Not to see the wood...

From an ecclesial flyer about the use of church taxes:

The church “cultivates its forests in a sustainable and nature-protecting way ... enough space is consciously left for animals … When a tree is damaged by a storm, it is often cut away at a height of a few metres … woodpeckers are the first to arrive … wild bees, squirrels, bats, etc. follow …”

Jesus, as written by Markus: The axe is applied to the tree's roots; every tree that fails to bring satisfying fruits is chopped down and thrown into the fire. luw

Motto for Christmas

“Do as God did: become human!” – funny, but worthless pun by somebody who apparently does not know that we are not God.

“Abraham was the first who proclaimed that God is God and that it's therefore the human's task to be human.” (Elie Wiesel, survivor of the Shoa)

Al Naqba – the catastrophe?

The immigration of several hundred thousand Jews from Europe in the previous centuries is part of the past history of the “catastrophe”, which Arabs call “Naqba” – the foundation of the state Israel. An Israeli Arab is asked what he thinks about that time.

His mother, he says, is ninety-five years old today and experienced that time. She says: “Jews are intelligent people. They brought technology, agricultural improvement, revived economy. Before they came, we had no electricity, no running water, no streets. There was nothing, nothing at all. Palestine was a poor country. Our shoes were made of old car tires. Jews have changed this country – it's a Garden of Eden today.” mas

Two countries – problem solved?

When asked about which country he would prefer to live in in that case, a Palestine Arab in Israel answers:

Even if he could become the king of Jordan, he would like to live here, in Israel, the place where he can freely speak the way he thinks. He adds empathically: All of the Israeli Arabs think that way, some of them just don't dare to tell. We were going to test that by asking our Palestine cab driver a slightly modified question: Could there be two countries one time? Definitely not – it's stated by the Koran, the Torah and the Bible. There shall be one country only. And that country must be a Muslim one. ses

To know the scene

What is it like when a couple wants to marry in a Catholic church, and thank God or whomever, a former altar boy is present at such an “event”.

The whole wedding party is happy about the one, who can show when to stand, kneel, sit or say “Amen”, the FAS reports on 9 October 2016. The humorous suggestion – remembering the glorious times of satire, when it still taught us to face reality – how he could market himself: “Rent a Catholic. Hallelujah instead of hossa. You want to have a party Catholic-style? Prayback instead of payback – I will be your entertainer, the best for religious parties. What I offer: profound knowledge of religious rituals, role model, bookings available for weddings, child communion, christening, funeral. The portfolio is extendable for protestant interests.” Question to his friends: “I bet I will be booked!” Nobody objects. pez

From a report about a journey through France, August 2016

At the portal of the Gothic cathedral in Metz she is still standing: a crooked, blindfolded woman with a broken cane – unnoticed, forgotten. Who will lift her up after the unimaginable has happened?

Is it easier or is it harder than to re-establish the style of life of the old orders? The question is meaningless. It is only important that the blindfold is removed, not from the woman's face of the synagogue, but from the church's. This enables it to see the first and only love of God in another's face. bek

The purpose of the human race

September 17th, 2016: the 183rd Oktoberfest in Munich starts. Because of the threat of terror, the largest fair of the world is surrounded by a fence this year.

Asked by journalists, a cheerful man in lederhosen swings his beer mug and answers determined: “There is no reason for fear. There is only reason to celebrate.” Then, an anthropologic statement follows: “The human race”, he says vigorously, “is made to celebrate”. He points to the people in the tent and says: “This proves the point”. mas

Germany can handle the introduction of the shock pictures

At the kiosk:

One pack of Marlboro, please

Which?

Gold

I got several ones. Do you want these with fallen out teeth?

No, I already have these

Hole in the neck?

No, got those already, too.

I got smoker's legs

Okay.  I do not have these, yet.

“I like being an import priest!”

In an interview with “Augsburger Allgemeine”, ZdK president Thomas Sternberg says import priest are no long-term solution for the lack of priests in Germany.

He probably is not a soccer fan. There, imports are absolutely normal. The same holds true for international management. No change is in sight. Why would I, an Italian-born, not be able to do a great job for the diocese Augsburg just as Carlo Ancelotti is now trying to do for FC Bayern. So that is why like being an “import priest” in the diocese of Augsburg, where I can put in my experience from home into counselling in Germany. In the episcopal ordinariate I am responsible for approximately 150 priests from the world church, and I do counselling as well. Hence, I feel obliged to lend a voice to the 150 priests from the world church. We like being here and do not feel like foreigners! Everybody talks about a globalised world. The Catholic church might even be the oldest, global company. Why would German churches not want to learn from priests from the world church? We are always available for help, also for the president of the central committee of the Catholics. My first advice to him would be: Pope Francis himself said after his election, he came from the end of the world. I doubt that Mr. Sternberg would consider him an “import pope” or use the word of “import” at all in this context! alp

Thinking about Europe at night

The EU plans to submit a resolution at UNESCO, which will declare the Temple Mount in Jerusalem a solely muslim sanctuary. Israel is worried about this for good reasons.

Within the EU, there seems to be an anti-Israelic understanding, which works blindly and without reasoning. When the unreflected zeal of “for Palestine” is added, the situation becomes dangerous. This zeal was considered threatening by reasonable Palestines already when Arafat was in power: it does not support balance, but corruption and terror.

The possible level of embarassment can be observed with this resolution. It is equivalent to claiming that in the cathedral of Reims no French king has ever been crowned; that the Vatican was built on a historic lie about a Petrus grave; that Karl the Great received the corespondent award in the year 800 in Brussels as the first European. We recommend not to suggest the planned resolution to the UNESCO, but to approach the Knopp publishing house, which prints anything that sounds remotely like conspiracy or scandal. ses

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