USA: volunteering more popular than voting

USA: volunteering more popular than voting About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving. A Harvard University study reports more young people prefer to volunteer locally than to vote. The study, reported by VolunteerMatch’s October Volunteer Newsletter, found that “85% of people between the ages of 18 and 24 preferred volunteering in their communities to voting for political candidates.” VolunteerMatch concluded that “this report states that young people feel they are making a greater difference in their community by volunteering than by voting.” Howard Lake | 27 October 2000 | News Advertisement  12 total views,  1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis read more

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A new face at the Vatican

first_imgAfter a telltale release of white smoke and an hour of suspenseful fanfare, Vatican leaders on Wednesday announced the new head of the Roman Catholic Church: Jorge Mario Bergoglio, an Argentinian cardinal.The selection marks a shift for the 2,000-year-old institution. Bergoglio, 76, will become the first non-European pontiff and the first leader from the Jesuit order, known for its intellectual tradition and care for the poor. Bergoglio will be known as Pope Francis, named after the modest friar who also tended the poor and worked to re-instill energy into the church. The new pontiff succeeds Benedict XVI, who also made history, in his case by becoming the first pope in nearly 600 years to resign.Gazette reporters Katie Koch and Colleen Walsh spoke to Harvard professors familiar with the Vatican and its workings to gauge their thoughts on the 266th pope.J. Bryan Hehir is the Parker Gilbert Montgomery Professor of the Practice of Religion and Public Life at Harvard Kennedy School. A diocesan priest, Hehir is secretary for health care and social services in the Archdiocese of Boston.GAZETTE: Were you surprised by the choice of Cardinal Bergoglio?HEHIR: Some reports from the conclave that elected Benedict XVI [in 2005] — reports that you can’t verify — said at the time that Bergoglio was No. 2 in the voting, and certainly he was talked about as a possible candidate for the papacy at that time. He hadn’t been talked about a great deal in things that I’ve read leading up to this conclave. In that sense, it was a bit surprising.It’s surprising and, I think, a wonderful thing that a Jesuit, a member of the Society of Jesus, was named to the papacy. The Society of Jesus has always had a special tie to the papacy. Members of their order take a vow as part of their training to be at the disposal of the papacy. This is a very interesting appointment, the first Jesuit. Even though I can’t say I know a great deal about him, what I have heard consistently is that he has been a voice for and a support of the poor in his country, which has gone through very difficult economic times.GAZETTE: Francis will also be the first pope of the modern era who is not from Europe. Do you think that choice was deliberate?HEHIR: Geography was not the determining factor, for sure, but I think geography was on the minds of many people leading up to this election, including the electors. Simply the fact of Latin America having roughly 265 million Catholics — that’s an important thing to take into consideration. It can’t be the only factor, but having made the choice of a Latin American, I think that will speak loudly not only to Catholics and others in Latin America, but to the Southern Hemisphere generally as a recognition of their great significance in the life of Catholicism today.GAZETTE: The Southern Hemisphere, as you alluded to, is where the majority of the world’s poor currently live. Do you think this signals a new direction for the church in reconnecting with its social justice roots?HEHIR: I think there will be a strong stress on social justice because of his own history, on the one hand, and secondly because social justice has been a major, major theme of the church in Latin America since the Second Vatican Council [in the early 1960s]. Thirdly, the Jesuits in Latin America have been a leading voice about the pursuit of justice and concern for the poor. The Jesuits in Central America, for example, have been leaders in a very conflicted period of time, and that has led to martyrdom for some of them.GAZETTE: We’re once again seeing a pope enter the papacy at an advanced age — a factor that led to Benedict stepping down last month, and that could produce another relatively brief tenure for the new pope. Do you think continuity of leadership is something the church needs to consider at this point?HEHIR: There will be substantial continuity because the basic elements of the church will not change. The basic teachings will not change. The basic law of the church will not change. You can presume continuity in a Catholic context. Even if you look at a man like John XXIII, who brought about such huge changes in the church [during the Second Vatican Council], those changes … took place within a wider framework of stability in the church.But the question of what kind of change he will bring will depend upon his own intellectual convictions, his personal style, and his own assessment of what dimensions of the tradition can and should change, while at the same time making those changes within the wider context of the Christian Catholic faith.Francis Schüssler Fiorenza is the Charles Chauncey Stillman Professor of Roman Catholic Theological Studies at Harvard Divinity School.GAZETTE: What is the significance of choosing Francis to honor St. Francis of Assisi?FIORENZA: Francis [founder of the Franciscans, in 1209] gave up wealth that he had and he sort of incarnated — I don’t want to say anti-institutional — but an un-institutional incorporation of Christianity, being concerned with the poor, being concerned with others … and so the [name] Francis was always known for that. You know how some people admire Sean O’Malley because he’s a Franciscan and walks around in sandals, and then gave up the mansion and lives in an apartment? Well, the new pope did actually the same. He gave up the mansion in Argentina … he would take the buses to travel places, so I think it’s that kind of personal spirituality of a Franciscan that he is symbolizing by the name, even though he himself is a Jesuit. That’s what I think is important.GAZETTE: What is the significance of the new pope being the first from South America?FIORENZA: It’s really showing how the axis of Christianity is shifting from Europe to the Third World, and that the numbers of Christians are the most numerous in Spanish-speaking, Portuguese-speaking countries, so it’s a time of symbolizing the importance of that for the church. And you might say it might be an attempt to appeal to native Latin Americans. If one of yours is now the pope … [now they can] identify their ethnic and geographical background with the center of the church in Rome.GAZETTE: Does his record while he served in Argentina indicate whether or not he will support a more conservative agenda as pope?FIORENZA: He took, what I would call, some more conservative positions [while in Argentina]. There has been some criticism about whether he was forceful enough against the military dictatorship. Those criticisms have been raised. He is orthodox in regards to the social issues … [With] this conservative streak, as well as this more evangelical, in a positive sense … spirituality, he maybe appeals both to conservatives and he appeals to liberals. That’s why he got the most votes next to Ratzinger [at the last conclave]. So I don’t want to make as much of a statement of where he’ll be — I think we’re not sure — but I think that explains there is something in him that diverse groups of people can identify with.last_img read more

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Elderly man kills wife then himself due to concerns about medical bills

first_imgAuthorities in Washington are reporting that an elderly man shot his wife and then himself committed over concerns that they could not afford their healthcare bills.The incident was reported in Ferndale on Wednesday around 8:30 am.According to the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office, they received a called from the 77-year-old man saying “I am going to shoot myself.” He then told the operator that there will be a note with instructions and that his body and his wife’s body would be “in the front bedroom.”When authorities arrived to the home at 6500 bock of Timmeran Lane they immediately set up a perimeter and had a crisis negotiator attempt to get in touch with someone inside the home. After trying for an hour, the team sent a robotic camera up to the home and found that both the man and his wife were deceased.Investigators found several notes in the home that listed several of the wife’s ailments and the couples concerns about not having enough money to pay for treatment. Another note listed a next-of-kin.Sheriff Bill Elfo of the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office spoke about the incident saying:“It is very tragic that one of our senior citizens would find himself in such desperate circumstances where he felt murder and suicide were the only option.”Two dogs were also found in the home.  They have since been turned over to the Humane Society.last_img read more

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Tapes of killing shown in case of slain student

first_imgNew evidence was presented Tuesday in the trial of Alejandra Guerrero, who is charged with the homicide of USC graduate student Xinran Ji. The prosecution showed videos of Ji leaving his apartment the night he was murdered, of Guerrero and the other suspects attacking Ji with a baseball bat and of a beaten and bleeding Ji returning home.The court began the day’s proceedings by analyzing Facebook messages from Guerrero’s account, which included mentions of drugs including marijuana and crystal meth. The messages also referenced “flocking” during the night Ji was killed. “Flocking” is a term used to describe robbing, and established a motive for Ji’s murder. Next, Detective Matt Courtney was called to the witness stand. He brought up text messages planning to “jack” or rob someone that night. Prosecutor John McKinney then showed a video of the beating, where it showed Ji confronted by what appeared to be Andrew Garcia, then Guerrero, then Alberto Ochoa. Garcia and Ochoa will be tried separately at a later date. In the video, Ochoa used a bat against Ji, then handed it to Garcia. When Ji began to run, Garcia chased him with the bat, and Guerrero soon followed with a wrench. Both tools delivered the fatal blows. Jonathan del Carmen, another suspect and a fifth person, never stepped out of the car. McKinney then delivered a closing argument to the jury. “A 2D photograph — that’s how we’ve come to know him. But before Guerrero and her friends slaughtered him, he was a person,” the prosecutor said, pointing to a picture of a smiling Ji on the overhead screen.McKinney described Ji as warm and compassionate as well as analytical and creative. “[Ji was] someone who bought into this concept of delayed gratification, someone who put work first, someone who studied hard, and someone who put off the frivolities of life for another time,” McKinney said. “And when I thought about that, I thought it was particularly sad that somebody who frontloaded life with his studies never got the chance to enjoy the fruits of his labor.”However, McKinney admitted that over the span of the past two years, he had come around to a different way of thinking about Ji.“Xinran didn’t delay gratification; his work was his gratification,” McKinney said. “The way he should be remembered is not the way he was found at 7 o’clock in the morning on July 25. The way he should be remembered is the way he lived.”The prosecutor remarked that Ji didn’t drive around in cars at midnight looking for people to rob or assault, so he could smoke weed or drink alcohol, but instead loved his studies, loved engineering, loved being part of study groups and spending time with his classmates.“What Guerrero and her friends took away from him is something so basic as waking up in the morning, smiling, breathing — [they] took away from us whatever promise this young man held,” McKinney said.  The last minutes of Ji’s life, McKinney noted, were spent walking a friend home from a study group, where he had just spent four hours working with a team on a project.“He didn’t stop at 29th and Orchard and say ‘See ya! You got the bike, call me when you get home, this is my stop, I’m just gonna walk from here,’” McKinney said. “He walked her all the way to her front door and then attempted to walk all the way back home; that’s just the kind of person he was.”McKinney said that Ji had no way of knowing that Guerrero and her friends were in the neighborhood, or what would happen that night.“When you think about this case, it’s tempting to think ‘Man, one more minute either way and maybe they don’t see him, maybe he makes it home, maybe if the study group ended five minutes early, maybe there was some sort of delay, maybe he makes it home,’” McKinney said. “It’s tempting to think about things like that, but we shouldn’t have to. One minute or five minutes more or less should not make the difference between life and death at the hands of another person in a civilized society.”last_img read more

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