Posted by: celticanglican | October 16, 2017

Prayer Requests 10/15/2017

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers for:

Jordan, continued healing

Cliff, serious post-surgical throat pain

Patrick, several serious health concerns

Alice, repose of soul and comfort for her family

Kevin, prostate cancer Reply to his brother here

Christy, a young mom with cancer and a friend, also a young mom, who has cancer, Yola, Christy’s daughter, recent ear surgery

Mary, cancer and a recent hospital admission

Teresa asks for continued job success and son Braxton’s continued improved grades Reply to her here

Regina, recently released from prison and thankful for finding joy

Syrian Christians trying to return home and rebuild

Peggy, recent surgery

David and Pete, healing Rod can take replies here 

Carl, healing His friend Teresa can take replies here

All children coping with bullying and repentance for the bullies and adults who turn a blind eye

Gloria, debilitating leg pain

Lillian, boyfriend is being sentenced and she is expecting their fourth child

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Posted by: celticanglican | October 8, 2017

Prayer Requests 10/8/2017

Vitrail de synagogue-Musée alsacien de Strasbourg

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers for:

Jenn’s husband, struggling to find employment after his prison release

Harley, for blessings on her upcoming marriage and for her safe pregnancy and delivery

Cindy, who has possible ovarian cancer

For the people of every country struggling with issues of political unrest, ethnic/religious violence and intolerance

For Jaynne’s family’s healing from a serious cold and that Bert (age 91) doesn’t get it

Torrin (age 12) who has lymphoma

Becky, who has started retaining a lot of fluid recently

John’s granddaughter, recent hand surgery and recovering well

Randy, trying to get back on his feet after being in prison

Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. (Book of Common Prayer, 1979)

Posted by: celticanglican | October 4, 2017

Prayer Requests 10/3/2017

Guido di Graciano. Staint-Francis-and-Stories-from-his-Life. 1270.

St. francis of Assisi, whom the Church remember tomorrow

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers for:

The homeless, the hungry, all who are desolate and oppressed

The souls of those killed in the Las Vegas shooting and the injured

Danny, recently injured in a motorcycle accident but expected to recover

 

 

Posted by: celticanglican | September 28, 2017

Prayer Requests 9/28/2017

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Richard Rolle, Hermit, religious writer, Bible translator

Please pray for:

Elizabeth, healing from an infection

Debbie, recently blacked out, has facial swelling

Pedro, continued improvements in his life as he serves a sentence

Cindy’s family member’s unspoken need

Raul’s cousin, epilepsy

Pete, very recent surgery

*Please note: if there is no contact link next to a request, there was no email address provided and I am unable to relay responses to the original requester. I only share email addresses, FB links, etc. with permission.*

 

 

 

 

Posted by: celticanglican | September 17, 2017

Review: Broken Trust by F. Remy Diederich

Spiritual abuse is something that exists in so many settings, yet many people aren’t aware of it or minimize its significance. Fortunately, Remy Diederich offers a fresh yet informative perspective that I think effectively blows a lot of misconceptions straight out of the water.

Even with all the useful information contained in its pages, this book is easily read in a few sittings. Its division into five parts covers defining toxic faith and spiritual abuse, practical steps for dealing with spiritual abuse, recovery, steps to take after leaving, and how to rescue your faith community from spiritual abuse.

In addition to Remy’s personal story involving spiritual abuse, he also shares input from other spiritual abuse survivors that helps shed light on the various ways spiritual abuse rears its ugly head. Though they are relatively brief snippets into the lives of these people in a spiritual abuse setting, they help demonstrate the destruction that toxic faith causes.

Through clear examples from Scripture and the words of spiritual abuse experts like Thom Ranier and Dr. Ron Enroth, we gain a clearer perspective on how spiritual abuse becomes an issue. I think that Remy’s citing of past pastoral experience helps bring a very real sense of authority to his writing – he has seen enough of the effects of spiritual abuse to spot it and call it out.

Other especially useful parts of this book include FAQs on issues not specifically dealt with in the chapters that are worthy of mention and resources for further reading/study on spiritual abuse. If you’re looking for a relatively quick read on spiritual abuse and recovery from said abuse, you won’t go wrong with this book.

 

Posted by: celticanglican | September 10, 2017

A Private Matter or a Circus? It’s Your Choice

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Distant Shores Media/Sweet Publishing

Matthew 18:15-20

It’s interesting to think of how things could’ve played out if the events of Jesus’ time had happened today. The differences in history, religion and politics aside, I think one of the most interesting aspects would have been seeing how some of the notable disputes in the Bible played out on Facebook or Twitter.

I’m sure most of us have witnessed or even been in the midst of a social media firestorm that’s happened because of a simple dispute. Two people have a disagreement on Facebook, and before you know it, twenty people are in on the discussion. Someone takes their dispute with another to Twitter and the next step is a “tweetstorm”.

Human nature hasn’t changed much when it comes to not keeping personal disputes private over the past 2,000 years. Triangulation is never a good way to resolve a personal quarrel, yet it happens way too often.

Bringing others into a problem is a situation to avoid unless absolutely necessary, as Jesus points out in the text. There are situations when someone’s wellbeing is at stake without intervention, and obviously these shouldn’t be kept strictly private.

However, creating a “toxic triangle” serves no purpose besides hindering God’s work of reconciliation among all people. The next time a problem arises between you and another person, think before you act – it doesn’t need to turn into a circus.

 

The #AdoptDontShop hashtag is more than a passing trend. It’s a reminder that those looking for a pet should always consider adoption first, before heading to a breeder.

Please note that I am NOT an animal liberationist who believes in the ultimate extinction of domestic animals – far from it. However, there are enough animals in shelters that the demand for animals from breeders honestly should subside until intake and EU numbers are drastically reduced.

An Australian Cattle Dog (heeler), I’ll call her “Cowgirl” recently ended up in a high-kill shelter that now requires all animals leaving to be altered, per Texas law. When the owner did show up, he stated that his dog was “of no further use to him” spayed and left her to possibly face euthanasia.

“Cowgirl” was adopted out, thanks to extensive networking efforts. However, some of the responses from breeders who chimed in on what was a rescue thread were downright disgraceful, with most of them supporting the former owner.

One of the more inflammatory comments was something to the effect of #adoptdontshop is bullshit*t, extolling the benefits of all breeders while ignoring the irresponsible things many do or ignoring them. Personally, I think defending someone like the former owner of “Cowgirl” is bullsh*t.

It would be nice if every dog breeder was a die-hard breed enthusiast who cared about things like health and working ability, did references and homechecks when placing dogs, and still cared about their dogs as family members, regardless of their breeding ability. The sad thing is, for many who own “money dogs”, it’s all about how much cash the dogs bring in, and the mother dogs are treated as expendable.

Responsible breeders who care about dogs and their breed should support rescue efforts, not fight against them – I know many do and should be commended. Maybe by helping to “clean house” within their own community by calling the backyard dog breeders, the “hump and dump” type that abandon the mother after the puppies are sold and the puppy millers to task, they can be part of the solution.

Remember, #sharingiscaring and #crosspostingsaveslives are sentiments that responsible breeders and rescuers alike can agree on. People who breed animals irresponsibly hurt pets at large.

Posted by: celticanglican | August 12, 2017

Prayers in Honor of Charlottesville Events

Sometimes, words totally escape me and the events of earlier today in Charlottesville have helped make today one of those times. However, these beautiful prayers from the Book of Common Prayer are very appropriate:

For the Departed

Eternal Lord God, you hold all souls in life: Give to your whole Church in paradise and on earth your light and your peace; and grant that we, following the good examples of
those who have served you here and are now at rest, may at the last enter with them into your unending joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the
unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

For the Human Family

O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which
infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in
your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For Social Justice

Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may so move every human heart and especially the hearts of the people of this land, that barriers which divide us may
crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease; that our divisions being healed, we may live in justice and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

In Times of Conflict

O God, you have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For the Oppressed

Look with pity, O heavenly Father, upon the people in this land who live with injustice, terror, disease, and death as their constant companions. Have mercy upon us. Help us to
eliminate our cruelty to these our neighbors. Strengthen those who spend their lives establishing equal protection of the law and equal opportunities for all. And grant that every one of us may enjoy a fair portion of the riches of this land; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

A Prayer attributed to St. Francis

Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where
there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.



Posted by: celticanglican | July 31, 2017

The Ups and Downs of Prayer Partners

Many prayer requests deal with very serious and often heartbreaking issues – cancer, serious injuries with a life and death struggle, divorce and other family issues. Sometimes, some of the difficulties you encounter come off the keyboards or touchscreens of your fellow prayer partners. However, there is a light side – you just have to find a reason to smile or laugh when you wonder why you even bothered embarking on being a prayer partner.

Here are a few of the “difficult” fellow prayer partners you may encounter and how to deal:

The Culture Warrior

You send them an email showing support when they request prayer – and so it begins. A simple email saying you’re praying without a single remark about your religious background or politics turns into a succession of forwards from religiously-oriented PACs televangelists, and local religious leaders. The problem: It’s just plain rude to try to recruit someone you hardly know into a cause they may not support, but unfortunately too many see it as their “religious duty” to do so. The solution: Nicely but firmly tell them prayer requests are always welcome, but that you don’t support their cause and prefer not to receive political emails. If they don’t take heed but you still want to be able to receive their prayer requests, consider just deleting the offending emails or making use of your provider’s email filtering options (one of my Gmail accounts has an interesting assortment of filters, to say the least).

The Nit-Picker

This is a type of “prayer partner” I encountered once and hope I never do again. This person invited people who were forwarded their devotionals to send in prayer requests, then complained about the contents of the requests. A prayer request regarding an imprisoned Chinese pastor was dismissed as irrelevant because the arrest had happened a few years prior, and another request was picked apart literally bit by bit with complaints, including summarizing which of their needs they would pray for and which they wouldn’t. Really? The problem: Who needs any of that? The solution: Some people maybe just don’t need to be part of your prayer circle, and this person could be one of them.

The King (or Queen) of TMI

In many cases, less is more, and this includes prayer requests. I’ve encountered everything from requests that blurt out home addresses and phone numbers to someone that felt the need to share that a friend who blacked out lost control of their bodily functions during the fainting spell. (You really can’t make this stuff up!) If the friend read the copy of that request that was sent to hundreds of other people, I’m sure he quickly became an ex-friend. The problem: Praying for someone doesn’t have to include violating their privacy, sharing personal info that could put their safety at risk, or sharing embarassing details about bodily functions, sexual issues or the like – it’s sad that it’s come to having to tell adults not to blab about certain things. The solution: If prayer partners can submit requests to a site where they are posted publicly, use moderating tools so you have to approve the request before it appears, and have a policy against allowing personal info or too many details that are best kept private.

The Info Seeker

People have any number of reasons for submitting prayer requests that are “unspoken” or general healing, financial, etc. needs and these reasons are usually privacy-related or because the actual circumstances are fairly complex, making a more generalized request better suited. I once encountered a prayer partner from a self-described deliverance ministry who said they didn’t accept unspoken needs because they HAD to know the circumstances – whatever happened to God knows the situation? (Interestingly enough, I later encountered someone who had exited their ministry after feeling judged after sharing about her divorce). The problem: God already knows our needs before we ask, and individual prayer customs can and should accommodate prayers that don’t come accompanied with a multi-page bio. The solution: Some people are inclined to snoop and meddle, asking too much info from prayer requests is unfortunately one way to do that and possibly pray in manipulative ways. Consider seeing their prayer list if published online – ministries that just use a person’s name and a brief blurb or line detailing the basic need have a good perspective, IMO.

What are some of the difficulties, if any, you’ve encountered in prayer ministry involvement?

 

Posted by: celticanglican | July 11, 2017

10 tips on better emails or social media posts for newbies

Originally written June 18, 2007 and revised on July 10, 2017
Some helpful email tips for Internet newbies from a regular email list and Facebook user
1. LOWER YOUR VOICE! Typing an e-mail all in capital letters (uppercase) is considered shouting or screaming, and may make your messages appear angry. In fact, some forums or discussion lists will not permit messages written entirely in caps, and computer users who type all in caps in such forums may find their messages ignored by other members and delated by admins. Typing in mixed case (using proper capitalization) is better. If a disability keeps you from typing properly, all lowercase is considered much more acceptable than all caps. If eyesight or physical limitations make caps or using a large font more practical, you might want to preface your message with a quick note like (CAPS DUE TO EYE ISSUES) so your messages aren’t misunderstood. Even better, learn how to use your computer or device’s magnifying tools.
2. LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAP
The many Facebook groups, messageboards, feeds and e-mail discussion lists out there are very tempting. However, learning about the forums you’re interested in getting involved with before you join will save you a lot of time and frustration. For all forums, it is recommended that you read their website, pinned posts or FAQ’s before signing up, as well as read without posting for a few days to get used to things (commonly called “lurking”). Most (except for so-called free speech forums) have certain guidelines or terms of service you must agree to before participating. Make sure you find out how to register or subscribe/unsubscribe before doing so, especially when subscribing to a mailing list. Nothing angers mailing list users quicker than sending an unsub request to the whole list!
3. CHECK IT OUT! Most of us have gotten one of these at some point: an outrageous story about something that is supposed to be true but allegedly never made the news, an e-mail promising some type of reward for forwarding it to so many people, a warning about a virus that no anti-virus software can fix, or someone offering something that sounds too good to be true. These are commonly known as Urban Legends, hoaxes, or scams. Snopes and Truth or Fiction are some good options, for starters.
I’m sometimes asked, “But what’s the harm in forwarding it anyway? Some of my friends just like getting e-mails” Unfortunately, e-mail hoaxes can create problems which will be addressed in another post. My advice? If a friend of yours just likes receiving e-mail, even a short personal note every day or so will probably be appreciated. In fact, most people probably prefer a personal note from their e-mail friends now and then over a lot of forwards.
4. KEEPING YOUR SYSTEM HEALTHY
Viruses. Yuck! Not only do computer users have to worry about viruses, there are also Trojan horses, “password sniffers”, and other malicious files to look out for. These will be discussed in further detail in my Virus section. Your best defense is to have an up-to-date anti-virus program installed. There are some files out there that aren’t viruses, but can damage your system if opened. As a precaution, avoid downloading attachments from people you don’t know. If you have a high-speed connection (cable, DSL, etc.), using a firewall is recommended. CNET is a good resource to find recommendations for anti-virus/anti-malware and firewall options.

5. WARN ‘EM FIRST! If you’re sending an e-mail as an attachment, it’s a good idea to warn your recipients first, since some people will delete e-mails with attachments unread if not warned beforehand. Also, please keep in mind that just because your e-mail program supports pictures, sound files or stationary, doesn’t mean everyone else’s does. What looks like a beautiful e-mail with nice stationary, lots of pictures, and background music on your computer may simply show up as three pages of code, or worse, as a multi-file attachment on someone else’s. How do you compromise? You may want to find out from your friends whether they can receive pictures, HTML, etc. in their e-mail or not. Send the pretty ones to your friends who can, and send a plain text version to those who can’t. Also, keep in mind that e-mails that have been forwarded numerous times may sometimes be automatically converted into attachments that can only be read using certain mail programs. More on eliminating this problem can be found below.
6. MAKE NEW FRIENDS, BUT MIND YOUR MANNERS
Never add someone you’ve met to the list of people you send e-mails to without asking them first. However well-intentioned, sending someone a lot of e-mail they haven’t asked for may still be considered spam, and you could lose your ISP account if someone complains. Don’t risk it.
7. IF YOU HAVE YOUR OWN MAILING LIST…
It’s advisable to use one of the free mailing list services availiable, rather than simply creating a group in your address book. Mailing list services make lists easier to manage and you also don’t have to worry about adding or removing people to a list yourself, since your members can sign themselves up and also unsubscribe themselves. Another consideration, too, is that if you create a group in your address book and don’t have a way to back it up if your system crashes, your whole list will be lost. A free mail list service, such as Yahoo Groups or Mail Chimp helps eliminate the possibility of your recipient list being permanantly lost. Regardless of what method you use to manage your mailing list, NEVER add ANYONE to your list without their permission. Better yet, provide them with the information on how to subscribe, and let them sign up themselves if interested. All mailing list services have strict rules against unauthorized sign-ups, and even if you send e-mails out using your address book, you could still be accused of spamming if you add someone to your list without permission, and lose your ISP account. Again, please don’t risk it!
8. DON’T TOUCH THAT BUTTON!
Have any of the following ever happened to you? 1.) You send an e-mail to friend, and get back a response from someone you don’t know saying they thought it was funny. 2.) A friend sends you an e-mail that’s a hoax and you (and several other people) get an angry reply back from an address you don’t recognize. 3.) A friend forwards an e-mail to you and several others, and someone sends everyone on the recipient list an invitation to see their website.
This is what happens when someone replies to an e-mail using the Reply All button, instead of Reply. While the Reply All button does have its uses , for the most part it shouldn’t be used when replying to something your friends have sent you. If you hit Reply All, a copy of your response is sent to everyone the original message went to. Depending on what ISP you use, this could be construed as spam, so it’s best to leave the Reply All button alone.
9. CLEANING UP YOUR E-MAIL
Have you ever received e-mails that appeared to be long, but when you read the message, 75% of it is headers (information showing where the e-mail came from), and only a small portion is an actual message? E-mails like this not only can be difficult to read, but also tend to convert into attachments automatically, which can be a problem for many computer users. Also, it leaves behind of trail of information about who sent the e-mail to whom, which isn’t good for privacy. How do you clean up your e-mails?
Highlight the part you want to forward (NOT including the headers showing who it was originally sent to) with your mouse, select COPY from the EDIT menu, open a new e-mail and select PASTE from the EDIT menu. (If it doesn’t paste automatically, make sure your cursor is inside the new e-mail). Now, send it as you would any other e-mail. If you don’t know how to copy, and paste, here’s how. Windows users, highlight the text you want to copy, then hold down the ctrl and C keys. Paste it into a new email by pressing ctrl and V. Mac users, use the same process but use the Command Key (with the apple on it) instead of ctrl.
Also, contrary to popular belief, e-mails with attachments do NOT have to be sent as forwards. If you receive an e-mail with an attachment you want to share, download the attachment, open a new e-mail, and attach the file you’ve just downloaded to your e-mail.
10. KEEPING YOUR ADDRESSES PRIVATE
What IS blind-copying, anyway? It’s a feature provided by most e-mail programs that allows you to send e-mails to several people without everyone seeing everyone else’s e-mail address. Why is it important to blind-copy when sending e-mails? First, it keeps the e-mail from becoming unnecessarily long. A list of 20 recipients in the To: field is enough to make your e-mail twice as long as it needs to be. The second, more important reason has to do with safety. Many people forward e-mails to friends without deleting the original headers. Once you’ve forwarded an e-mail to your friends and they’ve sent it on to their friends, and so on, you have no control over who ends up seeing your e-mail address or your friends’ e-mail addresses. You could find yourself getting a lot of spam mail, or being contacted by strangers with ill intentions.
Most e-mail programs give you a choice of putting your addresses in the To; Cc; or Bcc field. Always select BCC (blind-copy). (Please note-some e-mail programs require you to put something in to To field anyway, even if blind-copying. If this is the case with your e-mail program, you may want to put your own address in the To field). What if t if your e-mail program does not have a blind-copy feature at all? First, make sure there isn’t something you have to do to make the BCC field show up (your email app’s Support section should tell you). If it turns out that your e-mail program doesn’t provide a blind-copy option at all, I would suggest signing up for a web-based e-mail account for sending e-mails to your friends. Also, I would recommend contacting the maker of your e-mail program and urging them to add a blind-copy feature. It’s much better to be safe than sorry.

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