I’m still pondering over the comments of Bishop Carlton Pearson and Deepak Chopra on last week’s Nightline Face-off – Does Satan Exist? (see an interesting excerpt below). By the way, neither believe Satan exists… Bishop Pearson isn’t new to sharing controversial thoughts as a Christian minister and is joined in the spotlight by Minister Ann Holmes Redding (her story is below). Ms. Redding was recently removed from ministry or defrocked because she has also become a Muslim, though she feels there is no conflict. It makes me question whether religious thoughts are finally merging because people are becoming more enlightened. However, I’m sure some would say that both Pearson and Redding are just blinded. What do you think?
SEATTLE, Washington (CNN)— Ann Holmes Redding has what could be called a crisis of faiths.
For nearly 30 years, Redding has been an ordained minister in the Episcopal Church. Her priesthood ended Wednesday when she was defrocked.
The reason? For the past three years Redding has been both a practicing Christian and a Muslim.
“Had anyone told me in February 2006 that I would be a Muslim before April rolled around, I would have shaken my head in concern for the person’s mental health,” Redding recently told a crowd at a signing for a book she co-authored on religion.
Redding said her conversion to Islam was sparked by an interfaith gathering she attended three years ago. During the meeting, an imam demonstrated Muslim chants and meditation to the group. Redding said the beauty of the moment and the imam’s humbleness before God stuck with her.
“It was much more this overwhelming conviction that I needed to surrender to God and this was the form that my surrender needed to take,” she recalled. “It wasn’t just an episode but …. was a step that I wasn’t going to step back from.”
Ten days later Redding was saying the shahada — the Muslim declaration of belief in the oneness of God and acceptance of Mohammad as his prophet.
But Redding said she felt her new Muslim faith did not pose a contradiction to her staying a Christian and minister.
“Both religions say there’s only one God,” Redding said, “and that God is the same God. It’s very clear we are talking about the same God! So I haven’t shifted my allegiance.”
The imam at the Islamic Center in Seattle, Washington, where Redding prays said she brings the best of both traditions to her beliefs. Continue reading
Juan Williams’ recent comments on the O’Reilly Factor regarding Michelle Obama were quite disturbing. Among other things, he stated that Michelle is basically a liability to Barack, her instinct is to blame America and play the victim, and likened her to Stockley Carmichael in a dress. This morning in an interview on the Tom Joyner Morning Show, Roland Martin and Cybil Wilkes tried, unsuccessfully, to get him to see the damage he’s doing by making such comments. I thought they were being too polite (though I can tell Cybil was ready to go there), but I understand… Wow, how much do you really hate yourself Juan??? This disturbs me so much as we’re just coming off a beautiful inauguration celebration and appreciation for the loving black families that don’t get this type of spotlight. I agree with the analysis provided by News Hounds, even about Bill O’Reilly’s blamelessness in the whole matter. Let me add that I am not a fan of Juan Williams and would be quite careful about paying attention to any of his criticism of women given his sexual harassment charges back in the day at The Washington Post. Yes, Michelle is strong but that it not synonymous with angry, militant, or a liability. In Michelle Obama I see a strong, loving, supportive woman that is appreciated by her strong, loving, supportive husband as his partner in life. Sounds like someone has mommy issues…
This just about made me cry. Enjoy and tell us what you think!
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I’ve seen that phrase on a T-shirt and there’s even a song about it, but those words have been ringing in my head since even before I noticed these things. I was excited on election night when Obama officially won (did cartwheels in the street to prove it), but admittedly, it didn’t fully sink in that we had just elected the first Black President (unless you count Lincoln and we’re not discussing that in this particular post…lol). Those words are the reason that I was willing to make an almost three hour trip, that normally takes 20 minutes, to the mall to witness the swearing in of our 44th President. Yes, he is the President of the United States of America which includes people of all races, religions, and preferences. However, I need to have my moment as a black person to scream so loud that the ancestors hear and feel me, “My President is Black“!!!! (pause for a cartwheel in my office) Leading up to the Inauguration, I could feel something in my soul rising. I look in the eyes of my black male relatives and friends and I now notice a real pride and ease that I’d never seen previously. I watch them mark his every move , scrutinize every word, and even admire his cool stroll and see themselves and know that they’re alright, more than that even. I listen at myself and female family and friends marvel at Michelle for being the bad woman that she is without apology . Us single girls joke that we’re just a Michelle waiting to meet our Barack. To quote 107 year old Mrs. Ann Nixon Cooper, I feel more like a real person. It’s a validation that I tried not to need, but obviously can’t deny. Before the eyes of the world is a story of struggle, ambitions, black love, family, and hope with a happy beginning and expectations for a great ending. I can tell my children (or at least my niece) of a real story of possibility where the characters look like them. That’s a hard concept to sell to people who don’t have that issue. All these feelings overflowed during yesterday’s ceremony. Rick Warren, Dianne Feinstein, and President Obama himself all spoke of the significance of his presidency in light of America’s racist past. I enjoyed Aretha taking My Country Tis of Thee to church, but in my heart I wanted to sing the black national anthem, Lift Every Voice and Sing, at the top of my lungs and wouldn’t have even frowned on a praise break…lol. Rev. Joseph Lowery gave me a little of what I needed and while concluding his benediction let out a little ‘My President is Black’ pride of his own at the end of his speech. I understand Rev… I think there may be quite a few similar expressions of irrepressible pride as time goes on. All those that feel me scream, “My President is Black!!!!” (I hear you Jay-Z!)
I’ve been on vacation since Obama won, but I’m now ready to be inserted back into the matrix. Below is one of my favorite videos for when I need a good laugh. I apologize in advance to those that might take offense. The first minute and a half is priceless…ashondo…
So far, this is the only clip I’ve found about the party in DC last night/this morning. The clip doesn’t really do justice to what happened out there. Yes, we were there early this morning like we didn’t have to go to work, but we HAD to be there. Obama’s win was way too big to go to bed and just be satisfied with reading about it the next day. There were fireworks, people in the streets, people beating on drums, lots of dancing with random strangers, and okay, I did a cartwheel in the middle of the street… Even the bus drivers were honking a funky beat as they drove down the streets. U Street in DC was like a parade. All I can say is that the Inauguration parties will be CRAZY…think mardi gras.
Filed under black history, change, chocolate city, community, dancing, good times, government, history, love, music, obama, politics, video, washington dc