• Praying for serenity

    I’ve been thinking a lot about the Serenity Prayer.

    That’s the one that goes: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

    Although the prayer is often attributed to St. Francis, it was written in 1926 by Reinhold Niebuhr, a Lutheran theologian.

  • First Baptist welcomes new pastor

    Elisha Neubauer


    There have been some new additions at the First Baptist Church of Inverness recently, starting with its new senior pastor, Byron Brown, who presented his first service there on May 22. While he just recently arrived in the community, his path to First Baptist Church started long ago. 

  • The Age of Outrage — let’s end it with love

    On Dec. 8, 2014, no one got eaten alive on the Discovery Channel’s “Eaten Alive” — and some viewers who tuned in to see carnage were outraged.

    On May 6 of the same year, actress Shailene Woodley outraged feminists by announcing that she’s not a feminist, and on Aug. 28, Hello Kitty fans were outraged when the Sanrio company said Hello Kitty “is not a cat.”

  • To get an education

    Nancy Kennedy

    Staff writer

    Jessica Eatough’s eyes light up when she talks about her students.

    For the past two years she’s taught school on the tiny island of Roatan, off the coast of Honduras, a Christian school run by Mark and Susan Schuler, Christian missionaries who first started a Spanish-speaking church on the island eight years ago. Two years after that, they started a kindergarten.

  • GRACE NOTES: Dead man laughing

    Ten years ago I wrote: “My friend Mike ate breakfast last week, which is nothing short of a miracle.

    “He doesn’t shake anymore or wake up in the middle of the night sweating. The little green monkeys that haunt him are gone too.”

  • Islamic State tightens grip on captives held as sex slaves




    Associated Press

    KHANKE, Iraq 

    The advertisement on the Telegram app is as chilling as it is incongruous: A girl for sale is “Virgin. Beautiful. 12 years old.... Her price has reached $12,500 and she will be sold soon.”

  • Learning to enjoy the ride

    Nancy Kennedy



    When I first met my husband he drove a brand-new 1973 Mercury Comet GT, white with orange pinstripes along the sides and orange vinyl interior — and a manual transmission.

    As Barry attempted to teach me how to drive it, I proved myself to be a willing student, but not an adept one.

  • Retired pope thanks reigning pope for his focus on mercy


    Associated Press


    Retired Pope Benedict XVI thanked Pope Francis and endorsed his mercy-filled ministry Tuesday during an unprecedented Vatican ceremony featuring the reigning pope honoring the retired one on the 65th anniversary of his ordination as a priest.

  • When God loses his mind

    Every so often I’ll say to God, “With all due respect and with the full realization that you can fry me on the spot, which I admittedly deserve — you have obviously lost your mind. Sir.”

    Here’s a perfect example: After many, many months of inviting a friend to my church, one day several years ago this friend finally decided to actually come.

  • Mideast hub Dubai eases liquor rules for Ramadan


    Associated Press

    DUBAI, United Arab Emirates  

    The city-state is breaking new ground with its decision to loosen rules prohibiting daytime alcohol sales during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a move that reflects how much Dubai’s rulers value the revenue both tourists and alcohol tax bring into this emirate.