June 12 - 25, 2006 
 Weekly News In Review
 Vol 1, Issue 48
In This Issue
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The Weekly News In Review Newsletter is a compilation of the news articles that have appeared on the Understand The Times website during the previous week.

 June 11, 2006 - I've found God, says man who cracked the genome
 Article: Creation/Evolution - Evidence for Creation

Spirit Daily - THE scientist who led the team that cracked the human genome is to publish a book explaining why he now believes in the existence of God and is convinced that miracles are real.

Francis Collins, the director of the US National Human Genome Research Institute, claims there is a rational basis for a creator and that scientific discoveries bring man "closer to God".

His book, The Language of God, to be published in September, will reopen the age-old debate about the relationship between science and faith. "One of the great tragedies of our time is this impression that has been created that science and religion have to be at war," said Collins, 56.

"I don't see that as necessary at all and I think it is deeply disappointing that the shrill voices that occupy the extremes of this spectrum have dominated the stage for the past 20 years."

For Collins, unravelling the human genome did not create a conflict in his mind. Instead, it allowed him to "glimpse at the workings of God".

"When you make a breakthrough it is a moment of scientific exhilaration because you have been on this search and seem to have found it," he said. "But it is also a moment where I at least feel closeness to the creator in the sense of having now perceived something that no human knew before but God knew all along."

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 June 13, 2006 - Olmert: I won't divide Jerusalem or give away Temple Mount
 Article: Israel and the Last Days

 Speaking publicly for the first time about the future of Jerusalem, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told Jewish community leaders in London on Monday that he had no intention of dividing the capital or giving away sovereignty of the Temple Mount.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair refrained earlier Monday from endorsing Olmert's plan for a unilateral withdrawal, calling instead for a "negotiated two-state solution," to the Middle East conflict, something which he said the world agreed upon.

Olmert said Monday after talks with Blair that Israel is "prepared to pull out from most" of the West Bank and create a "contiguous" Palestinian state.

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 June 13, 2006 - US bans four Chinese companies for aiding Iran
 Article: Israel and the Last Days

The United States on Tuesday prohibited all transactions with four Chinese companies and one US company for allegedly helping Iran acquire weapons of mass destruction and missiles capable of delivering them.

"The companies targeted today have supplied Iran's military and Iranian proliferators with missile-related and dual-use components," said Stuart Levey, undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the US Treasury.

He urged governments worldwide to take appropriate measures to ensure that their companies and financial institutions are not facilitating Iran's proliferation activities.

Three of the Chinese companies are Bejing Alite Technologies Company, Ltd; LIMMT Economic and Trade Company, Ltd and Great Wall Industry Corporation.

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 June 14, 2006 - Noah's Ark, Pieces Intact, Found in Iran by Bible Explorers
 Article: Biblical Archaeology

Wash-June 14-KIN-On June 5th, Bible Historian and explorer Bob Cornuke led an expedition of 15 geologists, historians, archeologists, scientists and attorneys on an exhausting mission 13,300 feet above sea level to locate and document the tremendous sections of what is thought to be Noah's Ark located in the Ararat mountain range six hours North of Tehran, Iran. It had been essentially buried beneath the preservation of glaciers until last year when Iran recorded the hottest year on record which melted some of the snowcap revealing 450 by 75- foot footprint of the "object."

Noah's Ark was claimed to be found in Northern Iran rather than Turkey. Over a thousand expeditions had previously scoured Turkey's Mt. Ararat, but by following the precise language of the Bible, Cornuke found what is believed to be Noah's Ark, nearly in tact. Turkey's Mt. Ararat was incorrect because Marco Polo named the large mountain during his journeys in the 13th century. Through mapping scriptures in Genesis with ancient maps, Cornuke pieced together the clues and found where the Ararat Mountain Range made home for Noah's Ark in Northern Iran not far from Turkey. Bob Cornuke has been at the center of several controversies over his past findings as he has come at odds with secular scholars, but several people who I know personally were on this expedition as well as some credible, internationally known heads of Christian ministries. Cornuke and the participants are careful to not say emphatically that they found Noah's Ark, but have taken extensive documentation to present their facts for both the public, and the Biblical and scientific communities.

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 Alert: June 15, 2006 - Pope leads Corpus Christi procession through Rome
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

In a brief but profound meditation on the Eucharist, delivered as his homily during a Mass for the feast of Corpus Christ, Pope Benedict XVI said that the transubstantiation of "poor man's bread" into the Body of Christ is both a "synthesis of creation" and a means by which "creation is raised to the divine."

At an evening Mass celebrated in the plaza outside the basilica of St. John Lateran, the Holy Father spoke about the significance of the bread used in the Eucharist. The celebrant refers to this bread as "fruit of the earth and work of human hands," he noted. That phrase acknowledges that man's work is involved in making bread, but also that man relies on God for his substances, since "the fact that earth bears fruit is the work of God, not anything man has done."

The bread of the Eucharist comes from the earth, the Pope continued, but it also comes from God. And in the Sacrifice of the Mass this bread-- food that is accessible even to the poorest of men-- provides an encounter between lowly man and his almighty Creator.

Contemplating this ordinary bread, the Pope said, the believer is "struck with awe at the way in which Jesus transforms his host into his very Self." At the same time, the Eucharist draws together all of the faithful, sharing the same supernatural food, united in Christ's Body.

As he closed his homily, the Holy Father looked forward to the Eucharistic procession that he would lead, from St. John Lateran up the Via Merulana to the basilica of St. Mary Major. The procession itself speaks of the wish of the faithful, to follow after Jesus Christ, he said. He asked participants to join in prayer that God would "lead the Church and her pastors on the right path."

The traditional Corpus Christi procession ended with Benediction at St. Mary Major. The feast day is celebrated in Rome each year on the Thursday following Trinity Sunday. Vatican offices were closed on June 15 in observance of the holy day.

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 June 16, 2006 - Ducklike Fossil Points to Aquatic Origins for Modern Birds
 Article: Creation / Evolution - Evidence for Creation

Modern birds--the rulers of the sky--appear to have gotten their start in the water, scientists say. The fresh insights derive from the fossilized remains of a bird that lived some 110 million years ago and was preserved in the soft muddy bottom of an ancient lake in what is now the Gansu province of northwestern China. The amphibious, ducklike creature--named Gansus yumenensis--is the oldest known member of the so-called ornithuran group that includes modern birds.

(Note from UTT: In our opinion this article does not support the Darwinian evolution idea - birds have always been birds - some in the past were aquatic in the past and some are now - some were not aquatic in the past and some are not now).

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 June 16, 2006 - Father Cantalamessa on Corpus Christi
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

I believe that the most necessary thing to do on the feast of Corpus Christi is not to explain some aspect of the Eucharist, but to revive wonder and marvel before the mystery.

The feast was born in Belgium, in the early 13th century; Benedictine monasteries were the first to adopt it. Urban IV extended it to the whole Church in 1264; it seems that he was also influenced by the Eucharistic miracle of Bolsena, venerated today in Orvieto.

...In fact, Corpus Christi is the first feast whose object is not an event of the life of Christ, but a truth of faith: His real presence in the Eucharist. It responds to a need: to solemnly proclaim such faith.

It is needed to avoid the danger of getting used to such a presence and no longer pay attention to it, thus meriting the reproach that St. John the Baptist made to his contemporaries: "In your midst stands one whom you do not know!"

...In the early times of the Church, at the moment of communion a cry resounded in the assembly: "Let him who is holy approach, let him who is not repent!"

One who did not get used to the Eucharist and spoke of it with overwhelming wonder was St. Francis of Assisi. "Let humanity fear, let the entire universe tremble, and the heavens exult, when on the altar, in the hands of the priest, is Christ, son of the living God. ... O admirable rapture and amazing designation! O sublime humility! O humble sublimity, that the Lord of the universe, God and son of God, so humbles himself as to hide under the small appearance of bread!"

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 June 17, 2006 -Rosaries cross religious boundaries
 Article: Ecumenical Movement

Episcopalian-created version of prayer beads becoming more commonplace. Since the earliest times, people have used pebbles or a string of knots or beads on a cord to keep track of prayers. Some form of a rosary or prayer beads can be found in virtually every major religious tradition in the world. The Episcopalians are no exception, though their rosary or prayer beads are relatively new.

"The Anglican rosary was designed in the 1980s by the Rev. Lynn Bauman," said Kristin Kent of St. Anne Episcopal Church in De Pere. "It is smaller than the traditional Catholic rosary, but holds just as much symbolism."

"It can be used in many different ways," said the Rev. Mary Lynn Adams, a deacon at St. Anne's. "The Catholic rosary has a set format for meditation. The Anglican beads are more contemplative. You can use it as structured prayer, or as a framework for your own prayers. You can say a thank you on each bead if you want, or pray for someone. It's a beautiful thing. It's a pleasure to pray."

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 June 18, 2006 - Gay parade draws 2.4 million
 Article: Perilous Times

SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) -- More than 2 million gay men, lesbians and transvestites waving rainbow flags and dressed in lavish Carnival costumes paraded Saturday to celebrate gay pride and demand an end to homophobia.

The 10th annual Sao Paulo Gay Pride Parade saw go- go boys and drag queens dancing on the roofs of sound trucks blasting music as they rolled down the skyscraper-lined Avenida Paulista -- the financial heart of Brazil's biggest city.

Organizers boast Sao Paulo's pride parade is the largest of its kind on the planet. Police said the parade drew 2.4 million people, far more than last year's official crowd count of 1.8 million.

The theme of this year's event was to halt hate crimes against gays in the nation of more than 185 million people. But in typical Brazilian style, participants turned a somber topic into a huge street party, dancing, drinking beer and kissing as they marched several kilometers.

Some dressed as Batman. Others turned themselves into Elvis Presley, Cinderella, U.S. Marines, Marie Antoinette and the lead characters of the movie "Brokeback Mountain" about two gay cowboys.

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 June 18, 2006 - On the Eucharist - "'Treasure' of the Church"
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 18, 2006 (Zenit.org).- Here is a translation of Benedict XVI's address today at midday, before and after reciting the Angelus with the crowds gathered in St. Peter's Square.
* * *

Dear Brothers and Sisters:
Today, in Italy and in other countries, the solemnity of Corpus Christi is being celebrated, which already had its intense moment in Rome in the city's procession on Thursday.
It is the solemn and public feast of the Eucharist, sacrament of the body and blood of Christ: On this day, the mystery instituted in the Last Supper and commemorated every year on Holy Thursday, is presented to all, surrounded by the faith and devotion of the ecclesial community.

The Eucharist is, in fact, the "treasure" of the Church, the precious heritage that her Lord has left her. And the Church guards this heritage with the greatest care, celebrating it daily in the holy Mass, adoring it in churches and chapels, distributing it to the sick, and as viaticum to those on their last journey.
However, this treasure, which is destined for those who are baptized, does not exhaust its radius of action in the ambit of the Church: the Eucharist is the Lord Jesus who gives himself "for the life of the world" (John 6:51). At all times and in all places, he wishes to encounter man and give him God's life.

And not only this -- the Eucharist also has cosmic value: The transformation of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ constitutes, in fact, the principle of divinization of creation itself. This is why the feast of Corpus Christi is characterized particularly by the tradition of carrying the Blessed Sacrament in procession, a gesture full of meaning.

By carrying the Eucharist through the streets and squares, we wish to submerge the bread descended from heaven in the everyday of our lives; we want Jesus to walk where we walk; to live where we live. Our world, our lives, must become his temple.

...Mary is the "Eucharistic woman," as Pope John Paul II described her in his encyclical "Ecclesia de Eucharistia." Let us pray to the Virgin that all Christians may deepen their faith in the Eucharistic mystery, so that they live in constant communion with Jesus and are his valid witnesses.

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 June 19, 2006 - Exploring a Catholic rite
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

Newsday Staff Writer

The Diocese of Rockville Centre wrapped up a series of special events aimed at rekindling Catholic faith on Long Island yesterday with a Mass at St. Agnes Cathedral, where Cardinal Edward Egan of New York offered a vivid lesson in the meaning of one of the church's central rituals.

"Our God is present on that altar -- body, blood, soul and divinity," Egan said, referring to the ritual of the Eucharist, in which worshipers consume consecrated bread and wine that Catholic theology holds to be the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ.

As he spoke to the 1,200 worshipers packed into the Rockville Centre church, Egan did not shy away from the difficulties he said the more graphic aspects of these beliefs may present to newcomers. Egan said Christ in his time was "fiercely clear" in offering followers "his flesh to eat and his blood to drink.

"Many in the crowd who heard this in his early public life were perhaps disgusted," Egan said. "Even some of his disciples found it hard to take."

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 June 19, 2006 - New US church leader says homosexuality no sin
 Article: Perilous Times

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Newly elected leader of the U.S. Episcopal Church Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said on Monday she believed homosexuality was no sin and homosexuals were created by God to love people of the same gender.

Jefferts Schori, bishop of the Diocese of Nevada, was elected on Sunday as the first woman leader of the 2.3 million-member Episcopal Church. the U.S. branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion. She will formally take office later this year.

Interviewed on CNN, Jefferts Schori was asked if it was a sin to be homosexual.

"I don't believe so. I believe that God creates us with different gifts. Each one of us comes into this world with a different collection of things that challenge us and things that give us joy and allow us to bless the world around us," she said.

"Some people come into this world with affections ordered toward other people of the same gender and some people come into this world with affections directed at people of the other gender."

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 June 18, 2006 - Catholics renew commitment to faith at College Park gathering (Annual Eucharistic Conference)
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
With more than 20,000 Catholics gathered south of Atlanta for the Archdiocese of Atlanta's Eucharistic Congress, it might be safe to assume that Father Roderick Vonhögen is in the running to get the prize for the person who came the farthest.

..."People are coming by car, buses, carpooling, just to be here and be inspired by Catholic speakers from all over the country and the world," said Corbett, adding that speakers focused on the theme of the Eucharist, or Communion.

"A day like today can have an impact on all of us as individuals, as a parish and as an archdiocese community," Corbett added.

Corbett said there are 150,000 registered Catholic families in North Georgia, but he estimates there are several hundred thousand who are nonregistered, but active Catholics.

"I come here every year, and it always feels like something new," said Danny Huynh, 18, of Lawrenceville. "You feel like you are enlightened. And, as a young person, we are the church. I invite all of my friends. Especially those who are trying to find themselves in the faith, like me."

..."The word Catholic means universal," said the Rev. Ricardo Bailey of the Holy Spirit Catholic Church, who is better known as "Father Crunk" for his penchant for weaving hip-hop and Hollywood into his messages. "When the people come together, we are very diverse in the language and in our way of life. The church celebrates tha

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 June 18, 2006 - Mixing animal, human cells gets exotic
 Article: Cloning and Genetic Engineering

SAN FRANCISCO - On the sun-splashed Caribbean island of St. Kitts, Yale University researchers are injecting millions of human brain cells into the heads of monkeys afflicted with Parkinson's disease.

In China, there are 29 goats running around on a farm with human cells coursing through their organs, a result of scientists dropping human blood cells into goat embryos.

The mixing of humans and animals in the name of medicine has been going on for decades. People are walking around with pig valves in their hearts and scientists have routinely injected human cells into lab mice to mimic diseases.

But the research is becoming increasingly exotic as scientists work with the brains of mice, monkeys and other mammals and begin fiddling with the hot-button issue of cloning. Harvard University researchers are attempting to clone human embryonic cells in rabbit eggs.

Find out more.... 

 June 16, 2006 - Eucharist Is "Bread From Heaven," Says Pope
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

ROME, JUNE 16, 2006 (Zenit.org).- The Eucharist is the "bread from heaven," in which God gives himself to men as food, said Benedict XVI on the feast of Corpus Christi.

The Holy Father, continuing a tradition that John Paul II reinstated in 1979, celebrated the Mass of the feast of Corpus Christi on Thursday at the Basilica of St. John Lateran, and led the Eucharistic procession along Via Merulana to the Basilica of St. Mary Major.

"The Host is the manna with which the Lord nourishes us, it is truly the bread from heaven, with which he really gives himself," Benedict XVI said during the homily.

In the homily the Pope meditated on the symbolism of the bread, the "white Host," the "bread of the poor," "the simplest form of bread and food, made simply with some flour and water," "synthesis of creation," because in the Host "heaven and earth are united, as well as man's activity and spirit."

..."Make us understand that only through participation in your Passion, through the 'yes' of the cross, of denial, of the purifications that you impose on us, our lives can mature and reach their authentic fulfillment."

...The Holy Father boarded a small white vehicle to kneel in adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, which was exposed in a large monstrance.


Find out more.... 

 June 23, 2006 - Earth warmest in at least 400 years, panel finds
 Article: Signs of the Last Times

Weighing in on the highest profile debate about global warming, the nation's premier science policy body on Thursday voiced a "high level of confidence" that Earth is the hottest it has been in at least 400 years, and possibly even the last 2,000 years.

A panel convened by the National Research Council reached that conclusion in a broad review of scientific studies, reporting that the evidence indicates "recent warmth is unprecedented for at least the last 400 years."

The panel of top climate scientists told lawmakers that the Earth is running a fever and that "human activities are responsible for much of the recent warming." Their 155-page report said average global surface temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere rose about 1 degree F during the 20th century.

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 June 23, 2006 - Marian chapel coexists near sacred Hindu temple
 Article: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days

Meena Joshi's father- in-law was livid when a Marian chapel was built close to a temple in Varanasi, a city Hindus consider sacred.

The orthodox Brahmin fought a protracted court case against the Queen of Apostles nuns, who opened Maria Dham (Mary's abode) in 1978 near the temple dedicated to Vishwanath (lord of the universe). But by the time he died in 1999 at the age of 86, Keshari Narayan Joshi had not only withdrawn the case but also become one of the nuns' most ardent admirers, Meena says.

According to Sister Shyamala, one of the Maria Dham founders, who stays in an adjacent convent, they hear many similar stories. Speaking with UCA News, she said the local Hindus have accepted them as "part and parcel of the spiritual culture and heritage of this holiest Hindu land." Varanasi, along the Ganges, is 780 kilometers east of New Delhi.

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 June 25, 2006 - Mt. Bulusan threatens major eruption soon
 Article: Signs of the Last Times

By RHAYDZ B. BARCIA, The Manila Times Correspondent

LEGASPI CITY - The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) warned Friday that the eruption of Mount Bulusan in Sorsogon could prove hazardous to residents within the area. According to the government volcanologist Alex Baloloy, this is due to the frequency and increase in strength of Wednesday's explosion.

In a press briefing held at the Office of Civil Defense in Bicol, Baloloy said that the last major eruption of Mount Bulusan took place in the 17th century.

"A possible magmatic or hazardous eruption might occur like that of Mount Pinatubo," he said.

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We hope the Weekly News In Review has been a blessing to you.

In Jesus,
Roger Oakland

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