Diocesan Life for June 2011
Lift up the stories of women, sexual minorities, and non-white people

newSpin 110523

The newSpin newsletter, May 23, 2011
By Bill Lewellis
Published Mondays and Thursdays

• Pray for the people of Joplin, Missouri ... [LATimes and NYTimes] A powerful tornado slammed into Joplin, Mo., on Sunday, killing at least 89 people as it ripped the top off a hospital, sheared parts of the roof off a high school and turned homes and major retail stores into heaps of rubble. More here and here.
• Renewal Assembly II ...  June 11 (9:00 to 1:30) at eight locations across the Diocese. More here and on pages A1 & 8 of the June Diocesan Life. Register here. Registration will close on June 1. A new 18-minute video will feature Bishop Paul in conversation with three lay people: Lucy Kitch-Peck on the Gifts of the Spirit in her life; Liza Holzinger of St. Andrew's Allentown on a Congregation detecting the gifts and opportunities the Spirit gives parishes; Warren Shotto of Good Shepherd Scranton on how parish leadership detects the gifts in individuals and calls them forth.
• Easter and Fenway Park ... [Bishop Paul] Believe in miracles ... Believe in next year, and the next and the next. Below, under DioSpin.
• Social Ministries now accepting grant requests for disbursements from the New Hope Campaign ... Below, under DioSpin.
• Speaking up for the poor ... Below, under TaleSpin.

"DioSpin" has replaced the former "Diocese"
• Diocesan Life, June
... Read or download it here.
• Easter and Fenway Park ... [Bishop Paul] I don’t have the patience or devotion to be a good baseball fan, but for the last 15 years I have worked in an office where baseball
is taken very seriously, religiously perhaps. I have observed two things about baseball fans that I admire very much. First, they believe in miracles. In fact they have seen them and wait for the next one regularly. Second – so important for our troubled culture – they believe in next year. Read it all on page A2 of the June Diocesan Life.
• Social Ministries now accepting grant requests ... The Social Ministries Committee is now ready to receive and consider requests for disbursements from the New Hope Campaign.  The total amount we are able to grant for the 2011-12 calendar year is $100,000.  Therefore, we are inviting Letters of Intent from parishes and Episcopal related organizations within the Episcopal Diocese of Bethlehem.  The Deadline for Letters of Intent is 15 July 2011. More here.
• Renewal Assembly II, Saturday June 11 ...  Above, under TopSpin.
• Jubilate ... Hymnody for Pentecost to Christ the King Sunday (June 12, 2011 to November 30, 2011), published by the Diocese of Bethlehem for our diocesan community and for free distribution to the world, may be downloaded here.
• Cathedral Church of the Nativity ... [Weekly notes] May 20.
• The Good Shepherd and 'Functioning Up' ... Archdeacon Stringfellow sermon, Easter 4A, at Good Shepherd Scranton. Here.
• The Deadline of Mortality –– Not Today ... This column by Bill Lewellis was published in The Morning Call on Saturday. Would you rather have lunch with Harold Camping or Christopher Hitchens?
• Heaven comes to earth, one vision at a time ... This sermon was preached at Trinity Easton on Saturday, May 21, by Canon Andrew Gerns.

• Bishop's School, Fall Semester ... The site has been moved from St. Peter's Hazleton to St. Stephen's Wilkes-Barre. More.
• Episcopal News Weekly bulletin inserts ... Download inserts here.
• DioBeth Website and newSpin Blog
• Public news and info lists ... At the Diobeth website, enter your name and email in the "Get Connected" box on the right hand side. You are welcome to subscribe to any or all of these. "Bakery" is our diocesan interactive list.

TaleSpin has replaced the former "Spinning"
• Speaking up for the poor
... [ENS] House of Deputies president Bonnie Anderson says that Episcopalians can be the voice of the poor and the dispossessed in the current federal budget battle. Here. [H/T Andrew Gerns]
• Rethinking the pro-life label ... [CNN Belief Blog, Stephen Prothero] Being consistently pro-life requires more than caring for the unborn; it requires following the Biblical call to care for the poor and the downtrodden. One party has enjoyed a free pass on the religion question. They were the party of God, and a halo of sorts hovered over their public policy positions on "family values." But just how biblical were these positions?  No one really knew, because neither the public nor the press were religiously literate enough to ask. More here.
• Majority of Americans favor same-sex marriage ... [Gallup] For the first time in Gallup's tracking of the issue, a majority of Americans (53%) believe same-sex marriage should be recognized by the law as valid, with the same rights as traditional marriages. The increase since last year came exclusively among political independents and Democrats. Republicans' views did not change. More here.
• The Mormon Moment ... [Religion Link] Romney, Huntsman, Reid, and Beck. In the entertainment world the irreverent and even irreligious musical The Book of Mormon has taken Broadway by storm, and the HBO series Big Love just ended after five seasons of critical acclaim. And Stephenie Meyer, author of the hugely popular Twilight series of vampire stories, is a Mormon housewife-turned-novelist. Little wonder some are calling this “the Mormon moment.” Has the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gone as mainstream as Catholicism and Judaism – they also had to overcome historical prejudices? More here.
• No offense ... The cover of TIME (May 30) is "Sex. Lies. Arrogance. What Makes Powerful Men Act Like Pigs* –– The asterisk is picked up on the bottom right to the left of a lovable pig. Read the cover story here.
• Ministry is a marathon, not a sprint ... [Alban Institute] Here.
• Finding $45,000 in attic of new home, returning it ... [Huffington Post] Here. [H/T Andrew Gerns]
• Forgiving her son's killer: 'Not an easy thing' ... [NPR] It would be easy -- expected, even -- for Mary Johnson and Oshea Israel to be enemies. After all, he killed Johnson's only son, in 1993. He went to prison for that -- and toward the end of his sentence, he and Johnson made peace. Now 34, Oshea finished serving his prison sentence for murder about a year and a half ago. Recently, he and Johnson visited NPR's StoryCorps to discuss their relationship -- and the forgiveness it is built upon. More here. [H/T Leadership Education at Duke Divinity
• When the Internet thinks it knows you ... [NYTimes Op-Ed] Here.

• Another doomsday prediction doomed ... [Bill] I expected to be among those left behind ... and I am. By strange coincidence, the publication date of my Morning Call column, The Deadline of Mortality – Not Today, written about a week before, was May 21, the impending doomsday and my 74th birthday. Read the column on the newSpin blog or at the website of The Morning Call. Harold Camping since Saturday has been a no show when sought out by the media.
• A fairy story for people afraid of the dark ... [Stephen Hawking] "I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken-down computers. That is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark." [Bill] Should we say that's Stephen Hawking's "opinion" or "belief?" I don't recall his having proven that there is no afterlife.
• Religion and Sex Quiz ... [NYTimes Op-Ed, Nicholas Kristof] Think you know what the Bible says about social issues like abortion and same-sex marriage? Take this quiz and let's see. Here's a clue for one of the questions. "This was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food and posperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy." Ezekiel 16:49

Peggy Noonan on Why We Shouldn't Be Surprised by Newt, Arnold and DSK ...  Peggy Noonan wrote her Friday WSJ column on Newt Gingrich, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. She argues that we probably shouldn't be surprised by their most recent disasters. Everyone knew that Newt was "combustible," that DSK had a "woman problem" and that Arnold has been plagued in the past by bad behavior and a trail of rumors, Noonan says. That's not to say the acts of these men's actions, particularly those of DSK and Schwarzenegger, were not outrageous. Noonan finds plenty to be indignant about, particularly France's overwhelmingly sympathetic reaction to DSK's arrest. But here's her point: "we wouldn't be so surprised if we paid more attention to what we know, and built our expectations from there." More here.
• Zombie Apocalypse
... [CS Monitor/Reuters/CNN] A blog post by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that mentions a ''zombie apocalypse'' as a lighthearted way to get Americans to read about preparing for hurricanes drove so much traffic that it crashed the website, the agency said Thursday. The Zombie Apocalypse campaign is a social media effort by the CDC's Public Health and Preparedness center to spread the word about the June 1 start of hurricane season. The campaign was designed to reach a young, media-savvy demographic that the CDC had not been able to capture previously. More here. CNN story here.

• Coming Out ... [NYTimes, Interactive feature] Bullying and suicides of gay and lesbian teenagers are in the headlines, the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy has been repealed, and the debate over same-sex marriage continues to divide the country. Against this backdrop, many L.G.B.T. youth wonder how accepting society will be. More here.
• A budget without core purposes, taxation without compassion ... [NYTimes, Editorial Observer] The budgetary policy of the United States has been the least generous in the industrial world for a very long time. Here.

• Calendar of Events
... Updated May 2. Download here.

Enchantment Marketing ... Guy Kawasaki, Apple's former chief evangelist. Here.
Three things I learned while my plane crashed ... Here.

• The Diocese of Bethlehem on Twitter
... http://twitter.com/#!/Diobeth

• The Diocese of Bethlehem on Facebook ... https://www.facebook.com/DioceseOfBethlehem
• Kat Lehman on Twitter ... http://twitter.com/#!/KatLehman
• Episcopal News Service on Twitter ...  http://twitter.com/#!/episcopal_news

• June 11, to Renewal Assembly II ... At many locations. See above, under TopSpin.

• July 9, to Called to be Heroes ... Bishop's Day for Kids , grades 1-5, at Church of the Good Shepherd in Scranton. Children in grades 1-5 are invited to spend the day with Bishop Paul, 9:30 to 2:30, and meet some no-so-well-known heroes in the Bible. Discover your own super powers, and enjoy being together. Storytelling, games, Eucharist and more.

• For the people of Joplin, Missouri
... Above, under TopSpin.

• The Daily Office ... with the Mission St. Clare.
• 20+1+1 = Renewal ... Challenge yourself to pray for 20 minutes daily, to worship for one hour weekly, and to serve others for one day a month. Find Mother Laura Howell's blog here.
• For our young men and women who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan, and for their families. Here.

• Pilot program nurtures leadership for Episcopal young adults ... [ENS] Young adults have an opportunity to participate in an innovative pilot program, the Episcopal Leadership Institute for Young Adults, which centers on leadership and advocacy training. More here.
• The Anglican Alliance has launched a Facebook page. Alliance. News release on launch. Facebook page.
• Episcopal Church Women ... eCommuniqué, Easter 2011, here.
• SCLM provides online resource archive
... [Episcopal News Service] The Episcopal Church Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music (SCLM) has created an archive of materials it has collected and generated in its effort to accomplish the mandate given to it by General Convention concerning the blessing of same-gender unions. More here.

• Episcopal Church Website and News Service. Follow the Episcopal News Service on Twitter.

• Douglas Kleintop, 93, died May 19. He was the father of Bishop Douglas Kleintop. Bishop Doug's wife, Rosemary, served on Bishop Paul's staff at Diocesan House a few years ago. Here's the obituary.
• Moravian Church in North America website
  • Moravian Church Northern Province website  • Moravian Theological Seminary website 

Evangelical Lutheran
• ELCA website ... Here
• ELCA News Service ... Here. 
• ELCA's blogs
may be found here. See especially "Web and Multimedia Development."

• NEPA Synod website ... Here. 
• Synod E-News
... May 20. Sign up to receive the weekly newsletter by email here.

United Methodist
• May Communication newsletter ... Here.  • UMC website ... Here• UMC News Service ... Here.  UMC Communication ... The United Methodist Church has long been a leader in providing useful resources for church communicators. Start here.  • Eastern PA Conference of the UMC website ... Here. • Facebook ... Here.  • Bishop Peggy Johnson's blog ... Here.

Roman Catholic
• Voice Lessons ... [America Magazine, Peter Steinfels] When a national conference of Catholic bishops habitually speaks with a common voice, does that undermine the leadership of individual bishops? More here. That's the focus of Steinfels' article, but it seems to me to miss the point of Vatican concern, which is the authority/influence of national conferences of Catholic bishops in relationship to the Vatican. The Vatican has long insisted that individual bishops, not national conferences, have authority. My take on that has long been that Rome can control individual bishops much more easily than national conferences. Perhaps Steinfels will someday write about that.
• Helping Catholic students remain Catholic in a setting of Nietzsche and beer pont
... [NYTimes] Nationwide pilot pogram designed to keep actively Catholic college students actively Catholic. Here.
• Vatican Information Service blog
... Here• United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website ... Here. • Catholic News Service ... Here.  • Diocese of Allentown website ... Here.  • Diocese of Scranton website ... Here.

Additional sources of news/info/commentary
• Religion News Service Daily Roundup
... here.
• Diocese of Bethlehem

(1) The DioBeth newSpin blog
(2) The DioBeth website
(3) Twitter.DioBeth
(4) Twitter.Kat Lehman

(5) Facebook.DioBeth
(6) Public news and info lists: At the Diobeth website, enter your name and email in the "Get Connected" box on the right hand side. You are welcome to subscribe to any or all of these. "Bakery" is our diocesan interactive list.
• Episcopal/Anglican
(1) NewsLine
(2) News & Notices
(3) Infoline
(4) Episcopal News Service
(5) Episcopal Church website
(6) Twitter
(7) Facebook
(8) YouTube
(9) The Lead, Episcopal Cafe
(10) Daily Episcopalian, Episcopal Cafe
(11) AngicansOnline.
(12) AnglicansOnline News Centre.
(13) Anglican Communion website.
(14) Anglican Communion News Service.

• Find earlier issues of the newSpin newsletter here and recent ones in the left column here.

Send info about newSpin to friends you think may be interested
... newSpin is an electronic newsletter that includes news, information and commentary related to the Diocese of Bethlehem, the Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion and the world of religion ... with some spin, of course, from the editor. Edited by retired communication minister Bill Lewellis and ordinarily published twice weekly, on Monday and Thursday, it is currently received by some 1,200 people, many of whom forward it to many others. To have it emailed directly to you, subscribe at the "Get Connected" box on the right column of www.diobeth.org. Select newSpin under the groups. You may find samples of the newSpin newsletter on the left column of the newSpin blog, www.diobeth.typepad.com.

About the newSpin newsletter ... Composed at least weekly (usually twice a week) by Bill Lewellis, the newSpin newsletter appears as a post within the newSpin blog, but newsletter and blog are not identical. The newsletter comes, of course, with some spin from the editor, but the views expressed, implied or inferred in items or links contained in the newsletter or the blog do not represent the official view of the Diocese of Bethlehem unless expressed by or forwarded from the Bishop or the Archdeacon as an official communication. Comments may be addressed to Bill.

Bill Lewellis, Diocese of Bethlehem, retired
Communication MInister (1985-2010), Canon Theologian (1998)
Blog, Email (c)610-393-1833
Be attentive. Be intelligent. Be reasonable. Be responsible.
Be in Love. And, if necessary, change. [Bernard Lonergan]


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