Category Archives: be excellent to each other

  • 0

HOMELESSNESS IS UGLY

Working on the streets and being involved in peoples lives is challenging.
I get that, I get that it creates inconvenience, I get that it may  not ‘be a good look’ for the streetscape and I even get its ugly…….HOMELESS IS UGLY, BUT its not those who are homeless which makes it ugly!!

I read a recent article in the online version of one of our newspapers The Age,following is a quote from our Lord Mayor taken from that article.

“We should be supportive of people that are vulnerable, but we shouldn’t romanticise the situation,” he said.
“There are challenging, illegal behaviours that we shouldn’t put up with, whether people are homeless or not.”

As I walk the streets on our city, I witness some of the behaviours of those who are not ‘the homeless’, so why do we make statements about those who are vulnerable and often have no voice??


Perhaps Mayor Doyle if we prioritised some real solutions, and made as much effort to care for vulnerable people as we do for the ‘top end of town’ we might believe you actually care.
Just because you give $$ to some organisations to give bandaid solutions, don’t think you can wash your hands of this issue.

You give them soup, but they want their lives back.





  • 0

Here we go again……….

You could be forgiven for thinking that the US was the only place on Earth there was an election going on.

While the quality of candidates both here and there are about on par, you probable won’t get  wealthy business people from the US suggesting we need a dictator to step in, as we have here in Australia!!

At the very basic level you would hope our political leaders would be the voice of the voiceless and not the wealthy!!

Sure perhaps an enquiry into the union movement is needed, so is one into the banking and finance sector, sadly the issues with the bank/ finance sector are not seen as moral issues, only of the safe schools program or marriage equality are deemed to be the only ‘moral’ issues up for debate.

We ought to be providing housing for the homeless, shelter for the asylum seeker and support for those who have issues around their mental health.
Sadly these issues are left to smaller political parties with weird names.

So as we become further disillusioned with our politicians we sail towards a ‘hung parliament’.

If we do have a ‘Hung’ Parliament lets hope its ‘Well Hung”!!!


  • 0

#TogetherStronger

You may think that this week’s sign is a bit strange – and you might be right. If you look on Twitter the hashtag #TogetherStonger is the hashtag for the Welsh Soccer team. As of today they are in the semi finals of the Euro 2016 soccer championship. This is unheard of and (being honest) quite unexpected.

So we at the Melbourne Welsh Church wish to show our support for the Welsh Team as they play Portugal on Thursday morning our time. C’mon Wales!

But thinking about it – #TogetherStronger is a great idea. If we’re honest (and by that I mean Welsh Soccer fans) we don’t have that many world class, top name players. (One of our strikers doesn’t even have a contract for next season yet!) Apart form Gareth Bale we don’t have any world beating superstars. In fact mention the names of the Welsh team to most soccer fans and they’ll know a few of them and have heard of some of them but we don’t have a team of over paid stars like, say, the English soccer team. Most of the English players are household names in football – well known and well paid players who play for big teams and expect success. By comparison the Welsh boys were just pleased to get to the Euros at all – it’s our first major championship for about 50 years.

To get to the semifinals is a huge achievement for Welsh football. It shows that a star team can beat a team of stars and that we are greater than the sum of our parts; that we are #TogetherStronger. To Chris Coleman (the manager) and all the staff and players we can only say well done, keep it up, you’ve made your nation proud!!!!

If I was asked to go and talk to the Welsh team before the game I would give them this advice from
Joshua – it fits the hashtag #TogetherStronger (and it can apply to all of us as we face the various problems in our lives).

Haven’t I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don’t be timid; don’t get discouraged. GOD, your God, is with you every step you take.”

So Strength, courage, don’t be timid; don’t get discouraged – we are #TogetherStronger be that with teammates on the pitch or with God in life!!


  • 0

A true Christian path would lead them into the untidy stables of the poor and oppressed, to shovel shit with the Messiah. Instead they remain spiritually shipwrecked, floundering on the shoals of their own ambitions and indifference, slick and ridiculous in their genuflections to greed.
From B Cockburn: Rumours of Glory: on thoughts of Brennan Manning


Over the past seven weeks I have had time to read and reflect while a fractured ankle healed.

I read, listened to music and watched movies and documentaries.

I was challenged  as to how and why I do what i do as i loiter.


I was challenged  as to my  responsibility in the communities i live and move, so now I’m back on my feet, i need to implement the “KISS’ method…….

                                                               KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID!!!!!













  • 0

on the turning away

Hey you, hey you, yes you…I wanna talk to you, this is what I heard as I loitered intentionally recently on the streets of Melbourne.

‘It was a bloke who I knew from a community in  another suburb.

I had not see him for a while, and to be honest the last encounter had been a little strange.
Strange, because this man spotted me riding my motorcycle, jumped in his car and started to follow me!!
This man, has a history of severe mental health issues.

This chance encounter was a bit different, although I did have an uneasy feeling, and I made a snap decision to keep it short.

After a brief conversation we went our separate ways.

I was reflecting on that encounter recently while listening to some Pink Floyd on vinyl.

I considered the words from the song, on the turning away.


On the turning away
From the pale and downtrodden
And the words they say
Which we won’t understand
“Don’t accept that what’s happening
Is just a case of others’ suffering
Or you’ll find that you’re joining in
The turning away” 
It’s a sin that somehow
Light is changing to shadow
And casting it’s shroud
Over all we have known
Unaware how the ranks have grown
Driven on by a heart of stone
We could find that we’re all alone
In the dream of the proud 
On the wings of the night
As the daytime is stirring
Where the speechless unite
In a silent accord
Using words you will find are strange
And mesmerised as they light the flame
Feel the new wind of change
On the wings of the night 
No more turning away
From the weak and the weary
No more turning away
From the coldness inside
Just a world that we all must share
It’s not enough just to stand and stare
Is it only a dream that there’ll be
No more turning away?

I am aware that not all those I encounter are my ‘responsibility’, however on this occasion i wonder if a meal or coffee together may have been appropriate? I may never know, I can only hope that we meet again, or I hear that still small voice and respond.




Leunig







  • 0

National Anthems ARE NOT FOR THE FAINT HEARTED

I often wondered why we don’t sing the other verses to out NA.I am happy to be a citizen in Australia, sadly our history is littered with hurt and mistakes.One would have thought we might have learnt from them, but it appears not.



A verse from our ‘anthem’ with additions in brackets by me….Beneath our radiant Southern CrossWe’ll toil with hearts and hands;To make this Commonwealth of oursRenowned of all the lands;( for being a pack of bastards)For those who’ve come across the seas ( to stop the boats and send them back)We’ve boundless plains to share;(not really but it sounds good)With courage let us all combine(courage to do the right thing is lacking)To Advance Australia Fair.(actually Dutton cannot read so me missed this point)In joyful strains then let us sing,Advance Australia Fair. ( then stick our heads back up our bottoms)










  • 0

death is not the end

One of the ‘stuff’ of life issues  which I’m honoured to be part of is  that of taking part in funeral services..
There is a sense of beginning and ending, as one of my mates i met on the streets of melbourne put it, after saying goodbye to a mate, ‘I’ve come to the conclusion death is a mystery’.
This week I along with a club brother, we  support a family with six daughters age 18>4 as they farewell their dad, their mothers partner.
As we sat with them the second to youngest daughters handed us a letter she wrote, which she would like read out at the funeral
This is the stuff of life where the mysterious ways of God are often the only way to make ‘sense’ of tragedy and loss.
When you’re sad and when you’re lonely
And you haven’t got a friend
Just remember that death is not the end
And all that you held sacred
Falls down and does not mend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
When you’re standin’ on their crossroads
That you cannot comprehend
Just remember that death is not the end
And all your dreams have vanished
And you don’t know what’s up the bend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
When the storm clouds gather round you
And heavy rains descend
Just remember that death is not the end
And there’s no one there to comfort you
With a helpin’ hand to lend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Oh, the tree of life is growing
Where the spirit never dies
And the bright light of salvation shines
In dark and empty skies
When the cities are on fire
With the burnin’ flesh of men
Just remember that death is not the end
And you search in vain to find
Just one law abiding citizen
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Songwriters
BOB DYLAN



  • 0

  • 0

IMAGE IS EVERYTHING.

A business in the building next to my office declares ‘Image is everything’, it is also the subject for my ‘sermon’ on Sunday.

Im finding it a tad confronting?

I’ll let you know how it goes.

Meanwhile i may take the advice my 3 year old grandson gave to his mum recently………….

Jed – “Mummy why do you do brush your hair every day? “
Me – “To stop it getting knotty and to make me feel pretty”.
Jed – “but your not pretty”.
Me – “well…. maybe not today, because I’m just in trakkie daks, but when I get dressed up I look pretty, dont I? “

Jed – “um, not really, even then, you should look in the mirror more Mummy”.

Time for a look in the mirror me thinks??

PS: welcome to 2016.


  • 0

blessed are the cheese makers!!

Sleeping rough near a building used for Church, because it is the ‘safest place I know’ explained a bloke to me recently as we chatted.
Mean while inside we conversing at our evening service eating cheese and drinking juice.
I took a plate of cheese and crackers out to ‘J’ and invited him to join me for breakfast the next morning. ‘J’ was a no show.

On arriving at my office today, on my desk was a hand written letter from ‘J’, expressing his thanks for the cheese, which really hit the spot, along with an apology for no turning up for breakfast, a contact number for him and a request to ‘do’ breakfast soon.

Im not sure who is meant by the ‘least’, and what we should do or if cheese is even mentioned, but as far as I’m concerned blessed are the cheese makes because they made an impact on ‘J’.

I reckon the kingdom of heaven belongs to ‘J’ and all who share a similar journey.

thanks be to cheese makers!!
Amen


Upcoming Events

Sep
8
Sun
11:00 am Queen Victoria Hospital Service
Queen Victoria Hospital Service
Sep 8 @ 11:00 am – 12:15 pm
This annual service commemorates the long association the Welsh Church has had with the Queen Victoria Hospital, initiated by  the use of our hall by Dr. Constance Stone as the first out-patient clinic run by