The Vocation of a Coach

Kansas lost to Missouri on Saturday, marring their undefeated season and shot at the national title. But still, that the Kansas Jayhawks came out of nowhere–being completely unranked at the beginning of the season–to having had a legitimate shot at the national championship is a testimony to coach Mark Mangino. The massively obese coach is a football genius, just as the massively obese Nero Wolfe is a detection genius. Mangino has specialized in raising teams from the dead. He helped… Read more

Christ Forsaken

Frank Sonnek, in the discussion still raging on the post “YHWH, El, and the Golden Calf,” cites this sermon by Rev. William Cwirla, one of our synod’s great preachers. It’s about how Christ was forsaken on the Cross. It deserves to be printed as an evangelistic tract. The sermon, given at the Higher Things youth gathering, defies paraphrase or even selective quotation. Read it here. Read more

Football under the Aspect of Eternity

This morning, as I write this, I am watching the recording we made of the Packer game before the power went out. When I called my brother last night, he let slip that the Packers won, and today’s paper told me that this victory over Detroit was another career highlight for Brett Favre, who completed 20 straight passes, setting a team record, and tying his career record with seven 300-yard games in a season. As I watch this game, knowing… Read more

Thankful for Electricity

Yesterday at 3:20 p.m. our electricity went out, as did that of 10,000 of our neighbors. It didn’t come back on until 9:25 p.m. Fortunately, we had our Thanksgiving Feast just after noon. We built a fire in our new fireplace, lit candles, and spent the evening like the pilgrims and our other pre-electricity forebears for thousands of years did. Well, they probably didn’t play Lord of the Rings Monopoly by firelight, but still. It was actually a very pleasant… Read more

Conservativism and Gratitude

My friend and colleague Mark Mitchell has written a piece for, I believe it is, “Modern Age” as part of a series on “Why I Am a Conservative.” Dr. Mitchell articulates a not-just-political philosophy based on gratitude. He is a conservative because he is grateful. Do you see the connection? It’s not published yet, so it isn’t online. I’ll try to put it up when possible. Anyway, I thought Dr. Mitchell’s point is fitting to contemplate on Thanksgiving. Read more

Atheists’ Thanksgiving

Chesterton said one of the saddest things about being an atheist had to be not having anyone to thank when you feel truly grateful. So do atheists celebrate Thanksgiving? Yes, they do. This guide for non-believers encourages atheists to celebrate the day by thanking farmers and modern scientists for the abundance they make possible. What is missing (besides the doctrine of vocation, in which God gives us our daily bread and our Thanksgiving feast through people like these an others)… Read more

Blog Developments

You can now have your complete fill of Cranach posts: I moved the archives from the other site to a separate page on this one. Click on the “Archive of Old Site 2005-2007” on the right panel and you will find TWO YEARS of posts, a total of 805 pages! That’s about 4 books worth. (The regular “archives” section just archives this site, month by month. Also, the “archives” heading at the top doesn’t work. I don’t know why. Also… Read more

Why Worship God?

A good discussion is getting started below, at the YHWH, El, & Golden Calves post. Michael the Boot is asking why God “needs” to be worshiped, going on to debunk original sin and other “old arguments.” Join tODD in helping him out. Read more


Sorry–my grandson Sam got to my computer and typed the above. Since this is his first blog entry, I don’t have the heart to delete it. I wonder what he meant by six brackets, a semi-colon, and a backslash. Last Thanksgiving he had just been born and I flew to Australia to see him. Now he and his parents are here with us. Here is Sam’s picture: Read more

End of the Stem Cell Debate

The “Washington Post” had a startling front-page headline this morning: Advance May End Stem Cell Debate. Two mainline scientific journals have published breakthrough and now accepted findings showing how ordinary skin cells can be turned back into stem cells. No embryos or human eggs are harmed in the making of these stem cells. Says one scientist, “This is a tremendous scientific milestone, the biological equivalent to the Wright brothers’ first airplane.” Credit–and a future Nobel Prize–goes to James Thompson, a… Read more

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