City Business Church

It is not by grace that one enters the kingdom of heaven, but by tithing. - Damazio 3:16

Name:
Location: Washington DC, United States

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Looting

Apparently, looting in the city of New Orleans is getting out of hand. Thieves are taking everything from TV's to jewelry. As such, I've been cruising neworleans.craigslist.org looking for some good deals.

Chaos

I was going to write a post about the New Orleans TV coverage and jokingly ask, "Do any white people live in New Orleans?" And then I read this link: Email attributed to NOLA rescue worker; economics of disaster My friend Ned Sublette passes along an email attributed to a rescue worker in New Orleans. Ned says: The poorest 20% (you can argue with the number -- 10%? 18%? no one knows) of the city was left behind to drown. This was the plan. Forget the sanctimonious bullshit about the bullheaded people who wouldn't leave. The evacuation plan was strictly laissez-faire. It depended on privately owned vehicles, and on having ready cash to fund an evacuation. The planners knew full well that the poor, who in new orleans are overwhelmingly black, wouldn't be able to get out. The resources -- meaning, the political will -- weren't there to get them out. White per capita income in Orleans parish, 2000 census: $31,971. Black per capita: $11,332. Median *household* income in B.W. Cooper (Calliope) Housing Projects, 2000: $13,263.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Katrina

Is anyone else as fascinated by this storm as me? I have been trying to do work all day, but instead keep refreshing www.wwltv.com instead. Katrina hits the region knocking out all power, destroys a couple of levee's and now the city is slowly filling up with water. It looks like the worst case scenario is actually coming true.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Under the Banner

I recently read the book Under the Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakeur. The book is a stirring criticique of Fundamental Mormonism, Mormonism and religion in general. Part of the book focuses on Colorado City, Colorado where polygamy is common practice. In this city of several thousand, girls as young as twelve are forced to marry men four times their age, Incest and pedophia are rampant. Sadly, all these acts are committed in the name of God. If a girl resists, the leaders tell them its what God wants. (Before Christians get too sanctimonious, remember that our founding father, Abraham, almost killed his son, because he believed its what God wanted.) For me the most compelling quote in the book came from an excommunicated member of the fundamentalist church in Colorado, named DeLoy. This father of 16 left the church after he realized the leadership was lying. Deloy still lives in Colorado City, but the church leadership is trying to evict him. His life is conflicted, for he continues to love the church, he just no longer believes. Here is his final quote: "If you want to know the truth, I think people within the religion -people who live here in Colorado City- are probably happier, on the whole, than people on the outside.... ....but somethings in life are more important than being happy. Like being free to think for yourself."

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Home School Hero, This is for you

My brother Joel recently showed me this list that he had written. He says "You might be homeschooled if:" but I say it sounds more like "You might be a Morton if:" YOU MIGHT BE HOMESCHOOLED IF: 1. You are over twenty and still dont know your address 2. You have a toy, name it, then make it your imaginary friend. 4. You laugh at sentences containing the word: "Poop" 5. You send in your "good" ideas to ZOOM. 8. You memorize and sing theme songs to afternoon cartoon shows. 9. You have 3 or less friends. 10. You have your mom arrange play-dates for you. 13. You have theatrical plays with your siblings. 16. You thought the word shut-up was going to send you to hell 17. You tried to kill the air with your wiffle bat 18. Your family ever owned a station wagon (wood panelling of course) 20. You don’t ever wear shoes!!! 21. You were ever slightly attracted to your mother. (makes sense shes the only women you ever seen) 22. You breast fead until you were four. 23. You if your seat belt has ever been a bunji cable 24. You ever thought that a night out on the town was you and your mom going to blockbuster 25. You dont know how to spell 26. You are over 15 and still sing the bunny loop song to tie your shoes 28. You ever picketed outside abortion clinics 30. You have ever had a 5 gallon paint bucket for a car seat. 34. You ever thought Jantzen beach was a place to swim 35. You have ever taken fencing lessons 36. You are misteriously obsessed with buried treasure 38. You ever had to memorize a scripture just to eat dinner.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Just Out

I work for a flooring/countertop store called Surface and recently we decided that the homosexual male was by far the best kind of customer we could have. The typical gay guy has both money and style; 2 key ingredients in a good customer. Because of this we started thinking about advertising in Just Out magazine which is a local gay paper. Some of the people here felt a little conflicted about advertising there because they don’t approve of the lifestyle, but still have no problem working with gay customers. The question was “Does this ad support gays and if so is it wrong?” I skipped right over that question and jumped to a better one “What could our tag line be in the ad?” These are the blog-appropriate ones that I came up with: (F.Y.I. - Our current slogan is THE LAYER BETWEEN HOUSE AND HOME. I think theres a good chance that might get changed) AD Ideas for Just Out Magazine: We help solve husband-husband quarrels. At Surface there’s no He said He said Bullsh*t Surface: The layer between house and Oh my God! We dream about designing Brad Pitt’s house too. Surface: When you’re ready to decorate more than the closet Surface: Our first showroom was a closet. Surface: Sassy, Sexy, and SUPER All gaydar points to Surface (not that there’s anything wrong with that) Surface (Pronounced THURFATHE) Will and Jack have nothing on David and Johnpaul

Friday, August 12, 2005

Interview

Recently, Pam Hogeweide from http://www.pamhogeweide.blogspot.com/ was asked to write an article about disillusioned Christians for an online publication called Off the Map (http://www.off-the-map.org/). For some reason she seems to think that I would fall into the “disillusioned Christian” category. - I’m not sure why she would think that; I know I’m disillusioned but calling me a Christian was a little low. - Regardless, I agreed to answer a few questions for her. While writing my answers for the questions I found that they really caused me to think and since that is what we are all about here at City Business Church I thought I would post one of the questions for you to consider. What is your perspective on gays and church…just asking…can a homosexual come to Christ, be part of church, and continue to identify themselves as gay believing that God created them that way? What are your views on this and do you have any thoughts about how the church responds to homosexuality and same-sex marriage… Feel free to comment:

Investigative Reporting

So for those who don't know, I live in Washington DC. And currently in this fair city, there is a scandal brewing over remarks made by a local pastor. Reverand Willie Wilson, pastor of an 8,000 member church, recently made disparaging remarks about homosexuals in a sermon. And in typical homo fashion, the gays got fired up. (At this point, I don't care. Sexuality is a moral issue. As such, the church is free to speak out against it, and the gay community is free to stand up for themselves. I really don't care.) But then I read what Wilson said that got everyone so fired up. Here's his quote. My son in high school last year, trying to go to the prom, he said, ‘Dad, I ain’t got nobody to take to the prom because all the girls in my class are gay. And ain’t but two of them straight and both of them ugly.” —the Rev. Willie F. Wilson, July 3 I'm not sure why the gay people are so angry, really it should be the girls in Wilson's son's highschol class that should be upset. Neverthless, in the vein of Woodward and Bernstien, a local newspaper (DC's version of the Willamette Week) went to Wilson's son's school and interviewed all his classmates, specifically the girls in his class to determine whether the quote was true. Here is a LINK to the article. Producing this nice quote from the principal: Asked whether her school has a particularly high number of gay students, SWW Principal Sheila Mills-Harris can’t say: “I have no idea about their sexual orientation, nor am I concerned about it.” It’s enough of a challenge, she says, “trying to keep a roof over my children’s head that doesn’t allow the rain to come in [and] trying to make connections with universities so I can offer students opportunities.” However, for me, the best part was that some reporter went into a local highschool to check up on gossip. I want that job. That's the greatest job in the world. I would be perfect at it. Interviewing all the students to see whose gay. Finding out whether the girls in the Junior class are cute or ugly. These are things I am excellent at. I will be submitting my resume to the City Paper tomorrow. The other thing of course is that pastors often run fast and loose with the facts when sharing a sermon. And will often say anything to prove their point. Unfortunately, Mr. Wilson got caught. I love it.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Grow. There's More.

Well, I've been feeling pretty unmotivated lately. But I flipped to the sermons this evening to see who had spoken recently. And what do you know, Marc "Barista" Estes was speaking. This was gonna be a gold mine I knew it. So allow me to briefly recap the sermon. -He begins sermon by apologizing for bringing coffee into the sanctuary. Calls drinking coffee a habit. (No Marc, a habit, is when you read the Bible and Pray every morning. What you have is an addiction.) In the interest of full disclosure, I have a similar addiction. -He then proceeds to tell five or six of the stupidest coffee jokes I have ever heard. Here's one. "Most people wouldn't like my coffee, they would think it was oil. And I proceed to tell them its the Holy Oil of Yashua." (I can't believe I'm saying this, but someone get Frank back up on stage. This guy is bombing.) Of course, As I write this I realize that the one person who probably finds these jokes funny is my father. So maybe its a generational thing. -Marc has dropped the name Starbucks in his sermon 6 times, and it hasn't even been five minutes. I swear they're sponsoring him. Someone check this out. -He is know describing Frank's Starbucks drink and his daughters drink. Its a freaking commercial. He's advertising for Starbucks. Unbelievable! -Now Marc is telling us we need to grow more in Christ. Its a good message. But still kind of sad. He really is a far cry from the guy who came up from Lake Tahoe and ran Operation Portland back in 1995. I would love for 1995 Marc Estes to meet 2005 Marc Estes. -Your habits shape your character. (good point) -He is now describing specific church members and how they dance and clap during worship. He's trying to be funny, but no one is laughing. (It kills me, because Marc used to be edgy. But it appears he has been neutured. Neutured by a desire to be successful. Congratulations, Marc. You sold out.) In closing, let me say his sermon was nice. Nice and boring.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Verse of the week (or last 5 months)

Romans 10:1-4 Brethren, my heart's desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation. 2 For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge. 3 For not knowing about God's righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Damn Plank

Tonight I was telling my beautiful wife about the last comment on the blog (she’s not a regular reader) and I told her how I thought it was such a great quote: “I don't believe that any enemy of the church could have possibly done more damage to me and my family than City Bible has. And I think that pisses God off.” Once I got to the “that pisses God off” part, which I thought was the best, she looked at me and said “not any more than you do”. She’s right you know. Clearly I sin and make mistakes and I imagine that I piss God off (the one in heaven, not you Hank, I know you’re pissed); the beautiful thing is that I know he has grace for my mistakes and that he loves me anyway. That’s not an excuse but a wonderful realization that has helped me grow closer to God. If CBC is hurting people, should we not speak out against them? If we do are we doing God’s work or hurting it? I don’t know. It’s that damn plank; gets me every time.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Why? Here's why.

I am kind of burnt out writing this blog. Its such a narrow subject topic, that I have difficulty coming up with ideas to write about. One commenter mentioned that JP and I are "grasping at straws". And I tend to agree, we are grasping.... ...but so what... Anonymous said: I am a PBC graduate who has just come across this blog. God has answered my prayers!!! Kudos. I have written many a letter and then thrown them away for fear of acting in the "wrong spirit." I am glad that someone, (quite a few of you it seems) has addressed these issues. I look foward to reading more. I don't believe that any enemy of the church could have possibly done more damage to me and my family than City Bible has. And I think that pisses God off.

Monday, August 01, 2005

FOR GOD SO LOVED THE OREGON FAMILY COUNSEL…

Is anyone here bothered by organized Christianity? Does it seem like were off track a little bit? Has anyone else noticed that we tend to see spiritual health as avoiding only certain sins? And even then they are only sins if they are done in public. I am specifically bothered by the way churches seem to rate your level of Christianity by how well you can resist the following sins: Sex, Drugs, Alcohol, Smoking, and Rock & Roll music. It doesn’t seem to matter if you are a crooked businessman, dishonest teen, gossiping mother, or self-absorbed pastor. As long as you avoid those 5 sins (in public) you are safe. It also bothers me that you get bonus “Christ Points” for being a white, homophobic, republican. I’m still looking for the scripture that says “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosever is born white, straight and conservative should not perish but have everlasting life”

The Whole Story

I'm editing this post, because it is too long. - Catalyst Dear JP: In response to your request for a reminder on said“ass kicking,” please post the following on the blog to bring everyone up to speed with what you have (understandably) tried so hard to forget. ...yadda, yadda, yadda... I do believe Reformed Pope got his ass kicked that day. And there you have it, the whole unforgettable nineyards. I’ve never mentioned anything about it until now, and now everyone will know the real story behind my forehead scar. But you asked for it. Regards, Cattle List I am reposting this story to keep a promise. If you want to read the full story please click here http://www.citybiblewatchespanol.blogspot.com/ - REFORMED POPE