Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist
Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Md Troopers Assoc #20 & Westminster Md Fire Dept Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Friday, February 24, 2017

March 2, 2017 Affordable Care Act Town Hall – Carroll County

March 2, 2017 Affordable Care Act Town Hall – Carroll County

We discussed the Affordable Care Act Town Hall last night in the Carroll County NAACP meeting and folks asked for more information…

When: March 2, 2017 6 – 8 p.m.

Where: St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, 17 Bond Street, Westminster, MD 21158

According to information found on Facebook on here:

Are you passionate about protecting the coverage that the ACA provides? Have suggestions on how it can be improved?

Are you one of the 291,000 Marylanders enrolled in the ACA funded Medicaid expansion?

Are you one of the 142,872 Marylanders enrolled in a Qualified Health Plan?

Are your friends, family members, co-workers, or neighbors receiving crucial services from the ACA?

We will have a panel of professionals who will share their experience with the ACA as well as a panel of Carroll County residents who rely on the ACA for treatment and life sustaining medications.

Following the panel discussion, we will have an open forum. This is YOUR chance as a member of our community to let our elected officials know how much the ACA means to you, your family, your neighbors, and friends.

Please join us!

For more information, or if you have any questions, please email


The #FreedomOfThePress is essential for our American democracy

What if I told you that the police can have a sense of humor too?

What if I told you that the police can have a sense of humor too?

February 24, 2017


Sunday, February 19, 2017

Leviticus 19:1–37

Oh my - We talked about Leviticus 19 for an hour in the pastor's study. Tough stuff. Much of it is a literary device that can be quite problematic when taken literally without an historic context.

Leviticus 19:1–37

The Lord Is Holy

19 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to all the congregation of the people of Israel and say to them, You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy. 3 Every one of you shall revere his mother and his father, and vyou shall keep my Sabbaths: I am the Lord your God. 4 Do not turn to idols xor make for yourselves any gods of cast metal: I am the Lord your God.

5 “When you offer a sacrifice of peace offerings to the Lord, you shall offer it so that you may be accepted. 6 It shall be eaten the same day you offer it or on the day after, and anything left over until the third day shall be burned up with fire. 7 If it is eaten at all on the third day, it is tainted; it will not be accepted, 8 and everyone who eats it shall bear his iniquity, because he has profaned what is holy to the Lord, and that person shall be cut off from his people.

Love Your Neighbor as Yourself

9 d“When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, neither shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. 10 And you shall not strip your vineyard bare, neither shall you gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the Lord your God.

11 “You shall not steal; you shall not deal falsely; you shall not lie to one another. 12 You shall not swear by my name falsely, and so profane the name of your God: I am the Lord.

13 i“You shall not oppress your neighbor or rob him. The wages of a hired worker shall not remain with you all night until the morning. 14 You shall not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block before the blind, but you shall fear your God: I am the Lord.

15 m“You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor. 16 You shall not go around as a slanderer among your people, and you shall not stand up against the life of your neighbor: I am the Lord.

17 p“You shall not hate your brother in your heart, but you shall reason frankly with your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him. 18 You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.

You Shall Keep My Statutes

19 u“You shall keep my statutes. You shall not let your cattle breed with a different kind. You shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed, nor shall you wear a garment of cloth made of two kinds of material.

20 “If a man lies sexually with a woman who is a slave, assigned to another man and not yet ransomed or given her freedom, a distinction shall be made. They shall not be put to death, because she was not free; 21 but whe shall bring his compensation to the Lord, to the entrance of the tent of meeting, a ram for a guilt offering. 22 And the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the guilt offering before the Lord for his sin that he has committed, and he shall be forgiven for the sin that he has committed.

23 “When you come into the land and plant any kind of tree for food, then you shall regard its fruit as forbidden.2 Three years it shall be forbidden to you; it must not be eaten. 24 And in the fourth year all its fruit shall be holy, an offering of praise to the Lord. 25 But in the fifth year you may eat of its fruit, to increase its yield for you: I am the Lord your God.

26 “You shall not eat any flesh with the blood in it. You shall not interpret omens or tell fortunes. 27 You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard. 28 You shall not make any cuts on your body for the dead or tattoo yourselves: I am the Lord.

29 c“Do not profane your daughter by making her a prostitute, lest the land fall into prostitution and the land become full of depravity. 30 dYou shall keep my Sabbaths and reverence my sanctuary: I am the Lord.

31 f“Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am the Lord your God.

32 “You shall stand up before the gray head and honor the face of an old man, and you shall fear your God: I am the Lord.

33 “When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. 34 You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

35 “You shall do no wrong in judgment, in measures of length or weight or quantity. 36 You shall have just balances, just weights, a just ephah, and a just hin:3 I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt. 37 And you shall observe all my statutes and all my rules, and do them: I am the Lord.”

Sunday church service at Grace Lutheran Church. 19Feb2017

Sunday church service at Grace Lutheran Church. 19Feb2017 These days, pastors are about as apprehensive as a long-tailed cat in a  room full of rocking chairs. "But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." Matthew 5:44 In a time if high anxiety, we are called upon to be the facilitators of reconciliation. God works through us to bring healing and reconciliation to a broken world. well, anyway, that's what I heard and I am sticking with it. Just saying.

Screening of the film "13th" to be exhibited at the Carroll Arts Center Feb 19, 2017, 4:15 - 7 p.m.

Screening of the film "13th" to be exhibited at the Carroll Arts Center Feb 19, 2017, 4:15 - 7 p.m.

Scheduled: Sunday, February 19, 2017 4:30 pm

Cost: FREE

Location: The Carroll Arts Center, 91 West Main Street, Westminster, MD, 21157 View Google Map

The Cedarhurst Unitarian Universalists will present a screening of the documentary film “13th,” tomorrow - on Sunday February 19th from 4:15 - 7 p.m. at the Carroll County Art Center, according to CC NAACP Branch 7014 member Maria Warburton.

Here is link to the film's trailer:

According to the Carroll Arts Center website, “Ava DuVernay’s award winning documentary “13th” refers to the 13th amendment to the constitution that banned slavery but left a loophole permitting the use of involuntary servitude to be used as a punishment for crime.

“In the aftermath of the Civil War, this clause was exploited allowing the incarceration of African-Americans for minor crimes.

“Using archival footage and testimony from an array of activists, historians, politicians and formerly incarcerated men and women, DuVernay shows the progression of the abuse of this clause in the 13th amendment since the end of the Civil War until today.”

Free admission. Doors open at 4:15 pm and showing time is 4:30 pm. A brief panel discussion will follow the film.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Shippensburg Freshmen gave up an entire weekend... why?

Highlights from ministry at Shippensburg

Shippensburg Freshmen gave up an entire weekend... why?

Why a Weekend of Service?

For those of you who have received our newsletters for more than a year, it may feel like old news that every February we take students on a weekend service trip where we help with kitchen and grounds work at a YoungLife camp.  Every February we take students.  Every February we take the same pictures that look almost identical year to year. Every February we tell you about it.  Why do we do it?  And why is it exciting?

Let me tell you! Each year our vision has been to specifically recruit freshmen for this weekend and to use it and the car ride there as an extended time of spiritual investment and community building.  There are unique open doors into a person's heart that arise when you labor, sweat, and freeze alongside someone all to serve campers that we don't even know!  Students often leave with a deeper sense of community and we staff have more knowledge and opportunity to speak into a students heart.  Exciting!  But that is not what excited us most...

What is most significant is that students choose to come at all!  For many this weekend is symbolic of deep sacrifice and a growing commitment to the gospel.  Not actually because they are serving at YoungLife... but rather because they are giving up a weekend at Shippensburg.  The life of most college students is one consumed by chasing after different things that vie for their attention.  Grades, friends, acceptance, family, prestige. These are all good things, but when elevated above God the Scriptures would call these things idols.  They are things that students find their identity and worth in.  Things that they worship instead of the Lord.  To leave Ship for a weekend means that these students are choosing God over idols that they may struggle with worshipping.  It means that they will not have any time to do homework.  it means they will not have any free time for comfort and fun.  It means no parties and no drinking.  It means no visiting family.  And it means saying no to many opportunities with friends.  It means missing out.  But when they miss out on those things, they get something better.  Jesus.

So please join us in praising God that these students gave up the things they hold dear in order to spend some time growing in the Lord.  Please pray that God continues to soften their hearts and that they continue to pursue Him over all other things.
Watch the above video to see some silly highlights of the service weekend!

Spring Teaching

This semester our regional DiscipleMakers staff team is teaching through the book of Exodus at our campus large groups.  Visit our DiscipleMakers Shippensburg website to listen and learn how God sets us free.

Superbowl Party

Each year the Superbowl provides an excellent opportunity to build relationships with students, especially those who are not Christians and are cautious about attending a Bible study or large group. We were so thankful this year that a couple from our church were willing to host a party for our entire fellowship in their home.  Not only did they give up their evening and other opportunities to open their home for a large number of students, but they sacrificed time and energy and finances to provide delicious food for everyone to eat.  Students were extremely thankful and we got the opportunity to reach out to fringe students and some students from another campus.  Praise God.
~Andy & Melissa

Please Pray:

-For the students who came on the service trip, that they would continue to deepen their commitment to the Lord despite the cost.
-For the students who did NOT come on the service trip. While obviously some students had very good reasons for staying behind... others most likely did not. Please pray for those students that they would choose to put their hope in Christ instead of the things of this world.  Pray also that their "idols" would disappoint them, turning them towards God.
-For our entire DiscipleMakers staff.  That we would serve, work, and rest wisely this semester and that the Lord would use us on campus for His glory.
Highlights from ministry at Shippensburg


Sunday, February 12, 2017

Md National Guard Association 11th Annual Bull and Oyster Roast

Md National Guard Association 11th Annual Bull and Oyster Roast to Benefit the Military Family Relief Fund of Md. Huge hall. As far as you can see, it's folks who like the military, first responders, police, firefighters and EMS providers. Epic. Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017

Sunday church service at Grace Lutheran Church

Sunday church service at Grace Lutheran Church in Westminster. Today's message come from Matthew 5: 21-37. Pastor Clementson advises us, "Think about our words and always use our kind words." 12Feb2017

The next meeting “Carroll CAN” will take place at the Carroll County Public Library in Westminster on Feb. 12, 2017 2 p.m.

The next meeting “Carroll CAN” will take place at the Carroll County Public Library in Westminster on Feb. 12, 2017 2 p.m.

At the January 26th, 2017 meeting of the Carroll County NAACP, Pam Zappardino reported that a grass roots organization has formed in Carroll to advocate for positive changes in the community.

The next meeting “Carroll CAN” - organized by “Together We Will,” will take place at the Carroll County Public Library in Westminster on Feb. 12, 2017 2 p.m. This will be about the 3rd meeting. More information may be found on the organization’s website here:


The next meeting “Carroll CAN” will take place at the Carroll County Public Library in Westminster on Feb. 12, 2017 2 p.m.

According to recent information on the Carroll Can listserve:

“…Come to the Carroll CAN meeting at Westminster library at 2pm today! -AND/OR- If you are able to do so, please sign up to help with a committee that you may have an interest in or maybe even start your own if there is a need. We'd love to have some more people offer their knowledge on specific topics as well to add content to our website and keep the group informed.

“Some examples of the volunteer needs are: Writer of Weekly/Monthly newsletter and Representatives’ Calendars Liaison - report to communications/social media chairs when representatives will have town halls”

We began with a meeting in November 2016 at a Denny’s in Westminster. We used the time to feel empowered and encouraged that a group had formed (we were only 300 members on a Facebook group site at the time, but just that was so exciting at the time!). We shared our stories about why we had come, and there was a common theme of “I thought I was the only one.” The overwhelming feeling was one of relief to have found fellow Carroll County residents who shared the same values and concerns.
And then we hit the ground running!
We developed an organizational and leadership structure, which continues to grow as we find our groove.
We organized a bus to attend the Women’s March on Washington.  That wound up becoming 3 buses, with 136 passengers!  For many, it was their first march and their first moment of activism!  We had a volunteer design our green “March On” buttons that we now wear proudly.  After the march, a group of marchers went to a local restaurant for dinner, still in their pink hats, and they received applause and invited others to join our group!  
We programmed our representatives’ numbers into our phones, and faced our nervousness and discomfort by making calls to their offices.  We have now become comfortable with something that most of us had never done before 2017!
We met for monthly meetings, and the rooms were packed with energy and ideas.
We developed a list of local businesses to support due to our common values and interests.
We built a website, and received donations to host the site for the next year!
Some awesome stats: Our website has had 3,952 views in the last 30 days (as of 2/8/17).  
We made a public Carroll CAN Facebook page so people can find us and see our calls to action.
Some more awesome stats: In just the first eight days of February, we have had 696 visits! Our Carroll CAN public Facebook page grew at 14.5% last week, which is better than the Together We Will USA page and Pantsuit District page.  We engage more users than Indivisible, TWW-MD, and Pantsuit District!
We have a Call to Action team that verifies and disseminates an action item that we can do every day!  They post these calls to action on the websitefacebook page and twitter.
We increased communication by having an email liaison send the content of the facebook page to those who are not on facebook.
We developed a logo that signifies our awareness that we are stronger as a united team.   We once felt alone because of our values, and now we have both comfort and unified action because of our togetherness.
We had members who went to BWI to show support to refugees and immigrants on the day the bad went into effect.  We have members who gather on Main Street in Westminster on Saturdays with signs that have messages of inclusion, kindness, and support.
We have organized a Town Hall Meeting on 3/2/17 focused on the Affordable Care Act!  We have invited our representatives to attend, and we are hopeful they will.  
We organized small groups that meet at local restaurants for support and brainstorming.
We have amazing passion and motivation! People who have never been engaged in anything like this before have stepped up to lead a subcommittee!  People who made a suggestion wound up being willing to make that suggestion happen!  All it takes is that first thought of “Can I do ___?” and you will get a resounding and supportive, “Yes you CAN!”
We have managed to add activism and volunteering to our already full plates.  We have given our talents without expectation of recognition nor reimbursement.  We have learned new skills and been willing to go outside our comfort zones.

We are Carroll CAN—an action-focused, action-packed community network of kind, compassionate, and dedicated Carroll County residents. Together, we have, we will, and we CAN.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

“The letter written by Coretta Scott King about Jeff Sessions that Elizabeth Warren wasn't allowed to read on the Senate Floor.”

“The letter written by Coretta Scott King about Jeff Sessions that Elizabeth Warren wasn't allowed to read on the Senate Floor.”

Senate confirms Sessions as attorney general BY JORDAIN CARNEY - 02/08/17 07:20 PM EST

The Senate voted Wednesday night to confirm Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) as attorney general, capping a vicious debate that left Democrats and Republicans alike seething at times.

No Republicans went against Sessions in the 52-47 vote. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) was the only Democrat to back Sessions.


Republicans decried the Democratic tactics, arguing they were going to new lows to smear Sessions.


The fiery words in the last days of the debate over Sessions were somewhat surprising.

While the issue of race had always hung over the debate, Sessions is well-liked personally by many senators. That made the stinging words all the more noteworthy — and raises questions about the ability of lawmakers to work together going forward.

March 19, 1986

According to the Washington Post, “Coretta Scott King, the widow of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., urged Congress in a letter to block the 1986 nomination of Jeff Sessions for federal judge, saying that allowing him to join the federal bench would ‘irreparably damage the work of my husband.’”

“In the letter, King writes that Sessions’s ascension to the federal bench ‘simply cannot be allowed to happen,’ arguing that as a U.S. attorney, the Alabama lawmaker pursued ‘politically-motivated voting fraud prosecutions’ and that he ‘lacks the temperament, fairness and judgment to be a federal judge.’ She said Sessions’s conduct in prosecuting civil rights leaders in a voting-fraud case ‘raises serious questions about his commitment to the protection of the voting rights of all American citizens.’”

“The letter written by Coretta Scott King about Jeff Sessions that Elizabeth Warren wasn't allowed to read on the Senate Floor.” 338729117-Scott-King-1986-Letter-and-Testimony-Signed
Republicans vote to rebuke Elizabeth Warren, saying she impugned Sessions’s character By Paul Kane and Ed O'Keefe February 7 at 11:39 PM

“Senate Republicans passed a party-line rebuke Tuesday night of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) for a speech opposing attorney general nominee Jeff Sessions, striking down her words for impugning the Alabama senator’s character.

“In an extraordinarily rare move, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) interrupted Warren’s speech, in a near-empty chamber as debate on Sessions’s nomination heads toward a Wednesday evening vote, and said that she had breached Senate rules by reading past statements against Sessions from figures such as the late senator Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) and the late Coretta Scott King.”


The Senate voted, 49 to 43, strictly on party lines, to uphold the ruling that Warren violated Rule 19 of the Senate that says senators are not allowed to “directly or indirectly, by any form of words impute to another Senator or to other Senators any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming a Senator.” Pursuant to that rule, Warren was ordered to sit down and forbidden from speaking during the remainder of the debate on the nomination of Sessions.

Read the letter Coretta Scott King wrote opposing Sessions’s 1986 federal nomination By Wesley Lowery January 10, 2017

Mom and I say hi

Mom and I say hi. I offered to take her to lunch for her birthday, but she said no, she wanted to have lunch at home. So we are sitting here in her kitchen eating lunch. 8Feb2017

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Letter: Police salaries in Carroll among lowest in state

Letter: Police salaries in Carroll among lowest in state

February 4, 2017 by Brandon Holland, Westminster, The writer is the president of Carroll County FOP Lodge 20.

Recently, the Carroll County Times reported on our sheriff and state's attorney seeking pay increases for the next election cycle. A related editorial asked whether the salaries for Carroll County employees' are too low. I am the president of Carroll County's Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 20, and I am writing to confirm that Carroll County has some of the lowest-paid police in the state.

Law Order, Law Order Police, Westminster Police CC FOP Lodge #20, Public Safety Police CC FOP #20, Police, Westminster Police Dept, Carroll Co Issues, 

Monday, February 06, 2017

Feb. 7, 1936 MSP LODD: Maryland State Police Quartermaster Sergeant Wilbert V. Hunter died of exposure on 2/7/1936

Feb. 7, 1936 MSP LODD: Maryland State Police Quartermaster Sergeant Wilbert V. Hunter died of exposure on 2/7/1936

And Harford County Sheriff’s Deputies Patrick Dailey and Mark Logsdon were shot and killed on Feb. 10, 2016

Fortunately, throughout history, we have only lost one Maryland State Trooper in the month of February. On February 7th, we remember Maryland State Police Quartermaster Sergeant Wilbert V. Hunter who died of exposure on February 7, 1936.

Heavenly Father. We ask for your healing graces for the friends, family, and colleagues of Harford County Sheriff’s Deputies Patrick Dailey and Mark Logsdon who were shot and killed last year on Feb. 10, 2016 – and Maryland State Police Quartermaster Sergeant Wilbert V. Hunter, who died of exposure on 2/7/1936. Amen.

I think of Sgt. Hunter when I complain about the cold and snow of February and how much I do not like the winter. It puts things in perspective.

According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, “Quartermaster Sergeant Hunter died of exposure after falling through ice covering Tangier Sound. He was part of an expedition taking 2,000 pounds of food to stranded residents on Tangier Island during a blizzard. Sergeant Hunter (was 30-yrs old and) had served with the Maryland State Police for just under 8 years.”

Time never diminishes respect and Harford County Sheriff’s Deputies Dailey and Logsdon, and Maryland State Police Sgt. Hunter will always be honored and revered. May they Rest In Peace.

The Officer Down Memorial Page reports that throughout history, in the United States, on Feb. 7, 79 law enforcement officers died in the line of duty.

We lift them up into your loving arms. Hold them their family, friends, and colleagues in your heart and our prayers.

In your boundless compassion, console us who still mourn. 

Remember our fallen servants. … Remember those who serve for our public safety and community.

We Pray and ask the Lord for the protection of our military personnel, law enforcement, firefighters and EMS personnel and their families. Keep us safe as we protect and serve. Amen ####

February 6, 2017 MSP LODD MTA pray


Saturday, February 04, 2017

Writer and author Joseph F. Steffen Jr., 57, died Fri. Jan. 27, 2017

Writer and author Joseph F. Steffen Jr., 57, died Fri. Jan. 27, 2017
By Jacques Kelly and Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun, Feb. 1, 2017

Joseph F. Steffen Jr., a Republican political operative who enjoyed describing himself as the "Prince of Darkness," died of coronary disease Friday at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. The Dundalk resident was 57.

His daughter Jennifer Steffen, with whom he lived, said her father suffered two strokes several years ago.

Born in Baltimore and raised in Reisterstown, he was the son of Joseph F. Steffen Sr., a machinist, and Anne Steffen. He attended Sacred Heart School and was a 1977 Franklin High School graduate. He then did odd jobs before he began working as a speechwriter in Republican politics.

"He was noticed for an article he wrote in a Reisterstown newspaper, and went on to work for [conservative figures] Linda Chavez and Richard Viguerie," his daughter said. "On the basis of that initial article, he was noticed by the National Conservative Action Committee, and at age 23, he became a press secretary for it."

Mr. Steffen was best known for his work in the rough-and-tumble world of Maryland politics, including more than a decade working for former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.

Writer and author Joseph F. Steffen Jr., 57, died Fri. Jan. 27, 2017

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Our prayers are with the family of the corrections officer at the Correctional Center in Smyrna, Delaware

Our prayers are with the family of the corrections officer at the Correctional Center in Smyrna, Delaware

This is so sad – and senseless. Corrections officers are the unsung heroes of public safety. It is an extremely dangerous job. Too often they are underpaid and underappreciated. Corrections officers selflessly serve for our public safety out of sight and out of mind until something stupid happened. At this difficult time our thoughts and prayers are with the family of the corrections officer at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna, Delaware.

The Washington Post is reporting: Corrections officer dead after day-long hostage standoff at Delaware prison – By Katie Mettler and Mark Berman

“The standoff inside Delaware's largest state prison for men ended early Thursday after state police stormed the building, finding one corrections official dead and rescuing another who was being held hostage. Officials did not immediately elaborate on a cause of death for the corrections officer.

“The standoff began Wednesday morning when inmates at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna, about 40 miles south of Wilmington, took four corrections department workers hostage, prompting a lockdown of prisons across the state.” Read more: