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Whether the magnificent Battleship Texas was steaming into foreign ports or she was engaged in one of the many battles she fought through several wars, its special Stars and Stripes flew high above her deck. That 17 by 9-foot flag let both friends and enemies know that she was on station and…

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In 2010 two men made very different choices. In Austin, Texas Joseph Stack, bitter and irate about the IRS, set fire to his home, drove to the Georgetown airport and took off in a single engine Piper Cherokee. Minutes later, in a suicide crash reminiscent of 9-11, he slammed the plane into t…

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You needn’t be BOI or a native Texan to realize that some in our Lone Star State will claim that anything of timeless importance either began here, or that it is done better here than anywhere else.

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Over the years in this space, you’ve met chaplains serving in the military, police, fire and hospital settings as well as those ministering in hospices and jails. The need remains for more clergy, active and retired, to take the special training required and to volunteer to serve in any of t…

Looking for a place to worship? Visit our extensive listing of Galveston County congregations online.
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If you’ve ever heard of a faith-based non-profit that was so flush with cash that it didn’t need a donation, or one that had all the volunteers and equipment that it desired to further its mission, then you have found a true outlier.

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When I married my wife, we repeated the customary wedding vows promising to cherish one another “in sickness and in health, in poverty and in wealth.” Perhaps we should have added an additional line. Something like. “I promise to wait for you.” Since we married we have waited for each other.…

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The fictional-for-now Our Faith Trolley now takes you to two historic churches this week as it wends round our island’s historic sanctuaries. Our goal is to share the richness of our island’s faith traditions, beginning with some of the oldest houses of worship here.

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There is a particular word in the Bible that is seldom heard in church although it is widely used in private and public conversations. We hear it almost every day. Some use it for emphasis or exclamation such as “What the h—?” or “h— no!” or “h— yes!” Sometimes it appears to be a measurement…

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According to a recent Pew Research Center report, the religious landscape in America has experienced a sizeable shift in recent decades. As recently as 1990, 90 percent of Americans identified themselves as Christian. The United States, as a whole, viewed itself as a “Christian nation.” Toda…

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You know a lot about church architecture already. You’ve seen, almost daily, examples of High Victorian Gothic art in the works of our legendary local genius Nicholas Clayton. From First Presbyterian to Sacred Heart Catholic Church to many more, his designs embodied the Medieval goal of buil…

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You won’t find Oktoberfest on any liturgical calendar. There’s no church ritual assigned to it, but it has become a staple for Lutherans everywhere and no more than for those of us here on the island.

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Exoplanets are planets that orbit a star other than our sun. As of this month, scientists have identified 5,197 exoplanets in the universe. There are doubtless many, many more. Every star is expected to have at least one planet. With 200 billion stars in the Milky Way the number is, well, as…

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Carl Sandburg, in his biography of Abraham Lincoln, described the young man in 1831. “Abraham Lincoln, 22 years old, floated down the Sangamon River, going to a new home, laughter and youth in his bones, in his heart a few pennies of dreams, in his head a rag bag of thoughts he could never e…

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Church buildings don’t spring into existence from the ether. Whether the work of Medieval draftsman, our local favorite Nicholas Clayton or from very contemporary concepts, church architecture is always in flux.

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The State Fair of Texas opens this week, Sept. 28 through Oct. 23. I started visiting the State Fair when I was a kid, wandering the sprawling grounds that circle the Cotton Bowl, birthplace of the Cowboys, site of the Texas OU shootout. There is always something about the State Fair. Maybe …

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Five centuries ago, an art form that had prospered for several hundred years died out. The illuminated Bibles of the 12th to 17th centuries may have been inspired by both sunlight streaming through monastery windows and by the painstaking work of ancient Jewish scribes.

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Our fictional Our Faith Trolley stops at two Orthodox churches this week. The Eastern Orthodox tradition often claims to be the oldest and original Christian Church, as does the Roman Catholic Church. The two parted ways in what was called the Great Schism of in 1054 A.D.

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Prayer is often our last resort, the final step in a hopeless situation. We refer to it with such phrases as “he doesn’t have a prayer,” or “there is nothing left to do but pray.” But it is perhaps the most important aspect of our human condition.