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Sarah Palin is the other whom Yoda spoke about.

calendar   Friday - March 16, 2012

If You Lead, They Will Follow. Or Not.

With Peiper still away from the keyboard, taking care of the important things in life, Drew steps in to see what’s what over in England. And probably gets it all wrong, as we Yanks so often do.

UK: Archbishop of Canterbury to Step Down

Discord in the pews over gay priests, women bishops, and reunification with the Roman Catholic Church??

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, has announced he is to step down after ten years as he admitted that the row over homosexuality in the Church has been a “major nuisance”.

Dr Williams, 61, will leave at the end of December to take up a new role as Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge next January. The Queen, Supreme Governor of the Church of England, has been informed.

His reign has been plagued by bitter rows over gay clergy and women bishops that have left him struggling to prevent the Church from unravelling.

Explaining his reasons for leaving, Dr Williams admitted that “crisis management” was not his “favourite activity” but denied the rows over homosexuality had “overshadowed everything”.

But he said: “It has certainly been a major nuisance. But in every job that you are in there are controversies and conflicts and this one isn’t going to go away in a hurry. I can’t say that it is a great sense of ‘free at last’.”

Dr Williams said his successor would need the “constitution of an ox and the skin of a rhinoceros”.

Ouch. Bitter much? Bit him too!

He described the Church of England as a “great treasure” which was still a place where many people sought inspiration and comfort in times of need.

“I would like the successor that God would like,” he said. “I think that it is a job of immense demands and I would hope that my successor has the constitution of an ox and the skin of a rhinoceros, really.

“But he will, I think, have to look with positive, hopeful eyes on a Church which, for all its problems, is still, for so many people, a place to which they resort in times of need and crisis, a place to which they look for inspiration.

“I think the Church of England is a great treasure. I wish my successor well in the stewardship of it.”

This may in fact be a battle between the Liberal and Conservative elements within the church.

Dr Williams has been long known for his socially liberal views but he frustrated the liberal wing of the Church by siding with conservatives over the issue of the appointment of homosexual priests.

He faces defeat over the Anglican Communion Covenant, a deal designed to prevent the Church splitting. It effective prevents openly gay clergy from becoming bishops by preventing branches doing anything that might cause a schism.

When Dr Williams unveiled the document in 2010, he urged the church to endorse it or risk seeing the “piece-by-piece dissolution” of the Anglican Communion.

The Bishop of Sherborne, the Rt Rev Dr Graham Kings, warned that rejection of the Covenant would cause the worldwide church to “disintegrate”, and added: “Rowan Williams has put his whole weight behind this ... For anyone in his position it would be devastating [if it failed].”

Branches of the Anglican church around the world are considering whether the deal should be adopted.

In the Church of England it requires the approval of a majority of the 44 dioceses to proceed to a final vote at the General Synod.

But so far 17 dioceses have voted against, and only ten in favour. The rebellion is being led by liberal dioceses who say they would be punished under the arrangements.

I don’t understand this next bit at all. This COE news from last week is confusing: the Archbishop wants closer ties with the Papacy, but at the same time wants COE Conservatives to stop going over to the Catholics? Umm, wasn’t the COE created in the first place to NOT be part of the Catholic Church? Yeah I know, Henry VIII and his dalliances and divorces and all that. But wasn’t there also some Martin Luther aspect to things? They were contemporaries after all. And the whole point of the Reformation was to distance themselves from the worldly corruption and regality that the Church in Rome had become.

And now the traditionalists in the Anglican faith feel that they can only find their worldview reflected in Catholicism? Horry Clap. This is a BIG DEAL. Really. It is as if the whole country got together and said, “Sod this speaking English stuff. From now on, it’s French all the way. Good enough for the Normans, good enough for us.” It’s an unbelievable break with tradition.

Archbishop of Canterbury in fresh push to stop Anglicans from converting

The Archbishop of Canterbury signalled a fresh push to dissuade traditionalist Anglicans from defecting to the Roman Catholic Church as he joined the Pope in stressing moves to bring the two churches together.

Rowan Williams used a joint prayer service in Rome to call for a renewed drive to “restore full sacramental communion” between the Anglican and Catholic churches.

Dr Williams and Pope Benedict XVI prayed and lit candles together at the Chapel of St Gregory the Great, in a service highlighting 1,400 years of links between the church in England and Rome.
...
The site’s links to England date back to the sixth century when it was the home of Pope Gregory the Great.

It was from there that he dispatched St Augustine, the first Archbishop of Canterbury, on a mission to help reconvert the Anglo-Saxons.

In his address the Pope described the site as the “birthplace of the link between Christianity in Britain and the Church of Rome”.
...
Traditionalist Anglo-Catholics have warned that the move would set back efforts to restore full communion between the Anglican and Catholic churches.

Several hundred are poised to join the Ordinariate, the branch of the Catholic Church set up for disaffected Anglicans, if a compromise agreement cannot be reached.

But in his address Dr Williams spoke pointedly of the two churches as “one holy catholic and apostolic body”.

Ok, now I am fully confused. I surrender. What on earth is going on? Was the idea that he’d make the COE so much like the Catholic church that the right wingers can be spared the bother of having to convert? How does that square with the rest of the flock, who - and it’s perhaps just my imagination and distorted sense of history - don’t want any part of being Catholic in the first place?? Plus the whole gays thing. Sounds to me like this Archbishop has mined the cricket pitch, and has bowled a googly. This can not bode well for the players in this innings.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/16/2012 at 02:09 PM   
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calendar   Thursday - February 23, 2012

Death In Languedoc

Bugger This

Peiper sent me a couple links to sites about the Cathars. Fascinating stuff. History and religion, not conspiracy theories. War and torture, but underneath it all a completely different version of Christianity. I had read a bit about them decades ago, but only lightly. The internet has tons of information on them now.

While the ancient Egyptians had more gods than you can shake a stick at, their theological world view was dualistic. As above, so below. Life on earth is a mirror of life in heaven. The gods act like people, and the people sometimes have god-like qualities. Along with this duality was a common understanding of what living a proper life was all about; this was the concept of Ma’at. Which was also a god, because the ancient Egyptians made gods out of everything. Perhaps they did so because they realized that some things were inherently holy, or at least sacrosanct. But if you lived a proper life, once you were dead you could meet the gatekeeper of the underworld and argue the defense for your soul during its weighing. “I have not murdered, I have not stolen, I have not lusted after my brother’s wife. I have honored the gods. I have not lied to the magistrates about my brother. I cared for my parents and treated them with respect.” and so forth. If that sounds like the Ten Commandments to you, it ought to because it pretty much is. Only a thousand years or so older. Every new religion that comes along borrows something from the dominant religions of its time. Sometimes lots of borrowing. The Egyptians had the ideas of the seasonally dying god, the virgin birth, the mother goddess, resurrection, heaven, hell, and the devil (the bad god or the anti-god, aka Seth) all figured out too. But Egypt didn’t immediately cease to exist once it became a satrapy of Rome. Their religions continued for some time, and their language survived until the islamic onslaught; the liturgical Coptic spoken today is a direct descendant of pharaonic Egyptian, and was a lingua franca of Egypt until about 1700. The Egyptian pantheon may have received a new coat of Roman paint, but it still existed when the early Christians showed up, and the faiths probably blended: Horus became St. George, time marched on, and a few core concepts may have carried down through the ages.

Very early Christianity flourished in post-pharaonic Egypt. There was a gnostic sect, and either alongside them or descended from them there was the Coptic sect, which still exists today and is currently being persecuted by those ever-tolerant muslims.

Enter the Cathars onto the stage of history. The Cathars were a group of people without any real national identity. They wandered around the shores of the Mediterranean, moving through Greece and the Balkan lands and eventually winding up in the area we now think of as southern France, down near the Spanish border. Except in the 900s-1200s it wasn’t France then, nor really Spain (actually Aragon) either. I have not studied their faith nor their history, so I can’t say if the Cathars were an offshoot of the Bogomils, the Paulicians, or descended from the Manichaean syncretic faith, both of which preceded it and were dualistic in nature. The point is that the Cathars felt themselves to be Christians, as did the Bogomils. These were all gnostic dualistic faiths; while the Church of Rome was just getting to it’s feet, dualism (Christian or otherwise) was a common belief system all around the Mediterranean Sea and into the lands to the East. Gnostic faiths like Pelagianism existed all over Europe, although not all were dualistic. But like the followers of Pelagius, they were all branded as heresy.

The land around that Sea was the “known world” of the west of the time. This was all during the time of the Byzantine Empire, when the focus of the western world was far more to the east than it was during earlier Roman times or later Medieval times. Not that those Medieval times were as euro-centric as we’ve lead ourselves to believe; the Byzantine Empire, centered in Constantinople (modern Istanbul) survived until 1453, and had been the center of Christianity from the fall of Rome until the later Crusades. When the muzzies sacked the city, took over, and closed the trade routes, it gave rise to old Chris Columbus in 1492 ... and that was the end of the Middle Ages. But the West has forgotten the Byzantines. 1000 years of history wiped off the slate; we think “History. Right. Fertile Crescent, ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, the Dark Ages, then the Middle Ages, lost knowledge brought back from the Crusades, the Renaissance, Reformation, Age of Enlightenment, Industrial Revolution, Modern Times” and forget entirely about the major creche of Western culture. The only Dark Ages were in the forests of western and northern Europe, and it was that corner of the world where the Roman Church made inroads. And one of the best ways of making inroads is to eliminate the competition, by propaganda, war, or both.

The Cathar civilization was one of high learning, productive work, religious tolerance, and a simple lifestyle. “Catharism held that the universe was a battleground between good, which was spirit, and evil, which was matter. Human beings were believed to be spirits [angels] trapped in physical [evil, unclean] bodies. The leaders of the religion, the perfects, lived with great austerity, remaining chaste and avoiding all foods that came from sexual union [ie vegetarians].” Like the old Egyptian concept of ma’at, they had a sophisticated, all encompassing, and nearly beyond understanding way of being called paratge, which filtered down to the rest of Europe as what we think of today as chivalry. They actually had no name for themselves, calling themselves merely “Good Christians”. The word Cathar comes from the Greek katharos and means pure.They were just people trying to live a proper life as they saw it. It was other people who called them Cathars, or Albigenseans because the city of Albi was one of their centers, along with the city of Toulouse. But their beliefs were more than just antithetical to the Catholic faith; they were heretical. And thus began the Albigensian Crusade.

The Albigensian Crusade was immensely popular in northern France because it gave pious warriors an opportunity to win a Crusade indulgence without traveling far from home or serving more than 40 days. During the first season the Crusaders captured Béziers in the heart of Cathar territory and—following the instructions of the papal legate who allegedly said, “Kill them all. God will know his own,” when asked how the Crusaders should distinguish the heretics from true Christians—massacred almost the entire population of the city. With the exception of Carcassonne, which held out for a few months, much of the territory of the Albigeois surrendered to the Crusaders.

So while the English were figuring out how to write the Magna Carta and limit the power of kings, the French went on a killing spree and had nearly a commuter war that they could wrap in shrouds of holiness. And kill they did, not just defeating the Cathars but nearly eliminating all of them in a genocidal orgy of war and torture. The very first Inquisition was formed by the Dominicans to get the Cathars, and it was very effective. People were burned at the stake left and right. Hundreds of thousands of people were put to the sword, and by 1215 or so the Cathars nearly eliminated. What was once the most fertile and productive corner of Europe was laid to waste, and centuries later is still one of its poorest corners. By 1244 the fighting was all but over, but it took another century of Inquisition and repression to completely eradicate the faith.

A few remarkable castles remain in the south of France, now popular with tourists. A few of their tenets may have made their way into Protestant philosophy; it isn’t that great a theological leap from the Cathar belief of “angels in devil’s bodies” to the “man is inherently sinful” view of John Calvin. Their scriptures only exist as fragments, but what is left is markedly different than what we call the bible today, and actually closer to ancient Greek manuscripts and certain Dead Sea scrolls. It really makes me wonder what was lost, and just how far the faith we call Christianity has been bent by politics and revisionism over the centuries.

March 16th 2012 will be the 768th anniversary of the collapse of Montségur, a defensive Cathar castle atop a steep narrow mountain. When the fortress surrendered the inhabitants were given the choice of renouncing their faith or suffering the consequences. They kept their beliefs. 200 people were burned alive in one of the largest and earliest auto de fes in European history. The heavy metal band Iron Maiden made a song out of it in 2003, but the burning, like the Cathars themselves, has largely been forgotten by history.

Fascinating stuff. You could study this for a lifetime.



Oh, and the “bugger this”? Part of the Catholic propaganda against the Cathars was that they were sodomites (rather projectionist maybe?). The Cathars were believed to have come from Bulgaria, which is Bougre in French. So calling someone a Bulgarian became a polite way of saying that they favored a sexual union historically associated with homosexuality. Now give bougre to the English, who can’t pronounce anything foreign, and you get bugger. There was also a Dominican Inquisitor known as Robert le Bougre (Buggery Bob) “the hammer of heretics” who was a renounced Cathar, and like many recent converts, was rather too enthusiastic ... and has come down through history as one of the cruelest and most sadistic torturers of all time.

See More Below The Fold

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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 02/23/2012 at 02:21 PM   
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calendar   Thursday - January 19, 2012

The Breaking Romney ‘Scandal’?

John Fricke over at the American Thinker blog has an entry on the latest religious bigotry against Mitt Romney:

The media is digging hard on, among other things, Romney’s tithing to the Mormon church.  Reports say that Romney, either by himself or as a large part of a group of LDS members from Bain Capital, gave to the Mormon church stock holdings from his/their personal Bain accounts.  Stock holdings worth millions of dollars.
The stories then, at least begin to, ask the question as to the impact the Mormon church would have on policy within the Oval Office of a Romney administration.

Excuse me? Romney GIVES his Church millions in tithing and the Church is going to influence him? It’s not like the Church is giving Romney millions to influence him.

Here’s the deal: the LDS Church encourages tithing 10% of your income. Romney’s made millions, so of course he’s tithed millions. I daresay he’s also contributed to other Church programs: missionary fund, welfare fund, building fund, special funds set up when disasters like Katrina or tsunamis in Indonesia and Japan occur.

Anyway, I agree with John Fricke:

This is a problem, a very big problem.  For Barack Obama…

Romney should tell the media they need to dig through the President’s records to see what he has given to his church.  When and how much and what for.  Romney should further state that he is a proud member in solid standing within his church and he has no intentions of fleeing that church for political reasons.

Exactly. Who abandoned his church for political reasons? Why? Let’s compare Thomas S. Monson (current President of the LDS Church) to the racist Rev. Jeremiah Wright. And just what church does Obama attend these days? The Church of the 19th Hole?

BTW, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is also Mormon. Where’s the scrutiny of his tithing?


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 01/19/2012 at 12:23 AM   
Filed Under: • PoliticsReligion •  
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calendar   Saturday - December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas to all the BMEWSd!

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Let me also leave you with this: The Prayer of St. Francis. I memorized it years ago and still use it for meditation.

Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love,
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy!

Oh Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled, as to console;
To be understood, as to understand;
To be loved, as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.

I think we will need such sentiments in the coming election year.


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 12/24/2011 at 02:04 PM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysReligion •  
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calendar   Saturday - December 03, 2011

HIS NAME IS BONE, YEAH REALLY, AND RELIGION “BREACHES HIS RIGHTS”

It’s disingenuous jerks like this that give a bad name to all non believers.
It’s as true in the USA as it is here, where this story takes place.

Why oh why should anyone like this be pandered to?
City councils meetings begin with a prayer.  I’d be willing to bet that many of them who bow their heads may not believe any more then this one blowhard.  But it’s convention. It’s tradition. And it still is a Christian country.  Well, until the muzzies outbirth the unbelievers in islam. And that won’t be long at the rate they breed.
But forget that for the moment please. Hard as it is.

This guy figures his rights are being violated and he’s made to feel an outsider because of a starting prayer at the council meetings.  I think he has lost the plot.
Of course we’re outsiders.  By our own choice. So what makes him think he has a right to decide that prayers shouldn’t be said.  How hard would be to simply not say a prayer and just politely wait till the council is finished?  Or, why not wait outside until the prayer is finished if it’s so horribly offensive?

I do not believe people like him or the agencies that support his view and give him support, are really as “offended” as they claim to be.  But the civil rights industry, which has become the enforcement arm of the politically correct left, which is now a competing religion itself, must find strife or create strife wherever they can.  And if you’re gonna pick a fight with a group, I guess they figure correctly, always pick on a soft target. 

Orgs. like the Natl. Secular Society make it appear they speak for all atheists or people who only have some doubts.  They claim that prayers said in a hall where there are ppl of other religions, or non believers, are made to feel uncomfortable and excluded.
BS!  That’s something brand new in the last dozen years and they’ve managed to glom on to a few idiots who suddenly find for the very first time, that they are also offended.

This is totally serious stuff and it’s being reported that both sides on the issue are getting lawered up.  I’ve never been one to warn about the falling sky but this case could have some serious ramifications if this loser manages to win his case.
It could conceivably lead to the abolition of the Coronation Oath, as reported by the Telegraph’s Religious Affairs Editor, Martin Beckford.

I guess I’m really an outsider on two counts then because; never at any time did I ever feel all those terrible things that the Secular Society says I felt.  Not even once.
So either they are full of it, lying , or I’ve been deaf, dumb and blind for 74 years.

For me personally, and I stress I speak not for BMEWS or any of the folks who comment here.  This has been a Christian country for over a thousand years.  There have been divisions and sometimes bloody ones among Christians.  Some pretty bad things were done by some pretty bad people over time, using religion as their excuse to bring others to heel.  The past doings both good and evil have no relation to what most Western European nations are in fact. They are Christian.  Why is that so hard to accept?  Why should that and prayers said by the mostly faithful cause unbelievers to feel “excluded” and “uncomfortable?”

Frankly and finally, I don’t think all that many non believers care about this. I think the majority, like people of faith, simply want to get on with their lives and avoid conflict where possible.  But sadly, it only takes one, with one single-minded agenda, to make enough noise and bother and create the impression that there are thousands who support their view.
That is one thing the left is very, very accomplished at.  I’d say they were masters of the art.  Shame that.


March of the PC brigade: Atheists in court battle to ban town hall prayers

Former councillor said he was ‘disadvantaged and embarrassed’

By STEVE DOUGHTY

An atheist campaign to ban the historic practice of saying prayers at council meetings yesterday found its way to the High Court.
Former councillor Clive Bone, backed by an anti-religious campaign group, claims the tradition breaches his human right to freedom of belief.
Mr Bone said he was ‘disadvantaged and embarrassed’ when Christian prayers were said in the council chamber.
Backed by the National Secular Society, Mr Bone wants prayers to be ruled out of the formal agenda of any local authority meetings.
His case reached the High Court yesterday at the culmination of a three-year campaign.
Success could open the way for a drive to force Parliament to abandon saying prayers as part of Commons and Lords business.
The NSS has based its legal challenge on the claim that Mr Bone, as an atheist, should not be subjected to religious ritual, and that to do so breaks his right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.
However it was revealed yesterday that he is no longer a councillor in Bideford in Devon. Town clerk Heather Blackburn confirmed: ‘Mr Bone did not stand for re-election in May 2011.’
The Society said yesterday: ‘The NSS is taking Bideford Town Council to court after receiving a complaint from one of its councillors, Clive Bone, that he was disadvantaged and embarrassed as a non-believer by the saying of prayers as part of council business.

READ MORE


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 12/03/2011 at 05:54 PM   
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calendar   Wednesday - November 16, 2011

Three Wives? Two Husbands? Move To Canada, Quick!

This is a very quick follow up to Peiper’s post below on the ‘honor killings’ in Canada. And a HUGE indication of cultural decline.


Canada: Come On Up, Bring All Your Wives! ??



January 4, 2011

A court hearing challenging Canada’s anti-polygamy law on religious freedom grounds resumes Wednesday in British Columbia and will eventually include testimony from men and women who are living in multiple-partner marriages.

The hearing will not immediately change the status quo, as British Columbia Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert Bauman’s ruling will not bind any courts.

But his ruling will address questions about whether polygamy is a criminal activity under Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and, if it is illegal, under what circumstances. Observers predict that if Justice Bauman’s ruling is appealed, the issue could end up before the Supreme Court of Canada, which could make a binding ruling about polygamy.

The legal hearing revolves around the British Columbia community of Bountiful. Formed in 1946, its 400 or so members belong to a breakaway Mormon sect that permits men to have multiple wives.

The challengers of Canada’s anti-polygamy law say that the nation’s 1982 Charter of Rights and Freedoms gives people the right to practice “plural marriage.”

For believers in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, “celestial marriage” — i.e., plural marriage — “is an essential FLDS religious principle,” and “unless the faithful participate in it, they cannot enter into the fullness of glory in the kingdom of heaven in the afterlife,” William John Walsh, an expert on FLDS, said in an affidavit to the court.

The FLDS long ago split from the mainstream Mormon Church, which formerly practiced polygamy but ceased the practice in 1890 and condemns the FLDS as heretical.

People who practice Islam, Wicca and other religions also are adversely affected by the anti-polygamy law, Vancouver lawyers George K. Macintosh, Ludmila B. Herbst and Tim Dickson said in a brief to the court.



November 8, 2011

Landmark polygamy ruling expected in two weeks

VANCOUVER — The British Columbia Supreme Court is expected to release its long-awaited ruling in a polygamy case on Nov. 23. In April, after 42 days of hearing evidence about whether or not Canada’s polygamy law is constitutional, Chief Justice Robert Bauman reserved judgment. Bauman’s ruling will be posted on the B.C. Supreme Court website, according to information released by court officials Tuesday.

A lockup for reporters is being organized just prior to the release of the ruling.

Lawyers for the governments of Canada and B.C. called witnesses to testify to the harm caused by polygamy. They argued that the practice puts women and children at sufficient risk to justify limiting religious freedoms.

A lawyer appointed by the court marshalled the groups that say the law is over-broad and unconstitutional and should be struck down. Those groups included the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and the B.C. Civil Liberties Association.



Wiki data:

Canada: It is illegal by Section 293 of the Criminal Code of Canada. Bigamy is banned by Section 290. However, the law banning polygamy is not enforced by the government. As of January 2009, no person has been prosecuted in over sixty years. A reference case is currently under way in the Supreme Court of British Columbia challenging the constitutionality of this law.



November 6, 2011: An opinion

There isn’t a shred of evidence that polygamy benefits women. Even the UN, often a laughingstock of blind ideologues, has declared that polygamy violates women’s equality rights. Still, that hasn’t stopped academics (who should know better) from suggesting that polygamy be decriminalized.

The latest educator to jump on the decriminalization bandwagon is U of A poli-sci professor Lois Harder. In a recent study written for the Vanier Institute of the Family, Harder wonders if women in polygamous families might be better off if polygamy wasn’t a crime.

“Decriminalizing polygamy would not entail expanding the definition of marriage to include polygamous marriages,” she wrote. “Rather, it would provide a firmer foundation from which to protect women and children in polygamous relationships from exploitation.”

Yeah, right. Remove polygamy from the Criminal Code and all those young girls and women who’ve been brainwashed by the men in Bountiful, B.C., and other polygamous communities will shake off the shackles of exploitation and go to university to become doctors, lawyers and, oh, poli-sci profs.
...
It’s incredibly naive to believe that polygamy can exist without the exploitation of women. The females in these dysfunctional relationships may not think they’re being taken advantage of. They may, in fact, insist they freely chose such a lifestyle.

After all, what woman wouldn’t want to get married in her mid-teens to someone old enough to be her father or grandfather, drop out of school, have a baby every year and share her husband with a bunch of sister-wives? Isn’t that every woman’s dream?
...
Polygamy is simply incompatible with equality and basic human dignity. It’s soul-destroying and merely feeds the deranged dictates of pathological egotists.



Mohammad Shafia’s house rules

At the Shafias’, court hears, men were the law, women property and teen behavior worthy of execution

On paper, Mohammad Shafia was the ideal immigrant, a wealthy, self-made businessman eager to inject his dollars into the Canadian economy. An Afghan who made his fortune in Dubai real estate, Shafia wasted little time setting up shop in his adopted country. In 2008, a year after arriving in Montreal, he purchased a $2-million strip mall in Laval—with a cash down payment of $1.6 million. He launched a company that imported and distributed clothing, household goods and construction material. And he chose the posh suburb of Brossard to build a sprawling mansion with plenty of room for all 10 members of his polygamous clan: himself, two wives and seven children.

The new house was still under construction on June 30, 2009, when three of the Shafia girls—Zainab, 19, Sahar, 17, and Geeti, 13—were discovered at the bottom of the Rideau Canal, floating inside a sunken black Nissan that also contained the lifeless body of their “stepmother,” Shafia’s first wife, Rona Amir Mohammad. The four passengers appeared, at first glance, to be the victims of a late-night joyride gone horribly wrong. Within weeks, however, detectives in Kingston, Ont., offered a far more chilling version of events, laying first-degree-murder charges against a trio of suspects: Mohammad Shafia, the dead girls’ father; Tooba Yahya, their mother; and Hamed Shafia, their brother.

Today, more than two years later, the Shafia patriarch sleeps in a tiny cell with his eldest son. His wife—the one that’s still breathing—is locked in a separate prison.

Much much more at this link.

Canada long ago fell off the left edge of the earth as far as I’m concerned, and has become a socialist cesspool. I would be amazed if the Canadian Supreme Court upheld the existing law, and I’d be even more amazed if they demanded that it actually be enforced. Selective enforcement of laws is one of the ways that a socialist tyranny hides behind a facade of democracy - just ask Obama and Holder. I fully expect the crazy Canucks to rule that polygamy is perfectly fine and dandy. And that any animal over 40lbs is capable of unspoken consent to a human sexual interaction.

The West is going straight to hell.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/16/2011 at 01:21 PM   
Filed Under: • CULTURE IN DECLINEReligionRoPMA •  
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calendar   Sunday - October 30, 2011

Well, that was fun!

Just got off the line, commenting on this this idioti’s idiotic commentary::

http://townhall.com/columnists/michaelyoussef/2011/10/30/common_threads_between_islam_and%c2%a0mormonism

If you scroll down to the comments, I’m posting under the name ‘cruithni’.

Anyway, the author of this post is trying to equate Momonism with Islam. He fails on several points, two of which I commented on. And, of course, I was attacked by idiots who don’t know their own Bible. It was fun, but, I’ve been there, done that. Though I daresay I could argue them ‘til one of us died.


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 10/30/2011 at 01:11 PM   
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calendar   Thursday - September 22, 2011

All’s Well That Ends Wells

Saving Jesse

Conservation/Renovation of Medieval Jesse Window at Wells Cathedral in UK begins



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The Jesse Window at Wells Cathedral is one of the most splendid examples of 14th century stained glass in Europe. It dates from about 1340 and, considering its age, is still remarkably intact. Fortunately, the window has survived the vicissitudes of time and British history (narrowly escaping destruction during the English Civil War) and so what we see today is basically how medieval glaziers designed and created it and how our ancestors viewed it before us.


Less than two hours west of Peiper’s house, over in southwest England, a bit past the charmingly named town of Shepton Mallet, south east of Cheddar, south west of Bristol, north east of Glastonbury, on the south edge of the Mendip Hills - in other words, about where Camelot was - is the small city of Wells. It has been incorporated as a city since 1205, even though the current population is about 11,000. This ancient place was given it’s name in a blunt, no-nonsense way because there are two major springs there that give clear water. And in thanks for those founts, the place has been sacred ground since before time. Wells Cathedral sits on the site of an earlier Saxon church, which replaced a Roman shrine, which replaced an earlier ancient shrine of the Britons dedicated to the Goddess. Holy grounds, Highlander, since forever. It has been a Christian church since the year 705 at the latest; the font survives from Saxon times.


As its name shows, the ”quiet Cathedral city of poetic imagination,” so charmingly situated in a hollow under the Mendip Hills, is a place of springs, wells and fountains. Tradition tells that “it was precisely because of those waters” that, in AD 705, King Ine, at the suggestion of St. Aldhelm, Bishop of Sherborne, built a minster church to the honour of St. Andrew. The famous springs, after which the town is named, had probably been venerated from at least the Iron Age. The dedication suggests they were a sacred site associated with Anu, the Celtic Mother-Goddess later adopted by the Romans.

The cathedral was built across nearly the whole of the Middle Ages, from 1176-1490. It was the very first Gothic church in England, using the then-revolutionary pointed arch. While the outside is an archetypal Gothic splendor in white stone, it is rather simple, almost restrained when compared to excesses of many of the Andalusian cathedrals of the same era, even though the outside of Wells was originally decorated with more than 500 gilded statues of saints and other notable figures, of which 300 are still in place.


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Inside this grand edifice are some of the most elegant and peaceful examples of medieval vaulting that can be found; magnificent fornications* that managed to escape the desecrations of the English Civil War. The whole complex is so fully and so skillfully detailed that it would take a week to view properly, and probably years to fully appreciate, from the statues to the famous Scissors Arch, to the still working whimsical 1390 pre-Copernican clock in which the sun orbits the earth, and two pair of mechanical knights joust each other every 15 minutes while a mechanical quarterjack rings the bells with his hands and feet. But if you can’t visit as 300,000 people a year do, Google. Once again there are thousands of photgraphs and hundreds of pages available online.


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big pic link: Jesse window and vaulting at Wells

The last picture above is the choir in the quire. This has to be one of the oldest organized singing groups on earth; they’ve been at it for 1102 years now, many hundred years longer than this cathedral has even existed. Religion at Wells is old.

But I’m doing my best to be concise here, which is mighty difficult given the wonders of this place. There is so much more here that I am not even mentioning, but I do want to get (finally!! Drew, you’re a windbag, I swear!!) to the heart of the post: the restoration of the Jesse Window.

Works begins on Jesse Window at Wells Cathedral

Work is set to begin on a £500,000 project to restore an historic 14th Century window at Wells Cathedral. The Jesse Window is a stained glass window depicting the genealogy of Jesus dating back to Abraham.

Conservation work is set to begin on 29 September and will involve releading selected areas of glass and cleaning the paint layers. In 2010 custom-made barriers of glazing panes were attached to the stonework of the cathedral to protect the window.

The window is situated at the east end of the cathedral and dates to about 1340. The cathedral’s dean, the Very Reverend John Clarke, said: “Recent inspections have shown that some of the lead is bowing. “Lead glass panels are bulging and loose. More significantly the medieval glass is suffering the effects of condensation and mould growth. “This is in turn attacking the painted layers on the glass causing the paint to peel and the glass to corrode.”

The window was made using yellow, red and green glass as well as silver stain, a compound of silver applied to the glass which can create hues of pale yellow to deep orange.

The Jesse Window is shown, a bit out of focus, in the picture with the vaulting above. Here’s another partial shot that shows the Skycell interior airship taking ultra-high resolution digital photographs of it, which is yet another fascinating story about Wells. And I haven’t told the story about how the chimneys once fell down and killed the Bishop and his wife.


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So it’s a bit of good news, part of the enormous and never ending work that keeps these old cathedrals alive and vibrant.  An art show based on the Jesse Window is scheduled for mid October -

An Exhibition of Paintings by Richard Pomeroy, to coincide with the restoration of Wells Cathedral’s famous 14th-century stained glass window. 9 - 16 October 2011. The Chapter House, Wells Cathedral. The Tree of Jesse was a development of biblical imagery in medieval story telling. In part it is a tracing of Jesus’ ancestry much as the Anglo Saxon Chronicles emphasised Alfred’s ancestry to justify his position as King of Wessex.

See More Below The Fold

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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/22/2011 at 12:58 PM   
Filed Under: • ArchitectureReligion •  
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calendar   Wednesday - July 27, 2011

Just for fun!

Why? Because I can!

Also, a friend recently emailed me with a request for this photo. He was teaching his kids about St. Paul. I’ll explain after the photo:

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1986. Rome, Italy. Just me and Caesar. Behind me is, according to local legend, the jail that St. Paul was incarcerated in before he was crucified.  Hence my friend’s request for the photo.


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 07/27/2011 at 02:43 PM   
Filed Under: • PersonalReligion •  
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calendar   Sunday - July 03, 2011

Kiss That Gold Goodbye

$11 Billion Treasure Found In Indian Temple



Local Royal Family has run temple for 20 generations and not lost a coin. Government will now provide security.


A treasure trove of gold and silver jewelry, coins and precious stones said to be worth billions of dollars has been found in a Hindu temple in southern India, officials said. The valuables have an estimated preliminary worth of over 500 billion rupees ($11.2 billion), said Kerala Chief Secretary K. Jayakumar, catapulting the temple into the league of India’s richest temples.

The thousands of necklaces, coins and precious stones have been kept in at least five underground vaults at the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple which is renowned for its intricate sculptures.

“We are yet to open one more secret chamber which has not been opened for nearly 140 years,” Jayakumar told AFP.

The actual value of the treasure haul can be ascertained only after it is examined by the archaeological department, said Jayakumar.

The temple, dedicated to Hindu lord Vishnu, was built hundreds of years ago by the king of Travancore and donations by devotees have been kept in the temple’s vaults since. A necklace found on Thursday was 18 feet (six metres) long. Thousands of gold coins have also been found.

I’d say that the treasure hasn’t been found; the temple folks have known it was there since ... forever. It’s just now somebody put the word out.

India’s Supreme Court recently ordered that the temple be managed by the state to ensure the security of valuables at the shrine. Until now, the Thirupathy temple in southern Andhra Pradesh state was believed to be India’s richest temple with offerings from devotees worth 320 billion rupees.

The revelation about the huge riches in the Padmanabhaswamy temple has forced police to sharply step install security cameras and alarms. Authorities also plan to set up a commando force for security, said Kerala director general of police Jacob Punnoose.

“Now it?s known all over the world that the Padmanabhaswamy temple has jewels worth billions of rupees we have decided to assign it maximum security,” Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy told AFP.

Kiss your riches goodbye and go back to living in the mud while starving. I can guarantee you that the government is going to steal, lose, misplace, whatever, this treasure. Accounting errors. And the people will never get anything from it. Not that they ever have.

I don’t know the exact age of the temple, and the $11.2 billion figure is preliminary. But if the place has been around for ... 500 years ... that’s about $23 million in treasure donated every single year. While the people go without. And in India, they go without for reals. Without food, without clothing, without shelter, without everything and anything. Without life. And the temple gets all their wealth and then sits on it FOREVER and does nothing with it. But now it will all be stolen by corrupt officials.

Way to go.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/03/2011 at 03:30 PM   
Filed Under: • InternationalReligion •  
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calendar   Tuesday - June 14, 2011

Really Ironic

Ancient Reliquary of Saint of Missing Objects

Stolen From Church




LOS ANGELES—A 780-year-old religious relic of St. Anthony of Padua has been stolen, and parishioners at a Southern California Catholic church are praying to the patron saint of lost causes and missing objects for its speedy return.

The relic was stolen from inside a cabinet beside the altar at St. Anthony Catholic Church in Long Beach on Monday, the feast day of the church’s namesake.

The Rev. Jose Magana said he decided to bring out the relic this year, on the 780th anniversary of the death of St. Anthony, because many of his parishioners have lost hope in the rough economy.

The church opened at 6 a.m., and when Magana turned to the relic during the 9 a.m. Mass, it had disappeared. Magana could hear his parishioners gasp when they realized it was gone, but he continued with the service and called police immediately afterward.

Long Beach police Lt. Paul Arcala said the relic is housed in a 16-inch tall reliquary case with angel-shaped handles made of gold and silver on either side. He declined to describe it further because that might jeopardize the investigation.

Police were looking for a person who was seen at all five Masses on Sunday and was unusually curious about the relic, Arcala said. Witnesses said she got too close and had to be asked to step away. The woman was in her late 30s and was short and heavyset with wavy, shoulder-length black hair.

...

“People here are pretty upset but they’re praying. They’re praying to St. Anthony for the return of his own object.”

It takes a special kind of low life to steal from a church. Ripping off the alms box is bad enough, but stealing the religious possessions is far worse.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 06/14/2011 at 11:34 AM   
Filed Under: • CrimeReligion •  
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calendar   Wednesday - May 25, 2011

Church doubles congregation … could this be why?

ok ... While I think it’s a cute story, I don’t think the church actually went out looking for a cute blonde vicar. One must understand that this newspaper (DM, Damn Mail, or Daily Mail) does take some license with headlines and thrust of some articles.  But they’re fun and we miss Brit papers when we’re visiting home.


Never mind hymn.. look at her! Church doubles congregation by hiring blonde 29-year-old vicar

By PAUL HARRIS
Last updated at 9:25 AM on 25th May 2011

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And it came to pass that the people did flock to the local church in great number.

And the number grew each week. And soon, it became a multitude.

And here they did sit in the vaulted Victorian majesty of St Mary The Virgin, in a leafy land known as Caterham, Surrey.

They had come to hear the Word of the Lord. And more particularly, it seems, to take a peek at the new curate as she spake the Word unto them.

For lo! The latest arrival at St Mary’s was a rather foxy young blonde with a comely smile and a degree in theology from Cambridge.

And whatever it was that Stephanie ‘Steph’ Nadarajah brought to the masses, the Word quickly spread.

In six months since taking up her new ministry, the 29 year-old former NHS manager has seen Sunday congregations double in size from an average 75 to a respectable 150 plus.

Not to mention seeing a few heads turning as she travels the parish in her curate’s garb. ‘The first time I walked down the street in Caterham in a dog collar I was so embarrassed,’ she admits.

‘I thought if anyone spoke to me I would just hand it over and say: “You’re right, I’m not who I claim to be – I picked it out of the wardrobe.” But if people look and say: “Goodness me, that’s not what I expected,” and listen to what I say, then that’s great.’

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And her impact on the good folk of Caterham? ‘You’re always treading a fine line between using the person that you are, and what God has given you to do good things in his name – and not to attract all the attention yourself and for it to become a sort of personality cult.’

Steph, who is married to a management consultant she has known since her schooldays, says she does get some ‘shocked looks’ when she tells locals she is the new curate. But one convert praised her yesterday as being ‘just what we need to blow out the cobwebs – a bit of feminine vibrancy’.

The Rev Nadarajah, as she is formally known, took a ‘massive drop’ in salary when she chose the cloth over her high-flying job commissioning work for the health service – but says she couldn’t be happier.

She held various management posts in the NHS before working as a pastoral assistant in Putney, South-West London.

In common with many churches, St Mary’s was enduring a gradual decline in congregations. Then along came Steph. It couldn’t quite be classed as a miracle, but the pews started to fill again. The Rev Nadarajah herself described it as ‘thriving’. Likewise, contributions to a fund to raise £80,000 for a new church hall began to swell.

Caterham, whose alumni include presenter Angus Deayton, boasts an association with model Katie Price, who has a home in a nearby village. St Mary’s was built in 1866 to accommodate a growing population attracted by the expansion of the railways.

Steph is a far more modern thinker – she has a Facebook page, keeps fit by running, enjoys fine wine and loves shopping. And yes, she is only too aware of what TV’s Vicar of Dibley had done for women in the church. ‘It’s mentioned all the time,’ she said.

‘It did a lot for women’s ministry in making it acceptable for women to be ordained. But let’s make it more ordinary.’

Parishioner Andrew Spencer, 52, welcomed her arrival: ‘It’s great to see an attractive young lady at the church,’ he said. ‘She’s not just a pretty face though – she’s intelligent and a great listener.’

SOURCE


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 05/25/2011 at 01:46 PM   
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calendar   Sunday - March 20, 2011

Convert to Christianity or Die!

I’m thinking I should just start posting the email correspondence with my old friend in Afghanistan. He works in Army intelligence…

(pause for obligatory Army intelligence jokes… Done? Good. Let’s continue...)

...and sends me stuff he finds. We sometimes get into interesting conversations over the most obscure things. One example is my previous post. He simply sent me something he thought was ‘cute’ and I ‘fisked’ it as Rich K mentioned. The surprise was when my friend agreed with my ‘fisking’…

AH
well put...I had not thought about that tag line in that way.  I guess perspective is everything.

I have been spoiled, you see. Though it broke the bank, so to speak, my children went to Catholic school until I got over to Germany.  There the military requires all uniformed members with children in their schools to work with the teachers, often visiting classes during the duty day.  This has led to teachers, heck, the whole system, being a WHOLE lot more accountable. My wife and I have even submitted formal complaints against one teacher a while back and she was fired (several parents banded together and the administration had to bow to our wishes) for incompetence.

So, he sent me another missive, which I proceeded to expound upon. The article he sent is here. My reply:

______,

Seriously, I’m having a hard time picking sides in the Mideast turmoil. Both sides are, as near as I can tell, Islamic. Sunni, or Shiite. Both are not friends of the USA.

Personally? I’d let them bleed each other, then move in and reclaim all of the oil fields and facilities that they ‘nationalized’ back in the 50s and 60s.

Oh, one other thing: if they seriously want our help, they are all required to convert to Christianity.

I’m serious about this. Islam is not a religion. It is a fascist political movement disguised as a religion. Fine. You want to mix religion and politics, I can do that too. No foreign aid unless you convert to Christianity. No humanitarian aid in event of a natural disaster unless you convert to Christianity.

Certainly no military aid unless you convert to Christianity.

Well, that would be a large part of my Mideast policy if I were President.

I’d also not recognize ‘Palestinians’. They don’t exist. There was a WW1-era ‘Palestinian Mandate’ that the British governed. It was broken up in 1948. Israel was one result. Jordan was another. The so-called ‘Palestinians’ are those who a) didn’t want to move to Jordan, b) had their lands occupied as a result of Israeli victories in 1948, 1967, and 1973. Such lands that were NOT ‘Palestinian’, but were either Egyptian, Jordanian, or Syrian. At no time has Israel occupied a Palestinian state. No ‘Palestinian’ state has ever declared war on Israel. Israel never defeated and occupied any ‘Palestinian’ land.

Why? Because no ‘Palestinian’ state has ever existed.

But, wasn’t it it Hermann Goering who said something like ‘a lie repeated often enough becomes the truth.’?

_____ replied:

AH
well said

I TOTALLY AGREE: Red on Red is a good thing for us.  Who cares how many they massacre?  They will do it anyway.  I had not thought about the conversion angle, but you know, that has merit.  We could use that as leverage.  SO...Do you Arabs REALLY want our help?  OK, here is the price… We only help Christians.  We withdraw all aid to any country (note, I agree, Palastine is NOT a country) that remains muslim.  That would weed out our real friends from foes...oh and save us oodles of cash.

What weapons, sure, we will sell items to you, as long as they are not state of the art, and btw, go ahead and slaughter each other some more.

Opinions? What does the BMEWS community think?


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 03/20/2011 at 01:12 PM   
Filed Under: • EditorialsMiddle-EastReligion •  
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calendar   Tuesday - March 01, 2011

Oy, such a holiday

It’s a Breakfast Food, M’kay?

Today is National Pancake Day




No, its has nothing to do with Saint Pancake

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(thanks SondraK)



And it has very little to do with cute bunnies who can balance them

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And while there may be a crowning of this year’s Pancake Princess

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mmm, yummy pancakes!



Mostly it’s about charity




IHOP is giving out free orders of pancakes today in hopes of raising money for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Stop in, eat up, and drop a couple bucks. Bacon and coffee not included.

Since beginning its National Pancake Day celebration in 2006, IHOP has raised more than $5.35 million to support charities in the communities in which it operates. While IHOP’s National Pancake Day typically takes place on Shrove Tuesday, this year, the company will host its free pancake event one week earlier on Tuesday, March 1 to build buzz and excitement prior to Shrove Tuesday. With your help, we hope to raise $2.3 million for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and other local charities!

Known also as Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras, National Pancake Day dates back several centuries to when the English prepped for fasting during Lent. Strict rules prohibited the eating of all dairy products during Lent, so pancakes were made to use up the supply of eggs, milk, butter and other dairy products...hence the name Pancake Tuesday or Shrove Tuesday.


How about that one, lefties? A corporation getting involved in a Christian tradition in a Christian manner! I’m expecting protests, judicial fiats, and cries of racism to be all over the news.



An explanation of the title for Americans: in the UK they consider pancakes a dessert item. Seriously, the thought of pancakes for breakfast is anathema to them, even with a double side of bacon. Worse, they don’t even have proper Bisquick over there. Sure, they have something in that bright yellow box you can bake with, but it’s not the same. Peiper will attest to that fact; I’ve had to send him emergency supplies of the stuff.

On the other hand, England does do this holiday better than we do. Being Britons, with their great sense of tradition, they hold pancake races, and have done so for hundreds of years now. Since 1445 - long before Columbus came over here in his leaky little boat - they have been running about in public with pancakes. I’m assuming that those are actually fresh pancakes, and not the original ones from 1445, but with the English you never know.

Oh, you think this is another one of my “fake but accurate” posts, that I’m making up the sport of pancake racing? Ha! Surprise!

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The annual pancake race in Olney


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/01/2011 at 03:22 PM   
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