Musings of an Anglican/Episcopal Priest

Month: May 2005

Bush: U.S. had hand in European divisions

President Bush said Saturday the Soviet domination of central and eastern Europe after World War II will be remembered as “one of the greatest wrongs of history” and acknowledged that the United States played a significant role in the division of the continent.

Bush said the agreement in 1945 at Yalta among President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Soviet leader Josef Stalin and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill “followed in the unjust tradition of Munich and the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact.” The decisions at Yalta led to the division of eastern Europe and creation of the Soviet bloc.

“Once again, when powerful governments negotiated, the freedom of small nations was somehow expendable,” the president said, opening a four-nation trip to mark the 60th anniversary of Nazi Germany’s defeat. “Yet this attempt to sacrifice freedom for the sake of stability left a continent divided and unstable.”

“We will not repeat the mistakes of other generations – appeasing or excusing tyranny, and sacrificing freedom in the vain pursuit of stability.”


Members say church ousts Kerry supporters

I think this is going to far. Preach on issues, because the are important, but don’t try to dictate who someone can and can’t vote for while threatening their membership in the church… that’s simply bizzare.
Members say church ousts Kerry supporters

By Andre A. Rodriguez
May 7, 2005 6:00 am

WAYNESVILLE — Nine members of a local church had their membership revoked and 40 others left in protest after tension over political views recently came to a head, church members say.

About 20 members of the 400-member East Waynesville Baptist Church voted the nine members out at a recent deacon meeting, which turned into an impromptu business meeting, according to congregants.

Chan Chandler, pastor of East Waynesville Baptist, had been exhorting his congregation since October to support his political views or leave, said Selma Morris, a 30-year member of the church.

“He preached a sermon on abortion and homosexuality, then said if anyone there was planning on voting for John Kerry, they should leave,” she said. “That’s the first time I’ve ever heard something like that. Ministers are supposed to bring people in.”

Repeated phone calls to Chandler went unanswered Friday, and he was not available at the church or his home to comment. Those members supposedly voted out also could not be contacted Friday.

Question of legality

Dr. George Bullard, associate executive director-treasurer for Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, said if a church’s bylaws allow for the pastor to establish who and who cannot be members of the church, the pastor has every right to disallow memberships.

“Membership is a local church issue,” he said. “It is not something the state convention would enter into.”

Morris said, according to the church’s bylaws, business meetings must be announced from the pulpit at least two weeks before the meeting, and 20 members must be present for a quorum.

“He had a quorum, but this was supposed to be a deacon meeting, not a business meeting,” she said. “They’re legally not terminated.”

Morris said the members have a lawyer looking into the situation.

Doris Wilson, one of Chandler’s neighbors and a member of First Baptist Church in Waynesville said, “I hate to see the church suffer like that. God doesn’t care whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat. It just hurts to see that going on.”

Tax status

It’s not clear whether the church’s tax-exempt status could be jeopardized.

The Internal Revenue Service exempts certain organizations from taxation including those organized and operated for religious purposes, provided that they do not engage in certain activities including involvement in “any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office.”

Valerie Thornton, a spokeswoman for the Internal Revenue Service, said she could not comment on the East Waynesville situation, but said “in general if a church engages in partisan politics, it could put their tax-exempt status in jeopardy.”

Pastor Robert Prince III of First Baptist Church of Waynesville said he was appalled to hear about the claims but noticed a lot of Southern Baptist ministers endorsing President Bush in November’s election.

“One rule has been to speak to issues but not to endorse particular candidates,” he said. “It’s a disturbing development that Baptist pastors are crossing this line and are endorsing specific candidates.”


Morris said she and other church members have received many calls from people saying they are praying for the church and its members.

She said she was saddened by what was going on, adding that it was like having a death in the family.

“These people are your family, even the ones who voted,” she said.

Prince said it would be difficult for the church to move on from the situation.

“The atmosphere will be very divisive,” he said.

Contact Rodriguez at 232-5864 or

The New Pantagruel: Traditionalist Conservatism

the New Pantagruel: Hymns in the Whorehouse: “But as we have seen rather pointedly by placing Kirk in contrast to the pre-war libertarian conservatives, there are several ways in which Kirk was actually quite close to the values and aspirations of common Americans untutored in political theory. Today’s traditionalist conservatives continue to be closer to average Americans on religious and moral matters — and on what we might call the “national questionâ€? — than are either libertarians or neoconservatives. Traditionalists can be understood as “un-Americanâ€? only when America is understood definitively as the abstract embodiment of liberal theory. A younger Samuel Huntington thought in such terms. Behold, with his latest book, Who Are We?, it would appear that Huntington has matured — into a traditionalist.”

Bonhoeffer: Life Together

“Strong and weak, wise and foolish, gifted or ungifted, pious or impious, the diverse individuals in the community, are no longer incentives for talking and judging and condemning, and thus excuses for self-justification. They are rather cause for rejoicing in one another and serving one another. Each member of the community is given his particular place in which he can most successfully assert himself, but the place where he can best perform his service.”

Life Together 93-94)

The Ninth Station

–Benedict XVI’s (then Cardinal Ratzinger’s) reflections on the Way of the Cross
Zenit News Agency – The World Seen From Rome: “NINTH STATION
Jesus falls for the third time

V/. Adoramus te, Christe, et benedicimus tibi.
R/. Quia per sanctam crucem tuam redemisti mundum.

From the Book of Lamentations 3:27-32

It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth. Let him sit alone in silence when he has laid it on him; let him put his mouth in the dust — there may yet be hope; let him give his cheek to the smiter, and be filled with insults. For the Lord will not cast off for ever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion, according to the abundance of his steadfast love.


What can the third fall of Jesus under the Cross say to us? We have considered the fall of man in general, and the falling of many Christians away from Christ and into a godless secularism. Should we not also think of how much Christ suffers in his own Church? How often is the holy sacrament of his Presence abused, how often must he enter empty and evil hearts! How often do we celebrate only ourselves, without even realizing that he is there! How often is his Word twisted and misused! What little faith is present behind so many theories, so many empty words! How much filth there is in the Church, and even among those who, in the priesthood, ought to belong entirely to him! How much pride, how much self-complacency! What little respect we pay to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, where he waits for us, ready to raise us up whenever we fall! All this is present in his Passion. His betrayal by his disciples, their unworthy reception of his Body and Blood, is certainly the greatest suffering endured by the Redeemer; it pierces his heart. We can only call to him from the depths of our hearts: Kyrie eleison — Lord, save us (cf. Matthew 8: 25).


Lord, your Church often seems like a boat about to sink, a boat taking in water on every side. In your field we see more weeds than wheat. The soiled garments and face of your Church throw us into confusion. Yet it is we ourselves who have soiled them! It is we who betray you time and time again, after all our lofty words and grand gestures. Have mercy on your Church; within her too, Adam continues to fall. When we fall, we drag you down to earth, and Satan laughs, for he hopes that you will not be able to rise from that fall; he hopes that being dragged down in the fall of your Church, you will remain prostrate and overpowered. But you will rise again. You stood up, you arose and you can also raise us up. Save and sanctify your Church. Save and sanctify us all. ”

WOW… that’s all I can say… wow…

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