Friday, September 28, 2007

Common Cause Partnership Statement

The bishops of the Common Cause Partnership have concluded their conference in Pittsburgh and have issued a wonderful statement outlining the direction ahead for Biblical, orthodox Anglicanism in North America.

Discussion thread at Stand Firm.

Thanks be to God for the faithful leadership of the assembled bishops! Please continue, as I am, to pray for all of Christ's Church and for all of our faithful bishops, priests, and deacons. The way forward will be frought with difficulties and strife. The forces of revisionism will assuredly stop at nothing in attempt to keep the faithful under their secular non-Gospel of so-called "social justice".

In the words of Martin Luther, "A Mighty Fortress is our God":

Did we in our strength confide,
Our striving would be losing;
Were not the right Man on our side,
The Man of God's own choosing:
Dost ask who that may be?
Christ Jesus, it is He;
Lord Sabbaoth, His Name,
From age to age the same,
And He must win the battle.

Amen, and AMEN!

TFH 9/27-28: Captain Robert E. Roeder, U.S. Army

From Medal of Honor Citations:


Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, Company G, 350th Infantry, 88th Infantry Division. Place and date: Mt. Battaglia, Italy, 27-28 September 1944. Entered service at: Summit Station, Pa. Birth: Summit Station, Pa. G.O. No.: 31, 17 April 1945. Citation: for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty. Capt. Roeder commanded his company in defense of the strategic Mount Battaglia. Shortly after the company had occupied the hill, the Germans launched the first of a series of determined counterattacks to regain this dominating height. Completely exposed to ceaseless enemy artillery and small-arms fire, Capt. Roeder constantly circulated among his men, encouraging them and directing their defense against the persistent enemy. During the sixth counterattack, the enemy, by using flamethrowers and taking advantage of the fog, succeeded in overrunning the position Capt. Roeder led his men in a fierce battle at close quarters, to repulse the attack with heavy losses to the Germans. The following morning, while the company was engaged in repulsing an enemy counterattack in force, Capt. Roeder was seriously wounded and rendered unconscious by shell fragments. He was carried to the company command post, where he regained consciousness. Refusing medical treatment, he insisted on rejoining his men although in a weakened condition, Capt. Roeder dragged himself to the door of the command post and, picking up a rifle, braced himself in a sitting position. He began firing his weapon, shouted words of encouragement, and issued orders to his men. He personally killed 2 Germans before he himself was killed instantly by an exploding shell. Through Capt. Roeder's able and intrepid leadership his men held Mount Battaglia against the aggressive and fanatical enemy attempts to retake this important and strategic height. His valorous performance is exemplary of the fighting spirit of the U.S. Army.

Captain Roeder, I honor your supreme sacrifice in the defense of freedom. Thank you for your service and your courage in the face of our enemies. September 27-28, 1944 was your finest hour!

If you are stranded, stay with your car!

I'm a big CSI fan, and the season premiere was last night. The story line picked up with Sara Sidle pinned where we saw her at the end of the last season, underneath a wrecked car by the hands of the "Miniature Killer".

Well, the character managed to free herself, and then proceeded to trek off into the desert, injured, with no supplies or knowledge of her whereabouts. Yes, it was raining heavilly. Yes, she almost drowned before freeing herself. Yes, she was in dire straits. However, she should have stayed close to the vehicle. As the storyline had it, Sara's colleagues with the LVPD found the car in fairly short order. Meanwhile, Sara is off miles away dying from hyperthermia and dehydration in a 110-degree Nevada desert. Fortunately, they found her before death, so perhaps Jorja Fox's contract was renewed. Fictional story, yes. Bad example of basic survival skills, yes.

I blogged last December about the tragic story of the Kim family. Had they all stayed with their car, they would most likely all be alive today. Your chances of survival increase dramatically if you can stay with or close to your vehicle.

If you are stranded in a vehicle, stay with it if you are in no immediate danger. If you are in immediate danger, move to safety as close by as possible, then return to your vehicle as soon as conditions improve. Cars and trucks in the wild are easier to find; people aren't. Never go seeking help unless you can see it nearby (within 100 meters distance is a good rule of thumb).

Headline should be "Criminal gets what he deserves"

This article on CNN's website entitled "Mistake costs dishwasher $59,000" caught my attention because I figured, "What, did the guy break a real expensive dish or a whole lot of dishes?" Turns out that the "victim" here is an illegal immigrant who tried to get out of the country with $59,000 in violation of U.S. laws!

CNN's reporting here disgusts me on several levels. Quotes from the article in italics:

For 11 years, Pedro Zapeta, an illegal immigrant from Guatemala, lived his version of the American dream in Stuart, Florida: washing dishes and living frugally to bring money back to his home country.

Note "lived his version of the American dream". What is that "version"? Well:

Zapeta, who speaks no English...

Zapeta admits he never paid taxes.

Zapeta said his goal in coming to the United States was to make enough money to buy land in his mountain village and build a home for his mother and sisters.

Let's get this straight: the American Dream is NOT:
  1. Entering the country in violation of United States Law.
  2. Isolating one's self by not learning English and assimilating into American society and culture.
  3. Violating the laws of this country by working illegally and not paying taxes on wages earned.
  4. Sucking what you think you can out of the United States and running back to the third world.
What should have happened here IS:
  1. Mr. Zapeta should have applied for an immigrant visa and entered the country legally
  2. Mr. Zapeta should have enrolled in ESL classes
  3. Mr. Zapeta should have been working legally and paying his taxes
  4. Mr. Zapeta should have been using his savings in order to bring his family to the United States so they can share in the American Dream and build a better life here
Now, Mr. Zapeta is going to be sent back to Guatemala without his illegally obtained savings of $59,000.

"They are treating me like a criminal when all I am is a working man," he said.

No, Mr. Zapeta, you are being treated like a criminal because you are one! You entered the country illegally. You worked illegally. You ignored U.S. laws with regards to taxation (yes, even illegally obtained wages are subject to taxation). You ignored or were ignorant of U.S. laws with regards to transporting cash. Since you were getting on an airplane, you obviously have also illegally obtained some form of photo ID.

On a side note, I'd love to know if the restaurant proprietors who employed Mr. Zapeta have been charged yet. They are just as culpable; more so, even.

I am frankly sick and tired of bleeding hearts for criminals who have both entered this country illegally and refused to truly be "immigrants" - e.g. individuals determined to become Americans.

My solution:
  1. Close the borders with fences, walls, and even land mines if necessary.
  2. Deport all illegal immigrants; deported illegals may never return to the United States, even with a tourist visa. Violations of U.S. Law must NEVER be rewarded.
  3. Promote legal immigration; increase the amount of available immigrant visas.
  4. Any immigrant visa holder who has not completed basic ESL by the end of their first 18 months in the United States should have their visa cancelled and be deported.
  5. Prosecute vigorously all employers who break employment laws.
  6. Use economic sanctions - possibly even complete trade embargos - against countries that do not do their part to control outbound illegal immigrants.
Enough, as they say, is enough! This is the country that put 12 men on the moon; we should be able to get rid of illegal immigrants and the illegal immigration problem.

This country was built on immigrants who came legally, worked hard, obeyed our laws, and became Americans. Period.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The HOB Statement

Text of the statement available at Stand Firm.

My reaction:

1) By and large the liberals like it, which can't be good.

2) It does nothing to shelter or remove faithful dioceses, parishes, clergy, and laity from under the authority of revisionists. Their extended DEPO isn't good enough.

3) There is no repentance involved.

I'm going to write more extensively on the topic shortly, but in the end, the revisionists fail to admit (although I am sure they know the facts full well) publicly that the divide is not over homosexuality, but over Biblical truth. They deny it, and we will never surrender the one, true faith in Christ Jesus.

Let's see what comes out of the Common Cause meeting. Keep checking Stand Firm, TitusOneNine, and Anglican TV. And of course, continue to pray for the Church!

Father, please pour out your Holy Spirit upon the Bishops meeting in Pittsburgh. Strengthen their resolve. Show them the path You intend for us. I pray in Jesus' name, amen.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

HOB: Reactions to the Weekend, Monday, Looking Ahead

Well, the Episcopal HOB certainly looks like it is going to discard any possibility of complying with the Primates' requests. The eventual statement looks like it will fall somewhere in between "we've already complied" and "there's nothing we can do, because only General Convention can speak for the church."

Read up on the details at Stand Firm or TitusOneNine (Site links only, too many individual articles to read!)

The only real interesting item that came out of yesterday's HOB presser is that Jon Bruno, Bishop of Los Angeles, seems to have claimed that rites for same-sex blessings don't happen in his diocese, at least not without his permission. Funny, since Stand Firm has documented here, here, here, and here the public acknowledgement of such services. Furthermore, Baby Blue has documented that not only did one of these happen in his diocese, Bishop Bruno presided at it!

Bishop Bruno probably was taken aback by the source of the question, since it came from The New York Times. Memo to liberals: the liberal press is only your friend so long as you are as liberal as they are.

From the left (view at your own risk):

Elizabeth Kaeton on why it's ok for liberals not to follow any rules in advance of their agenda since we know it's right and the rest of the world hasn't caught up yet.

Looking forward though, today begins the Common Cause Partnership meeting of Bishops here in Pittsburgh! The Rt. Rev. Robert Duncan, Bishop of Pittsburgh, will be addresing the conference as part of the opening Eucharistic celebration tonight. Wish I could attend in person, but Kevin Kallsen at Anglican TV says he'll be streaming the event live.

Addition: Make sure and watch the Anglican TV interview with +Duncan.

Friday, September 21, 2007

TFH 9/21: Pvt. Reginald Roy Inwood, 10th Battalion/Royal South Australian Regiment

Today's installment of "Their Finest Hour" comes from the ranks of Victoria Cross holders, the British Empire's and now British Commonwealth's equivalent of our Medal of Honor. Reginald Roy Inwood received his VC for gallantry in battle on September 21, 1917 during the First World War. The text of Private Inwood's Victoria Cross citation follows:

For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty during the advance to the third objective. He moved forward through our barrage alone to an enemy strong post and captured it, together with nine prisoners, killing several of the enemy. During the evening he volunteered for a special all-night patrol, which went out 600 yards in front of our line, and there, by his coolness and sound judgment obtained and sent back very valuable information as to the enemy movements. In the morning of the 21st September, Private Inwood located a machine-gun which was causing several casualties. He went out alone and bombed the gun and team, killing all but one whom he brought in as a prisoner with the gun.

Thank you for your bravery, sacrifices, and service! September 21, 1917 was your finest hour!

An Amazing Address!

The Most Rev. Mouneer Anis, Archbishop of the Episcopal Church of Jerusalem and the Middle East and member of the Anglican Primates' Standing Committee, has delivered an incredible, faithful, Godly address to TEC's House of Bishops.

Read it all at Stand Firm in Faith.

Some excerpts:

My friends, like you, we want to be relevant to the culture in which we live. More importantly, we want to be salt and light to our societies. That is not an easy calling but it means we must remain distinct and humble at the same time. Without being distinct we cannot be salt and light; without humility we will not represent the one who said, “I am meek and lowly in heart.” We are also continuously challenged whether we should allow the culture to transform the Apostolic Faith we once received, or if we should allow the Gospel of Jesus Christ to transform our culture as it has in the past. As we struggle to answer this question we must never divorce ourselves from the faith that countless men, women and children died to protect. I believer that if we faithfully serve the Church of Christ, He will continue to fulfill his promise that the gates of Hades will not prevail against her...


Anglicans are aware with humility that we are not “the” church but we are one member of the body of Christ, the one Holy Catholic Church. We proclaim this every week in our churches. This places upon us the responsibility to listen to and respect our ecumenical partners.

My friends, you may believe you have discovered a very different truth from that of the majority in the Anglican Communion. It is not just about sexuality, but about your views of Christ, the Gospel, and the authority of the Bible. Please forgive me when I relay that some say you are a different church, others even think that you are a different religion...


With respect, I have to say that those who would prefer to speak of laws and procedures, constitutions and canons, committees and process: you are missing the point! It is our mutual loyalty and fellowship, submitting to one another in the common cause of Jesus Christ that makes us of one Church one faith and one Lord.


I know that you value personal freedom and independence. The whole world learns this from you. You need to demonstrate this by securing freedom for the American orthodox Anglicans who do not share your theological direction. Show your spirit of inclusiveness when you deal with them...

Amen, Amen, AMEN!

Thanks be to God for witnesses such as ++Anis! Thanks and prayers also for Matt Kennedy+ and the others at Stand Firm and TitusOneNine who are our eyes and ears in New Orleans.

HOB Meeting Updates

Stand Firm reports today about resolution proposals from +Jenkins (Bp. Louisiana) and a group of other "Camp Allen/Windsor" Bishops using language that is more in line with the Windsor Report and both the Dromatine and Dar es Saalam Primates' communiques.

I have mixed reactions to these proposals:

1) I am hopeful - and prayerful - that there is enough of an orthodox belief within the HOB that these proposals will see the light of day.

2) The association of two ACN Bishops - +Stanton (Dallas) and +Schofield (San Joaquin) - with +Jenkins' proposal is somewhat encouraging. On the part of +Schofield, I am somewhat surprised he's associated with it given San Joaquin's in-progress actions to disassociate with TEC.

3) I do not think that these proposals go far enough; I am still very uneasy to have any presence under the structure of TEC, barring true repentance on the part of the HOB.

4) The fact that there has been no statements yet from +Duncan (Pittsburgh, and ACN Moderator), +Iker (Ft. Worth), or +Ackerman (Quincy) gives me pause.

While I believe that the HOB and TEC are inexorably fixed on their revisionist course and that neither of the conciliatory (to the AC Primates) proposals have any hope of passing a vote in the HOB, I do know that with God all things are possible. I'm concerned that if such a resolution would pass it pulls the rug out from those of us standing firm for traditional Christianity and against the theological innovations of TEC.

Please continue to pray for Christ's Church, often and loud!

Jesus, please continue to pour out your Holy Spirit onto the House of Bishops. Show them the path. Strengthen them all with your grace, that their words and actions may not be just theirs, but yours. Amen.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Outwit, Outplay, Outlast!

Survivor: China

The new season of Survivor starts tonight! Not going to be live blogging, but will give my takes as the season goes on...

UPDATE: (so much for the not live blog) I'm surprised that CBS didn't have it shot in HD this year...bummer!

The Rt. Rev. Bill Love writes his diocese

+Love is the Bishop of Albany, an Anglican Communion Network diocese. His words from a pre-HOB meeting letter to his flock:

I invite you to join me in praying that the Holy Spirit will come mightily upon this House, touching and transforming the hearts and souls and minds of every Bishop here, helping us to discern and carry out the will of God. May His will and only His will be done. Just as Paul encountered the risen Lord on the road to Damascus, may we too have a Damascus road experience in which we, the House of Bishops, are convicted of that which is not of God, repenting and asking His forgiveness of our sins, and then be given the grace to be faithful and obedient in exercising our ministry as bishops in God’s holy Church, keeping Jesus Christ at the center of all that we do.

Amen, amen! His will be done. Lord, come have Your way with us!

Hat Tip: TitusOneNine

TFH 9/19-20: Captain Everett Parker Pope, USMC

From Medal of Honor Citations:


Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Marine Corps, Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division. Place and date: Peleliu Island, Palau group, 19-20 September 1944. Entered service at: Massachusetts. Born: 16 July 1919, Milton, Mass. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as commanding officer of Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Peleliu Island, Palau group, on 19-20 September 1944. Subjected to pointblank cannon fire which caused heavy casualties and badly disorganized his company while assaulting a steep coral hill, Capt. Pope rallied his men and gallantly led them to the summit in the face of machinegun, mortar, and sniper fire. Forced by widespread hostile attack to deploy the remnants of his company thinly in order to hold the ground won, and with his machineguns out of order and insufficient water and ammunition, he remained on the exposed hill with 12 men and 1 wounded officer determined to hold through the night. Attacked continuously with grenades, machineguns, and rifles from 3 sides, he and his valiant men fiercely beat back or destroyed the enemy, resorting to hand-to-hand combat as the supply of ammunition dwindled, and still maintaining his lines with his 8 remaining riflemen when daylight brought more deadly fire and he was ordered to withdraw. His valiant leadership against devastating odds while protecting the units below from heavy Japanese attack reflects the highest credit upon Capt. Pope and the U.S. Naval Service.

Captain Pope, thank you for your gallantry, service, and sacrifices for the cause of Freedom. September 19 & 20, 1944 was your finest hour!

Congratulations Andy Pettite; Yanks still on the move!

Andy Pettite racked up his 200th career win last night against Baltimore. Toronto obliged by beating Boston again. The Yankees are now just 1.5 games back of the Red Sox with a game at hand.

If I was the Red Sox, I'd be hoping that Detroit doesn't turn it around. Here's to hoping the Red Sox collapse is complete - they go 2-7 over their last nine, the Tigers post a 7-2 or better, and either they have to have a playoff or the Tigers chuck them out of the post-season outright!

House of Bishops Meeting - Pray for the Church!

The Episcopal Church's House of Bishops meeting begins today in New Orleans. Let us all pray, that even at this late hour, repentance will be chosen over innovation.

Let us all pray today for the whole of Christ's Church!

Father, we pray today for the bishops assembled in New Orleans. May they all be filled with your Holy Spirit and truly "defend the faith" as they are called to do. We pray especially for Rowan, the Archbishop of Canterbury, as he struggles with the leadership and unity of the Anglican Communion. I also want to lift up to you Robert and Henry, my diocesan bishops; may you continue to strengthen and encourage them in their stand for traditional and orthodox Christian faith. I pray these things in Jesus' name, amen.

Finally, the best sources of news and commentary coming out of New Orleans will likely be:

Stand Firm in Faith
Anglican TV

Check them out regularly!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Here Come the Yankees!

After drubbing the Orioles last night 12-0 - and Boston losing to Toronto - the Yankees are just 2.5 games back!

BOS: 90-62, 10 games remaining
NYY: 87-64, 11 games remaining

2.5 back with a game at hand? Forget the wild card baby, Yanks will take the division! Echoes of 1978 all around...

Avast, ye scurvy knaves!

Shiver me timbers, it's International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Arrr!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

TFH 9/18: PFC Dewayne T. Williams, USMC

From Medal of Honor Citations:


Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company H, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division. Place and date: Quang Nam Province, Republic of Vietnam, 18 September 1968. Entered service at: Saint Clair, Mich. Born: 18 September 1949, Brown City, Mich. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a rifleman with the 1st Platoon, Company H, in action against communist insurgent forces. Pfc. Williams was a member of a combat patrol sent out from the platoon with the mission of establishing positions in the company's area of operations, from which it could intercept and destroy enemy sniper teams operating in the area. In the night as the patrol was preparing to move from its daylight position to a preselected night position, it was attacked from ambush by a squad of enemy using small arms and hand grenades. Although severely wounded in the back by the close intense fire, Pfc. Williams, recognizing the danger to the patrol, immediately began to crawl forward toward a good firing position. While he was moving under the continuing intense fire, he heard one of the members of the patrol sound the alert that an enemy grenade had landed in their position. Reacting instantly to the alert, he saw that the grenade had landed close to where he was Lying and without hesitation, in a valiant act of heroism, rolled on top of the grenade as it exploded, absorbing the full and tremendous impact of the explosion with his body. Through his extraordinary initiative and inspiring valor in the face of certain death, he saved the other members of his patrol from serious injury and possible loss of life, and enabled them to successfully defeat the attackers and hold their position until assistance arrived. His personal heroism and devotion to duty upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

Dewayne, I honor your sacrifice for the cause of Freedom. September 18, 1968 was your finest hour!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Every day is a gift

One week ago today, I was driving on the Ohio Turnpike south of Cleveland when I was clipped in the left rear by an 18-wheeler, proceeded to spin across three traffic lanes without being hit by anything, and crashed into the center concrete barrier. As providence would have it, the only damage was to my car - I walked away completely unhurt, but with very frazzled nerves.

Today, I made the same trip along the same stretch of road feeling very nervous. The skid marks I left on the pavement are gone, but I did see the black marks on the concrete where my car hit. On passing, I said a brief prayer of thanksgiving for the protection that He assuredly extended to me last week.

Every morning when I wake, I thank Jesus Christ for being given another day. All the more so now, I also ask Him every morning what his plan for me on this day is.

Everything comes from Him above; no life is possible without our Lord and Savior. If you don't give Him thanks daily, I encourage you to do so! As I now pray daily to ask the Lord what is His mind for me, I know not where he will lead me, but I know that I will trust in Him.

Thanks be to God!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

9/11 - Six Years On

Today is September 11. We are still at war. God bless the United States of America.

O thus be it ever when freemen shall stand
Between their lov'd homes and the war's desolation,
Blest with vic'try and peace may the Heav'n-rescued land
Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our Trust."
And the Star-Spangled Banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
-- Francis Scott Key, "The Defense of Fort McHenry"

The following text is from a speech by Winston Churchill, obtained via The Churchill Centre.

You do your worst - and we will do our best.

I must, however, admit that when the storm broke in September, I was for several weeks very anxious about the result. Sometimes the gas failed; sometimes the electricity. There were grievous complaints about the shelters and about conditions in them. Water was cut off, railways were cut or broken, large districts were destroyed, thousands were killed, and many more thousands were wounded. But there was one thing about which there was never any doubt. The courage, the unconquerable grit and stamina of our people, showed itself from the very outset. Without that all would have failed. Upon that rock, all stood unshakable. All the public services were carried on, and all the intricate arrangements, far-reaching details, involving the daily lives of so many millions, were carried out, improvised, elaborated, and perfected in the very teeth of the cruel and devastating storm.
We have to ask ourselves this question: Will the bombing attacks come back again? We have proceeded on the assumption that they will. Many new arrangements are being contrived as a result of the hard experience through which we have passed and the many mistakes which no doubt we have made - for success is the result of making many mistakes and learning from experience. If the lull is to end, if the storm is to renew itself, we will be ready, will will not flinch, we can take it again.

We ask no favours of the enemy. We seek from them no compunction. On the contrary, if tonight our people were asked to cast their vote whether a convention should be entered into to stop the bombing of cities, the overwhelming majority would cry, "No, we will mete out to them the measure, and more than the measure, that they have meted out to us." The people with one voice would say: "You have committed every crime under the sun. Where you have been the least resisted there you have been the most brutal. It was you who began the indiscriminate bombing. We will have no truce or parley with you, or the grisly gang who work your wicked will. You do your worst - and we will do our best." Perhaps it may be our turn soon; perhaps it may be our turn now.

We live in a terrible epoch of the human story, but we believe there is a broad and sure justice running through its theme. It is time that the enemy should be made to suffer in their own homelands something of the torment they have let loose upon their neighbours and upon the world. We believe it to be in our power to keep this process going, on a steadily rising tide, month after month, year after year, until they are either extirpated by us or, better still, torn to pieces by their own people.

It is for this reason that I must ask you to be prepared for vehement counter-action by the enemy. Our methods of dealing with them have steadily improved. They no longer relish their trips to our shores. I do not know why they do not come, but it is certainly not because they have begun to love us more. It may be because they are saving up, but even if that be so, the very fact that they have to save up should give us confidence by revealing the truth of our steady advance from an almost unarmed position to superiority. But all engaged in our defence forces must prepare themselves for further heavy assaults. Your organization, your vigilance, your devotion to duty, your zeal for the cause must be raised to the highest intensity.

We do not expect to hit without being hit back, and we intend with every week that passes to hit harder. Prepare yourselves, then, my friends and comrades, for this renewal of your exertions. We shall never turn from our purpose, however sombre the road, however grievous the cost, because we know that out of this time of trial and tribulation will be born a new freedom and glory for all mankind.

Sir Winston's words are just as true today, as they were six years ago this day, as they were in 1941.