Just in case you went into hiding after the Reds lost two out of three games to the Kansas City Royals, the story you missed this week that has been well-discussed here and here was the lightning strike that burned the King of Kings statue in front of the Solid Rock Church in Monroe, Ohio. What more needs to be said about this event? Well, nothing that would make me any new friends in Monroe.
We also wrote about setting sail from safe harbor out into the deep waters where we see the great things of God. Perhaps we did not emphasize strongly enough the dangers of the deeps. Abby Sunderland was attempting to become the youngest person to sail solo around the globe when she encountered heavy seas that capsized her boat. She could have stayed safely near the shore, but Abby knows that is not what boats are built for.
So a minister, a rabbi and an imam walk into a bar. If you go to Claremont School of Theology in California, this is not a joke. The University Project will allow seminary students at Claremont to cross-enrol in programs that train future Muslim and Jewish religious leaders while working toward their own degrees in Christian theology. “Christians attend school with Christians, Jewish with Jewish and Muslims with Muslim,” said Rev. Jerry Campbell, president of the Claremont School of Theology. “Educating people in a segregated environment is not a way to teach them to be peacemakers. It only steeps them in their own religion and with their own people.” Your thoughts?
Bryant Wright, pastor of Ferry Baptist Church in Marietta, Georgia was elected on the second ballot this week as the head of the Southern Baptist Convention. He said he wants every Southern Baptist pastor take a mission trip in order to experience another culture. Also at the festivities in Orlando, Southern Baptists adopted “major changes” to deal with shrinking congregations and the “lostness of the world.”
Matt Chandler spoke to the Southern Baptist Convention, saying in part, “I, unfortunately, with a great deal of sorrow have walked away from the idea that all of you are men and women of the Word,” Matt Chandler of The Village Church in Flower Mound, Texas, told a group of Southern Baptist pastors Monday. “I’ve just come to find that a lot of you are really good at clichÃ©s and really bad at tying in the Word.” Ouch. Don’t sugarcoat it, Matt. Tell them how you really feel. Â Here you will read how that Matt got at least one Baptist’s attention by the way he prays. Sounds like we missed a good time in Orlando this week.
It appears the latest fashion fad is the wearing of rosaries. Celebrities are sporting the prayer beads in public, and schools are concerned that rosaries are becoming “gang-wear” that could lead to violence. Alan Creech is a long-time sponsor and contributor here at the Internet Monk. We asked Alan to share with us, from his perspective as a Catholic and as an artist who makes rosaries and other prayer beads, what the proper use of the rosary is. You will find his comments here. (No, as far as I know, Alan is not making a line of beads for Bloods and Crips.)
Watching sports on television, as opposed to watching religious programming, can be hazardous to your health. At least it was for one African, whose wife and children beat him to death for trying to change the channel from their religious program to World Cup soccer action. I just have no response to that. Well, I mean, I have lots of responses, but I had better not go there lest I get in bigger trouble than usual. You, on the other hand, may contribute your thoughts now.
That hideous noise you hear in the background of every World Cup game is not a bunch of angry bees, but rather fans blowing vuvuzelas—three-foot long plastic horns that just sound like angry bees. These can be very dangerous to your health, as one woman found out this week. Here is what ESPN columnist Rick Reilly has to say about these, um, musical instruments:
“Babe, something’s wrong with the TV,” my wife said Saturday. But there wasn’t anything wrong. It was the dreaded vuvuzelas, the yard-long plastic horns (voo-voo-zella) that South African fans blow all the time, without rhyme nor reason, when something is happening and when it’s not (it’s usually not), during timeouts and time ins, during halftime and at the breakfast table and while they’re on the bus and while doing their taxes, until you just want to stab two fondue forks deep into your ears and stir. They never stop. It’s like having a desk in the center cubicle at American Bee, Inc. They sound like 80,000 yaks getting sick. They are the leading cause of Tylenol sales in the world today.
One of the charms of soccer is the singing that fans do. There is always loads of singing and chanting because every game is 1-nil, so there’s plenty of time for singing and chanting. Soccer fans sing and chant inane hilarious things like, “We are from Norway! We came on a plane! And we are very drunk!” But we don’t get to hear the singing and the chanting because of the horrible, hideous, heinous vuvuzelas! They should take them into the mountainous caves region of Pakistan and play them until Osama bin Laden comes running out, screaming, “OK, OK! I give!”
Don’t tell me it’s discrimination to want them to stop. Don’t tell me it’s an essential part of South African culture. If it is, it’s an annoying part of their culture. Yes, I know that centuries ago, the vuvuzelas were made from animal horns to call the village elders in for a meeting. And I’ll bet you five wildebeests that when the elders finally got to the meeting they said, “Would you STOP already with the blowing? You’re making me crazy!” I’ve been to Africa four times. They do some of the most beautiful singing you can imagine. At the World Cup, I’m hearing no singing. I’m hearing no chanting. I’m hearing 80,000 kazoos on steroids.
Ok, this has nothing whatsoever to do with what we usually talk about here at Internet Monk. But how can you pass up a story about a box of human heads? I can’t wait to see the new commercials Southwest Airlines will come up with now. I expect to see a group of baggage handlers lift their shirts to reveal their chests painted with the message, “Heads Fly Free!” Oh come on–you love this and you know it. And don’t you think “Box of Human Heads” would make a great name for a rock band?
Birthdays this week include Anne Frank; Jim “Gomer Pyle” Nabors; Kenny Wayne Shepherd; Junior Brown (my favorite Junior Brown song? “You’re Wanted By The Police, And My Wife Thinks You’re Dead.”); Tim “Buzz Lightyear” Allen; Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen; Jim Belushi; James Smith, lead singer of The Stylistics; Sir Paul McCartney; and Oz Fox, lead guitarist for Stryper.
Finally, mark your calendars for the movie you will want to see this Christmas: Voyage Of The Dawn Treader. This is my favorite book in the Chronicles of Narnia series. From this trailer, it looks like it will be a winner as a movie as well.