Update April 2009
A Note From Ed
With the Mormons and the Masons acting pretty quiet this week, let me share my thoughts in a few other areas. Stuff I don’t usually talk about.
Going through my daily email is usually a joy. There are so many diverse points of view and areas of need, people to meet; people to bless and be blessed by; doctrines to explain or defend. Every day is different. Many days, the e-mails total over 100 contacts. It is a workout and I am expected to always be right about everything I write.
I have four separate e-mail accounts that feed this system. One is my really personal, family one, one is the regular firstname.lastname@example.org account that brings in e-mail from the web and the third is sort of a ‘worker’ address that I use in responding to all my ministry emails and purchases, etc. That one has been tied to my e-mail service provider for over ten years. The fourth is from my on line e-mail Newsletter Service provider. Whatever the routing, they all get to me through the magic of the Internet. It sounds more complicated than it really is.
It’s sort of like trying to understand our toaster. I know that when I push the bread down, the little wires get red hot and the bread gets toasted. I don’t understand why the wires get red hot every time and don’t just burn up or why you don’t get an electric shock if you touch them. I actually tested that a few years ago. I pushed the lever down when it was empty and touched the not-yet-red-hot-wires. Nothing. I know there is a reason for this being so. I just don’t know what it is.
The older I get, the more I am realizing that there is a lot I don’t need to know. I just know that, somehow, all these email from all over the world end up on a screen on my desk ever morning, just waiting. I grab my coffee and have at them with great interest and zeal.
It would be really great if some of you readers would send in a gift this week. We are really hitting rock bottom with the amount of support that has been coming in. Many dear long-time supporters have written in and apologized that they are in a tough spot and can’t give and I fully understand that. Carol and I have had to cut back in some of our giving for the same reasons.
But of just a third of you who receive this newsletter sent in $10 a month, we would be in the solid black every month. Simple. But hard to accomplish.
If you would just go to our website www.saintsalive.com and click through on the Give a Donation bar in the left column of the main web page, it would only take you a minute and it is as easy as pie. And we would be beyond grateful. And your gifts are still tax deductible.
Another popular form of moving money through the web is PayPal. We use it for almost all our purchases and we like it because we always have control of our personal data. If that works for you, too, just send your gift to us at our PayPal account address, email@example.com. It takes even less time. You will still receive your gift acknowledgement and tax deduction.
Yes, it really is my Interactive Blog. The one that tells it all, including my somewhat humorous ramblings on the joys of grand parenting and growing old in the slow lane. I also deal with my views regarding politics.
I include hunks of newsletters, special articles and personal studies, photos and best of all; it is open for your input, dialogue, questions and challenges.
It is Not a place to curse and revile me, use bad language and tell me what a son of Satan I am or you are. There is a filter and it is me.
Please Don’t Get Political.
I don’t want to get political, but there are a few things going on in Washington that have me more than confused. I wish someone could just explain to me why Congress and the Senate and the media have been screaming for blood over the bonuses paid by AIG. Shouldn’t they be screaming at Sen. Dodd, who at the White House’s [sez him] instruction wrote in the approval for those bonuses after the bill came out of committee.
Seems AIG was only doing what Dodd stimulus shot in the arm has instructed them to do. I thought “Wow, these guys have to be really stupid.” Then, when the White told Congress that as a result of AIG’s wasteful use of the stimulus dollars, it needed to grant the president more sweeping controls over the entire financial industry.. I thought ... “Wow, that was cunning. Who are the fools now?”
Will somebody please tell me what the heck is going on? I’m still back there trying to understand my toaster.
E-Mail Response to a Mormon Apologist
This week, in the email response to my E- Newsletter, was a letter from a Mormon, who challenged me a week or so ago to respond to three ‘accusations’ from groups like FARMS [LDS apologetics group]. He claimed that I had lied when I said I answered all questions regarding doctrinal heresies of the LDS Church. He said I never answered the ones he listed. I gave him several web addresses on our site that did answer the questions.
Well, anyway, I am telling you this because one of the items was a bit of an odd thing dealing with the Chinese Characters for the Name, Mormon. It still turns their ears red when this silly little issue of the Chinese characters for the name, Mormon pops up. The Mormons claim that I said that it meant that. I said and repeat now that I only reported what they said it represented. Silly stuff.
The Chinese Characters for “MORMON
The Chinese Characters for Mormon is the same as is for "the Gates of Hell." That story is old enough to vote. My first encounter with it was in a Newspaper article.
While interviewing the Mission President of Hong Kong Mission and or a Missionary or two, one of them stated with a chuckle that it was sometimes hard to share about the church because the name MOR MON in Chinese characters meant Gate of Hell.
I shared that story/article in a newsletter. A year or so later my wife and I were in Hong Kong and went to a small store that took American names or statements like "The Smith Family lives here" or " Our Love is forever" and wrote down the name MORMON in block letters.
I handed it to the elderly man there and asked him to make the Chinese character[s] for that name. He looked at it and went back into the shop and had an energetic conversation with several of the people there and came back and told me he did not think I should have it done because the two characters also meant gates and hell.
I asked him to do it anyway and not to put down any title or name on it. He did so and we left. I then took the paper with the characters on it and asked the desk clerk at the hotel and several other Chinese people to interpret it for me. Got the same answer..
That's what I reported and it doesn’t matter who says otherwise. I know what I know. And that's the truth you can take to the bank. But the stuff still floats out there years later...
LDS members conflicted on church's illegal-migrant growth
USA Today April 3, 2009
Reporting on article
By Daniel González, The Arizona Republic
70% LDS Latino Growth Illegal Aliens
The Mormon Church is one of the fastest-growing denominations in the country, and much of that growth is coming from an unlikely source: Latino immigrants.
Latinos overwhelmingly are raised Catholic, but the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is aggressively reaching out to them by touting the religion's heavy focus on family and community, pillars of the Mormon faith that are also at the center of Hispanic culture.
As a result, Latinos are joining the Mormon Church at a greater rate than members of any ethnic group, even Anglos, church leaders say.
But the outreach has created some unusual conflicts because the majority of the Latino converts are undocumented immigrants, which goes against a major tenet of the Mormon Church: obeying the law.
Brigham Young University history Professor Ignacio Garcia….. estimates that nationwide, 70% of all Latino converts in the past 10 to 15 years are undocumented immigrants.
Excerpted from: http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2009-04-03-mormon-immigrants_N.htm?csp=usat.me
Meanwhile, on FOX TV and Elsewhere In The World
It’s The Glenn Beck Show.
What I am still trying to figure out is what kind of Mormon Glenn Beck really is. He talks like he is a dyed in the wool Mormon. He has all the buzz words down. In a recent article in NEWSMAX, he gave the proper LDS picture of the coming seven years of tribulation [stock up, folks] and the thousand year reign of Christ.
I did notice that he failed to mention that the LDS Jesus would reign over the LDS priesthood here in America.
But here is a recently obscure talk jock from a small market who suddenly has a grip on the prime News network, [Yes Fox is number one] in one of the prime time slots with a repeat late night time slot… How do things like that happen? Even guys like Rush Limbaugh and Bill O’Riley spent years paying their dues.
The thing I can’t get a grip on is wondering if he is some kind of new deal Mormon, some sort of new face of Mormonism to get people to think that Mormons are hip, cool, in-your-face guys who actually think.
The things that often come out of his mouth would have me quickly disfellowshipped when I was a Mormon, but these rough-edged gentile words flow like candy drops out of his mouth and everyone claps Brother Glenn on the back each Sunday as he drops his tithing check off for the bishop.
I have a hard time seeing Brother Beck in the Temple with his sacred underwear and fig leaf apron, moving his sash from shoulder to shoulder and playing with his baker’s hat, sticking his arms through holes in a sheet, chanting “health in the navel, marrow in the bone” and giving his secret handshakes. Tell us it isn’t so, Brother Beck. Please.
It leaves me dazed. Please, anyone with any insight [I have none] as to what the real story is, let me in on the secret. I know the special handshake.
Saints Alive Ministries P.O. Box 1347 Issaquah WA 98027