My Hike Today

Today was a glorious winter’s day here in Cape Town and I had the chance to go on a hike up in the mountains. The place is called ‘Elephant’s Eye’, part of the Constantiaberg range in Tokai.  

It’s been raining for most of the week (and it’ll probably start up again tomorrow) so I was really blessed to be able to get out and enjoy the marvels of God’s magnificent creation!

I took some photos. They’re done on my Blackberry but didn’t come out that bad.


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My legs won’t be working so great tomorrow… I don’t think 😉


John Piper’s Disgusting Tweet: ‘5 Year Olds Who Find Sex Boring’

And to think I used to read Piper (way back in my Bible College days that is) :

As Dr West (HT) observes:

Surely he could have chosen a better analogy, right?  Or does he just know a lot of 5 year olds having sex?

The problem is comparing interest in God with 5 year olds and sex. That’s the problem.

Absolutely reprehensible!

Bible Archaeology

Jerusalem’s Old Turkish Prison Opens


Jerusalem (AP) — An old Turkish prison in Jerusalem is briefly opening to the public this weekend, allowing visitors a rare glimpse inside an infamous local landmark. 

The Kishle prison in Jerusalem’s Old City was built by the Ottoman Turks in the mid-1800s. It later served the British as a jail, housing Jewish and Arab prisoners in the stormy years leading up to Israel’s creation in 1948.

One of those prisoners, Samuel Matza, who was a member of a Jewish underground group as a young man, recalled sleeping on rags on the jail’s floor after British police arrested him on weapons charges 64 years ago.

Matza, now 84, said Friday he hoped to visit the building again…

Israeli archaeologists dug underneath the Kishle a decade ago and found important remains dating back nearly three millennia, including walls built by King Herod and medieval facilities for dyeing fabric.

“On this tiny spot we have the whole story of Jerusalem, from the Judean kings to the British mandate,” said Amit Re’em, the Israel Antiquities Authority archaeologist who excavated the Kishle.

The prison sits next to the Tower of David, an ancient fortress on the western flank of Jerusalem’s Old City. The tower complex, used as a stronghold and palace by Herod, early Muslim rulers, Crusaders and the Jordanian army, among others, is now a museum dedicated to Jerusalem’s history…

More here.


Fr John Corapi Files Lawsuit Against Accuser

The Sacramento Bee has the latest:

A former Sacramento priest and nationally known speaker has filed a lawsuit against the woman who accused him of sexual misconduct.

The Rev. John Corapi, who served as the director of Catholic Faith Formation in Sacramento in the 1990s, filed a lawsuit in the 11th Judicial District Court of Montana, where he now lives. He alleges that his accuser committed libel and that a letter she wrote to his religious superiors contained “numerous false, malicious and unprivileged statements” about the priest. He is suing for punitive and unspecified compensatory damages.

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests on Wednesday publicized Corapi’s lawsuit, which was filed in April.

“I think it is reprehensible that he would sue her,” said David Clohessy, national director of the victims rights group. “Clearly, he is trying to intimidate her.” He said a priest suing his accuser is unusual.

Corapi could not be reached for comment.

Corapi is a popular and well-known Catholic speaker who appeared regularly on TV, where he celebrated Mass and delivered powerful homilies.

He was placed on administrative leave from the Corpus Christi Diocese in Texas after the accusations in March. The allegations did not involve minors, according to officials in the Corpus Christ Diocese. On June 17, Corapi resigned from public ministry.

In the lawsuit, Corapi said the success of his ministry depends on his reputation and his position of a priest in good standing.

Corapi was a well-liked priest who drew standing-room only crowds when he spoke…


The Sacred Heart of Jesus

Today is the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus:

The Sacred Heart (also known as Sacred Heart of Jesus) is one of the most famous religious devotions to Jesus’ physical heart as the representation of His divine love for Humanity.

This devotion is predominantly used in the Catholic Church and among some high-church Anglicans. The devotion especially emphasizes the unmitigated love, compassion, and long-suffering of the heart of Christ towards humanity. The origin of this devotion in its modern form is derived from a French Roman Catholic nun, Marguerite Marie Alacoque, who said she learned the devotion from Jesus during a mystical experience. Predecessors to the modern devotion arose unmistakably in the Middle Ages in various facets of Catholic mysticism…

The Sacred Heart is often depicted in Christian art as a flaming heart shining with divine light, pierced by the lance-wound, surrounded by the crown of thorns, surmounted by a cross and bleeding. Sometimes the image shown shining within the bosom of Christ with his wounded hands pointing at the heart. The wounds and crown of thorns allude to the manner of Jesus’ death, while the fire represents the transformative power of divine love.

The Feast of the Sacred Heart has been a Solemnity in the Roman Catholic liturgical calendar since 1856, and is celebrated 19 days after Pentecost. As Pentecost is always celebrated on Sunday, the Feast of the Sacred Heart always falls on a Friday.

More here.

And here is an appropriate Act of Reparation for today:

Most sweet Jesus, whose overflowing charity for men is requited by so much forgetfulness, negligence and contempt, behold us prostrate before Thee, eager to repair by a special act of homage the cruel indifference and injuries to which Thy loving Heart is everywhere subject.

Mindful, alas! that we ourselves have had a share in such great indignities, which we now deplore from the depths of our hearts, we humbly ask Thy pardon and declare our readiness to atone by voluntary expiation, not only for our own personal offenses, but also for the sins of those, who, straying far from the path of salvation, refuse in their obstinate infidelity to follow Thee, their Shepherd and Leader, or, renouncing the promises of their baptism, have cast off the sweet yoke of Thy law.

We are now resolved to expiate each and every deplorable outrage committed against Thee; we are now determined to make amends for the manifold offenses against Christian modesty in unbecoming dress and behavior, for all the foul seductions laid to ensnare the feet of the innocent, for the frequent violations of Sundays and holydays, and the shocking blasphemies uttered against Thee and Thy Saints. We wish also to make amends for the insults to which Thy Vicar on earth and Thy priests are subjected, for the profanation, by conscious neglect or terrible acts of sacrilege, of the very crimes of nations who resist the rights and teaching authority of the Church which Thou hast founded.

Would that we were able to wash away such abominations with our blood. We now offer, in reparation for these violations of Thy divine honor, the satisfaction Thou once made to Thy Eternal Father on the cross and which Thou continuest to renew daily on our altars; we offer it in union with the acts of atonement of Thy Virgin Mother and all the Saints and of the pious faithful on earth; and we sincerely promise to make recompense, as far as we can with the help of Thy grace, for all neglect of Thy great love and for the sins we and others have committed in the past. Henceforth, we will live a life of unswerving faith, of purity of conduct, of perfect observance of the precepts of the Gospel and especially that of charity. We promise to the best of our power to prevent others from offending Thee and to bring as many as possible to follow Thee.

O loving Jesus, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mother, our model in reparation, deign to receive the voluntary offering we make of this act of expiation; and by the crowning gift of perseverance keep us faithful unto death in our duty and the allegiance we owe to Thee, so that we may all one day come to that happy home, where with the Father and the Holy Spirit Thou livest and reignest, God, forever and ever.


Bible Archaeology

A Cable Car Coming to Jerusalem?

The proposal is to run an aerial tram to Jerusalem’s Old City:

Forget the thousands of dilapidated buses belching plumes of diesel, squeezing through the narrow streets, and imagine arriving at the Old City of Jerusalem flying meters above archeological ruins in a glass cable car.

A special Knesset session of the Jerusalem Lobby on Wednesday was dedicated to exploring the feasibility of a cable car leading to the Old City, which supporters claim will improve accessibility for tourists with disabilities and reduce traffic.

“I remember the cable car on Mount Zion during the War of Independence,” Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said at the opening of the session. “There are things that seem impossible – like a cable car passing over us – because they require more effort on behalf of future generations.”

Rivlin added that the traffic from the 150,000 tourists per month in the Old City creates “unbearable crowding” that also stops Jerusalemites from moving freely around their city. Rivlin proposed an economic feasibility study to examine the cost of such an initiative in greater detail.

According to a plan from the Transportation Ministry, a cable car could carry up to 4,000 passengers an hour, eliminating the need for some of the 3,000 buses that drive in and around the Old City each month. The plan also stipulated that the cable car would be environmentally friendly and would not harm the view or surroundings of the historic area.

The plan also claims that the cable car would itself become a tourist attraction, and that the price paid by tourists would reduce the high cost of building it.

The Old City in Jerusalem is the center of tourism and the most visited place in Israel, but the problems of access to the city keep tourists from enjoying its wonders, and even negatively impact the success of business owners,” said MK Yulia Shamolov Berkovich (Kadima), head of the Jerusalem Lobby in the Knesset.

“There is no doubt that a cable car would be an easy solution that would increase the number of visitors and be an enjoyable tourist attraction for the entire family, even attracting Jerusalemites,” she said.

The cable car would stretch across the Kidron Valley, from the building that houses the Government Printing Office on Rehov Miriam Hashmonaite, to the Dung Gate. The 1,030-meter-long ride would take approximately 3 minutes, 30 seconds…