Chosen: End Times Newsletter – Issue 100

The Minister’s Corner
“You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32

Jesus Wept
By Regina

John 11:35 “Jesus Wept.” is widely known as one of the shortest verses in the Bible. For me, it is also one of the most touching. It leaps from the page, grips my heart and gives it a good squeeze each time I read it. It’s interesting how this very short scripture can and does evoke so much within your heart as well as your thoughts when you truly sit down and ponder what it means and what it is meant to show us about this man who became our Savior.

I can’t sit down and watch the Passion of the Christ without crying through nearly the entire movie. And I often think of Christ Jesus, and who he was as a man; of his humanity, and how this soul, that was created by Father Yahweh before all others as The Word, Michael the Archangel, became man and lived for 33 years in the flesh, on this earth and among all living things that he bi-created. I wonder what his thoughts were, and what he was thinking and feeling deep down inside as he cried in the John 11 account, and if the tears that he shed for his dear friend Lazarus whom he loved and the suffering of Lazarus’ family were also perhaps symbolic of the tears that he might shed for those of mankind who suffer and are lost.

There are many accounts on the human emotions that Christ Jesus felt. Anger, frustration, sadness, fear, love, pity, compassion, even a need for companionship… and somehow, reading these accounts and pondering how he must have felt deep down inside provides a glimpse of the man he was and draws us closer to him in the realization that he felt the same things that we do, and faced the same temptations, and he warriored through it all and was victorious over the same powers of darkness that attempted to keep him from fulfilling his mission.

Our Savior was human, in every way that we are human and with all the human emotions that make us unique creations created in Father’s image. Emotions are something though, that transcends the veil and extends into even the unseen spiritual realm. Yes, they are human, but they are also spiritual. Emotions are something that we all share with Christ Jesus, Father Yahweh, the Holy Angels and Ghosts and mankind; and even with portions of the animal kingdom. Emotions are a commonality that binds us together and that we can all relate to and in thinking about how Jesus wept, makes it easier to relate to him as well.

While I look upon our Savior with admiration and awe, I also look upon him as an amazing and spiritual human being, who perfectly did each day what we struggle to do. He freely expressed as well as mastered his own emotions, listened intently to his Father and obediently followed Yahweh’s commands and in the process brought glory to Her in so many ways, including becoming our Savior as well as a shining example for us all.

Giving It All To Father

Have you ever made yourself sick from the worry of not having any food to eat or not having a roof over your head? What about what you will wear on your back? During these troubling times do you turn to the One who will gladly give you these things? Do you call out to your Heavenly Father to help you with the things you need? This world we live in today has really gone downhill. People have turned their backs on the only One who loves them enough to have created them. Here is an idea that I heard on the radio sometime back. I was listening to a Christian station and this lady was talking about how she had a really bad past and she was finding it hard to get past the things she had done when she was younger. She said that it was eating away at her. She eventually bought two pieces of wood and made a cross out of them. After she had made her cross she decided to write down on pieces of paper all the things she had done in her past that she wasn't proud of. Not only that, she wrote down things that she needed to give to Father. The things that she needed to forgive people for. After she got that done she took small nails and nailed those things to her cross. Once she was done with that she sat and cried and prayed that Father would forgive her for the things that she had done in her past. She felt Father take the burdens she had hung onto for many years upon Herself. 1 Peter 5:7 casting all your care upon Him, because He cares about you.

A year and a half ago my family was in need of a roof over our heads. We had one but the land we were living on was bought by someone else so we had decided the best thing for our family was to relocate. I was worried about where we were going to live so I prayed to Father that if it was Her will that She guide us to where She wanted us to be. One day I was looking through the local newspaper. I seen an ad about a three bedroom house in the same town my mom lived in. When my husband came home from work we met with the owner and she showed us around the house. We really didn't have the money to move into this house but I continued to pray to Father for help. The very same day we were meeting with the owner once more with the rent and the deposit. Father paved the way for us to move to this house. On top of that 6 months later my husband was laid off from his job. He went on unemployment which isn't much money. So of course I again turned to Father. Father took my worry from me so I wouldn't have to stress over the money we needed for rent and our other bills. I asked the other Light of Life ministers to pray for my husband to find a job so we wouldn't have to move yet again. During all this I placed my full trust in Father to take care of us. Not only did Father do that through Her ministers but She also helped me help my husband who was really stressed and worried about what was going to happen to his family. Matthew 6:25-34 "This is why I tell you: Don't worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Isn't life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the sky; they don't sow or reap or gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren't you worth more than they? Can any of you add a single cubit to his height by worrying? And why do you worry about clothes? Learn how the wildflowers of the field grow: they don't labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these! If that's how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won't He do much more for you-you of little faith? So don't worry, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?' For the idolaters eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. Therefore don't worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

During our time of need I took those Scriptures and wrote them across my heart. We must always remember to give all our problems over to Father because She will take care of Her children. Philippians 4:6 Don't worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. Father will support Her children. She is just waiting for us to hand over our burdens to Her. When we hand our burdens to Her we should always remember to give thanks to Her for what She does for us. Psalm 55:22 Cast your burden on the LORD, and He will support you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.

Inspired Writings

Fear. Confusion. Delusion.

These were the three items that I cited in a dream recently. I was in a bed with three other individuals, one on my right, one to my front, and the other on my left. I was trying to tell each of them three main concepts that demons try to use against people to destroy them. When I cited those three words, the later-to-mid twenty-year-old male on my right listened intently and also made eye contact, seemingly making sure to remember the advice. The one towards the middle that was also a bit more distant didn't seem to be very sure as to whether they were willing to accept or take the offering of advice. The one on my left, whom was also dressed as if a ninja to camouflage with the bed I was in, seemed to totally ignore the message, perhaps even distracted about other things.

An interesting concept is that I had not remembered what the last word was that I had cited. I knew I used a word that started with a “d,” but I did not have a direct recollection of it until recently.

The first two words, I think, might be well understood as to their definition, but the word “delusion” might be a little misconstrued with the word “illusion.”

delusion (courtesy of Dictionary.com):
1. an act or instance of deluding.
2. the state of being deluded.
3. a false belief or opinion: delusions of grandeur.
4. Psychiatry. a fixed false belief that is resistant to reason or confrontation with actual fact: a paranoid delusion.

illusion (also courtesy of Dictionary.com):
1. something that deceives by producing a false or misleading impression of reality.
2. the state or condition of being deceived; misapprehension.
3. an instance of being deceived.
4. Psychology. a perception, as of visual stimuli (optical illusion), that represents what is perceived in a way different from the way it is in reality.
5. a very thin, delicate tulle of silk or nylon having a cobwebbed appearance, for trimmings, veilings, and the like.
6. Obsolete. the act of deceiving; deception; delusion.

There is a fine difference between the two words. In this, an illusion might be something that is around oneself, where a delusion is something that one is also a part of. A person can wander around an illusion of a planet without losing a sense of the fact that what they see is not exactly what is really there, where delusion is a mental state that one allows themselves to fall into.

In the past, it was already taught that wrongful fear is one of the main items that the evil side of the war will try to implement to cause a person to be under their control. If one's fear is not of Father, there is strong possibility that their motivation for doing something may have spawned out of misdirection. As fear of Father is the beginning of wisdom, wrongful fear incites wrongful, unwise action. Thus, in the times to come, and in preparation for the Rapture, wrongful fear must be avoided at all costs. This includes fear for one's belongings; fear for almost anything outside of Father, because Father can take care of all the things that would be of any form of concern, at all.

Proverbs 29:25 — The fear of man is a snare, but the one who trusts in the LORD is protected.

Psalm 5:10 — Punish them, God; let them fall by their own schemes. Drive them out because of their many crimes, for they rebel against You.

Then there is confusion, which can be very easy if one's foundation is not solid. Consider the parable that Christ had told about the two men who built their houses, one on sand and another on a rock.

Matthew 7:26-27 — But everyone who hears these words of Mine and doesn't act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, the rivers rose, the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed. And its collapse was great!"

What might possibly go through a foolish man's mind when his house comes crashing down? It is a very important concept to consider, as it could lead to reflection on not only the foundation one builds upon, but perhaps the complete structure of their own house. Forethought could potentially help stop a disaster from occurring, especially if Father is involved.

Confusion, like fear, can also be like a pandemic. If one is in a large crowd, and suddenly loud noises are heard and panic ensues in a large number of people in the crowd, understanding what to do amongst the confusion can be difficult. Being swamped in the confusion might be too easy, especially if one's basis is not solid. One must not allow things around them to get in Father's Way.

Further, one must also not allow there to be any form of confusion of what Father has stated and promised. If one does not understand that Father will save Her people, and that She is always there to protect Her flock, it would be advised to find that understanding. Being unsure concerning Father's standing and foundation, or Her Word, allows an enemy to plant confusion in the cracks, where the plant grows and further cracks one's own foundation.

James 1:8 — An indecisive man is unstable in all his ways.

Confusion, in that way, places a weapon in the enemy's hands, and delusion does as well. By ignorantly accepting any lie that does not actually fit in with scripture, whether by insight or otherwise, the enemy is given the ability to control exactly what one thinks that they are seeing. It can be truly diabolical, but if one takes a small glimpse at what one sees on television without being absorbed by it, they might see a delusion. Delusions are often even a tool used as part of the plot of a story, and that, perhaps, might cause one to even be led into disbelief in delusions around them, or the other way around. Sometimes, those that see certain delusions are titled conspiracy theorists. Sometimes.

The way to getting away from a delusion before it destroys oneself? There are actually so many answers to this one question it can be a bit astounding.

Now, one must not forget that just as a spider can weave an intricate web, so can the works of evil be delicately placed in order to produce the maximum effect on any who happen to fall into it. Fear, confusion, and delusion can all be used individually, two at a time, or all at once. Once tangled in a part of it, it is not hard to get wrapped up in the rest of the trap. Father will help to protect an individual, but the individual must also help Father.

As the Rapture nears, it might also be good to keep in mind these three things when observing the world around them. Father can utilize these same very tools in a righteous way that will cause evil to crumble, and if evil tries to utilize the tools to try to maintain control, the chaos will only grow. It's a matter of time, and seeing, considering, and taking appropriate measures about the patterns beforehand will help to further prepare in many ways.

Nourishment From The Throne
“For the LORD gives wisdom. From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.” Proverbs 2:6

Cherubic Commander: Off the coastline of India in shallow water is the remains of yet another ancient false religious port that was swallowed up during a judgment by Father against those people who resided there.

It would be impossible for your minds to entertain all knowledge of the heavens and what is taking place. Just know this for now: The invisible heavens are larger than anything you could imagine. Try to imagine the visible heavens that are much smaller in comparison. You cannot even begin to ferment that task because of the expanse that exits in the visible realm. Then imagine all of the stars in the visible heavens, for the invisible heavens out numbers them many times over in holy angels and holy ghosts. The earth and its inhabitants are but a drop of water in a sea so wide you cannot comprehend its dept or width that teams with superior life.

All of you have wondered how Satan, his demons, and even converts are so illogical in turning on Father and Her family. As an example, look to the Word. All things are repeated. What happened to some of the Israelites that well knew Father had delivered them from bondage? When they were in the wilderness they turned to false worship and Father punished them harshly. They knew Father existed. They witnessed Father's opening of the Red Sea and their own deliverance, yet, many went astray. This is recorded for your insight. It is so you can come to understand all things that occur in creation.

Father.

Christ Jesus.

Faith.

Works.

Deliverance.

The two central characters are Father and Christ Jesus. Father says have faith She can deliver. Christ Jesus provided the sacrifice necessary for the foundation of faith in deliverance to rest upon. Father expects works where the situation exists to do so. Works proves one's faith is not without a willingness to act in Father's behalf. Deliverance comes from Father's assessment of those that rely upon Her to deliver regardless of what life might throw at any of us.

Signs From Above
“He rescues and delivers, He performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth, for He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.” Daniel 6:27

Former Navy Seal watches orange lights converge on V-shaped UFO
August 17, 2009
The Examiner

The UFO Traffic Report for Monday, August 17, 2009, includes 10 selected sightings over 9 states, according to witness statements filed in the past 48 hours with the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) database. Please keep in mind that most UFO reports can be explained as something natural or manmade. If MUFON investigates and reports back on any of these cases, I will update this page. The following reports and their headlines are unedited. You can read my selected cases by type of UFO report at the UFO Traffic Report index page. AZ, August 16, 2009 – Narrative below was based submitted by MUFON Dispatch for witness based on phone conversation with witness. MUFON Case # 18717. A former Navy Seal "with top security clearance" and no prior UFO sightings, reported "a large V formation of 5 lights materialize as he watched, at an estimated altitude of 8-10,000 feet. He than described seeing a series of orange lights converge on the triangle formation from various directions, followed by the object fading out. He estimates the total time for the event at about 12 seconds from beginning to end." He went outside later in the evening hoping to see the object again, but instead saw "a red disc-shaped object flying from east to west in a high arc with a fighter jet tailing it before both were out of his field of vision."

Mass UFO sighting in Russia, child takes amazing photo
All News Web
Michael Cohen m.cohen@allnewsweb.com

Three children, Lyuda Kurenkova, Veronica Prudnikova and Pasha Arbekov, were playing in a field in the Russian village of Ilyinke in the early evening hours of the August 7 when they noticed a large and perfectly clear UFO pass overhead. The classic flying saucer shaped UFO cast a large shadow over the field and the girls began yelling to alert other villagers of the bizarre sight. Meanwhile the UFO made a few circles of the village before heading to a nearby communications tower. As the UFO approached the tower its lights went out. It seemed as if the UFO was interfering with its electrical supply. The children described the UFO as glowing and coloured both blue and red.

UFO hovers low over Pennsylvania barn as witnesses watch from car
August 19, 2009
The Examiner

The UFO Traffic Report for Wednesday, August 13, 2009, includes 13 selected sightings over 11 states, according to witness statements filed in the past 48 hours with the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) database. Please keep in mind that most UFO reports can be explained as something natural or manmade. If MUFON investigates and reports back on any of these cases, I will update this page. The following reports and their headlines are unedited. You can read my selected cases by type of UFO report at the UFO Traffic Report index page. PA, August 18, 2009 – Unusual object spotted hovering over a barn silo on route 113. MUFON Case # 18737. Two Pennsylvania witnesses had an encounter with a low flying UFO about 2 a.m. on August 18. They first saw a bright object that appeared to be about a half-mile away, but they noticed how very bright the object was. The object also had a pulsating red light and "two or three seperate white lights." As they moved close to the object, they realized it was now hovering over a barn about 100 feet in the air and shining a white light down onto the barn. They slowed their vehicle down, turned off the radio, and could hear no sounds from the object. They were nervous and turned onto a small country road, lost sight of the barn, then a minute later when the barn came into view again, the object was gone.

Three Oregon witnesses report multiple UFOs on August 12
August 19, 2009
The Examiner

Three Oregon witnesses are reporting multiple UFOs in the sky on August 12, according to testimony from the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) database. In the first case, a witness was northbound on I-5 when a hovering object was noticed with three "huge bright white lights on the bottom in the middle of the craft." The slow moving object was between 100 and 120 feet off of the ground, 200 feet long, black in color, and triangle shaped. In the second case, three witnesses watched three objects fly overhead at a high altitude that were extremely bright. The slow moving objects stopped at times and pulsated. The third case involves a witness who saw the same objects as the second case, but only saw two objects. The following are the unedited reports from MUFON. OR, August 12, 2009 – interstate-5 woodburn oregon 3 huge bright lights moved slowly over freeway. MUFON Case # 18733. i was driving on my way home traveling northbound on i-5 it was 8:15pm on the 12th day of august 2009 when i noticed a object hovering in the sky it had 3 huge bright white lights on the bottom in the middle of the craft. it was moving from northwest to southeast very slowly above the freeway about 100-120 feet off the ground i was checking it out while i was moving closer to it thought it to be a bit strange .it had no blinking lights and it was huge i believe it to be around 200ft long black in color it had a shape of a triangle i was excited, went to pull over and when i stopped the car it was gone i was surprized no one else stoped to check it out also ..thats my brief encounter

Pennsylvania orb UFO videotaped over local farm
August 19, 2009
The Examiner

The Murrysville, PA, family that has made multiple UFO sightings this year, has reported another object captured on video, according to witness testimony from the Mutual UFO Network database. The witness and her daughter noticed flashing lights near Ader Road and pulled over to investigate. A local farmer came out to see if they needed help. The witness says that they then observed "a large bright yellow-ish orb light over the farm field pretty low above the trees." The object hovered and dimmed, moved to a higher altitude and doubled in size

Signs Down Below
"But know this: difficult times will come in the last days. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, without love for what is good, traitors, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to the form of religion but denying its power."  2 Timothy 3:1-5

Next step in H1N1 scare: Microchip implants
WorldNetDaily
by Drew Zahn
August 22, 2009

A Florida-based company that boasts selling the world's first and only federally approved radio microchip for implanting in humans is now turning its development branch toward "emergency preparedness," hoping to produce an implant that can automatically detect in its host's bloodstream the presence of swine flu or other viruses deemed a "bio-threat." VeriChip Corporation currently sells a small, under-the-skin Radio Frequency Identification capsule, or RFID, that patients can opt to have implanted, containing a number computer-linked to their medical records, enabling doctors with a special reader to access the information even if the patient is unconscious or unidentified. The company boasts its microchip, roughly the size of a grain of rice, is the only such implant approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. But VeriChip has also turned its attention to other uses for the technology, including microchips that be used to tag and log human remains after a disaster and implants the company hopes will be able to warn if their host is infected with the H1N1 swine flu virus, the H5N1 bird flu virus or other pandemic agents deemed to be a "bio-threat."

Scientists uncover new ocean threat from plastics
The Independent
by Steve Connor
August 20, 2009

Scientists have identified a new source of chemical pollution released by the huge amounts of plastic rubbish found floating in the oceans of the world. A study has found that as plastics break down in the sea they release potentially toxic substances not found in nature and which could affect the growth and development of marine organisms. Until now it was thought that plastic rubbish is relatively stable chemically and, apart from being unsightly, its principle threat to living creatures came from its ability to choke or strangle any animals that either got caught in it or ingested it thinking it was food. But the latest research suggests that plastic is also a source of dissolved substances that can easily become widely dispersed in the marine environment. Many of these chemicals are believed to toxic to humans and animals, the scientists said. The scale of plastic pollution in the sea has only been widely recognised in recent years when sailing yachts reported vast areas of ocean, such as an area estimated to be twice the size of Texas in the North Pacific, that seem to be permanently covered in a layer of floating marine litter caught up in swirling ocean currents or gyres.

Biofuel production 'is harming the poor'
The Independent
by Emily Beament
August 17, 2009

The production of biofuels is fuelling poverty, human rights abuses and damage to the environment, Christian Aid warned today. The charity said huge subsidies and targets in developed countries for boosting the production of fuels from plants such as maize and oil palm are exacerbating environmental and social problems in poor nations. And rather than being a "silver bullet" to tackle climate change, the carbon emissions of some of the fuels are higher than fossil fuels because of deforestation driven by the need for land for them to grow. According to a report, Growing Pains, by Christian Aid, industrial scale production of biofuels is worsening problems such as food price hikes in central America, forced displacement of small farmers for plantations and pollution of local water sources. But with 2.4 billion people worldwide currently without secure sources of energy for cooking and heating, Christian Aid believes the renewable fuels do have the potential to help the poor.

World stock markets slide into red
The Independent
by Matt Williams and Holly Williams
August 17, 2009

Stock markets across the world plunged into the red today as jittery investors sold off stock amid fears over US consumer spending. A 1.5 per cent slump in London and falls in Japan were followed by a hefty decline on Wall Street, putting a dent in gains that have seen markets recover to levels not recorded since the onset of financial crisis. The benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged in early trading, falling 182 points – or 2% – to 9,134.28 by mid morning. New York opened today on the back of a 3% drop in the Nikkei in Tokyo and amid tumbling stocks in the FTSE 100. It represented a continuation of the drift downwards which started on Friday as a result of poor consumer confidence figures in the US.

US Government prepares for “Unwillingness” to take the WHO flu vaccine
The Flue Case
by Jane Burgermeister
August 11, 2009

According to a post on Lew Rockwell, the US health authorities are so concerned about an unwillingness to follow government orders during a “swine flu” pandemic that they are devoting a special session to the topic during the International Swine Flu Conference. Handling mass fatalities is also on the programme. The International Swine Flu Conference is being held in Washington D.C. next week, just two weeks after the conference on weight control that I wrote about last week. Here’s a summary of it: Top leaders and key decision-makers of major companies representing a broad range of industries will meet with distinguished scientists, public health officials, law enforcers, first responders, and other experts to discuss pandemic prevention, preparedness, response and recovery at the 1st International Swine Flu Summit.

Signs in Humanity

Top executives pocket huge bonuses despite recession
The Independent
by James Moore
August 18, 2009

FTSE 100 chief executives still took home bonuses equal to 90 per cent of their basic pay, despite plummeting profits and dividends at top companies. Research by the pay consultancy Hewitt New Bridge Street found that the median salary for a FTSE 100 chief executive was £800,000 last year, meaning the bonus would be £720,000. It also found that 40 per cent of FTSE 100 companies had handed pay rises to their directors despite the impact of the recession on profits. David Tankel, principal consultant at Hewitt, said: "While the recession has had its impact on bonus payments, which fell from 2008 levels, bonuses still remained relatively high." Mr Tankel did find evidence that bonuses were starting to fall – companies with a March 2009 year-end paid less than those with a December 2008 year-end. But he said: "Overall bonus payments are higher than many would have expected. Although bonus payments were lower than in recent years, companies have continued to pay over half of the maximum potential amount during a period when nearly all FTSE 100 companies saw their share price fall and when most companies' profits had been impacted by the recession. This has inevitably raised the question of whether bonus schemes are still linking pay and performance appropriately."

Teacher and student sex rife in Liberia
Big News Network
August 19, 2009

The top United Nations envoy to Liberia has spoken about a culture of sexual exploitation and abuse in schools. Ellen Margrethe Loj, speaking in the capital Monrovia at a ceremony in which thousands of books were handed over, said the UN wanted to raise awareness to deter teachers from propositioning young female students. She said young girls were being intimidated or lured into having sex with teachers in exchange for grades. She emphasised the need for greater efforts to ensure that teachers do not take advantage of young girls under the pretext of teaching them, and called for Liberian male teachers to change their behaviour. UN agencies in Liberia are part of a taskforce on sexual and gender-based violence that uses radio jingles, drama, billboards and posters to get the message across.

More forgo clergy-led funerals for those by secular 'celebrants'
USA Today
by Cathy Lynn Grossman
August 19, 2009

When Kenneth Kistner, 85, died in February, his wife, Carmen, didn't call any clergy. At the Detroit memorial service for the Marine veteran and retired educator, Kistner's family read a eulogy — one that Kistner himself approved years earlier, when it was drafted by a secular "celebrant" near their retirement home in Largo, Fla. A growing number of people want to celebrate a loved one's life at a funeral or memorial service without clergy — sometimes even without God. And that's giving rise to the new specialty of pastoral-style secular celebrants who deliver unique personalized eulogies without the rituals of institutional religion.

Horror as burglars scatter baby's ashes
The Independent
by Dave Higgens
August 17, 2009

A mother today described her anguish after three teenage burglars played catch with the ashes of her miscarried child before scattering them around her home. Jenni Weaver, 35, said the 14-year-olds broke into her house in Bridlington, East Yorkshire, and messed about with the box containing the remains before scattering them. She told the Hull Daily Mail she miscarried a baby girl when she was 16 weeks pregnant, seven years ago. Mrs Weaver, who has four children, told the paper: "I was absolutely mortified about what they'd done, that they had disrespected my house in that way. "It was not what they stole, it was the fact they had found my daughter's ashes in a drawer, played catch with them and then scattered them around. "It's been seven years since I lost my daughter and I wasn't ready to scatter her ashes and they have taken that decision out of my hands."

Suicide bomber kills 20, wounds 138 in Ingushetia
Reuters
by Said Tsarnayev
August 17, 2009

NAZRAN, Russia (Reuters) – A suicide bomber killed 20 people and wounded 138 in Russia's Ingushetia region on Monday, turning a simmering Islamist insurgency there into the biggest test of Kremlin control of its southern flank. "Every day something happens on (Ingushetia's)…territory," President Dmitry Medvedev told senior officials in the southern city of Astrakhan. "And they are all links in the same chain, all consequences of terrorist activity." Medvedev sacked Ingushetia's interior minister after the bombing, the latest in a string of assaults, linked by analysts to Islamist insurgents, against police and politicians in Russia's poorest region, bordering Chechnya. The bomb, packed into a yellow truck, exploded at the gates of the main police station in Nazran, Ingushetia's largest city, as officers lined up at the start of their day.

Arks of Safe Haven
www.arksofsafehaven.org
"Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, to bring the poor and homeless into your house, to clothe the naked when you see him, and to not ignore your own flesh [and blood]?" Isaiah 58:7

The mission of Arks of Safe Haven is to connect via an extensive network and online message board forum, those individuals and families who have been affected by recent economic downfalls and are in need with those individuals who are ready, willing and capable of providing assistance to those in need with employment, shelter, work, food, clothing and other necessities.

Coupled with our primary mission of delivering the Kingdom Message of Salvation, the assistance of Arks of Safe Haven is available to all who are in need. Our purposeful intention is to follow in the footsteps of Christ as our example, by providing hope to the hopeless and answering the prayers of those who have been forced to live outside of society.

How You Can Help?

In order to provide for those whose outcry of prayers have reached our heavenly Father's ears, Arks of Safe Haven is seeking out those who are able to provide shelter, whether it be an extra bedroom, empty rental property or a work for room and board agreement. Additionally, we also act as a liaison in connecting those with tangible items to donate to those in need like Food, Water, Clothing, & Other Personal Items. We pray that your heart is motivated to make a contribution, no matter how small. Visit http://www.arksofsafehaven.org and view the many posts from those in need to see if you're able to help with advice, prayers or goods & services.

tasiagirl – Lancaster, CA. – ]Please we just need one angel, who can help us, we need about a two thousand dollars to help us catch up on our bills, we have got so far behind because we have to keep putting money into the truck we got after our car was repossessed. my husband has a eight hundred dollar dmv fine because of expired because we did not have the money and he forgot about the court date, we have had to move twice because our landlord didn't tell us that the house he rented was foreclosed on. our health isn't that good. my husband had to have two surgeries for a defibrillator and needs a third, my heart isn't doing to good, I have to have a full cardiac work up next week, and things just seem to be getting worse instead of better, we have tried to keep the faith but the bills are getting really impatient, we have tried to work things out, but every time we think things are OK they aren't. we have asked for help before and just got nasty replies with a lot of name calling, the people who reply with nasty remarks have no idea how much that hurts, we have humbled ourselves beyond belief, we have begged, and humiliated ourselves, we have been married 37 years, we have tried our darndest to make things work, but we just can't do anymore. we are not asking for anything free, we will pay you back and do what ever you want to make it right, we will truly be blessed and grateful for an angel to come and help us, please no more nasty replies, if you do not like me do not respond, I am not a bad person I just want to see my husband smile again, he is so stressed, I know that there are many many more people worse off than we are and if I could I would help them, I always have been able to help anybody who needed it, so if there is someone out there with a big heart that can help us thank you and thank God and GOD BLESS.

Signs in Natural Disasters
“You are going to hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, because these things must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.” Matthew 24:6-7

Powerful earthquake rocks western Indonesia
August 16, 2009
Associated Press

JAKARTA, Indonesia — A powerful underwater earthquake struck western Indonesia on Sunday, injuring four people as they tried to flee, officials said. Indonesia's meteorological and geophysics agency said no tsunami warning was issued. The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake registered magnitude 6.7, after initially measuring it at 7.0. It struck at 2:38 p.m. (0738 GMT) and was centered at a depth of 28 miles (45 kilometers) under the Indian Ocean seabed, about 70 miles (110 kilometers) west-southwest of the city of Padang on Sumatra island, it said. Four people were injured as they fled in Padang and a house was damaged, said Ade Edward, a local government official. Indonesia straddles a chain of fault lines and volcanoes known as the Pacific "Ring of Fire" and is prone to seismic activity. A huge quake off western Indonesia caused a powerful tsunami in 2004 that killed around 230,000 people in a dozen countries.

Swine flu jab link to killer nerve disease: Leaked letter reveals concern of neurologists over 25 deaths in America
By Jo Macfarlane
15th August 2009

A warning that the new swine flu jab is linked to a deadly nerve disease has been sent by the Government to senior neurologists in a confidential letter. The letter from the Health Protection Agency, the official body that oversees public health, has been leaked to The Mail on Sunday, leading to demands to know why the information has not been given to the public before the vaccination of millions of people, including children, begins. It tells the neurologists that they must be alert for an increase in a brain disorder called Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), which could be triggered by the vaccine. GBS attacks the lining of the nerves, causing paralysis and inability to breathe, and can be fatal. The letter, sent to about 600 neurologists on July 29, is the first sign that there is concern at the highest levels that the vaccine itself could cause serious complications.

Typhoon Morakot: 500 killed in floods and landslides in Taiwan
Floods and mudslides unleashed by Typhoon Morakot last weekend have killed about 500 people on the island, Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou said on Friday.
By our foreign staff and agencies in Taipei
14 Aug 2009
Telegraph.co.uk

The typhoon destroyed the homes of 7,000 people and caused agricultural and property damage in excess of 50 billion New Taiwan dollars ($1.5 billion), Mr Ma said. More than 300 people are now presumed to have died in the remote Taiwanese village of Hsiao Lin that was buried in a landslide after Morakot struck last weekend, precipitating the worst floods on the island for 50 years. A total of 15,400 people have been rescued since Morakot dumped more than 80 inches (2 meters) of rain, the disaster relief centre said. More than 170 houses were destroyed in Hsiao Lin which is inhabited by the Pingpu tribe of aborigines and has an official population of 1,300, although a number of residents were thought to have been away seeking work in the city.

WFP To Increase Assistance to Southern Sudan
21 August 2009
World Food Program

The World Food Programme will dispatch more food to southern Sudan where 1.3 million people now need assistance. The World Food Programme plans to increase by 25 percent its food assistance distributed to Southern Sudan this year, to a total of 118,000 metric tonnes, because the number of people facing severe food shortages had now risen to 1.3 million. Conflict, poor rainfall and high food prices were identified as the ‘key shocks’ behind the worsening food security situation. “We need to act now to assist the increasing number of people facing serious hunger in southern Sudan,” says WFP Sudan Representative Kenro Oshidari, who attended a donors’ meeting in Juba on August 15, organized by the Government of Southern Sudan to appeal for assistance.

Athens locals flee as fires rage
BBC
August 23, 2009

Several thousand residents of Athens' northern suburbs have evacuated their homes as several wildfires continue to blaze around the Greek capital. Almost the entire population of Agios Stefanos, 23km (14 miles) north-east of Athens, fled by vehicle or on foot. Multiple fires have been burning across an area some 50km wide, fanned by strong and unpredictable winds. The fires – the worst since those in 2007 which killed about 70 people – are being called an environmental disaster. Firefighting efforts were suspended as darkness fell on Sunday, with several major blazes still burning into the night, although no casualties have been reported. Although the fires had reportedly retreated from the capital's suburbs and were burning mainly forest land, unpredictable winds meant populated areas were still at risk. "The constant shift in the wind's direction is rekindling the flames," fire brigade spokesman Giannis Kapakis told Reuters news agency. "We must all remain calm through this night."

Natural Disaster Update
Source: http://home.att.net/~thehessians/disasterwatch.html

QUAKES –

8/16/09 –
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.2 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.2 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.1 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.3 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
6.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.4 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.1 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
6.9 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.3 FIJI
5.2 PHILIPPINE ISLANDS REGION
5.0 KURIL ISLANDS
5.3 SOUTH OF KERMADEC ISLANDS

8/17/09 –
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.2 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.2 OFF W. COAST OF S. ISLAND, N.Z.
5.2 BOUGAINVILLE REGION, P.N.G
5.7 SOUTHWESTERN RYUKYU ISL., JAPAN
6.5 SOUTHWESTERN RYUKYU ISL., JAPAN
6.7 SOUTHWESTERN RYUKYU ISL., JAPAN

8/19/09 –
5.0 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.5 KEP. MENTAWAI REGION, INDONESIA
5.0 ASSAM, INDIA
5.0 TONGA

8/20/09 –
5.3 KEPULAUAN TALAUD, INDONESIA
5.3 SOUTHWESTERN RYUKYU ISL., JAPAN
5.0 MOLUCCA SEA
6.1 NORWEGIAN SEA

INDONESIA – Seven people were injured when the strong, 6.9-magnitude quake struck Indonesia's western Sumatra. "Five people were injured when an escalator at a mall in north Padang collapsed. Two others were hurt when the fences of their homes gave way. They had light injuries like abrasions on their arms and legs." There were no reports of casualties or damage on Siberut island. "But the residents there had fled to the mountains for safety." No tsunami warning had been issued. "It was a sea quake but there's no potential of tsunami. We'll only issue a warning if the magnitude is greater than seven." "People panicked in nearby cities, in Padang and Sibolga in Sumatra''.

NEVADA – An earthquake lab that reported a moderate jolt early Sunday in northern Nevada says it was an echo of a more distant quake halfway around the world. The Nevada Seismological Laboratory said Monday that its report of a magnitude 4.2 quake early Sunday near Rock House, close to the Idaho line, was false. The alert was automatically generated by the lab's instruments before any scientists had a chance to verify it. The Nevada instruments picked up amplified waves of a quake that occurred in Japan or Indonesia around the same time. Those instruments then incorrectly calculated the quake's location near Rock House.

TROPICAL STORMS –

Tropical Storm Claudette, the third of the Atlantic hurricane season, moved ashore along the U.S. Gulf coast early today. Claudette, which formed early Sunday morning, hit the coast near the eastern end of Santa Rosa Island, just southeast of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, at 1:10 a.m. EDT. The six-month Atlantic hurricane season got off to a slow start with no storms in the first 2-1/2 months but exploded this weekend as three formed in just over a day. Claudette had swept through the Gulf of Mexico but bypassed the heaviest concentration of U.S. energy platforms, which stretch along the coast from Mobile Bay, Alabama, to Brownsville, Texas. Oil companies were monitoring the storm but had not shut down production. Claudette packed sustained winds of 50 miles per hour (80 kilometers per hour) as it hit the Florida panhandle. Its center will cross the western portion of the panhandle and swirl into southern Alabama later in the day. Claudette will likely weaken to a tropical depression over Alabama later today.

Early today, Tropical Storm Ana, which had faded to a tropical depression on Sunday and was expected to weaken further, was west-northwest near 26 mph and was about 185 miles east-southeast of St. Croix. It was expected to rain 2 to 4 inches over the Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. and British Virgin islands.

The bigger threat could come from Bill, which forecasters expect to whip up into a "major" Category 3 hurricane, with winds of more than 110 mph, by Friday. Some computer models suggested Bill could reach Category 4, with winds of more than 130 mph. Bill's sustained winds increased on Sunday to 70 mph, just short of hurricane strength. Early today it was still 1,320 miles east of the Lesser Antilles islands. On its most likely track, Bill would be well north of the northernmost Caribbean islands, headed in the general direction of the U.S. East Coast, striking by Friday.

Florida's Gulf Coast dodged a bullet as surprise Tropical Storm Claudette came ashore early Monday morning. No damage, no injuries, no flooding and no road closures have been reported in Santa Rosa, Okaloosa or Walton counties. Even the portion of U.S. Highway 98 across Okaloosa Island notorious for flooding during the smallest of storms remained unscathed, except for a 30-foot stretch of the left eastbound lane where sand had gathered. Claudette formed suddenly in the Gulf of Mexico early Sunday morning, then hit just after midnight near Fort Walton Beach with winds approaching 50 mph. The storm dropped copious amounts of rain over the Florida Panhandle – Crestview received the most with 4.49 inches. Four people took advantage of an emergency storm shelter in Crestview but left after breakfast. The shelter was closed by 7 a.m. Monday. A few transformers sustained damage. The National Weather Service reported that isolated areas along the Gulf Coast could see 5-10 inches of rainfall Monday, but the normal count should fall between 3-5 inches.

Along the Florida Panhandle, a man in his mid-20s died after being pulled from the surf as Claudette approached Sunday. In Bay County, authorities searched for another man whose boat ran aground Sunday night, though they believe he eventually made it ashore.

Claudette surprised the Florida Coast; where did she come from?  – How is it possible Emerald Coast residents could go to bed Saturday night thinking Sunday would be just another summer day only to find a tropical storm knocking on their door the next morning? Well, it’s simple – and complicated. Weathermen had been expecting a wet weekend as far back as last Tuesday as a tropical wave headed west through the Florida Straits to a rendezvous with the Gulf of Mexico. “We thought it would bring some rain and gusty winds." What they didn’t expect, and what computer models still weren’t showing on Sunday, is that a “closed low” would form along the axis of the wave. “Atmospheric conditions were just right for a little low to form." That low “liked where it was sitting and spun up pretty quickly.” Waters over the northeast Gulf of Mexico are well above the minimum necessary for fueling a tropical storm, and wind shear was only 5-10 knots.

Remnants of Tropical Depression Ana are bringing heavy rains to Puerto Rico.

Tropical storm Vamco – The National Weather Service 2 am update this morning is reporting that Tropical Depression 11W has upgraded to a tropical storm status. However, no watches or warning are still in effect for the Marianas. The storm is less than 3 days from the Marianas Islands. The NWS is reporting that the storm is moving north-northwest at 7 mph. This general motion is expected to continue during the next 24 hours. 11W is expected to gradually intensify for the next 12 to 24 hours. Maximum sustained winds are 40 mph.

NOAA report reveals RECORD HIGH SEA TEMPERATURES – July set an all time record high for surface water temperatures AROUND THE WORLD, rising above the 1998 record by 1.06 degrees. The recent findings showed elevated temperatures not only for the sea but on land as well. The overall surface temperature for the Earth's oceans came in at 62.56 F degrees (16.63 C). Land temperatures saw a .92 F degree increase for a total of 58 F (14.81 C). This means a combined surface temperature on land and sea at 61.7 F degrees (15.65 C), came in as the fifth warmest July reported These are records based on data on the surface temperature which have been collected from around the world since 1880. These record breaking temperatures for July also follow record breaking temperatures for the month of June.

TAIWAN – Taiwan's leader says the military will make evacuations and rescue operations one of its main roles as extreme weather events such as Typhoon Morakot and climate change now pose a bigger threat. Ten days after the typhoon hit the island, President Ma Ying-jeou told a news conference that rescue operations had ended and the typhoon response had entered a new phase focused on disaster relief and resettlement. Ma has warned the death toll could climb to more than 500, with hundreds feared buried, while 128 people are so far confirmed dead. The president said he had already decided to create a national disaster prevention agency to take over crisis management, replacing the National Fire Agency, and that the military would do intensive disaster response training. "In the future the armed forces of this country will have disaster prevention and rescue as their MAIN job." The results of an investigation into where the government's response went wrong will be released next month. The deputy foreign minister has tendered his resignation over the ministry's decision to reject foreign aid immediately after the typhoon hit. Meanwhile, disaster relief continued with television footage showing US military heavy-lift helicopters airlifting excavation equipment destined for disaster-struck areas to help speed up road and bridge repairs. China was shipping 100 prefabricated houses to help with reconstruction efforts, the first in a batch of 1,000 homes worth 2.9 million US dollars. The 550-member military force has airlifted a total of 5,657 survivors to safety since rescue operations began. "Those who can be saved have been saved…Digging up the bodies will be our focus now. I have been to the Hsiaolin township, where they said some 400 bodies were buried in the mud. But it's almost impossible to recover the bodies because the mud was as high as 30 metres."

Thanks to RARE WEATHER CONDITIONS, Bill is expected to remain a major hurricane for an UNUSUALLY LONG stretch as it heads north on a course roughly parallel to the U.S. East Coast. Hurricanes don't typically remain major – with wind speeds of at least 111 miles (179 kilometers) an hour – after passing north of about the latitude of Cape Lookout, North Carolina. After this point cooler waters and other hurricane-suppressing conditions typically prevail. Bill's success is especially remarkable during a year notably unfriendly to Atlantic hurricanes, thanks mainly to the storm-disrupting effects of El Niño. El Niños are especially unkind to Cape Verde storms like Hurricane Bill, which have the entire ocean to cross before they reach the Americas. Despite the hurricane-unfriendly conditions, "oases of favorable conditions" can exist in the Atlantic Basin long enough to allow a powerful storm to form. Hurricane Bill seems to have found just such an oasis. By contrast, tropical storm Ana chugged into the Caribbean, where it ran into strong wind shear that tore the storm apart. Lucky Hurricane Bill's northerly storm track, though, intersected with a jet stream traveling in a similar direction as Bill's winds. That stream won't necessarily supercharge the hurricane, but it won't weaken it, as opposing winds would have. Right now, "conditions are somewhat more favorable for hurricane formation in the tropical eastern Atlantic than we typically see when there's an El Niño."

The National Hurricane Center's forecast had predicted Bill would remain an intense Category 4 hurricane through Saturday morning, when it's forecast to pass between Bermuda and the U.S. East Coast. Even if Bermuda doesn't suffer a direct hit, the island may be in for rough waves and swells. After that, Bill will probably weaken slightly as it takes a northeasterly turn, though the storm was expected to remain a major hurricane at least through Sunday, when it should pass offshore of New Jersey. That turn is expected to keep the hurricane well away from the U.S., though rip tides and strong waves are expected through the weekend.

Forecasters issued a tropical storm warning Thursday for the Atlantic island of Bermuda as Category 3 Hurricane Bill neared. Bill could regain Category 4 strength today. Large swells generated by Bill were affecting the northern Leeward Islands on Thursday, along with Puerto Rico and the island of Hispaniola, shared by Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Bill is forecast to diminish into a Category 1 hurricane by Sunday evening, when it could make landfall near Nova Scotia or Newfoundland, Canada. No storm of Category 3 intensity or stronger has hit Canada since recordkeeping began in 1851.

Swell from hurricane Bill will arrive along the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia early today. Swell heights near 2 m will generate rough surf and hazardous rip currents along some beaches. Breaking wave heights on the shoreline are expected to be from 2 to 3 m (7 to 10 feet) along the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia on Saturday. Residents are advised to exercise caution where large waves break onshore. Wave heights will further increase over Southern Nova Scotia and Newfoundland Sunday and Sunday night as Bill moves northeastward. Wave heights will be highest over areas south of Bill's track. Given the current forecast track southwest facing shorelines over the Avalon Peninsula of Newfoundland appear to be most vulnerable. Above average water levels could be a coastal flooding threat over areas where Bill's track coincides with astronically high tides. Bill is a very large category 3 hurricane with hurricane force winds extending up to 100 NM from the eye and gales extending up to 220 NM from the eye.

Typhoon Vamco is moving north over the Pacific Ocean, gradually building steam. At 00:05 UTC, on August 20, the storm had sustained winds of 195 kilometers per hour (120 miles per hour or 105 knots). Forecasters expected the typhoon to continue to strengthen into a Category 4 Super Typhoon by today. The storm is not expected to hit land. Vamco is well-formed. It has a small, distinctive eye defined by a wall of clouds. The bands of clouds that spiral out from the eye form a tight, symmetric circle, another sign of a powerful storm.

HEAVY RAINS / FLOODING / LANDSLIDES / UNUSUAL & OUT-OF-SEASON WEATHER –

SRI LANKA – Flash floods have inundated refugee camps in northern Sri Lanka, endangering more than 16,000 Tamil refugees who only months ago survived cross-fire in the country's two-decade civil war. Three days of heavy rains have damaged or destroyed nearly 2,000 shelters housing the refugees. An internal U.N. memo painted a dismal picture for the refugees, who have been caught in mud flows and the runoff from flooded latrines. The flooding came ahead of Sri Lanka's monsoon season, which typically brings heavy rains to the country's northeast from October till January. "If the rain continues, which is very likely, then the overall situation may go out of control of the management and lead to serious security threat." Human Rights Watch has called for the immediate release of Tamil civilians living in the camps, which are surrounded by barbed wire, saying they are being confined against their will, like criminals.

PAKISTAN – United Nations experts are warning of a possible food shortage in Pakistan’s northwest following widespread damage caused by flash floods that followed heavy monsoon rains. 27 people have died, with nine missing. Up to 450 homes were destroyed by the floods, along with a massive loss of crops and livestock. Local officials are reporting that some 80,000 people have been affected by the floods in the Swabi District, with officials declaring a state of emergency for a number of towns.

Wednesday’s Midwest strong storm system will sweep off to the east by Thursday and Friday. This storm is much bigger than Hurricane Bill. The large nature of this large west-east moving storm system (called a Mid-latitude Cyclone) is great news for the U.S. East Coast. Winds from this cyclone are potentially strong enough to steer Bill back out to sea, just at the time of Bill’s approach to the Northeast U.S. Coastline. It is not uncommon for a Mid-latitude Cyclones to steer hurricanes. At the same time though, the interaction between Bill and the west-east moving storm may help to strengthen the storm. The potentially joint storm may eventually become a concern for Nova Scotia, those at sea in the North Atlantic, and potentially U.S.-Europe air travel.

Powerful winds slammed parts of four Midwestern states on Wednesday, leaving behind shattered windows, toppled power lines and a handful of injuries. At least a half dozen suspected tornadoes were reported. The National Weather Service received reports of a possible tornado near downtown Minneapolis, where winds tore off part of a 90-year-old metal church steeple. Wisconsin, Iowa and Illinois were also hit, though the only confirmed tornado as of Wednesday night was in Hastings, about 30 miles southeast of Minneapolis, where a 100-yard-long swath of trees was flattened. It was the sort of storm that meteorologists dread – it didn't look dangerous until it was. "We worry about the really benign thunderstorm that develops a tornado in the metropolitan area. These sort-lived ones form very quickly and dissipate very fast. They are very hard to predict." In Minneapolis, at the Electric Fetus, a landmark independent music store near downtown, strong winds shattered one of the store's windows and caused the roof to cave in. [site note – this is only 8 miles east of me. On August 8 there was some  tornado damage 20 miles west of me and some 10 miles to the north of me. I'm being surrounded – yikes!]

TEXAS – A tornado swept through a southeast Texas shopping district without warning Tuesday, collapsing a department store roof, overturning vehicles and leaving several people in stores and parking lots with minor injuries. No serious injuries were reported, though one man went into cardiac arrest after the tornado touched down about 2 p.m. in Beaumont, about 87 miles east of Houston. The tornado hit a Kohl's Department Store – collapsing its roof – skipped over a Wal-Mart and continued on to Parkdale Mall, leaving a trail of destruction about a half-mile long. Bricks on exterior store walls were torn away, cars and trucks were flipped onto each other and parking lot cart corrals were bent and twisted. Forecasters hadn't expected a tornado because the storms moving through the area were relatively weak and there was little circulation to cause a funnel. "We are continuing to monitor the situation right now because this is REALLY RARE."

NEW YORK – More than 100 trees felled as freak 80mph gusts rip through half-mile wide section of Central Park. Central Park looked like the victim of a chainsaw attack Wednesday – hours after a FREAKISHLY POWERFUL thunderstorm roared through, uprooting or killing more than 100 trees. Gusts of up to 80mph felled another 50 trees in Riverside Park as the storm swept through the city just after 10 p.m. Tuesday. "This is the worst storm damage I've ever seen in Central Park going back 30 years." The damage in the park was contained to a half-mile-wide swath between 97th and 104th streets from the west to the east side of the park. "It looks like someone opened up with artillery fire, something you'd see in a war zone. Trees are shredded, some snapped in half 30 to 40 feet up; other trees are just completely uprooted…The landscape has changed forever." Trees in Thomas Jefferson Park in Harlem and on Randall's Island were also uprooted. Warm air mixing with a sudden cold front produced the ferocious weather system that passed quickly through the city dumping over a half-inch of rain and lighting up the sky with jagged bolts of lightning. The severe weather was mostly contained to Manhattan, the Bronx and northern Queens. Downed trees damaged more than a dozen cars parked along Riverside Drive. Six large trees fell across Riverside Drive, completely blocking the busy thoroughfare for hours.

Update on Wednesday's 2pm Minneapolis tornado – An upper-level disturbance, a counterclockwise-rotating swirl of UNUSUALLY COLD air 4-8 miles aloft sparked a widespread surge of rain, almost resembling an MCS, a meso-convective system, which tends to form at night, not during the day. Even though it was cool (upper 60s) there was enough instability, wind shear, and pure spin (vorticity) in the atmosphere to whip up brief, strong, "mesocyclones", rotating thunderstorms capable of hail and tornadoes. The cell that formed over South Minneapolis developed VERY quickly, by the time warnings were formally issued and the sirens were sounding the threat (from the S. Minneapolis tornado) was probably long gone. It was a signal that the atmosphere was explosively/dangerously unstable. Minutes later there was another touchdown near Cottage Grove, then later more tornadoes near Canon Falls, Mankato and North Branch. In all there may have been as many as 4-5 separate tornado touch downs on Wednesday. The Minneapolis tornado is making a lot of people very, very uncomfortable. It's one thing if a tornado forms over fields with little/no warning, but within 1 mile of the MSP International Airport and 1-2 miles from downtown Minneapolis? No watches or warnings were in effect at the time of the apparent touchdown. Everything the tornado sucked up over S. Minneapolis, it dropped right on the downtown area. A few years ago a study focused on Chicago, what might happen if a major, F3-F5 tornado struck during rush hour. The projections sounded like something out of a horror movie: 3,000 to 5,000 people dead, 20,000-50,000 locals injured, damage running into the BILLIONS of dollars. The report shook a lot of people up. A major tornado hitting a major city, especially at rush hour, with hundreds of thousands of commuters trapped in their cars, would be a catastrophe that would make Hurricane Katrina look like a proverbial walk in the park…a worst-case, long-lasting, violent tornado would leave behind a trail of damage and death that could dwarf the aftermath of a major hurricane.

AUSTRALIA – The State Emergency Service has received more than 400 calls for help as strong winds cause damage in parts of Victoria. Severe winds with a line of heavy showers and isolated thunderstorms have crossed Melbourne causing fallen trees, traffic disruptions and power outages. A large tree fell across tram and powerlines in Chapel Street, north of Dandenong Road, in Windsor, crushing a car. Train services on the Williamstown, Werribee and Upfield lines have been affected, after the strong winds brought trees down on power lines. Ski lifts have been closed at Falls Creek because wind gusts of up to 95kph. The worst affected areas have been the northern and eastern suburbs. More than 30,000 homes are without power in the metropolitan area. The worst of the weather is expected to clear by early afternoon. "We can still expect strong winds right through to around 1:00pm today. Most of the events that have occurred this morning have largely related to trees that have come down across roadways." It is very windy in the Alpine areas. "Up at Mt Buller from instance, they're getting average winds of 70 kilometres per hour, gusting up to around 109." Winds are gusting at up to 110kph at Mt Hotham.

EXTREME HEAT / WILDFIRES / DROUGHT / CLIMATE CHANGE-

WESTERN CANADIAN farmers are taking a financial beating, with thinning herds and poor crop yields as a result of persistent drought.

AUSTRALIA – in New South Wales, farmers are being warned the warmer weather is providing the ideal breeding conditions for a locust plague this spring. The central and north-west are currently the hotspots, but there are fears the pests will move south. The unseasonal conditions have fast-tracked the locust threat. "It has been UNUSUALLY WARM, so the initial forecast we had in terms of dates expected for hatching are expected to move forward."
Snowfalls down by 40 per cent over 50 years – Australian skiers may have to look overseas in search of suitable snowfalls, thanks to global warming. The average snow cover at Australia's highest altitude snow course, Spencer's Creek in the Snowy Mountains, has declined by 30% – 40% in the last 50 years. The cost of man-made snow is also likely to increase as more water and electricity are required. Specialised plants that have learnt to survive in the Australian highlands don't have the option of seeking out higher ground and may face extinction. "Some of these plants are found only on the lee side of mountain ridges, where snow lies late into the summer months, long after snow in the surrounding landscape has melted. We are about to lose two of our rarest plant communities, right before our eyes. We need to co-ordinate the ad hoc research that is happening on our limited snow country."

Climate change is melting America's glaciers at the FASTEST RATE IN RECORDED HISTORY, exposing the country to higher risks of drought and rising sea levels. The long-running study of three "benchmark" glaciers in Alaska and Washington state by the US geological survey indicated a sharp rise in the melt rate over the last 10 or 15 years. Scientists see the three – Wolverine and Gulkana in Alaska and South Cascade in Washington – as representative of thousands of other glaciers in North America. The survey found that all three glaciers had begun melting at the same higher rate – although they are in different climate regimes and some 1,500 miles apart. USGS researchers have been measuring the three glaciers for more than 50 years. Shrinking glaciers have led to a reduction in spring run-off which is intensifying the effects of drought in California and other states, especially later in the summer when other water sources dry up. Glacier loss has also contributed to rising sea levels, which has put low-lying coastal areas – such as New Orleans – at greater risk of storm surges.

Is our planet geo-engineering with jellyfish to slow climate change? – Perhaps some good is coming of the ever-increasing jellyfish implosion being reported worldwide. It turns out, jellyfish may be working to save us from our excesses. The massive new blooms of jellyfish might be burying more carbon dioxide deep under the ocean by pumping cold water to the surface with every meal. When they return, they ferry CO2-laden warm water down into the depths of the sea. In the process, they may be changing the overall carbon balance in the atmosphere. The finding is the latest in a decades-old debate over whether swimming animals have much effect on ocean mixing, the process by which warm water on the surface combines with the cold water far below. Rather like the way a bicyclist drags air behind him; jellyfish drag water behind them as they swim. Research filming shows just how much cool deep water they stir up with them in the process and how much surface water they are taking down. "Now it’s as if the planet itself is joining human inventors of massive geo-engineering solutions in using a huge planetary pump from a (possibly climate-related) jellyfish implosion as in order to sequester carbon deep under the ocean."

BRITAIN – Warm weather has led a rare spring butterfly to produce a second brood this year. It is ONLY THE THIRD TIME IN 100 YEARS that the orange and brown Duke of Burgundy has been seen in late summer. Conservationists spotted the butterfly at Rodborough Common in Gloucestershire. The National Trust puts it down to warm weather in late May and early June, and again in late June and early July. "It's increasingly likely we'll see more second broods in the coming years as our climate gets warmer."

ALASKA – The U.S. Coast Guard says climate change is opening up new waters off Alaska's coast, meaning shipping vessels and fishermen are entering channels where only icebreakers once dared. There were just 34 vessel dockings in 1990 and this past year there were 234. Locals say the increased melting is starting to impact ecosystems along the coast. Insects are starting to show up in places they haven't previously been seen before. Fall storms are more frequent, crippling the transportation system and causing erosion.

AUSTRALIA – Forecasters are predicting RECORD-BREAKING AUGUST TEMPERATURES, right in time for several major Gold Coast events, including the World Transplant Games. They say the temperature will reach a near record 28C Saturday, before dropping off slightly on Sunday to about 26C, and then hitting a sizzling, RECORD-BREAKING 30C on Monday. The August record, based on data going back to the 1980s, was set in 2007 at 28.5C. "It all depends on individual weather systems and at the moment we have been under the influence of a high-pressure system which means clear days, fine weather conditions and warm winds from the northeast to northwest." Coasters will begin seeing summer insects earlier this year, given the higher-than-normal temperatures the city is experiencing. Butterfly, moth, grasshopper and midge populations would start to become evident as the weather warmed up.

OREGON – Wednesday's sizzling temperatures BROKE A 70-YEAR-OLD RECORD for the Roseburg area. The mercury rose to 105 degrees Wednesday for the second straight day of record-setting heat. The previous record for that day was 101 degrees set in 1939. In the last several weeks, Roseburg has BROKEN THREE OTHER HOT WEATHER RECORDS. Tuesday's high temperature of 100 degrees just barely beat the previous high of 99 degrees. On July 28, the scorching 108-degree high broke the past record and nearly met the all-time high of 109 degrees. Roseburg also set a record July 29 with a 106-degree reading.

GREECE – Gale-force winds fanned more than 50 blazes across Greece. A wildfire raged close to a village near the Greek capital Athens, sending people fleeing from their homes and workplaces and damaging buildings. More than 100 fire fighters with 25 fire engines and five helicopters battled the flames in an industrial area near Magoula, about 20km northwest of Athens, while strong winds fanned the blaze. "There are strong winds in the area. We are concerned because the fire is raging near factory warehouses." Another fire burning in central Greece, near the town of Astakos, had damaged at least two houses. Wildfires are frequent in Greece during the summer, often caused by high temperatures, drought or arson. Hundreds of fires have scorched swathes of forest land across the country since the beginning of August. Greece saw its deadliest wildfires in memory in 2007, when blazes on the island of Evia and the southern Peloponnese peninsula raged for more than 10 days, sweeping through dozens of villages and killing 65 people.

FOOD / WATER / SUPPLIES-

Water crisis to hit Asian food – Scientists have warned Asian countries that they face chronic food shortages and likely social unrest if they do not improve water management. They say countries in south and east Asia must spend billions of dollars to improve antiquated crop irrigation to cope with rapid population increases. That estimate does not yet take into account the possible impact of global warming on water supplies. Asia's population is forecast to increase by 1.5 billion people over the next 40 years. Asian countries will need to import more than a quarter of their rice and other staples to feed their populations. Asia's food and feed demand is expected to double by 2050. "The best bet for Asia lies in revitalising its vast irrigation systems, which account for 70% of the world's total irrigated land…Without water productivity gains, south Asia would need 57% more water for irrigated agriculture and east Asia 70% more. Given the scarcity of land and water, and growing water needs for cities, such a scenario is untenable." The scenarios forecast do not factor in the impact of global warming, which will likely make rainfall more erratic and less plentiful in some agricultural regions over the coming decades.

A new rice plant has been developed which grows "snorkels" when exposed to floods. The plant elongates rapidly in response to being submerged. "The impact is huge". It could boost the production of rice in Asia and Africa, where up to 40% of crops are subject to flash floods or deep water. "People cannot plant any crops in the rainy season, because the crops drown and die in the floods." Japanese scientists discovered the "snorkel" genes in flood-tolerant rice, and introduced them to more sensitive high-yield rice. "Snorkels" grow as hollow tubes from parts of the plant called internodes, preventing it from drowning. When the floods arrive, the super rice plants can grow up to 25cm per day.

HEALTH THREATS –

UK expert panel urged against prescribing Tamiflu by phone – In launching its system to diagnose H1N1 flu and prescribe oseltamivir by phone, the British government rejected an advisory committee's advice that the practice might engender growing resistance to the drug. Officials judged that the public would not tolerate being told that the national stockpile could not be used. The advisory panel said the drug should be reserved for people in the high-risk group.

England's Health Protection Agency has sent a letter to neurologists asking them to be alert for any increase in Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) cases after the public starts receiving the novel H1N1 vaccine. The letter warns of GBS cases that occurred in the wake of the 1976 US swine flu vaccine campaign.

Egyptian pilgrims protest travel ban – About 300 people staged a protest at Cairo's airport Sunday to oppose an Egyptian government restriction that bars them from traveling to Mecca on pilgrimage. Airport security dispersed the crowd. The travel ban is intended to slow the spread of the pandemic H1N1 virus. Only travelers between ages 25 and 65, a group thought to be at lower risk for flu, are being allowed to make the trip to Mecca.

H1N1 vaccine orders in northern hemisphere top 1 billion doses – A few countries, such as Greece, Canada, and Israel, have ordered enough doses to cover their whole populations, while others, including the United States, have ordered less.

Australian doctors question country's vaccination plans – Australia's major infectious disease society is questioning the safety of the country's novel H1N1 vaccination plans. In a letter to the government, the Australasian Society for Infectious Diseases cited a risk of cross-contamination when using multidose vials and said the flu epidemic has subsided, so the campaign needn't be rushed. A spokeswoman for vaccine maker CSL countered that the single-dose approach would be slower and more expensive.

More than 60% of Americans say they are not worried about the novel H1N1 flu, but 55% plan to get the H1N1 vaccine for themselves or someone in their household. A poll indicates that about one in eight Americans is very worried that the pandemic will affect his or her family, while twice as many are not at all worried. Nearly 75% were confident that the government will be able to cope effectively with the epidemic.

Many British firms have had H1N1-related absences – In a survey of 429 small and medium-size British companies, 72% said they had weathered staff absenteeism because of the H1N1 flu and 38% expected that their sales would suffer. The survey also found that one in five businesses said they expected to have to close or partially close premises, and 87% said they had introduced new sanitation measures to combat the virus.

Healthy people who catch swine flu don't need antiviral drugs like Tamiflu, says the World Health Organization.

Deaths from H1N1 flu in Latin America, the world's hardest-hit region, have reached 1,303, more than 70% of the global total of 1,799. Argentina has had 404 deaths, the second-highest toll after the United States' 477, and Brazil has 368. Trailing Brazil are Mexico, with 164 deaths; Chile, 105; and Peru, 62.

Signs in False Shepherds & False Religion
"For among them are those who worm their way into households and capture idle women burdened down with sins, led along by a variety of passions, always learning and never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so these also resist the truth, men who are corrupt in mind, worthless in regard to the faith. But they will not make further progress, for their lack of understanding will be clear to all, as theirs was also." 2 Timothy 3:6-9

Lutheran church to allow gay clergy, couples
Doctrine change may cleave denomination
Washington Times
By Julia Duin
August 22, 2009

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America passed several resolutions Friday that recognize committed gay relationships and, for the first time, permit non-celibate homosexuals to be Lutheran clergy. The resolution on clergy, easily the most controversial, passed by 559 "yes" votes (55.3 percent) to 451 "no" votes (44.6 percent). It committed the ELCA to open its clergy ranks to people in "publicly accountable, lifelong, monogamous, same-gender relationships." Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson asked for silence and prayer for several minutes after the historic vote. A klatch of female pastors, several of them lesbians, who were standing in the rear of the cavernous assembly hall at the Minneapolis Convention Center dissolved into tears. "I feel a tremendous amount of joy and a tremendous amount of pain," confessed the Rev. Jenny Mason, a St. Paul cleric who said she was ejected from the official list of ELCA "rostered" clergy in 2001 for having a same-sex lover. "This means our church can move forward and practice this welcome" toward gays.

U.S. Jews tell Catholics: We won't accept Christ as savior
By The Associated Press
Mon., August 24, 2009

Major Jewish groups and rabbis from the three largest branches of American Judaism said Thursday that their relationship with Roman Catholic leaders is at risk because of a recent U.S. bishops' statement on salvation. Jewish groups said they interpret the new document to mean that the bishops view interfaith dialogue as a chance to invite Jews to become Catholic. The Jewish leaders said they "pose no objection" to Christians sharing their faith, but said dialogue with Jews becomes "untenable" if the goal is to persuade Jews to accept Christ as their savior. "A declaration of this sort is antithetical to the very essence of Jewish-Christian dialogue as we have understood it," Jewish leaders said in a letter to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The signers were the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee and rabbis representing the Orthodox, Conservative and Reform movements. The statement fueling the tension was issued by the bishops in June to clarify a 2002 document called "Covenant and Mission." The bishops said the earlier document mistakenly played down the importance of sharing the Gospel and was therefore misleading.

Iraqi militias torturing, killing gay men in name of religion – HRW report
By Dalila Mahdawi
Daily Star staff
Tuesday, August 18, 2009

BEIRUT: Iraqi militias are reportedly killing and torturing gay or effeminate men in a climate of impunity and even collusion with the Iraqi security services, a leading international rights group said in Beirut on Monday. In a report released in Beirut entitled, “‘They Want Us Exterminated’: Murder, Torture, Sexual Orientation and Gender in Iraq,” Human Rights Watch (HRW) detailed over 50 cases of extrajudicial killings, kidnapping, torture and terrorizing of gay men since the start of 2009. The 67-page report documents a campaign of violence against men in Iraq “who are suspected of being gay or who simply do not act masculine enough in the eyes of their killers,” Scott Long, director of HRW’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Program told reporters. According to the report, gay men or effeminate men in Iraq have been targeted since the ascendency of religious militias following the US-led occupation of Iraq in 2003. The killings and torture have mainly been pinned on members of the Mehdi Army, a Shiite militia that is also accused of attacking women for not wearing the Islamic veil, working outside the home or for wearing make-up. “The most trivial details of appearance – the length of a man’s hair, the fit of his clothes – could determine whether he lived or died,” the report found.

Newsweek says "We Are All Hindus Now"
Big News Network
Sunday 23rd August, 2009

Nevada (US), Aug.18 : "We Are All Hindus Now"-headlines the article in the upcoming edition of prestigious newsmagazine "Newsweek", saying "U.S. Views on God and Life Are Turning Hindu". Written by its religion editor Lisa Miller, it says, "…recent poll data show that conceptually, at least, we are slowly becoming more like Hindus and less like traditional Christians in the ways we think about God, our selves, each other, and eternity." Commenting about the Newsweek viewpoint, Rajan Zed said that community was glad that rich philosophical thought of Hinduism was being recognized and accepted widely outside the Hindu circles. The article quotes a religion professor at Boston University who has long framed the American propensity for "the divine-deli-cafeteria religion" as "very much in the spirit of Hinduism…" It further says: "So here is another way in which Americans are becoming more Hindu: 24 percent of Americans say they believe in reincarnation, according to a 2008 Harris poll. So agnostic are we about the ultimate fates of our bodies that we're burning them-like Hindus-after death. More than a third of Americans now choose cremation, according to the Cremation Association of North America." The article ends with: So let us all say "om."

Ayatollah sees global Islamic 'Mahdi' army
Calls for Muslim nations to unite militarily under messianic figure
Posted: August 17, 2009
9:18 pm Eastern
© 2009 WorldNetDaily

WASHINGTON – Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei yesterday called on Muslim nations around the world to unite militarily in response to the imminent coming of Islam's messianic savior – the Mahdi. Khamenei, through his spokesman Ali Saeedi, specifically beckoned the nations of Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon, Pakistan and Afghanistan to join together with Iran in preparation for the Mahdi's soon coming. The purpose of uniting now, a report in Al Arabiya explained, is to fight Israel and the U.S. – seen as the two greatest obstacles to the coming of the Mahdi and the age of Islamic "justice" that would ensue. "We have to train honest forces that can stop the obstacles that may hinder the coming of the Mahdi like the United States and Israel," Saeedi stated. Saeedi also emphasized that the Iranian revolutionary guard possessed a special religious authority to prepare the way for the Mahdi. Iran also recently concluded its fifth Annual Conference on Mahdism doctrine in the Iranian city of Qom, from which Shi'a Muslims believe the Mahdi will emerge.

Faith under Fire
“Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and falsely say every kind of evil against you because of me. Be glad and rejoice, because your reward is great in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”  Matthew 5:11-12

“You will be hated by everyone because of my name. But the one who endured to the end will be delivered.” Matthew 10:22

Pakistani Christians Forced into Refugee Camps
By Joseph Keenan
CP South and Southeast Asia Correspondent
Sat, Aug. 15 2009 05:14 PM EDT

Far away from Gojra, where a Muslim mob recently killed eight Christians, in the heart of Islamabad, about 2,000 Pakistani Christians are “forced to live in a refugee camp.” Their only crime is that they are Christians. Among the displaced Christians, two have already died due to poor hygiene. The displaced Christians told CNN correspondents, who visited them recently, that the government had kicked them off their land without warning only because they are Christian. However, the government has told a different story, saying that they were given plenty of warning. Moreover, the government said they will take care of this problem, which they claim they are well aware of. “We are constitutionally bound to protect the life and property of the minorities and to look after the interests of the minorities in this country," Shahbaz Bhatti, the minister of minority affairs and a Pakistani Christian, said, according to CNN. “Because they played a role in the founding, they are equal citizens of the country. Yes, there is a problem, but we are trying to solve those problems.”

Bus Driver Suspended Over Refusal to Drive with Atheist Ad
By Lawrence D. Jones
Christian Post Reporter
Thu, Aug. 20 2009 11:48 PM EDT

The Des Moines Regional Transit Authority in Iowa has suspended an employee who refused to drive a bus that carried an ad for an atheist group. Angela Shiel, 41, was suspended on Monday after she refused to drive a bus that featured on its side an ad paid for by the Iowa Atheists & Freethinkers. The ad reads "Don't believe in God? You are not alone." According to the Des Moines Register, Shiel said driving with such an ad "goes against everything I believe in." "For me to drive a bus that is totally against my beliefs personally – that's why I didn't take it," she added.

Christian Convert Allowed to Stay in FL for Now
CBN
Saturday, August 22, 2009

An Ohio teen who ran away to Florida in fear of her family after converting from Islam to Chritianity will be allowed to stay in the state for now. A Florida judge ruled, Friday, that 17-year-old Rifqa Bary can stay in foster care there until another hearing on her case is held Sept. 3. Bary says that if she's forced to return to her family in Ohio, she could be the victim of an honor killing, and if she's sent back to her native country of Sri Lanka she could face abuse and death as an infidel. "This is just not some threat," the 17-year-old warned with tears in her eyes. "This is truth. This is reality." Bary has been a Christian for four years, but fled from Ohio a few months ago, claiming physical threats from her family because she left Islam. She took a bus to Florida where she was taken in by the family of an evangelical pastor. Now, her Muslim family wants her back.

2,000 displaced Christians living in tents in Islamabad
BigNews Network
Sunday 23rd August, 2009

Islamabad, Aug 17: Nearly 2,000 Christians are living in tents here for the past three months, and most of them claim the Government has evicted them off their lands without warning, citing their religion. According to a report, people are dying of poverty and their living conditions are said to be quite pathetic. "I think there's a danger here, especially with some of the younger children, that they could just die from dehydration or from all kinds of infections," The Daily Times quoted Dr Rizwan Taj, as saying. "I am very surprised, really because this is the centre of Islamabad, just right in the centre. And the facilities they need are not but 10 minutes from here," he added.

A Christian on the run in Egypt
Maher El Gohary is something his Muslim compatriots can't fathom: a convert to Christianity. He and his daughter live like fugitives, moving frequently to avoid those who'd like to see him dead.
LA Times
By Jeffrey Fleishman
August 23, 2009

Reporting from Alexandria, Egypt – It is a clear day along the coast, but in a bungalow off the beach, Maher El Gohary sits behind a locked door with an open Bible and a crystal cross, suspicious of every voice and sandal scraping past outside. He and his daughter, Dina, live like refugees, switching apartments every few months, not wanting to get close to neighbors. Gohary's life has been threatened, his dogs have been killed, and it's been suggested that he's insane or possessed by spirits. He is a man this Muslim nation cannot fathom: a convert to Christianity. "Islam is the only thing Egyptians are 150% sure of. If you reject Islam, you shake their belief and you are an apostate, an infidel," he says. "I can see in the eyes of Muslims how much my conversion has really hurt them."

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