Historic Bell Stolen from St Mary’s Cathedral in San Francisco

The Christian Post reports:

This past Sunday parishioners at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption in San Francisco discovered a big part of their church history was missing when they left 11 a.m. mass.

 A 5,300-pound church bell, mounted on a concrete slab in the garden area, had disappeared and no one could remember when it was last seen.

“We cannot replace this historic and valuable item,” said George Wesolek, director of Communications and Public Policy for the Archdiocese of San Francisco, in a recent release. “Hopefully, the police will recover it, and we can put it back in its rightful place as a memory of the Catholic Church of San Francisco.”

The theft is still under investigation, and Police Inspector Brian Danker told The Christian Post Tuesday the incident isn’t something to be taken lightly. He said people are “stealing brass railings, copper gutters, chalices from churches, bells, whatever they can chop up and take to recycling yards that take brass and copper.” Not just gold and silver, but also industrial metals, have skyrocketed in price over the past few years.

He called thieves like this “metal monsters.” They typically target homes under construction with copper wirings. If they can get away with it, the price is good. The estimated replacement value for the bell is $75,000…

More here.



Richard Dawkins Claims Jesus Would Have Been an Atheist

Says the man who is too afraid to debate Christian apologists:

In this interview with John Harris, of the Guardian, Dawkins rejects the assertion that he intentionally provokes religious believers. (“I’m not even sure I’ve used the word pernicious,” he objects, gently. “… although I actually think it is pernicious.”)

He also clarifies that, if there’s a religious-belief scale running from one to seven, with one signifying total belief and seven total atheism, he’s a six, not a seven. Then he clarifies that he would rate his belief in “fairies” and “werewolves” on the same level.

If he wins any points for diplomacy, which is an open question, he loses them with the quote that the Guardian is highlighting to promote the interview: “Somebody as intelligent as Jesus would have been an atheist.”



Catholic Radio Station Torched in Philippines

Manila – A Roman Catholic Church-run radio station was set on fire in the central Philippines on Wednesday in the latest attack on the press in the country, police said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the destruction of the DZVT radio station on Mindoro island, and there was no evidence communist rebels in the area were involved, regional police chief Superintendent Gregorio Olaguer said.

“No one saw the suspects and reports linking armed communist rebel groups were negative,” he told reporters.

The unknown suspects doused the premises with petrol and set it alight before dawn, Olaguer said.

The station was not known to report on controversial issues that could have earned it enemies, but the authorities were looking into a previous unsuccessful attempt to set fire to the building, he added.

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines in Manila declined to comment when reached by AFP.

The Philippines is one of the world’s most dangerous places for journalists due to a “culture of impunity” where firearms are common and powerful figures believe they are above the law.

Attacks against the press are common, and in the most infamous incident, 32 journalists were among 57 murdered in the southern Philippines in 2009 allegedly by a powerful clan.

Communist guerrillas are known to attack establishments that refuse to submit to extortion.

Source:  Asia One



Every Day I Need You Lord

A prayer to start the day:

Every day I need you Lord
But this day especially,
I need some extra strength
To face whatever is to be.
This day more than any day
I need to feel you near,
To fortify my courage
And to overcome my fear.
By myself, I cannot meet
The challenge of the hour,
There are times when humans help,
But we need a higher power
To assist us bear what must be borne,
and so dear Lord, I pray,
Hold on to my trembling hand
And be near me today.