May 9, 2008

IMPORTANT: New location -

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May 8, 2008

And we're back

Blogger had some major problems yesterday and today; some blogs didn't seem to be affected at all, while others (including mine) were completely offline. Thanks to some good advice from Sean Connolly, I reverted to a "classic" template which fixed the problem. In the process, all the custom items on the sidebar were lost, but that's a small price to pay. I think I'll be moving to Wordpress soon, using one of the custom domains I was given - I'll make sure to let you know when that happens. Thanks for reading my humble blog, and thanks to those of you who were kind enough to send me an email alerting me to the problem.

May 7, 2008

Now Hiring

David Strand, who fired Pastor Wilken (and Jeff Schwarz) from KFUO because he claims there wasn't enough money to pay him, is now looking for a replacement. What happened to the financial crisis? Could it be that there were other reasons than the alleged business stewardship reasons?

Also, Mollie Hemingway at Augsburg1530 has more questions about Strand's latest statement. It would appear his answers contain many factual errors.

May 6, 2008

Obama will bring the kingdom of God

So said Rev. Joseph Lowery, campaigning for Barak [middle name censored] Obama in North Carolina. “Tomorrow, we shall achieve the victory, that the kingdom of God may come on earth as it is in heaven, and all those who love the Lord and will vote for Obama, say Amen.” You can read all about it at National Review.

"I feel the earth | move | under my feet"

Frantically grading some Latin tests before my 1:40 class this afternoon, I heard a strange rumbling sound, and felt the floor of my office vibrate ominously. I've worked in this office seven years and never heard or felt anything remotely like it. It turns out it was an EARTHQUAKE. In Virginia. Well, the Washington Post is calling it a "micro-quake," but I'm in a mood to sensationalize. Hmmm - the Epistle read in traditional churches this past Sunday said, "The end of all things is at hand" - now why couldn't this have happened right when I was starting my sermon?

May 5, 2008

"Irreversible" vegetative states

I am not at all convinced that physicians always know when death is near, or when a condition is "irreversible." This story reminded me of the Terry Schiavo murder a few years ago. Here's the summary:

Last winter, just as the state’s highest court was about to rule that a girl in an "irreversible vegetative state" should be removed from life support, 14-year-old Haleigh Poutre started to breathe on her own.

May 3, 2008

Mortal and venial sin

Pr. Petersen was kind enough to link to my post of Chrysostom's statement regarding Adultery and Fidelity. What you may be interested in is the helpful discussion there in the comments regarding mortal and venial sin.

"Issues" Q&A under the microscope

The website "Save the LCMS!" has published a four-part series analyzing the "Q&A" document published by David Strand regarding the "Issues, Etc." cancelation and his firing of a pastor and the show's producer. Here is the summary:

1.  Finances were the only reason that can be discussed in public for the cancellation of Issues, Etc. and the terminations of Todd Wilken and Jeff Schwarz.  There were a "number of other factors" which cannot be discussed in public.

2.  Mr. David Strand is solely responsible for the decision with the knowledge and approval of BCS Chairman Clauss, (and by his own statement, Pres. Kieschnick), to the exclusion of the BCS, the Board of Directors, and the officers of the Synod, including Mr. Thomas Kuchta.

3.  Responsibility for the show's deficit and its share of KFUO-AM's deficit rests with Todd Wilken and Jeff Schwarz, who were called upon to be self-supporting and yet were denied the opportunity to raise money independently.

4.  The secrecy surrounding the decision is solely the result of Human Resources' employee confidentiality policy.

5.  Responsibility for the ensuing controversy rests with unreasonable critics who unexpectedly exploited the scandal to attack the Synod and criticize the Kieschnick administration and its Ablaze! program.

6.  Cancellation of the show during Holy Week, though regrettable, saved $5500.

7.  The abruptness of the cancellation and terminations was the result of Human Resources policy and a financial exigency (extreme emergency) at KFUO-AM.

You can read the entire series here:

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Part Four

A good marriage

From St. John Chrysostom:

A good marriage is like a spiritual castle. When husband and wife truly love and respect each other, no one can overcome them. If a man is unmarried and is attacked with lies and slander, his confidence and self-esteem may crumble; he may even begin to believe the lies said against him. But if he has a loving wife, she would reassure him with the truth, and so uphold his spirit. If a woman is single and is the subject of vicious gossip, she may feel that her reputation is being cut to shreds. But if she had a loving husband, his faith in her goodness and honesty would both comfort her and also impress those who doubted her.

Similarly, a good marriage is like a buttress when a person's religious faith is shaken. Single people who are beset by religious doubts may feel that the house of god is collapsing around them, and that they are helpless to prevent it. But married people can turn to their spouse to express those doubts; and it is almost certain that the spouse's faith is sufficiently solid to allay those doubts. In the providence of God, when a husband is spiritually weak, his wife is spiritually strong; when a wife is weak, the husband is strong.

May 2, 2008

Adultery and fidelity

From St. John Chrysostom:

What shall we say about adultery? Let us ask an adulterer why he commits this sin. "It is the tyranny of lust," he replies. "Why," we ask, "are you under this tyranny? Why could you not satisfy your sexual desire through intercourse with your spouse?" The adulterer replies: "I am consumed with passion for someone else's spouse." Yet this very reply reveals the contradiction in which the adulterer places himself. If it is a physical lust which impels him, then he could resist that lust; no physical desire is stronger than the power of the soul to resist it. If it is a loving passion which impels him, then he should be repelled by the very thought of adultery: a truly loving man could not indulge his love for someone else's wife at the expense of his own wife. Besides, love can never force someone to do anything: love is gentle, not violent, even when it is passionate. Sexual desire is a very powerful craving which even a life of celibacy does not suppress. But adultery is always a matter of choice; no amount of lust, and no passion of love, can overwhelm a person's capacity to choose between fidelity and betrayal.