The first family, always and forever. Eight years of handling his business, of caring for this country and really not getting the just due, the credit that Obama deserves for taking over from a president that really didn't do too well; a president - G. W. Bush - that left this country in shambles.
Whether you care to admit it or not, for the hand that the Obama's were dealt, they did a pretty darn good job. About six years ago, I stopped reading all the criticism relating to Barack Obama. The reason: no matter what he did, the under-current of racist America would always attempt to undercut Barack and his family. Regardless, they handled it all with the class and dignity of a King and a Queen.
On the one hand, I'm sorely going to miss the "First Family." On the other hand, I'm glad they can get back to a semblance of a normal life. However, we need the Obama's. Malia is headed to Harvard, Sasha is a HS freshman. The future is extremely bright for the Obama's and I'm rooting, meditating and praying for their continued success.
Barack, Ms. Michelle, Malia and Sasha... we love you! Keep doing what you do, you will forever be..... The First Family.
After looking at a picture of an emaciated Ethiopian, one person stated, "man, that is sad," another stated, "we can help by praying for them."
We can help by sending MONEY, by sending FOOD. How many times have you been in a serious bind, not of hunger or starvation, but lets say you needed money to pay a utility bill or to pay rent/mortgage. You come across someone who says, "I'll pray for you." That's all well and good, and in the long run, sometimes in the short run, prayer can be effective, but you would have been a lot more content if that individual would have said, "here's $200, go pay that bill."
The "long run" has already passed for our starving brothers and sisters (and YES, they are our spiritual brothers and sisters) so they need concrete, direct assistance, NOW.
Send a few bucks, even $5 will help a few people. You sit in church, listening to shysters on a weekly basis, then you give him 10% of your earnings. You have no idea what he's doing with your money. Sure, he has a few non-profit organizations (additional tax write-offs and places to launder your money, your tithes), but he's also financing his lavish lifestyle.
I'm sick of people defending their pastors by saying, "he doesn't even collect a salary, he has his own business."
If you think for one moment that your weekly funds are not supporting him, his family, his lifestyle, and his fly-by-night business, you're on some type of acid trip.
Help those who need our help the most! Like it or not, we are our brothers keeper.
- Aid for Africa
6909 Ridgewood Ave
Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Tel: (202) 531-2000
Fax: (301) 986-7902
- Feed My Starving Children
Phone: (763) 951-306
- Feed The Children
PO Box 36
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73101-0036
- World Vision
Phone: (888) 511-6443
P.O. Box 9716
Federal Way, WA 98063-9716
Nagasaki is famous in the history of Japanese Christianity. The city had the largest concentration of Christians in all of Japan. St. Mary’s Cathedral was the mega-church of its time, with 12,000 baptized members.
Nagasaki was the community where the legendary Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier planted a mission church in 1549. The Catholic community at Nagasaki grew and eventually prospered over the next several generations. However it eventually became clear to the Japanese that the Catholic Portuguese and Spanish commercial interests were exploiting Japan. It only took a couple of generations before all Europeans – and their foreign religion – were expelled from the country.
From 1600 until 1850, being a Christian in Japan was a capital crime. In the early 1600s, Japanese Christians who refused to recant their faith were subject to unspeakable tortures – including crucifixion. But after a mass crucifixion occurred, the reign of terror expired, and it appeared to all observers that Japanese Christianity was extinct.
However, 250 years later, after the gunboat diplomacy of U.S. Commodore Matthew Perry forced open an offshore island for American trade purposes, it was discovered that there were thousands of baptized Christians in Nagasaki, living their faith in secret in a catacomb-like existence, completely unknown to the government.
With this revelation, the Japanese government started another purge; but because of international pressure, the persecutions were stopped and Nagasaki Christianity came up from the underground. By 1917, with no financial help from the government, the revitalized Christian community had built the massive St. Mary’s Cathedral in the Urakami River district of Nagasaki.
So it was the height of irony that the massive Cathedral – one of only two Nagasaki landmarks that could be positively identified from 31,000 feet up (the other one was the Mitsubishi armaments factory complex, which had run out of raw materials because of the Allied naval blockade) – became Ground Zero for Fat Man.
At 11:02 am, during Thursday morning mass, hundreds of Nagasaki Christians were boiled, evaporated, carbonized or otherwise disappeared in a scorching, radioactive fireball that exploded 500 meters above the cathedral. The black rain that soon came down from the mushroom cloud contained the mingled cellular remains of many Nagasaki Shintoists, Buddhists and Christians. The theological implications of Nagasaki’s Black Rain surely should boggle the minds of theologians of all denominations.
Most Nagasaki Christians did not survive the blast. 6,000 of them died instantly, including all who were at confession that morning. Of the 12,000 church members, 8,500 of them eventually died as a result of the bomb.
Many of the others were seriously sickened with a highly lethal entirely new disease: radiation sickness.
Three orders of nuns and a Christian girl’s school nearby disappeared into black smoke or became chunks of charcoal. Tens of thousands of other innocent, non-Christian non-combatants also died instantly, and many more were mortally or incurably wounded. Some of the victim’s progeny are still suffering from the trans-generational malignancies and immune deficiencies caused by the deadly plutonium and other radioactive isotopes produced by the bomb.
And here is one of the most cruelly ironic points: What the Japanese Imperial government could not do in 250 years of persecution (i.e., to destroy Japanese Christianity) American Christians did in mere seconds.
Even after a slow revival of Christianity since World War II, membership in Japanese churches still represents a small fraction of 1 percent of the general population, and the average attendance at Christian worship services across the nation is reported to be only 30 per Sunday. Surely the decimation of Nagasaki at the end of the war crippled what at one time was a vibrant church.