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Friday, March 8, 2013
Look beyond our little bit of Virginia
Last Sunday, there was a discussion at my church of the impending selection the following Saturday of the next Episcopal bishop of Southwestern Virginia. Assembled members of the congregation were told that, in whittling down 40 prospective candidates to a final five, the first qualification was that each candidate must want to serve in Southwestern Virginia rather than just wanting to be a bishop any old place.
There was scattered applause to this announcement, which in Episcopal circles is equivalent to an audience eruption. And at first, the idea seemed reasonable to me also, but then it began to bother me - this concern for a local rather than a universal connection. It was almost anti-missionary.
It seems to me that Christians should be interested in some kind of transformation rather than in a cozy preservation of the status quo.
Although I am 80 years old, I still want to be changed somehow each day, to hold my walking stick with a better hand. And I wondered what was happening in my little congregation to that gospel imperative, "make all things new."
'Love thy neighbor' includes everyone
Re: Celebrations, Sunday, March 3:
What a warm feeling I had while looking at the happy faces of two women and reading about their same-sex marriage in Baltimore. Then, realizing the state of Virginia prohibits same-sex marriage, primarily for religious reasons, I felt a surge of sadness.
What will religious people say when they approach the gates of heaven and are greeted by gay and lesbian angels? Will their discrimination against gays and lesbians permit entry into heaven?
Think of your life after dying and live a life that leads to heaven, or be prepared for the alternative. This living should support laws that do not deny the rights of gays and lesbians.
Let us live a life of peace and love for all people.
JOHN R. PHILLIPS
There is no third way in abortion debate
Re: Dianne Roberson's "More than two positions on abortion," Feb. 27 commentary:
Abortion and helping the poor are two different issues. Both conservatives and liberals have compassion for the poor; we just differ on how to help (local charities vs. more government). There's no third group in the debate, only variations of disagreement. Roberson seems OK with abortions; therefore, she must be pro-choice.
Her assumption that the pro-life position is based solely on religious grounds is false: I'm against abortions after the ninth week because at the 10th week, the unborn has a central nervous system with active brainwaves. I challenge Roberson to watch "The Silent Scream" documentary. I don't oppose the morning-after pill, which terminates only an embryo long before a brain is developed (no brain, no pain).
The Roe v. Wade decision is fiat law: The 10th Amendment declared, "The Powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people." Like gambling and prostitution, abortion should be left to the states or settled by our representatives with a constitutional amendment, not by a handful of cronies in black robes.
ARLAN K. WADE
Save ourselves; end fossil fuel use
There have been a number of books proposing ways we can eliminate all fossil fuels, the most notable being Amory Loving's "Reinventing Fire." This should be required reading for all congressmen and senators. (Those who can't read should have it read to them.)
Loving demonstrates how to reduce heating and cooling costs of homes and businesses to nearly zero. He has built a house at 8,000 feet in the Rockies that uses no outside heating or cooling, and grows bananas in his greenhouse.
He also has built an all-plastic car that weighs 1,200 pounds, seats five and gets 125 mpg as a hybrid, but can be made a bio-diesel or all-electric. This plastic car is safer in a crash than an equivalent-size steel car.
This and other books show us ways we can stop burning all fossil fuel by 2050. We can reduce our electricity need by 80 percent, and produce all of it by wind, solar wave and hydro.
If we ended dependency on oil, militant Islamists would all go bankrupt. This would also mitigate the effects of global warming.
Save the world and save trillions of dollars.
Weather JournalWarmth next 2 days hits icy wall