Friday, November 19, 2010

400-408 – • CNBC (11/18/2010) Nearly 1 in 5 Americans had mental illness in 2009.

My Summary:   45 million or 20% of adult Americans had a mental illness last year, and 14% or 6.1 million of them never got treatment.  33% of those with mental illness were depressed, about 14.8 million Americans.  30% of those 18-25 had the highest rate of mental illness, while those 50+ had the lowest rate at 13%. 

• Fox News (11/18/2010) D.C. Condom Program Sends Wrong Message, Abstinence Group Says. 

My Summary:  The $200,000 DC Department of Health "Rubber Revolution" campaign hopes to distribute "dramatically more" than the 3.5 million free condoms they distributed last year.  DC has the highest percentage of people living with HIV/AIDS in the nation, 3%, 7-times the national average of 0.45%.  The national birthrate for girls 15-19 was 41.5 per thousand in 2008, but in DC it was 50.9 per thousand.

// But Michael Kharfen, the Health Department's community outreach bureau chief, defended the website and its pop quiz as a way to "engage people in a different way" when it comes to condom usage.

"We've looked at ways people have done strategies to engage people in an affirming way," Kharfen said. "Some of what we've seen in research is that condoms can be stigmatizing. We're trying to change the conversation."  "We're expecting that this campaign is going to make that increase dramatically," Kharfen said.

Asked if the campaign promotes promiscuity, Kharfen said: "Research that has been done about condom-promoting programs have not shown increases in sexual activity, but rather increases condom use. The reality that we're challenged with is that when you're talking about young people and adults, we have some severe epidemics on our hands."

// "We're not recruiting people into sexual activity," Kharfen said. "What we're saying is if you're engaging in sexual activity, a condom is the only device that protects you from these diseases and unwanted pregnancy."

413-423 – • Elizabeth Marquardt, Huffington Post (11/16/2010) The New Stigma - - Children of Divorce Are No Longer Stigmatized, Until They Start Dating.  

A young man says, "When I go out with a woman I can always tell on the first date if she's from a divorced family. The women from divorced families are over-anxious, eager to please. They're exhausting."

A young woman says, "My parents have been married thirty-five years and I want a long marriage like they've had. I love my boyfriend, but he's from a divorced family and, I don't know, it just seems like he had to be a lot more independent growing up than I ever was. Frankly, it worries me."

A woman writing to an advice columnist complains, "I am wary of dating guys whose parents are divorced... I think people whose parents are divorced may have a different sense of marriage - i.e., that it doesn't have to be for a lifetime..."

// Social science evidence now demonstrates that, compared to those who grow up with married parents, children of divorce are at greater risk for a host of social problems. Divorce also appears to be transmitted inter-generationally. Studies now show that when they grow up the children of divorce are themselves at significantly greater risk of divorce compared to those who grew up with married parents.

// Without question, divorce on average makes life much harder for kids and for the adults that they become. But let's not make the children bear the burdens of their parents' decisions. To those who grew up with married parents, hear this: We children of divorce value marriage because we know what life is like when it's gone. We grew up fast and we know how to take care of ourselves. Many of us are, frankly, quite wonderful. Marry us.

428-437 – When dating, can you tell if someone is from a divorced family?  Was it a concern for you?  Those of you from a divorced family, and now in a good marriage, how are you doing it?  What's keeping you together?

443-452 – Calls

458-508 – Melody Rossi is founder and Executive Director of Cloud and Fire Ministries ( in the San Fernando Valley, where she has earned the title "Mother of the Hood."  A former Special Education teacher at Sepulveda Middle School in North Hills, she saw first hand that schools in the Northeast San Fernando Valley were some of the worst in the nation, with students facing tremendous pressure to join gangs, take and sell drugs, and become involved in crime.  She decided to do something about it in 1999, so she started CFM as an after-school club ministering to the low-income Hispanic youth in the neighborhood.  Today, CFM provides multiple programs and a wide array of services to more than 400 youth each year.

Melody is also the author of the award-winning book May I Walk You Home? Sharing Christ's Love with the Dying, which recounts how her mother, father, and stepmother all came to personal faith while struggling with terminal illness.

Tomorrow is their big Thanksgiving Dinner and Fall Festival where local families are invited to a sit-down dinner prepared by CFM and Bel Air Pres. Volunteers, and all kinds of activities for the kids.  They're in need of items for their Food Give-Away too, including groceries, diapers, baby formula, and other necessities to needy families this Thanksgiving.

You can help by making a special Thanksgiving Donation of $24.45 to feed one family by calling 818-920-0101.

512-523 – Melody & Pride Rossi

528-539 – Melody & Pride Rossi

544-554 – Melody & Pride Rossi

558-608 – •

Senior Pastor Salary & Church Size (in thousands)

Church Size    $Low/$High      $Avg. Tenure 1-10yrs / 11-20yrs / 21+yrs

1,000-1,999    $50 / $250     $110 / $107 / $109

2,000-2,999    $55 / $400     $126 / $144 / $123

3,000-3,999    $40 / $260     $124 / $140 / $156

4,000-5,999    $96 / $332     $152 / $146 / $179

6,000-9,999    $120 / $294     $172 / $219 / $179

10,000-14,999    $130 / $270     $145 / ?? / $184


Senior Pastor Salary $ Church Budget (in thousands) [Table 13]

$Church Budget – $Low/Avg/High

$1-1.99M – $50/91/145

$2-2.99M – $40/103/195

$3-3.99M – $90/121/165

$4-4.99M – $55/132/199

$5-5.99M – $101/160/400

$6-7.99M – $94/153/250

$8-9.99M – $100/165/332

$10M > – $96/189/306

• AP (11/17/2010) Thou shalt not Facebook, says Reverend.  Good idea or bad idea?  Do you think it's a bad sign if your boyfriend or girlfriend, let alone your spouse, won't give you their log-in information?  Have any of you been contacted by an old flame?  Were you the curious "what are they up to now, what do they look like now" seeker?

Thou shalt not commit adultery. And thou also shalt not use Facebook.

That's the edict from a New Jersey pastor who feels the two often go together.

The Rev. Cedric Miller said 20 couples among the 1,100 members of his Living Word Christian Fellowship Church have run into marital trouble over the last six months after a spouse connected with an ex-flame over Facebook.

Because of the problems, he is ordering about 50 married church officials to delete their accounts with the social networking site or resign from their leadership positions. He had previously asked married congregants to share their login information with their spouses and now plans to suggest that they give up Facebook altogether.

"I've been in extended counseling with couples with marital problems because of Facebook for the last year and a half," he said. "What happens is someone from yesterday surfaces, it leads to conversations and there have been physical meet-ups. The temptation is just too great."

Rev. Miller is married and has a Facebook account that he uses to keep in touch with six children, but he will heed his own advice and cancel his account this weekend.

On Sunday, he plans to "strongly suggest" that all married people to stop using Facebook, lest they endanger their marriage. //

612-623 – Calls

628-639 – Calls

644-656 – Calls

• Elizabeth Armstrong, Christian Science Monitor (2002), The First Thanksgiving. 

She points out there are only two surviving historical sources to the first Thanksgiving:  (1) colonist Edward Winslow's letter to a friend dated December 1621, mentioning some of the food and activities, and (2) a book written by William Bradford in 1641, that was stolen then lost for almost 200 years, until it resurfaced again in 1854.  Here's a passage from Winslow's Letter,

"Our harvest being gotten in, our Governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a more special manner rejoice together, after we had gathered the fruit of our labors; they four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the Company almost a week, at which time, among other Recreations, we exercised our Arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and among the rest their greatest King Massasoit, with some 90 men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted and they went out and killed five Deer, which they brought to the Plantation and bestowed on our Governor, and upon the Captain and others."

What historians do know about Thanksgiving:  (1) The first Thanksgiving was a harvest celebration in 1621 that lasted for three days, (2) likely between Sept. 21 and Nov. 11.  (3) Approximately 90 Wampanoag Indians and 52 colonists participated, the latter mostly women and children.  (4) The Wampanoag, led by Chief Massasoit, contributed at least five deer to the feast.  (5) Cranberry sauce, potatoes - white or sweet - and pies were not on the menu.  (6) The Pilgrims and Wampanoag communicated through Squanto, a member of the Patuxet tribe, who knew English because he had associated with earlier explorers.  (7) Besides meals, the event included recreation and entertainment.  (8) Abraham Lincoln named Thanksgiving an annual holiday in 1863 to be celebrated the last Thursday of November.

A 19th century "Martha Stewart," named Sarah Josepha Hale, is largely responsible for our modern Thanksgiving!   In 1854, as editor of Godey's Lady's Book, Hale filled its pages with recipes and editorials about Thanksgiving, all based upon Winslow's brief passage.  That year, Bradford's history of the Plymouth Plantation had resurfaced.  Hale wrote of – you guessed it – roasted turkey, savory stuffing, and pumpkin pies, none of which appeared at the original celebration – nor did forks.  In 1858, she petitioned president Buchanan to declare Thanksgiving a national holiday, and though he declined, five years later in 1863, Abraham Lincoln consented, and declared the last Thursday of November a national holiday known as Thanksgiving.  Hale wrote, "We have too few holidays. . . . Thanksgiving like the Fourth of July should be considered a national festival and observed by all our people. There is a deep moral influence in these periodical seasons of rejoicing, in which whole communities participate. They bring out . . . the best sympathies in our natures."

• Cathleen Decker, Los Angeles Times (11/19/2010) For the GOP, California is a deep blue hole.  A new Los Angeles Times/USC poll shows a deep reluctance among many voters to side with a GOP candidate and broad swaths of the state holding views on government's role that conflict with Republican tenets.

• Peggy Noonan, WSJ (11/19/2010) To Run or Not to Run, That Is the Question.  It's only Thanksgiving 2010, but some GOP politicians must decide if they want a shot at the presidency.

• Reuters (11/18/2010) Factbox: Taxpayers in deep water on GM investment.

General Motors Co may have the world's biggest initial public offering, but U.S. taxpayers were more than $9 billion underwater on the government-funded restructuring at its current share price on Thursday.

A breakdown of the paper loss follows.

* The U.S. Treasury loaned GM about $49.86 billion from late 2008 through 2009 to restructure the company and finance its move through bankruptcy and beyond.

* Before accounting for the Treasury proceeds from the IPO, GM had repaid about $9.74 billion to the government. Those repayments included unused loans, the purchase of Treasury preferred shares, and dividends and interest. That left taxpayers owed a little more than $40.1 billion.

* Including over-allotments, Treasury will recover more than $13.6 billion by selling 412.3 million common shares, leaving taxpayers owed about $26.5 billion. Treasury would need to sell its remaining 500.1 million share-stake at an average price of about $53 for taxpayers to be repaid.

* With GM shares trading at $34.50 Thursday afternoon on the New York Stock Exchange, taxpayers were facing an $18.50 per-share deficit on their remaining stake, or about $9.25 billion.

SOURCES: Treasury public reports, GM SEC filings