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Messages - RogerMartim

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Your Turn / Re: Lutheran Architecture
« on: January 16, 2022, 08:32:24 PM »
This doesn't have much to do with architecture although I can add an observation in this discussion.
The church that I grew up in is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful in my hometown. It does have a few liturgical quirks which I've never seen elsewhere. In the center of the altar is a missal stand that is always, and I repeat, always empty. I've never seen a book on it. When there is communion, the patens, chalices, etc. are always on the side of the altar. The pastor goes to the side of the altar to say the Verba and makes the sign of the cross over the elements. Has anyone ever seen this before?
Again, I say that it is one of the most beautiful churches I've ever seen, if I may say so, but its architectural integrity was most severely compromised when the church decided that they needed a larger narthex—why, I don't know. An architectural firm which I think did not care one hoot about anything but lining its pockets with money drew up plans for a new narthex which made the church completely asymetrical and it now looks like a Las Vegas showroom with sofas and easy chairs, etc. The new narthex was built along the entire side of the church building completely burying over the beautiful stain glass windows. Later special lighting had to be installed so people could see the windows from the inside. On the narthex side the windows were boarded up as it was completely useless. The showroom's decor is all pastel in color. I was not around when all this was happening but I do remember that my parents were vehemently against this atrocity. I have a dim view of church architects as the church that I was a member of back in the East contracted a firm to draw up plans. Fortunately, it never got past the committee as the plans were so utterly atrocious. Caveat emptor big time around something like this. 

Your Turn / Re: ELCA Transgender Bishop in the News
« on: December 28, 2021, 08:20:42 PM »
Good heavens, Pastor Morris, you are so off base that I don't even know where to begin.

Many LGBTQ kids are so bullied that some go on to end their lives. Society's disdain of LGBTQ people can be so profound that they carry scars that never go away. I was bullied by both students and teachers, yes, teachers, but by God's grace I was able to overcome this abuse and go on to live a moderately productive and happy life. Once I understood my own homosexuality I never hid it.

I simply do not know where you get this "peer" pressure to be something that a person is not. Locker rooms are the same now as they were 50 and 60 years ago when I was coming up. They are not fun places for a Gay person to hang out with so much toxic masculinity to prove that one is not a fag. Statistically it is considered that maybe one out of ten (and that might be on the high end) are in the LGBTQ spectrum. So how does this work with nine out of 10 people all in some kind of a cabal to recruit kids to the "other" side?

There is much more awareness nowadays of gender dysphoria whereas in my time coming up, it was completely unknown except in a couple of those individuals who were probably seen as not much better than circus freaks. So, today there may be much more expressions from certain individuals because there is a name for it and that with physical and extensive psychological counseling, it is seen by many as a correction. Again, there is no recruitment or peer pressure or concerted effort that some think is more prevalent nowadays. Just count the number of dead of those who have chosen to end their lives.

Your Turn / Re: ELCA Transgender Bishop in the News
« on: December 27, 2021, 08:37:08 PM »
I, as a 73-year old Gay "pervert" (according to some of you), have never in my entire life seen or sensed any kind of "recruitment" either in my wide circle of Gay friends or in the Trans community. You cannot recruit a person to switch to the "other side." There is no campaign of any sort. You simply cannot make a person do something they don't want to do; or be something that they don't want to be. Where do some of you come up with this crap? There are a few indiscriminate Gay people who may act upon another person against their will, but that is criminal activity just as it would be in any straight circumstance.

Your Turn / Re: ELCA Transgender Bishop in the News
« on: December 25, 2021, 08:19:13 PM »
This would not be a problem in German with its Sie, sie, sie (you, they, she/it).

Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: December 16, 2021, 09:02:57 AM »
Maybe I don't understand the concept of natural immunity very well, but I am assuming that if everyone were to contract COVID19 and some get well, doesn't that still leave millions upon millions (just in the US we are approaching a million) dead in its wake? No thanks. I will keep up with the recommended vaccines and boosters if need be and will continue to wear my mask in public and hope and wish that my neighbor will do the same.
Incidentally, some people love to play with numbers. "Oh, it's only .0010% of the population" or some such. But numbers or statistics don't go over very well with someone who has lost a family member or dear friend to COVID19. Doesn't it deflect from the seriousness of this deadly virus?

Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: December 15, 2021, 04:59:43 PM »
This could have even been written today:
“It is even more shameful for a person to pay no heed to his own body and to fail to protect it against the plague the best he is able, and then to infect and poison others who might have remained alive if he had taken care of his body as he should have. He is thus responsible before God for his neighbor’s death and is a murderer many times over.”
(Martin Luther, Luther’s Works, Vol. 43: Devotional Writings II, “Whether One Should Flee from a Deadly Plague”)

Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: December 11, 2021, 08:11:38 PM »
So, if I am understanding some of you, Omicron is here and everything is hunky-dory. It's no big deal—a minor inconvenience like a head cold.
And when the next variant comes around?...
I am going to continue to wear my mask in public places even though I have been vaccinated twice with the third as a booster. COVID19 is not something to now pretend that it is anything but deadly with the number of American dead approaching a million.

Your Turn / Re: Fear Is Deadlier Than Viruses
« on: November 25, 2021, 03:25:00 PM »
Pastor Speckhard, almost 195,000,000 people in the US have been fully vaccinated and you mention someone you know whose father died from the vaccine. This is an anomaly statistically speaking if this is what happened. It sounds almost like Nikki Minaj pontifically stating on TikTok that her cousin in Trinidad had a friend who was vaccinated and came away impotent with swollen testicles—none of which has been verified. I still say that love of neighbor supercedes any personal viewpoints that the vaccine down the road is going to turn someone into something whatever the imagination floats. It isn't love when someone says that they are going to take their chances.

Your Turn / Re: Fear Is Deadlier Than Viruses
« on: November 25, 2021, 11:40:29 AM »
Pastor Boehler, I am not sure why you want to deflect from the seriousness of COVID-19. It is not to be pooh-paahed. Even if one survives COVID-19, the long-term effects of it is still unknown. Many diseases can be a "side" effect of another which causes death. AIDS is one example. No one dies from AIDS. It is opportunistic diseases that take over a weakened immune system that is caused by AIDS. My best friend died of pneumonia but on his death certificate it lists AIDS as the cause of death. Obituaries list AIDS as the reason for death. My newspaper has listed many with obituaries where COVID-19 is the cause of death. So COVID-19 is a dangerous disease and we must take every precaution to minimize what it may do to us and others.
On this subject, I find it difficult to understand why so many are nonchalant about the mandate and vaccine choice. The Gospels are replete with admonitions of love of neighbor. It is obvious that there is a phase of a person being asymptomatic in which the virus can be passed on to others. In group settings such as many today at Thanksgiving dinners, this deadly virus will be passed on to many and I would not be surprised if there will be another huge spike in deaths of those who will not be around next Thanksgiving.
Fear doesn't kill. COVID-19 can and does.

Your Turn / Re: Christian response to Rittenhouse trial
« on: November 20, 2021, 08:51:54 AM »
Now there are several GOP legislators tripping over themselves to hire Kyle Rittenhouse to work for them. What kind of a message does that send to the general populace—no matter whether one thinks he was an angel or an imp. Again, he was a little boy playing with fire and there is nothing there that should be upheld in any way.
I will say it again about the judge—with his insensitivity on all fronts—how stupid was he to have his phone on when it rang playing the song at Trump's rallies—his insistence that the zoom feature alters the picture—and it is just rich that Kyle Rittenhouse was standing behind the judge with both looking as if everything was just hunky dory—his true colors showed that he was not very smart in referencing his take-out food on the slow side coming from Asia—and last but not least his referring to those killed by Kyle Rittenhouse as naughty boys that almost left the impression that they had it coming to them. There were very few legal scholars who commented positively about this judge's handling of this trial.

Your Turn / Re: Christian response to Rittenhouse trial
« on: November 19, 2021, 08:32:05 PM »
And no one is having second thoughts about a 17-year old boy playing "Cowboys and Indians" that he should have stopped playing when he was 12? And the way the judge comported himself throughout, it's one for the books.

Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: November 10, 2021, 03:20:25 PM »
I find it so interesting that tables can be turned so easily.
I am 73 years old which means that I can almost remember the day when I picked up The Washington Post at my door and read the article about a “gay cancer” that was becoming worrisome in San Francisco and New York. In time it evolved into what we now know as HIV infection or AIDS which has killed a disproportionate number of Gay men in the US. (In many parts of the world, especially in Africa, it is not a Gay disease.) In time we learned the virus’s vector was not easy but mostly due to ignorance or carelessness. Yet the syndrome was treated as the most the most loathsome and dangerous adversary of ordinary life. Medical personnel by untold numbers refused to treat those who were suffering from AIDS; funeral homes were refusing to bury those whose death certificates were filled in with the word AIDS on them; William Buckley that “sage” of yesteryear resorted to an Archie Bunkerism that all homosexuals be tattooed in the butt to safeguard society; the list goes on. Ronald Reagan didn’t mention AIDS throughout all his presidency except at almost the end of his second term. It was just too icky. Watch the movie, The Normal Heart which details how society treated the new lepers. Yet through all this, the transmission of HIV remained stubbornly difficult by casual contact. In nearly 40 years, 675,000 Americans have died of AIDS. Although there is no vaccine yet but thanks to medical intervention of various means, it is now a manageable disease.
It is not so with COVID-19. It is easily transmissible and in almost two years’ time, almost 760,000 have died in the US. Highly effective vaccines were rolled out in record time according people a safety net that is unparalleled, but the Aaron Rodgers and the Joe Rogans; the Tucker Carlsons and the Sean Hannitys and the Laura Ingrahams (the latter all vaccinated per their company’s dictum) scream incessantly about mandates designed to save lives with the “me, me, me” as the final arbiter and nothing of anything about personal responsibility in infecting others. Dominating the airwaves of vulnerable people they falsely accuse the CDC and the FDA of being nothing but a bag of tricks. For some strange reason Ivermectin which is not an anti-viral makes much more sense to them. Go figure. Most Gay people in time took personal responsibility using the best deterrents that were at their disposal. It isn’t about “my body.”
Do the math: 675,000 over a span of 40 + years; 760,000 in less than two years. Transmission of one or the other: COVID-19 wins hands down.

Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: November 08, 2021, 08:44:31 PM »
A lot of people checked in with Joe Rogan for medical advice and I think it included Aaron Rodgers.

So, Pastor Speckhard, do you think that Joe Rogan and Anthony Fauci are on equal footing in things medical?

I know whose advice I'd follow.

Your Turn / Re: Colin Powell +
« on: November 08, 2021, 11:05:11 AM »
This isn't to detract from the life and witness of Colin Powell but there is an interesting connection. The day after his funeral at the National Cathedral, there was a memorial service for Arne Sorenson who died earlier this year at 62 from pancreatic cancer. He was the CEO of Marriott Corporation, the first non-Mormon to hold that position. Arne was a lifelong Lutheran and his father, Morris "Bo" Sorenson was active in the formation of the ELCA and was executive assistant to the ELCA's presiding bishop.
The preacher at Arne's Memorial Service married Colin Powell's son, Michael who married a Lutheran. He also baptized all of Arne's four children and I served as assistant minister (lay) at a couple of them. Arne and his wife Ruth were very active at Augustana, an inner-city Lutheran parish in DC.
The service was live-streamed on You Tube but I am not sure how to find it. The cathedral was completely packed with those attending Arne's funeral and the eulogies were kept to a minimum and only at the beginning of the service.

Almost all of my friends, both life-long and recently acquired, have left the church. Rightly or wrongly their distaste for it is fed by the Franklin Grahams, Jerry Falwells, the Crouches, the Bakkers, the Copelands (with Kenneth's multi-million dollar plane), the Osteens, ad nauseam, preaching their prescriptions on how you may live. Many of the aforementioned loudly proclaim which side of the fence you must be politically or you are not on God's side. I have one foot in the door and the other out. As a Gay man, there is no place for me in the congregation that I attend (LCMS) which is only to take my mother who is 98 and still wants to go when she is able. It is virulently anti-Gay which makes me very sad if not disgusted.

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