Thursday, May 28, 2009

No Other Religion

Recently, I have been following the story of how the Christian Children's Fund is changing its name to ChildFund International--announced by their board as "a new strategy and globally unified name and brand to help us reach more children, more effectively."

Now never mind the jargon in that quotation (what the heck does "globally unified name and brand" actually mean?), or the new name which consists of two words--both capitalized--jammed together without a space (a currently popular branding technique that will look as dated as a Formica dinette 30 years from now). For that matter never mind the fact that this organization is dropping the word "Christian" from its name, as though it were some last vestige of 19th century colonialism (which is precisely what the politically correct crowd would have us believe). The point I want to make has to do with the mere fact that organizations such as the Christian Children's Fund even exist in our world.

A few days later, I happened to read about another organization, known as Children International, which has been in existence for about as long as the newly-branded ChildFund International (about 70 years). (Does anyone besides me see a lot of confusion down the road for these two, similarly-named organizations?) Regardless of the naming disaster, both these organizations apparently do a lot of good.

Then there are two organizations I personally support, Compassion International and World Vision. Then there is a whole host of organizations I have only heard of and cannot recommend: Just try Googling the words, "child" or "children" and "support," and you'll see what I mean. The list is almost endless.

But notice one thing: All of these organizations can date their founding to the work of Christians in generations gone by. Can anyone point to a Buddhist, Muslim, or Hindu organization that does this kind of work?

NO OTHER RELIGION--not Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Shinto, etc. (nor any secular organization)--is as responsible for founding ministries to children, orphanages, hospitals, or schools--or contemporary efforts to rehabilitate drug addicts, liberate women and children from the sex trade, or guarantee basic human rights as are Christian churches.

Perhaps there is something different in the religion whose Founder taught us to "love one another" and who gave His own life out of love to free everyone who calls on His name from sin and darkness.

Think about that the next time someone tells you there is no difference between Christianity and other religions, or a secularist acts as if there is no value in Christianity.

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." John 13:34


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Nashotah House confers three honorary degrees; J.I. Packer addresses graduates

Good and accurate reporting from Episcopal Life Online regarding the Nashotah House Commencement:

Nashotah House confers three honorary degrees
May 21, 2009
[Nashotah House] Nashotah House Theological Seminary in Wisconsin awarded three Doctor of Divinity degrees, honoris causa, during its May 14 commencement ceremony.

The degree recipients were Bishop Suffragan Paul E. Lambert of the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas; the Rev. Jonathan Baker, principal of Pusey House at Oxford University; and the Rev. J. I. Packer, Anglican theologian, author and executive editor of Christianity Today.

A prolific writer and lecturer, Packer is perhaps best known for his 1973 book Knowing God, now considered a modern classic. He has also served as general editor for the English Standard Version of the Bible and was a contributor to the watershed Evangelicals and Catholics Together: Toward a Common Mission, the ecumenical project launched by Charles Colson and the late Fr. Richard John Neuhaus. Packer has also collaborated on books with Thomas Howard and Thomas Oden, and remains a seminal thinker in contemporary Anglicanism.

Read it all.

Monday, May 18, 2009

A Deposit of Hope

We have just had an extraordinary Commencement at Nashotah House--actually an entire week filled with a golf tournament on the world-renowned championship courses at Kohler, Wisconsin, our annual Alumni Mass and Reunion, an Alumni/student football game, our Commencement and Trustees meeting, followed by the Ordination of five of our graduates to the priesthood on Saturday, and the Baptism of one the daughter of one of our graduates on Sunday morning--not to mention dinners, receptions, and a lot of fun and fellowship in between.

Highlights of the week: Conferring honorary doctoral degrees on Dr. J.I. Packer, who served as our Commencement speaker, Bp. Paul Lambert, an alumnus and Suffragan Bishop of Dallas, and Fr. Jonathan Baker, the Principal of Pusey House, Oxford. Now think about that for a minute--simultaneously conferring degrees on one of the Anglican Communion's most noted Evangelicals and the Principal of one of the Communion's leading Anglo-Catholic institutions--yet both these men can find their essential unity in the Gospel. If there is a hopeful model for an Anglican future, this is it!

I have been too busy to blog--and will be for the next few days, as we have our year-end faculty conference. But Father Dan Martins has recounted his impressions of his return to his seminary alma mater over at his blog in a post entitled: A Deposit of Hope. Fr. Martins has captured exactly what we hope Nashotah House is and will continue to be. Thanks be to God! And keep us in your prayers.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


A letter to the The Most Rev. and Rt. Hon. Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury:

Your Grace,

A statement released today by Professors Christopher Seitz, Philip Turner, and Ephraim Radner, and Attorney Mark McCall states: "Friday’s session of the Anglican Consultative Council is an embarrassment to Anglicans everywhere, and a sad display of procedural confusion."

I would go further than saying "procedural confusion." It is, as reports from Professor Stephen Noll and others are calling it: PERFIDY. It is a betrayal of every Anglican who has looked to the Covenant process to bring desperately needed order to our life as a Communion.

I urge you to take note of the two recommendations made by Prof. Seitz, et al in their statement:

(1) This issue must be re-visited immediately by the ACC and voted upon in a lawful and proper manner during this meeting. The alternative is moving forward with lasting questions as to the legitimacy of the entire process.

(2)An explanation must be offered by those in charge of these proceedings, including the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Chairman of the ACC, as to how such manifestly improper procedures were permitted to unfold from the outset of Friday’s session and, indeed, of ACC-14 itself.

If lawful and proper action on the Covenant is not forthcoming from this meeting of the Council, the only appropriate response is for the Churches of the Communion to begin themselves the process of adopting the Ridley Cambridge Text."

It is painfully obvious to observers in many quarters that the continuation of the Communion depends on your actions in this matter.

Respectfully yours in Christ,

The Very Rev. Robert S. Munday, Ph.D.
Dean and President
Professor of Systematic Theology
Nashotah House Theological Seminary

NOTE: Let the Archbishop of Canterbury know your opinion! You can do it here: