Thursday, July 08, 2010
A nasty one for the "sisters"
To feminists, Christian women must be the ultimate downtrodden victims of the "patriarchy" and hence deeply frustrated and unhappy. Like most feminist dogma, however, the truth seems to be the reverse. Fundamentalist Christian women seem in fact to be overwhelmingly happy and content with their church and religion. See below:
Two months ago Jim Henderson and Lisa Whittle contracted with The Barna Group to ask women to respond to a number of questions about their experience with the church.
They (Barna Group) spoke with 603 women who met the following qualifications: 18 years or older, described themselves as “Christian” And had attended a Christian church service at least once during the past six months. Among those women, 63% met the survey criteria for being a “Born Again Christian.” ...
1. 84% say that their church’s perspective on women in ministry is almost identical, very similar, or somewhat similar to their own.
2. 83% say that their Senior Pastor is somewhat, highly or completely supportive of women leading in their church
3. 82% say they can tell by their church’s actions that the church values the leadership of women
4. 81% say that their church provides women with the same degree of leadership opportunities as Jesus would.
5. 72% say they possess a lot of spiritual freedom in their life
6. 70% say that the media has little influence on their decision-making
7. 71% say fear is not something they experience ever or often in their life
8. 62% say that ALL leadership roles are open to them in their church.
9. Only 1% say they often struggle with jealousy
10. Among those who feel they are capable of doing more to serve God, and should be doing more, only 4% say that their fear of failure is holding them back from doing more to serve God.
These results have caused some fury among women who claim to be Christians but who pick and choose what Bible teachings they like. e.g here and here. It is they who seem to be the unhappy ones. Putting your own wisdom above the wisdom of the New Testament is an unpromising way to find and experience the great power of real Christianity. The big-ego women concerned would be wise to heed Matthew 5:5.
I note that the most conservative diocese in the Anglican communion -- Sydney -- has their theological seminary overflowing with students -- and a large number of the students appear to be women -- despite a clear Bible-based teaching in that diocese limiting the formal role of women in the church to the rank of deacon: No women priests, let alone Bishops!
School sports day ban for father with no criminal records check
Insanity as only the British can do it. Every jumped-up little pipsqueak who gets a tiny bit of power loves to hurt people by excercising it
A school turned a father away from his son's first sports day after banning parents who have not been checked by police from mixing with pupils.
The taxi driver had gone to watch his son, a year seven pupil, compete in sprints and egg-and-spoon races. But teachers refused to let him spectate because they did not believe he had undergone checks by the Criminal Records Bureau.
Rather than argue, the 'mortified' father left quietly so he would not embarrass his son as he took part in the games at the 1,200-pupil De Lisle Catholic Science school in Loughborough, Leicestershire.
The school's policy says that any parent who has not passed the checks is banned from attending events in which pupils take part. The rules are aimed at shielding children from paedophiles.
But critics say they have gone far beyond their original remit. For example, parents picking up groups of children from school or hosting foreign exchange pupils have to undergo checks or face fines.
Yesterday the father said that he regularly underwent Criminal Records Bureau checks for his job as a taxi driver. The father, who did not want to be named to protect his son's identity, told a Talksport radio programme: 'I couldn't believe it when they told me I wasn't allowed in because I didn't have the relevant CRB checks. 'I'd called the school that morning to ask if it would be OK if I came along and they said it would be no problem. But when I got to the school the assistant head teacher said that as I hadn't had a CRB check then I couldn't watch.
'Rather than kick up a fuss and embarrass my son I just turned around and walked away. I was fuming. She made me feel like it was wrong to want to watch my son take part in his first sports day. 'I'm a taxi driver and I have to have regular CRB checks as part of my licence. I've never had any trouble.
'What is the world coming to when parents can't watch their own kids take part in what is a big day in their young lives? I'm all for protecting kids, but surely there has to be a place for common sense.'
The school said in a statement: 'We fully appreciate that one parent was upset by our policy regarding the attendance of parents at sports days. 'As standard procedure, all our policies are subject to regular review and are changed to meet the needs of our students. 'We regret that on this occasion one parent was upset and we look to review our policy appropriately.'
A spokesman for Leicestershire County Council told Talksport: 'Parents should have access to school activities. 'We certainly do not issue any guidance to say parents should have a CRB check to attend school sports days. 'The day-to-day running of the school is a matter for the school and its governors, but we are contacting the school to discuss their policy with them.'
Homosexual priest blocked from becoming Church of England bishop
Conservative parishes have the big congregations and hence most of the money. Money talks even to the dressup queens who run the Church of England
An openly homosexual cleric has been blocked from becoming a Church of England bishop, The Daily Telegraph has learnt. Members of the Crown Nominations Commission, which includes Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, rejected calls for Dr Jeffrey John to be made the next Bishop of Southwark. The Dean of St Albans, who is in a civil partnership with another priest, was on the shortlist for the post and was considered to be a front-runner for the job.
David Cameron had been made aware of his nomination and is believed to have been supportive of promoting the homosexual cleric. However, a secret meeting of senior Church figures has decided to overlook Dr John amid fears that his consecration would have provoked a split in the Church.
Conservative Anglican leaders had warned that evangelical parishes would not recognise him as a bishop and instead would seek “alternative episcopal oversight”.
But the snub will infuriate liberal clergy who believed he was the outstanding candidate and that his appointment would signal a move towards greater inclusion for homosexuals in the Church.
It is understood that discussions at the two-day meeting, held at a secret location in Stepney, were heated with members of the Commission arguing over whether they should select Dr John. Dr Williams is said to have been furious at the pressure placed on him and the other members by a leak to The Sunday Telegraph, which revealed the dean was on the shortlist. He asked the rest of the Commission to swear an oath of secrecy about the talks.
Church insiders considered that his name would not have been included unless there were plans to make him a bishop, as Dr John was forced to stand down from becoming the Bishop of Reading in 2003 after it emerged he was in a homosexual, but celibate, relationship. His supporters fear the development represents further embarrassment for the controversial dean and is another sign that the Archbishop is unwilling to advance the liberal cause.
But the Rev Paul Dawson, spokesman for Reform, the conservative evangelical group, said: “It’s appropriate that he shouldn’t be a bishop until he publicly changes his mind about what he teaches. “But this issue won’t go away, whether it’s Jeffrey John or someone else. We know that, and we will continue to encourage those electing bishops to choose those who are willing to uphold the teaching of the Bible and the doctrine of the Church of England.”
The name selected by the Commission for the next Bishop of Southwark will be forwarded to the Prime Minister before being rubber-stamped by the Queen. It is not expected to be announced until the autumn.
The new frontier: 'Covering' conservatives
By Jonah Goldberg
There has been a lot of news in the last week or so: the resignation of Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the death of Sen. Robert Byrd, the oil spill off the Gulf Coast, the Elena Kagan confirmation hearings, the cratering economy and stock market, even the World Cup. But for a few days at the end of June, Beltway pundits were consumed with the ballad of David Weigel, a blogger for The Washington Post, briefly assigned to cover the "conservative beat."
And just what is the conservative beat?
Well, according to many of the nation's leading editors, it's that shadowy, often-sinister world where carbon based-life forms of a generally humanoid appearance say and do things relating to, and supportive of, conservative causes and the Republican Party. These strange creatures have been observed using complex tools, caring and nurturing their young and even participating in complex social rituals. Most worship an unseen sky god that traces its roots back to the ancient Middle East. Even more astounding, these creatures are having a noticeable impact on American politics.
And that is why many of our leading journalistic enterprises have found it worthwhile to assign full-time reporters to the task of spelunking through the dark caves of conservatism to better understand these fascinating, if vaguely worrisome, beings.
The 'party of Mordor'
As for Weigel, though he officially resigned from the Post, theories still abound about whether he really jumped from his perch there or was pushed. Either way, the reason he had to go stemmed from comments he made in an off-the-record online chat group for liberal journalists. He said he hoped that Internet phenom Matt Drudge would "set himself on fire" and that Rush Limbaugh should drop dead.
Conservatives, according to Weigel, are obsessed with protecting "white privilege" and are bigots for opposing gay marriage. The GOP is the "party of Mordor" and, if left unchecked, will one day deliver the West into the hands of Sauron. (Not really, but if you read between the lines, it's in there.) Note: Weigel's actual work product was far more balanced and seemingly open-minded than what you'd expect knowing his private views.
The incident has sparked a lot of discussion over how mainstream journalistic institutions such as The Washington Post and The New York Times should cover conservatives. Even if you leave aside the ancient arguments about media bias, this is still an old debate. In 2004, the Times assigned a reporter to cover conservatives full-time in order to better inform their readers and staff how the conservative movement works.
"We wanted to understand them," explained editor Bill Keller. The Times' ombudsman later observed that the "decision not to create a liberal beat, it seems to me, reflected the reality that the Times' coverage of liberals had no gaps similar to those in its reporting on the conservative movement." Translation: The Times is staffed almost entirely by liberals and their news judgment flows directly from that fact.
Many mainstream news outlets have been caught flat-footed on some major stories in recent years precisely because of this attitude.
For instance, Van Jones, the White House "green jobs czar," was brought down by controversies that went ignored by most leading news outlets but were widely covered by (the hugely successful) Fox News and the thriving conservative press. It seems at times that if conservatives consider something big news, the editors at such places as the Times and the Post must first conduct an anthropological analysis: Why are these right-wing natives so upset?
It's difficult to exaggerate how bizarre this predicament is. In America, self-identified conservatives outnumber self-identified liberals by 2 to 1. And yet many of our leading journalistic bastions have found themselves stuck in something akin to media monasteries with a Fort Apache complex.
Now The Washington Post is scrambling to figure out how to cover conservatives. Part of the reason the Post looks so lost is that it seems apparent that it thought it was hiring a conservative to cover conservatives when Weigel was more like a libertarian-leaning liberal with a good conservative phrase book and a dashing right-wing pith helmet. A registered Republican, Weigel nonetheless voted for Barack Obama, John Kerry and Ralph Nader for president. Meanwhile, left-wing groups who find the news media insufficiently liberal are now clamoring for their own reporters to cover the "liberal beat."
Lefty, meet righty
What a strange hot mess the press has gotten itself into. And there are no easy answers about how to clean it up. One solution, offered by The Washington Examiner's Byron York: Hire a lot more openly ideologically committed — and fair-minded — reporters, but with one caveat: Have the conservatives cover the liberal beat and the liberals cover the conservatives. York rightly notes that a little ideological distance tends to temper the cheerleading. It's a good idea.
But here's some even simpler advice for liberal editors unwilling to break out of the bunker: Just try to keep in mind that these strange alien creatures are also potential customers. [Something Rupert Murdoch realizes -- to his great advantage -- JR]
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
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