A few thoughts for the mid-week…
First an Icon of American Religious life passed away yesterday. Oral Roberts died at the age of 91. Regardless of one’s views of his ministry, theology or lifestyle Reverend Roberts was a trendsetter. For better or worse he was a major influence on American religious life. Roberts in his television ministry, crusades and university helped to bring Pentecostalism into the mainstream of American life. His positive message of “Something good is going to happen to you” inspired many who were not Pentecostals. The University that bears his will likely be his legacy in merging his beliefs with an institution that became regionally accredited breaking out of the simple unaccredited Bible College tradition that was a hallmark of Pentecostalism and Evangelicalism. There are some that loved him and some that loathed him but one cannot deny his influence on the American religious life and culture. His departure from the scene leaves Billy Graham, Pat Robertson and Paul Crouch from the pioneers of modern Christian media. While Roberts was controversial in terms of some of his pleas for financial support and criticism of his lifestyle, he never seemed to me to have the angry edge of other early televangelists including Jimmy Swaggart, Jerry Fallwell (in his early ministry) and others. Having worked in a television ministry while I was in seminary back in the early 1990s I am not a big fan of television ministries from the standpoint of the huge amounts of money involved and potential for abuse. However one cannot deny the impact that Oral Roberts had on the American religious scene.
Tiger Woods has crashed hard and I pray that for the sake of him and his family that he will be reconciled with his wife and make amends. I have no double that he will return to greatness on the PGA Tour but for now I hope that he is able to reclaim his life. As much as his actions speak poorly of him as a person I am disappointed with the media which has used every opportunity to take him down further. Of course this was aided by his media advisers who let him be a target and did not pre-empt things that they obviously knew would come to light. Can anyone say Bill Clinton or Richard Nixon? I hope that the media frenzy around Tiger dies down so he and his wife can attempt to salvage their marriage if it is even possible now.
The Phillies, Blue Jays and Mariners deal to bring Roy Halliday to Philly and send Cliff Lee to Seattle looks to me like a bad deal for the Phillies, Halliday is a great pitcher but unproven in the post-season and the Phillies gave up their best pitcher and top pitching prospect to get him. The addition of John Lackey to the Red Sox makes their rotation very strong. The departure of Hideki Matsui for the Yankees to the Angels helps the Halos who had lost Chone Figgens and Lackey. The Angels will need to find a good starter to replace Lackey. The Yankees picked up Curtis Granderson from the Tigers at very little expense to them. The Giants have not done much as of yet and the Orioles acquired starting pitcher Kevin Millwood from the Rangers and came to terms with Matt Albers and Cla Meredith. The Orioles could use some power in their offensive lineup.
Barry Bonds agent Jeff Borris stated last week that Barry Bonds would not return to playing baseball. Bonds has not played the last two season but not retired. His name will be forever linked to the steroids controversy and his reputation tainted for years to come. I do not know if he will get in the Hall of Fame, but if the players from the 1940s and 1950s who used amphetamines can be admitted and Gaylord Perry who admitted using the spit-ball, which was illegal can be in the club I see no reason not to admit Bonds. Many players have been named in the scandal but only Bonds has been pursued by investigators and prosecutors who have spent millions of dollars of our tax money over the past number of years to attempt to catch Bonds. However, their misconduct of investigators and prosecutors themselves who violated the law in attempt to gather evidence to convict Bonds is shameful and their inability to get charges to stick shows the weakness of their case. It is time for the investigation of Bonds and the others to end. Let baseball fans, writers and players determine their future.
The Most Valuable Network which I had been invited on in the summer to write The View From 102 went Tango Uniform last week. I had been unable to post as they had been going through a transition that did not work out. I am contacting media outlets who are taking writers from MVN to relaunch the View from 102.
The Navy released the promotion zone message for FY 2011. I am right in the middle of the zone for consideration to the grade of Commander. I hope that I make it.
My Bishop for the Armed Services visited this week for a trip to the USS Carl Vinson. We had a nice time with him and I deeply appreciate him. Bishop Woodall is a dear friend.
I am looking at a couple of writing projects for actual books. As they develop you may see snippets of them here.
I watched two of my favorite Christmas movies last night Scrooged and Christmas Vacation. They are classic albeit a bit twisted. Would you expect anything else from me?
In less than two weeks I will have oral surgery to emplace my implant where the Undead Tooth of Terror used to live. While I look forward to getting something back into the empty slot were the Undead Tooth of Terror lived, thrived and survived I am not looking forward to the surgery, the anesthesia or the excavation and drilling process.
Christmas is coming and I am nowhere near ready. Maybe I should move my celebration to January 6th, the Russian Orthodox Christmas…more time plus post Christmas sales….hmmm….
I have duty tomorrow, get to stay in house at the medical center.