Saturday, November 25, 2006

Jews in Iran

Jews have been in Iran since the diaspora and many have no intention of leaving. In fact, Iran has the largest number of Jews in the Middle East outside of Israel. Jews even have one representative in the Iranian Parliament.

Read the full BBC article about Jews in Iran. You may find interesting information that contradicts the opinions of many Westerners.

Related links

Friday, November 24, 2006

God's earth slow to heal

The ozone hole over the Antarctic is the largest ever.

Despite actions to reduce gasses that deplete the earth's ozone layer, scientists have discovered that the at the current rate, it will take about 60 years to heal. Of course, if countries and corporation let their worship of money overcome their worship of God and protection of God's earth it might never happen.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Give thanks

Dear Lord, our great provider,
we bow our heads in prayer
for all the ways you've blessed our lives
and for Your loving care.

We thank You for the hands
that prepared our special treat
and pray that You will bless all those
who have no food to eat.

Forgive us of our sins
and keep us close today.
And bless this food You've given us.
In Jesus' name, we pray.


[Adapted from a Thanksgiving prayer by Betty Jo Mings]

Friday, November 10, 2006

Birth of MethoBlog

Jay Vorhees has started "the methoblog - a place for United Methodist conversation". The methoblog is the new home of the MethoBlog Roll now that Shane's ministry has mushroomed and left him too little time to keep up with the that Blogroll he kept on his now retired Wesley Blog.

A cool feature of the methoblog is that it lists the "Latest UM Blogposts" from the blogs in the MethoBlog Roll. It takes about an hour or so for a new posting to appear; this new feature is a really great service. Thanks, Jay!

So if you want to keep up with the Methoblogosphere, check out this new blog service linked in the "Methodist and other blogs" section in the right column here.

Evangelicals embrace care for God's earth

Environmentalists and Evangelicals are coming together to be better stewards of God's earth.

On the other hand, the Southern Baptist Convention in June of 2006 passed a resolution denigrating environmental activism and warning that it could create divisions among evangelicals. And James Dobson has said that evangelicals should stay focused on anti-abortion actions and combatting gay marriage.

Yet a pastor af The Vineyard USA was one of 86 evangelical signers of letter urging all Christians as well as the government to combat global warming.

It was a Republican, President Nixon, who supported air and water protection, protection of endangered species, and created the Environmental Protection Agency.

A 2006 Pew Research Center survey found that 66% of white evangelicals believed there was good evidence that God's Earth was getting warmer and 32% blamed human activity for the warming.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Looking like a pastor

The "This isn't what I ordered" blog by a young Methodist pastor from Ohio talks about expectations of pastors in "More pastor expectations: Episode V" (what does a pastor look like?).

The posting addresses several issues. For example, at Annual Conferences, "There are racial minorities, there are the non-gray-haired minorities, and there are the skinny minorities. It's pretty obvious why our health care costs are skyrocketing."

Several interesting comments have been left at the post.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Episcopalians get first female bishop

Bishop K. Jefferts Schori became the first woman anywhere in the Anglican denomination to become a bishop. She is now primate of the U.S. Episcopal Church.
Seven dioceses in the U.S. have refused to accept her authority. Her call for healing and wholeness is therefor totally understandable.

Listen to Sermon Cloud

Sermon Cloud is an unusual and cool site. It stores sermons, which you can listen to online, download or listen as an MP3 type file, or download as a Podcast.
Good ways to wade in the water of Sermon Cloud is to check out the most popular sermons today, "Most amens for the week", month, or best sermons ever. Scroll to the bottom of the home page to see a category listing.
The Sermon Cloud "swicki" on the right shows which search terms (tags) are most popular on the site.
Pastors can syndicate, podcast, and publish sermons online - assuming that they are courageous and confident enough.