Archive for June 1st, 2011

There are a number of priests from this community, the first African missionary order,  in the local Roman Catholic diocese of  Youngstown. I have been impressed by the simplicity and freshness of their witness to the Gospel of Christ, not least the time nine years ago when I was hospitalized and wanted to confess my sins. The chaplain of Mercy Hospital in Canton was a member of this congregation, and was a wonderful and healing presence to me in a very difficult time.

I cannot but reflect on the time, a millenium and a half ago, when the Irish monks evangelized the very peoples who had sent missionaries to them. Indeed, it is hard not to see parallels; our empire is in the decline and fall stage, our people are increasingly godless, even if, as the polls show, sentimental religiosity retains a certain hold, and it is not uncommon to find priests from Africa and India and other recently evangelized places in our pulpits.

To read about this community: http://www.apostlesofjesus.org/

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You wouldn’t think that a song called “Murder in the City” would turn out to be a tender reflection on family and love. But you would be wrong. From my favorite new band, The Avett Brothers, who can a sing the sweetest country/folk ballads, and can also rock out on banjos, cellos and guitars, in what has been called “punkgrass”: 

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You ascended in glory, O Christ our God! You delighted the Disciples with the promise of the Holy Spirit. Through this blessing they were assured that You are the Son of God, the Redeemer of the world!  

(Coptic icon, iconographer unknown)

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“And here’s the dirty little secret: Although the Iraq war has indeed calmed down since Obama took power, this was going to happen anyway. Bush signed the Status of Forces Agreement in 2008 setting forth the withdrawal schedule that Obama is mostly following—if anything, Obama has slowed it down a bit. A third Bush term would have almost surely overseen the same Iraq policy we have now. On the other hand, it would have also probably continued “neglecting” Afghanistan, in contrast with Obama’s energetic escalation of that war.”

More: http://original.antiwar.com/anthony-gregory/2011/05/31/worse-than-a-third-bush-term/

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