Alex Williams contributed to this report 2. Limit Kaepernick’s weaponsBack in their 32-20 loss to the 49ers in Week 6, the Cardinals’ secondary struggled to contain tight end Vernon Davis, as he went off for 180 receiving yards and two long touchdowns. And that was with a healthy Tyrann Mathieu and Rashad Johnson.Sunday will be an even bigger challenge, as wide receiver Michael Crabtree is back and looking more and more like the big-play threat he was a season ago.Patrick Peterson, who was voted to his third Pro Bowl this week, has not fared well against Crabtree of late — allowing 13 catches for 144 yards and four touchdowns. Although it’s a lot to put on his shoulders, if Peterson struggles against Crabtree, it might be a long afternoon for the Cardinals’ defense, as Kaepernick will have Davis, Crabtree and Anquan Boldin as credible down-the-field options.3. Win the turnover battleArizona has won both contests this season when Carson Palmer has thrown three or more interceptions — including last week’s dramatic 17-10 come-from-behind victory in Seattle — but it’s an awfully slippery slope to live that way.One the Cardinals paid for dearly back at Candlestick Park earlier this year. The Arizona Cardinals head into their Week 17 matchup with plenty at stake for the first time since the 2009-10 season. With a victory over the San Francisco 49ers, the Cardinals would secure their first 11-win since moving to the Valley back in 1988 and put themselves in a position to secure the second Wild Card spot in the NFC should Tampa beat New Orleans. The task at hand will not be an easy one, as the 49ers not only have plenty to play for — including a first-round bye and division title — but have won three straight dating back to 2011. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact 0 Comments Share Top Stories Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Two Palmer interceptions, two late fumbles and a safety were more than enough to turn a back-and-forth contest into a comfortable victory for San Francisco. When the Cardinals have been at their best offensively this season — i.e. vs. the Colts, Falcons and Rams — they’ve protected the football. Todd Bowles’ unit might have bailed out Arizona’s offense against the Seahawks, but banking on a repeat performance this week would be an unwise decision.University of Phoenix Stadium will be packed Sunday, but it would all be for naught if the home crowd is silenced early on with a handful of costly mistakes. Keys for the 49ers1. Get after Palmer Palmer has never been known as an athletic quarterback, and his immobility is only highlighted by the fact that he’s dealing with a sprained ankle. Couple that with his tendency to turn the ball over when under pressure, and it makes sense that San Francisco would do everything it can to pressure the former No. 1 overall pick out of USC. But Arizona has gotten creative in its protection, using tight ends and backs to help an offensive line that can get outmatched on the edges. Still, San Francisco shouldn’t have much of an issue dialing up the pressure on Palmer, and that will likely mean trouble for the Cardinals. 2. Find Vernon DavisIt’s no secret that despite the success of the Arizona Cardinals’ defense this season, it’s struggled against tight ends this season. The 49ers have one of the league’s elite receiving tight ends in Davis, and he went off to the tune of eight catches for 180 yards and two touchdowns in the teams’ first matchup this season. San Francisco’s offense has struggled to find a rhythm throughout parts of the season, but Davis gives them an outlet when things aren’t going well. If the 6-foot-3, 250-pounder can continue being a safety net for Kaepernick, it’s only going to mean good things for the 49ers. 3. Start fastSunday’s game is obviously a high-stakes contest for both teams involved, and the Cardinals will come out as fired up as they’ve been all season. Couple that with a noisy University of Phoenix Stadium, and the ingredients are there for the Cardinals to build early momentum and roll from there. The 49ers need to create something positive early to take the crowd out of the game and deflate a pumped up Arizona team. It doesn’t matter much whether that comes in the form of an early turnover or big play on offense, as long as San Francisco can manufacture some kind of momentum for itself. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling In the teams’ first head-to-head showdown back on Oct. 13, the Cardinals hung tough at Candlestick Park for about three-and-a-half quarters before the wheels fell off. Costly fumbles by Alfonso Smith and Larry Fitzgerald and an 18-play, 89-yard touchdown drive sealed Arizona’s fate in a 32-20 loss.Keys for the Cardinals1. Don’t focus on the scoreboardIn an effort to add more meaning to their Week 17 slate of games, the NFL moved the Buccaneers-Saints game back to the same time slot as the Cardinals-49ers.While they need Tampa Bay to win in order to have a shot at postseason play, the Cardinals can’t make scoreboard watching their focus on Sunday.If they do, a very talented 49ers team will have no problem taking advantage.“The only thing that’s going to matter to us is what’s happening on the field,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Friday. “That game doesn’t matter unless our scoreboard is reading right.” Let’s hope that decree on Friday holds true if the games remain tight late Sunday afternoon.A win in Seattle and a Tampa Bay win in New Orleans will mean absolutely nothing without an Arizona win, as well.
Vancouver BC Celebrates True Parents’ BirthdayBy FFWPU Canada, Larry Krishnek : On Saturday evening, February 6th, FFWPU, UPF and WFWP co-hosted this third public commemoration of our True Parents’ Birthday. Vancouver Pastor Rev. Katsumi Kambashi and the local FFWPU family worked together to create an important and memorable event.Many Ambassadors for Peace and representatives from numerous faiths were on hand to join the celebration and to learn more about the True Parents and their work to build a world of peace through the creation of ideal families.North American Continental Director, Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, was the featured speaker. He had attended the inaugural banquet two years ago and shared with us how enthusiastically Mother Moon received the news of such a gathering and how she encouraged all communities to do the same.Welcoming remarks were given by a local rabbi and friend of Alan and Michiko Wilding, UPF Directors for Western Canada. The Rabbi explained how dramatically his perspective on the Unification church changed once he could learn from the Wildings the worldview of True Parents. He is particularly moved by the role the Blessing plays in realizing world peace.Mr. John Abelseth, Blessing Family Ministry leader for Canada explained more in depth the meaning and process of the Blessing and some of his own personal experience.A very touching video presentation of the 2012 Blessing in Korea was shown. Several of the young couples attending and supporting the event were participants in that Blessing.It was appropriate that a celebration of the birth of True Parents would focus on the Blessing. I’m sure everyone in the room , regardless of their cultural or religious traditions, were touched in some way by the knowledge of how present God can be in Blessed marriage life. Marriage Blessing and True Parents’ Birthday Celebration in TorontoFFWPU Canada, Lilly Tadin: Toronto FFWPU, UPF, and WFWP jointly hosted a Marriage Blessing and True Parent’s Birthday Celebration on Feb. 6, 2016. The event was held at the King’s Garden Banquet Hall.In the late afternoon, the beautiful banquet hall was buzzing with happy couples who came to receive the marriage blessing. Proudly, they were greeting participants and letting them know that they came to receive the blessing.The occasion began with the Blessing Ceremony of all the participating couples; officiated by Dr. and Mrs. Moonshik Kim. Rev. Paul T. Musembwa and Unity Chang as Masters of Ceremony embraced the participants with excitement and joy. Rev. John Funelas, a chaplain, offered the invocation. After the holy wine and holy water ceremony, Martin Gray played Song of the Banquet on his violin. Rev. Stoyan Tadin offered congratulatory remarks to the newly blessed couples.The musical offering, holy wine, exchange of rings, messages about the blessings, brought the couples to embrace and put their arms around each other. The faces of the newly blessed couples were beaming with joy.All of us were fillied with gratitude for being able to offer these precious blessed couples as future citizens of the world, who chose to start their journey today. Months of planning, educating and guiding couples is a real testimony of faith and commitment. We know that we took the first steps in blessing sons and daughters of God, and it gave us confidence and reassurance that indeed it can be done.After the ceremony, photos were taken with happy participants. Each couple wanted to take photos with their friends as this was their moment of pride and joy.The second part of the program was the celebration of True Parents Birthday. During the lovely buffet dinner, Roderick Lutao entertained the audience with his nice performance.After dinner, the main program began. The invocation was given by Paul T. Musembwa. Dr. Kim spoke about True Parents’ lives with on-screen images of their lives. For some participants, it was their first time to hear about True Parents life of sacrifice and their unyielding commitment to God and all of the humanity. Furthermore, some were so moved by the message, that during the musical performances, they were reading Father’s autobiography, the “Peace Loving Citizen”.Martin Gray and his violin graced us again with Partita No. 3 by J.S. Bach. Dr. Hoossen Auckbaraullee who had an opportunity to hear True Father speak numerous times in person, gave congratulatory remarks for True Parents’ Birthday. A video was shown revealing the Lives of Rev. and Mrs. Moon.The main highlight was the keynote address by Archbishop George Augustus Stallings, Jr. who traveled from the United States to join us for the event. His talk was very passionate and so moving to so many. Archbishop Stallings started from the term ‘birthday’ and then expanded to saying that we have to know why we were born, the purpose of life, and who I am. He said before we are physical we are spiritual, meaning that we should place emphasis on our spiritual lives. Quite a number of people said they were spiritually revived through his talk.After the uplifting and inspiring talk by Archbishop Stallings, S.G. Joshua Paghubasan, and Hannah Winters offered flowers to True Parents. A birthday cake was cut followed by a group photo.Lilac Cana a very talented Philipino performer sang three beautiful songs; one of them was The Prayer. Her soprano voice moved the audience to their feet. The Second Generation Dance Team performed two dances. One of them was to Bruno Mars song, Uptown Funk. The dances were led by the young and very skilled dancers, Eri Young and Hitomi Dixon. It was good to see the enthusiastic audience clapping and moving their bodies along with the performers. Dr. Chae Hee Lee termed their dance style as ‘Post-Modernism.’A Filipino DJ hosted a dance afterward which went on until about 11 PM. Both, young and old found themselves on the floor dancing, hopping and singing. It was nice to see so many of our members dancing with their children. This was indeed a wonderful way to celebrate True Parents birthday. Happy Birthday True Parents, we love you and thank you for being such an integral part of our lives.
Freemasonry first became official in 1717, and is a well-known yet also highly secretive brotherhood. While the organization has made a conscious effort in opening its doors to the media in recent years, the details of their ceremonies have been kept under wraps. With all the pomp and ceremony associated with Freemasons, it’s easy to think of them as fanatically religious. However, despite their mystical symbols and rituals, the subject of God is actually downplayed.A CBS News article from 2013 quoted Masonic historian Brent Morris. He saw Freemasonry as largely separate from religious fervor, and a brotherly alternative to the bitter conflicts being fought between groups such as Catholics and Protestants:“(So) when the Freemasons were formed, [they] said, ‘Here’s a group of men that agree that God is central in their lives, they can even agree that God compels them to do good in the community, then they can shut up after that.’ That was a radical concept — that men could get together and agree on that fundamental level, and then get on with their lives.”A meeting of the Order of the Pug.This certainly wasn’t the place for non-believers, with atheists shown the door. Even so, the Catholic Church were not impressed. They saw the fraternity as a possible breeding ground for dangerous political thought, and in 1738 Pope Clement XII banned Catholics from joining the new flock.He did this through a decree called a “papal bull.” The name comes from the traditional lead seal used on documents, but the animal connection is important. That’s because in the same year a collective referring to itself as The Order of the Pug was formed.Members called themselves Mops (the German for Pug), novices were initiated wearing a dog collar.What was The Order of the Pug? It was devised by Clemens August of Wittelsbach, the Elector of Cologne, and in essence comprised of a group of Freemasons in Germany, who tweaked the format to facilitate their now-forbidden activities. The image of the pug was chosen for its qualities of loyalty, trust, and a steadfast character. All things that would come in handy when defying the wishes of the Pope!Porcelain pug figurine.The canine connection went beyond a name. In order to become a member, or “mop” (German for “pug”), you had to talk the talk, as well as walk the walk. And by walk they meant getting down on all fours. With a collar fastened around their neck, they would paw at the entrance, before being led in and woofed at by the assembled frat.Mysterious Ancient Societies That Disappeared into the history books.In addition to carrying a silver Pug medallion, there was also the small matter of kissing a dog’s behind. Thankfully it belonged to a porcelain pooch rather than a real one. The Order’s methods were eccentric in some ways but surprisingly progressive in others.One of the secret songs of the Order of the Pug.Women were allowed to be part of the organization as well as men. On the website The Masonic Trowel, the “Mopses” are described as “an androgynous, both sexes, Order,” one which “admitted females to all the offices, except that of Grand Master, which was held for life. There was, however, a Grand Mistress, and the male and female heads of the Order alternately assumed, for six months each, the supreme authority.”Women were allowed to be part of the organization as well as men. Exhibit in the Wadsworth Atheneum – Hartford, Connecticut, USA.Going back to the subject of porcelain, the UK’s National Trust Collections lists a piece called ‘The Lady of the Order of the Pug’ (‘Dame von Mops Orden’), sculpted by Johann Joachim Kändler around 1745.Portrait of Princess Ekaterina Dmitrievna Golitsyna by Louis-Michel van Loo (1759)“In her arms is a pet pug with a pink collar, while another in a blue-collar, partially hidden by the woman’s voluminous skirt worn over a pannier, relaxes at her feet…. The figure of the lady was commissioned by the ‘Printzessin von Herfordt,’ Princess Henriette Amalie of Anhalt-Dessau (1720–93), an unmarried mother who had been exiled to a religious foundation for noble ladies at Herford and at the time was Canoness of Herford.”Hard-paste porcelain figure of a member of the Order of the Pug,Such artistic displays indicate the Order was fairly well-known, even though Freemasons are supposed to operate in private. A book was written about them in 1745, with the catchy title of L’ordre des Franc-Maçons trahi et le Secret des Mopses révélé.Read another story from us: King used reverse psychology to make potatoes seem “worth enough to steal”They were said to die out as attitudes toward Freemasonry changed, though some accounts claim they carried on into the early 20th century. Maybe the appearance of being defunct is a masterstroke on the part of the Order, and that even now they could be crawling around on the floor barking out future plans…Steve Palace is a writer, journalist and comedian from the UK. Sites he contributes to include The Vintage News, Art Knews Magazine and The Hollywood News. His short fiction has been published as part of the Iris Wildthyme range from Obverse Books.