Beliefnet
Jesus Creed

Below the Rock of Cashel, an ancient monastery
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Jim Martin has a very good post right here.
Israel and Palestine, a Messianic Jewish perspective.
Tamara on releasing the power of Jesus.

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Garrison Keillor: “And if you want to write, you just write and publish yourself. No need to ask permission, just open a Web site. And if you want to write a book, you just write it, send it to Lulu.com or BookSurge at Amazon or PubIt or ExLibris and you’ve got yourself an e-book. No problem. And that is the future of publishing: 18 million authors in America, each with an average of 14 readers, eight of whom are blood relatives. Average annual earnings: $1.75.”

Bill Donahue’s new series on Catalytic leaders.
Patrick Mitchel’s final post on the baptism issues… very good series.

Brett on scratching where they itch.
Kevin on the origins of interpretation.
Meanderings in the News
1. This is the only way genuine change in Afghanistan can occur: “U.S. diplomats and military officials view the rebellion as a milestone in the nearly nine-year-long war. For the first time in this phase of the conflict, ordinary Afghans in the violence-racked south have risen on their own to reclaim territory under insurgent control.”
2. Frank Rich:That action [on stopping the oil and recompense for the victims] could be a turning point for Obama if he builds on it. And he must. In this 9/11, it’s not just the future of the gulf coast, energy policy or his presidency that’s in jeopardy. What’s also being tarred daily by the gushing oil is the very notion that government can accomplish anything. The current crisis in that faith predates this disaster. In the short history of the Obama White House, two of its most urgent projects, reducing unemployment and pacifying Afghanistan, have yet to yield persuasive results. The dividends on the third, health care reform, won’t be in the mail for years.”
RahmEm.jpg3. Rahm Emanuel: “Washington insiders say he will quit within six to eight months in frustration at their unwillingness to “bang heads together” to get policy pushed through. Mr Emanuel, 50, enjoys a good working relationship with Mr Obama but they are understood to have reached an understanding that diffe
rences over style mean he will serve only half the full four-year term…. It is well known in Washington that arguments have developed between pragmatic Mr Emanuel, a veteran in Congress where he was known for driving through compromises, and the idealistic inner circle who followed Mr Obama to the White House.

His abrasive style has rubbed some people the wrong way, while there has been frustration among Mr Obama’s closest advisers that he failed to deliver a smooth ride for the president’s legislative programme that his background promised.”

4. What a deal! Selling “as is.”
6. George Wood on educational reform and Arne Duncan’s theories: “But reading the popular press, and listening to the chatter from Washington, I have just found out that we are not part of the movement to ‘reform’ schools. You see, we did not do all the stuff that the new ‘reformers’ think is vital to improve our schools. We did not fire the staff, eliminate tenure, or pay teachers based on student test scores. We did not become a charter school. We did not take away control from a locally elected school board and give it to a mayor. We did not bring in a bunch of two-year short-term teachers. … Nope, we did not do any of these things. Because we knew they would not work…. So would somebody please explain to me why the new reform agenda is made up of so many unproven or failed strategies? Everywhere I turn the mantra is the same–fire teachers, close schools, start charters….What we know is this: To turn around a school and keep that success going requires a commitment to staff development and teacher support. You cannot just keep hiring rookie teachers or threaten veteran teachers with ‘death by test scores’ and hope somehow to create a culture of learning and engagement. At our school we rely on weekly if not daily staff development activities, school wide learning strategies, and staff evaluation focused on improving instruction and cultivating the leadership skills of teachers to help and coach their colleagues.”
StJohn.jpg7. David Dunning: “Dunning and Kruger argued in their paper, “When people are incompetent in the strategies they adopt to achieve success and satisfaction, they suffer a dual burden: Not only do they reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the ability to realize it.  Instead, like Mr. Wheeler, they are left with the erroneous impression they are doing just fine.” It became known as the Dunning-Kruger Effect — our incompetence masks our ability to recognize our incompetence.  But just how prevalent is this effect?
8. The Catacombs of Rome, and the unveiling of images of Peter, Paul, Andrew, and John. Here’s John! (–>)
9. Timothy Dalrymple takes Jim Wallis to the mat on whether or not the Tea Party is Christian. Worth reading for the good of mutual education.
10. And from the same excellent website, James Hannam debates a young earth creationist.
Meanderings in Sports
Why in the world are those soccers so full of histrionics? These are world-class athletes acting like cry-babies. Thus: “Many who saw the replay wondered whether Ke?ta’s fall was the tournament’s latest example of what officials call simulation. Much of the flopping, flailing and falling in soccer is little more than diving to the turf in an effort to dupe the referee.” 
The much-beloved Cubs announcer Ron Santo, who deserves to be in the Hall of Fame, will be cutting back on his schedule.
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