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Mysterious Korean Word:

Mysterious Korean Word:

Apr 2, 2017

Korean culture is more community focused, and this strong sense of collectivism is deeply permeated in the Korean language. If you study Korean, you will hear “ 우리_____” on a daily basis. Direct translation of “우리” is “we” or “our” in English. However, this is one of those Korean words you often do not want to translate literally. For example, what does “우리 아내” and “우리 남편” mean? Its direct translation would be “our wife” and “our husband” in English. Your response may be something like this: “Uh~, isn’t monogamy the legal practice in Korea?” You might find that these Korean expressions seem quiet strange to your ears. In many cases, you cannot directly translate the meaning of “우리” as “our” in English. “우리 아내” and “우리 남편” actually mean “my wife” and “my husband” in English. Why is this Korean word “우리” deeply permeated in the Korean language? Korean culture emphasizes the value of the group that a person belongs to, whether it is a person’s country, family, school, society, neighbor, hometown, etc. Koreans see these groups as a single entity. This aspect of collectivism has a huge impact on the way Koreans behave and speak. This Korean word “우리” would make sense to you only if you consider these aspects of Korean culture. Because Koreans value a group mindset, they generally use “우리” instead of “my” when they refer to people and things they are related to. Here are some examples that you will frequently hear from Korean speakers: This article, Mysterious Korean Word: , first appeared on Korean Language...

Feeling Sick or Hurt???

Feeling Sick or Hurt???

Mar 19, 2017

No one wants to get sick! However, when sicknesses take you by surprise, the following common expressions will help you to describe general aches and pains in Korean. This article, Feeling Sick or Hurt???, first appeared on Korean Language...

How far is the Pushkar Fair?

How far is the Pushkar Fair?

Oct 24, 2016

The mention of Pushkar Mela (fair) usually generates an excited buzz in travelers to India. Domestic and foreign tourists alike visit the fair for a glimpse and experience of Rajasthan’s intense colors and customs. This article, How far is the Pushkar Fair?, first appeared on Hindi Language...

A Pope, a Dog, and a Venn Diagram: Sermon for Pentecost 12, RCL Proper 14C (7 August 2016)

A Pope, a Dog, and a Venn Diagram: Sermon for Pentecost 12, RCL Proper 14C (7 August 2016)

Aug 11, 2016

==================== A homily offered by the Rev. Dr. C. Eric Funston on the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, August 7, 2016, to the people of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Medina, Ohio, where Fr. Funston is rector. (The lessons for the day are Proper 14C of the Revised Common Lectionary: Genesis 15:1-6; Psalm 33:12-22; Hebrews 11:1-3,8-16; and St. Luke 12:32-40. These lessons may be found at The Lectionary Page.) ==================== In your bulletins this week, I have added three pictures to illustrate this sermon. These pictures kept coming back to mind as I read and re-read the lessons. The pictures are as follows: A photograph of Pope John Paul II’s arrival in Managua, Nicaragua, on July 5, 1983. Fr. Ernesto Cardenal, who served in the Nicaraguan government as Minister of Culture, kneels before the Pope who is wagging his finger at him. One of my favorite cartoons, a four-panel Peanuts offering first published on August 9, 1976, in which the beagle Snoopy is writing a book of theology with the planned title “Has It Ever Occurred to You That You Might Be Wrong?” A generic Venn diagram I will refer to these pictures later in the sermon. Most exegeses of today’s Genesis text focus on the last sentence, “And [Abraham] believed the Lord; and the Lord reckoned it to him as righteousness,” and treat this story as one of faith. But, in all honesty, this is a story of doubt. It is the story of Abraham questioning God’s promise of a posterity; it is a story of tribalism and concern for bloodline, ethnicity, and inheritance. We humans have a predisposition to tribalism, to congregating in social groupings of similar people. I was at a continuing education event this week in which one of the exercises explored the issue of economic segregation in our society; the facilitator asked each of us to describe the home in which we live and the neighborhood and community within which it is situated. One of the uniform characteristics was that no matter what our race or ethnic type might have been, our home neighborhoods were made up of people for the most part similar to ourselves. We in modern 21st Century...

4 Prisoners Released Same Day US Sent $400 Million to Iran; Officials Deny Ransom Claims

4 Prisoners Released Same Day US Sent $400 Million to Iran; Officials Deny Ransom Claims

Aug 5, 2016

Watch Video The Obama administration secretly arranged a plane delivery of $400 million in cash on the same day Iran released four American prisoners and formally implemented the nuclear deal, US officials confirmed Wednesday. President Barack Obama speaks during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur on Nov. 22, 2015. (Credit: FRED DEFOUR/AFP/Getty Images) President Barack Obama approved the $400 million transfer, which he had announced in January as part of the Iran nuclear deal. The money was flown into Iran on wooden pallets stacked with Swiss francs, euros and other currencies as the first installment of a $1.7 billion settlement resolving claims at an international tribunal at The Hague over a failed arms deal under the time of the Shah. A fifth American man was released by Iran separately. Details of the cash delivery drew fresh condemnation of the Iran deal from Republicans. They charged that the administration had empowered a major sponsor of terrorism because the nuclear agreement enables Tehran to re-enter the international economy and gives it access long-frozen funds. In addition, they said the cash delivery amounted to a ransom payment that violates long-standing US practice not to pay for hostages. As such, they argued, it encourages Iran to hold onto its remaining Americans prisoners until they can get more money for them. “Paying ransom to kidnappers puts Americans even more at risk,” said Illinois Republican Sen. Mark Kirk. “While Americans were relieved by Iran’s overdue release of illegally imprisoned American hostages, the White House’s policy of appeasement has led Iran to illegally seize more American hostages, including Siamak Namazi, his father Baquer Namazi and Reza Shahini.” Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump jumped on the issue, seeking to change the subject after a punishing week of gaffes and reproaches from members of the GOP. “Iran was in big trouble, they had sanctions, they were dying, we took off the sanctions and made this horrible deal and now they’re a power,” Trump said Wednesday in Daytona, Florida. “We paid $400 million for the hostages,” Trump said. “Such a bad precedent was set by Obama. We have two more hostages there right? What’s are we going to pay for them? What we’re doing...

Dont boo. Vote. (And dont boo the voters)

Dont boo. Vote. (And dont boo the voters)

Aug 1, 2016

During his speech at the Democratic Convention, President Obama mentioned Donald Trump by name and was met with a chorus of jeers. The President’s response: “Don’t boo. Vote.” This is a profound challenge to Catholics this election cycle who, informed by the expansive moral vision of the church, have two candidates to boo and nobody for whom to cheer. As Jana Bennett pointed out yesterday, Faithful Citizenship does leave open the possibility of not voting when “all the candidates hold a position that promotes an intrinsically evil act.” It ought to be noted though that Faithful Citizenship calls this decision an “extraordinary step.” In other words, the decision not to vote, though legitimate, ought not to be considered a foregone conclusion. Catholics who do choose to vote this election cycle will have a serious challenge of figuring out which candidate is “less likely to advance a morally flawed position [and] advance the common good.” It is not at all clear which candidate this is. What is clear is that in the past, Catholics have been able to hold up the Republican candidate as, at the very least opposed to abortion. While I agree with Jana that the concept of non-negotiables is not helpful (nor is it magisterial), it has provided a useful heuristic for Catholics who care deeply about the evils of abortion as the most important issue in a given election year. This is no longer the case. There is no longer a clear “pro-life” candidate, though Trump will certainly court that constituency. Nor is it clear which “non-negotiables,” if you still want to use that language, even matter this election cycle. I don’t really see the two candidates debating abortion, same-sex marriage, euthanasia, stem cell research, and human cloning. These are not the issues that really matter this time around. In short, the conversation about who to vote for (or who to vote against if that language helps you feel better) will look different in 2016 than it did four or eight years ago. But honestly, for many Catholics, it wasn’t all that clear who to vote for four and eight and twelve years ago either. This election might be different in...