Daily Archives: 6 May 2012

Mass Infant Baptisms… Blah

The patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church presided over the baptism of hundreds of babies in a Tbilisi cathedral on Sunday as part of an effort credited with helping raise the birth rate in this former Soviet nation.  Patriarch Ilia II has promised to become the godfather of all babies born into Orthodox Christian families who already have two or more children. Since he began the mass baptisms in 2008, he has gained nearly 11,000 godchildren.

I have a specifically pointed thoroughly developed theological response to such things:  Blah!

Even assuming that infant baptism is legitimate, no one person can really be an adequate ‘godfather’ to that many children.  It’s a publicity stunt aimed, as the report notes, on increasing the birth rate.

But all they have to do for that to happen is become Catholics (or more specifically Catholic priests- those guys have loads of children).  Or Homeschoolers.  Those homeschoolers have hundreds of children.

Mass infant baptisms… if you could see me now you’d see me sticking my tongue out at you.

Welcome, World (Or at Least Most of It)

This map, from my WordPress stats page, shows all the countries from which visitors here have come since Feb 25, 2012.  In short, some of the ‘stans’ in middle Asia are absent (as is Iran…).  Some in west Africa too, which is, admittedly, pretty hurtful.  But, most painfully of all, Greenland hasn’t sent a single soul this way in almost two and a half months.  Come on, Greenland.  What gives?

Huldrych Zwingli to Andreas Osiander

Huldrych Zwingli

On 6 May, 1527, when the dispute between Luther and Zwingli about the meaning of the Lord’s Supper was really heating up, Zwingli wrote his friend Osiander

Sunt quidam hodie tam perverse docti et religiosi, Hosiander colende, ut, quicquid ab eis dissentiat, etiamsi verissimum sit, reiicere contumeliaque summa adficere non pudeat. Quales hac tempestate (pro dolor) plurimi reperiuntur, dum pars carnem Christi corpoream in coena dominica edi adserimus, pars negamus.

Naturally he has Luther in mind, that stubborn little chubby man who rejected the truth about the Supper in spite of all the biblical evidence he had been shown.  Nothing would change.

It’s a real treat, a real delight to read the correspondence of these theologians if only for the honesty they exhibit.  They said – to one another – what they thought.

Another Snippet of a Tease About the Press Conference to Be Held Tuesday, May 8

The media relations department of Hebrew University relates

On Tuesday, May 8, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem will hold a press conference and private tour to announce all-new findings related to the time of Kings David and Solomon, including presentation of artifacts never before seen by the public related to construction of Solomon’s temple and palace.

Via Joseph Lauer.  This notice adds just a bit more of a tease to the previously released snippet discussed here.  In the meantime, there’s also this.

It looks like Tuesday is going to be an interesting day.

Perhaps the Wave of Contempt for Governments Sweeping Europe Will also Sweep the US…

And we’ll elect a socialist President like the French have.  Because, let’s face it- the Republicans and Democrats have ruined the country.

Your Favorite Bloggers Go Shopping for Mother’s Day…

Mike Bird v. James Crossley: The Smackdown

If You’re in Sheffield, Go!!!!

Sheffield Biblical Studies

John Rogerson recently opened the 65th anniversary of the Dept of Biblical Studies at Sheffield with an excellent lecture on ‘New Horizons in Biblical Studies: How Sheffield Helped to Change Things in the 1970s and 1980s’ (brief report here). Apart from lots of historical details about biblical studies in the 50s, 60s and 70s, one of the striking things about the lecture was just how radical things like the use of social sciences and literary approaches were, even to the extent that they were not been deemed legitimate areas of study for biblical studies or areas of study in similar departments in British universties. I write ‘striking’ because these approaches have been absorbed into the mainstream and were so relatively quickly (by the 80s) in no small part to now major scholars in the field.

The next lecture on Wednesday 9 May, 2012 takes us back chronologically to…

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More Maniacal Vandalism in Israel

Apparent anti-Israeli vandals damaged an ancient archaeological site featuring a monk’s mill this weekend in the northern part of the country.  The site, known as the “Monk’s Mill,” dates back about 500 years ago. It was a flour mill, used for making bread by Christian monks who lived in the area’s monasteries around the present village of Tzippori (Sepphoris).  Inside the ruins of the building, officials from the Kishon Drainage and Streams Authority found shreds of Israeli flags that were ripped and burned. The building’s walls, doorposts, windows and entryways were damaged, officials said. The site, which is a highly important archaeological and tourist site, is visited by thousands of Israelis each year.

Vandals… Wretches. With thanks to Antonio for the tipand the link.

For Your Sunday Morning