December 30th, 2014

the Son of God was sent into the world in order to die for our salvation

It is 10:09 AM Tuesday morning. It is very cold gray snowy day here in West Michigan. Winter has come back to haunt us. No way of escape from Mr. Winter.

Carol and I went grocery shopping this morning. Carol goes back to work tonight after being off five nights.

We got up this morning around 6 o'clock AM this morning. I made a pot of coffee and messed with our new computer. After messing with our new computer I wrote in my paper diary and ate some food.

Last night Carol went to a going away party for co-worker and I stayed home to read from a book titled, "God Has Spoken: A History of Christian Theology" by Gerald Bray. Carol got home around 9:05 PM from her get together. We watched television and went to bed around 10:30 PM.

music Andy Scott 'We Stay Together'

So Time goes by. I have not read anything this morning. I feel like I am still waking up to this cold winter day.

Well I will close to drift.
  • Current Music
    Old Man Gloom 'Ape of God I'

Alexei Navalny

MOSCOW, Dec 30 (Reuters) - A Russian court gave Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny a suspended sentence on Tuesday for embezzling money but jailed his brother for three and a half years in a case seen as part of a campaign to stifle dissent.

Navalny led mass protests against President Vladimir Putin three years ago, when tens of thousands took to the streets in Moscow and St Petersburg to protest against corruption in his government and inner circle. Opposition figures say jailing Navalny risked a new wave of protests and so it was decided to punish him by jailing his brother instead.

Navalny's supporters will gather in front of the Kremlin later on Tuesday with some 17,000 people having registered on Facebook to attend although the numbers may be smaller as people prepare to celebrate the New Year. The authorities have not given permission for the rally so it is considered illegal and there maybe arrests.

The Navalny brothers, Alexei and Oleg, were accused of stealing 30 million roubles, around $500,000 at the current exchange rate, from two firms including an affiliate of the French cosmetics company Yves Rocher between 2008 and 2012.

Tuesday's ruling will come as a relief for Navalny's supporters after prosecutors asked that he be imprisoned for 10 years. The Kremlin denies allegations that it uses the courts to persecute opponents.

Officials have taken few steps to investigate Navalny's corruption allegations. He claimed there was mass embezzlement, including in state bank VTB and pipeline monopoly Transneft, run by close allies of Putin.

"Aren't you ashamed of what you are doing?" Navalny told the court and judge Yelena Korobchenko. "Why are you putting him (my brother Oleg) in prison? To punish me even harder?"

Currently under house arrest, Alexei Navalny is serving another suspended five-year jail term for a separate conviction last year, which critics also called a sham.

"The authorities are torturing and destroying relatives of their political opponents. This regime doesn't deserve to exist, it must be destroyed," Navalny told reporters outside the court as he was escorted in a car for prisoners.

Russian state television channels were not covering the sentencing or mentioned it very briefly, while most Russian print media or radio stations had it among their top stories.

Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov declined to comment and said the president would find out about the verdict from media.

Putin's popularity has soared over the past year after Moscow's annexation of Ukraine's Russian-speaking Crimea peninsula and its incursion in east Ukraine, which led to the worst stand-off with the West since the end of the Cold War. This has eroded the popularity of opposition leaders such as Navalny.

However, falling oil prices and Western sanctions on Russia over Ukraine have triggered a deep economic crisis, a rouble devaluation and double-digit inflation, threatening Putin's reputation for safeguarding Russian prosperity.

Former Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, one of the most respected Russian economists in the West, said this month Russia was facing a full-fledged crisis which could lead to mass protests next year.

"The authorities could have easily put Navalny in jail. But they understand that it would have led to a large wave of protests. So they will torture him through other means," economist and former central banker turned opposition figure, Sergei Aleksashenko, told independent television channel Dozhd.

Lawyers for Oleg Navalny said they didn't know where exactly he would be sent to serve his prison term. Putin's critic and billionaire Mikhail Khodorkovsky served his 10-year jail term in penal colonies from northern Russia to east Siberia. (Writing by Dmitry Zhdannikov; Editing by Dominic Evans and Anna Willard)
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

the impurities of the leper can no longer be purified

It is 1:40 PM Tuesday afternoon in the flow of existence. Outside this afternoon it is lightly snowing. Carol has gone to bed for the day since she goes back to work tonight.

I have been sitting in the dining room reading from a book titled, "History and Spirit: The Understanding Of Scripture According to Origen" by Henri De Lubac.

Not much else to report this afternoon. It is dead quiet. There is nothing pressing on my mind right now.

Well I will close to drift through the afternoon hours.

"[11] And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee.
[12] And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off:
[13] And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.
[14] And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.
[15] And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God,
[16] And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.
[17] And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?
[18] There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.
[19] And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole." Luke 17:11-19
  • Current Music
    Andy Stott 'Faith In Strangers'