Showing posts from January, 2010

Another Australian Victory: Most Sinful Nation on Earth

rubbernecking mennonites
Originally uploaded by -sina-

The Sydney Morning Herald reported today another Australian victory. Seems our country is #1 in the world in .... the Seven Deadly Sins.

Australians have come out on top as the world's most envious people in a tally of nations viz the seven deadly sins.

BBC magazine Focus found Australians also scored highly for the other six sins, making Australia the 'most sinful' country on Earth.

"Sin-prone" Australia was followed by the US, Canada, Finland and Spain.

Researchers used a points system to determine which countries committed the seven deadly sins (lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy and pride), the most.

A bit of history, if I might. According to Sacred Origins of Profound Things, by Charles Panati, Greek monastic theologian Evagrius of Pontus first drew up a list of eight offenses and wicked human passions:. They were, in order of increasing seriousness: gluttony, lust, avarice, sadness, anger, acedia, vain…

Freedom of speech

Originally uploaded by bobmendo Let 'em speak! That's the idea of the concept of 'freedom of speech.' It's a work in progress here in Australia. Although there is no legal statement of such in any Bill of Rights, it's been a right that is assumed. But that right is being challenged as reported today in the news.

A row has exploded between retailing groups about politicians making public appearances in shopping malls.

Shopping Centre Council of Australia executive director Milton Cockburn told News Limited newspapers that shopping centre managers had to ensure patrons could visit centres without interference or harassment.

But the national executive director of The Retailer's Association, Scott Driscoll, said local politicians were only in the shopping centres for a short amount of time to connect with the real people.

Can a politician speak about his issues on such private property as shopping centres?

On another topic, George Brandis is taki…

Heidi does Australia (Tennis in Melbourne Park)

What is the role of an exectuive anyway? Isn't it to execute, to choose, to make tough choices? So where were the television Channel 7 executives at 5:55 pm today Sydney time? I know, it's Australia Day, and I'm celebrating with my family. I enjoy the barbie and the lamb (thanks, Sam, good recommendation). We had a lovely day. The weathermen were dead wrong calling for rain, and I felt confident in their wrongness so we did the laundry and hung it out this morning.

Speaking of wrong calls, back to Channel 7. You see, Channel 7 rides the back of the Australian Open (tennis) each year this time. It's a good partnership, almost as good as the Woodies.

So what did the executives do or not do? In the fourth set of the match between Marin Cilic of Croatia and Andy Roddick, with everything on the line, Channel 7 said, 'we'll be back at 7:30, with the match between Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray.' That's it. No apologies, no "you can see the entire match in …

Country and Preferences

Tonight in Tamworth the party of the year let loose. Earlier presenters distributed the Golden Guitars, and country and western noteworthies enjoyed the night. The Country festival has been going for 8 days, and what a way to conclude.

Wait, you say, you aren't into country music. I understand. It doesn't seem right. Some say it's too much honky-tonk, it's too much sadness, it's too much the same.

Felicity Urquhart was awarded her first solo Golden Guitar as Female Artist of the Year. Troy Cassar-Daley walked away with a total of six Awards for his ARIA-Award-winning album, I Love this Place. The impressive win brings Troy’s cumulative total of Golden Guitar trophies to 20. Keith Urban won an award tonight and received it via video feed, maybe next year Keith will come along.

Blake Shelton and Trace Adkins sing Hillbilly Bone and get all kinds of uppity New Yorkers off their chairs. You really have to watch the video. It's a hoot. I think that's the way it …

Sabbath... Sunday.... Saturday... help!?

Originally uploaded by bobmendo So many write our office and request information or clarification or support for their own views... "Do you believe in the 7th-day Sabbath?" or "When do you people worship?" or such.

I pondered this question and my usual answer again this evening as I looked through these photos of our trip to Adelaide last year. What a great time we had. You can see them on Bob Photos
One of the ones that made me smile was this one of Stacey, the young woman who led the service (SDA folks title her role 'hostess') that morning in May 2009. She did a great job that morning.

Back in Washington, DC, where I worked for 7 years in the 90s, I first found the SDA denomination. Seventh-day Adventists and one of its leaders Cliff Goldstein. Here's the link for Cliff's wikipedia information, Goldstein

So I was challenged to read and did read a lot.

All the while I ran all this information through the grid of the Bible and …

Looking forward?

Fairytale gone bad
Original by Andreas Constantinou on Flickr As 2009 ended I wrote a blog on Looking backward. So many are historical, in their perspectives and their conversations. Or they live in the rosy or cloudy past and that is their comfort.

The discomfort for them and for many of us, comes in looking forward. Now, to be sure, some are forward thinkers. Some are planners (I avoid the redundant 'forward planners', after all how can you plan otherwise?) And in a way, we all plan, anticipate, dream, look ahead. We want to know who is going to be at the meeting. What time will my favorite game or show be on television? When is that appointment at the dentist?

But the bigger picture and the bigger questions are also in view for planners. Questions like what happens if I lose my job? Where do I find groceries when I move houses? Who will look after me when I'm old?

See what I mean? That's uncomfortable.

And I don't wish you discomfort at all in 2010. But the reality …

Art Katz on Hosea and Gomer and End Times

God’s endtime strategy for the restoration of Israel back to Himself

Written by Art Katz (see end for bio)

God gives us the prophet Hosea and his relationship with his adulterous wife as being a perfect parallel of His relationship with an adulterous Israel. The prophet has to experience God’s grief for His nation. If Hosea is going to be the mouthpiece of God, he is going to proclaim some hard things, and therefore needs to share God’s grief for the people he is addressing.

Gomer did not begin as a hardened prostitute. She began as a woman of Israel, and by a process of moral deterioration relative to the rejection of the knowledge of God, there was a corresponding moral decay in her own life. Jewish commentators frequently treat the prophets as champion of social justice, as if their only message was the issue of social concern; but they do not understand that when the prophets addressed the social concerns, it was the symptom of a much deeper mal…