Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 52 year old Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church of Detroit. Piety Hill refers to the old name for our neighborhood. The neighborhood has changed a great deal in the over 150 years we have been on this corner (but not our traditional biblical theology) and it is now known for the neighboring theatres, the professional baseball and football stadiums and new hockey/basketball arena.

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Location: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Tigers ending with a bang, good news about Inge

After faltering terribly in the last few weeks (lost 12 of 13 I think) while I was away on vacation, they have one 3 straight from AL East leaders Tampa Bay, and looked pretty darn good! They have two more games left - TB Rays today, and a make up in Chicago tomorrow. That could be an important game since Chicago and Minnesota are fighting for a playoff spot. (I am cheering for the Twins to do it - can't stand the White Sox).

But great news for my favorite Tiger Brandon Inge. He is back as the regular 3rd sacker, assuming no problems between now and next season!

Of course, there will certainly have to be some shaking up and pitching help during the off-season.

Here is the article from www.detroittigers.com
DETROIT -- The Tigers went into this season trying to figure out what to do with Brandon Inge after displacing him as their third baseman. They've ended the season by putting him back at the hot corner.
What began as a way to fill in for the injured Carlos Guillen will be a full-time move next year. Inge will head into next season as the everyday third baseman, according to manager Jim Leyland. Guillen, who played third base for much of the season before missing the final month with a lower back injury, will become the regular left fielder.
It's a move that the Tigers believe addresses both the team's struggling infield defense from this year and Guillen's long-term health. While Guillen improved markedly at third base as the summer went along, he wasn't going to compare with Inge, whose range and athleticism gave Leyland the argument to rank him among the best third basemen in the American League.
"It's the best thing for Inge -- it's the best thing for the team," Leyland said.
Two months ago, the Tigers traded Ivan Rodriguez to the Yankees with the idea that Inge would be their full-time catcher going into next season. While Rodriguez is a free agent at season's end, Inge has two more years remaining on the four-year, $24 million contract he signed after the 2006 season. Catching provided a return to the position he played for the first few years of his Major League career until the Rodriguez signing in 2004 made Inge an infielder.
Instead of this late-season stint preparing Inge for next season, the Tigers decided to move in a new direction. By mid-September, with Guillen still out, Inge was playing regularly at third, while prospect Dusty Ryan has received the bulk of the starts behind the plate since being called up from Triple-A Toledo on Sept. 2. Inge caught on Saturday for the first time since Sept. 15.
What the Tigers will do at catcher next year isn't clear. They've taken a good look at Ryan and have been impressed, but his limited experience above Double-A could be a factor. The Tigers could decide to platoon Ryan with a veteran addition, give Ryan the bulk of the duty starting out or give him more seasoning in the Minors while someone else holds down the job in Detroit for a while.
Guillen, meanwhile, will reprise the outfield experiment the Tigers briefly tried in June to get Inge -- then a utility player -- more playing time at third. An injury to Inge quickly ended the need for the move, but Guillen's recurring back issues -- inflammation from a pinched nerve -- cost him the entire month of September. He is expected to be fine next season.
"One thing I like about it," Leyland said, "is that Carlos will be in a comfort zone, because he's been out there before in his career."
Guillen began his professional career as an outfielder in the Houston Astros' farm system more than a decade ago. He was later converted to shortstop before starting his big league career in Seattle.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


Saturday, September 27, 2008

What I am reading

continuing a very occasional update....

Recently Finished -

Lion in the White House by Aida Donald (a biography of Teddy Roosevelt) (Audio)

Grover Cleveland: a study in political courage by Roland Hugins

Vagabonds by John Foden (soon to be pubished - I received an advance copy).

Almost Done -
Inside Power by Gary Sheffield (received and autographed copy April 2007, just getting around to reading it)

Just starting -
Renewal of the Church: Five mediations by Richard S. M. Emrich (onetime Bishop of Michigan, published 1952)

My life with Karol: my forty year friendship with the man who became pope by Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz (audio)

Ongoing theological and mediative
Soul of the Apostolate - Dom Jean Baptiste Chautard
The Way - Jose Maria Escriva
Memoriale Vitae Sacerdotalis - translated by A.P. Forbes (published 1882)
Simply Bonaventure - Ilia Delio, OSF
The Bible ( a privately printed translation of the New Testament by a late parishioner of Good Shepherd, Rosemont and classics professor at Bryn Mawr College. I am reading it as a 'novel' to get a fresh look through his translation)


Thursday, September 25, 2008

My High School produces saints?

I read with interest in the alumni magazine for my high school, Orchard Lake St. Mary's Prep, that one of her sons, Fr. Walter J. Ciszek, S.J., class of 1926, is up for canonization in the Roman Catholic Church!

If holiness 'rubs off', it is nice to know I have walked and prayed in the same places as a future saint! (ps - it doesn't 'rub off', but holy places, things, and people can inspire one to greater devotion!).

Here is a biography that I found here http://freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/1682244/posts

Note that it is written by Fr. George Rutler, a former Episcopal Priest and onetime Rector of the parish where I was the curate in Rosemont, PA.


June 2006 Fr. GEORGE W. RUTLER
Walter Ciszek(1904-1984)
Before there was an Armistice Day, Walter Ciszek was born on November 11, 1904, and lived through a crucified century. Death came gracefully in 1984 on the feast of the Immaculate Conception.
In boyhood he was a bully in a gang on the gritty streets of Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, and Ciszek’s Polish immigrant father dragged him to the police station, hoping to put him into a reform school. Everyone thought he was joking when the eighth grader announced that he would enter the Polish minor seminary. The seminarian swam in an icy lake and rose before dawn to run five miles, pummeling the body like his forebear in holy belligerence, Saul of Tarsus. A biography of St. Stanislaus Kostka inspired him to go to the Bronx in 1928, where he told the Jesuits he wanted to join up.
Guileless Ciszek then informed his superiors that God wanted him to go to Russia, where in ten years more than 150,000 Russian Orthodox priests had been wiped out. They sent him to study in Rome at the “Russicum,” the Jesuits’ Russian center, and finally in 1937 he celebrated his first Mass in the Byzantine rite. Aiming to infiltrate Russia through Poland, he taught ethics in a seminary in Albertyn. But in 1939 Hitler invaded from the west and then the Russians came from the east, despoiling the seminary, and so the young alter Christus was on the cross between two thieves. In 1940 the Ukrainian Archbishop of Lvov permitted him to enter Russia, and he headed for the Ural Mountains, a two-week trip in a box car with 25 men. While hauling logs in a lumber camp, he said Mass furtively in the forest. Secret police arrested him as a Vatican spy when they found his Mass wine, which they called nitroglycerine, and kept him in a cell 900 feet square for two weeks with 100 other men.
After six more months, beaten with rubber truncheons, starved, and drugged, he signed a confession, and this he called one of the darkest moments of his life. On July 26, 1942, he was sentenced to 15 years’ hard labor, starting with five years of solitary confinement in Moscow’s hideous Lubyanka prison, and then off to Siberia. After a slow 2,500-mile trip to Krasnoyarsk in a sweltering boxcar, he was sent on a barge to Norilsk, 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle, and worked 12-hour days shoveling coal into freighters, with rags for shoes. In hushed tones he said Mass for Polish prisoners using a vodka glass for a chalice and wine made from stolen raisins. Having been transferred to work in the coal mines for a year, he became a construction worker in 1947, returning to the mines in 1953.
Release came in 1955 and he got news to his sisters for the first time since 1939 that he was alive. In Krasnoyarsk he quickly established several parishes. Then came four years just south in Abakan, working as an auto mechanic. In 1963 the KGB hauled him back to Moscow and handed him over to the American consulate in exchange for two Soviet agents. As the plane flew past the Kremlin, he related, “Slowly, carefully, I made the sign of the cross over the land that I was leaving.” In New York, undeterred by arthritis and cardiac ailments, he gave spiritual direction at Fordham University in a residence now named for him, writing his monumental books With God in Russia and He Leadeth Me. One summer day I was driven by some parish teenagers to a barbeque with him in New Rochelle. We arrived in the quiet suburban neighborhood in a noisily combustive van painted in psychedelic designs, used by the boys for their rock band. My last sight of him was in the garden, bouncing a small girl on his knee. His hair was very white and his radiance was not of the summer sun. “These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Rv 7:14).


Being put out of its misery...

....the Tigers 2008 season that is.

With a 12 out of 13 game slide, the Tigers are now in LAST place. Before opening day, with all the free agent acquistions, most were willing to crown the Tigers world champions before a pitch was thrown. What a disappointment this has been.

Todd Jones is retiring, Kenny Rogers hasn't looked too good recently (perhaps his age is catching up with him). Joel Zumaya is hurt again and probably done. Nate Robertson looked tired last night. Verlander has had a sub-par seasons, and Jeremy Bonderman has been out most of the season. Pitching matters.

But then again, so does hitting, and they have had lackluster bats!

As they used to say in Brooklyn (about the Dodgers) "wait until next year"!

Of course, all that being said, I may go to the game today to cheer my head off for them anyway.

On a personal baseball note, I saw my doctor yesterday about my shoulder and he thought it might be calcification of the rotator cuff. He gave me some exercises to do, and if there isn't improvement, than off to an orthopedic surgeon for some grinding.


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

"local" events have international consequences.

A big problem with the Bishop's pre-emptive strike on Bishop Duncan is that they have proven the international bishops right -that The Episcopal Church USA has a vendetta against traditionalist (evangelical and angl0-catholic) and are not only bending scripture to their own agenda, but are also distorting their own canons in a power grab.

Here is an article from the London Times as proof of this...
In addition to the article below, the numbers of bishops/provinces/standing committees/primates speaking out about it increases daily. Go to www.kendallharmon.net/t19 for that ongoing tally.

September 23, 2008

Archbishop of Canterbury urged to create new province for US conservatives
Senior bishops express "shock" at the Episcopal Church's decision to depose the Bishop of Pittsburgh
Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent

The Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams is facing growing pressure to create a new Anglican province for conservatives after a leading evangelical was effectively defrocked in the US.
Six senior Church of England bishops have come out in support of deposed US bishop Bob Duncan, declaring themselves “deeply saddened and shocked.”
Headed by the Bishop of Winchester, the Right Rev Michael Scott-Joynt, the Bishops of Blackburn, Chester, Chichester, Exeter and Rochester joined in declaring their belief that the deposed Bishop of Pittsburgh remains “a bishop in good standing in the Anglican Communion.”
In an interview with The Times, the Bishop of Rochester Dr Michael Nazir-Ali said the time had now come for Dr Williams to create a new province for conservatives in the US.
Another senior bishop, a former primate of the Southern Cone province in Latin America, also wrote an open letter to Dr Williams demanding the immediate suspension of The Episcopal Church from the Anglican Communion and for the recognition of a new conservative province.
Bishops of The Episcopal Church voted last week to depose Bishop Duncan after deciding that he had breached canon law by “abandonment of the communion of the church.”
Bishop Duncan has led his diocese, from the Church’s conservative evangelical wing, in a rebellion against the liberal direction of the wider church in the West.
Next month, under his leadership, the diocese had been expected to vote to join the Province of the Southern Cone, headed by British-born primate Bishop Gregory Venables.
Bishop Venables has already received Bishop Duncan into his province and a majority in the diocese is expected to go ahead with the vote and join him there.
But a minority will remain with the US-based province and work on re-establishing the Pittsburgh diocese, marking the beginning of myriad expensive and lengthy legal battles over who owns the churches and other valuable ecclesiastical properties attached to the diocese.
Bishops of the Episcopal Church voted by 88 to 35 at a meeting in Salt Lake City to remove Bishop Duncan from all ordained ministry.
It is significant that Church of England bishops as senior as Bishop Scott-Joynt and Dr Michael Nazir-Ali continue to recognise Bishop Duncan’s ministry.
Their statement will increase speculation that the split in the US church is heading over the Atlantic to Britain.
Dr Nazir-Ali told The Times: “I hope that a province of the orthodox in America will be recognised in the Anglican Communion.” He said that what had happened to Bishop Duncan showed that a structural solution was necessary.
A new province would be the 39th province of the communion. It would not be the first to share geographical territory with another province. In Europe, there are two Anglican jurisdictions operating already: the Church of England and The Episcopal Church.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, who is visiting Lourdes this week, made no comment. At Lourdes on Wednesday this week, he will be addressing a pilgrimage of Anglican bishops, clergy and laity. He will be sharing the platform with Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Holy See’s Council for Christian Unity.
Unless the springs at Lourdes work one of their rare miracles, Anglicans will emerge more aware than ever that innovations such as gay bishops, women bishops and women priests have ended all hopes of re-uniting the Anglicans and Catholic churches, split since the Reformation four centuries ago.


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Saturday, September 20, 2008

shameful, just shameful

We are driving back from our vacation, and am at my brother's house in South Carolina. It is my first chance to check the internet in over a week, and I read this VERY SHAMEFUL news from the House of Bishops. All this in spite of the fact that 1) he hasn't abandoned the communion as of the vote, 2) the three senior bishops did not vote to depose him and Schori went ahead with it anyway, 3) 128 of the 290 eligible bishops were present (not the quorum required by canon, but reinterpreted by the current regime), 4) Only 56 of those voting to depose were active diocesan bishops (half of the 112 dioceses), and as Kendall Harmon's TitusOneNine further points out, 5) "A mere 6 dioceses (Los Angeles, New York, Washington, Connecticut, Chicago, North Carolina and Maine) accounted for 21 of the 88 YES votes (nearly 1/4 of the total Yes votes).".

From http://www.livingchurch.org/news/news-updates/2008/9/18/house-of-bishops-deposes-bishop-robert-duncan

House of Bishops Deposes Bishop Robert Duncan
Posted on: September 18, 2008
The House of Bishops brushed aside procedural challenges and deposed Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh from the ordained ministry of The Episcopal Church Sept. 18.

The final tally was 88 yes, 35 no, with four abstentions, according to one bishop. Those results are not official, however.

Present were 128 bishops. Not present were 15 who could not attend for a variety of reasons, including the bishops of Texas who are dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Ike. Nine did not respond and were not present, according to Episcopal News Service.

Immediately after his deposition from the House of Bishops of The Episcopal Church, Bishop Duncan was welcomed into the House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of the Southern Cone, according to Presiding Bishop Gregory Venables.

“As was resolved by resolution made at the Provincial Synod in Valparaiso last November 2007, we are happy to welcome Bishop Duncan into the Province of the Southern Cone as a member of our House of Bishops, effective immediately,” Bishop Venables said. “Neither the Presiding Bishop nor the House of Bishops of The Episcopal Church has any further jurisdiction over his ministry. We pray for all Anglicans in Pittsburgh as they consider their own relationship with The Episcopal Church in the coming weeks.”

While Bishop Duncan continues to believe that the deposition is unlawful, he will not challenge it prior to the end of the Diocese of Pittsburgh’s annual convention unless forced to do so by the leadership of The Episcopal Church. On Oct. 4, diocesan convention deputies will consider the second and final reading of a constitutional change that would realign the diocese with the Province of the Southern Cone.

With the passage of that constitutional change, the diocese will be free to welcome Bishop Duncan back as its bishop. In the meantime, under the diocese’s governing documents, the standing committee will serve as the diocese’s ecclesiastical authority.

“This is of course a very painful moment for Pittsburgh Episcopalians,” said the Rev. David Wilson, president of the standing committee. “The leadership of The Episcopal Church has inserted itself in a most violent manner into the affairs and governance of our diocese. While we await the decision of the diocesan convention on realignment to a different province of the Anglican Communion, we will stand firm against any further attempts by those outside our boundaries to intimidate us.”


Saturday, September 13, 2008

stepping away for a while.

After morning worship tomorrow AM I will be out of computer contact - I am not bringing the laptop to Disney!

Post you in a week or so.


one restored, one out?

The Presiding executive of the Episcopal Church is using all sorts of sophistry to manipulate the canons to get her way in trying depose another of my former bishops - Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh.

She is trying to throw him out, without a trial, by using a canon for those who leave to go to another denomination. He hasn't. His diocese might vote to leave and Shori decided since he is letting the vote happen he has abandoned the Communion. She is wrong. When she tried to follow the canonical course of consulting the three senior bishops they refused to press the charges, so she is now making it up as she goes along.
I hope the rest of the bishops have the sense to be fair and truthful interpreting the canons.
But then again, many can't seem to be able to properly interpret scripture which has gotten us into this trouble to start with!
excerpt from here

As the House has been informed previously, in November 2007 I directed a submission by my Office to the Title IV Review Committee that enclosed materials suggesting that Bishop Duncan had abandoned the Communion of this Church within the meaning of Canon IV.9. That submission recited that Bishop Duncan had supported first readings of amendments to the Constitution of the Diocese of Pittsburgh at the last Diocesan Convention that, among other things, would delete the unqualified accession by the Diocese to the Constitution and canons of the Episcopal Church. The submission also recited Bishop Duncan's leadership of a program under which delegates to the next Diocesan Convention in October 2008 would determine whether or not to adopt a second reading of the proposed amendments to the Diocesan Constitution deleting the "accession" clause, and pass a resolution purporting to make the Diocese a member of another Province within the Anglican Communion. Further details of Bishop Duncan's program were outlined in a second submission to the Review Committee by certain lay and clerical members of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.

The thrust of the foregoing submission by my Office was not that Bishop Duncan had already left the Episcopal Church, but rather that he had in his episcopal leadership role taken the position that the Diocese had the option (highlight mine - SJK+) of either remaining subject to the Constitution and canons of this Church or leaving this Church for membership in another Province of the Communion; and that in that role he was encouraging the Diocese to choose to leave. The submission suggested, therefore, that Bishop Duncan, by pressing his position that the Diocese had such a choice and should exercise it by disaffiliating from the Episcopal Church, had abandoned the Communion of this Church by "an open renunciation of the ... Discipline ... of this Church" within the meaning of Canon IV.9(1)(i).

The Review Committee evidently agreed with that analysis and on December 17, 2007 certified to me as Presiding Bishop that Bishop Duncan had abandoned the Communion of this Church. Shortly thereafter, I asked the three senior bishops having jurisdiction in this Church, pursuant to Canon IV.9(1), to consent to Bishop Duncan's inhibition pending presentation of the matter to the House of Bishops, but not all these bishops gave their consent.


one more on Bishop MacBurney

From David Virtue - www.virtueonline.org

Presiding Bishop Lifts Inhibition Against MacBurney.
"No Regret for my Actions", says Bishop
By David W. Virtue www.virtueonline.org
The Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church lifted the inhibition against retired Quincy Bishop Edward MacBurney saying the Anglo-Catholic bishop apologized for conducting confirmations in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego. A news story put out by the Episcopal News Service said MacBurney had apologized to Bishop Mathes for going into his diocese and confirming a number of people at one of Mathes' parishes. However, MacBurney told VOL by phone that he only apologized for upsetting Bishop Jim Mathes by intruding in his diocese but he did not regret confirming the 14 communicants at Holy Trinity Church.
"I apologized for upsetting him and that's all, MacBurney told VOL. In a September 9 order, Jefferts Schori said that MacBurney had voluntarily submitted to discipline (Canon IV.2(9) and (10)) over a presentment which the Title IV Review Committee issued on Jan. 24, Bishop Mathes, who originally asked for MacBurney to be disciplined because he conducted unauthorized confirmations in San Diego, told ENS September 10 that the order and discipline of the church had been "maintained and in some way enhanced by this process." "I wrote one line to Mathes apologizing for not respecting his authority as the Bishop of San Diego on the occasion of visiting Holy Trinity on June 3rd 2007. I did not regret what I did in confirming some 14 young people and adults at the church. "I am not sorry at all. They lifted the inhibition. My attorney Wicks Stephens fought a long way in Philadelphia with the church attorney Lawrence Wright. He put up a good fight in how different canons were being used." MacBurney said he thought they really wanted to get rid of this inhibition. "They didn't want a costly trial with mud all over their faces. Another reason is that The National Church has three dioceses ready to leave TEC. They have other things on their mind. I am a rather small fish. I was penalized and inhibited for 5 months; it was not without its cost. I am still an Episcopal bishop in good standing."He said he got the news of his inhibition being lifted by fax from his attorney. "I have not heard personally from either Mrs. Jefferts Schori or Bishop Mathes."MacBurney said he was relieved to have the inhibition lifted because he is now able to take services in a couple of churches in October. "It hasn't impressed me. The legal situation in TEC is very bumpy and uneven with some bishops being penalized and others not."


Friday, September 12, 2008

ENS's take on Bishop MacBurney's restoration

From Episcopal News Service

[Episcopal News Service] Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has removed the inhibition she placed in April on retired Episcopal Diocese of Quincy Bishop Edward MacBurney.
In a September 9 order, Jefferts Schori said that MacBurney had voluntarily submitted to discipline (Canon IV.2(9) and (10)) over a presentment which the Title IV Review Committee issued on Jan. 24, 2008.
Diocese of San Diego Bishop Jim Mathes, who originally asked for MacBurney to be disciplined because he conducted unauthorized confirmations in San Diego, told ENS September 10 that the order and discipline of the church had been "maintained and in some way enhanced by this process."
"Bishop MacBurney's decision is the result of my efforts and those of others to find a non-judicial outcome to an unfortunate event," Mathes said September 10 in his weekly email to diocesan clergy. "Today, the order of our church and the collegiality of the House of Bishops have been enhanced."
The process "held a bishop of the church accountable to his colleagues and this was a good thing," Mathes told ENS.
"I grateful to Bishop MacBurney for his role in this," Mathes said, explaining that MacBurney's willingness to apologize for his actions "provided us a way to provide forgiveness."
Jefferts Schori's September 9 order admonishes MacBurney to not make any other such visits and to apologize in writing to Mathes "for not respecting his authority as Bishop of that Diocese."
Anglican Province of the Southern Cone Archbishop Gregory Venables had invited MacBurney to perform confirmations at an Episcopal congregation in the Diocese of San Diego that claimed to be affiliated with the Southern Cone. MacBurney agreed and did so in June 2007 at Holy Trinity Parish without Mathes' permission.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

If true - wonderful news!!!

I received an email from a list I am on, stating that Bishop MacBurney received word that Katherine Jefferts-Schori lifted the inhibition against him, restoring him to his full function as a bishop of the church.

If this is true, it is a time for great rejoicing for the Bishop who adopted me and ordained me a deacon, and who has been a good friend and visitor to St. John's!

Click on the 'label' below for some background information.

Te Deum Laudamus..........


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Another downtown Church hit!

My heart goes out to Fr. Koehler at Most Holy Trinity!

FYI - St. John's has an alarm system and video monitoring which can record the intruders.


The Rev. Russ Kohler, longtime pastor of Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Detroit's Corktown, spent part of Tuesday searching pawn shops and antique stores for cherished artifacts and holy vessels that were stolen from one of Detroit most-recognized and historic churches.
Thieves broke into Most Holy Trinity sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning. The parish janitor alerted Kohler, who theorizes the thieves lit candlesticks in the church to illuminate their ransacking -- and then took the candlesticks with them, too.
"There was candlewax everywhere," said Kohler.
From the side altar, the thieves took the tabernacle, a heavy, ornate box that held consecrated communion hosts to bring to homebound parishioners. Catholics believe consecrated hosts are the body of Christ.
Among other items stolen were chalices, brass bells, candleholders, and a ciborium, which holds the communion hosts. Also stolen were a sprinkler for holy water and a ceiling chandelier that dates to 1800s, said Kohler. The chandelier had once held kerosene lanterns a century ago, but now was wired for light.
The thieves left behind two large crosses, but ripped from one of them a metal figures of Jesus, Kohler said.
"This isn't the first time Jesus is with thieves," Kohler said.
The thieves picked open locks and the church safe, and cleaned it out. There was no money in the safe. However, Kohler said in the safe were two chalices - one gold that he received in 1973 at his ordination into priesthood and a silver one by a local artist.
The parish is marking its 175th anniversary. The current builidng dates to 1855. Kohler believes the thieves pushed open a window on the Sixth Street side of the church to gain entry during the night.
The church's single spire can be seen on the western edge of downtown Detroit. The parish has been renowned for its service to the poor, which was brought to the forefront by the late Rev. Clement Kern. The parish operates an elementary school and a health clinic. The church, which now has a largely Hispanic population, draws area dignitaries and elected officials for its annual mass celebrating St. Patrick's Day and Detroit's Irish heritage.
Anyone with information can call Detroit Police Southwest District Investigative Operations at 313-596-5340.


Thursday, September 04, 2008

Getting to the root of ECUSA's theological condition

I read this quote recently in a book I just finished (Marginal Catholics by Ivan Clatterbuck, Gracewing Press, 1993, p.218) from the late C of E theologian Fr. Eric Mascall.

For the question which faces every Christian body today and which underlies all individual practical issues in this this: is the Christian religion something revealed by God in Christ, which demand our grateful obedience, or is it something to be made up by ourselves to our own specifications, according to our own immediate desires? (Mascall, Eric, Saraband, Gracewing Press, 1992, p. 378)

Well - there it is, isn't it.....

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A hard day for the City of Detroit

The Mayor had to resign today, after pleading guilty to two of the felony counts.

This could have been settled months ago, if the Mayor would have been honest right from the start (actually, if he had been honest from the very start none of this would have happened).

Instead he postured, blamed the media, the suburbs, etc....

And today he had to admit he lied on the stand in his testimony in the whistle blower case.
This after, I am sure, hundreds of thousands of additional lawyers fees to try to wiggle his way out of it.

Resignations of appointees are starting to pile up, including the Chief of Police (perhaps the next chief will have the good police sense to reappoint the mounted unit!).

And a number of city council members are being investigated for a bribery probe by the FBI.

God help the city of Detroit. The citizens deserve better leadership.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Rector's Rambling - August 31, 2008

A very important part of the life of the Church is to have agreement on the fundamentals of the Faith. Of course, the Scriptures are our primary source for this, and the Creeds have been the other central unifying force in the Church. The word “Creed” comes from the Latin word Credo, the opening word of the Creed, “I believe”
The Creeds were written as statements of what is essential for belief, because the contents are true. The Apostles Creed (also called the baptismal creed) is the earliest such formula. This is the shortest of the three creeds, and answers the basic question of who is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. This is the Creed we recite at Morning and Evening Prayer.
Subsequent Creeds, Nicene and Athanasian (commonly called), were written in response to questions raised that were not specifically answered by the Apostles Creed. These Creeds were adopted by the Councils (gatherings) of the worldwide Church before the 5th Century.
In our modern age there have been attempts to change the Creeds. New liturgies begin the Creed “We believe”, which can leave out personal accountability for every article (I have heard this excuse used, saying, “I may not believe one or two phrases, but overall enough of us here do so I say it on Sunday”). Others have written new ‘creeds’ which have no basis in scriptural truth but rather in political and/or personal agenda.
Recently an Episcopal priest had published a letter in the national church newspaper , stating that the creeds are “defective and need to be taken out of service.” Why? Not enough of his personal interpretation about Jesus. His justification? A quote from a gnostic text rejected as a false teaching over 1700 years ago.
The Church must have unity on fundamentals—The Creeds– or we will be stifled in our mission to proclaim the Truth of Jesus Christ!


Monday, September 01, 2008

Labor Day

We were going to go down to the Church to the see the Labor parade today because we originally thought the Democrat Pres and VP candidates were going to be in the parade. Then we heard that the Pres candidate would not be in the parade, but would speak at Hart Plaza at the end. With a Tiger game also happening around the Church we decided it would be too hectic there.
We also had a passing thought to go down to Hart Plaza - and I am glad we didn't for two reasons.
1) A friend went down with her sons, stood in line for 3 hours and at 10am realized they still had over an hour in line (as they approached Hart Plaza in line they realized the line went down around by Cobo and back!) so they left. The speech was scheduled for 11am. It started about 11:30.
2) Listening to it on the radio, after all the "thank you"s to individuals, & groups, he then said he was going to give a speech on the importance of the Labor movement in America and how important it is, etc., but instead he talked about the Hurricane in New Orleans and how we need to come together as Americans to help those being affected. Basically, after the "thank you"s he perhaps spoke for 10 minutes! Imagine waiting in line for 3 or 4 hours to hear a 10 minute talk?

In this presidental election year we are trying to expose the boys to politics so they can see how our democracy works (with homeschooling we are always looking for learning opportunities!). On Friday we are going to go see the Republican Pres/VP candidates, and will look for another opportunity to see the Democrat (with this being a 'swing' state, I think they will both be back several times!!!).

Plans for today? Morning workout, playing catch (baseball/football) with the boys, and prepping for a little BBQ this evening. And of course we need to get over to the community pool for a last swim before it closes for the season.

Collect For Every Man in his Work (1928 BCP)
ALMIGHTY God, our heavenly Father, who declarest thy glory and showest forth thy handiwork in the heavens and in the earth; Deliver us, we beseech thee, in our several callings, from the service of mammon, that we may do the work which thou givest us to do, in truth, in beauty, and in righteousness, with singleness of heart as thy servants, and to the benefit of our fellow men; for the sake of him who came among us as one that serveth, thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.