Bye Bye Blanco

A Louisiana citizens group has launched a petition drive aimed at recalling their state's Governor Kathleen Blanco for what the group is calling her lack of leadership in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Kit Landry is the founder of Responsible and Effective Citizen Action for Leadership in Louisiana, or RECALL. She says Governor Blanco has been more concerned with politics than with taking care of the state's disaster victims. "Every time I saw our governor speaking, it was just about what had happened to her voter base," Landry says, "and it seemed to me that she was more concerned about her political future than the future of the citizens that were devastated by floods in the New Orleans area and southern Louisiana. I was absolutely appalled." Also, the activist questions the governor's decision to take an entourage to the Netherlands. "Why do our governor and 50 other people have to go to the Netherlands to check out flood protection?" she asks. "If I have a problem with plumbing at my house, I don't go to the plumber's house. I have the plumber come here." According to the RECALL spokeswoman, the citizens of Louisiana are no longer going to tolerate a lack of leadership in the Governor's office. "We as citizens have a responsibility to say to our elected officials that if you do not have the leadership capabilities to do what needs to be done to help our citizens," Landry asserts, "then we as citizens have a responsibility to send a message to you that you will not serve in that capacity."

Gaming board worker charged in fatal fall

A Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board employee was charged with homicide yesterday after he told police he accidentally dropped his girlfriend out a 23rd-story window over the weekend.

Rep. Clymer trying to kill or curb slots law

The General Assembly's biggest opponent of slot machines, Rep. Paul Clymer, hasn't stopped trying to pull the plug on Act 71 of 2004, the law that's set to bring 14 slots casinos to Pennsylvania. Read More

Supreme Court Backs Abortion Protesters

The Supreme Court dealt a setback Tuesday to abortion clinics in a two-decade-old legal fight over abortion protests, ruling that federal extortion and racketeering laws cannot be used to ban demonstrations.

Anti-abortion groups brought the appeal after the 7th Circuit had asked a trial judge to determine whether a nationwide injunction could be supported by charges that protesters had made threats of violence absent a connection with robbery or extortion

The 8-0 decision ends a case that the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had kept alive despite a 2003 decision by the high court that lifted a nationwide injunction on anti-abortion groups led by Joseph Scheidler and others.

Writing for the majority, Justice Stephen Breyer said Congress did not intend to create "a freestanding physical violence offense" in the federal extortion law known as the Hobbs Act.
Social activists and the AFL-CIO had sided with anti-abortion groups in arguing that similar lawsuits and injunctions could be used to thwart their efforts to change public policy or agitate for better wages and working conditions.

Associated Press

Dubai ports firm enforces Israel boycott

The parent company of a Dubai-based firm at the center of a political storm in the US over the purchase of American ports participates in the Arab boycott against Israel, The Jerusalem Post has learned.

The firm, Dubai Ports World, is seeking control over six major US ports, including those in New York, Miami, Philadelphia and Baltimore. It is entirely owned by the Government of Dubai via a holding company called the Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation (PCZC), which consists of the Dubai Port Authority, the Dubai Customs Department and the Jebel Ali Free Zone Area.

Jerusalem Post

Salvation: Lost, Found and Unsure

Some preach that all you have to do to achieve salvation is to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, and your salvation is assured. All you have to do id make that commitment and no matter what you do, you can be certain that you will go to Heaven. They will also tell you it is an impossible to ever lose your salvation.

After much discussion and study, one finds that belief is not only not Biblical, it is in reality a sin of presumption.

Scripture teaches that one's final salvation depends on the state of the soul at death. As Jesus himself tells us, "He who endures to the end will be saved" (Matt. 24:13; cf. 25:31-46). One who dies in the state of friendship with God (the state of grace) will go to heaven. The one who dies in a state of enmity and rebellion against God (the state of mortal sin) will go to hell.

We know Adam and Eve, who received God's grace in a manner unmerited did demerit it and lost grace not only for themselves but for us as well (cf. also Rom. 11:17-24). While the idea that what is received without merit cannot be lost by demerit may have a poetic charm, it does not stand up to what is in the Bible. "See then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God's kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness; otherwise you too will be cut off" (Rom. 11:22; see also Heb. 10:26-29, 2 Pet. 2:20-21).

So with all this, can anyone really know if they are saved? Places where Scripture speaks of our ability to know that we are abiding in grace are important and must be taken seriously. But they do not promise that we will be protected from self-deception on this matter.

Before you start to live every moment be in terror of losing your salvation, now that you know it is possible to lose salvation through mortal sin, realize you can be confident of your present salvation. This is one of the chief reasons why God gave us the sacraments to provide visible assurances that he is invisibly providing us with his grace.

Paul, writing at the end of his life, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day" (2 Tim. 4:7-8). But earlier in life, even Paul did not claim an infallible assurance, either of his present justification or of his remaining in grace in the future.

We can, if our lives display a pattern of perseverance and spiritual fruit, have not only a confidence in our present state of grace but also of our future perseverance with God. Yet we cannot have an infallible certitude of our own salvation.

As the Bible says, we are already saved (Rom. 8:24, Eph. 2:5-8), but we also being saved (1 Cor. 1:8, 2 Cor. 2:15, Phil. 2:12), and we can have hope to be saved (Rom. 5:9-10, 1 Cor. 3:12-15). Like the apostle Paul we are to work out our salvation in fear and trembling (Phil. 2:12), with hopeful confidence in the promises of Christ (Rom. 5:2, 2 Tim. 2:11-13).

Port Authority requests record $191 million

Port Authority requests record $191 million in transit funding
The Port Authority is asking the federal government for a record $191 million this year, including $70 million that would be "flexed" from road and bridge work to mass transit to balance the agency's budget.

Ted Kennedy Wants Windmills Killed

Self-proclaimed alternative energy proponent Sen. Ted Kennedy has strongly opposed an environmentally friendly "wind farm” off the coast of Massachusetts – and now it appears Kennedy will have his way.

A proposal before Congress would limit the construction of wind turbines and most likely doom plans for the Cape Wind Project, the nation’s first offshore wind farm.

There is a joke there about Kennedy and a wind farm but I leave that up to you!

Pope says embryos have rights from conception

Pope Benedict on Monday reaffirmed Catholic teaching that life begins at the moment of conception, saying embryos are "sacred and inviolable" even before they become implanted in a mother's uterus.

The Pope made his comments in an address to the Pontifical Academy for Life, which is hosting an international congress on scientific aspects and bioethical considerations of "The Human Embryo Before Implantation".

Speaking in Italian, the Pope said the Church had always proclaimed the "sacred and inviolable character of every human life, from its conception to its natural end."
He added: "This moral judgment is valid from the start of the life of an embryo, even before it is implanted in the maternal womb."

By making such a defense of life, the Pope appeared to be trying to cut short any debate that the period between conception and implantation could be seen as a time for legitimate experimentation or manipulation on embryos.

He did not make a distinction between embryos created naturally and those generated outside the womb through in-vitro fertilisation.

The Catholic Church holds that in-vitro fertilisation is morally wrong but scientific advances have presented it with a minefield of ethical issues regarding embryos created outside the womb for artificial implantation.



From the story: “As for Osama bin Laden, Mr. Rahmatullah called the Saudi fugitive a "guest" of his government and said it hadn't been proved that bin Laden was linked to any terrorist acts, despite his indictment in the U.S. for planning the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. He said that if the embassy bombings were terrorist acts, then so was the Clinton administration's firing cruise missiles into his country in an attempt to kill bin Laden. "You killed 19 innocent people," he told us.”



From the commentary: “I commissioned the cartoons in response to several incidents of self-censorship in Europe caused by widening fears and feelings of intimidation in dealing with issues related to Islam. And I still believe that this is a topic that we Europeans must confront, challenging moderate Muslims to speak out.” (Contra Costa Times) From Newsweek: “Welcome to the end of tolerance.” (Newsweek)


From the story: “ The Bush administration will conduct a highly unusual second review of potential security risks in a business deal it previously approved for a United Arab Emirates-based company to take over significant operations at six leading U.S. ports.”

ABC News

Marriage activists headed for Colorado showdown

Two of the West's most influential power brokers are headed for a turf war in November over Colorado's proposed constitutional amendment affirming traditional marriage.

On the left is Tim Gill, the homosexual software multimillionaire and Democratic activist who is dedicating his fortune earned as founder of Quark Inc., to advancing homosexual rights.

On the right is James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family in Colorado Springs and the go-to guy for religious conservatives on issues ranging from stem-cell research to Supreme Court nominees.


Pre-birth images Would be Required in GA

This week, a GA Senate committee approved Senate Bill 429, a measure sponsored by Sen. Nancy Schaefer (R-Turnerville) that would require abortion providers to perform a sonogram or ultrasound on women seeking abortion, then give them a choice about whether to view the images. The committee approved an exception for women whose pregnancy was the result or rape or incest. Some research studies show that 65 to 75 percent of pregnant women who view sonograms before deciding about an abortion decide to carry out their pregnancies.

The committee also gave the green light to Senate Bill 77, a measure that would allow for the prosecution of anyone who causes the death of an unborn child, regardless of the stage of pregnancy.

Georgia's is one of several legislatures considering abortion restrictions this year. The South Dakota Senate this week passed the nation's most far-reaching ban on abortion. The measure would make it a felony for doctors to perform any abortion except to save the life of a pregnant woman. The bill must gain final approval from the House before it can be signed into law by the governor, who is opposed to abortion. A lawsuit is expected challenging the law's constitutionality under the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision.

You Can't Touch This Blog

I have no idea why I'm posting this but I am.
Put on your baggie pants, 80's music and dance on over to the MC Hammer Blog.
Yes, I'm serious

Port Points

The U.S. has 361 ports on our 95,000 mile shoreline servicing 7500 commercial ships that make over 50,000 port calls, offloading over 7 million containers each year.

After looking over this for a few days my own comclusion is the transfer of management from a London based company to Dubai Ports World of six major ports is a bad idea. America’s seaports are very strategic and security sensitive assets and already quite vulnerable to terror attacks. However, there are mony other reasons I'm not supporting the President on this one.

1. The UAE openly supported the Taliban in Afghanistan.

2.Ten of the 19 September 11th hijackers carried identification documents from or acquired through Dubai.

3. Marwan al-Sheehi, the terrorist who plunged the United Airlines passenger aircraft into the World Trade Center south tower was born in the UAE.

4. Following the attacks on September 11, the U.S. Treasury Department complained about the lack of cooperation by the UAE to trace bin Laden’s bank accounts.

5. The FBI confirmed that some of the funding for the attacks on 9/11 was funneled through the UAE banking system.

6. The UAE has yet to institute laws that would prohibit money laundering.

7. The UAE is actively engaged in censorship of any ideology that is inconsistent with the tenets of Islam.

Just because Dubai has a Hard Rock Cafe, that does not make them pro-Western? They just like pricey cheeseburgers.



Near the bottom of the first page of the article, a quick mention that the writers are “domestic partners,” then this: "The more they explored the idea, the more they realized polygamists could embody universal and admirable qualities that define the best family love. "We're very much populists in what we're going for. We don't like cynical…. We want people to fall in love with these characters and to root for this family."

LA Times

Abortion Imported in South Dakota

South Dakota's Senate has now joined the House in the capital city of Pierre to challenge Roe v. Wade.

South Dakota's new law banning abortion would allow doctors to terminate a pregnancy only if necessary to save the mother's life!

Too often in Congress, arguments fall on deaf ears as partisan politics prevail. The states are great laboratories of democracy. While many will assail the actions of the South Dakota legislature, their new law reflects a pro-life state. The fact that no South Dakota doctors are willing to perform abortions speaks volumes about the social stigma attached to abortion.

Those who perform abortions there are flown in from Minnesota. South Dakota's actions make clear that 33 years after Roe v. Wade overturned the abortion laws of all 50 states; Americans have still not accepted abortion-on-demand.

Skate with Kenny

Join me for a family skate night at Blade Runners in Warrendale, 7:30 - 9:30 pm, this Saturday night (2/25).

You and the kids can skate to your favorite Christian music. We'll have fun, prizes (no purchase necessary) and more. Youth group leaders can win a free skate night for their whole Youth Group.

You've been watching the Olympics all week on TV. Here's your chance to try out your moves in front of people who probably won't laugh at you (at least not a lot!)

Admission reduced to just $4 per person, plus skate rental.

Call for more information: 724-772-0259.
Hope to meet you there in person Saturday night!

- Kenny Woods
101.5 WORD-FM, Pittsburgh

Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center

CHRISTIANS FOR FAIR WITNESS ON THE MIDDLE EAST will hold a Press Conference to warn against the anti-Israel and anti-Semitic messages that may be conveyed by the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center (Sabeel) at its conference at First United Methodist Church in Pittsburgh beginning Friday February 24.
Sabeel is a Palestinian Ecumenical group that has held regional conferences all over the United States and describes its mission as finding a just peace in Palestine/Israel.
“Sabeel however, has a history of demonizing the State of Israel rather than truly seeking a just peace,” says Sr. Ruth Lautt, O.P. “Our goal is to warn Christian leaders about the dangers of using Sabeel’s dishonest narrative about the Arab/Israeli conflict. This is not Christian witness. This is propaganda that may lead to a dangerous weakening of the perceived right of Israel to exist and will ultimately divide our churches.”

WHEN: Friday, February 24, 2006
TIME: 10:00 AM (Continental Breakfast Served)
WHERE: Pittsburgh Hilton
The Heinz Room
600 Commonwealth Place, Pittsburgh, PA

Dexter Van Zile, United Church of Christ Layman and Director of the Judeo-Christian Alliance, will chair the conference.

Sr. Ruth Lautt, O.P., Esq. is the National Director of Fair Witness and a practicing attorney in New York.
Sr. Ruth will put the Arab/Israeli conflict into historical context.

Rev. Jim Loughran, S.A. is a Roman Catholic Priest and the Director of the Graymoor Ecumenical & Interreligious Institute.
Fr. Loughran will discuss the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church on Jews and Judaism in Nostra Aetate and other church documents and how these relate to Israel.

Dr. Earl H. Tilford, Jr., is an Elder in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and a Professor of History at Grove City College in Grove City, Pennsylvania.
Dr. Tilford will discuss the Jewish struggle for a homeland and freedom of religion and democracy in Israel.

Welcome "Santourm Blog"

I want to welcome Alex and "Santourm Blog" to PowerBlog! From time to time you will see articles cross-posted on both site. Santorum Blog has been added to the links section as well. Stop over, check it out and welcome

Pro-Israel Christians join forces

Pro-Israeli Christian groups operating in the United States have decided to form an umbrella organization that will engage in lobbying efforts in Washington beginning this coming summer.

The organization, made up of mostly evangelical groups, will also open offices across the country, hold events in support of Israel, offer political, financial and public relations support, and work to strengthen the strategic alliance between the U.S. and Israel.

This umbrella organization is expected to comprise some 30-35 million American evangelists who have until now operated separately, and will act similarly to the way the Jewish lobby operates in the U.S.


You've Got to Earn It

By The Associated Press, The Patriot-News (Harrisburg)

Stripped of the credits they once earned for reducing welfare caseloads over the past decade, officials in Pennsylvania and dozens of other states are searching for ways to fill rigid new quotas on how many welfare recipients must be engaged in work, training or other activities.

Read More

Ports for Sale: More Disturbing News

It has come to my attention that there exists a direct link between the royal family of the United Arab Emirates, Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda.

This information comes from a March 25, 2004 report from the India-based which reported on the verbal testimony given before the 9/11 Commission by former DIRCIA George Tenet. This has not yet been given the full attention it deserves, and in light of this would be reason enough to immediately halt all negotiations for Dubai Ports World to gain control of eight critical US port facilities.

Director Tenet testified on March 24, 2004 that a mission targeting Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan was aborted because had the mission proceeded half of the royal family of the UAE would have been wiped out.

Here is the relevant excerpt of that report:
UAE royals, bin Laden's saviours
March 25, 2004 12:04 IST

The Central Intelligence Agency did not target Al Qaeda chief Osama bin laden once as he had the royal family of the United Arab Emirates with him in Afghanistan, the agency's director, George Tenet, told the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks on the United States on Thursday.

Had the CIA targeted bin Laden, half the royal family would have been wiped out as well, he said.

Read Report here

It has come to my attention that there exists a direct link between the royal family of the United Arab Emirates, Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda. This information comes from a March 25, 2004 report from the India-based which reported on the verbal testimony given before the 9/11 Commission by former DIRCIA George Tenet. This has not yet been given the full attention it deserves, and in light of this would be reason enough to immediately halt all negotiations for Dubai Ports World to gain control of eight critical US port facilities.I’ll make this short and to the point. Director Tenet testified on March 24, 2004 that a mission targeting Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan was aborted because had the mission proceeded half of the royal family of the UAE would have been wiped out.Here is the relevant excerpt of that report:UAE royals, bin Laden's savioursMarch 25, 2004 12:04 ISTThe Central Intelligence Agency did not target Al Qaeda chief Osama bin laden once as he had the royal family of the United Arab Emirates with him in Afghanistan, the agency's director, George Tenet, told the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks on the United States on Thursday.Had the CIA targeted bin Laden, half the royal family would have been wiped out as well, he said.

Director Tenet went on in his testimony to state that U.S. Predator drone unmaned aircraft flew their first mission armed with Hellfire missiles, with the permission of the “host nation” (most likely Pakistan), on October 7, 2001. Logically the conclusion could be drawn that a large portion of the royal family of the United Arab Emirates was with Osama bin Laden when he was targeted in Afghanistan during the immediate aftermath of September 11, 2001.These are America’s allies?The questions which must now be openly answered by the Bush Administration are patently obvious. Exactly how much due process did the US government engage in concluding that the UAE deserved to be rewarded as an American ally in the Global War on Terrorism? When did the Islamist UAE royals switch sides in this war, and notwithstanding the Islamic practice of al-Taqiyya (dissimulation), where are the American people to believe their loyalties lie today?

Director Tenet went on in his testimony to state that U.S. Predator drone unmaned aircraft flew their first mission armed with Hellfire missiles, with the permission of the “host nation” (most likely Pakistan), on October 7, 2001. Logically the conclusion could be drawn that a large portion of the royal family of the United Arab Emirates was with Osama bin Laden when he was targeted in Afghanistan during the immediate aftermath of September 11, 2001.These are America’s allies?

The questions which must now be openly answered by the Bush Administration are patently obvious. Exactly how much due process did the US government engage in concluding that the UAE deserved to be rewarded as an American ally in the Global War on Terrorism? When did the Islamist UAE royals switch sides in this war, and notwithstanding the Islamic practice of al-Taqiyya (dissimulation), where are the American people to believe their loyalties lie today?

Sanitation Supervisor Cleans Up

The eight co-workers at a Nebraska food processing plant get $15.5 million each after taxes are withheld from their Powerball winnings. David Gehle, 53, is a sanitation supervisor who's continued to work because he doesn't want to leave the plant in a bind. He's been there 20 years. (Lincoln Journal Star)

CBS Records $9B Loss

CBS Corp. reported a loss of $9.1 billion in the fourth quarter on hefty charges to write down the value of its radio and television businesses, the media company reported Thursday.

CBS was reporting earnings for the first time as a separate company since its separation from Viacom Inc. was completed at the beginning of the year. CBS reported the fourth quarter as if it were already a separate entity.

On that basis, CBS had a net loss amounting to $6 per share for the three months ended Dec. 31, weighed down by charges to write down the fair market value of its radio and television properties. The valuations of radio stations in particular have suffered in recent years due to stagnant revenues and higher costs.


Please Help

Planting a church in China can be accomplished through your generous gift of just $75. 101.5 WORD-FM is teaming up with Trans World Radio to reach people throughout China with programs that introduce Christ, edify and disciple believers, and train up the next generation of pastors.

The "home church kit" consists of a radio for Chinese Christians to pick up the Trans World Radio programs being beamed into mainland China from Guam, program guides, a Mandarin Bible, and Bible study aides. It allows these brothers and sisters to learn more about God in their homes, without having to meet in public and face persecution.

To be a vital part of what God is doing in China, call our operators, toll-free,
1-866-496-7336 (2/22-2/24, 3-6pm) or 800-464-9414 (all other hours).
Or, click here to make a pledge on line. Be sure to tune in to 101.5 WORD-FM for additional information and stories about the good work of Trans World Radio!

Dear Powerball

Dear Powerball,

I heard some say on the show that C.S. Lewis became a Catholic before he died. Is this true?
Was Lewis a Roman Catholic? Didn't he believe in Purgatory?

I've looked into this and the caller may have been thinking about G.K. Chesterton. Chesterton did become a Roman Catholic, but I have never heard or read that Lewis did.

As far I can tell, Lewis was and remained an Anglican (Church of England). He was critical of some specific aspects of the Catholic faith; on the other hand, in letters he defends the idea of Purgatory as a necessary "cleaning up time" for the soul before entering heaven. He did acknowledge that the doctrine was open to abuse.

"I hope," he writes "that when the tooth of life is drawn and I am coming round, a voice will say "Rinse your mouth out with this." This will be purgatory."

In the essay Christian Reunion he states that the real disagreement between Catholics and Protestants is not about any particular belief, but about the source and nature of doctrine and authority:

"The real reason I cannot be in communion with you is ... that to accept your Church means not to accept a given body of doctrine but to accept in advance any doctrine that your Church hereafter produces."

When Lewis was working on Mere Christianity, he had Book II vetted by Anglican, Roman Catholic, Methodist, and Presbyterian clergymen, to avoid any hint of denominational bias creeping in. In a telling passage in Allegory of Love he recognises the potential flaws in both the Catholic and the Protestant paths:

"When Catholicism goes bad it becomes the world-old, world-wide religion of amulets and holy places and priest craft; Protestantism, in its corresponding decay, becomes a vague mist of ethical platitudes."

Trib's Colin McNickle's Catholic Rant


Catholic League president Bill Donohue issued the following remarks today:

“Today I e-mailed Colin McNickle, the editorial page editor of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, requesting permission to reprint an article by Don Collins of February 10, and a reply by Bob Lockwood of February 14 (when he asked for more info about the Catholic League, I directed him to our website and mentioned that Lockwood was a member of the board of directors of the Catholic League); the two columns, I said, would appear in the April edition of our monthly journal, Catalyst. Then came his reply: ‘Permission denied.’

“Permission denied? Why? Because Lockwood ripped apart Collins’ anti-Catholic rant? (Collins is on the board of FAIR, an anti-immigrant and notoriously anti-Catholic group.) Here are some examples of what Collins wrote:

U.S. policy is being shaped by ‘Rome and these bishops’; ‘We now have five male Catholic justices on the U.S. Supreme Court,’ thus creating an unseemly ‘concentration of power’; ‘Samuel Alito has been confirmed and installed, and this behind-the-scenes plan [of the Catholic Church] should get much of the credit’; the bishops are ‘infiltrating and manipulating the American democratic process at national, state and local levels’; and the bishops have ‘taken over the Republican Party.’ Has anyone told Howard Dean?

“McNickle did not like it when Lockwood said he should be ‘ashamed’ of himself for publishing the Collins piece, and said so on February 19. Indeed, the man who denied me permission to reprint the Collins article had the nerve to say that he would never be ashamed to print ‘points of view contrary to the conventional wisdom,’ because to do so would mean ‘the beginning of the end of a robust free press.’

“We now know what makes the Tribune Review jumpy—Catholicism and free speech. Unfortunately for them, I have a big mouth, and they can’t censor that.”

[Contact McNickle at]

Christian settles with Allstate

A Christian former employee of Allstate has settled a lawsuit with the company he had filed claiming he was fired because of an anti-homosexual, anti-same-sex marriage column he wrote on his own time.

As WorldNetDaily reported, J. Matt Barber was a manager in Allstate's Corporate Security Division, its investigative arm, at the Fortune 100 company's headquarters in Northbrook, Ill. Besides working for the insurance provider, Barber was and is a professional heavyweight boxer, a jazz drummer and a Web commentator. His columns have appeared on, and others.

With the help of the Christian Law Association and David Gibbs III, who represented Terri Schiavo's family in the final weeks of her life, Barber sued Allstate in federal court. That suit has been settled out of court, and neither side, per a confidentiality agreement, are saying much about it.

Port Deal Affects 8 Ports, Not 6

Despite outcry over the transfer of contract services for six major U.S. seaports to Dubai Ports World, a company owned and operated by Dubai's ruling Maktoum family (Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is one of the seven emirates that make up the UAE) in the United Arab Emirates, it seems that too few realize that the operations at two other major ports will be affected by this transfer.

In addition to the well publicized list of the six major ports: New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia, two vital ports in Texas would also have a strategic part of their operations managed by DP World.

Based on a contract extension involving the United States Department of Defense, DP World would also oversee and manage the flow of U.S. military assets through the ports in Beaumont and Corpus Christie, Texas, bringing the total of affected ports to eight rather than six. Again, contract services at these ports directly involve the oversight and management of U.S. military assets by an Islamic owned company.

There are at least two troubling ties to the White House in this deal. The first involves David SANBORN, director of European and Latin American operations for DP World.

Last month, SANBORN was appointed by President George Bush to head the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD), reporting directly to Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta. MARAD is charged with strengthening the U.S. maritime transportation system, including infrastructure, industry and labor, to meet the economic and security needs of the Nation.
MARAD is also responsible for the training and certification of maritime security professionals.

The second link to the White House is U.S. Treasury Secretary John SNOW, who was chairman of the CSX rail firm that sold its international port operations to DP World in 2004 for $1.15 billion. It was also John Snow’s agency that heads the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS) that signed off on the $6.8 billion contract service transfer to Dubai Ports World.

Meanwhile, those who dare question the legitimacy of the change in service providers from London-based Peninsula and Oriental Steam Navigation Company ("P & O") to Dubai Ports World can expect to be called Anti-Arab and anti-Islamic by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC).

In a press release dated yesterday, the ADC, whose Midwest Regional Director, Imad Hamad is an open supporter of Islamic terrorist groups, is titled "Anti Arabism Now at a Port Near You."

Bikers Battle Bigots

Wearing vests covered in military patches, a band of motorcyclists rolls around the country from one soldier's funeral to another, cheering respectfully to overshadow jeers from church protesters.

They call themselves the Patriot Guard Riders, and they are more than 5,000 strong, forming to counter anti-gay protests held by the Rev. Fred Phelps at military funerals.

Phelps believes American deaths in Iraq are divine punishment for a country that he says harbors homosexuals. His protesters carry signs thanking God for so-called IEDs — explosives that are a major killer of soldiers in Iraq.

The bikers shield the families of dead soldiers from the protesters, and overshadow the jeers with patriotic chants and a sea of red, white and blue flags.

Shirley Phelps-Roper, a daughter of Fred Phelps and an attorney for the Topeka, Kan.-based church, said neither state laws nor the Patriot Guard can silence their message that God killed the soldiers because they fought for a country that embraces homosexuals.

"The scriptures are crystal clear that when God sets out to punish a nation, it is with the sword. An IED is just a broken-up sword," Phelps-Roper said. "Since that is his weapon of choice, our forum of choice has got to be a dead soldier's funeral."

Richard Wilbur, a retired police detective, said his Indiana Patriot Guard group only comes to funerals if invited by family. He said he has no problem with protests against the war but sees no place for objectors at a family's final goodbye to a soldier.

MY TWO CENTS: This guy (whom I've spoken to before) Fred Phelps does not in any way deserve the title Reverend nor Christian. We are to speak the truth in love. The actions of Mr. Phelps and his group have done more harm then good to spreading the gospel.

Bob Jones Dosen't Like Starbucks

Attention student and teachers.... Starbucks coffee will no longer be served as wake-up juice at Greenville's Bob Jones University.

Why you ask? The school's constituency began to object to Starbucks' stance on gays several months ago.

BJU spokesman Jonathan Pait said "They were supportive of homosexual events and causes. That would be a problem for our constituency." The issue surfaced from quotes on a coffee cup Starbucks sells from a man who supports a gay lifestyle. The university has a longstanding stance against homosexuality among other things. (That's a whole different story)

Pait said saying Starbucks coffee "was banned" is too strong. He said it's permissible to bring the coffee on campus.

The Greenville News

Santourm Speaks Out on US Seaports

In most cases Sen. Rick Santourm will be right in line with President Bush. Not in this case.
In a release from his campaign, Sen Santourm said this:

Each and every day, the security of Pennsylvania and our nation is at risk. Islamic extremists preyed on our country and our way of life in the barbaric terrorist attacks of 9/11, and we have spent the time since then fighting to ensure such attacks never happen again.

That's why I'm concerned any time it appears as if we're not taking the terrorist threat seriously enough. As I write you, the control of six major U.S. seaports -- including the Port of Philadelphia -- could be outsourced to the United Arab Emirates, a nation that was implicated in the events of 9/11.

How can we allow this to happen?

The answer is: We can't.

That's why, after learning of this troubling situation last week, I took immediate action to call for an investigation and a stop to this transfer of control of our ports:

Last Thursday, I requested that the President intervene and use his authority under the current law to prevent this sale; I have requested that the U.S. Senate investigate the matter to determine if and how the application of the law needs to reflect the realities of a post-9/11 world, and; I began discussions with a bipartisan group of Congressmen to determine what we could do if the administration doesn't rescind the contract.

I can not sit by while the safety and security we have fought so hard for is sacrificed, and right here in our state at the Port of Philadelphia. Please join me in fighting for the safety of these critical entry ports to our nation -- write letters to your local news editors, call talk radio, and please forward this message to everyone you know.

Senator Rick Santorum

Here's a Question

I've been thinking about one of our show callers. We were talking about unity and he said as long as a person believes in Jesus then it does not matter what denomination you choose. I don't want another I'm right, you're wrong debate, but I do want to pose a question to all of you.

At what point does one become a Christian? Is it when you accept Christ, or do you have to spend some time learning and understanding Scripture? Is it instant or is it a process? The same question could be asked about salvation.

Could it be when you are baptized, even though often young children are often baptized? Are we to just self-declare ourselves "Christians" because we say some prayer?

There are many "Christians" who agree on very little with other "Christians". So what makes a Christian a Christian? I'd like to hear (read) your thoughts.

Massachusetts tells Catholic Church permit gay adoption reported on February 20, 2006:

Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and a top government leader have told a group of bishops that their request that Catholic institutions be exempt from placing foster children with same-sex parents will be denied.

“My understanding is that any exemption would require legislation and would not be something I would be authorized to do on a personal basis,” Romney said, according to a Boston Globe report. He has in the past indicated that he is opposed to same-sex “marriage.”

House chairman of the joint committee on the judiciary, Eugene O’Flaherty, said he opposes the Bishop’s request. He claimed there is little support among legislators for the move, insisting that lawmakers already have more than enough work to do. “This is a very divisive issue that I don’t see making it onto the agenda for debate,” O’Flaherty stated. “We have enough on our plate already. I would say there would not be an appetite to entertain that,” he added.

In compliance with the commonwealth’s so-called antidiscrimination laws, the Catholic adoption agency, Catholic Charities of Boston, has already placed children with same-sex couples over the past 20 years.

The bishops’ request was in stark contrast to the wishes of the agency itself, which voted unanimously in December to uphold the practice of placing children in homosexual homes.
Board members expressed “shock” to learn that a potential legal challenge of the antidiscrimination law from the bishop’s would be paid for from the budget of the agency. “I’m shocked,” said board member Donna DePrisco. “I find it hard to believe.” In what may appear to be an ulterior motive on the part of the bishop’s group, one anonymous board member said many on the board would resign if the bishop’s go ahead with their plan.

Catholic Charities of Boston said it has placed 13 of 720 adopted children with same-sex couples in the past 20 years.

Cardinal Alfonso López Trujillo, Vatican head of the Pontifical Council for the Family, told Fides news service in May that allowing same sex couples to adopt children, “would destroy the child’s future, it would be an act of moral violence against the child.”

See related coverage:
Top Vatican Cardinal: Gay Marriage is "A Crime Which represents the Destruction of the World"

Experts Worldwide Find Gay Adoption Harmful for Children

Scot Cardinal: Gay Adoption Makes Children “Guinea Pigs in Some Distorted Social Experiment”

Contact the archdiocese:
Contact Catholic Charities Greater Boston:
Labouré Center
275 West Broadway
South Boston, MA 02127
P: 617.268.9670
F: 617.268.3088


I'm sick of the cartoon story! I don't care who drew what with whom and who got all ticked off over it.

I'm all for free press but The University of Toronto's Victoria College student newspaper is really pushing things a bit far in my opinion.

"The Strand" has used the controversy surrounding the cartoons ridiculing Islam to bash Christianity and Islam simultaneously. Accompanying an article on the cartoon controversy, the paper published a cartoon of its own depicting Jesus smooching with Mohammed in the "Tolerance Tunnel".

Now before someone says that I'm only offended when it's Christianity that is the target, think again. I'm not offended. I think it's in bad taste but still not offended. However, I am sick of people who try to outdo the last cartoon.

Can we go back to Archie and Jughead for a bit and leave Jesus and Mohammed out of the funny papers for awhile?

Mandatory abortion proposed in Holland

A health official in the Netherlands has called for a debate on the idea of forced abortion and contraception to deal with what she sees as a crisis of unwanted children.

Alderman Marianne van den Anker of the Leefbaar Rotterdam Party wants specifically to target communities of Antilleans and Arubans where she sees the biggest problems of unwanted children.

Her comments have stirred protest by a health foundation working with those communities in Rotterdam. The group, which called the comments degrading, is asking Mayor Ivo Opstelten and other politicians to distance themselves from Van den Anker's views.

Van den Anker is a mother of two (apparently wanted) children and the official in charge of Rotterdam's health and security portfolios.

Top Teacher, Not Certified

Pittsburgh Public Schools Superintendent Mark Roosevelt has put Diane Briars, the district's top math and science officer, on leave, saying she didn't have the state certification needed for her job.

Diane Briars, 54, of Fox Chapel, a nationally known math expert who defended the district's Everyday Mathematics curriculum against criticism from some school board members, is being paid during the leave, which began last week.

In a written statement, Mr. Roosevelt said the board will decide Dr. Briars' fate.
"Dr. Briars has not been successful in obtaining the necessary certification to continue in her supervisory role over the district's mathematics staff and programs," he said. "We regret that this action has become necessary."

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Toledo-Area Men Arrested for Terrorist Activity

federal grand jury has indicted three Toledo-area men for terrorist activities. Prosecutors say the three conspired to wage a "holy war" against the United States and coalition forces in the middle east. The indictment was unsealed Monday.

The U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez is expected to release more details at a news conference this afternoon in Washington D.C.

According to the indictment from the US Attorney's office, the suspects are Mohammad Zaki Amawi, Marwan Othman El-Hindi, and Wassim Mazloum. The indictment says all three were living in the Toledo area. Amawi is a citizen of the US and also a citizen of Jordan. El-Hindi is a naturalized American citizen who was born in Jordan. Mazloum is a legal permanent resident of the US, who came here from Lebanon.

The indictment also names an unindicted co-conspiratory called "The Trainer," who has U.S. military backround in security, and bodyguard training.


Illinois Newspaper Reverses Position on Pro-life Ads

( - An Illinois newspaper has reversed its ban on pro-life advertisements featuring sonogram images. Full Story

Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Partial Birth Abortion Case

( - The U.S. Supreme Court said on Tuesday it will consider the constitutionality of a 2003 law banning partial birth abortion, a move that thrilled pro-life groups, dismayed abortion rights supporters, and had both sides discussing Justice Samuel Alito's influence on the newly configured court. Full Story

The Ignatius Reformation

The Reformation was not really a surprise to the Catholic church. It had endured many attacks on the faith. It had been steadily battling opposition, resistance, and heresy for over four hundred years prior.

Much of the opposition against the church throughout the fifteenth century involved issues that closely paralleled those splitting the church during the early Reformation. In response to the growth of the Protestant movement, the Catholic Church instituted its a series of reforms that balanced real reform with a strident and conservative reaction to Protestantism. In essence, a Counter-Reformation.

Many aspects of this movement were genuine reforms. Groups formed that included both clergy and lay people and encouraged a return to simple ethical living and piety. Other aspects were conservative reactions to the criticisms leveled against the church.

Pope Paul III in 1545 convened a council in Trent in order to define church doctrine once and for all. The Council of Trent, worked on this problem in three separate sessions from 1545 to 1563.

This council eventually brought reforms in the abuses practiced by the church, such as the selling of indulgences. The Council forced bishops to reside in the region they presided over and also forbad the selling of church offices. All much needed reforms.

they also called for a seminary to be built in every diocese so that church doctrine could be fully and accurately represented. Yet the attack on the faith continued much as it does today.

Just a few years prior, the Society of Jesus or the "Jesuits" was founded by Ignatius of Loyola in the 1530's and recognized officially by the Catholic church a decade later. Ignatius

The basis of the Jesuits was a return to the strictest and most uncompromising obedience to the authority of the church and its ecclesiastical hierarchy. Ignatius wrote in his "Rules for Thinking with the Church": "I will believe that the white that I see is black if the hierarchical Church so defines it."

Ignatius was not blindly following out of ignorance, rather he was a brilliant and intelligent man who led by following. Yet how does one acquire such faith?

In 1521 he was wounded in a battle with the French. While recovering, he read the classics of Christianity and was deeply impressed by the lives of the martyrs and the saints. This instilled in him a deep sense of the value of absolute sacrifice; he underwent a conversion and dedicated his life to the same level of self-sacrifice that he saw in the lives of the saints.

Ignatius believed unless one could perfectly deny one's self and one's feelings, one could never perfectly obey the dictates of the church hierarchy. It's interesting today to see married Pastors with mega churches and million dollar book deals and wonder what Ignatius would have thought about them.

Ignatius by no means had a mega church. After all the concept os self denial is a bit hard to sell. The original Jesuits had only ten members. But by 1630, it had over fifteen thousand members all over the world. Ignatius was dedicated to the extirpation of heretics who refused to obey the church. This included Protestants, and non-Christians as well. The Jesuits became over the next few centuries the most powerfully influential carrier of Western culture and Christianity to the non-Western world.

It would do all Christians good to consider Ignatius Loyola's "Rules for Thinking with the Church"

We must put aside all judgment of our own, and keep the mind ever ready and prompt to obey in all things the true Spouse of Jesus Christ, our holy Mother, the hierarchical Church.

We should praise sacramental confession, the yearly reception of the Most Blessed Sacrament [the Lord's Supper], and praise more highly monthly reception, and still more weekly Communion....

We ought to praise the frequent hearing of Mass, the singing of hymns, psalmody, and long prayers whether in the church or outside....

We must praise highly religious life, virginity, and continency; and matrimony ought not be praised as much as any of these.

We should praise vows of religion, obedience, poverty, chastity, and vows to perform other works of supererogation conducive to perfection....

We should show our esteem for the relics of the saints by venerating them and praying to the saints. We should praise visits to the Station Churches, pilgrimages, indulgences, jubilees, the lighting of candles in churches.

We must praise the regulations of the Church, with regard to fast and abstinence, for example, in Lent, on Ember Days, Vigils, Fridays, and Saturdays.

We ought to praise not only the building and adornment of churches, but also images and veneration of them according to the subject they represent.

Finally, we must praise all the commandments of the Church, and be on the alert to find reasons to defend them, and by no means in order to criticize them.

We should be more ready to approve and praise the orders, recommendations, and way of acting of our superiors than to find fault with them. Though some of the orders, etc., may not have been praiseworthy, yet to speak against them, either when preaching in public or in speaking before the people, would rather be the cause of murmuring and scandal than of profit. As a consequence, the people would become angry with their superiors, whether secular or spiritual. But while it does harm in the absence of our superiors to speak evil of them before the people, it may be profitable to discuss their bad conduct with those who can apply a remedy.

If we wish to proceed securely in all things, we must hold fast to the following principle: What seems to me white, I will believe black if the hierarchical Church so defines. For I must be convinced that in Christ our Lord, the bridegroom, and in His spouse the Church, only one Spirit holds sway, which governs and rules for the salvation of souls.

The Contraception Objection

On September 17, 1983, Pope John Paul II told a group of priests that “contraception is to be judged objectively so profoundly unlawful as never to be, for any reason, justified. To think or to say the contrary is equal to maintaining that, in human life, situations may arise in which it is lawful not to recognize God as God.”

On June 5, 1987, the Holy Father warned clergy and theologians of their grave obligation to faithfully transmit the Church’s teaching on this subject: “A grave responsibility derives from this: those who place themselves in open conflict with the law of God, authentically taught by the Church, guide spouses along a false path. The Church’s teaching on contraception does not belong to the category of matter open to free discussion among theologians. Teaching the contrary amounts to leading the moral consciences of spouses into error.” Pope John Paul II also explained that contraception contradicts and is opposed to true love: “Thus the innate language that expresses the total reciprocal self-giving of husband and wife is overlaid, through contraception, by an objectively contradictory language, namely, that of not giving oneself totally to the other. This leads not only to a positive refusal to be open to life but also to a falsification of the inner truth of conjugal love, which is called upon to give itself in personal totality.” (Familiaris Consortio, #32)

The Holy Father has explained that when contraception is used, the marital act ceases to be an act of love:

In the conjugal act it is not licitly to separate the unitive aspect from the procreative aspect, because both the one and the other pertain to the intimate truth of the conjugal act. The one is activated together with the other and in a certain sense the one by means of the other. This is what the encyclical teaches (cf. Humanae Vitae, 12). Therefore, in such a case the conjugal act, deprived of its interior truth because it is artificially deprived of its procreative capacity, ceases also to be an act of love. (General Audience of August 22, 1984)

The constant teaching of the Church was again stated on March 1, 1997 when the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for the Family issued a Vade Mecum for Confessors Concerning Some Aspects of the Morality of Conjugal Life. Included in this document is the following statement:

The Church has always taught the intrinsic evil of contraception, that is, of every marital act intentionally rendered unfruitful. This teaching is to be held as definitive and irreformable. Contraception is gravely opposed to marital chastity; it is contrary to the good of the transmission of life (the procreative aspect of matrimony) and to the reciprocal self-giving of the spouses (the unitive aspect of matrimony); it harms true love and denies the sovereign role of God in the transmission of life (n. 24).

As Pope John Paul II has stated, “The heart has become a battlefield between love and lust. The more lust dominates the heart, the less the heart experiences the nuptial meaning of the body. It becomes less sensitive to the gift of the person, which expresses that meaning in the mutual relations of the man and woman.” (General audience of July 23, 1980)


The February 9 edition of the Daily Illini, the student newspaper at the University of Illinois, republished cartoons that made fun of Muhammad. Those responsible for doing so, the editor in chief and the opinions page editor, have now been suspended.

The response of school officials to this incident is the subject of Catholic League president Bill Donohue’s news release:

“Richard Herman, the chancellor of the University of Illinois, is critical of the decision to reprint the anti-Muhammad cartoons. He maintains that a discussion about the controversial Danish cartoons could have taken place without republishing them. He’s right, but that is not the way the university treats anti-Catholic fare on campus.

“In March 1997, the same Urbana-Champaign campus displayed drawings by Michele Blondel that showed red glass vaginas hanging inside European Roman Catholic cathedrals; two of them had red glass holy water cruets with crosses on them. I wrote a letter to the president registering my objections, and received a reply from the chancellor, Michael Aiken.

“Aiken said he regretted that the art ‘disappointed’ me (flat beers disappoint me, not lousy art). He instructed, ‘Most viewers find Blondel’s art to be quite subtle as it invites the viewer to contemplate and reflect on topics as diverse as the body, the church, and architectural and religious symbolism.’ Stupid me—I thought it was Catholic-bashing porn. His closer was precious: ‘The University believes that true intellectual discourse extends not only to written communication but also to the visual.’ Except when Muslims get angry.

“So what’s changed? Do Catholics have to call for beheadings to get respect? How else to explain the condescending response I got, and the sympathetic response afforded Muslims? Similarly, nobody was disciplined for offending Catholics, but two kids have been suspended for offending Muslims!”

Ex-Official: Russia Moved Saddam's WMD

A top Pentagon official who was responsible for tracking Saddam Hussein's weapons programs before and after the 2003 liberation of Iraq, has provided the first-ever account of how Saddam Hussein "cleaned up" his weapons of mass destruction stockpiles to prevent the United States from discovering them.

"The short answer to the question of where the WMD Saddam bought from the Russians went was that they went to Syria and Lebanon," former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense John A. Shaw told an audience Saturday at a privately sponsored "Intelligence Summit" in Alexandria, Va. (

"They were moved by Russian Spetsnaz (special forces) units out of uniform, that were specifically sent to Iraq to move the weaponry and eradicate any evidence of its existence," he said.

Media Ignore Saddam's Uranium Bombshell

Tape recordings released over the weekend show that Saddam Hussein had an active nuclear weapons program at least as recently as 2000 - but the press has decided the bombshell development isn't newsworthy.

Speaking at the Intelligence Group Summit in Arlington, Va., Saddam tapes translator Bill Tierney revealed that in one recorded conversation, the Iraqi dictator can be heard discussing a plan to enrich uranium using a technique known as plasma separation.

Though U.S. weapons inspectors found that 1.8 tons of Saddam's 500 ton uranium stockpile had been partially enriched, they failed to turn up any evidence of an ongoing enrichment program.

Interview with a Terrorist

A 16-minute interview with three former terrorists, including one from Dearborn, Michigan, MUST be seen by anyone who doubts that Muslims inside the U.S. are training for "jihad" against the U.S. and other Western countries.

All three former Islamic terrorists will tell you in first-person accounts about :

1. The Islamic terrorist plans, goals and recruitments of rank and file Muslims here in America, as well as around the world to engage in a continuing jihad against our way of life and the imposition of Islamic rule upon us all.

2. How we need to wage war on Islamic terrorism in the same manner as we did Nazi Germany; how our current level of retaliation is insufficient; their view that President George Bush is "not aggressive enough" in pursuing the current global War on Terror.

3. How all Islamic infrastructure including Islamic centers and mosques in America are actively involved in the cultivation of American-born Muslims to become jihadists of the Fallujah variety; how the majority of Muslim's -- "60 to 75%" of the Muslim population support the terrorist agenda and are responsible for collecting and sending miliions upon millions of dollars to support the terrorist war effort against us.

4. How there is "no question about it" that Islam is engaged in a war against us, that this is an integral part of the Islamic culture both here in America and the Muslim world as a whole.

All Three men will tell you that the vast majorty of American's are oblivious to these facts and we all need to wake up to the reality of the war being waged against us in our own backyards.


Swann asserts pride in voting record

Despite having missed 20 of his last 36 chances to vote in an election, Lynn Swann said yesterday he was "very proud" of his voting record - and would take no more questions about it.

"I'm not worried about my voting record; I think the issues that face the state of Pennsylvania go well beyond anyone's voting record," the Republican candidate for governor said after an appearance at Montgomery County Community College in Blue Bell.

Philadelphia Inquirer

Cartoon Jihad

The editor-in-chief and opinions page editor of the University of Illinois’ student newspaper, the Daily Illini, have been suspended by the paper’s publisher for printing six of the 12 infamous cartoons of the prophet Muhammad that sparked Muslim outrage around the world.

Acton Gorton, the suspended editor-in-chief, approved the publication on February 9. Muslim students and sympathizers held an on-campus protest Tuesday, and on Wednesday, the publisher announced the suspensions.

"We did this to raise a healthy dialogue about an important issue that is in the news and so that people would learn more about Islam,” he said. "Now, I’m basically fired.”

The vast majority of mainstream media outlets refused to republish the cartoons – one of which depicted Muhammad with a bomb on his head. But other student newspapers have published the cartoons without harsh consequences, including the University of Wisconsin, Harvard University, University of Northern Illinois, and Illinois State University.

Sheehan Heckled at Chicago School

Cindy "Peace Mom" Sheehan, known for protesting the Iraq war, was greeted at St. Xavier University on the Southwest Side of Chicago with protests.

Sheehan was hired by the Catholic university's student activities board to give a speech titled "One person can make a difference, not one more," aimed at getting people involved in the peace movement.

Before her talk, dozens of bikers and blue collar workers gathered outside the field house, in the freezing rain, carrying signs that read: "Support Our Troops."

Sheehan suggested she was going to stay away from politics on this night, telling an audience of more than 300 -- including protesters who stood on the bleachers with their backs to her -- the story of why she became involved in the anti-war effort and how one person can make a difference.

She talked about how her son shared a birthday with John F. Kennedy and died in Iraq on April 4, 2004, the same date Martin Luther King was killed. That's when the protesters in the crowd started heckling her.

When she started reading her daughter's anti-war poem, something that spurred her to the peace movement, about 20 protesters inside the gym walked out, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and screaming at her.

As they left, Sheehan gave them the peace sign. Only a few of the protesters remained in the university gymnasium as she continued.

The speech became an anti-war rally, with members of the crowd cheering as she ticked off reasons why troops should come home and the war should end.

She went on to say: "If you care about the troops, do more than carry a sign or put up a bumper sticker . . . if you support this war and President Bush, march to your recruiter's office and sign up."

Chicago Sun Times

Printing Cartoons Like Shouting 'Fire'

( - Cartoons depicting the Muslim prophet Mohammed in a negative light were potentially so offensive to Muslims around the world that their publication was tantamount to yelling "fire" in a crowded theater, according to a participant at a panel discussion sponsored by the Council for American Islamic Relations. Full Story

Gumbel Grumbels and Sounds Racist

There were some eye-opening remarks from Bryant Gumbel on the most recent episode of HBO's Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel. According to a transcript posted by a television columnist named Seth Frelich, Gumbel said the following in his closing monologue last week:

"Finally, tonight, the Winter Games. Count me among those who don’t like them and won’t watch them ... Because they’re so trying, maybe over the next three weeks we should all try too. Like, try not to be incredulous when someone attempts to link these games to those of the ancient Greeks who never heard of skating or skiing. So try not to laugh when someone says these are the world’s greatest athletes, despite a paucity of blacks that makes the Winter Games look like a GOP convention. Try not to point out that something’s not really a sport if a pseudo-athlete waits in what’s called a kiss-and-cry area, while some panel of subjective judges decides who won ... So if only to hasten the arrival of the day they’re done, when we can move on to March Madness — for God’s sake, let the games begin."

Video clip (31 secs), from the Real Sports originally aired February 7, as provided by the MRC's Brent Baker: Real (665 KB), Windows Media (1 MB) or MP3 audio (185 KB).

Swann Missed Votes

Republican gubernatorial hopeful Lynn Swann didn't vote in 20 of the state's 36 elections in the past 18 years, a newspaper reported today, citing voting records from his home county.

The elections Mr. Swann missed included votes for governor, U.S. senator and president, and 13 of his own party's primaries, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

In an October 2004 interview with the Sun-Sentinel newspaper in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Mr. Swann had said, "I have always been someone to believe that when you have certain freedoms, you should exercise them and not take it for granted. If you don't take part in the process and you don't vote, then I am not willing to listen to your complaints."

The Inquirer said Allegheny County voting records showed Mr. Swann voted by absentee ballot in the general election a month later, but missed the GOP primary earlier that year when U.S. Sen. Arlen narrowly turned back a challenge by U.S. Rep. Pat Toomey.

Mr. Swann didn't vote at all in 2003, the newspaper said.


Don't Offend Islam Anyone

I've about had it with the "anything for a good riot" thugs of Islam who are offended because their beloved false prophet was drawn in an unfavorable light. Instead of proving the depiction wrong by having a peaceful discussion, they take to the world wide stage and burn down a Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Even more troubling is the sudden efforts by people who should know better to bow down to the pressure of these terrorists. Yes, you threaten to kill and burn stuff in front of the camera you are a terrorist in my book.

Islam is not and should not be protected from being offend. Muslims have no claim to decide what does or does not get published. Not any more then any other person or group. Yet, I see all the stories about the "shocking cartoon" and very few actually show it. That tells me that a publisher is more concerned about Islam then the reader.

I can't make this any clearer, just because your offended does not give you editorial rights in the western media. Shame on all those who have just handed it over.

A call by a member of the European Parliament has been made for the creation of a special committee to examine religious education and textbooks in schools to insure that the content does not offend Islam.

Hans-Gert Pttering from Germany, who heads the largest group of MEPs, said that textbooks should be reviewed for intolerant depictions of Islam and other faiths by experts overseen by the European Union and Islamic leaders.

He added that the work of building bridges between Islam and the West had to "begin with young people," and said that “textbooks should be checked to ensure they promoted European values without propagating religious stereotypes or prejudice.”

Pttering suggested that the EU could co-operate with the 56-nation Organization of the Islamic Conference, which has its headquarters in Saudi Arabia, to create a textbook review committee.

This is just the begining of a long drawn out temper tantrum. Get over it.

Abortions at home

Women who are less than nine weeks pregnant can safely have medical abortions at home, according to the head of a government-backed pilot project.

Abortion services for the 20,000 women who seek a chemically induced abortion every year could be transformed should the Department of Health's official evaluation of the pilot confirm initial findings. But it is also likely to provoke controversy from anti-abortion campaigners who will claim that home abortions would make the procedure easier and therefore lead to more women having terminations.

Guardian UK

XM Satellite's Loss in Space

XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. (Nasdaq:XMSR - news) on Thursday posted a wider fourth-quarter loss, hurt by higher programing and marketing costs even as revenue more than doubled.

In addition, XM said that a company director, Pierce Roberts, has resigned from the board because he saw "a significant chance of a crisis on the horizon" and was "troubled" about XM's direction.


Piccola laments lack of focus on Commandments

Thou shalt not make any graven image, the Ten Commandments say. Now, a state lawmaker wants to avoid any blurred images, too.

A tourist booklet of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court shows a picture of the jurists in front of a painting depicting the Ten Commandments, but the painting was blurred in the photo.

State Sen. Jeffrey Piccola, R-Dauphin County, complained about the blurring yesterday during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nomination of Allegheny County Court Judge Cynthia Baldwin to the state Supreme Court.

Piccola asked Baldwin for help in ensuring that the next edition of the booklet does not "blur out the words of the Ten Commandments."


Bill DeWeese fumbles during Super Bowl

A Detroit businessman who entertained a Pennsylvania legislator at last week's Super Bowl is one of three parties competing for a slots license in Pittsburgh. (Are you shocked?)

Don Barden hosted Pennsylvania Legislator H. William DeWeese of Green County in his luxury box at Ford Field. DeWeese says Barden is a "close confidant." (I'm sure he is)

DeWeese's involvement with Barden is attracting attention in Pittsburgh because of the legislator's role in determining the future of gambling in Pennsylvania.

DeWeese, the House Democratic leader from Greene County, appointed one member of the state's gambling regulatory board. He said he bought a game ticket at face value through the Pittsburgh Steelers.

He also said he paid for his own travel arrangements to Detroit, hotel room and food and drinks during the game.

"Since I paid for every nickel of hospitality, I am not in any way shy about saying I was a happy and jubilant fan along with Don Barden," he said.

DeWeese said concerns about his actions are "not substantive" because a licensing approval requires a qualified majority among the board's seven members.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board is charged with awarding 14 licenses to operate up to 61,000 slot machines in the state.

Barden's companies own casinos in Las Vegas, Mississippi, Colorado, and a riverboat casino in Indiana.

"It's a football game," Barden said. "I'm going to leave it at that."

Well, I'm not.......

Hon. H. William DeWeese
222 Elm Drive Suite 101
P.O. Box 832
Waynesburg, PA 15370
(724) 627-8683
Fax: (724) 627-6043

Hon. H. William DeWeese
Room 423 Main Capitol Bldg.
Harrisburg, PA 17120-2020
(717) 783-3797
Fax: (717) 772-3605

Polls Distort U.S. Views on Abortion

As two vacancies on the Supreme Court opened up last year, a series of polls found that people in the U.S. approve of the Roe v. Wade decision by a significant margin – but these polls distort Americans’ real feelings regarding abortion.

That’s the view of Mark Stricherz, a contributing editor to Crisis magazine, who takes an in-depth look behind the polls in an article titled "A Terrible Misunderstanding.”

The 1973 Roe v. Wade decision declared that no restrictions can be placed on abortion in the first trimester; in the second trimester, the state can regulate abortion "in ways that are reasonably related to maternal health,” but not ban it; and in the third trimester the state can ban abortion except when there is a threat to the mother’s life or health.

But the 1973 companion case to Roe, Doe v. Bolton, decreed that "maternal health” must take into account "all factors – physical, emotional, psychological, familial, and the woman’s age – relevant to the well-being of the patient.”

The ruling allowed a pregnant woman to have an abortion "for practically any reason remotely tied to health,” Stricherz observes.

Then a 2000 Court decision struck down laws banning partial-birth abortion.
"Thus, the Court now permits abortion at nearly any time for virtually any reason,” writes Stricherz. But that’s often not how pollsters frame the question when asking about Roe v. Wade, according to the writer.

A June 2005 Gallup Poll, for instance, describing Roe as "the decision that legalized abortion” found strong support for the decision – 65 percent.

But the Los Angeles Times framed its poll question more in line with what the Court’s rulings really mean: "Generally speaking, are you in favor of the Supreme Court decision which permits a woman to get an abortion from a doctor at any time, or are you opposed to that?”

The result: Only 43 percent of respondents were in favor. "It was the lowest level of support recorded because the rest of the polls misinterpret Roe and Doe. They view Roe v. Wade as a decision that legalized abortion but restricted the procedure, not one that made virtually all abortions legal,” writes Stricherz.

In fact, the overwhelming majority of respondents in Gallup polls disapprove of abortion when a woman and her partner simply do not want another child or when a pregnancy would interfere with a woman’s career.

Also, polls have routinely found that about two-thirds of respondents oppose legal abortion after the first trimester – and a 2003 CNN/USA Today poll found that 84 percent oppose it in the last three months of pregnancy.

Pilots Report Seeing Laser Lights

Police and federal authorities are investigating reports that as many as 19 passenger planes arriving at the Detroit Metro Airport last evening were hit by commercial type lasers during their final approach. Pilots of the aircraft reported that lasers were being aimed at the cockpits of the aircraft from the ground. Initial investigation determined that the lasers apparently originated from the west end of the city along the Telegraph Road corridor, according to Dearborn Police Chief Michael Celeski. Most of the affected aircraft were reportedly approaching the airport from the north. Police searched the general area near Telegraph Road but failed to find the origin of the lasers or those responsible.

Last week, the crew aboard a Delta jetliner reported that someone pointed a laser at the aircraft as it was approaching Seattle-Tacoma International Airport On Tuesday, 7 February 2006. Crew members said they observed intermittent red laser bursts as the plane approached the airport for a landing at about 9:30 p.m.

Wal-Mart Must Stock 'Morning-After' Pill - A pro-abortion group is praising the Massachusetts Board of Pharmacy for its unanimous decision requiring all Wal-Mart stores in the state to stock the "morning-after" pill.

NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts said it is "delighted" over the state board's decision in favor of three women who challenged the store for refusing to carry the emergency contraception in its pharmacies."This decision reflects the values of fairness and privacy that a vast majority of Massachusetts residents support," said NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts Executive Director Melissa Kogut in a statement.

She said the pharmacy board did "the right thing."Kogut called on all Wal-Mart stores throughout the nation to dispense the Plan B emergency contraception "and replace its current policy of discrimination with one that puts women's health first."

Saddam's WMD Tapes

( - The organizers of an upcoming "Intelligence Summit" reportedly have 12 hours of Saddam Hussein's audio recordings, which they describe as the "smoking gun evidence" that the Iraqi dictator possessed weapons of mass destruction in the period leading up to the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. Full Story

Death sentence for Zarqawi

A military court in Jordan has condemned nine men, including al-Qaida in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, to death for a plot to carry out a chemical attack on the kingdom.


Bob Casey Jr.: Another Disturbing Partnership

Just a few weeks ago, we reported how Hillary Clinton had goven the maximum amount of money allowed to Bob Casey Jr.

Now PowerBlog! has learned that U.S. Senatorial candidate Bob Casey Jr. will be the keynote speaker for the 10th Annual Philadelphia Black tie Gala Dinner for the Human Rights Campaign (the nation's largest gay activist organization) on February 18th this year.

Many have had an open mind on "conservative Democrat" Bob Casey, despite the leftist support he has been getting. As we continue to discover who Bob Casey Jr. really is, it becomes clear that we should not support him in this election.

Jim Panyard: Another One Down

Jim Panyard, Lynn Swann's last remaining opponent for the Republican nomination for governor, exited the race Tuesday, saying he was unable to raise enough money or attract enough news coverage.

Panyard, the retired president and chief executive officer of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers' Association, said the Republican State Committee's endorsement of the former Pittsburgh Steelers star on Saturday — more than three months before the May 16 primary — "sadly, proves the state Republican Party is not interested in principle, but in power and celebrity."


Lynn Swann Opposes Abortion

Harrisburg, PA ( -- Likely Republican gubernatorial nominee Lynn Swann, a former Hall of Fame football player for the Pittsburgh Steelers, said in an interview on Sunday that he opposes abortion. He was unsure of his position on stem cell research and said he wanted more input before making a final decision on it.

During an interview on ABC News' ''This Week with George Stephanopoulos," Swann indicated he would sign legislation banning abortions once the Supreme Court overturns the Roe v. Wade decision.

''I would sign — if the legislation came to me, I would sign it,'' Swann said, after initially thinking that abortions would be prohibited if Roe is overturned.

''Well if they send it to the states to decide … as opposed to making a decision that abortions are illegal, then I would sign [legislation] making abortions illegal," he said.

''You describe yourself as 'pro-life.' What does that mean to you exactly?'' Stephanopoulos asked Swann.

''That you're in favor of life,'' Swann replied. ''That you do not believe in abortion. That you look for alternative measures and means other than having an abortion.''

Swann appeared to have no clear position on the issue of stem cell research and indicated he was ''not an expert when it comes to that kind of research at this particular time,'' and would ''rely on the science and the medical community to give me some input in terms of where we should go.''

Though Swann faces a primary challenge in May, he already has the backing of the Republican Party in the state and observers are looking ahead to his matchup with pro-abortion Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell.

In 2004, Rendell lent his support to leading pro-abortion group NARAL to raise $25 million for its election efforts.

Bob Casey knows Nothing about Economics: UPDATE

Now you can hear the interview that proves Bob Casey needs some economic classes. Listen and judge for yourself.

Click here to listen

Original Post:

We had PA state treasurer and Senate candidate Bob Casey on the show. One of the main issues he choose to address was the federal tax cuts and interest rates.

It was obvious that Mr. Casey has no idea what he is talking about. His argument was now that we have a federal deficit and cut taxes we are losing jobs, interest rates are up and it has a negative effect across the board.

Mr. Casey apparently has not noticed the low unemployment rates, the housing boom, low interest rates and the lack of any real negative impact from tax cuts or deficits. I hope to be able to post audio of the interview soon.

Santorum Kicks-Off Online Petition

"With the campaign season officially upon us, I am excited to kick-off our Nominating Petitions Online Campaign! Nominating petitions are just the first of many activities that will lead us to victory. Your help is essential," Santorum wrote in an e-mail to supporters.

By visiting, volunteers can learn about the petitions and access everything they need to participate. Senator Santorum is encouraging a spirited competition among circulators, and the campaign will announce the top petition circulator in each county on in March.

McClellan questioned on chaplain prayers

Presidential press secretary Scott McClellan skirted a question about the newly revised Air Force guidelines on chaplain prayer – guidelines that both proponents and opponents agree preclude military clergy from praying "in Jesus' name" at official events.

As WorldNetDaily reported, while the revised rules, released Thursday, assure chaplains they "will not be required to participate in religious activities, including public prayer, inconsistent with their faiths," they still are urged to use "non-denominational, inclusive prayer or a moment of silence" at non-religious military events.

Referencing the WorldNetDaily story, WND asked McClellan: "Why is a devout Christian like the commander in chief continuing to allow this censorship of Jesus?"

"I don't know about that specific report that you reference," McClellan responded. "We believe it's important to value the contributions of our military chaplains that they provide to our men and women in uniform. Our men and women in uniform ought to be able to express their religion freely. And that's what our view is."

Lawmakers bent own rules to pass bill benefiting bank

To quickly pass a law that effectively shields executives and directors of Sovereign Bank from a shareholder challenge, the state House and Senate apparently bent their internal rules.

Read More

Episcopal Bishop Gets Treatment for Alcoholism

The Episcopal Church's first openly gay bishop, V. Gene Robinson, has started treatment for alcoholism, a spokesman said Tuesday.

Diocese of New Hampshire spokesman Mike Barwell said Robinson told clergy the news in an e-mail Monday. Barwell referred further questions Tuesday to other officials who were not immediately available to comment.

Robinson was elected bishop of New Hampshire in 2003 and confirmed by the national church, causing an upheaval not only in the Episcopal Church, but the worldwide Anglican Communion of which it is part.


Activists Protest Union 'Fossils'

( - A handful of union critics on Monday picketed outside the Washington headquarters of the AFL-CIO with a 15-foot dinosaur balloon to protest what they described as the "criminal practices of the labor movement." Full Story

Wisconsin Lawmakers Hold Hearing on Birth Control for Minors - On this Valentine's Day, a group of Wisconsin parents is telling the state not to fund birth control for their children.Parents from across Wisconsin are gathering in the State Capitol Tuesday to voice their support for legislation that would make 15-, 16- and 17-year-old girls ineligible to receive free, taxpayer-funded birth control, Pro-Life Wisconsin said.A joint Senate-Assembly committee is holding a public hearing Tuesday afternoon on legislation that would block minor children's access to the Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project, a state/federal family planning program.The Project currently allows minor girls to receive birth control and other family planning and health services without charge -- and without the knowledge or consent of a parent.

Mike Turzai: Another One Bites the Dust

State Representative Mike Turzai today announced that he was withdrawing as a candidate for lieutenant governor and endorsed the campaign of Lynn Swann and Jim Matthews for governor and lieutenant governor.

Press release at

Dear Powerball

Dear Powerball:

It would seem that the Blessed Virgin Mary was not always a Virgin, for Matthew 12:46-47, Luke 3:31-32, and Luke 8:19-21 speak of Jesus having brethren. How would you respond?

In the Hebrew and Aramaic the word for brother and kinman is the same, so James, Joseph, and Jude were kinsmen, relatives. This is a common attitude in Mediterranean and Semitic cultures. For instance, the Apostle James is the Son of Alpheus (Matthew 10:3, Mark 3:18, Luke 6:15) and brother of the Apostle Matthew Levi (Mark 2:14) and the Apostle Jude (Luke 6:16, Acts 1:13), yet this Apostle is specifically referred to by Paul as the brother of Jesus (Galations 1:19). Surely the Virgin Mary did not have more than one husband.
Jude Thaddeus is also called the brother of Jesus, but he is also the brother of the previously mentioned James (Luke 6:18, Acts 1:13)

Terri's Watch: Haleigh Poutre -A Letter Worth Reading

Response to Cathy Young of the Boston Globe

Dear Ms. Young,
I writing in response to your column, “Haleigh Poutre is no Terri Schiavo”.

After reading all of the dishonesty that you purport as truths in regard to my sister Terri, I have to say that this is not only the most irresponsible article that I have yet to read from the media regarding Terri’s situation, but possibly the most egregious.

You wrote that, “Schiavo had been in a persistent vegetative state for 15 years, and had undergone a barrage of tests showing that she had no higher brain functioning and no consciousness – a fact on which all unbiased medical experts agreed.”

I want to know how you’ve researched Terri’s case, and how you’ve obtained this information. Could it be that you’ve gathered your ‘facts’ from the other opinion pieces similar to the one you’ve written about Terri?
If you are referring to autopsy that ostensibly proved that Terri was PVS, then you are entirely wrong. The Independent Medical Examiner who performed the autopsy, Dr. Jon Thogmartin, went to great lengths to caution those reviewing Terri’s autopsy that a post-mortem, forensic examination could neither confirm nor refute a diagnosis of persistent vegetative state. This is because PVS is a clinical diagnosis based on the behaviors of a living patient and not forensic pathology.

Moreover, Dr. Stephen Nelson – a consulting pathologist who assisted Dr. Thogmartin with the autopsy report – admitted that, while Terri’s symptoms were consistent with PVS, he could not rule out the possibility that Terri was in a minimally conscious state.

And there are numerous pathologists and physicians that have responded to the autopsy finding as being misleading and ambiguous. This information could have been and still can be easily provided to you.
I wonder if you were you aware that – as indicated in Terri’s medical records – she was talking when given rehabilitation in the months following her injury? This completely refutes the PVS diagnosis.

Additionally, did you know that there were more doctors on record with the court (from some of the most distinguished institutions from across the country) stating that Terri was not in PVS than there were doctors that said she was? Furthermore, most of these affidavits (there are more than 42 in total) submitted by these doctors said that if Terri was given proper therapy, her functioning capacity could have improved. Why was this never reported by the media?

Did you know that a recent British Medical Journal has reported that nearly 43% of all PVS diagnoses are, in fact, misdiagnoses? Based on this report, the Independent Medical Examiner findings, the sworn testimony and affidavits of over 42 physicians, neurologists and other healthcare professionals contradicting that Terri was in PVS, I believe it is incredibly reckless for you to make the sweeping statement that Terri was PVS.
The fact that my sister received no therapy for more than thirteen years, which also was rarely if ever reported by the media, only added to the deterioration of her condition. No autopsy report could have ever determined how much Terri would have improved if she was receiving proper rehabilitation and therapy during the past thirteen years.

To make the statement that, “. . . all unbiased medical experts agreed” as to the condition of my sister is so completely disingenuous that the only conclusion I can draw is that you did absolutely no research into the doctors that evaluated Terri.

Dr. Ronald Cranford, hired by Michael Schiavo, has testified in almost every major case that the removal of the feeding tube should be permitted. He even takes pleasure in the moniker, Dr. Humane Death. To call him ‘unbiased’ is like calling Rush Limbaugh a liberal democrat. And one of the other doctors that testified in my sister trial, Dr. Peter Bambakidis, was later discovered as having ties to same organization as Michael Schiavo’s attorney George Felos.

But aside from all this, what is really sad is that your article and so many others like yours does nothing but discriminate against the disabled by labeling them with this dangerous and subjective PVS diagnosis. The PVS diagnosis was created for one reason and to serve only one purpose – to kill those that are the weakest and most vulnerable among us.

No amount of damage to the brain or level of disability should give anyone the authority to kill. But this is exactly what you are saying - and is now happening all the time - that we can justify the killing of human beings because they have reached a level of profound brain damage that is unacceptable for us to care for them anymore. So, tell me, how long do you give Haliegh to improve before you give up on her and decide that she must die?

What is really shameful though is that I have to respond to articles like yours and defend my sister’s life and explain why her family should have been permitted to love her.

Columnist Nat Hentoff commented on the media and how they have handled my sister’s case. He said that it was so shoddy and inaccurate that it was the worst case of ‘journalistic malpractice’ that he’s seen in 25 years.

It continues.

Bobby Schindler

Source: Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation

North America Parishes Affiliate with the Anglican Communion Network

Forward in Faith North America (FiFNA), the largest organization of Anglo-catholic parishes in the Episcopal Church, recently voted to affiliate its parishes with the Anglican Communion Network (ACN) en masse. The move, which makes all parishes that are members of FiFNA automatically ACN-affiliated parishes unless they choose otherwise, dramatically increases the size of the Network’s Forward in Faith Convocation of parishes outside of Network-affiliated dioceses.

Parishes and dioceses in the Anglo-catholic tradition have a significant and welcome presence in the Network, said Bishop Robert Duncan, ACN moderator. He noted that the Network-affiliated dioceses of Fort Worth, Quincy and San Joaquin are all FiFNA members.

Following the example of Anglican Communion Archbishops who spoke at the Hope and A Future Conference in November about maintaining communion with each other even though they have different views on the ordination of women to the priesthood and episcopacy, the ACN works to welcome and respect orthodox Anglicans on both sides of this theological question. “What the primates told us is that they have learned to disagree on this issue while continuing in ministry together. We in the Network are committed to the same goal,” said Bishop Duncan.

Commenting on the move, Bishop Keith Ackerman, Quincy, who also serves as president of FiFNA said, “"We’ve tried it going separately, and it didn’t work. We’ve come to the table together. We can not go back to our divisions. We stand as Anglicans united, and we will stand!"

The ACN, which was formed just two years ago to stand for orthodox Anglicanism in North America and maintain connections to Anglicans around the world, continues to grow. Presently, affiliates include over 1000 parishes and 2500 clergy, 10 dioceses and 6 convocations, and an estimated 250,000 communicants. A seventh convocation is presently organizing.