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May 24, 2011

Cancer is Sickening

by Rev. A. J. Iovine

I’ve just been swamped – church work, studying, cancer treatments that wear me out, church planning, and general non-specific writing.

Oh, did I mention that I’ve been “a little under the weather” because of my cancer treatments?

Yes, instead of trying to pull the wool over everyone’s eyes, my cancer treatments have been making me sick. Even this morning, after stumbling out of bed at 5:04am (yes, I stumbled when I tripped over one of my shoes I left bedside instead of putting both of them in the closet last night), I was thankful for indoor plumbing. Honestly, being sick because of chemo is never a great way to start the day.

After my little tripping incident and kneeling at the porcelein throne, the rest of the day – so far – has been normal. I like coming over to church at 7am for Morning Prayer. It forces me to redirect my thoughts onto a spiritual plain, looking for strength from my God in heaven. Even though my prayer this morning was a little convoluted and all over the place (something about praying without notes after being sick, I guess), I know God understood because the Holy Spirit took my groans and confusing paragraph structure and brought them to the Father through the Son and He made sense of it.

That is something about prayer — we don’t have to be great orators in order to pray. All we have to do is to just pray; God knows what we need and want and He’ll answer our prayers in His blessed way.

Even though my prayer didn’t make a lot sense this morning, God understood and He will answer.

I’m going to be spending most of day doing two things:

1. Working in either the church or home office. I need to prepare this coming weekend’s worship services; arrange next week’s circuit-wide evening Ascension Divine Service; prepare my calendar for the week and update the church’s website with our new calendar and this past weekend’s announcements; outline tomorrow night’s continuing bible study on Job; and re-arrange my church office, a bit.

2. I will be headed over to Yonkers, NY to visit my brother, who is in the hospital again. He has this on-going gastro-intestinal issue that may require some major surgery to correct.

One of my important Getting Things Done goals for Tuesday is to write more. A couple of my “cancer buddies” said that during the past week, I haven’t written enough here on the blog. One of them told me yesterday that he likes my “irreverent look at the day’s events” and was actually sad that I didn’t write about the end of world prophecy from Harold Camping.

In a nutshell, and in the most possible pastoral way this New Yorker turned New Jerseyan can say it, Camping is nuts. I feel sorry for those people who followed this huckster over the cliff. In Sunday morning’s New York Post, my heart actually felt bad for that retired MTA worker who spent $140,000 of his own money to advertise May 21st as being “the end of the world as we know it” (since those words come from an R.E.M. song, I thought I would at least put them in quotes). Standing there in Time Square as the moments ticked away after the 6pm Rapture deadline, this guy looked confused and lost. He was completely perplexed as to why the prophecy from the wacho in San Francisco didn’t come true. He spent all of his money because of the rantings of a liar who carried a bible.

Shame on Harold Camping.

And now, he says that he was actually off a few months on his May 21st prediction – now he’s moved it to October 21st, the date he said the world was going to explode after the five month post-Rapture period. If anyone wants to send any kind of money to Family Radio to support this guy, then please reconsider. Send it to the charities who are doing the Lord’s work, helping those in Missouri, the Midwest, and the South who have been devestated by tornadoes, wicked weather, and flooding.

In fact, even if you’re not thinking of sending money to prop up that hoax Harold Camping, consider sending a donation to LCMS World Relief and Human Care.



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