New web address for this blog!

There are no more updates to this site - please continue to follow us at our new address: http://www.prayct.org

Monday, November 03, 2008

New address for our blog!

We are in the process of combining this blog and our main site into one new site: to read future and many older posts, from now on please visit:

http://www.prayct.org

And thanks for your support here since 2005!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

New PrayCT website coming!

We ask your patience as we will be rolling out a new website shortly. You may experience some unavailability both here and at www.prayct.org. Thanks!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Does a pro-life stand matter?


Buster Brown and the baby

Does a pro-life stand matter, or will more modern approaches reduce the number of abortions more? Apart from the moral issues raised by the government's condoning of child murder, consider this quote from an interesting article by Michael J. New:

As Election Day approaches, the mainstream media is, as usual, showcasing self-identified ''pro-lifers'' who are supporting the Democratic Party's pro-abortion presidential nominee. In 2004, a number of media outlets cited an analysis by ethicist Glen Harold Stassen which claimed--wrongly--that the number of abortions had increased slightly since President Bush's inauguration in 2001. The New York Times published an op-ed by Dean Mark Roche of Notre Dame encouraging pro-life Catholics to vote for John Kerry. This year the story is similar. Former Reagan administration Assistant Attorney General Doug Kmiec and Duquesne University Law Professor Nicholas Cafardi, both of whom claim to be opponents of abortion, have received plenty of media attention for their support of Barack Obama.

Their arguments are the same ones put forward in 2004. They have not improved with age. Most of these authors attempt to make one of two points: either a) that there is little that elected officials can do to curb abortion through legislation, or b) that the pro-life movement has not reaped any real benefits from supporting candidates who oppose abortion. Voters should, therefore, they argue, place greater emphasis on other issues. However, an examination of the history of the pro-life movement and a careful analysis of abortion trends demonstrate that these arguments are deeply flawed. In fact, the success of pro-life political candidates has resulted in substantial reductions in the abortion rate.

For instance, the 1990s decline in the abortion rate--a decline that is eagerly touted by these Obama and Kerry supporters--had virtually nothing to do with policies enacted by President Clinton, and much to do with the dramatic increase in the number of states that were enacting pro-life laws. The information below comes from NARAL's Who Decides, an annual publication which provides information about abortion legislation:

- In 1992, virtually no states were enforcing informed-consent laws; by 2000, 27 states had informed-consent laws in effect.

- In 1992, no states had banned or restricted partial-birth abortion; by 2000, twelve states had bans or restrictions in effect.

- In 1992, only 20 states were enforcing parental-involvement statutes; by 2000, 32 states were enforcing these laws.

Furthermore, there is plenty of evidence which suggests that these and other types of pro-life legislation have been effective at reducing the incidence of abortion.


Read the whole thing here.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Connecticut Church Map back in operation

Our world famous church map (I exaggerate slightly) was temporarily offline but is now back in action and humming along. Sorry for any inconvenience. Check it out here if you've never done so and if you'd like to suggest a church for inclusion, drop me a line here. Thanks!

Prayer Vigil on Sunday, November 2



Connecticut House of Prayer announces that there will be a prayer meeting and candlelight vigil for the elections on Sunday, November 2.

From 4-6 PM there will be prayer at Wellspring Church with worship and open prayer.

There will then be a candlelight vigil on the front lawn of the State Capitol with Peter Wolfgang of the Family Institute of Connecticut at 6:30 PM for a candlelight vigil.

Please join CHOP in praying for these crucial elections.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Siloam playing in Danbury this evening



Siloam and guest Jonathan Mellett will be playing tonight at Community Coffeehouse in Danbury. Doors open at 7:00 PM, concert starts at 7:30. At intermission there is free food and drinks. Admission is free, a $5-10 donation is suggested. The Community Coffeehouse is located at 7 Madison Avenue in Danbury, CT. For more info go to www.1heartonline.org or call (203) 748-4972.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Rock the Sound IV coming up on November 15!

It's the Northeast's biggest night of Christian music!

Rock The Sound IV features Newsboys, David Crowder Band, Skillet, Leeland and Nevertheless all in one evening. The fourth edition of RTS will be held on Saturday, November 15, 2008 at 6:00 PM at the Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, CT.

This year's featured charity is Love 146. Love 146 is an organization dedicated to stop the trafficking of human beings.

For tickets and more details, please visit RockTheSound.com.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Greenwich Church celebrates 25th with special services


Pastor Jackson Senyonga of Kampala, Uganda

Harvest Time Church in Greenwich, CT is hosting a series of special services this week to celebrate its 25th Anniversary. Among the evening speakers are:

October 15: Jackson Senyonga
Founder and pastor of Christian Life Church in Uganda, with 40,000 members. Jackson delivers an unforgettable message and his ministry has planted 600 churches in Africa. He is featured in the Transformations II video.

October 16: Jan Nel
Jan is the founder of TEEM.Net, an apostolic network of ministries in South Africa, Australia, and the U.S. He is a true teaching father and prophetic trainer in the Body of Christ.

October 17: Raymond Mooi
Raymond is the founder of the School of Acts, a ministry training center with branches in Malaysia, the Phillipines, and Indonesia. he travels extensively throughout Southeast Asia conducting mass healing and evangelistic campaigns in closed nations.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Choose life - and vote life!

We're not Catholic but I thought this video from CatholicVote.com was outstanding. Please see also the quotes on abortion below attributed to Mother Teresa.



"America needs no words from me to see how your decision in Roe v. Wade has deformed a great nation. The so-called right to abortion has pitted mothers against their children and women against men. It has sown violence and discord at the heart of the most intimate human relationships. It has aggravated the derogation of the father's role in an increasingly fatherless society. It has portrayed the greatest of gifts -- a child -- as a competitor, an intrusion, and an inconvenience. It has nominally accorded mothers unfettered dominion over the independent lives of their physically dependent sons and daughters.

And, in granting this unconscionable power, it has exposed many women to unjust and selfish demands from their husbands or other sexual partners. Human rights are not a privilege conferred by government. They are every human being's entitlement by virtue of his humanity. The right to life does not depend, and must not be declared to be contingent, on the pleasure of anyone else, not even a parent or a sovereign."

(Mother Theresa -- "Notable and Quotable," Wall Street Journal, 2/25/94, p. A14)

"But I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child - a direct killing of the innocent child - murder by the mother herself. And if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another? How do we persuade a woman not to have an abortion? As always, we must persuade her with love, and we remind ourselves that love means to be willing to give until it hurts. Jesus gave even his life to love us. So the mother who is thinking of abortion, should be helped to love - that is, to give until it hurts her plans, or her free time, to respect the life of her child. The father of that child, whoever he is, must also give until it hurts. By abortion, the mother does not learn to love, but kills even her own child to solve her problems. And by abortion, the father is told that he does not have to take any responsibility at all for the child he has brought into the world. That father is likely to put other women into the same trouble. So abortion just leads to more abortion. Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching the people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want. That is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion."

"Please don't kill the child. I want the child. Please give me the child. I am willing to accept any child who would be aborted, and to give that child to a married couple who will love the child, and be loved by the child. From our children's home in Calcutta alone, we have saved over 3,000 children from abortions. These children have brought such love and joy to their adopting parents, and have grown up so full of love and joy!"

"What is taking place in America is a war against the child. And if we accept that the mother can kill her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another."

"Any country that accepts abortion, is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what it wants."

"It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish."

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Dr. Dobson weighs in on Connecticut gay marriage

Connecticut has captured what little market there is in the news for anything other than the global economic meltdown. Dr. James Dobson is chiming in:

“Today’s ruling by the Connecticut Supreme Court to impose same-sex 'marriage' adds another tragic example of runaway judges trampling on citizens’ right to decide public policy for themselves. In doing so, the court has placed the desires of adults over the needs of children, who, social science research proves, do best when they are raised by their married mom and dad living in the same home.

“We decry this decision by justices unelected and unaccountable to the people, and will do whatever is necessary to oppose it. Not only have these judges knowingly deprived Connecticut children of a mother or a father, but they have usurped the role of the legislators to create law. Short of a federal marriage-protection amendment, marriage can only be truly protected by defining it in state constitutions. I pray the citizens of California, Arizona and Florida will seize the opportunity next month to settle this marriage crisis in their states once and for all.”

Friday, October 10, 2008

Gay Marriage Comes to Connecticut



It has happened. The Supreme Court of Connecticut has issued its long-awaited decision in the Kerrigan case, and has effectively legalized homosexual marriage by judicial decree.

I haven't read the decision yet, but you can download a copy here (large PDF file).

As a recovering lawyer I will give you my analysis at some point FWIW.

There are several dissenting opinions:


Kudos to Justice Zarella, who bravely stated:
The ancient definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman has its basis in biology, not bigotry. If the state no longer has an interest in the regulation of procreation, then that is a decision for the legislature or the people of the state and not this court. Therefore, I conclude that the equal protection provisions of the state constitution are not triggered. I further conclude that there is no fundamental right to same sex marriage. Accordingly, I dissent.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The Town of 1000 Realtors(R) hits hard times

Not even Greenwich is safe from the economic tsunami. Connecticut's balance sheet gets whacked, too, as we've pointed out previously.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Was Jesus a Palestinian?

Umm, no. But some textbooks seem to think so:

This is one of hundreds of distortions, misrepresentations and outright lies found about Judaism and Jewish history by a comprehensive study of the 28 most widely used Social Studies textbooks in the United States. In a landmark book called “The Trouble with Textbooks,” Dr. Gary A. Tobin and Dennis R. Ybarra show how millions of American schoolchildren are taught anti-Semitic versions of Jewish history and faith, particularly in relation to Christianity and Islam, in passages that often amount to sheer libel.


There is an incredible lack of critical thinking already. This kind of thing certainly won't help.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Columnists starting to sound like preachers...

And, who can blame them?

Ultimately, however, we must address the deeper roots of this financial crisis. There is a moral crisis that infects every aspect of our society. Since the 1960s, American popular culture has waged a relentless war against ethical absolutes and Judeo-Christian morality. This has been replaced with a shallow secular humanism, which champions materialism, consumerism and individual gratification. In short, our culture has done everything to destroy what used to be called "character." What happened to individual restraint, thrift and personal responsibility? These are the virtues that built the most impressive capitalist economy the world has ever created.

We are now facing more than just a financial mess; almost every other major institution is under threat. The political system is adrift; public schools are failing; the borders are porous; the intelligence agencies are dysfunctional; the inner cities are infested with drugs and gangs; the family is broken; and millions are fleeing their churches.


And they say I'm dour sometimes! More here from Jeffery Kuhner at the Washington Times.

The reality of the foreclosure wave: the "trashout"

Watch this absolutely shocking video about what is really happening in California. To what extent is this happening in other places or spreading? It seems that the American middle class is being gutted and filleted like a fish.

Watching this video will improve your prayer life.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

What happens when same-sex marriage is permitted?

Think it can't affect you or affect many different spheres in society? Think again! Watch this video which is being used to rally people to the pro-family cause in California. You will be alarmed at what happened in Massachusetts when same-sex "marriage" was legalized there. As we await the Connecticut's Supreme Court decision in the Kerrigan case, please keep praying earnestly for our State.

Be sure to use the video menu to email it to others who care about our State and our children.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Courant notices that Dodd received $13M from finance sector contributions

Much of the nation is reviling Senator Dodd, and the Courant has noticed, in an article dated September 29:

"At the end of my tenure on this committee," Dodd said in early 2007, "I want it to be said that the safety and soundness of our financial institutions was not weakened on my watch."

A year and a half later, Dodd acknowledges that the nation's finances are in an "economic maelstrom." And while Washington engages in an urgent search for after-the-fact fixes, there is also plenty of finger-pointing, and there are enduring questions about whether campaign cash — millions and millions in campaign cash — blinded Dodd and other overseers to the excesses of industry.

Financial-sector firms — mortgage firms, insurance companies, accountants, brokerage houses, hedge funds — are among the most generous political donors in America, lavishing more than $1 billion on candidates this decade. And in Congress, few politicians have fared better than Dodd. During the past 20 years, PACs and employees of finance-related firms have contributed more than $13 million to Dodd's election efforts, including nearly $6 million in the past two years. Among members of Congress, only leading presidential candidates — Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John McCain and John Kerry — have collected more money from the sector.

Read more here
.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Call to Repentance

shofar

This is Rosh HaShanah or, more biblically, Yom Teruah, the Feast of Trumpets. This is a day commonly celebrated as the Jewish New Year and begins a period of ten days of introspection and repentance known as the Ten Days of Awe. What better time to seek the Lord in repentance?

America is undergoing a shaking not seen since 1929, when the very foundations of our system were shaken. Only the massive spending and industrial production of World War II began to pull us out of the Great Depression.

How much are we going to suffer from our decades of overspending and living beyond our means?

Let us return to the Lord!

Flickr photo believed public domain, courtesy Library of Congress.

Monday, September 29, 2008

This just in: Connecticut property taxes are really high!



I haven't been able to pull down the actual report yet, but WTNH is reporting that we pay twice the national average in property taxes:

Connecticut residents pay an average of $2,042 per year on homes, businesses and vehicles, compared to the national average of $1,123.

Pro-family rally draws large crowd; largely ignored

We know the global financial markets are imploding, but there is a relative news blackout concerning the large rally in Hartford yesterday which, even by the Courant's admission, drew 2,800 people.

In its story, the Courant focused on "progressive" (left-wing) groups who, like the Family Institute of Connecticut, are also seeking a Constitutional Convention.

The only other mention of the rally and the small counter-rally was on the Connecticut News Junkie site, which, to its credit, gave a fairly equal amount of space to both sides - although we would argue that such articles invariably serve as another platform for those promoting the smearing and jettisoning of traditional values.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Anglican leader accepts visions at Lourdes


Flickr photo of Rowan Williams under cc-by-sa-2.0.

I don't shock easily, especially these days, but the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, has succeeded in startling me:

He asserted that 18 visions of Our Lady allegedly experienced by Bernadette Soubirous in 1858 were true.

His words shocked millions of Protestants worldwide because they not only signified a break with Protestant teaching on the Virgin Mary but also Dr Williams’s personal acceptance of the Catholic doctrine of the Immaculate Conception, which is explicitly linked to the apparitions.

The archbishop made his remarks during a three-day visit to the shrine in the French Pyrenees - the first ever by a leader of the Church of England.

In a homily he preached at an international Mass there, Dr Williams spoke about the apparitions without any qualifications.

‘When Mary came to Bernadette, she came at first as an anonymous figure, a beautiful lady, a mysterious “thing”, not yet identified as the Lord’s spotless mother,” Dr Williams said.

‘And Bernadette – uneducated, uninstructed in doctrine – leapt with joy, recognising that here was life, here was healing,’ he said.

‘Only bit by bit does Bernadette find the words to let the world know; only bit by bit, we might say, does she discover how to listen to the Lady and echo what she has to tell us.’


Read the whole thing here.

Smokescreens

To see a true smokescreen, witness this comparison by Rick Green of:

Connecticut pro-family leaders who don't wish to have same-sex marriage imposed upon us by judicial fiat... with:

Racist Southerners opposed to the Voting Rights Act.

Mr. Green apparently believes that, in both cases, it would be simply be too dangerous to allow the "people" to have any input on the matter. What confusion. Mr. Green is either fabricating completely (in hope that the citizenry has been totally dumbed-down), or else he has himself completely failed to understand his own argument.

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 (misnamed by Mr. Green) was Federal legislation designed to secure valid, already existing Constitutional rights. We the People obviously had input in the process through our elected representatives. (Republicans in the U. S. Senate voted for it 30-1, by the way.)

In our current context, Peter Wolfgang of the Family Institute of Connecticut was absolutely correct when he said:

Our opponents don’t want the people to be heard on this because in some 40 or so states where the people were allowed to vote on it, the pro same-sex “marriage” side lost (and they usually lost by a lot).

No, our opponents would rather have the CT Supreme Court impose same-sex “marriage” by undemocratic fiat–something that may happen any day now–because it’s the only way they can win.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Church added to Connecticut Church Map

We've added a new church to the Connecticut Church Map. Not really a "new" church, but one that's been in the news for a number of years for standing for the truth of orthodox Christian belief:
Bishop Seabury Church, in Groton.

We thank God for this church and its leadership under Rev. Ron Gauss. He is a remarkable individual and I would encourage you to read this profile at Virtue Online.

Connecticut budget woes coming

Says Mrs. Rell:

Rell's budget office estimated Monday that state's budget deficit for the current fiscal year will be about $300 million, more than double previous estimates. Rell said much of that projected red ink is due to falling state revenues, especially from the income and sales taxes and the state's share of the slot machine take at Connecticut's tribal casinos.

The estimate does not account for any fallout from the recent large fluctuations on Wall Street, she said.


Of course, those "fluctuations" will likely hurt us, given how much of our State's income depends on a relatively few people having big capital gains, mostly in Greenwich, as the Courant recently pointed out:

As the good times rolled in recent years, the state budget became increasingly dependent on Greenwich. Despite having only about 60,000 people, the town contributed nearly $600 million in state income taxes in 2006 — more than three times the income taxes paid by the combined populations of Hartford, Bridgeport, New Haven and Waterbury. With only 1.8 percent of tax filers, Greenwich provides nearly 13 percent of all state income tax, helping to pay for schools in West Hartford and road repairs in Rockville, not to mention every other cost related to running the state.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Critical rally for marriage this Sunday, September 28th

wedding rings

This Sunday, September 28th at 2:30 p.m. the Family Institute of Connecticut will hold a Rally for Marriage on the steps of the state Capitol in Hartford. FIC says:

This will be Connecticut's most important marriage protection event yet—but it may not succeed unless thousands of people like you turn out to make their voice heard!

Bishop Jeremiah Torres of the House of Restoration Church, Pastor Brian Simmons of Gateway Christian Fellowship, "CT 6" Pastor Christopher Leighton, Rabbi Joshua Hecht of Beth Israel Synagogue, Fr. Greg Markey of St. Mary's Church in Norwalk and other major clergy and politicians will join FIC executive director Peter Wolfgang to speak in defense of marriage and the right to Let the People Decide at the Rally. Parking will be available at The Legislative Office Building Parking Garage, Elm St, Market St and the Bushnell Parking Lot....

News of a "counter-rally" has raised the stakes for the Rally for Marriage. In order for our Rally to be a success, we must turn out substantially more people than our opposition. Please ask your pastor, priest or rabbi to rally fellow believers to attend the September 28th Rally for Marriage. Please arrange to have a bus leave from your church following Sunday services. The success of the rally depends on turnout, and turning out thousands for marriage protection will not happen unless Connecticut's churches are willing to take a stand. Your willingness to organize your church to attend the rally could make the difference between failure and success. The stakes are that high! For more information, contact FIC at 860-548-0066 and ask for Larry....

"See You At The Pole" across the USA tomorrow!

see you at the pole

“CONNECT: Speak, for your servant is listening.” (1 Samuel 3:10) is the theme for See You at the Pole this year, with the event scheduled for Wednesday, September 24 at schools throughout the United States and in many other countries.

In 2007, more than 2 million teenagers met for See You at the Pole in all 50 states. Reports also came in from countries around the world. Other countries have launched SYATP movements with their own promotional efforts, including Australia (where it was observed this year on May 22; see stories at www.syatpaustralia.com) and Canada (on the same date as U.S.; www.syatpcanada.com).

See You at the Pole is a student-initiated and student-led movement that started in the Ft. Worth suburb of Burleson, Texas, in 1990. SYATP brings students to their school flagpoles to intercede for their leaders, schools, and families, asking God to bring moral and spiritual awakening to their campuses and countries.

The San Diego-based National Network of Youth Ministries coordinates SYATP promotion. Paul Fleischmann, president of the Network, observed: “Every year, we have seen this day serve as a springboard for unity among teenagers on their campuses. See You at the Pole unites students in prayer at the beginning of the semester. Young people have taken unprecedented leadership through this to have a positive impact at their schools.”

For more information about See You at the Pole and local event leaders, visit the See You at the Pole web site, www.syatp.com.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Move of the Holy Spirit in Salem, Massachusetts

I've just become aware of a move in Salem, Mass. with claimed healings. Meetings are being held at Wesley United Methodist Church, 8 North Street in Salem. Services are also being webcast at: http://www.praytv.org/

We pray that God's revival fire will sweep across New England this year!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Praying for mercy

Amid the reports of increased church unity and hints of revival comes a barrage of disaster news from across the U. S. If it isn't floods, it's tornadoes, record heat or June snowstorms - there seems to be something of this sort happening on a daily basis. To say nothing of $5 a gallon gas staring us in the face and the phasing out of the American economic dominance we have experienced since 1945.

Our forebears would have wondered if we were praying "aright." Should we be crying out for God's mercies on our nation?

Monday, June 09, 2008

Change is good. Sometimes.

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, author of Love and Economics:It Takes a Family to Raise a Village, will not buy into the hoopla concerning same-sex marriages:

Advocates of same-sex “marriage” insist that theirs is a modest reform: a mere expansion of marriage to include people currently excluded. But the price of same-sex “marriage” is a reduction in tolerance for everyone else, and an expansion of the power of the state.


Read the rest here.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Thank God for America



Yesterday was D-Day, a day which is receding into the background of our public life and our private memory. Some 2,500 American soldiers paid the ultimate price to begin the last chapter in the story of Hitler's defeat. It's also a day we need to hold on to in a world that still demands sacrifice - not the hundred trendy calls to action which are thrown at us these days and which I suspect, ultimately, are only meant to enslave us while making us feel noble.

In my mind's eye I can still see the World War II vets in the parades of my boyhood. They were only in their late forties then and seemed so full of good cheer, still able to march along with the Cub Scouts and the Little League teams. For them, every parade and gazebo celebration was a chance to laugh and remind each other that they had survived and had gotten a chance to build something other than a defensive perimeter.

This video is a parody of how the D-Day landings might be covered today. It tells you everything you need to know about where we have arrived.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Hartford hit and run shocks state, nation



Police Chief Roberts says it well, "Our moral values have changed."

Please pray for this accident victim.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Haitian Health Foundation Benefit, July 11

Haitian Health Foundation
Click to enlarge

Come out for an exciting evening of Contemporary Christian Music performed by three talented bands and a chance to help the Haitian Health Foundation (HHF) battle the current food crisis in Jeremie, Haiti. All tax deductible donations and proceeds from this event will be donated to the Haitian Health Foundation of Norwich, CT for the Emergency Food Crisis Fund.

This event will be held at St. Bernard High School, Uncasville, CT, from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM on July 11, 2008.

Tickets will also be sold at the Gate; Adults: $10.00; Ages 12-18: $8.00; Children under 12: Free. Advance Tickets may be purchased by sending check made payable to the Haitian Health Foundation to: Benefit Concert C/O Leone, 18 Judd Brook Road, Colchester, CT 06415. Pre-paid Tickets will be ready for pick up on the night of the event.

Musical gusts include: Musical Guests: Spiritn3D, PS32, and Roy Dunn-Maclean.

For more information, phone: 860-537-1424.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Revivalist James Levesque in West Haven, May 24, June 1

James Levesque
James Levesque

Revivalist James Levesque will be ministering at Gateway Christian Fellowship in West Haven on May 24 and June 1.

James Levesque ministers powerfully in the prophetic under an open-heaven atmosphere. After a life-changing encounter with God in his teen years, he has operated as an evangelist and a church planter. James has a burning passion to see people step into divine destiny through a mighty move of God. Most recently, he has started Engaging Heaven Ministries, a committed team of radical believers who long to see Christ’s fullness established on the earth. Through crusades, a fresh approach to street ministry, teaching and training, James has a vision to see New England, the nation and the world changed by the power of Jesus Christ.

For more information visit www.engagingheaven.com.

To see or submit Christian events in our area, visit the Connecticut Christian Events Calendar.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

New England Prayer Journey, June 3 - 5

Old Saybrook
Pray for God's glory to touch New England again...

I've received the following notice from the New England Alliance and the Connecticut House of Prayer.

On June 3, 4 and 5th, 2008 there will be a historic Prayer Journey that will cover the six New England States. This Prayer Journey is being sponsored by the New England Alliance, which is a movement of pastors, ministry leaders, and intercessors from a broad spectrum of Christian denominations representing prayer and ministry networks from the six states of New England.

The NE Alliance has been meeting since the summer of 2006 for monthly prayer gatherings and quarterly retreats to seek the Lord together. The group includes a steering committee made up of two representatives from each New England state. Rick McKinniss and I (Barbara Lachance) have been meeting with this group since its inception in 2006.

The NE Alliance beliefs are compatible with the essential teachings of Evangelical, Pentecost/Charismatic, Main Line, and Catholic/Orthodox churches. Our main focus is sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ including upholding traditional marriage and the value of life. The ultimate vision is to trust the Lord to bring about the transformation of our society by a four-part-process of preparation, repentance, agreements to united action, and ongoing transformation

Our intention for this Prayer Journey is to come before the Lord:

To seek revival and awakening

To share the vision of the New England Alliance

To establish connections with state leaders and

To pray together for the Lord to move in each of the New England States

On June 4, at 7:00 PM the Prayer Journey will be arriving at Wellspring Church, 202 Lincoln Street, Kensington, CT. Leaders from the six New England States will be traveling on this Prayer Journey representing their regions and will join with us here in Connecticut. The agenda for the service will be worship, share vision and prayer for revival.

Please prayerfully consider attending this meeting. It is open to all who want to see an Awakening in Connecticut.

Blessings in Christ,

Rick McKinniss
Barbara Lachance

If you can, please participate and seek the Lord's mercies on our region!

Flickr photo of Old Saybrook, CT by Dan Crosley; some rights reserved.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

State Supreme Court allows limits on adult businesses

Some good news on the family front where the Connecticut Supreme Court has upheld the right of the Town of Berlin to regulate so-called adult businesses.

The high court's unanimous ruling comes a month after hearing arguments from attorneys representing the town and VIP, an adult novelty store. The dispute is over the legality of a Berlin ordinance regulating the location of sexually oriented businesses.

At least five other municipalities around the state enacted similar laws, said Berlin lawyer Erika Amarante.

"I'm obviously pleased," Amarante said. "I'm sure those municipalities are happy as well."

Berlin officials contend the ordinance is a way to control the adult businesses that have popped up in recent years. The ordinance bars adult-themed businesses from being within 250 feet of a residentially zoned area.


Give thanks for this good news and let's pray for sanity to make more inroads. More here from the Connecticut Post.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Christian events in Connecticut this week (May 19-25)

Mitch McVicker
Dove Award winner Mitch McVicker in Danbury this Saturday

For more complete information or to submit events, please visit the Connecticut Christian Events calendar.

Monday, May 19
Litchfield County Regional Prayer meeting (Torrington)

Wednesday, May 21
Intercessory Prayer (Colchester)

Friday, May 23

Good Fridays Christian Coffeehouse (Naugatuck)

Saturday, May 24
Tom Conlon @Studio 150 Coffehouse (Wethersfield)

Mitch McVicker @ Community Coffehouse, appearing with Courtney Reid of Maeve (Danbury)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The list of America's 10 favorite books - and what it means

Bible

Let me alleviate the fears of Christians everywhere. The Bible is still ranked as America's Number 1 book. But now that we got that out of the way, what are the Top Ten, and what does this list say about our nation?

According to a Harris Poll, here they are:

1. The Bible
2. Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell
3. Lord of the Rings (series), by J.R.R. Tolkien
4. Harry Potter (series), by J.K. Rowling
5. The Stand, by Stephen King
6. The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown
7. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
8. Angels and Demons, by Dan Brown
9. Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand
10. Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger

My observations:

1. My first observation is that traditional religious belief remains high. Of course, this could be too simplistic by far - perhaps people feel the need to put forward the Bible as their first choice. This is a classic problem in polling: is a certain response what the man really thinks, what he wants you to think, or what he is supposed to think?

2. Americans are increasingly cut off from their past. With the exception of the Bible, of course, no book on the list was written before 1936. This is dangerous in the life of any people - to be so cut off from their past and so to be lacking in any understanding of themselves.

3. What kind of literature is this?

  • Nine out of ten books are fiction.
  • Two and maybe three are "coming of age" stories.
  • Most are fiction of a particular kind: fiction that explores a quest for meaning, often through struggle.
  • Many could be viewed as protests against (or escapes from) the historic Christian order and the traditional roles expected of people in Western society.
  • Several are deliberately aimed at undermining or assume the irrelevance of Christian character. Among those aged 18-31, the Harry Potter series was the most popular work.
I'm not sure this list bodes well for our future. If books 2 through 10 are today's Secular Canon we will never have a confident society but one which will exhaust itself by seeking to reinvent itself with little reference to what has inspired our culture for 3500 years. And to cut ourselves off from what has ennobled our society seems truly foolish.

We still like reading about Atticus Finch, but I'm not sure our secular culture is capable of producing too many like him any more.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Christian events in Connecticut this week (May 12-18)


Unspoken comes to Danbury this Saturday

For more complete information or to submit events, please visit the Connecticut Christian Events calendar.

Wednesday, May 14
Intercessory Prayer (Colchester)
Fairfield County Pastors' Fellowship (TBD)

Friday, May 16
Good Fridays Christian Coffeehouse (Naugatuck)

Saturday, May 17
Unspoken @ Community Coffehouse (Danbury)

Friday, May 09, 2008

Demographic Winter: coming soon to a country near you



Trailer for the DVD Demographic Winter

What is "demographic winter?" If you haven't heard this buzzword yet you will shortly. It refers to the belief that we are about to experience the opposite of a "population bomb." Abortion, failure to reproduce, denigration of traditional families and other factors are working to depopulate developed societies around the globe. In the short run, this will have the noticeable effect of Islamicizing regions such as Western Europe, a trend most ably discussed by political writer Mark Steyn in his bestseller America Alone. In the long term, even nations such as China will be affected by a failure to, well, breed at the "replacement rate" of 2.1 children per woman.

Worldwide, birthrates have been halved in the past 50 years. There are now 59 nations, with 44% of the world’s population, with below-replacement fertility

Sometime in this century, the world’s population will begin to decline. At a certain point, the decline will become rapid. We may even reach population free-fall in our lifetimes.

For some countries, population decline is already a reality. Russia is losing three-quarters-of-a-million people a year. Its population (currently 145 million) is expected to fall by one-third by 2050....

Of the 10 countries with the lowest birthrates, 9 are in Europe. Overall, the European fertility rate is 1.3, well below replacement level (2.1). No European nation has a replacement-level birthrate.

Italy’s fertility rate is 1.2. Spain’s is 1.1. That means in the not-too-distant future, absent massive immigration, these countries will lose half of their people in every generation.

Russia’s birthrate fell from 2.4 in 1990 to 1.17 today – a decline of more than 50% in less than 20 years. Each year, there are more abortions than live births in the Russian Federation.


These aren't even the scariest parts of the Demographic Winter movie website. Check it out here.

What would Jonathan Edwards think?

Jonathan Edwards
I think I know why the man in this picture looks so sour: he read this post!

I didn't know Yale once expelled students for being gay. The things you can learn from reading the Courant!

Act 1 was about to start and Richard Lalli had a few last words for his students. Orpheus, Apollo and the others huddled around in their white robes. "Try to be free," Lalli said calmly. "And make it as much your own as possible."

With that, he retreated to the church balcony, dressed for the opera in a silk scarf. In a few short months, his students had mastered "L'Orfeo," and as the opening music filled the rafters, Lalli looked as proud as any parent in the room.

A vocalist, pianist and professor, Lalli is about to take on a new role: master of Yale University's Jonathan Edwards College. He and his partner, Dr. Michael Rigsby, who will be assistant master, are set to become the first openly gay couple to head a campus dorm when they move in next January.

Yale is divided into a dozen residential colleges, each with its own dining hall, intramural sports teams and social events. The college master presides over it all: reassuring parents, nurturing students and providing entertainment, a job that can make directing a Baroque opera, by comparison, seem easy. With Lalli's appointment, Yale follows Harvard in naming a same-sex couple to a high-profile, mothering role, a milestone for a school that once expelled students for being gay.

In a sign of how far society has come, no one is expecting much controversy. "You can never control for every loose cannon, but I just don't think this is an issue anymore," said a close friend, Ralph Hexter, the openly gay president of Hampshire College in Amherst, Mass.

I guess not. We sure have come a long way indeed.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Holding on to teenagers

Can churches hold on to teens and young adults?

"Many churches are losing young people because there's not enough activities or support," said Josefina Cespedes, a community educator and member of the Pentecostal Church John 3:16.

Many of the churches are old-fashioned, she said.

"Churches are failing in providing enough resources for support to adjust to the new generation," Cespedes said.

Even the pastors' children have expressed doubt. Two years ago, Pavon's oldest son, Edward, stopped attending church for six months.

"I wanted to explore the world," Edward Pavon said. "I didn't want to listen to my dad or mom. I was tired of it."

His rebellion left his parents in tears.


Read the Stamford Advocate story "Raised in the Church," and the other stories in the series they are currently running about churches and immigrants.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

There is no Christianity without Christ

Pantocrator
Earliest known icon of Christ as Pantocrator (Almighty)

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him; and he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. (Col. 1:16-18)


Stirring words, pointing to the centrality of Christ. There can be no Christianity without Jesus Christ - not the Jesus-as-moral-teacher of the modern "progressives," but the one of Whom the Apostle Paul was speaking in the passage quoted above. Remove Him from the edifice and you remove every support. Remove the Cross and you have deprived yourself of God's remedy for what you are. Strip Him of His Deity and you have gutted His demand to obedience and His intrinsic authority to command, so forcefully, in that Sermon on the Mount which seems to be highly prized nowadays. As if that Sermon contained only Matthew 7:1 and not Matthew 7:13.

Or 7:23.

We are nearing the time - it's almost here - when society will drop the pretense of the name of Christian. If only they would do it today, simply call their churches and their selves by another name!

The latest window into apostasy is provided by Canada's National Post, in a story featuring the Rev. Gretta Vosper of West Hill United Church in Toronto.


There is a Bible on a pedestal in Gretta Vosper's West Hill United Church in Toronto. She would prefer it did not have a special place, she said, because it is just a book among other books. In a similar way, the cross that is high above the altar has no special meaning, but there are a few older congregants for whom the Bible and the cross are still nice symbols so there they remain.

Though an ordained minister, she does not like the title of reverend. It is one of those symbols that hold the church back from breaking into the future -- to a time "when the label Christian won't even exist" and the Church will be freed of the burdens of the past. To balance out those symbols of the past inside West Hill, there is a giant, non-religious rainbow tapestry just behind the altar and multi-coloured streamers hang from the ceiling.

"The central story of Christianity will fade away," she explained. "The story about Jesus as the symbol of everything that Christianity is will fade away...."

Ms. Vosper does not believe in the Virgin Birth, the Resurrection, the miracles and the sacrament of baptism. Nor does she believe in the creeds, the presence of Christ in communion or that Jesus was the Son of God.

In With or Without God, her book that was formally launched this week, she writes that Jesus was a "Middle Eastern peasant with a few charismatic gifts and a great posthumous marketing team."


What is striking is the blatancy and self-assuredness, the willingness to reach beyond and no longer even feel the need to appeal to Jesus for anything of substance. Typically, love is all that is said to matter:

The focus of her "spiritual" life is love. And since love is the common bond between all people, it is really the only thing worth believing in.

"Here in the context of seeking out harmony with all things, the purest understanding of those values that enhance and sanctify life becomes the foremost spiritual practice," she writes.

"We call it love, radically inclusive love. It is here, in the caring, challenging, prophetic role with which it is so familiar that the church can really shine."


If only love were the common bond between all people. But, the reality of this life is that Man is at enmity with himself, with others, and with God. The Christ of Christianity is the answer to this problem.

Read the whole thing here.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Hartford Police Chief doesn't have the luxury of ignoring reality

Peter Wolfgang of the Family Institute of Connecticut gives us the scoop on last week's National Day of Prayer gathering in Hartford and the hypocrisy of the Left. Kudos for Police Chief Roberts for his courage. It's about time we heard this kind of talk from a high public official.

Speaking to a group that at one point reached standing-room-only size, Chief Roberts’ talk made a tremendous impact on the crowd. He called himself “a praying chief” and noted that he was a deacon in his church (his pastor was present). He asked us to work and pray that kids will be brought to God. He said he deals with the kids who are not coming to God, the ones who will kill you over a minor disagreement.

Read all of it and be encouraged.

Global Day of Prayer this Sunday, May 11



From Connecticut House of Prayer comes this notice:

On May 11, 2007 we will be holding our 3rd Global Day of Prayer here in CT. This years meeting will be different than what you have experienced in the past. We are planning a free flowing event that will combine worship and intercession. There will be prayer guides for our view on the overhead but we really want to have an experience of worship and intercession that will welcome the Holy Spirit into our midst. Connecticut is changing and I am hearing reports that salvations, moves of God in healing and deliverance are happening around the state. Please come and join us for this time of prayer with millions around the globe from every tribe and tongue. I am looking forward to seeing you on May 11.

Barbara Lachance
CT House of Prayer, Inc.

This year's event will take place on May 11, at 6:00 PM at Gateway Christian Fellowship, 129 Bull Hill Lane, West Haven.

Monday, May 05, 2008

We stand corrected, mostly.

I recently wrote about why America is falling apart, complaining about modern education, such as it is. An alert reader did pointed out that my story about the rigors of taking 8th grade exams in 1895 was false, as a simple check of Snopes.com would have pointed out. My bad.

However, the background on Snopes did prove my point in a way. The actual tests from that era do reveal how much "basic" knowledge we're not getting in 2008. While it may not be important to know the feminine of "bachelor," the knowledge expected of teachers in the late 19th century is interesting. Read more:

http://www.snopes.com/language/document/1895exam.asp

Christian Events in Connecticut this week (May 5 - 11)

For more complete information or to submit events, please visit the Connecticut Christian Events calendar.

Monday, May 5

Litchfield County Regional Prayer Meeting (Torrington)

Wednesday, May 7
Intercessory Prayer (Colchester)

Thursday, May 8
Regional Prayer Meeting (New Haven)

Friday, May 9
Holy Grounds Christian Coffeehouse (Berlin)
Men 4 Men Ministries Coffeehouse (Clinton)
Good Fridays Christian Coffeehouse (Naugatuck)

Saturday, May 10
Statewide Intercessors Gathering (Kensington)
Dave Pettigrew @ House of Grace Community Coffehouse (Milford)

Sunday, May 11
Global Day of Prayer (West Haven)

Thursday, May 01, 2008

National Day of Prayer 2008

On this National Day of Prayer, let's continue to ask God's mercies on America:

2008 Prayer for Our Nation, by Dr. Ravi Zacharias, Honorary Chairman, National Day of Prayer Task Force:

Holy Father, in a world where so many are hungry,
You have given us food in abundance
In a world where so many are hurting, You offer to bind up our wounds;
In a world where so many are lonely,
You offer friendship to every heart;
In a world longing for peace, You offer hope.

Yet, we are so stubborn and resistant.
Have mercy upon us, Lord
Our nation is at a crossroads this year;
We look to you to be our strength and shield.
Please give us the guidance to elect one who will honor You
And to respond to the wisdom from above
So that our hope may be renewed and our blessings be treasured.

In God’s holy Name!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

National Day of Prayer this Thursday

This Thursday, May 1st, is the National Day of Prayer. This year there are many events taking place all across the State - find one near you by clicking here and searching Connecticut.

President Bush's Official Proclamation for the day states:

A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America

America trusts in the abiding power of prayer and asks for the wisdom to discern God's will in times of joy and of trial. As we observe this National Day of Prayer, we recognize our dependence on the Almighty, we thank Him for the many blessings He has bestowed upon us, and we put our country's future in His hands.

From our Nation's humble beginnings, prayer has guided our leaders and played a vital role in the life and history of the United States. Americans of many different faiths share the profound conviction that God listens to the voice of His children and pours His grace upon those who seek Him in prayer. By surrendering our lives to our loving Father, we learn to serve His eternal purposes, and we are strengthened, refreshed, and ready for all that may come.

On this National Day of Prayer, we ask God's continued blessings on our country. This year's theme, "Prayer! America's Strength and Shield," is taken from Psalm 28:7, "The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped." On this day, we pray for the safety of our brave men and women in uniform, for their families, and for the comfort and recovery of those who have been wounded.

The Congress, by Public Law 100-307, as amended, has called on our Nation to reaffirm the role of prayer in our society by recognizing each year a "National Day of Prayer."

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 1, 2008, as a National Day of Prayer. I ask the citizens of our Nation to give thanks, each according to his or her own faith, for the freedoms and blessings we have received and for God's continued guidance, comfort, and protection. I invite all Americans to join in observing this day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-first day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand eight, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-second.

GEORGE W. BUSH

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Switchfoot in concert at Stamford, May 2



Top Christian band Switchfoot returns to Connecticut on Friday, May 2 with a concert in Stamford's Palace Theatre.

For tickets and more details, please visit www.RockTheSound.com.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Milford will participate in "World Tai Chi Day." Why?

From the Connecticut Post:

Saturday, the 10th anniversary of the World Tai Chi and Qigong Day, will be marked here by a demonstration on the Green of the centuries-old techniques.

"It is the third time that Milford has participated in the event, which is called 'One World, One Breath,' " said organizer Lamont Thomas. "Beginning in New Zealand, people will be gathering in parks at 10 a.m. local time to do tai chi and qigong and to teach it.

"I've been a practitioner and a teacher for four years and I started as a way to reduce stress," Thomas said. "It is a healing modality and a martial art that stresses balance."

Bruce Walker, like Thomas a local teacher of the Chinese technique, said tai chi acts on the body's hormonal and immune systems. "You deliberately squeeze, stretch and pull your internal organs around with your core muscles and that gets the enzymes and hormones out of the organs and into the bloodstream."


What's wrong with this picture? This is an essentially religious practice, but advocates of Eastern religious and meditative practices have for many years been adept at recasting such things as exercise. Christians in the West typically do not understand the religious roots and scientific flimsiness - or even dangers - of many of these "imports."

What's the basis of Tai Chi? Dr. Stephen Barrett, M.D., writes at Quackwatch.com:

"Chinese medicine," often called "Oriental medicine" or "traditional Chinese medicine (TCM)," encompasses a vast array of folk medical practices based on mysticism. It holds that the body's vital energy (chi or qi) circulates through channels, called meridians, that have branches connected to bodily organs and functions. Illness is attributed to imbalance or interruption of chi.. Ancient practices such as acupuncture, Qigong, and the use of various herbs are claimed to restore balance....

In 1997, a Consensus Development Conference sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and several other agencies concluded that "there is sufficient evidence . . . of acupuncture's value to expand its use into conventional medicine and to encourage further studies of its physiology and clinical value." The panelists also suggested that the federal government and insurance companies expand coverage of acupuncture so more people can have access to it. These conclusions were not based on research done after NCAHF's position paper was published. Rather, they reflected the bias of the panelists who were selected by a planning committee dominated by acupuncture proponents. NCAHF board chairman Wallace Sampson, M.D., has described the conference "a consensus of proponents, not a consensus of valid scientific opinion."

Although the report described some serious problems, it failed to place them into proper perspective. The panel acknowledged that "the vast majority of papers studying acupuncture consist of case reports, case series, or intervention studies with designs inadequate to assess efficacy" and that "relatively few" high-quality controlled trials have been published about acupuncture's effects. But it reported that "the World Health Organization has listed more than 40 [conditions] for which [acupuncture] may be indicated." This sentence should have been followed by a statement that the list was not valid.

Far more serious, although the consensus report touched on Chinese acupuncture theory, it failed to point out the danger and economic waste involved in going to practitioners who can't make appropriate diagnoses. The report noted:

  • The general theory of acupuncture is based on the premise that there are patterns of energy flow (Qi) through the body that are essential for health. Disruptions of this flow are believed to be responsible for disease. The acupuncturist can correct imbalances of flow at identifiable points close to the skin.
  • Acupuncture focuses on a holistic, energy-based approach to the patient rather than a disease-oriented diagnostic and treatment model.
  • Despite considerable efforts to understand the anatomy and physiology of the "acupuncture points," the definition and characterization of these points remains controversial. Even more elusive is the scientific basis of some of the key traditional Eastern medical concepts such as the circulation of Qi, the meridian system, and the five phases theory, which are difficult to reconcile with contemporary biomedical information but continue to play an important role in the evaluation of patients and the formulation of treatment in acupuncture.

Simply stated, this means that if you go to a practitioner who practices traditional Chinese medicine, you are unlikely to be properly diagnosed. Very few publications have mentioned this, which strikes me as very strange. Even Consumer Reports magazine has advised readers who want acupuncture treatment to consult a practitioner who is NCCAOM-certified. I advise people to avoid "certified" practitioners. Because the training needed for certification is based on nonsensical TCM theories, the safest way to obtain acupuncture is from a medical doctor who does research at a university-based medical school and does not expouse such theories. [Footnotes omitted.]


We owe it to ourselves to be better informed, not only for our health's sake but for our spiritual health's sake, too.

The Pope and the Pentecostals

No papal visit would be complete without the obligatory New York Times article about the challenge posed to the Catholic Church by Pentecostalism, complete with photos of frenetic worshippers:


As Pope Benedict XVI completes his visit to the United States on Sunday with a Mass at Yankee Stadium, in a borough that has been home to generations of Latinos, he does so facing something of a growing challenge to the church’s immigrant ranks.

For if Latinos are feeding the population of the church, many have also turned to Pentecostalism, a form of evangelical Christianity that stresses a personal, even visceral, connection with God.

Today, it has more Latino followers in the United States than any other denomination except Catholicism; they are drawn, they say, by the faith’s joyous worship, its use of Latino culture and the enveloping sense of community it offers to newcomers. As the Pew survey revealed, half of all Latinos who have joined Pentecostal denominations were raised as Catholics.

Of course, being the New York Times, all of this is chalked up to "populism." There is no reference at all to theology in the sense of anyone's actual beliefs, only the feelings of belonging that people have. The Times seems to give voice to the sentiment of some that more Mariachi masses will stem the exodus. Is this analysis?

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Internet Evangelism Day 2008



The vast majority of Christian websites are made by Christians, for Christians. Is that a problem?

Internet Evangelism Day is coming up on Sunday, April 27 - a time for churches and people everywhere to think about how to use this cute little internet thing to reach people for Christ.

Note: this video refers to last year's date.

For more information, visit the Internet Evangelism Day website here.

Run Against Drugs in Danbury, April 26



Athletes of Christ and many others are sponsoring a 5K Race/Walk called "Danbury Running Against Drugs" on April 26 at Rogers Park in Danbury.

For more information, visit www.tri-n-run.com.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The pregnant man. Or, not.

I had heard of this in passing but frankly so much strangeness crosses one's eyes these days that I hadn't actually read about it.

Thomas may be a man in the eyes of the law, but she remains physically a woman, with a woman's reproductive system, a woman's genitals, and a woman's chromosomes. So when she and Nancy decided to have a baby, she had little trouble conceiving through artificial insemination. The result is the spectacle that has drawn so much attention: a bearded pregnant woman named Thomas, who identifies herself as a man, and has a lawfully wedded wife.


More here from Jeff Jacoby, if you can stand it.

Dave Pettigrew coming to House of Grace Coffee House

Dave Pettigrew
Christian recording artist Dave Pettigrew

The "House of Grace" Community Coffee House will be hosting Dave Pettigrew for an uplifting program of Christian music. This concert event will be held on May 10, 2008 at Grace Baptist Church, 400 Burnt Plains Road, Milford, CT. Join us for food & fellowship at 6:00 PM, with music following afterwards at 7:00 PM.

For more information call (203) 874-8928 or visit www.houseofgracecc.com. Free admission, food & drink.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Why America is falling apart

Well, one reason anyway. I came across this interesting piece about education. Here's an 8th-grade final exam from a Kansas school in the year 1895.


“Grammar. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications. Define verse, stanza and paragraph. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal parts of ‘lie’, ‘play’ and ‘run’. Define case; Illustrate each case. What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.

“Arithmetic. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold? If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare? District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals? Find the cost of 6720 lbs. of coal at $6.00 per ton. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.

“U.S. History. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War. Show the territorial growth of the United States. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.

“Orthography. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication? What are elementary sounds? How classified? What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals. Give four substitutes for caret ‘u’. (Huh?). Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.

“Geography. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend? How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas? Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean? Describe the mountains of North America. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.


Hmmm. How did you do? Hat tip: Assist News.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Watch your roofs!

Now it's not just copper; church thieves are after the lead in your roofs as well:


“Whenever I get an early morning phone call these days, I think, ‘Oh no, they’ve taken the roof again,’ ” said John Deave, 80, a retired barrister and a churchwarden at St. Guthlac’s church in Stathern, another Leicestershire village, where the church was vandalized in January.

Part of the problem is that no one is going to church in some of these places.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Thursday's Rally in Hartford a big success

From the FIC:

"They converged in big numbers at the state Capitol today to rally against same-sex marriage and for the right to homeschool their children." That was how Channel 3's Al Terzi began a 5:30 pm Eyewitness News report about FIC Action's Pro-Family Rally and Lobby Day yesterday. You can see the report that ran on the 12:00 pm edition of Eyewitness News by clicking here.

A "crowd of about 125" attended our Rally, according to today's Courant. That number appears on page B3, in a caption beneath a beautiful Shana Sureck photo of FIC Action president Peter Wolfgang's daughter Elizabeth, age 7. You can view the Courant's "Family Institute of Connecticut rally" photo gallery by clicking here. The Rally was also covered by Fox 61's News at Ten show, the Archdiocese of Hartford's "Crossroads" television program and airmaria.com.

Christian divorce rates confirmed to be as high as anyone else's

wedding flowers

From The Christian Post comes more disturbing evidence of the disintegration of society:

After months of revived debate over divorce and its increasing acceptance among Americans, a new study affirmed born again Christians are just as likely as the average American couple to divorce.

The Barna Group found in its latest study that born again Christians who are not evangelical were indistinguishable from the national average on the matter of divorce with 33 percent having married and divorced at least once. Among all born again Christians, which includes evangelicals, the divorce figure is 32 percent, which is statistically identical to the 33 percent figure among non-born again adults, the research group noted.

"There no longer seems to be much of a stigma attached to divorce; it is now seen as an unavoidable rite of passage," George Barna, who directed the study, stated in the study, which was released Monday.

More here.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Pro-Family Rally this Thursday at Capitol

From the Family Institute of Connecticut comes this notice - be sure to visit their site for complete details:

Join Connecticut families from around the state to take a stand for protecting marriage, parental rights and the innocence of our children this Thursday, April 3rd on the east grounds of the state Capitol in Hartford at 10:00 am. More and more Connecticut residents like you who want to do something to stop our state's movement to redefine marriage, impose "transgendered" special rights and force "sex ed" on our children have committed to taking a day off from work to attend the rally.

FIC Action is also working to pass laws to protect the right of parents to homeschool their children, raise the age at which a minor girl must be counseled before obtaining an abortion and establish a task force to study fatherlessness in our state. But to pass the good bills and stop the bad bills, it is critical that we show our support for pro-family values on a weekday while the legislature is in session.

We will begin the day with the Pro-Family Rally on the east grounds of the state capitol and then move over to the Legislative Office Building (Room 1D) to meet with our legislators. We will have some basic training on how to talk to your legislators, so don't worry if you've never done this sort of thing before! Also, it is fine to simply come and attend the Rally and not the Lobby Day. We are asking you to do whatever you can to protect marriage and the family!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Beth Moore's "New England Nights" tour coming to Bloomfield this October

Popular author and Bible teacher Beth Moore will be in New England for a series of meetings this October, including a stop at Bloomfield's First Cathedral on the evening of October 17. Appearing with Beth will be worship leader Travis Cottrell.

Each "New England Nights" event is scheduled for 7:00 - 9:15 p.m., with doors opening at 6:00 p.m. All seats are general admission, $35.00 per person.

For more information, visit Beth Moore's website at Lifeway.com.

For more Christian events near you, visit our Connecticut Christian Events Calendar.

The fruit of the sexual revolution

U. S. News & World Report lays it out in black and white:

"What we found is alarming," Dr. Sara Forhan, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said during a teleconference Tuesday. "One in four female adolescents in the U.S. has at least one of the four most common STDs that affects women."

"These numbers translate into 3.2 million young women nationwide who are infected with an STD," Forhan said. "This means that far too many young women are at risk of the serious health effects of untreated STDs, including infertility and cervical cancer."

These common STDs include human papillomavirus (HPV), chlamydia, herpes simplex virus and trichomoniasis, Forhan said.

Forhan announced the results as part of the CDC's 2008 National STD Prevention Conference, in Chicago.

"These findings are really giving us a lot of pause about how we provide care to adolescent girls who are sexually active," said Dr. Elizabeth Alderman, an adolescent medicine specialist at Children's Hospital at Montefiore in New York City and chairperson of the Executive Committee of the Section of Adolescent Health of the American Academy of Pediatrics. "The numbers are really astonishing."

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Global Day of Prayer to be celebrated May 11



On Sunday, May 11, 2008 Connecticut believers will once again come together for the Global Day of Prayer.

The Global Day of Prayer is a world-wide celebration centered around Pentecost Sunday. The mission of this celebration is to unite the global body of Christ, to seek God for revival, intercede on behalf of our world, and collaborate for the blessing and transformation of our cultures. It is preceded by ten days of prayer (Acts 1:14); celebrated in public venues on Pentecost (Acts 2:1) and followed by "90 Days of Blessing" on communities after Pentecost (Acts 2:42).

Please join us as hundreds of thousands of people from around the world join together in worship and intercession.

The local site for this year's meeting will be held at: Gateway Christian Fellowship, 129 Bull Hill Lane, West Haven, Connecticut. For more information, please contact the church at (203) 934-0880. The meeting will be held at 6:00 PM.

Flickr photo by Jorge Andrés Paparoni Bruzual; some rights reserved.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Street preachers rile up Mystic

Interesting issues here:

Last Saturday, one of the preachers, a polite young man from the Victory Bible Baptist Church in Ledyard, 18-year-old Jayson Hill, was issued a $103 ticket by Stonington police, accused of creating a public disturbance.

I was there when police wrote Hill the ticket, and it was a remarkably subdued and, yes, quiet confrontation. Hill and a companion preacher lingered afterwards, still holding big signs suggesting the GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD.

Hill stopped preaching that afternoon, but he said he would plead not guilty to the ticket, hire a lawyer if necessary and return.

“We have the right to do what we are doing,” said Hill, who lives in Ledyard and works as a construction laborer. “This is America. We have the freedom to do this. We are spreading the Gospel. We are not going to whisper.”

More here at the Day, and here.

A Christian blog worth reading - from an unlikely source



Over the years many Christians have looked down their noses at Charisma magazine. Some complain that its too gossipy, others that it's simply one big advertisement. Although some may consider the magazine an unlikely source to generate a blog worth reading, I continue to be impressed and challenged by the "Fire In My Bones" blog written by author J. Lee Grady, Charisma's editor.

Grady is seemingly on a personal mission to grab the American church by the lapel and slap it. I think he's succeeding. His latest column shares a meeting the late Kenneth Hagin had in 2003 with various preachers in which he attempted to correct their overemphasis and outright false teachings on giving and propsperity:

4. The “hundredfold return” is not a biblical concept. Hagin did the math and figured out that if this bizarre notion were true, “we would have Christians walking around with not billions or trillions of dollars, but quadrillions of dollars!” He rejected the popular teaching that a believer should claim a specific monetary payback rate....

Hagin condemned other hairbrained gimmicks designed to trick audiences into emptying their wallets. He was especially incensed when a preacher told his radio listeners that he would take their prayer requests to Jesus’ empty tomb in Jerusalem and pray over them there—if donors included a special love gift. “What that radio preacher really wanted was more people to send in offerings,” Hagin wrote.

Thanks to the recent resurgence in bizarre donation schemes promoted by American charismatics, the prosperity gospel is back under the nation’s microscope. It’s time to revisit Hagin’s concerns and find a biblical balance.

Hagin told his followers: “Overemphasizing or adding to what the Bible actually teaches invariably does more harm than good.” If the man who pioneered the modern concept of biblical prosperity blew the whistle on his own movement, wouldn’t it make sense for us to listen to his admonition?

In his previous post, Grady had discussed the call to holiness being put forth by noted pastor Larry Stockstill:
Stockstill became alarmed about the anemic condition of American churches in 2006, when he had to step in and help bring discipline to Ted Haggard, the Colorado pastor who was removed as senior leader of New Life Church because of a moral failure. Stockstill offered correction and oversight to Haggard and his family and helped the leaders of New Life pick up the pieces after the scandal. Many observers praised Stockstill for his level-headed leadership and compassionate but strict adherence to biblical principles during the crisis.

What Stockstill learned during that painful process became the basis of a new book, The Remnant: Restoring Integrity to American Ministry. He hopes the message will trigger a movement of holiness and integrity in the American church, which has suffered a long string of embarrassing sexual and financial failures since Haggard’s fall 15 months ago.

“We look like a sleaze bucket in the eyes of the nation,” says the 54-year-old pastor, who has avoided the national spotlight during most of his 33 years in ministry. Once a missionary in Africa, Stockstill has focused most of his ministry on church planting and missions. Bethany has helped start more than 17,000 churches worldwide since 2000.

Stockstill says the level of dysfunction among American ministers concerns him because their unhealthiness is then passed down to their congregations.


This is all a good corrective to some of what's flying at us over the Christian airwaves.