This year has been a year of many changes, some rather drastic.  We have seen big changes in the economy, in politics, in weather and in society in general.  We saw gas jump to over $4.00 a gallon, then drop to $1.50 at the end of the year.  
    We saw the collapse of the big financial companies who had convinced millions to invest in the fantasy that stocks and real estate would continue to grow in value every year forever.  We saw bailouts of huge corporations that were failing because of their own mistakes, while many smaller businesses folded with no offers of help from the government.
    In weather, we saw the worse tornado season on record, we saw the arctic ice cap shrink to it’s smallest, we saw hurricanes form quickly and become very powerful in one day due to warmer waters.  We say the continues extremes of major floods in some areas and droughts in others.  
    In politics, we can only hope that the next eight years will give us government of the people and an end to government of the big corporations (and that’s all I’ll say on the subject since I want to avoid getting into politics on this blog).
    Of course, the area of most interest to me is religion and spirituality and those Year in Review TV shows and newspaper articles rarely mention the subject, so I will.  
    On the negative side, we have seen actions by some conservative churches that have had the effect of turning many against religion.  We heard the Pope express continued support of the ban against women in the priesthood.  This at a time when they are closing down churches due to a shortage of priests.  We saw many gays and friends of gays turn against religion because of the support by these conservative churches of proposition 8 in California that banned same-sex marriage several months after it had been legalized.  Now atheist organizations are trying to get the gay groups to join them in opposition to religion getting involved in politics, so not a smart move by those churches. 
    On the positive side, there has been significant growth in interfaith groups so people of all faiths can learn to understand one another and live together in harmony.  I’ve also read that interest and studies on spirituality is gaining popularity in colleges.  We even saw a book on spiritual development get on the Oprah Book Club!  I, of course, am particularly pleased that we are seeing growing interest in Mystic and Gnostic teachings since that is what the International Community of Christ is all about.


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