Day: March 25, 2009

PCUSA considers deep cuts

The proposal reduces expenses by $3.99 million and uses previous years’ reserves of $5.93 million to cover the shortfall. The net effect is a 4 percent reduction in the 2009 mission budget ? from $110,885,317 to $106,914,584 ? and represents a 16 percent decrease in the unrestricted portion of the budget and a 1 percent decrease in the restricted portion. – Presbyterian News Service

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Lay employee census conclusions

In terms of the formal structures of employment, such as the correct assignment of employees into exempt and non-exempt from overtime compensation classifications, the creation or updating of job descriptions, and annual performance evaluations, the record of the Church as a whole is poor. These weak formal employment practices of the Church gradually erode the sense of mission and joy that lay employees receive from their work.

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Debating the charitable deduction

President Obama’s proposal to limit the tax deductibility of charitable contributions would effectively transfer more than $7 billion a year from the nation’s charitable institutions to the federal government. But the high-income taxpayers affected by the rule change are likely to cut their charitable giving by as much as the increase in their tax bills, which would, ironically, leave their remaining income and personal consumption unchanged.

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C of E considers sale of church to SSPX

The Society of St Pius X has expressed an interest in purchasing St George’s Church in Gorton, Manchester. One of its bishops, Richard Williamson, provoked anger after saying he did not believe Nazi gas chambers existed. He later apologised. The Church Commissioners which manages the Church of England’s historic assets is considering the sale and has asked for feedback by the end of the month.

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Episcopal services resume at Tejon St. property on Palm Sunday

But both sides will be back in Judge Larry Schwartz’s courtroom today to argue when Grace Church & St. Stephen’s CANA should be off the premises. Martin Nussbaum, attorney for the diocese, wants CANA out by April 1, a date that Schwartz initially OK’d. Gregory Walta, attorney for the CANA congregation, filed a motion Tuesday asking it be given until at least April 7

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Humble Mary

A humble person is one who, like the humble Mary, says, “The Powerful One has done great things in me.” Each of us has an individual greatness. God would not be our author if we were something worthless. You and I and all of us are worth very much, because we are creatures of God, and God has prodigally given his wonderful gifts to every person.

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And a virgin shall conceive

In Mary’s day she was seen as property. She was vulnerable in a culture that did not value women and especially not girls. Their value came from their connection to a man, first to their fathers and then to their husbands and their ability to bear sons. Even today young girls are at risk in many countries to be sold or bartered away.

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