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July 2, 2012


Episcopal Chancellor Urges Purge of Whistleblowers

How many times have you heard the Episcopal church referred to as a place where you don’t have to check your brain at the door?  It was the stereotypical response when someone raised any of the many, many, many heresies the Episcopal church has foisted on its slumbering membership over the years.  It was used to force us into submission when the LG (they weren’t real concerned about the BTQI at that time) first got their nose under the tent.  Allowing dissidents to speak their mind was something we were told must be tolerated - even if it meant allowing them to spew a false gospel.  Heavens to Betsy, John Spong has been allowed to spout more heresies than even Bishop Pike.  And those are just two out of a myriad who were encouraged and celebrated for their willingness to express their far left opinions.  So much so, the Episcopal church leadership is more closely aligned with the last half of Caligula’s reign than Peter’s discipleship. 

Isn’t it odd then that since the entire camel is in the tent, only the politically correct opinions are tolerated?  The Episcopal church has sought to defrock good men simply because they stand for biblical authority.  All this from an organization that was unwilling or unable to strip Pike or Bennison of their pointy hats.  In yet another stunning move, they have brought charges against even more good men.  Their great crime?  They dared to have the courage of their convictions and blow the whistle on the fantasy known as the Episcopal church hierarchy.  In the new and improved Episcopal church, you are not only required to check your brain at the door but it must be thoroughly washed in the process.

As if that were not enough, it seems a church chancellor is supporting a move to put bishop candidates through a public inquisition.  Will they be asked questions that relate to their ability to be a shepherd to their flock?  Will they be questioned on their theology?  Their relationship with Christ?  No, silly rabbit.  This inquisition will be to determine their willingness to bend the knee to the heretics that run the joint. The equivalent of ecclesiastical waterboarding.  Send out an alert, let it be known – any who refuses to toe the party line will be – well everyone knows how the Red Queen would have it end.

Colleagues, regarding resolutions to consent to ordination and consecration of several bishops-elect, e.g., C072 Western Louisiana, C066Virginia, etc.:

We will have the opportunity to vote to consent to the ordination and consecration of several bishops-elect at General Convention.

We from Fort Worth are joined by bishops and deputies from the Dioceses of Quincy and San Joaquin in our hope that none of these bishops-elect harbors the views expressed in the amicus brief recently filed against the Diocese of Fort Worth by seven (7) bishops and three (3) priests of this Church.

We respectfully ask that you support us in our request that, before the Bishops and Deputies are asked to vote on these consent resolutions,

1.    each bishop-elect will have been appropriately and directly examined at a public hearing of the Legislative Committee on Consecration of Bishops or other appropriate public forum in order to confirm his or her (a) understanding of the basics of the polity of this hierarchical Church and (b) specifically whether he or she contends that dioceses have the unilateral and autonomous authority to leave the Church and take church property with them; and
2.    those views be published or otherwise communicated to both houses.
Specifically, as you all probably know, on April 23, 2012 several bishops of this Church-The Rt. Rev. Maurice M. Benitez (retired, Diocese of Texas); The Rt. Rev.  John W. Howe (retired, Diocese of Central Florida); The Rt. Rev. Paul E. Lambert (suffragan, Diocese of Dallas); The Rt. Rev. William H. Love (diocesan, Diocese of Albany); The Rt. Rev. D. Bruce MacPherson (diocesan, Diocese of W. Louisiana); The Rt. Rev. Daniel H. Martins (diocesan, Diocese of Springfield); and The Rt. Rev. James M. Stanton (diocesan, Diocese of Dallas)-filed an amicus brief with the Texas Supreme Court which urged that Court to reverse the summary judgment in favor of The Episcopal Church, Bishop Wallis Ohl, and the loyal Episcopalians in the reorganized, continuing Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, promoting a fundamental misunderstanding of the polity of our Church, including misrepresentations that:

*    The Church is hierarchical only to the diocesan level, not to the General Convention;
*    In the Episcopal Church, the highest authority is the diocesan bishop, not General Convention;
*    A diocese in the Episcopal Church is autonomous;
*    The Diocese of Fort Worth (and therefore presumably any diocese in the Episcopal Church) can unilaterally leave this Church (and presumably usurp the historic church names, records, funds and substantial other real and personal property as the breakaway group forms or affiliates with a new church);
*    Breakaway former bishop Jack Iker, not Provisional Bishop Wallis Ohl who is recognized by this Church, is still the bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth and that it is Iker’s determination of core ecclesiastical issues, e.g. identity of the bishop and other church officials, that binds the secular court under the deference standard in resolving church property disputes; and
*    Iker and the breakaway Defendants should prevail in the litigation against the loyal Episcopalians and thus be able to remove from the mission and ministry of The Episcopal Church and its Diocese and congregations the historic church names, records, funds and substantial other real and personal property throughout the Diocese.

We interrupt your regular programming to issue an Urgent Keyboard Alert.  Remove all liquids and swallow all foods before you continue reading.  (You will thank me later.)

Certainly this request is not a criticism or judgment of any of the bishops-elect we will prayerfully consider in the consent process at General Convention.  They-and future bishops-elect for whom the dioceses may grant or withhold their consent-can and should speak unambiguously for themselves on these issues.

You may now take a break to wipe the tears from your eyes and straighten the furniture that was abused when you fell over laughing.  Ready?

We believe strongly that, as we vote, each Deputy and Bishop should be fully informed of the position of each bishop-elect on these fundamental issues and consider the grave spiritual, missional, and financial costs of the schisms which can emanate from all those qualified accession clauses and this “hierarchy stops at me” mentality.

Seriously, do they even read what they write?  Grave spiritual costs indeed.  If the Episcopal church were worried about the spiritual cost, they would never have embarked on this course of secularizing the church.  One has to wonder if they have set aside a General Convention Hierarchal Sex Abuse and Other Expensive Liability Issues Fund.

Bishop and Deputation, Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth:

    The Rt. Rev. C. Wallis Ohl
    C1     The Rev. David A. Madison         L1     Kathleen Wells
    C2     The Rev. Susan Slaughter           L2     Victoria Prescott
    C3     The Rev. J. Fred Barber             L3     Katie Sherrod
    C4     The Rev. Melanie Barbarito         L4     Robert Hicks
    CA1   The Rev. Amy Haynie               LA1   Lisa Neilson
    CA2   The Rev. Janet Nocher             LA2   Norm Snyder
    CA3   The Rev. James Reynolds         LA3   Brent Walker
    CA4   The Rev. ClayOla Gitane           LA4   Margaret Mieuli

Kathleen Wells
Fort Worth L1

So, what happened to the plea to allow each Diocese to self-determine who they wish to lead them?  You remember – that was the plea when VRG was nominated.  Oh yeah – tent, camel, nose.  This letter certainly proves the rear end has fully entered the room. 


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30 comments

“(b) specifically whether he or she contends that dioceses have the unilateral and autonomous authority to leave the Church and take church property with them”

The Church of England called; it would like all its property back that you guys made off with between 1776-1789:

“The Episcopal church, established shortly after the American Revolution, has its roots in the Anglican Church. The Anglican Church, known as the Church of England, had a strong following in colonial America. But when the colonies won their independence, the majority of America’s Anglican clergy refused to swear allegiance to the British monarch as was required. As a result, the Episcopal Church was formed.”

[1] Posted by Martha on 7-2-2012 at 08:11 AM · [top]

Jacki,
Allowing each diocese to determine their bishop via an election process and then asking for consents at GC is ONLY for progressive dioceses- you know that.  tongue wink   IF a bishop-elect is from a non-progressive diocese, then he MUST be publicly questioned as to his adherence to TEC’s current polity.  Did you miss that change in the canons??? or constitution? tongue rolleye

You know the old adage- what is good for the goose is good for the gander NEVER applies if you don’t want it to especially if it meant that a diocese would actually consecrate a bishop that upholds Christian teaching as it has been known for two thousand years. Surely we could never let that happen!!  wink

Good grief- these people become more and more deluded and angry by the month. It is truly sad that they feel so vehemently that exercising your right to free speech is somehow misconduct by the Canons of TEC.  That indeed shows how far adrift they have gone from Christian teaching and even from a basic understanding of our constitutional rights.

I do believe that Bishop Martins is right in that this is a group of laity most likely led by their Chancellor who feel betrayed by what has happened in Texas.  Thing is that the lawsuit is not over. So why not just hang in there until the final judgment has been handed down. I am guessing that this is timed before GC to (hopefully) maximize its impact on other deputations to GC in Indianapolis.  Will other deputations fall for this silliness and stupidity?
As fas as I know, no such public questioning is part of the consent process for a bishop -elect currently.  Once again change the ways things are done by fiat because we said so!!

Do they really understand the financial costs of what they are proposing? Yes, i understand that they understand the costs of litigation but do they understand that if these bishops-elect are subjected to the process and found wanting in any answer, then there could be MORE dioceses leave the church ? not less.

Really…... some things are just so stupid….....

[2] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 7-2-2012 at 08:45 AM · [top]

This isn’t about anything but intimidation, pure and simple. 

“The more you tighten your noose, the more star systems will slip through your finger”.  Wise words from Princess Leah.  wink

[3] Posted by B. Hunter on 7-2-2012 at 08:53 AM · [top]

Oh come now.  This is no surprise.  We all know that TEC is now a fundamentally lawless organization.  The rules are infinitely malleable and alway operate to the advantage of the liberal in power.  There is absolutely no equal application of law.

This should be no surprise to anyone.

[4] Posted by Br. Michael on 7-2-2012 at 08:54 AM · [top]

SC blu cat lady, taking your scenario first, the diocese w/o an ‘approved’ ordinary could/would be then ‘folded into’ a more progressive diocese, regardless of geographic affinity.

And, Martha, let us take your scenario back a bit further, to the time of the Tudors and Henry VIII, and then we can all blissfully swim the Tiber and ‘return home’, because the English Reformation would never have happened.

Lord have mercy!

[5] Posted by Fr. Chip, SF on 7-2-2012 at 09:02 AM · [top]

The rulers are lording it over them.

“You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you.” Mark 10:42-43 (NIV)

[6] Posted by Undergroundpewster on 7-2-2012 at 09:35 AM · [top]

What the heck, I’ll throw in my opinion of the day.  When one group of people keep asserting rules, then denying them to the point where there is no “rule” but what that those people feel in the moment, you have two distinct possibilities:

1) Manifestly evil, manipulative people

or

2) Alcoholics or other seriously sick people for whom “crazy making” is standard operating procedure.

Option #1 would be more flattering to those of us who think we are “orthodox.”  Evil attacks the church and harms it from time to time - that’s what the Bible says will happen.  Spiritually, we have to watch writing ourselves too large and noble in the narrative - we need to see where we failed to stand up to evil, repent and resist it.

But if #2 is the case, we have to sit and ask ourselves what kind of sick enablers we are.  We need God’s healing and the scary thought becomes, “What kind of dysfunctional organization did I invest my life in, and why?”  That’s humiliating but also a big opportunity to change and grow.  It might take the form of outing and resisting the dysfunctional system, or it might mean walking away and leaving it to wallow and die in its disease.

Either way, the “national hierarchy” of TEC sucks.  There’s a reason the pastoral epistles include drunks among those who should not be made leaders; likewise the sexually immoral; likewise the quarrelsome.  National TEC seems to favor such types.

[7] Posted by Timothy Fountain on 7-2-2012 at 09:58 AM · [top]

Interesting. This seems to contradict the decision of Federal Court in the Dixon vs Christ Church, Akokeek, which ruled that the Bishop is the ultimate interpreter of the Canons in the diocese. If an individual bishop is the ultimate interpreter, and not the soi-disant hierarchy, what kind of strictly hierarchical church is it?

[8] Posted by A Senior Priest on 7-2-2012 at 10:00 AM · [top]

So much so, Tec leadership is more closely aligned with the last half of Caligula’s reign than Peter’s discipleship.

Jokes involving the PB are hereby prohibited.

I mean it.

Almost.

[9] Posted by Jeffersonian on 7-2-2012 at 10:08 AM · [top]

I believe that if Ft. Worth is sucessful leaving TEC with their property that Dallas is right behind them.  I believe TEC knows this and this is a “pre-emptive” strike against Stanton and other like-minded Bishops.

[10] Posted by B. Hunter on 7-2-2012 at 10:30 AM · [top]

#5, Quite possible scenarios! Scary indeed.  When those in charge don’t play by the rules and instead by whatever decision they want today, it makes an organization difficult to govern.

Timothy+, As to your possibilities 1 and 2, I think TEC may have some of both- manifestly evil and manipulative people as well as some people who are truly pyschologically sick and need healing.

As to what kind of dysfunctional organization did you invest your life in and why? I don’t think TEC was quite this dysfunctional a year ago or even a month ago.  National leaders seem to be more dysfunctional and out of touch reality every day.

My answer will be different as a lay person. I did indeed grow up in TEC and my parents saw many signs of the dysfunction in TEC leaders long ago (about the 1970s).  So I have known for awhile about the various ways that TEC is not a normal functioning organization much less a church. PerhapsI should have left long ago but have not because I have been able to find parishes where I can worship and be discipled in Christ. Truthfully all the mess at the national level is just wearing me down. I no longer mention I am Episcopalian when meeting someone. It is shameful what TEC has done to the label “Episcopalian”. Are those people who proudly have affixed bumpers stickers that proclaim they are “Enthusiastically Episcopalian” still as proud now? I wonder.

[11] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 7-2-2012 at 10:34 AM · [top]

B. Hunter, you may be right in thinking that this is a pre-emptive strike against Bishop Stanton and other bishops.  I would call it saber rattling for sure. Only time will tell.

[12] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 7-2-2012 at 10:38 AM · [top]

The Inquisition, what a show, the Inquisition, here we go…

With apologies to Mel Brooks.

Darin+

[13] Posted by frdarin on 7-2-2012 at 10:54 AM · [top]

Perhaps Monty Python as well?

[14] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 7-2-2012 at 11:03 AM · [top]

“(b) specifically whether he or she contends that dioceses have the unilateral and autonomous authority to leave the Church and take church property with them”

The Church of England called; it would like all its property back that you guys made off with between 1776-1789:

Martha, I understand the Vatican has called as well. They’d like the property back that Henry VIII stole from them.

[15] Posted by David Fischler on 7-2-2012 at 12:30 PM · [top]

# SC Blue Cat Lady “Do they really understand the financial costs of what they are proposing?”

I really don’t think they care as they have been winning and figure whatever is out there is theirs - just liquidate it.  They have no investment in it’s creation, only in it’s decimation.

[16] Posted by The Lakeland Two on 7-2-2012 at 05:28 PM · [top]

[7]  Mr. Fountain,  Straight up malicious evil people and sick people are often one and the same.  1) describes badness in terms of intent and will; whereas 2) describes badness in terms of capacity and weakness.  You also seem to be equating evil with individual (choice) and sickness with collective dysfunction.

I say this not to be prissy about terms, but because I used to put people in the more comforting sick category only to have them go malicious on me, and it sucks to learn this lesson the hard way.  The comforting news is that much manipulation is partially unconscious, e.g. the fearful person projects fear.

And whenever I feel humiliated by the Church, I realize I have made stupid assumptions but that loving explicitly bad people is the brilliance of Christ!

[17] Posted by The Plantagenets on 7-2-2012 at 05:52 PM · [top]

It is debatable which end of the camel entered the tent first.

[18] Posted by Siangombe on 7-2-2012 at 06:43 PM · [top]

Yeah, those libchurchers are all about tolerance . . . until they take control.

[19] Posted by Newbie Anglican on 7-2-2012 at 07:24 PM · [top]

Interesting to watch the process.  As checks and balances are broken down, few liberals in TEC consider that these wide powers can just as easily be used against them.

After taking power in Vietnam in the 1940s, Ho Chi Minh’s stalinists began a deadly purge pf all other resistance groups - nationalist , trotskyite, it didn’t matter.  Then when American radical students took to the streets in the 1960s chanting “Ho Chi Minh, Ho Chi Minh, we will fight and we will win!”, they couldn’t understand why other leftist students had a competing chant: “Ho Chi Minh, Ho Chi Minh, How many Trots did you do in?!”

Similar examples abound from the French Revolution in the late 18th century, the Russian Revolution in the early twentieth, and many others.

Its all in Orwell - KJS, Sauls et al will turn on their own kind.

[20] Posted by MichaelA on 7-2-2012 at 07:34 PM · [top]

Recall the adventure of Shostakovich’s interrogation by the KGB in 1937:

“I was given a [security] pass and went to the [NKVD] office. The investigator got up when I came in and greeted me. He was very friendly and asked me to sit down. He started asking questions about my health, my family, the work I was doing - all kinds of questions. He spoke in a very friendly, welcoming and polite way. Then suddenly he asked me: ‘So, tell me. Do you know Tukhachevsky?’ I said yes, and he said ‘How?’. So then I said: ‘At one of my concerts. After the concert, Tukhachevsky came backstage to congratulate me. He said he liked my music, that he was an admirer. He said he’d like to meet me when he came to Leningrad to talk about music. He said it would be a pleasure to discuss music with me. He said if I came to Moscow he’d be happy to see me.’ ‘And how often did you meet?’ ‘Only when Tukhachevsky came here. He usually invited me for dinner.’ - ‘Who else was at the table?’ ‘Just his family. His family and relatives.’ - ‘And what did you discuss?’ ‘Mostly music.’ - ‘Not politics?’ ‘No, we never talked politics. I knew how things were.’ - ‘Dmitri Dmitryevich, this is very serious. You must remember. Today is Saturday. I’ll sign your pass and you can go home. But on Monday noon, you must be here. Don’t forget now. This is very serious, very important.’ I understood this was the end. Those two days until Monday were a nightmare. I told my wife I probably wouldn’t return. She even prepared a bag for me - the kind prepared for people who were taken away. She put in warm underwear. She knew I wouldn’t be back. I went back there at noon [on Monday] and reported to reception. There was a soldier there. I gave him my [internal] passport. I told him I’d been summoned. He looked for my name: first, second, third list. He said: ‘Who summoned you?’ I said: ‘Inspector Zakovsky.’ He said: ‘He won’t be able to see you today. Go home. We’ll notify you.’ He returned my passport and I went home. It was only later that evening that I learned that the inspector had been arrested.”


If there ever was a carnival in which today you are a king and tomorrow a beggar, this was it! [16] A common sense reproach nonetheless imposes itself here: is there not a rather obvious fundamental difference between the carnival proper and the Stalinist purges? In the first case, the entire social hierarchy is momentarily suspended, those who were up are down and vice versa, while, in the case of Stalinism, the unexpected and “irrational” change of fortunes affects only those who are subjected to power - far from being threatened, far from its power being even symbolically suspended, the Communist nomenklatura uses the “irrational” shifts of arbitrary terror to fortify its rule… There are, however, moments of paroxysm in which revolutionary terror effectively reaches carnivalesque dimensions, i.e., in which, like the proverbial snake, the ruling Party starts to eat itself, gradually swallowing its own tail. The surprising fact that “the most dangerous place to be was close to the centres of power” clearly distinguishes Stalinism from Fascist regimes - here are the results of the mere 2 years of yezhovshchina: “Five of Stalin’s Politburo colleagues were killed, and 98 out of 139 Central Committee members. Of the Central Committee of the Ukraine Republic only three out of 200 survived; 72 of the 93 members of the Komsomol organization Central Committee perished. Out of 1.996 party leaders at the Seventeenth Congress in 1934, 1.108 were imprisoned or murdered. In the provinces 319 out of 385 regional party secretaries and 2.210 out of 2.750 district secretaries died.” [17] This self-devouring frenzy renders problematic the theory of Stalinist Nomenklatura as the New Class.

 

http://www.lacan.com/zizstalin.htm

[21] Posted by The Plantagenets on 7-2-2012 at 08:23 PM · [top]

I have a tremendous love for Shostakovich’s works; and what Yagoda and Yezhov did to good people, Shostakovich and many, many others; was truly evil.

But as Christians, don’t we have a duty to tell this committee from Forth Worth, no matter how much we abhor the persecution they are pursuing, how things turned out for Yagoda and Yezhov, after they did what was asked of them by the leaders?

Did not, after all, both Genrikh Yagoda and Nicolai Yezhov have immortal souls?

Luke 6:28

[22] Posted by Just a Baptist on 7-2-2012 at 08:51 PM · [top]

The Episcopal Church is like a lump of modelling clay.  It can be molded into many shapes and forms, and the liberals now running the henhouse have taken the Church into their hands and done just exactly that.  Nothing they do ever comes as a surprise to me.  Whatever the spirit of the day is, they manage to duplicate it and use it for their purposes.

[23] Posted by cennydd13 on 7-3-2012 at 11:03 AM · [top]

So the mission of the church continues. You would think that they would have something better to do.

Dallas won’t leave unless tec leaves the Anglican Communion.

[24] Posted by martin5 on 7-3-2012 at 06:41 PM · [top]

On further thought, it is difficult to take this bright idea seriously - the governance of TEC is almost incoherent, so how on earth are they going to administer an extra vetting process?

About the only positive thing that can be said about Katherine Schori’s ability as an administrator is that she is no worse than her predecessor, the woefully incompetent Frank Griswold!  Between them, they have seen TEC’s membership and income nose-dive over a 15 year period.  With the number of liberals in USA (similar to any western country) they should have been able to manage it better than they did.

And an organisation headed by people of similar “talent” to Griswold and Schori is going to take on this extra role, whilst at the same time carrying out complex tasks like balancing its budget…?! Please.

[25] Posted by MichaelA on 7-4-2012 at 04:22 AM · [top]

#21, 22. Shostakovich lived in an era, place, and circumstances that none of us would wish for ourselves, our families, or any human being.

Out of that came the 5th and 10th symphonies.

The 2nd and 3rd symphonies weren’t successful, and the opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and the 4th symphony headed in a brilliant direction that went against Stalin’s ideas of what music should be.

Faithful Episcopalians and other Christians are living in an era, place, and circumstances that none of us would wish for ourselves, our families, or any human being.

Out of that will come good, because God is present, standing with us in these evil times.

[26] Posted by Ralph on 7-4-2012 at 06:21 AM · [top]

#16, Lakeland two. Right, many liberals don’t care as you mentioned as long as they get their way.  I think some are after total liquidation/destruction not decimation. Why liquidate one tenth, when you could liquidate everything? There is an even smaller group of liberals who probably think that TEC will rebound in membership and those churches will be filled with ‘enthusiastic Episcopalians’. The interesting thing is that there has been outrage over the costs of litigation and the awful mess that is TEC’s budget from some liberals.  The old adage “what is mine is mine and what is yours is also mine” holds true today for some liberals in TEC.  This is no way to run any organization.  Sadly, I have seen such behavior in other much smaller organizations. The general decline is the same and the outcome will surely be the same.

[27] Posted by SC blu cat lady on 7-4-2012 at 08:03 AM · [top]

This:

The Church of England called; it would like all its property back that you guys made off with between 1776-1789

Brilliant, thanks Martha.

I had thought this was mainly a continuation of the PBs pottery-breaking rage over breakaway churches, the ACNA and the like.

On reading though, it seems TEC is terrified of Texan Diocese leaving wholesale.

Good Luck with that…  I’ve lived there, ya gotta love those Texans…  As a STATE they’re very proud of their ability to be independent.  As churchfolk, I can only imagine how fired up they must be now.  And to attempt to intimidate them in this manner?

[28] Posted by Father Wash-Ashore on 7-4-2012 at 09:02 AM · [top]

We believe strongly that, as we vote, each Deputy and Bishop should be fully informed of the position of each bishop-elect on these fundamental issues and consider the grave spiritual, missional, and financial costs of the schisms…

Really? Really?? Really??? They are now concerned about fundamental issues, schism and spiritual issues as a LITMUS TEST FOR BISHOPS? How sadly ironic and blind.

[29] Posted by Festivus on 7-9-2012 at 01:20 PM · [top]

The thing you have to remember is that liberals have no principles; they only have goals. When they assert principles as the basis of their arguments, they are always lying (perhaps to themselves as well as their interlocutors). Whenever they find that their professed principles no longer promote their goals, they will change their principles - which demonstrates that they were never really principles to start with.

Pluralism is the most obvious of these fake liberal principles. The handful of liberals who actually turned out to be committed to pluralism are now classified as conservatives in the rapidly shifting spectrum of the Episcopal episcopate.

[30] Posted by Roland on 7-10-2012 at 01:53 PM · [top]

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