Greetings, iMonks. Once again we have reached the week’s end. Every time we have a Friday, Saturday invariably follows. I like Saturdays. They’re great for hiking, yard work, running to the big box home improvement store to buy things for the yard, wondering why after applying weedkiller my grass is not growing but the weeds are having a great time, watching reruns of Frasier DVR’d Friday night, listening to the Reds lose yet again, and, of course, for Rambling. Shall we begin?
My good friend, pastor of the Spanish service at my church, and leader of my life group—Vic Cruz—heads up One To The Other Ministries. He does a lot of disaster response ministry. Vic was in Haiti just weeks after that devastating earthquake. This week he was in Joplin, Missouri—just a little more than an hour from Tulsa. Vic says that the damage in Joplin was worse than he saw in Haiti. He and a few others were there to hand out food and drink to volunteers and victims. To pray for any who wanted prayer. He watched as they pulled bodies from the remains of houses and buildings. The local Lutheran bishop also toured the town struck by an F5 tornado. You can read his accounts here. Pray. Pray for those in Joplin. One third of the town is gone—just gone. It is a sad time for our neighbors.
In case you missed the news, Oprah retired from her daily show this week. I will confess right here and now that I have watched a grand total of ZERO episodes of Oprah. (There hasn’t been a good talk show on TV since The Dick Cavett Show as far as I”m concerned.) Kathryn Lofton, a professor of U.S. religious history at Yale, talks about how Oprah gained messiah status. How has Oprah affected your life?
Rick Warren announced he has lost 36 pounds while following the Daniel Plan diet he is leading his church in. That’s nothing. All those at Saddleback Church in Southern California who are participating in this diet have lost more than 190,000 pounds. I wonder if the lines at In N Out are any shorter now in Orange County? But that’s not what I wanted to talk about. John Piper interviewed Warren concerning Warren’s theology. I haven’t watched this yet, but it should be very interesting to say the least. And yes, this does fulfill our John Piper quota for the week.
Somehow Martha of Ireland has never mentioned St. Vitalis. He is considered the patron saint of VD—and I’m not talking about Valentine’s Day. I guess there really is a saint for everything. Anyway, St. Vitalis’s head is for sale. The perfect gift for that someone in your life who has everything. Hey—Christmas is only seven months away.
It is well-known in Christian publishing that the overwhelming choice in Bible translations among African Americans is the King James Version. Here is a good article explaining why that is. I for one see the need to keep the KJV alive, if even just for what it has meant to the English language.
Well, maybe the Disney marketing machine won’t be able to market crap (sorry, but as publisher, I don’t allow the word I really want to use)Â emblazoned with the SEAL Team 6 logo after all. Seems the Navy wants to keep it for themselves. If I were Disney, I wouldn’t be messing with the SEALs.
Dancing nuns? Really? Dancing nuns? Well, not any more. The Vatican thought that nuns—including a former stripper—should not be doing interpretive dances around the altar and shuttered the monastery. In case you’re wondering, none of our nuns here at the iMonastery do interpretive dances. We did, however, one time have to stop Chaplain Mike from doing his best Saturday Night Fever imitation.
Eagle-eyed Saturday Ramblings correspondant Adam Palmer (who will occupy this space next week as yours truly will be visiting family and friends in Ohio) found this great article realting what science says about the immortality of the human soul. In related news, Lockheed Martin has been chosen to build the next spacecraft that will carry Americans beyond our moon. This is exciting and overdue news, especially to me. When I was growing up, I wanted to do three things: play second base for the Cincinnati Reds, play the guitar like Jimi Hendrix, and walk on the moon like Neil and Buzz and the other Apollo astronauts. If I could have only chosen one, it would have been the moon. Do you think I’m too old to apply?
When Chaplain Mike wrote about Bob Dylan’s 70th birthday this past Tuesday, a reader wanted to know about Dylan’s spiritual state. Here is a good look at that question from our friends at Christianity Today.
Happy birthdays this week go out to Bob Dylan; Ronald Isley; Al Franken; Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; Bernard Shaw; Rosemary Clooney; Joan Collins; Marvelous Marvin Hagler; Drew Carey; Samuel Rubin (he introduced popcorn to patrons in movie theaters); Tommy Chong; Gary “Radar O’Reilly” Burghoff; Frank Oz; Roseanne Cash; Miles Davis; Al Jolson; James Arness; Levon Helm; Stevie Nicks; Sally Ride; Hank Williams, Jr.; Vincent Price; Peri “Roz” Gilpin; and Bruce Cockburn.
Any other week our bonus video would feature either Levon Helm or Bruce Cockburn. But how can we pass up a classic performance from Robert Allen Zimmerman? This song is just one example of why Bob Dylan may be the greatest songwriter ever. Enjoy.