus. 

Under pressure from Buckingham Palace, Dr. Ashenden resigned his royal chaplaincy in order to be free to challenge the rising tide of apostasy in the Church of England. 

More here-

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Monday, December 16, 2019

With dust gone, cathedral‘s tapestries take spotlight

From New York-

Think your home furnishings are a dust magnet? New York‘s Cathedral of St. John the Divine just spent 16 years cleaning and conserving its rare, supersize wall hangings.

Now the historic house of worship is inviting the public to enjoy the fruits of its labor — “The Barberini Tapestries, Scenes from the Life of Christ,” which once graced the Vatican and European palaces. They were designed by baroque master Giovanni Francesco Romanelli; created by weavers for Francesco Barberini, the nephew of Pope Urban VIII, from 1644 to 1656; and donated to the cathedral in 1891, a year before its cornerstone was laid.

Centuries ago, tapestries were appreciated not only for their beauty but also for being a warm buffer against chilly palace walls.

These days, they‘re kept well-groomed by experts at the Gothic cathedral‘s textile conservation laboratory — a labor-intensive process using dental probes, tweezers and a HEPA vacuum with microsuction attachments.

More here-