Saturday, October 10, 2009

Pray with Gina today

Republican candidate for Register of Wills Gina Nevenglosky will be praying at the Luzerne County Courthouse today at 1PM.
The program was sent along by Kathy Dobash.
Opening Prayer by Pastor Tom Miller of Cornerstone Christian Fellowship
Selected Christian Songs by the Perspective Church Praise Band
Prayers for our County and the Elected Officials of Luzerne County By Pastor Sarah Washington
Why support Gina in this election? By Pastor Sam Washington
Commissioner Steve Urban - remarks and special introduction of our Republican candidate for Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans Court Gina Nevenglosky
Selected Christian Songs by the Perspective Church Praise Band
Open to the public for prayer
Closing prayer by Pastor John Murray
WTF? I think the 1st amendment regarding the separation of church and state even applies to Luzerne County. I have never met Gina despite going to countless Republican events over the last few months but she was always a no show. We will miss each other again because I will be watching the Penn State game on ESPN 360 at that time because Comcast removed ESPN Classic from my cable lineup last year.
Update: A couple of wags on my Facebook page have suggested that the courthouse needs an exorcism instead of a prayer service. Another Monkey is worried that Facebook and Twiiter will kill blogging. I think that Facebook expands my audience but I haven't tried Twitter yet.


Big Dan said...

Didn't you hear? Bishop Martino shut down so many churches and schools, his last act was to consolidate them all in the Luzerne County Courthouse. There's plenty of room there now.

Anonymous said...

check yonk's blog out on friday for a a cool explanation of twitter.

Anonymous said...

Re posted from face book, (Twitter is for twats)

A) we all know the Courthouse needs prayers, or perhaps and exorcism.

B) I kind of agree with Steve, not that there is a significant Muslim or Jewish vote, but this is not a Christian area, but a Catholic area. ... Read More

C) I hope Home Rule is enacted and the positions of Register of Wills, Recorder of Deeds, Clerk of Courts, Prothonotory (Clerk of Civil Court), Coronor, and Treasurer are eliminated or filled with professionals. All that is needed is the three commissioners,a Watch Dog, and and the DA. I think the County Council broken up by district is a horrible idea, unless they also have at large members with a minority party seat

D.B. Echo said...

Dumb question: Is Michael Steele very tall, or is she very short?

Renee Butts said...

Repost from FaceBook: Go, Gina! A great girl with a lot to offer Luzerne County! I won't be able to be there today, but I will be praying from home at 1 PM! Good luck and don't let anyone get ya down, Gina!

Luzerne County needs a lot of prayers!

James said...

Somebody doesn't have a clue what the 1st amendment to the Constitution means - and it is not Gina.

Gort, the 1st amendment DOES NOT talk about the separation of church and state. It grants freedom of religion (i.e. a candidate can hold a time of prayer) and the freedom to assemble. The very amendment that protects her right to do what she is doing, is what you say prohibits her form doing that? How did that happen?

Here is what the amendment says. What part of this prohibits her from doing what she is doing?

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances

Confused Republican said...

Is this the same person who on the Steve Corbett show said that Mike Savokinas is a row officer she looked up too??? This lady is delusional!! Her only chance of winning is PRAYER!!!!

Anonymous said...

Gina's signs are GOD awful...another joke for the Republican party. No wonder they dont win. I guess the Republicans will never take over as long as Steve Urban chooses the candidates.

Anonymous said...

Her son was hired by Savokinas...good Republican???? All real Republicans should vote for Dottie, at least you know what you are getting!

Stephen Albert said...

Re-post from Facebook...

I guess this means that she doesn't want Jews, Muslims, Agnostics or Atheists to vote for her. Not sure about the Catholics...given the line-up, there may be more than a few 'Know Nothing' Party throw-backs in the group.

Also, this is precisely what bothers me about the religious wing of the Republican Party...I may agree with them 80% of the time on fiscal policy issues, but the moment I get wind of the "you are going to hell because you ___________" that 80% becomes irrelevant.

Stephen Albert said...

By the way, Twitter is the ultimate expression of an attention span-less society. I suggest leaving it to the lives of P-Diddy, Kayne West and Paris Hilton.

Anonymous said...

This lady is a disaster. If this is the best the Luzerne County GOP can do, they better get a refund on the salaries they are paying out nowadays.

Renee Butts said...

Repost from Facebook: I had to post this as it was bothering me since yesterday. Gort, I really enjoy your blog and your coverage, but I must respectfully disagree with you here, and I will explain.

There is no such thing as the "separation of church and state" clause in the Constitution. This statement appeared in a letter by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptists. He used this statement to promise them that they would be free to worship as they chose. The text of the letter can be found here:

The First Amendment is actually meant to say that the government cannot force people to belong to a particular religion. They cannot make an "official religion." In no way has Luzerne County done this by allowing Gina to host her day of prayer. I assure you that Jews, Muslims, Wiccans, Scientologists, and Atheists in Luzerne County were worshipping (or not worshipping, in the case of Atheists) in whichever way they saw fit. Therefore, Luzerne County has not been in violation of the First Amendment. The text of the First Amendment reads thusly: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." This passage is pulled word-for-word from Read More

Many of us do find that Secularism itself is a religion. It is based on beliefs and assumptions that no one can prove. No one can prove God does not exist. Ergo, the assumptions of secularism are upheld and supported by faith. Yet, the government has been impressing secularism on so many people. Children have been disallowed from bringing Bibles to school, etc. They're not forcing other children to worship; they only wish to practice their religion. Yet, they have to be secular at school. Is it right to do this? I think not. Many children believe in prayer before lunch, yet many are not permitted to do this in school. In this case, the government is definitely restricing the First Amendment. And I know that I am often offended and irritated by having Secularism pressed upon me.

I know some of you may disagree. But I felt the need to respectfully post my opinion. After all, the First Amendment also guarantees me that right.

P.S. I have to add that Gina's signs are ADORABLE! As a young woman who used to model, and one who keeps up with the latest designer fashions, and as one who has always been artistic, I can honestly say Gina's signs are pretty much perfect. They're bright, feminine, readable, eye-catching, and memorable - exactly what they're supposed to be. (I also feel it prudent to mention here that I find it shallow that someone is trying to judge Gina by the appearance of her sign. That makes as much sense as me voting for someone because they have a nice haircut or because they were a somewhat well-known athlete...Oh, right, people actually do that around here and somehow find some way to rationalize it.)

P.P.S. I'm surprised at how much anger is coming through on this page about Gina. I do know Gina cares about people and the work she does; you can't ask for more than that.

P.P.P.S. All the Anonymous comments on here are a bit of a pet peeve of mine. Are you too ashamed to place your name next to your thoughts? Really! Insulting someone from behind the cover of anonymity is cowardly, to say the least. To put "Anonymous" next to a comment makes your statements (usually classless, sophomoric insults) irrelevant.

Renee Butts said...

To clarify: in my last statement, I meant Anonymous' insults are usually "classless, sophomoric insults." This is why, I suppose, certain folk use "Anonymous."

Stephen Albert said...


No one with any credibility is arguing against Ms Nevenglosky's right to worship as she pleases, where she pleases. However, from my perspective part of the harsh reaction to Ms Nevenglosky's Prayer Rally lies in the fact that it reads as "members only" activity. Unfortunately for Ms Nevenglosky, the job she seeks is to represent ALL the people, not just those she chooses to have fellowship with.

Taking this a step further, you mention that, for example, Wiccan's were worshipping; how could a Wiccan ever hope to feel comfortable at an activity where the sponsor...assuming that she adheres to her Christian beliefs...would look them in the eye and call their activities "evil" and tell them that they were destined for "eternal damnation"? With all due respect, the notion that Wiccans were actually welcomed is nonsensical. I could also make the same comment about any Catholics at this rally...I strongly suspect that at least some of the conservative Christians in attendance (if they are in fact very religiously conservative) believe that the Catholic Church is the "whore of Babylon" (reference - Not exactly a welcoming, inclusive sentiment.

Lastly, you are of course correct in your literal representation of the First Amendment. However consider the following: there are many, many individuals who love to crow about how the United States is a "Christian" nation. I submit that there is only a RAZOR THIN barrier between saying "Christian Nation" and, say, "Baptist Nation" or "Methodist Nation" or "Catholic Nation". In my personal opinion, the more people push the "Christian nation" line, the thinner that barrier between government and government sanctioned religion becomes. To add something of a coda to this argument, the word "Christian" does not appear anywhere in the United States Constitution, so clearly the founding fathers (to use the prose of strict constructionists like Justices Thomas and Scalia) never intended the nation to be considered "Christian" in the first place. In essence you can't have it both can't claim to use the exact words of the Constitution on one hand, but then ignore the lack of certain words on the other.

Lastly, I do agree with your point about anonymous postings, which is precisely why I do sign my real name to these things.

Tony Thomas said...


No one can prove god exists either. That's what faith is for.

Anonymous said...

I hope the Exorcist has a rabbit's foot in his pocket and that the star's are properly aligned that the new BLUE RIBBON PANEL is looking the other way while the local Mafia continues to befuddle the illiterate public that votes on command. Opus Dei! Onward Christian Soldiers! It's true! The Poconos are the "Poland of America!" The only difference is that most of the area's Jew's saw the handwriting on the wall arount 1972, got smart, and emmigtated to Florida and Arizona years ago. At least they won't freeze this winter while the rest of us roast in this hotbed cronyism. Pennsylvania is looking more and more like a cross between Berlusconi's Italy and Romania! LOL

Anonymous said...

To Renee' Butts and Steve Albert concerning posting a comment as "Anonymous": I have only this to say--See the Case "Melvin vs Doe"--the plaintiff was the GOP's darling Superior Court Judge Orie-Melvin whom they are backing for Supreme Court Justice. Her sister, Senator Jane Orie (R) sits on the State Senate's JUDICIARY Committee. Check out that case then look for a film entitled THE MAGDALENE SISTERS and you get exactly why some people sign "Anonymous." You'll pardon me, but I was raised Roman Catholic and had Catholic Education, have lived in Southern Italy and in developing countries were graft, organized crime, the police and the judicary are all in bed together. Oy Veh! HOLY OPUS DEI JUSTINIAN SOCIETY! The entire political class--including the electorate in this state is so brain dead, it almost does not merit a lampoon! Not to worry, these good Judeo-Christian politicians will continue try to dumb you down and baboozle you with horseshit and you'll deserve them if you don't dump the entire "class" of entrenched politicans and elect a few atheiests!

Anonymous said...

If signs elect, Wil Toole wins hands down but signs don't get a vote. What they do is create name recognition. Are we shooting ourselves in the foot with the candidates we put up? Absolutely. We don't have a prayer (sorry) in beating Stanky and then we nominate an auto mechanic to be top auditor of the county. When this election is over, I'm giving very serious thought to dropping the R for an I. I just refuse to get caught up in the party BS and I'm voting for the qualifications, not the party ID. Wasn't it party ID that got us where we are and voting for people with no proven ability (Skrep) also getting us were we are. Right, let's vote for a mechanic and a lost soul and lets use silly slogans like watch dog to continue the county's downward slide. God help us. By the way, I do a lot of business with fellow Republicans so I'm not about to follow the Republicans and shoot myself in the foot by signing this post. Hell no!

Big Dan said...

To be honest, I'm not a religious person, and this prayer stuff at the courthouse is a real turn-off to me. Knock yourself out if you want to do it, but that will cause me NOT to vote for that person.

Big Dan said...

The Godless Constitution

The word "God" does not appear within the text of the Constitution of the United States. After spending three-and-a-half months debating and negotiating about what should go into the document that would govern the land, the framers drafted a constitution that is secular. The U.S. Constitution is often confused with the Declaration of Independence, and it's important to understand the difference.

The Declaration of Independence is seen as that document that established the new nation of the United States. It was written by Thomas Jefferson in 1776. It was signed by the Continental Congress and sent to King George III of England. It is a very eloquent document that is celebrated every July 4, but it is not the law of the land. It is a statement of sentiments directed to King George III in reaction to unfair taxation. The U.S. Constitution was ratified on March 4, 1789 -- thirteen years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

The Declaration of Independence refers to "the Creator:"

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

The Declaration of Independence is not a legal document; it is not the U.S. Constitution. Foes of the principle of separation of church and state often refer to the word "Creator" in the Declaration of Independence as proof that the framers of the U.S. Constitution intended for the United States to be ruled by a soveriegn being. Nothing could be further from the truth. The United States Constitution was written and ratified by elected officials representing a coalition of Enlightenment rationalists and evangelical Christians who were deeply concerned about entanglements between religion and government.

In 1773, the Rev. Isaac Backus , the most prominent Baptist minister in New England, observed that when "church and state are separate, the effects are happy, and they do not at all interfere with each other: but where they have been confounded together, no tongue nor pen can fully describe the mischiefs that have ensued."

Big Dan said...

As eminent church-state scholar Leo Pfeffer notes in his book, Church, State and Freedom, "It is true, of course, that the phrase 'separation of church and state' does not appear in the Constitution. But it was inevitable that some convenient term should come into existence to verbalize a principle so clearly and widely held by the American people....[T]he right to a fair trial is generally accepted to be a constitutional principle; yet the term 'fair trial' is not found in the Constitution. To bring the point even closer home, who would deny that 'religious liberty' is a constitutional principle? Yet that phrase too is not in the Constitution. The universal acceptance which all these terms, including 'separation of church and state,' have received in America would seem to confirm rather than disparage their reality as basic American democratic principles."

Thus, it is entirely appropriate to speak of the "constitutional principle of church-state separation" since that phrase summarizes what the First Amendment's religion clauses do-they separate church and state.

Religious Right activists have tried for decades to make light of Jefferson's "wall of separation" response to the Danbury Baptists, attempting to dismiss it as a hastily written note designed to win the favor of a political constituency. But a glance at the history surrounding the letter shows they are simply wrong.

As church-state scholar Pfeffer points out, Jefferson clearly saw the letter as an opportunity to make a major pronouncement on church and state. Before sending the missive, Jefferson had it reviewed by Levi Lincoln, his attorney general. Jefferson told Lincoln he viewed the response as a way of "sowing useful truths and principles among the people, which might germinate and become rooted among their political tenets."

At the time he wrote the letter, Jefferson was under fire from conservative religious elements who hated his strong stand for full religious liberty. Jefferson saw his response to the Danbury Baptists as an opportunity to clear up his views on church and state. Far from being a mere courtesy, the letter represented a summary of Jefferson's thinking on the purpose and effect of the First Amendment's religion clauses.

Jefferson's Danbury letter has been cited favorably by the Supreme Court many times. In its 1879 Reynolds v. U.S. decision the high court said Jefferson's observations "may be accepted almost as an authoritative declaration of the scope and effect of the [First] Amendment." In the court's 1947 Everson v. Board of Education decision, Justice Hugo Black wrote, "In the words of Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect 'a wall of separation between church and state.'" It is only in recent times that separation has come under attack by judges in the federal court system who oppose separation of church and state."

Stephen Albert said...

Maybe someone can translate what 'Anonymous' @ 8:16pm was trying to say, as I really, really don't get it.

Opus Dei? What's next, a secret plot involving Bill the Cat? (Get it? Opus, as in Opus the Penguin? Oh never mind)