The great rugby versus football debate

first_imgGolden boots and golden balls: Jonny Wilkinson and David Beckham are stars in their respective sportsBy Sarah Mockford, Rugby World Features EditorANTICS ON the football field lately, particularly the endless diving and poor attitudes on show in the Barcelona-Real Madrid Champions League semi-final, have left many fans disenchanted with the game. Then there are all the sordid tales of off-field misbehaviour in the tabloids – and that’s before you consider all the stories now protected by super injunctions.It was a recent comment from Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic that caught my eye and brought up the age-old debate of whether football can learn from rugby. He said: “When I played in Serbia and Russia, players dived. In England, you don’t so much. That’s why people love to see English football. Fans don’t come to watch people going down or arguing on the pitch. Fans enjoy it when players are honest.“You have rugby in England. You see how much respect they have. They challenge, they hurt each other, they even fight – but how many do you see rolling on the pitch? This is respect. That is what football should be like.”Rugby has often preached to football about the need to respect officials, fair play and so on – but can the sport still lord it over their round-ball cousins? Frankly, I’d say no. Rugby is not whiter than white, far from it in fact given their own recent misdemeanours. Bloodgate is the obvious example to disprove the theory, but more recently there have been bad cases of gouging and even this weekend bore witness to an instance of unsportsmanlike behaviour, Manu Tuilagi landing three punches on Chris Ashton in the Aviva Premiership semi-final between Leicester and Northampton.Fireworks: Danny Cipriani’s late-night outings have not gone down well with his Melbourne Rebels team-matesOff the field, there have been drugs bans and plenty of drunken antics, recent incidents involving Andy Powell, Gavin Henson and Danny Cipriani cases in point. Even rugby’s bureaucracy has become as farcical as football given last week’s embarrassing U-turn by the RFU. So surely rugby union needs to look at itself before preaching to other sports. Yes there are plenty of good things about the game but there are things that need to be addressed – and fast – for rugby to ensure the sport maintains its traditional values and enhances its reputation. Perhaps then rugby could even attract some of those disillusioned football fans, this year’s World Cup a perfect opportunity to do so. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS “Rugby’s not a saint by any stretch of the imagination,” says former Australia fly-half Michael Lynagh. “Players are getting into trouble on and off the pitch.”Ex-Gloucester coach Dean Ryan believes it’s important to educate young players coming through the ranks so that they realise they are role models. He says: “It’s not just rugby or football, we’re talking about young men playing sport and the responsibility that comes with that. A lot of things come with paying young men enormous amounts of money and we need to look at how to support players in terms of education. I hope the World Cup is a show – the last thing the sport wants is to be clouded by bad incidents.”Ieuan Evans, the former Wales wing, realises the potential of the World Cup as rugby’s showpiece event but is realistic enough to point out that the sport will always play second fiddle to football.“The audience is bigger for the World Cup so is a great way to promote the game, but we’ll never compete with football because that is the truly global game. But we can spread the word of the game with the World Cup. We want to offer entertainment and for young people to be drawn in. We want kids across the world to follow the sport.”center_img And it will be fantastic if those children appreciate the respect and camaraderie that makes rugby such a special sport. However, rugby must also ensure it gets its own house in order before preaching to other sports about rights and wrongs. The game is not perfect.To read more views from the Sky Sports analysts on rugby’s big issues, see the July issue of Rugby World, on sale Tuesday 7 June.last_img read more

From Heineken Cup to Guinness Champions Cup?

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Guinness have previous experience in this particular market, having been the title sponsor for the Premiership from 2005 to 2010, and they have kept their hand in with being official drinks partner with home unions and lending their name to Ireland’s upcoming autumn Internationals at the Aviva Stadium.Of course, if this does come off, maybe the good folks at Heineken would look at sponsoring the soon-to-be sponsor-less Pro12 who part company with RaboDirect at the end of this season. Toulon’s rugby union Captain Sebastien Tillous-Borde poses for photographers with the HCup trophy during the European Rugby Challenge (ERC) schedule presentation, in Paris on September 23, 2013. Toulon will play the 2013/2014 HCup European championships. AFP PHOTO / LIONEL BONAVENTURE (Photo credit should read LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP/Getty Images) Glory days: Guinness pulled out of the Premiership in 2010, but could come back to club rugby according to reportsBy Alan DymockIF FRENCH publication Midi Olympique is to be believed, the union of Premiership Rugby and Ligue Nationale de Rugby could soon be joining forces with Guinness.The sports ‘paper insists that representatives of both clubs’ governing bodies swooped into Dublin this week to have tentative discussions with the Diageo-owned stout brand about sponsoring the proposed Rugby Champions Cup that could replace the current format of the Heineken Cup.Is Toulon’s Heineken Cup doomed?While representatives of PRL and LNR still refuse to sit with European Rugby Cup and their mediator Graham Mew on the date set forward for ‘discussions’ leading to a possible accord, October 23, they have forged ahead with plans for the new competition, maintaining doubt over the other ERC member clubs’ European futures. More so than this, with rumours circulating that television companies in France, England and even the middle east – with BT Sport being constantly linked with a potential tie-in – any huge sponsor coming in for the competition would make it nigh on impossible for the current format to be saved.last_img read more

Top 14: Is there a blueprint for success?

first_img Foreign legion: Aussie James O’Connor and Chris Masoe run at Ireland’s Johnny Sexton LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Mention in the French media of Uini Atonio and Rory Kockott being called up is interesting when it is considered that New Zealand tightheads and South African scrum-halves have been used regularly in the opening rounds this season.While hooker, flanker, centre and full-back appear to be positions of depth for France (in quantity at least), an under pressure and usually pragmatic Saint-André may opt to follow the blueprint used by his Top 14 colleagues for other positions. With an absence of traditional French flair, the next time we see another ‘try from the end of the world’ it may be created and scored by those from around the world. In his first stats-based piece, Russ Petty looks at the breakdown of personnel in the multi-national Top 14…center_img Last season’s Top 14 was fiercely contested with just a 16-point gap separating top side Toulon and Brive in ninth place. As a comparison, the difference between first and ninth place was 43 points in the Aviva Premiership and 47 points in the Guinness Pro12. A notable change in attitude towards away fixtures is a factor in the increased competitiveness in the French league, but perhaps more significant is the composition and similarity of the squads. Are the collective owners following the same blueprint for assembling a ‘perfect’ team?It may not be a huge surprise that the majority of imports to France are (in order) from South Africa, New Zealand, Fiji, Australia, Tonga, Georgia, and Samoa. Of greater interest is the clear pattern of recruiting each nation’s iconic or traditionally strong position(s), as can be seen below.[Factors such as JIFF, Kolpak ruling, player eligibility / nationality means such a list can only be used as a rough squad guide rather than treated as fully accurate, as an example: Clermont prop Daniel Kötze, born in South Africa but now capped for France]Georgia on my bindRampaging flanker Mamuka ‘Gorgodzilla’ Gorgodze might take the headlines, but The Lelos are better associated with churning out a seemingly endless supply of destructive scrummagers from the prop factories in Tbilisi. The sides without one of these (usually) bearded behemoths are in the minority and an average of four Georgian props start in each round.Bok brains and brawnIn a league oft characterised as set piece orientated, it makes sense to head to South Africa for aggressive enforcers and lineout technicians in the engine room. With the likes of Juandré Kruger and Bakkies Botha are winning ball in the air or throwing their weight around, there has also been an increase in the number of South African scrum-halves brought in to manage the game, with an average of 4 starters each round this year.Brain power: Castres’ South Africa-born scrum-half Rory Kockott bossing playBacking BlackNew Zealand is well represented at prop, No 8, fly-half, centre and wing and an explanation for that variety would be the different heritages involved. As an example: powerful No 8 Alex Tulou who was born in American Samoa or prop Saimone Taumoepeau from Tonga. Bayonne bruiser Charles Ollivon stood out in the first round not just for his strong carrying but also his status as a French qualified No 8, seemingly an endangered species, with an average of just 5 starting per round last season. Only he and (Durban-born) Antonie Claassen made starting line-ups in the first week, compared to Lee, Grice, Clarkin, Whetton and Tulou from New Zealand. Along with the dominant back-row ball-carriers and tighthead props, midfield guile is also a sought after commodity with an average of five Kiwi centres appearing each round.Fijian firepowerHaving overpowered an opponent up front or unlocked their defence, a finisher is still required and that role is increasingly being given to a Fijian flyer. Lethal pace and ability to beat defenders also means a defensively minded side can chose to sit back and strike on the counter.  Only 34 of the 81 tries scored so far this season were by French players and there has been a steady decline in French representation in the top ten try scorers each year, with just Sofiane Guitoune making the list last season. In contrast, Fijians Talebula, Nagusa, Nayacalevu and Nalaga all managed eight or more tries. With Brive seeking to gain an advantage in the recruitment arms race by opening an academy in Nadi, Fiji, Noa Nakaitaci is unlikely to be the last example of a French convert.Effect on Les Bleus?In Confessions of a Rugby Mercenary, John Daniell described top level rugby as: “not really a choice between the rapier and the cudgel: everyone has a cudgel, so you better have one too, and the bigger the better. But you would be well-advised to have a rapier as well, and to know how to handle it”.When France coach Philippe Saint-André checks the Top 14 armoury, he may find those weapons aren’t all available for his selection.Breakdown of starters by nationality for rounds one and two of current Top 14 seasonlast_img read more

Concussion: A special report

first_img Red alert: George North’s concussive incidents during the Six Nations shocked many In the April issue of Rugby World, we brought you this in-depth report on the biggest problem in rugby. “Then, in a pool game I had another one – a kind of mini-concussion – but from a really small knock. It was not good to go down from something like that, because it wasn’t like I was smashing into a four-on-one tackle. So I asked to come off for the first time in my career. I missed the next pool game, recovered in a week and then there was the semi and the final.”A small act, you may say, asking to come off. But it was significant. When have you ever seen players asking to come off the park because they are woozy? At Test level?Concussion may not be immediately obvious if the player’s balance hasn’t gone, but in this instance no assessment was needed, no medic putting their foot down. Merchant was out there playing for England and despite the enormity of the day she took a knee and signalled to the bench for a change.Big match player: Kat Merchant in battle with EnglandShe has memories of feeling fine in other games, wanting to go back on but being stopped. That’s a good physio who stopped her. She praises the continued message worldwide of ‘recognise and remove’. However, in her capacity as a coach now, with Worcester’s ladies and Chesham’s men, she feels the need to explain the risks to her players. Coaches at every level need to take the issue seriously and find out as much as they can and players need to appreciate the seriousness of trying to play on. After all, how many players know that they are up to 75% more likely to injure their body as well as their head whilst concussed or that women are two and a half times more likely than men to become concussed?They can’t all be Tatafu Polota-Nau, the Wallabies and Waratahs hooker who has offered up his head to science following a few blows throughout his career. He regularly gets his head scanned in the hope that we can learn more about concussion. He has even said, following four big concussions throughout his career: “I might have to watch out for the fifth one.” He’s doing this for those who have had multiple concussions.In many ways what Polota-Nau is doing is brave. He is also aiding science. Good research, you see, is very important. There is still so much we don’t understand.IN THE LABAn involuntary jolt fires through the forearm, index finger and thumb of my right arm, like I’m hailing a tiny cab I didn’t know I wanted. I’m in Birmingham, visiting with a team of researchers at Queen Elizabeth Hospital and they are using powerful magnets to try to invoke a physical reaction from my brain.The day began with Moseley’s team doctor, maxillofacial surgeon Doug Hammond, meeting me at the University train station and leading me up to the hospital. And there they were, lined up and waiting: the RECOS team, looking at REpetitive COncussions in Sport, overseen by Professor Tony Belli, a world-renowned neurosurgeon.Through a study of concussed athletes, physiologically tested within 72 hours of their latest concussion and continually retested at fortnightly periods until they are symptom-free, the team hope to discover which combination of relatively cheap, effective tests can inform medics that an athlete is indeed concussed and, perhaps more importantly, more accurately inform return-to-play protocols in individual cases.For the study the team have an MRI scanner at their disposal, but the other weapons in their arsenal include Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS – the magnetic coil inducing limb movement), the well-known Immediate Post Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT is often used to test an individual’s memory and spatial attention among other things) and a series of tests for balance, fine motor skills and processing speeds.As well as this they take samples of blood and urine, while analysing breath. The wisdom here is that certain biomarkers can indicate that an individual is concussed. Now, few sports teams could consider housing an MRI machine in the stadium, let alone house a fantasy lab capable of analysing blood and urine in a short space of time. However, the hope is that the team can find the right combination of tests to produce results as near to that of an MRI and chemical analysis so as to make an educated call on whether an athlete is concussed or not, in real time, on game day. They are also looking at technology to study a concussed subject’s pupils while piloting a breathalyser that can pick out the biomarkers for head trauma in a subject’s exhaled breath, within minutes or even hours of an episode.Switched on: Nigel Owens sends Jamie Cudmore for a Head Injury AssessmentProfessor Belli’s team are enthusiastic and prepared to suffer scrutiny as they push their work, but they are also realistic. While they plan to study up to 25 athletes, they have to retain volunteers’ services once they’ve got them to come forward in the first place, and as the work is funded by the National Institute for Health Research, they must continually review, present and evolve. There’s no magic wand here, no advice for protocol changes for the end of the Six Nations. You can’t rush science. Especially not when someone won’t take time off work to come back to the lab now their head has cleared.“It’s taken us three years to get to this point and planning before that,” says Hammond, “and to then find a solution could take another three years.”Professor Belli steps in at this point, saying: “I’ve been working with traumatic brain injuries for most of my career. In the last few years it has become apparent that this is not a small-scale problem at all – 1.4m people in the UK are affected by concussion every year and in sport and the military this is a particular problem.“The fact we can now have an objective marker of where there is a brain injury is (good). With athletes and in the military, where people may not volunteer or may mask their symptoms, it can be because they want to return to play but it can also be because they are concussed and don’t know what the symptoms are. So now we’re hoping to expand on previous work on spotting biomarkers but with a much bigger panel of investigation that might give us the answer – because putting athletes or teams from school through scanners every time is not going to be feasible. These could be tests that give us the answers at all levels – cheap, portable and maybe something you could use in a physio clinic.”The fear is that their research is treated like academic work done for academics. After all, it’s hard enough pinning down the definition of concussion – the RECOS group work with the notion of ‘transient malfunction’.In the thick of it: Dr Simon Kemp in 2008Dr Simon Kemp, the RFU’s medical head, would also like to tie down the definition. He says: “My wish-list for the next five or so years is: one, in the next meeting of the Zurich convention, we have agreement on what concussion looks and feels like. Two, we do more work on refining and validating the tools, pitchside. Three, we have more scrutiny of graduated return to play guidelines. Four, we gather more evidence of the long-term effects of concussion, which we hope to find with a study of former England players through our ERIC database. Five, education. We must bring together guidelines across sports, schools and medical outlets.”Of course, the message on concussion is one for rugby as a whole. Down the leagues and in junior games, the need to be aware is just as keen as in the pro game.AT GRASS ROOTS“Some of the powers don’t like me because I speak out,” says Victor Bellamy, a one-man force as Romford & Gidea Park’s Head of Medical. He forced himself to learn everything he could about concussion in order to look after young players. He loves the work of Kemp and his team, but it’s not the elite players he cares about. He needs the real players, the amateurs, to get it. This is a man who saw Jackson Wray miss 16 weeks as a junior because of knocks. He’s had bad experiences, too.“If you don’t know a player and a knock’s happened elsewhere, it can be missed. There are managers I know (in nearby rugby clubs) that will tell me, the coaches will definitely tell me. But if the parents don’t know and the managers don’t tell me, then the snipers come out. ‘He was knocked out last week and he’s playing again.’ You’re stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea as medics, and the manager and parent, who are very pally, decide they want little Jonny to play. But the RFU have got it right, with a doctor’s letter needed to come back.“But very recently I asked for a doctor’s letter and the dad brought me a Post-it note, with ‘to whom it may concern…’ and a stamp. If that’s how some GPs treat it, what chance have parents got? I’m going to send that to Simon (Kemp). ‘What am I meant to do with this?’”It’s a quaint story, but one of a few Bellamy has at his disposal. He’s seen parents scooping knocked-out kids off the ground and running with them to medical areas. He’s had county coaches trying to put players straight back in without a doctor’s letter or fitness tests. He’s had “bad arguments” with a minority of coaches who try to hide their best players from the medical team. Other local clubs are sending players to see Bellamy as their own access isn’t what they would want it to be. So ‘education’ is not just a phrase tossed down from the top.“It’s a massive thing for young players,” Bellamy says. “The money isn’t there. For argument’s sake, take any county in the country, split it into four. There could be 20 to 30 teams in each quarter. One Monday every month you visit one of those areas and the county physios do an up-to-date injury seminar. But that would cost money, and who wants to give up two to three hours of their Monday night?” The RFU are rolling out seminars on concussion, but Bellamy has had chats with some National League clubs who wanted to know a bit more. There’s more money and supposedly better rugby at that level, but there are still doubts and black holes in some clubs’ knowledge when it comes to concussion. So don’t assume knowledge. Find out what you can about concussion yourself. Push others to do the same.CONCLUSIONEarly one Saturday in February, Rich Freeman, Rugby World’s man in Japan, tweeted about concussion in the Top League. Curious, I sent him an email.He responded that he’d seen incidents where players had to be stopped by team-mates from going back on with concussion or where ‘foreign’ players registered disgust with the handling of concussion in Japan.Big in Japan? Th Top LEague could do more to fight concussion, say someSo I put the issue to Josh Blackie of the International Rugby Players’ Association, who responded in a surprisingly strong way that they had rounded on the JRFU on this. He also said: “There are isolated incidents or mistakes made at the elite level which we have been made aware of, this makes it scary to think what could be taking place at the pre-elite level (ie at universities).”Japan, very recently, were in the top ten of the world rankings. It makes you shudder. The governing body are on Japan’s back and there is pressure to change. We know about this. We know about the good work at elite level. It’s lesser nations and the lower reaches of our game that we need to make sure are best prepared. Because if things don’t continue to change we may have more harrowing stories to tell.Find out as much as you can. Make sure your club is as up to date as they can be on concussion management, and speak to the parents and the kids. And if you see any poor handling of the issue, raise hell. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS TAGS: Investigation THE LINE wasn’t great but you could pick up the slight slur in his words. “I’m still trying to get over the last head knock, over two years ago,” Glen Gregory says.To know of Gregory you’d have to be one of those people who watches any rugby; specifically the ITM Cup in New Zealand. Gregory is a hunting guide now on the north island, but he played in the back row for the Tasman Makos, before chucking his life in a bag and flying over to Siberia for a stint with Krasny Yar Krasnoyarsk in Russian professional rugby. He enjoyed it but it was there where his last concussive blow came.“It’s mainly headaches I get now,” Gregory says after explaining his long history of concussion. “I’ve learnt to manage my symptoms differently, to cope. I still get really tired and I cannot run, but I manage with a little help (from my parents). I have to wear sunglasses all the time. I get nausea, can’t handle things too loud. I’m looking to get some specialist hearing aids made. But it’s expensive and I get no support in New Zealand. I left that support system behind when I went to Russia; no access to career-ending injury support.”Slip n slide: Glen Gregory helps make a tackle for the MakosBy his own account Gregory’s style of play was more spit than slick, more dirty groundwork than jinking through holes. He had yarns with Todd Blackadder about drifting towards the Crusaders system but as he fronted up about the state of his head – he was first hospitalised at 16 because of concussion, but got on with it for 11 more years of rugby – he decided that a trip to the vast Russian unknown for a few bucks was a better option for a pro custom-built for rough play.But at 27, in the build-up to what would potentially be a crowning glory for Krasnoyarsk as they prepared for a cup final, the lights of his career dimmed.He explains: “In my last ever match I got a boot in the head. I wasn’t KO’d so I played on for 80 minutes. I thought I had gotten away with it. I went to the after-match function, had a few beers… not a great idea.“I’d had a few concussions before and I had not played a game with all of my symptoms gone. The head coach wanted me sent home (after this last one). I could have gone, but I’d signed a two-year contract. We had to win at all costs. Mate, I was in trouble. The next day, after meeting the president, I had a meeting with the coach and a translator. I couldn’t get up the stairs! But we had a final to play in six weeks from then. I honestly thought I’d come right. I was hiding.”Hiding is one thing. Lightly ribbing someone for being ‘soft’ is another. But in the cut-throat world of professional rugby outside of the Tier One nations it can be dangerously tough. And cavalier. Gregory tells of local players unable to comprehend head troubles. He also explains that because some of the very same players get paid only if they play, they would purposefully go out in training trying to hurt the man in front of them in the pecking order. Gregory had seen kicks in the head. We often talk of athletes’ livelihoods, but in this case players tear at team-mates to earn their crust. Then you’ve got the ‘medical support’ the player received.“My speed was sluggish,” Gregory continues. “If I closed my eyes in the shower I’d nearly fall over. The coaches got a doctor to give me a whole heap of drugs. And the symptoms went! I thought, ‘This isn’t good, but I’ll play again!’ I came off the drugs the next day and I felt awful again. They were just masking the symptoms.“These treatments: you name it, they tried it. They had me hooked up to an IV drip of vitamins. I just had to roll with the punches. And I couldn’t really tell people anything. It really wasn’t easy.“I couldn’t play the final. It didn’t go down too well. I spoke to the club president and said, ‘Look, I’m done’. I told him I would go away, get right and come back.“I saw a top specialist in New Zealand, a neurologist and the doctor the Highlanders use. He pretty much said, ‘F***, you’re crazy if you want to play again!’ I honestly thought I’d be told I was going to be alright, but I left there crapping myself. You can come back from a sore knee or something like that, but if you think you’re coming back from this you’re kidding yourself.”High profile: Mike Brown was out cold against Italy in the Six NationsTHE GOVERNING MESSAGETHINGS MAY look grim for Gregory, but he is optimistic, and for all the fears he loved his time in Russia. He would like to coach one day, should his head ever clear enough for him to take it seriously. He was unlucky, sure, but he also takes a lot of the blame. His dad was ‘old school’ when he was 16, some of the Russians lads were ‘old school’ too, but Gregory kept putting himself and his head in harm’s way.He also believes that the global approach to concussion has changed in the past three years – something World Rugby and several experts in the field would agree with.World Rugby have sought out the advice of respected specialists like Bob Cantu and Ann McKee to develop concussion guidelines, iron out the Head Injury Assessment (HIA, a series of memory tests and physiological checks used to determine if a player is concussed, within a ten-minute window) and to come up with their laudable ‘Recognise and Remove’ awareness campaign. They insist they worked together to come up with best-practice coaching techniques and commissioned reviews of the laws and norms of play so as to ‘limit exposure to head trauma’. They also suggest the as yet unpublished research into the long-term effects of concussion on players, at Auckland University, could help them further when it is finally completed.Raising awareness: Jamie Roberts launched a WRU awareness campaignOn their message, a World Rugby spokesperson states: “Together we are committed to changing. Rugby operates a zero-tolerance stance towards playing with suspected concussion and the message to the global rugby family is ‘recognise and remove’. Any player with clear concussion symptoms will be removed immediately and must not return.”Of course, as good as the directives are, it is hard to avoid that feeling that it is two steps forward and one step back with awareness of concussion in Test rugby. And when unavoidable human error does get in the way, it can be potentially dangerous.Look at the George North incidents against England in this year’s RBS 6 Nations, when, having undergone the HIA and got the all-clear after a first-half kick in the head, he clashed heads with Richard Hibbard. Protocols insist that any suspicion of a lack of consciousness results in automatic removal; no tests, no talks. After the second clash North was as limp as a string of overcooked spaghetti but he stayed on.Of course, after a review by World Rugby, it became clear this was a case of human error, the medics didn’t see the incident in the thick of the action. However, that showcases an inherent flaw in the system. You dictate a protocol and it’s missed, unknowingly or otherwise – that spells for all sorts of potential disaster.Dr Willie Stewart, a consultant neuropathologist running studies out of Glasgow University and one of the clearest voices on the issues of concussion in sport, feels that sanctions are the clear way of pushing all Test sides and pro clubs into line. As for our understanding – and here the RFU’s player injuries audit, where the number of reported concussions have increased over the past year by 59%, can be held up – he feels we must embrace that head injuries in rugby are an ever-present worry, not to be accepted then left alone. “What we’re coming around to is a clearer picture of concussions. The number of concussions is being reported better, there are clearer systems. A look at the RFU’s injury audit shows concussions have doubled in the past ten years and are possibly under-reported. The true number could be 50% higher, perhaps? What we need to ask is, at which point is the level of brain injury too high? Perhaps we’ve crossed that line already. I’ll continue to encourage the whole industry to change.“The NFL, for example, have rectified rules to try to reduce risk and they have been subtle and it’s still the same game. Rugby could do that and it doesn’t need to be outside-of-the-box stuff or part of an expensive study. They spent around £500k on the scrum study at Bath and made some logical changes you and I could have come up with in the pub over a couple of pints. So small changes could come in to rugby that don’t necessarily have to be on a Saturday afternoon. Encourage far less contact in training – save it for the weekend. And cut down on some of the high-risk play. The one (area to be looked at) that comes to mind instantly is the high ball. Making those changes could come in now and while fans might not agree, they would still much rather see players on the park and upright.”Dr Stewart believes one major barrier to consistent concussion management relates to the many and varied approaches to concussion management in sport, with each sport effectively providing its own, sport-specific guidance. “The only way to progress is for the management to be dictated by the injury, not the sport. To do this requires one single set of common guidelines to be agreed and promoted, at least at grass-roots level.”Infamous incident: George Smith briefly leaving the pitch with concussion in 2013There have been high-profile rugby failures that were held up as signs the powers-that-be had to enact change, as with the North incident or the infamous George Smith concussion shocker against the Lions in 2013 or the Florian Fritz debacle last season, when the blood-soaked Toulouse centre left the field with wobbly legs and vacant eyes, but soon re-entered the fray. If you dwell on these incidents at the very top you will be terrified. Yet, you must give credit to those who have done good. Just ask Dr Stewart about the positives.“Rugby has come so far,” he says. “World Rugby took the step to get Bob Cantu and myself in to look at things, to be very critical. They wanted us to have open, frank discussions about the issue. They’re attempting to make a change. It should evolve and be better researched.”However, there is another element to this. Why do players, some of whom have recent histories of concussion, want to play on just like Gregory did?THE PLAYERS’ VIEWElton Flatley had the wherewithal to call time on his career at the age of 28. He explains: “In my last game before I retired, I took a knock and had blurred vision in my eye. Over the space of a year I had more issues around concussion and it was frustrating. In that game against the Western Force, I hesitated before taking contact – it was the first time I had ever done that – and I walked off. I said to the doctor, ‘I’m done’.”He discussed his options with the Queensland Reds team doctor after pulling himself out against the Force. He feared he would let his team-mates down, that by going into contact half-hearted it was all already over. He hung up the boots. But he feels he was blissfully prevented from making calls for himself because his medical support was so hands on, even though this was ten years ago and the fundamental understanding of concussion management was not as advanced as it is now. Yet, he agrees, his symptoms were fairly obvious.Feeling the Force: Elton Flatley in action for Queensland Reds“With concussions, mine was a choice to retire. Some guys may have pushed themselves because they could, whereas my concussions were affecting my performance. I’m a proud guy! If I could still perform maybe I could have been able to play longer, but do I think some competitive athletes mask their problems? Some would say ‘yes’ and we certainly didn’t know as much when I was playing as we do now. We understand long-term consequences better now.”Yes, but would you have continued if you were playing well and remained fearless, even with the concussions? “I can understand why some athletes would want to continue. It’s a great environment, being a sportsman. The real world is scary. But you’ve only got one melon. I still love this game but you have to look after your head.”Such self-awareness isn’t confined to the Australian game or even the men’s game. Kat Merchant won the Women’s World Cup with England in 2014, but in the off-season she decided she should pull the plug on her playing days.“I was delighted to win the World Cup but it was tough to end the career, especially as I wanted to play some (professional) sevens,” the former Worcester winger says. “But you’ve only got one brain and after being knocked a few times I knew it was time to call it a day.”When did you know you had issues? “I played a club game against Saracens and had a bad one; I was properly knocked out. My family were on the side watching that game and it worried them a little, but I was back in time to play in the World Cup. This feature furst appeared in the April 2015 issue of Rugby World magazine. For the latest Rugby World subscription offers, click here.last_img read more

Five things we learnt in rugby – December

first_img Saints smashed: Quins’ Dave Ward leaves the Northampton defence trailing. Photo: Getty Images TAGS: Northampton Saints Two No 2s: Jamie George and Dylan Hartley in England training. Photo: Getty ImagesJamie George is by some distance the best hooker in English rugby, with a consistency of performance that is now impossible to ignore, while Luke Cowan-Dickie not far behind.Jones doesn’t shy away from making horribly blunt team selections and substitutions, just ask fellow Northampton Saint Teimana Harrison, but equally he will not be pressurised into any decision that isn’t purely his. The Hartley issue seems like the latter and isn’t likely to change any time soon. I would have found it easier to explain why a man, led by eight land-based mammals, was able to circumnavigate the world in 24 hours in the air than why Elliot Dee was cited for his ‘push’ on Andrew Brace in the Dragons‘ game against Cardiff Blues. It was quite farcical.Forward march: Elliot Dee on the charge for the Dragons. Photo: Getty ImagesWe all understand that there should be zero contact on the referee, but if a referee gets his positioning so wrong that he finds himself standing in such a narrow channel, then some of the responsibility to avoid contact is surely also his?Players already have enough to worry about with 19st monsters flying down their channel, without having to fret over accidentally nudging a 12st bloke off his feet. It was a silly episode more suited to the panto season, not the rugby season. “Heeeeee’s beeeeeeehind you, ref!”FOR THE LATEST SUBSCRIPTION OFFERS, CLICK HEREJordan Larmour goes full 1990sIf you haven’t seen Jordan Larmour’s try against Munster then I suggest you watch it below. It was glorious. A genuine throwback to the 1990s and the age of Christian Cullen. No spreadsheet rugby, no protein shake required and no bench-press record, just a 20-year-old stepping his guts out like he was trying to outrun an overzealous citing officer (see above). Three glorious steps, two off the left foot, one off the right, and six defenders left wondering what was happening.It also begs the question why we only really see plays like this from young, inexperienced players? It is very rare that you see a seasoned northern hemisphere international even try to break from their own half. Is it over-coaching? A fear of losing the ball having been drilled into them as they move up through the ranks? Either way I want to see more of Jordan Larmour. Hat tip.Eddie Jones has a decision to make at hookerIt is very difficult to criticise Eddie Jones. Why would you want to? His turn around of the England squad has been nothing short of seismic. However, one question remains unasked even though everyone is thinking it. Dylan Hartley is probably even asking it. Why is Dylan Hartley being picked as the starting hooker for England? LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Paul Williams takes a look at the goings-on in the game at the end of 2017 Northampton continue to slideOrdinarily, Leicester Tigers’ sixth defeat in a row would grab the headlines were it not that 37 miles down the road Northampton Saints continue with a bizarre run of form. It’s a run of games that move beyond defeats and lie firmly in the ‘absolutely pasted’ category.Saints, as a collective, haven’t had it this bad since Pope Paul VI removed 93 of them from the Catholic calendar in 1969. Many of them were removed on the basis that their achievements/miracles were based on myth, not fact, which draws a rather neat parallel with Northampton’s defensive completion of late.Against Harlequins, Saints finished the game with a completion of just 63%. After 40 minutes, the percentage was as low as 56%, which meant that they were nearly missing every other tackle. Add to that sizeable defeats by a struggling Ospreys team and the severity of the situation becomes even clearer.The reality is that if London Irish weren’t having such a disappointing season, Saints would be facing a relegation battle. Alan Gaffney has some major New Year’s Resolutions to sort out.France hire a French coach – againThere was one final turkey killed off in December – France’s experiment with Guy Noves at the helm. It would be unfair to blame Noves for everything that is wrong with French rugby. It was broken before he arrived and will be broken for some time to come. The Top 14 simply isn’t set up with any sympathy for Test rugby and the national team’s performances prove that.However, what is perhaps even stranger than Noves’s appointment in the first place is that the FFR have once again opted for an ‘older’ French coach in Jacques Brunel. It’s an approach French rugby doesn’t adopt when it comes to recruiting players for their league and picking residency-qualified players in their Test team.Head man: Jacques Brunel is the new France coach. Photo: Getty ImagesThe Top 14 is propped up by Pacific Islanders and big name SANZAAR player, yet there is a reluctance to adopt that recruitment policy when it comes to head coaches for the national team. The FFR could afford to hire anyone they like, yet they chose once again to look inwards. The mess doesn’t end there either. The FFR are pursuing Noves and his staff for misconduct in the hope that they don’t have to pay out the full contracts. Still, at least the Top 14 is going well, which is all French rugby seems to care about.Elliot Dee citing was embarrassinglast_img read more

Praying to be ‘normal’

first_img Submit an Event Listing Rector Belleville, IL The Rev. Judith Jones, Vicar says: This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Rector Albany, NY Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Vivian Varela says: Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group By Viv TaylorPosted Aug 1, 2012 AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis August 1, 2012 at 9:59 pm Viv–Please visit my alma mater, Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge. You are called to ministry. If you are ever back in Western North Carolina, you are welcome to attend our Third Order of the Society of St. Francis Fellowship meeting in Asheville. EDS will also put you in touch with The Rev. Dr. Carter Heyward, who lives in Brevard. With love, just tupper, tssf Youth Minister Lorton, VA Press Release Service Laurie Eiserloh says: August 15, 2012 at 2:46 am Thank you for sharing your story Viv! Great to meet you at GC! Comments are closed. Featured Events Cathedral Dean Boise, ID miriam mckenney says: Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET Rector Shreveport, LA V. Tupper Morehead, MD, MDiv, TSSF says: Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Director of Music Morristown, NJ Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Rector Smithfield, NC Course Director Jerusalem, Israel August 2, 2012 at 1:16 pm Thank you, Viv – you have reminded me yet again why I am so glad to be an Episcopalian. Someone very, very close to me is working through some self-discovery – she’s glad she’s Episcopalian too. Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest [The Chapel Hill News] I grew up a Southern Baptist.That meant making a personal decision to follow Jesus, the right of all people to make their own choices about their beliefs. It meant my grandparents were missionaries; my great grandfather was a minister. It meant arguing about God with my Jewish best friend in elementary school. It meant a Savior I could talk to; whom I could tell I was actually a girl, to whom I could turn when I couldn’t turn to others.I joined my church’s youth group as a teenager. We met in the church’s basement. Our new youth minister was engaging and excited about the ministry. Instead of lots of cookouts and pool parties, we had retreats, books, and disciplines. Instead of a place to hang out, we had goals. There were lessons about the “proper” role of women, why evolution was wrong and dangerous, how to recognize signs of the end times, how to stop Abortion (not abortions, of course, that might have required mentioning condoms), and even how to evangelize to Mormons.Retreats were the program’s cornerstone. There were weeklong camps at colleges in western North Carolina. One sticks in my memory. It was the summer before my senior year of high school. Some of that week was wonderful: games, picking up trash along the Catawba River, that first taste of a college’s freedom. Some of that week was less comfortable.There were a couple of hours a day for Praise and Worship. Flashing lights and pumping beats were meant to excite joy and engagement. It wasn’t the sort of theology one considered or discerned how to live into; it was the sort you shouted and sang back to folks doing the same.The retreat leader gave two sermons a day, all week long. They were the sort where you were encouraged to take notes for later study. The sermons were full of warnings about heroin use, child molestation, and murder all mixed up with talk about homosexuality, atheism, science, agnosticism and “liberalized” Christianity.Growing up, I prayed that God would allow me to be the girl I knew I was. As a teenager who took her religion seriously and wanted to commit to it deeply, I prayed that God would erase my knowledge and understanding that I was a woman. I prayed to be “normal.” But, even then, there was a part of me sitting back. I knew who I was; I desperately wanted to be out, accepted, and loved, living in truth.One night near the end of the week, the preacher started hammering away at those felt called to ministry. “If you find yourself feeling any attraction to someone of the same sex, or have any questions about your gender identity,” he warned, “stay away from ministry; it doesn’t need you. Until you take care of it, you’re a liability.”After the sermon, we were told there were ministers waiting at the back of the auditorium if we needed to confess anything, if we needed to ask for forgiveness and pray with someone.I got up and walked to the back of the room, tears running down my face. A young seminarian put his hand on my back and asked if I wanted to step into another room to talk. We walked down the hall to an empty classroom.So what’s going on, he asked.I think I’m gay, I said. I knew I wasn’t exactly gay, but it felt close and easier to explain. The seminarian didn’t look surprised or angry like I had expected, just heartbroken.At first he sounded scripted, asking if I was looking at pornography online or was involved with anyone. Then, he stopped and looked at how upset and scared I was. Look, he said, are you going to hurt yourself?If I could dig it out or burn it out I probably would, I told him.He looked so scared. Hurting yourself won’t change anything, he told me; hurting yourself can’t make anything better. God loves you. God loves what He made.The seminarian said these things quietly, in a frightened voice, as if he was slipping a starving person contraband bread. We prayed. And I went back to my group.I never knew his name. Still, even though he was conflicted, maybe as deeply as I was, he came through and was a minister, someone who did Christ’s work of love and acceptance in the world. In the years since, I’ve left the Baptists, but I’ve never left that moment of knowing that whatever I might be, I am loved by both my Creator and many of my sisters and brothers in this world. That’s made all the difference.–– Viv Taylor graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill, served as a chaplain’s assistant in Iraq and wrote about the experience as Sam Taylor for The Chapel Hill News from 2010-12. This is the first in a series of new columns about her transgender journey and is reprinted here with the author’s permission. Taylor is a member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Brookline, Massachusetts. New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books center_img Submit a Press Release The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Praying to be ‘normal’ Rector Pittsburgh, PA An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI Featured Jobs & Calls Curate Diocese of Nebraska Rector Tampa, FL Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York August 1, 2012 at 5:09 pm Nice job Viv. For people of God who are LGBT, telling our stories makes all the difference. Thanks for taking the time and having the courage. Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Rector Knoxville, TN Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Rector Bath, NC Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Rector Collierville, TN Comments (7) Rector Martinsville, VA August 1, 2012 at 8:18 pm Oh, Yes, Viv! God made you the way you are, and you are beautiful and perfect in God’s eyes. Love yourself as God does love you, as His/Her precious and beloved child. Thank you for sharing your story.I know it will help others who continue to feel guilt for something that is innate, and the way God made them, and you. May God bless and keep you! Rector Hopkinsville, KY Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Submit a Job Listing August 1, 2012 at 10:52 pm Viv–you may be interested in this program at EDS. If only all of us could be there for this program : see http://eds.edu/events/intersextransgendertheologiesThis will be held on Friday, Sept. 7, 2012. Harry Coverston says: V. Tupper Morehead, MD, MDiv, TSSF says: Rector Washington, DC Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 August 1, 2012 at 10:29 pm “If you find yourself feeling any attraction to someone of the same sex, or have any questions about your gender identity,” he warned, “stay away from ministry; it doesn’t need you. Until you take care of it, you’re a liability.”I find all the indefinite pronouns here very interesting. “It” doesn’t need you. What might that be? Until you take care of “it” you’re a liability. Take care of what? And what might that mean? And a liability to what?The worst part is that preachers and theologians make these kind of supposedly self-evident assertions all the time and no one calls them on it. Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Associate Rector Columbus, GA Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL last_img read more

La Obispa Primada y el obispo jubilado de Washington se…

first_img Rector Knoxville, TN Rector Collierville, TN Submit a Press Release [Episcopal News Service] La voz de la Obispa Primada, Katharine Jefferts Schori, es la última en unirse a la campaña ‘Horas  Contra el Odio’ [Hours Against Hate] 2012.El mensaje en vídeo de Jefferts Schori, que apareciera el 2 de agosto, resalta la “increíble diversidad” del mundo, la cual, dice ella, “como científica y persona de fe, creo que es una enorme bendición”, porque “cada uno de nosotros viene con un don diferente”.“Al mismo tiempo, hay una antigua tendencia humana a distinguirse de las personas a quienes uno percibe como ‘el otro’”, afirmó, añadiendo que tales distinciones pueden ser tanto una bendición para la otra persona, como una manera de permitirse ver al otro como a un enemigo.“Las personas de fe suelen ser llamadas a ver en el otro a un semejante”, apuntó. “Como cristianos, somos llamados a amar a nuestros enemigos, a percibir a todo ser humano como portador de la imagen de Dios”.Jefferts Schori dijo que la campaña es una invitación a cruzar las fronteras artificiales para encontrar amigos entre los otros, y unirse para hacer del mundo un lugar mejor.John Chane, obispo jubilado de la Diócesis de Washington, también colaboró con la campaña mediante un mensaje en vídeo en el canal de YouTube.La Iglesia Episcopal, en su recién concluida 77ª. Convención General,  adoptó una postura contra la intimidación, al pedir en la Resolución D022 “una respuesta de toda la Iglesia a la epidemia de intimidación, particularmente contra los que son percibidos como ‘diferentes’ por virtud de sus características económicas, étnicas, raciales o físicas, su filiación religiosa, su orientación e identidad sexuales y su expresión de género”.Farah Pandith, representante especial del Departamento de Estado de  EE.UU. ante las comunidades musulmanas, y Hannah Rosenthal, enviada especial para supervisar y combatir el antisemitismo, inauguraron la campaña en febrero de 2011 como una manera de “frenar el prejuicio y promover el respeto a través de las fronteras de la cultura, la religión, la tradición, la clase y el género”, según la página web del departamento.Las dos mujeres le piden a “los jóvenes de todo el mundo que dediquen su tiempo a frenar el odio —a hacer algo por aquellos que no se te parecen, que no oran como tú ni viven como tú”.“Le pedimos a la próxima generación que colabore en la edificación de un mundo más fuerte y más tolerante”, dijeron ellas en la página web. “Ningún grupo puede hacerlo por sí solo”.La campaña tiene una página de Facebook aquí.La secretaria de Estado Hillary Clinton dijo el 31 de julio que la campaña “ha provocado que jóvenes de todo el mundo se hayan comprometido a dedicar decenas de miles de horas a caminar en los zapatos de otra persona”. Y subrayó que [la campaña] se ha convertido en una de las iniciativas oficiales de las Olimpíadas de Londres.— Traducido por Vicente Echerri. Featured Events Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Rector Tampa, FL Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Rector Belleville, IL Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Featured Jobs & Calls Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Rector Smithfield, NC New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Press Release Service Associate Rector Columbus, GA Rector Hopkinsville, KY Rector Bath, NC Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK center_img Submit a Job Listing Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Rector Washington, DC Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA La Obispa Primada y el obispo jubilado de Washington se unen en campaña contra el odio Rector Martinsville, VA Submit an Event Listing Rector Pittsburgh, PA In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Director of Music Morristown, NJ Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Curate Diocese of Nebraska Youth Minister Lorton, VA Rector Albany, NY De la redacción de ENSPosted Aug 10, 2012 Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Rector Shreveport, LA Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS last_img read more

Reinventing ministry

first_img Rector Bath, NC Featured Events AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Director of Music Morristown, NJ Rector Hopkinsville, KY Comments are closed. Statements and opinions expressed in the articles and communications herein, are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of Episcopal News Service or the Episcopal Church. Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Submit an Event Listing In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Rector Smithfield, NC This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Press Release Service Submit a Job Listing Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET December 19, 2012 at 11:24 pm In EFM I was introduced to the fact that culture shapes the church, which I do believe to be a fact. Our culture has changed dramatically. That being true, how can we not expect the church to change? The presiding bishop said the heartbeat of the church is mission. But, what I hear most is the importance of the liturgy, music, and the need to get more young families. That’s not mission, that’s attempting to maintain the status quo. A major focus of church should be those outside the church, not just the people that are already there. The church should be about strengthening us to go out into the world to be the hands and feet of Christ, ministering to the needs of those we meet. Our churches should be transforming our lives–the way we live–so we can help others transform their lives by the love of God. We must wake up to the fact that we are all children of God. We should be working to connect one to another and to God in community, a community that is larger than one building or one congregation. Whether Christian, Muslim, Jew, or any other religion, we must seek community with one another. Rector Pittsburgh, PA Rector Knoxville, TN Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York By Dan WebsterPosted Dec 11, 2012 Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Reinventing ministry Rector Washington, DC Rector Shreveport, LA Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Youth Minister Lorton, VA Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Rector Martinsville, VA An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Rector Belleville, IL Rector Collierville, TN Comments (1) Rector Tampa, FL The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET John D. Andrews says: Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Curate Diocese of Nebraska Associate Rector Columbus, GA Rector Albany, NY Featured Jobs & Calls Submit a Press Release Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem The Rev. Canon Dan Webster[Episcopal News Service] I promise not to use the words “nimble” nor “entrepreneurial” in this commentary.  Both are overused even though folks using these descriptors are searching for ways to discuss how the church is – or must – change.Since the first century, the gospel has been enculturated for its generation and setting. It has found its way into the hearts of millions through stories and actions that meant something to those experiencing the gospel.New expressions of ministry are emerging throughout the Episcopal Church. Just as parish day schools or parish nursing programs were established to meet needs in communities, we now see other expressions of ministry that seek to spread Good News.An Episcopal congregation in a small Kansas town started “Laundry and Lattes” on Sunday nights at a local laundromat near the town’s community college. They offer free coffee to the mostly student clientele and even keep plenty of quarters on hand to make change. If it’s your birthday you get a free wash and dry compliments of St. John’s Episcopal Church, Parsons, Kansas.Harcourt Parish in Gambier, Ohio saw a need for guest housing in this rural town during parents’ weekend at Kenyon College. Given the shortage of hotel rooms they began offering “Harcourt Homestay @ Kenyon” and got listed on the college’s website for such occasions.  This ministry of hospitality matches visitors with parishioners who open their homes to the college community they serve.  The donations they receive from the guests contribute to the parish budget.When the parish of St. John’s in the Mt. Washington neighborhood of Baltimore discerned they could no longer pay the upkeep on their historic church building, the vestry voted to sell it.  They now worship in the chapel of a nearby former Methodist senior living center and  hope this decision will free up funds for outreach both locally and globallyThere are dozens more such examples of congregations thinking differently about how to spread the gospel.  We will learn about them over the next year or so from the Rev. Tom Brackett, our denominational missioner for fresh expressions of ministry, redevelopment and new church planting.  Throughout 2013 he will visit all nine provinces of our church, gathering data from similar examples of innovation.  I expect we’ll get a much better picture from his work of how the Holy Spirit is breaking through and reinventing ministry across The Episcopal Church.Whenever I lead vestry retreats I hear many lamentations about the current state of the church. We’d be a lot better off “if only we had more younger couples with children,” or, “if we had more casserole fundraisers.” Some actually believe we’d be better off if the church was “the way it used to be.”I’m certain of one thing.  We’re never going back to the way it was.We are living in a wonderful time of discovery.  We are experiencing many new opportunities, like so many of our forebears, to make the Good News of Jesus Christ relevant to our time.The Rev. Bob Edgar, former general secretary of the National Council of Churches and current president of Common Cause, used to say, “We are the leaders we’ve been waiting for. ”  I’m pretty sure he got that from June Jordan’s poem or from Alice Walker’s book, We Are the Ones We’ve Been Waiting For.But whatever, or whoever, inspired it, we are the Episcopalians we’ve been waiting for to help lead God’s church into a new and exciting Spirit-led future.— The Rev. Canon Dan Webster is canon for evangelism and ministry development in the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland.  He lives in Baltimore. Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI last_img read more

Presiding bishop’s Lent Message 2013

first_img February 5, 2013 at 12:58 am I thank you for your message. I wonder what you mean by “The violence in our country, the violence around the world is most often an act in response to those who don’t have enough. Those who are hungry, those who ache for recognition and dignity, those who struggle for peace.” Unless you have a different or a much more narrow definition of violence than I have witnessed before, I am not sure what you base the statement on. I think of poverty, especially hunger, as a form of violence in our world. I also consider the United States abuse of military power and abuse of world resources (environment), and laborers in the name of profits to be violent. Did you mean “to those who don’t have enough” or did you mean “by”. I know that violence does often accompany poverty, but it seems it more often accompanies greed. I am concerned that this kind of one sided presentation of violence helps to dehumanize or even demonize especially the very poor. I am not saying that you do this, but this kind of talk which either is lacking in definition or is lacking truth. An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Doug Desper says: Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET Cathy Kincaid says: Rector Washington, DC Rector Hopkinsville, KY Bill Demerath-Shanti says: Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Rector Belleville, IL Presiding bishop’s Lent Message 2013 ‘Learn more, give alms, share what you have’ February 6, 2013 at 5:15 pm Bill, you are very naive if you think that violence does not accompany poverty. Look at the world’s terrorists who started out just grabbing for more than they had. Bitter poverty mkes young men hard. Read “The Good Earth” by Pearl Buck, and try to understand the part that says : “There is a way when the rich are too rich, and there is a way when the poor are too poor.” Selling a child is as much an act of violence as charging a rich man’s house. This is not demonizing the poor, it’s just accepting reality. What would you not do for your starving child or parent? The poverty itself is violent. Oppression breeds violence. The bishop’e message demonizes those who will not share, and those who stand by and watch bad things happen. Poverty is a very bad thing. Bill Demerath-Shanti says: Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Press Release Service Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC February 6, 2013 at 8:05 pm I would hasten to suggest that Jesus would be a good example to learn from during Lent. Those among us who recommend “doing” may want to first practice Christ-like “being” in order to live among the principalities and powers. External disciplines such as sharing and self-restraint naturally flow from a soul grounded in dependence, trust, and contentment in God’s purposes. Yes, I think that we should not fail to mention that Jesus would make a fine example to learn from during Lent. Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Tags TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Featured Events February 24, 2013 at 4:35 pm God is for Joy:God is with usIs the hope of all religious faith; hope based on Sacred Scripture read through the lips of our heart, so spoken to listen.God likes us to remember His Name, Holy Name for he who knows it is Holy;God is withinis the real start of Heaven Reality described by this premie of Maharaji as a welcome an invitation to enter Gods Heart from pyaying in yours to Jesus the Lord“I in them You in Me that they may be made perfect in one.( John 17 verse 23). God is revealedis the true Knowledge of His LovePraise him in each Cathedral.God is for Joy. Rector Tampa, FL An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET February 11, 2013 at 10:09 am Regarding laws around the country which specifically target the poor: http://www.alternet.org/2-years-jail-sitting-milk-crate-shocking-ways-america-punishes-poor-people-living-street-hard-times?page=0%2C0&akid=10033.1089362.B1pvih&rd=1&src=newsletter791760&t=7 New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Submit an Event Listing Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Posted Feb 4, 2013 [Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori presents a challenge in her Lent Message 2013 to pray, fast, study and give alms.“As you engage this Lent, I would encourage you to pray, to fast, to act in solidarity with those who go without,” she offers. “Learn more, give alms, share what you have.”The Presiding Bishop’s video message, filmed at a park in New York City, is available here.The following is the text of the Presiding Bishop’s message.Lent Message, 2013I wish you a blessed Lent.Lent is the ancient season of preparation. Preparation for Baptism at the Easter Vigil and it’s a season of solidarity with those who are being formed to be disciples of Jesus and missionaries in God’s mission.We form people in a sense that God dreams of a healed world, a world restored to peace with justice, and some of the ancient images of that healed world are those of the prophets. One of the famous ones from Isaiah is an image of people having a picnic on a mountainside, enjoying rich food and well-aged wine. That image of being well-fed is particularly poignant in a world like ours where so many go hungry.Lent is a time when we pray, when we fast, when we study, when we give alms. It’s a time of solidarity and it is particularly a time to be in solidarity with the least of these.As you prepare for your Lenten season and your Lenten discipline, I’d encourage you to think about consciousness in eating. That’s really more what fasting is about than giving up chocolate. Being conscious of what you eat, standing in solidarity with those who are hungry, whether it is for food, or shelter, or peace, or dignity, or recognition, or for love.When we stand in solidarity in terms of eating, we might consider what we are eating and how we are eating it and with whom we are eating, and I’d invite you to consider some of the challenges that are around us. Many leaders in this United States part of the church have engaged in an act of solidarity with the poor by trying to live on a food stamp budget for a week. That’s about $4 a person per day. And it’s very, very difficult to find adequate calories and reasonably nutritious food for that kind of a budget. But it would be an act of solidarity with those who do go without every day and every week. An act of solidarity like that might increase your consciousness about those who go hungry, it might increase your own consciousness about what you eat, and it might provide an opportunity to share some of your largesse, some of what you save from that kind of eating with those who go without.The violence in our country, the violence around the world is most often an act in response to those who don’t have enough. Those who are hungry, those who ache for recognition and dignity, those who struggle for peace.Your and my preparation for the great Easter festival can be an act of solidarity with the least of these. As you engage this Lent, I would encourage you to pray, to fast, to act in solidarity with those who go without. Learn more, give alms, share what you have. Be conscious about what you eat.A blessed, blessed Lent this year.The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts SchoriPresiding Bishop and PrimateThe Episcopal Church Submit a Press Release Submit a Job Listing stewart david wigdor says: Bill Demerath-Shanti says: Rector Knoxville, TN Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Youth Minister Lorton, VA Comments are closed. Associate Rector Columbus, GA Curate Diocese of Nebraska Rector Bath, NC Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Director of Music Morristown, NJ Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Rector Collierville, TN This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Rector Shreveport, LA Rector Albany, NY Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Rector Pittsburgh, PA Comments (7) Cathedral Dean Boise, ID The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group February 4, 2013 at 5:00 pm re: food stamp budget number. Try a month on $16.00. Lent, Rector Smithfield, NC Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET February 7, 2013 at 1:48 pm I think you misunderstood what I wrote. I do know violence accompanies poverty and we agree that poverty itself is violence. But that violence “is most often and act in response to those who don’t have enough” is what I am not understanding, and I am concerned could be interpreted as meaning those in poverty are the perpetrators of most violence. Many in this country are already afraid of homeless people and the poor which has only made the situation worse. Others who are not are threatened with or have been arrested, maced, etc. for feeding homeless people. New laws in some counties and states make it illegal to feed the poor here in our country. Sorry if I was not clear in my comment: it seems you think I intended to attack the content of her message, thank you for pointing that out because I meant to be asking for clarity. In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Featured Jobs & Calls Rector Martinsville, VA Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Catherine Windsor says: Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MIlast_img read more

Deirdre Good appointed academic dean of General Seminary

first_imgDeirdre Good appointed academic dean of General Seminary Posted Aug 27, 2013 Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Featured Events Curate Diocese of Nebraska An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group Rector Smithfield, NC Rector Washington, DC Rector Collierville, TN Rector Martinsville, VA Rector Bath, NC Rector Hopkinsville, KY New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Theological Education Submit a Press Release Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Featured Jobs & Calls Tags Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Rector Tampa, FL Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Associate Rector Columbus, GA Rector Belleville, IL Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Youth Minister Lorton, VA TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab [The General Theological Seminary press release] Dr. Deirdre Good, Professor of New Testament at The General Theological Seminary, has been appointed as Academic Dean beginning this school year. This new position grows out of the former position of Sub-Dean and will play a leadership role in General Seminary’s academic programs. As Academic Dean, Prof. Good will focus on both current and future systems as General Seminary develops the way it educates and forms leaders for a changing church and a changing world. While undertaking her new responsibilities, Prof. Good will continue her teaching and research as Professor of New Testament.In a letter to the community announcing the appointment, the Very Rev. Kurt H. Dunkle, Dean and President of The General Theological Seminary states, “Ensuring that we are envisioning and offering the highest caliber academic programs to prepare both lay and to-be ordained leaders for the church is of the highest priority.  Further, as we begin to unfold how the future of seminary education and formation will look at General, the right balance of academics and practical training will be key. I am so pleased to partner with Professor Good in this adventure.” Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Submit a Job Listing Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Rector Pittsburgh, PA Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Rector Knoxville, TN An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Director of Music Morristown, NJ Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Rector Shreveport, LA Submit an Event Listing This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Rector Albany, NY Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs People, The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Press Release Servicelast_img read more