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True believers

Billy Graham defines cults. If this is the working definition, it seems to apply also to, well, Baptists and Catholics and Muslims and . . .

One characteristic of cults is that they strongly believe they alone are right in their beliefs and everyone else is wrong.

Liberals and conservatives, too, come to think of it. Not libertarians, though. We do not believe we alone are right. We know it.

Without a prayer

Apparently, "separation of church and state" does not reach to presidential appearances. Ryan Culp of Elkhart agreed to open President Obama's town halll meeting with a prayer, even though he's a conservative Republican. He even agreed to have the prayer "vetted" by White House officials to make sure there was nothing in it that would offend anyone. This seems to be standard for Obama -- both the prayers and the vetting:

Strings attached, or not

Government to top business executives: Want some bailout money? Got some rules.

The Obama administration's announcement yesterday that it would toughen executive compensation restrictions at some firms receiving federal aid signaled a broader strategy to remake how Wall Street's top financiers are paid, officials said.

Michael Dubruiel, RIP

Keep Amy Welborn, former Fort Wayne resident, and well-known blogger on Catholic issues, in your thoughts and prayers today. Her husband, Michael Dubruiel, collapsed and died yesterday morning. He was only 50.

Posted in: Our town, Religion

Right idea, wrong place

A Marion man takes the idea that religion can make you better off in entirely the wrong direction:

A former church official has been charged with stealing more than $276,000 from church accounts and using some of the money to pay for a vasectomy, motorcycles and cars.

Killer alert

Oh, no, we're all going to die horribly!

A blue-ribbon panel of scientists is trying to determine the best way to detect and ward off any wandering space rocks that might be on a collision course with Earth.

[. . .]

Congress asked the academy to conduct the study after astronomers were unable to eliminate an extremely slight chance that an asteroid called Apophis will slam into Earth with devastating effect in 2036.

Posted in: Religion, Science

A win, by God

At least the BMV is smart enough to know when to back down:

The state Bureau of Motor Vehicles has ditched a new rule that prohibited the mention of God on personalized license plates.

The rule, which took effect Nov. 6, had drawn protests from people who for years had bought license plates with sayings that included

The real deal

From Wikipedia:

The saying "Do not drink the Kool-Aid" now commonly refers to the Jonestown tragedy, meaning "Do not trust any group you find to be a little on the kooky side," or "Whatever they tell you, do not believe it too strongly." Fox News commentator Bill O'Reilly is known for using the term in this manner.

Having "drunk the Kool-Aid" also refers to being a strong or fervent believer in a particular philosophy or mission — wholeheartedly or blindly believing in its virtues.

Question of the day

The Maranatha Chapel Full Gospel caused a stir in Harlan this week with a question on the message board outside the church: Do you want a Muslim for your president? WANE TV did a story and sort of hinted at what the controversy might be -- you know, something to do with the McCain-Obama presidential race. The Journal Gazette was more explicit about what the fuss might be about:

In search of Jesus

At this late date, we're really going to find something that will shock us?

A new 6-session Bible Study that "is bound to change your perceptions of who Jesus is" begins Wednesday, Oct. 29 at St. Mark's United Methodist Church, 126th St. & Rangeline Road in Carmel.

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