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Wednesday, November 28 2012

Recently, I stumbled across a newspaper article written last year about a food pantry in Wilmington, NC whose shelves were all but empty.  I am sure that for many their situation has not gotten any better economically and truth be told, many more are increasingly depending on local food banks and pantries to meet some if not all their food needs.

This website has written on the need of feeding the hungry before and the message bears repeating again.  There is no reason that anyone should have to miss or skip meals in this town due to lack of…according to a 2010 US Census Bureau fact sheet, in Wilmington alone 23% of our children were living in poverty. These numbers have steadily increased over the last several years.  Naturally, if they are in poverty, their parent or parents are as well.

I called the Salvation Army and spoke with Major Richard Watts who gave me permission to quote him.  When I asked if empty shelves were an issue he said, “It is a constant problem.”  He further stated, “Families do not make enough to feed their families.” He emphasized that people coming there to be fed are “not taking advantage of the community and are not panhandlers.”   He said the Salvation Army gives away $2500 a week in groceries and shelter food and for some the food they get there will be the only sustenance they receive that day.  That’s a huge demand to meet each week. 

According to Ron at First Fruit Ministries, when government funding was cut, their funding was cut as well.  He said that at one time they were providing 10,000 pounds of canned food a month; now it’s only 4,000 pounds a month.  How many go without as a result in this drop and how many are children?  There are several food banks and pantries in this area and none of them should be in lack.   

Jesus Without The Junk works hard to be a living example of what it asks of others and the numbers on the website prove this point.   This ministry urges you to do your part for those in need and fill those shelves up! 

Katie Altobellis

Posted by: Molly Painter AT 08:06 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, November 20 2012

I know we are tired of hearing anything more about the election and only want to move ahead with the things we must regard in what lay before us now.  Due to the inappropriate comments that have been flayed at both Obama and Romney during and after the election, I feel motivated to make comment to remind us of a couple of things.

There are many examples where we have shown the world what we are made of: We’ve pulled together countless times in history for our common good with remarkable results.  There was a time we felt strongly in the right to govern ourselves and the ensuing result was the American Revolution.  During World War II, Americans stepped up to the plate in compromise by working longer hours and doing without many consumer goods in order to support the war effort.  When the terrible day of 9/11 struck, we did not allow terrorism to defeat and weaken us; just the opposite┬» we came together (once again) to protect the country we love.  Our lives were changed forever, but we grew stronger in a myriad of ways.  It is time to pull together in unison once more.

Again, the people have elected Mr. Obama as president.  Though he may have not been your choice, you must get past your pettiness and name-calling; some of the things I have heard are mortifying.  Although you may not agree with all he stands for or some of the decisions that he has handed down, I urge you to pray for wisdom for your president.  If you believe that prayer can affect people and situations, then I urge you to fill up the prayer bowls of Heaven. 

We can surmise all we want but no one knows what to expect in the days to come.  We have become terribly polarized politically and religiously.  We need to get our act together.  The people and our government need to quit pitting themselves against each other.  Let us try to find common ground; if we do not, we will pay one hefty price.

Katie Altobellis

 

 
Posted by: Molly Painter AT 09:41 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, November 16 2012
 

When you think of a historic event what comes to mind¯ Apollo 11, the American Revolution or perhaps Pearl Harbor, right?  Well, yes, those events rank as such because they shaped and changed our country.  Therefore, I found it a bit stunning when I read that when Colorado and Washington recently “legalized” pot that some offered it up as a historical event.  Quite the contrary, I say.  Never mind that it’s still federally illegal and is one of the most commonly abused drugs in the US.  Nevertheless, last week, the voters in those two states passed laws to allow those over 21 years old to possess marijuana for recreational use. 

Have our states’ revenues become so starved that we have to resort to compromising our stance on something we once felt was socially unacceptable?  Does it matter that marijuana heightens the risk of lung infections, impairs short-term memory, increases the risk of heart attacks and damages the respiratory system and brain?  Besides alcohol, marijuana is the leading cause of substance abuse.  What about the increased health costs that will be incurred as a result?  But wait, those issues pale in comparison to the supposedly 13.7 billion dollars the US government would save in prohibition enforcement and the tax revenues, also in the billions, proponents say would be generated  in the next several years.  I do not care how you slice it, dice it or downplay the side effects of marijuana, legalizing it is not the answer to our social or economic ills. 

Millions of folks use marijuana and now we will see an upward rise in the numbers.  Researchers say that the costs to treat alcohol and tobacco related issues outweigh the revenues they bring in.  So what makes anyone think that the same trend with marijuana will not follow?  Those passionate for legalizing marijuana for recreational use have flawed thinking and the aftermath will not be pretty.

We are becoming more tolerant of things we once thought morally distasteful and now accept them as being essential to our survival.  What has caused this pollution in our thinking?  I cringe to think what’s next.

Posted by: Molly Painter AT 06:58 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, November 09 2012

 

 

Defining personhood and its characteristics is as controversial as it is varied.  The US Supreme Court recently refused to examine a case by the Oklahoma Supreme Court regarding a proposed personhood amendment that sought to give equal legal protection and due process to those yet born, specifically those at the conception stage of life.  Supporters of the amendment believe that at conception life begins, opponents believed the amendment would ban abortion   Yep, here we go again but this is hardly a believable outcome, considering most of the justices are Christian.  Proponents were only asking that the amendment be put on the November ballot for the voters to decide.

Opponents to the amendment stated that if passed, this would have had devastating effects on a woman’s right to have an abortion, not their only but biggest objection.  Those against the measure clearly see no value in the human embryo and do not view it as “true” life yet. 

The issue of “personhood” is clearly defined in the Bible.  Life begins at conception and science, often at odds with Christianity, tells us the same thing.  From the very start, the genetic makeup of a person is determined, along with other characteristics, such as the sex, hair and eye color are also already established. 

God tells us in Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you…” and in Psalm 139:13, David tells us that …”your eyes saw my unformed body.” 

Why we continue to pursue with such vigor that the unborn life is of no value goes against the very grain of God.  The yet unborn life still has a purpose to fulfill and who knows, your destiny may hinge on that very life you are trying to deny rights to.

This Supreme Court may have reinforced their decision about the starting point of life but the real question I would like to ask those brilliant scholars is, “What will you tell your maker when you see Him as to why you took the position you did on a life He created in His own image, not yours? 

Posted by: Molly Painter AT 07:23 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, November 02 2012

I have been taught that using the title of Mr. or Mrs. when addressing an individual is a sign of respect.  To me, holding the title of Mr. President holds the highest form of this honor. 

Election day is November 6, 2012, and the American voters will be charged with making a choice for the next Mr. President of the United States.  Due to all the information we have to process about the candidates, making a clear choice is anything but easy; our futures are at stake.  Making choices are not always “touchy feely” ones, ruled by emotions, but rather ones made with realistic expectations; ones made through facts, coupled with prayer. 

What are important factors to consider when deciding whom to choose?  Character and conduct tell us most about a person; it is what sets him apart from the rest.  What is his moral code and how does he treat others?  How does he treat his spouse and family?  Is life all about him?

Consider work ethic and experience.  How would you rate his government performance record up to now?  Does he qualify to run the day-to-day operations of this nation?  What exactly has he done with and in his life that would lead you to think he can actually cope with the strains of bipartisanship?  Find out the facts.  Write them down on a piece of paper and look at them in black and white.

Much has happened to us in the last four years.  Can we keep going in the same direction?  Or is there really hope with change coming?  Take all of this into account before you cast your ballot this time.  One vote can make a difference for either restoration or downfall. 

Ask God to confirm to you His choice because He does see what we cannot.  Then ask yourself, Can I, out of respect for the individual I choose, address him as ‘Mr. President’ having it be the greatest accolade you could give to another?

From what I have heard, witnessed and prayed about:  Mitt Romney is qualified to be called ‘Mr.’ whether he sits in the oval office or not.

Katie Altobellis

Molly Painter  

Posted by: Molly Painter AT 06:54 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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