FrJody.com

Musings of an Anglican/Episcopal Priest

Month: September 2013

Inaugural Hendersonvil… – pingg.com

Consider signing up to join the St. Joseph of Arimathea table at the inaugural fundraising banquet for Young Life Hendersonville. This is a wonderful ministry to High School students, and we’re excited to have it starting in our area. Contact Fr. Jody for more details.

Dear members and friends…

Read it all: Inaugural Hendersonvil… – pingg.com

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Study: Damage from mountaintop removal mining is ‘staggering’ compared to the energy benefits « Coa

“While several thousand square kilometers of land area have been subject to surface mining in the Central Appalachians, no reliable estimate exists for how much coal is produced per unit landscape disturbance. We provide this estimate using regional satellite-derived mine delineations and historical county-level coal production data for the period 1985-2005, and further relate the aerial extent of mining disturbance to stream impairment and loss of ecosystem carbon sequestration potential. To meet current US coal demands, an area the size of Washington DC would need to be mined every 81 days. A one-year supply of coal would result in ~2,300 km of stream impairment and a loss of ecosystem carbon sequestration capacity comparable to the global warming potential of >33,000 US homes. For the first time, the environmental impacts of surface coal mining can be directly scaled with coal production rates.”

There’s a new study out today that presents the first real effort to compare the environmental damage from mountaintop removal mining to the energy benefits from the coal that’s produced. Here’s…

Read it all: Study: Damage from mountaintop removal mining is ‘staggering’ compared to the energy benefits « Coa

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Assault on Christian Town in Syria Adds to Fears Over Rebels

“Their incursion into the town, led by extremist Islamists, reinforces the worst fears of Syrian Christians and could bolster President Bashar al-Assad’s claims that he is the Christians’ protector. It may also complicate President Obama’s task as he struggles to convince Americans that a military strike against Mr. Assad will not strengthen Islamic extremists.

Some of the rebels, apparently aware of their public relations problem, said in interviews that they meant Christians no harm. They filmed themselves talking politely with nuns, instructing fighters not to harm civilians or churches and touring a monastery that appeared mostly intact. They said they had withdrawn from most of the town, posted videos of shelling there by Mr. Assad’s forces and argued that the government had given the fight a sectarian cast by sending Christian militiamen from Damascus to join in.

But the damage was already done. Most of the town’s residents have fled, and Maaloula, one of the last places where Aramaic, the language of Jesus, is still spoken by Christians and some Muslims, has become a one-word argument against Western support for the rebels — at the worst possible time for Mr. Obama and the opponents of Mr. Assad.”

Maaloula has long symbolized Syria’s history of diversity and coexistence, but most of its residents have fled after fighting between rebels and government forces.

Read it all: Assault on Christian Town in Syria Adds to Fears Over Rebels

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This is why there is no enthusiasm for intervening in Syria

Very insightful.

“The ban on chemical weapons, in other words, is proof that humanity can make war a little more decent. Consequently, its continued success is vital to all future efforts to make war a little more decent. There is a kind of beauty in that, but much less so when you recall the 100,000 Syrians killed by nonchemical weapons.

The U.S. is now debating a military campaign that marries the highest, most abstract idealism to the harshest, most unsettling pragmatism: Obama wants to punish Assad for violating the abstract norms of war even as he leaves Assad capable of continuing his massacre by more conventional means.

This is why there is no enthusiasm for intervening in Syria: Making the decision to punish Assad for using chemical weapons means explicitly making the decision not to stop him when he slaughters with conventional weapons. The brutality of what we are willing to accept tarnishes the better world we seek to preserve.”

The brutality of what we are willing to accept tarnishes the better world we seek to preserve.

Read it all: This is why there is no enthusiasm for intervening in Syria

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Mary Eberstadt, “How the West Really Lost God” (Templeton Press, 2013)

Very interesting… And more plausible than the alternatives.

Mary EberstadtView on AmazonThere are a lot of theories that attempt to explain how Westerns came to leave their churches in great numbers. Some focus on ideas, particularly the idea that believing in God made no sense because the evidence

Read it all: Mary Eberstadt, “How the West Really Lost God” (Templeton Press, 2013)

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Let’s Do Our Homework

My review of “Perspectives in Ecclesiology and Ethnography” from the September 15th issue of The Living Church Magazine (you all should subscribe by the way, which you can do here: http://www.livingchurch.org/)

“Ward articulates a way for observers to take in the life of the community while letting go of the myth of the disinterested observer.”

Read it all: Let’s Do Our Homework

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Joint Nominating Committee for the Election of a Presiding Bishop Survey

Although some have voiced frustration at the design or the questions asked in this survey, I encourage all Episcopalians to take it, to help the nominating committee to understand the desires of the people of the church.

Dear Friends of the Episcopal Church, The General Convention of the Episcopal Church will elect a new Presiding Bishop at our meeting, June 25-July 3, 2015. We are beginning our search and nominating process.

Read it all: Joint Nominating Committee for the Election of a Presiding Bishop Survey

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