Faith in good works

first_imgAshok (A.J.) Kumar doesn’t care what God you believe in, or whether you believe in a deity at all. A member of the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard since 2009, the graduate student at Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) says he wants to work toward a campus community that includes people from all faiths, as well as those not aligned with a religion.“[Humanism] is about building a community within a framework of ethics that is derived from our common humanity,” he said. “What someone believes or doesn’t believe is of far less interest to me than what someone does with themselves.”What Kumar does with himself is volunteer. That’s why he will join dozens of Harvard community members from many faiths at the Student Organization Center at Hilles on Nov. 20 to package meals for hungry Boston-area children. The interfaith community service event is organized by the Harvard Interfaith Collaborative, in conjunction with the Values in Action (VIA) program launched this fall by the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard.“The definition of VIA is ‘by way of,’ or ‘through,’” said Greg Epstein, Harvard’s humanist chaplain. “We can accomplish multiple goals through collaborative action. Working with people from diverse backgrounds, we increase our own understanding, along with the positive relationships between different communities. It’s also an opportunity for us, as humanists and atheists, to challenge the notion that we’re unconcerned with helping others and with doing good things in the world.”The event will take place from noon to 4 p.m. on the Sunday before Thanksgiving. Chris Stedman, the organizer and interfaith community service fellow, said that participants may drop in any time during the afternoon and help for as long as they wish.“You don’t have to commit to four hours,” he said. “We’ll have lines for people to package meals, and you can step in and out whenever you like. We’ll have volunteers there to show people what to do.”VIA hopes to raise $5,000 to purchase food from Kids Care, a program offered by the nonprofit Outreach Inc., which provides balanced, high-nutrition meals to hungry children. Participants in the Nov. 20 event will assemble and package meals for delivery to the Interfaith Social Services and the Germantown “food shelves” in Quincy, which will in turn distribute them to needy kids.“Kids Care delivers the food at a very decent rate,” Stedman said. “It’s only 25 cents per meal.”The pre-Thanksgiving event will try to build on the success of the Sept. 11 interfaith service opportunity, when more than 200 students packaged 10,000 meals for hungry Boston-area kids to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Chelsea Link ’12, who organized the event with Stedman, said that this month VIA has its sights set higher.“We were thrilled with the response to the 9/11 event,” she said. “Ticknor Lounge was absolutely packed from the very beginning to the very end of the event. We kept rotating people in and out of the assembly lines to give everybody a chance to package the food. We had people writing letters to members of Congress in support of hunger relief programs, and we still couldn’t find a job for everyone who wanted to participate. We don’t think we’ll have that problem again this month, given that we’ve more than doubled our goal to 20,000 meals.”When volunteers take a break from packaging meals, they can participate in a dialogue about the meaning of service in the context of their faith and values. Trained facilitators will encourage reflection and help move the discussion along. Harvard Zoroastrian chaplain Daryush Mehta said the combination of dialogue and service creates opportunities for people of different faiths — or none at all — to understand each other.“Ask Zoroastrians about their faith, and you will hear about the mantra by which we live: good thoughts, good words, good deeds,” he said. “We are involved in the Thanksgiving interfaith service project because the event embodies the Zoroastrian mantra by providing a space that integrates thought, dialogue, and active service to help the hungry. This allows us to connect with others at a deeper level.”Outside of providing a lot of nutritious meals for hungry children, Kumar hopes that such service events have a lasting impact on the Harvard community and become a model for interfaith collaboration.“Community service is important to me because it is action,” he said. “The more we can come together to do good, the better we can understand and respect each other.”last_img read more

Senator Cory Booker Meets the President! Bryan Cranston Takes Him All the Way

first_img Star Files All the Way Show Closed This production ended its run on June 29, 2014 U.S. Senator Cory Booker took a field trip to the Neil Simon Theatre on March 9 to watch someone else try to get some bills passed for a change—All the Way star Bryan Cranston! Written by Robert Schenkkan and directed by Bill Rauch, the new bio play tells the story of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s tumultuous first year in office as he tries to get Civil Rights legislation passed in Congress. After seeing history unfold on stage, Booker headed backstage to talk politics with the Breaking Bad star. Check out this Hot Shot of the senator’s meeting with the president, then see All the Way on Broadway! Related Shows Bryan Cranston View Commentslast_img read more

Finding Neverland Will Fly From Boston to Broadway This Spring

first_img Related Shows Directed by Tony winner Diane Paulus, the ART production stars Tony nominee Jeremy Jordan and Olivier winner Laura Michelle Kelly as Sylvia Llewelyn Davis. The two are joined by a cast that includes Carolee Carmello, Michael McGrath and Jeanna de Waal. The tuner features music and lyrics by Gary Barlow and Eliot Kennedy and a book by James Graham.  Finding Neverland Based on the film written by David Magee, Finding Neverland follows the story of Barrie (Jordan) and his relationship with the family of widow Sylvia Llewelyn Davies (Kelly). Llewelyn Davies’ children eventually became Barrie’s inspiration to write Peter Pan. The musical overhauled its creative team in 2013, bringing on board Paulus, Barlow and Graham. Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 21, 2016 Jeremy Jordancenter_img Star Files It looks like the speculation was true! The New York Times reports that new musical Finding Neverland will hit the Great White Way in March 2015 at a Nederlander theater to be announced. The news comes on the same day that the show celebrates its official opening night at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts. View Comments Laura Michelle Kellylast_img read more

Malaysia’s Tenaga looks to increase renewable generation

first_imgMalaysia’s Tenaga looks to increase renewable generation FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:Tenaga Nasional Bhd., the most valuable listed utility company in emerging Asia, is looking to sell its gas-fired power plant in Pakistan as it pushes forward with a plan to rely more on renewable sources of energy.Malaysia’s state-owned electricity producer wants to reduce reliance on fossil fuel, which accounts for about 70 percent of its power generation, Chief Executive Officer Azman Mohd said in an interview in Kuala Lumpur. The company is also considering increasing its stake in Turkey’s Gama Enerji AS that produces electricity using water, wind and natural gas, he said.“Our strategy is to invest in a combination of developed countries and emerging countries, contracted and market, fossil fuel and renewable — we are increasing our renewable,” Azman said in his first interview with international media since taking the helm in 2012.Tenaga has a market value of nearly 90 billion ringgit ($21.7 billion), beating publicly traded peers including India’s NTPC Ltd. and China’s Huaneng Power International Inc. The Malaysian company’s push toward sustainable sources of electricity aligns with the agenda set out by Energy Minister Yeo Bee Yin, who said this week that she’s confident of meeting a 20 percent renewable energy target by 2030, from 2 percent currently.Tenaga wants to produce 1,700 megawatts from green energy by 2025, from 280 megawatts, according to a December investor presentation. That compares with the company’s total installed capacity of 24,139 megawatts, enough to power at least 1.6 million mid-sized homes.More: Emerging Asia’s top power firm considers M&A deals to go greenlast_img read more

Foreign Comedy-Slash-Magic Is Almost As Cool As ‘MURICAN Comedy-Slash-Magic

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Almost.Remember when I wrote about magic? I did it a couple times, because it’s easy and sometimes I’m lazy.Well, it’s been a while, and I’m lazy, so guess what?Yes. Magic. But it was a rhetorical question.Here’s a guy, Karl Einer Hackner Housen Shousen Weiner Whacker… Something or other.He’s from Sweden where the women are amazing and the guys are apparently weird which either means we should go and we’d easily hook up with some Swedish women because we’re not weird, or we wouldn’t because we’re not weird enough.Something to consider.Anyway, Karl is actually is more of a comedian. But there’s magic involved. Sort of.Oh, just watch it. We’ve long ago established no one reads these write-ups anyway…last_img read more

Have yourself a merry little core system review

first_img‘Tis the season to be thinking about what your credit union core processor should be doing for you, your employees, and your members. With the evolution (revolution?) of the way members bank today, and want to bank tomorrow, your core is more important than ever to remain competitive. As 2015 comes to a close, we take a look at 3 key benefits your core system should be providing your CU, and help you determine if it’s time for your own core processing system review. Innovation through Integration: The ability to offer new products only works if it is seamless to your members. True core integration allows for this seamless approach. Your core’s ability to provide true integration ensures it is designed for optimal efficiency across the entire system. Interfaced systems are NOT integrated systems.  Third-party solutions are important, but don’t just look for a core that can accommodate third party solutions… find one that is evolving to make those solutions unnecessary, with features like mobile banking, internet banking, paperless, check-21 capture, and online credit cards built right into the core.Support you can Trust: Not only trust that your core is working for your credit union, but trust that it is evolving to meet the changing needs of your members.Trust that resources are being devoted appropriately to ensure you can continue to please the members you have, as well as attract new members. So while new products are essential to your continued growth, having reliable and exceptional customer support ensures you don’t lose face with your existing members should something go wrong, or you need help. continue reading » 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

NCUA finalizes FOM rule reinstating vacated portions of rule

first_img NCUA finalized its latest field-of-membership rule Thursday at its board meeting, re-instating portions of the rule vacated in March 2018 by a U.S. District Court Decision. Those portions of the rule were upheld by a August 2019 D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals decision, and the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to hear an appeal to the case in June.“NCUA finalizing this rule completes an important modernization of FOM requirements that will allow credit unions to serve more Americans. This is particularly important when people around the country are feeling the impact of the pandemic,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle. “Consumers around the country will benefit from NCUA’s determination to modernize its field of membership rules, and CUNA and Leagues were proud to stand by the agency as bankers tried hard to deprive consumers of safe an affordable options for financial services.”The final rule:Re-adopts a provision to allow an applicant to designate a Combined Statistical Area (CSA), or an individual, contiguous portion thereof, as a well-defined local community (WDLC), provided that the chosen area has a population of 2.5 million or less; and NCUA headquarters continue reading »center_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Stannifer joins rival in Glasgow turnaround

first_imgWould you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img

Pompeo says China may have known of virus in November

first_imgUS Secretary of State Mike Pompeo charged Thursday that China may have known of the new coronavirus as early as November, renewing accusations that Beijing has not been transparent and again drawing ire from China.”You’ll recall that the first cases of this were known by the Chinese government maybe as early as November, but certainly by mid-December,” Pompeo said in an interview.”They were slow to identify this for anyone in the world, including the World Health Organization,” he told conservative radio host Larry O’Connor. Pompeo said the United States still wanted more information from China including the original sample of the SARS-CoV-2 virus detected in the metropolis of Wuhan.”This issue of transparency is important not only as a historical matter to understand what happened back in November and December and January, but it’s important even today,” Pompeo said.”This is still impacting lots of lives here in the United States and, frankly, around the world.”China hit back on Friday, saying Pompeo’s remarks were “totally groundless and entirely for the purpose of blaming others”. Pompeo’s comments ran “counter to the general consensus of the global community”, foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said at a daily press briefing, adding that China had “provided timely information to the world” and actively cooperated with others.China initially closely guarded information of the virus and silenced whistleblowers. The first official acknowledgment of what became a global pandemic came on December 31 when authorities in Wuhan reported mysterious cases of pneumonia.Michael Ryan, emergencies director at the World Health Organization, said the UN body first spoke of an event in Wuhan on January 4 via Twitter and provided “detailed information” the following day to all member countries.President Donald Trump’s administration has harshly criticized both China and the WHO, blaming them for not stopping the illness that has killed more than 180,000 people worldwide.Critics say that Trump is seeking to deflect from his own handling of the coronavirus, which he claimed to have “totally under control” in January but has since killed nearly 50,000 people in the United States — more than any other country.Pompeo has previously not ruled out that the virus originated in a virology laboratory in Wuhan and has demanded international access to it.China has dismissed the theory. Its scientists have said that the virus probably was transmitted to humans at a meat market in Wuhan that butchered exotic animals, though Chinese officials have more recently cast doubt about its origins.center_img Topics :last_img read more

Botswana reports mysterious deaths of hundreds of elephants

first_imgHundreds of elephants have died mysteriously in Botswana’s famed Okavango Delta, the head of the wildlife department said Thursday, ruling out poaching as the tusks were found intact.The landlocked southern African country has the world’s largest elephant population, estimated to be around 130,000.”We have had a report of 356 dead elephants in the area north of the Okavango Delta and we have confirmed 275 so far,” Cyril Taolo, the acting director of the department of Wildlife and National Parks, told AFP in a text message. The latest discoveries were flagged by a wildlife conservation charity, Elephants Without Borders (EWB), whose confidential report referring to the 356 dead elephants, was leaked to the media on Wednesday.EWB suspects the elephants have been dying in the area for about three months.According to the report dated June 19, 2020, “70 percent of elephant carcasses were considered recent, having died about a month ago, and 30 percent of the carcasses appeared fresh, ranging from one day to two weeks old”.”There was good evidence to show elephants of all ages and sex appear to be dying,” said the report penned by EWB director Mike Chase.Several live elephants appeared to have been weak, lethargic and emaciated, with some showing signs of disorientation, difficulty in walking or limping, EWB said.”One elephant was observed walking in circles, unable to change direction although being encouraged by other herd members,” said the report. He said the cause of the deaths was yet to be established with anthrax having been ruled out.”We do not suspect poaching since [the] animals were found with tusks,” he said.Samples have been collected and sent to South Africa, Zimbabwe and Canada for testing.Similar deaths were first reported in May when authorities found 12 carcasses in just a week in two villages in the northwest of the country. center_img Topics :last_img read more