Exorcisms avoided at Lambeth — but schism?

THE last time I was at a Lambeth Conference, in 1998, I was about three feet from the action when the Nigerian Bishop Emmanuel Chukwuma told the Revd Richard Kirker that the Bible prescribed stoning for his sort and then tried to exorcise him. So I can see that the Anglican Communion has made progress since then. It’s harder for non-specialists to grasp this subtle point.

A conference without a single bishop attempting to exorcise another in front of the television cameras is a low bar to clear, even if Archbishop Welby cleared it handily. Who can know whether this is due to the presence of the Holy Spirit or the absence of Nigerian bishops?

Fifty or so African bishops sitting, stone-faced and with folded arms, when invited to the eucharist would have made less impressive television even if the cameras had been allowed. They shocked my informant among the bishops, though.

While the consensus in the church press seemed to be that Archbishop Welby had managed to finesse the schism; from the outside, not so much.

Sandi Toksvig’s letter to the Archbishop denouncing the reassertion of Lambeth 1.10 got a lot of play; so did his elegant return of service, offering her coffee at Lambeth Palace. This was brave. I am not sure that even his considerable charm can overcome the impact on an unbeliever of church coffee.

Not everyone was impressed by Ms Toksvig. Gareth Roberts, in The Spectator, most certainly wasn’t: “St Sandi’s letter to the Cantabrians is a masterpiece of faux-chummy passive-aggression, gratingly twee and self-satisfied. She addresses Welby as ‘Justin’ throughout (I am grateful that we were at least spared her saying ‘Archbish’), and it’s written in an unbearable jolly, golly-gosh, niminy-piminy, ‘cave girls, it’s Matron!’ vernacular. Just nice old Sandi asking the old A of C for a chin-wobble over a mug of froth. I am both an atheist and a homosexual of long standing, and I found it insufferable.”

Matthew Parris, in The Times, summed up the view of the generally benevolent section of the British public: “Within the English Church, ‘walking together’ is now the path of avoidance. We gays are done with all that ‘feeling your pain’ business. We feel no pain about being gay. We do feel pain about Welby’s evasion. Gay people in this country don’t need shoulders to cry on. That was 1980. This is 2022. There is nothing more to explain, nothing to discuss, nothing to ‘understand’ and no need for sympathy. Simple respect is what’s missing from the Church.

“There was something elemental, something stirring about Toksvig’s rage. Jesus’s kicking over the money-changers’ tables in the temple comes to mind. Blind fury in a just cause has its place, and the Lambeth Conference last week has brought us to that place. . . Banning the celebration of same-sex unions is an insult to the whole of England.”

One indication of the width of the schism is that the English commentary dealt exclusively with the matter of same-sex weddings in churches. The idea that the Church might be trying to ban gay sex altogether was too far-fetched to consider.


THE most revealing thing written about the Archie Battersbee case (Press, 5 August) came from Dr Rachel Clarke, in The Guardian: “If a person’s brain stem has died – for instance, through prolonged lack of oxygen — their body can only be kept alive with artificial life support; breathing only occurs because mechanical ventilators, invented in the 1950s, forcibly push air in and out of the lungs.

“Mechanical ventilation enables time for the staggeringly altruistic gift of organ donation. Yet it also generates the immensely painful and bewildering experience for some families of seeing their loved one apparently asleep — chest rhythmically rising and falling — only to be told that they have died.”

The material put out by Christian Concern, meanwhile, continued to show that the first casualty of spiritual warfare is truth.


WHILE on the subject of fake news, one of the masters of the form, the American radio host and internet personality Alex Jones may finally have got his just come-uppance. A jury in Texas awarded nearly $50 million in damages to the parents of one of the 20 children killed in the Sandy Hook primary-school shooting in 2012. Other lawsuits are pending. Mr Jones had accused them repeatedly of being “crisis actors”, hired by the gun-control lobby to pretend to have been bereaved in a massacre that, he said, never happened. This kind of lying has made him a fortune estimated at nearly half a billion dollars. Documents accidentally released by his lawyer shows that advertising on his show can make him up to $800,000 a day.

Hugo Rifkind, in The Times, wrote that “online disinformation is less about liars than it is about believers. And when somebody has gone wrong, I also learnt, it is no use to tell them the truth. For they don’t want the truth. They want the belief. And they will find a way to keep it.”

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Music reflects Gippsland glory | Gippsland Times

GIPPSLAND folk artist Harry Hookey (aka harry hook is real), has partnered with Visit Victoria and Music Victoria to soundtrack the region through a playlist featuring local music artists.

The initiative celebrates Victoria’s talented musicians and performing arts culture. It is supported by Visit Victoria’s ‘Stay close, go further’ campaign, encouraging Victorians to turn the music up, hit the road less travelled and explore more of what the state has to offer.

Mr Hookey, who grew up in Cowwarr and now resides in Sale, was given the opportunity to curate for the Gippsland playlist.

“Visit Victoria contacted me and they were looking for a musical bend to local tourism,” Mr Hookey said.

“They wanted songs to road trip to when you come through Gippsland. They asked for my pick of places I love here and music to go along with it. It’s pairing music with scenery.

“The brief was that it had to be Victorian artists. I’ve chosen mainly Gippsland artists themselves or artists that have been inspired by the region.”

Paul Kelly and Archie Roach appear on the playlist, who have songs inspired by Gippsland.

“Archie Roach travelled through Gippsland a lot, I think in the early days,” Mr Hookey said.

“It’s an honour to be asked to do this playlist. Gippsland is a great place to visit, and even for locals, there’s so much to see on a road trip.”

Other artists on the playlist include Machine Translations, Elly Poletti, Kutcha Edwards, Michael Waugh, Two Last Names, Bumpy, Janie Gordon, The Spaghetti Stains and Olivia Lay.

“Gippslanders are an unexpectedly diverse bunch, united by the natural wonder of the place they call home,” Mr Hookey said.

“This place is big, mountains-to-sea big, and ancient, culturally and ecologically ancient. I have chosen an eclectic bunch of songs by eclectic Gippslanders or people inspired by Gippsland that meander through the broad spectrum of emotions you can feel in a place this big and this ancient.

“I don’t like stuff that’s all the same, I like versatility. It’s a perfect road trip playlist.”

The initiative celebrates Victoria’s talented musicians and performing arts culture.

Visit Victoria chief executive Brendan McClements said the collaboration was an excellent way to bring the regions and their diversity to life.

“Each of Victoria’s regions is distinct in culture, landscape and creativity, we’re encouraging Victorians to jump in the car, drive somewhere new and be inspired by our regional sounds,” he said.

Music Victoria chief executive Simone Schinkel said she was delighted with the outcome.

“It’s been a real collaboration that manages to bring to life all that is special about the state – the people, the places and the music,” she said.

“With so much local talent here in Victoria, why would you look anywhere else?”

Mr Hookey, who also performs in the band Desert Alien, says that Gippsland is a great place to write songs.

“You can’t go past the scenery. The magnitude of the place, there’s something very freeing about the big open sky, the mountains, the ocean. It helps the spirit open up,” he said.

“I like that Gippsland is a musical blank campus. You wouldn’t say there’s one defining feature of Gippsland music. I know people who do hip-hop, one does classical and another does grunge stuff. I like that diversity.”

Mr Hookey is working on an album that he aims to release in October as harry hook is real.

The other five playlists feature Melbourne, the Murray, Grampians, High Country and the Great Ocean Road. All six playlists were launched on World Music Day and are available via Music Victoria’s Spotify and via

Check out the full playlist on Spotify.

Harry shows us around Gippsland

HERE are Harry’s top spots to check out in Gippsland, plus the best music on the local scene.

1. Tarra Bulga National Park

As my kids describe it, Tarra Bulga is our very own Jurassic Park. It’s an ancient rainforest, lush all year round, and home to the consummate lyrebird who can (and will) mimic near any sound. Be sure to stop in at the Tarra-Bulga Guest House in Balook for a great feast by firelight and some terrific cocktails, fuelled by local Gippsland liquor.

2. Walhalla

It’s no coincidence that this place was named after Viking heaven. I’d be quite happy to wind up here. In 1860, Walhalla’s population was 4000, thanks to gold fever. Now the permanent population is about 20. I’m talking Australia’s most picturesque cemetery, spooky ghost tours, and a trip that will take you 200 metres into the belly of a mountain. Be sure to bring your footy and have a kick at Australia’s highest altitude oval, too.

Harry Hookey

3. The Gippsland Lakes

There’s something unique about the water in the Gippsland Lakes. The colours, especially at dawn or twilight, would blow Monet’s mind. Just ask Brendan Sims – he’s an artist friend of mine and has painted the lakes exclusively for the last 40 years. The lake system is expansive and you can’t really go wrong anywhere, but the views around Paynesville and Raymond Island at twilight are particularly enchanting. Also try Marley Point or Lake Tyers at dawn. Why not hire a Bulls cruiser and just explore them afloat?

4. Live Music

If you’re in Gippsland on a Saturday night, you need to check out one of our great live music venues. Heading east? The Waterwheel Beach Tavern is an iconic venue, right on the edge of Lake Tyers. In the heartland? Live at the Bundy is an old country hall just outside Sale, which has been decked out with state-of-the-art PA. Down south? Archies Creek Hotel is a great music venue with an eclectic roster. I played a gig at the Regent Theatre in Yarram recently and it’s a beautiful old place. Yarram’s a great old town and a pleasant surprise for anyone who drives through and checks out the murals.

5. Gippsland Art Gallery

Behind the heritage-listed brutalist exterior of the Port of Sale building on Sale’s main drag, you’ll find the visionary Gippsland Art Gallery. It’s got Gippsland’s greatest paintings, sculptures, textiles and prints, as well as some of the nation’s best touring exhibitions. Make sure to come back regularly, because the exhibitions are always changing!

The other five playlists feature Melbourne, the Murray, Grampians, High Country and the Great Ocean Road.

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RHONJ’s Melissa and Joe Gorga reveal why they snubbed Teresa Giudice’s wedding

Melissa Gorga and Joe Gorga skipped Teresa Giudice’s wedding (Picture: Getty)

Real Housewives of New Jersey star Melissa Gorga and husband Joe have broken their silence on why they snubbed Teresa Giudice’s lavish wedding.

The RHONJ OG married Luis Ruelas in a stunning ceremony over the weekend, surrounded by friends, Bravo co-stars and most of their loved ones.

However, while the bride’s hairdo totally stole the show, many questioned why her beloved brother and sister-in-law were not among the guests.

Amid speculation concerning Joe and Teresa’s relationship, and what this could mean for the siblings going forward, the dad-of-three shared his side of the story with his wife.

On the latest episode of Melissa’s On Display podcast, she began: ‘Obviously we did not attend your sister’s wedding. We have a laundry list of reasons in our heads [of] why. I will let all my listeners know this — obviously, there was something that went down at the finale of filming The Real Housewives of New Jersey.

‘Those exact details, I obviously cannot say today. Anything that we have filmed is something that I am not able to talk about.

Teresa and Luis got married over the weekend – but not everyone was in attendance (Picture: Instagram)

‘I can full-on tell you that no one, yet, has the full entire story. The full story is not out there yet.’

Addressing the rumors surrounding their non-appearance, she continued: ‘I am not going to sit here and say that there wasn’t drama, that it wasn’t crazy. Yes, there was a little aggression from certain people that could have been a little scary. There definitely were moments.

‘There was plenty of reason for Joe and I to say it would be very strange — including everyone in that room, by the way — to look at Joe and I to say like, “Yes, it would be very strange for you guys to just be sitting in the pews tomorrow, wishing them well on their wedding day.” It would be strange.’

Joe insisted that there was ‘no jealousy’ from their end to his sister with Melissa insisting that they were ‘very hurt’ to sit out the wedding.

Melissa and Joe decided to skip the ceremony for a ‘laundry list’ of reasons (Picture: Getty)

‘It was so, so hard for me. Here you are as my only sister, my only blood,’ the real estate developer continued. ‘We don’t have a big family, we don’t have a lot of cousins, we lost our parents. To me, it was devastating.

‘[Skipping the wedding] was one of the hardest days of my life. It was bad. But listen, let’s go back to the reunion. She did this. This was all on her. This is what she really wanted. She didn’t want you [Melissa] in the wedding.

‘She didn’t want any of my children in the wedding. She barely wanted me. I was asked, after all this information went out, to be in a wedding. And that’s what saddens me.

‘She really didn’t want us there. Now all these things that happened behind closed doors, all these things we’ve been holding in … We forgave, we moved on.’

Teresa and Luis started dating in 2020 (Picture: Backgrid)

Melissa cryptically suggested that they had ‘covered up a lot of things’ that they know, and ‘stay zipped’ because they want Teresa to be happy.

She added: ‘We both will always love Teresa very much and hope that she has everything she wants now and that her girls are happy. And that this is Teresa’s happily ever after.’

As Joe concluded: ‘She looked amazing. The girls looked amazing. The place looked amazing. And she’s been through a lot. I just want her happy. That’s all I want. Her to be happy. So it looked like a fairy tale wedding and I’m so proud of her.’

Despite Joe and Melissa – who have had a tumultuous relationship with the reality icon – deciding to sit the nuptials out, they will be able to catch up on all the gossip from the comfort of their own sofas, as Bravo filmed the wedding for an upcoming wedding special.

Teresa’s hair totally stole the show (Picture: Splash)

A string of familiar faces did take up the invite, including the bride’s New Jersey castmates and fellow Bravolebrities Kenya Moore and Cynthia Bailey, who appeared on season one Real Housewives: Ultimate Girls Trip with her.

Real Housewives of Atlanta’s Phaedra Parks joined her former co-stars, with New York stars Dorinda Medley and Jill Zarin, Potomac favorite Ashley Darby and Chanel Ayan also in attendance.

Teresa and Luis first started dating in 2020, with their romance playing out on our screens for the last two seasons.

They got engaged last year, and have been busy planning the wild ceremony ever since.

Before the ceremony, the cook book author was previously married to Joe Giudice, who she shares children Gia, Gabriella, Milania and Audriana with.

Their 20-year marriage fell apart at the end of 2019, with their divorce granted the following year. has contacted Teresa’s reps for a comment.

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Marape thanks Opposition for his unopposed re-election as PNG Prime Minister

 PNG Prime Minister, James Marape has thanked members of the Opposition in an unprecedented move on Tuesday, to vote for him and the Speaker of the 11th Parliament.

PNG Prime Minister, James Marape 

He says this is the first time, that members from both sides of the House voted in favour of a prime minister. 

Mr. Marape was re-elected unopposed with  97 votes to nil. 

The only member who abstained from voting and left the chamber, was the Leader of the People’s National Congress Party, Peter O’Neill. 

Mr Marape was speaking at the Government House yesterday.


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Strictly speaking – isn’t it time we pulled the plug on naff weekend TV?

For the better part of two decades, Strictly Come Dancing has sashayed onto our screens every autumn, bringing with it more sequins, innuendos and marriage breakdowns than you can shake a stick at.

This week, 11 names were confirmed for the new series, including former Arsenal and England player Tony Adams, gold medal-winning Paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds, actor and presenter Kym Marsh, and comedians Ellie Taylor and Jayde Adams.

But despite the weeks and weeks’ worth of promised glitz and glam, to me it is nothing but a dirge; an outdated relic that embodies an era of television we’re better off forgetting. This feeling is just compounded by the amateur musicians, singing off-key renditions of the Dirty Dancing soundtrack and “Monster Mash” every Halloween special, making it feel more like a school disco or wedding reception than a high-budget production.

Of course, I understand that for many Saturday nights, gathered around a TV screen, eating takeaways from laps, are sacred; a weekly ritual shared with family. I, too, once relished these moments as a teen (when I wasn’t desperately bored and frantically texting my friends for a way out, that is).

The last time I properly watched Strictly was back in 2011. Having grown up adoring McFly, I tuned in religiously to see drummer Harry Judd do everything from the cha-cha-cha to the rumba. The naffness was not lost on me even then, but my view was blinkered and my parents’ phone bill from the endless stream of votes was hefty. I celebrated his victory as if he were my firstborn at sports day.

And although I haven’t watched a full series of the reality show since, whenever I have caught a glimpse on my mum’s TV during my visits home, it seems like very little has changed in the format since it launched in 2004. The only discernible difference is the lack of Bruce Forsyth.

Perhaps that’s why it is so enduringly popular? People love a bit of nostalgia, after all. But now that there’s so much choice at our fingertips, the idea of being forced by the BBC (and ITV, for that matter) to watch glorified talent shows once the weather turns seems more restrictive and quaint than ever before.

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I have nothing against dancing and, actually, it was pretty forward-thinking of the Beeb to introduce such a camp show to mainstream TV when it did. But the whole thing feels tired and worn out, much like Blackpool’s promenade and once-celebrated ballroom where the final used to be hosted.

Due to the lacklustre format, the only drama and excitement that can be found is if someone trips, has a scandalous affair and proves the “Strictly curse” is very much a thing, or during the absurdly chaotic live performances from artists, as they’re surrounded by professional dancers doing the jive.

Worse still is all the supplementary tosh. As if the hours-long live shows weren’t enough, we have to endure all the waffle that goes along with it. Why do we need extra analysis on the dances we saw moments before, pray tell? And the green room chit chat? I couldn’t think of a better example of filler TV if I tried.

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McEnany questions Pelosi, Biden over sons’ business dealings: ‘It’s a trend’

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

“Outnumbered” co-host Kayleigh McEnany highlighted the business dealings of Hunter Biden, Paul Pelosi Jr. and Paul Pelosi Sr., Thursday, scrutinizing their “obscure” business interests. On “Outnumbered”, McEnany highlighted the Biden, Pelosi business dealings in addition to questioning Speaker Pelosi on why she had her son join her trip to Taiwan earlier this month. 


KAYLEIGH MCENANY: How is it that the children of these national political figures all seem to have these similar obscure interests, whether it’s Hunter Biden who somehow loves Ukrainian oil and gas industry. But we know his real passion is being an artist. And you have Paul Pelosi Jr. You mentioned the lithium. He’s also invested in Singapore as well. He’s invested in a Singapore energy sector company. And then you’ve got Paul Pelosi Sr. who happens to be the greatest stock picker in the world, it seems. In fact, New York Post reporting he bought 5 million in stock options on a computer chip company ahead of a vote on legislation that would deliver billions to boost the chip manufacturing industry. But it’s a trend. I want to know, why was he on the trip? Was it just a vacation? Was it taxpayer funded? We’d love to know that. She said he was an escort. I want to know if it was taxpayer funded. Would be a great answer to have. 


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Sean McVay was ‘sick for Van Jefferson’ over timing of knee injury

Van Jefferson will once again be the Rams’ No. 3 receiver this season, but he faces some additional challenges as Week 1 approaches. Jefferson has undergone not one, but two offseason surgeries on his knee.

The second procedure wasn’t planned until Jefferson tweaked his knee in practice, requiring minor surgery to fix the issue. The timing of the injury was poor, not only because it brings his Week 1 status into question, but because he was coming off maybe the best practice he’s ever had as a Ram.

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“I’m sick for Van Jefferson that he was really coming off arguably his best practice as a Ram, looking great, has a little bit of a setback,” McVay said on “Inside Rams Camp” this week. “Fortunately, we’re gonna get him back.”

McVay didn’t specify when Jefferson will be back, and it’s still unclear if he’ll be ready for the season opener on Sept. 8, but there’s still a chance he’ll be on the field against the Bills. Jeremy Fowler of ESPN reported Tuesday that Jefferson has begun training in his rehab and has a chance to play in Week 1.

Tutu Atwell and Ven Skowronek have gotten more opportunities in Jefferson’s place, as has Brandon Powell. And McVay likes what he’s seen from all three.

“What (Jefferson’s injury) has done is create opportunities for Tutu Atwell to show he’s capable. Ben Skowronek, Brandon Powell. Those are the positives, even though you don’t ever want to lose a guy,” McVay said.

When healthy, Jefferson is likely to still be the No. 3 receiver this season, but Atwell is pushing for snaps, too.

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Justice for Kittens Kicked, Crushed and Killed on Snapchat

201 Signatures Collected

PETITION TARGET: Lafayette County Justice Court Prosecutors

Several tiny kittens were attacked with a blade, kicked, crushed, and hit with a chair by a man who filmed himself committing the torture on Snapchat in Oxford, Mississippi, according to news reports.

The video, obtained by nonprofit In Defense of Animals (IDA), showed seven defenseless kittens – four of whom died during the brutal assaults. 

“He methodically and sadistically took them one at a time and killed them in different ways for entertainment,” said IDA’s Campaign Director Doll Stanley.

Police have arrested and charged Carl Travis, Jr., 18,  with a count of aggravated animal cruelty – a felony. He appeared before the Lafayette County Justice Court for an initial hearing, and his case now is scheduled for a grand jury session later this year. 

The link between people who harm animals and then go on to harm other beings is clear.  Acts of sadistic and intentional torture that result in death must be treated with utmost severity. 

Sign our petition urging prosecutors to hold the person(s) responsible for committing and filming this act fully accountable, including a count of animal cruelty for each kitten harmed and killed along with needed intervention services, such as psychological assessment and anger management.

sad kittens

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Health and Social Justice Groups Challenge USDA Over ‘Forcing’ Cow’s Milk on Lactose-Intolerant Students

Nearly two dozen health and social justice groups are challenging the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) over requiring lactose-intolerant children in the National School Lunch Program to drink cow’s milk – or go without.

The groups – including the National Urban League, National Action Network Washington Bureau, NAACP’s Maryland State Conference, Switch4Good, Coalition for Healthy School Food, Women of Color for Equal Justice and the Latino Political Avenue – have asked the USDA Equity Commission via open letter to recommend nutritional alternatives, such as soy milk, which the U.S. Dietary Guidelines recognized as a nutritionally equivalent beverage in 2020.

The letter notes that lactose intolerance –  the inability to digest dairy products without unpleasant side effects, like diarrhea, nausea, bloating, and cramping – disproportionately impacts children of color, who also are overrepresented within the National School Lunch Program. 

The program currently requires schools to serve cow’s milk with every meal in order for schools to be reimbursed and requires a doctor’s note for children who want to bypass the milk cartons – putting an “undue burden” on the program’s families, the organizations say.

“In short, the USDA is implementing a National School Lunch Program that forces cow’s milk on children throughout the public school system,” the signers note. “These children are left with only two unjust options: either drink the milk they are given and suffer intestinal discomfort as they struggle to learn in classrooms following their lunch period or go without a nutritionally significant portion of their meal.”

The organizations say the program’s implementation amounts to dietary racism — defined as systemic, structural inequities surrounding food and nutrition that disproportionately and unjustly impact people of color. 

Requiring milk also contributes to waste, with one study reporting 45 million gallons of milk proffered through the program – with an associated cost to taxpayers of $138 million – are tossed each year.

“Kids are getting sick by the millions, with untold effects on learning and well-being,” the letter states. “And they are tossing unopened containers of milk in the garbage where they contribute to massive amounts of food and fiscal waste each year.”

The organizations are urging the equity commission to conduct an investigation and also shift policy to make dairy-free alternatives more accessible – and to reimburse schools for providing those alternatives –  in order to create a more equitable nutrition program and learning environment, according to a press release.  

The USDA and the USDA Equity Commission did not immediately respond to media inquiries.

Mama cow and baby

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