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CELEBRATE WHAT WE HAVE IN COMMON NOT WHERE WE DIFFER

 Loitering and ‘being’ opens the horizons of the mind and heart, it also challenges prejudice.
Meeting people from around our world. people with who we have much in common, others who see the world quite differently from us, all make a rich and interesting tapestry.

At a Vigil held in the city of Melbourne where I work, after a tragic incident to place, I observed a diversity not always appreciated. Mostly this is often as a result of ignorance, fear and mistrust of other.

Sitting after the vigil with a man, a complete stranger to me, we held hands we chatted about what we have in common.

He a Hindu and me a white anglo-saxon commonly known as ‘a Christian”.

Both affected by what had happened, both deeply moved by the service and both saying how at times like this we need each other.

While we do love ‘our’ country, and want it to ‘be safe’ and for some just like ‘the good ol’ days’, we are called to love.

For those of us who claim to ‘love God with all our heart, strength and mind’ sometimes forget to love neighbour as self.

I don’t expect its always easy, its not for me, so together lets strive to get it, who knows we may even look back one day and claim these were the ‘good ol’ day’!!


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we are what we believe we are (C.S.Lewis)

Last week was the anniversary of the death of a mate.

Leigh was a young man I got to know through working with adolescents in ‘out of home care’.He was 13 when I first met him, always  likeable as a teenager.


I reconnected with Leigh after his release from prison.

Together with the support of his Nan, Aunty and many others Leigh began a new journey.

His courage and effort to make change was amazing.

Leigh had reason to be ‘angry at the world’. 

He had reason to be angry at some of the people in his life.

From time to time this anger did surface, but he always came through it.

As I sat with his Nan, who he adored and who stuck with him through thick and thin, but never let his sometimes ‘bad behaviour’ go unchecked, we spoke about how much he was missed, and how he believed stuff about himself that was not true.
At the table was one of Leigh’s aunties who along with her family adored him too.

We chatted and shared memories of Leigh.

As I was leaving I was handed copies of three letter Leigh had written but never posted.

One to his mother, one to his brother and one to Nan. 

As I read these the Leigh we knew and loved, his true self shone through, thoughtful, reflective, caring, loving and honest. 

Leigh was part of a very broken ‘system’, one which has been in the spotlight again in recent days. (There were those in that system who encouraged and supported Leigh too).

We miss Leigh, and will remember him for who he was, not for the person he sometimes thought he was, because much of who he thought he was reinforced by a system where compassion and love often give way to harshness and punishment.

It’s been a year since you departed Leigh and those who loved you best, miss you most.







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BEWILDERED PERPLEXED PUZZLED

By now you will be aware of the events in part of the CBD in Melbourne.

We as a part of the community have been involved in the community support.

There is nothing more to say, so I’ll leave you with our sign message….

JESUS
WEPT


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SEASONS GREETINGS

PEACE ON EARTH AND GOODWILL TO ALL. 

MAY JOY, PEACE AND LOVE SURROUND YOU THIS CHRISTMAS.



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Category : Uncategorized


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in money we trust

todays blog is a song which as we hurtle towards the silly season it might be worth thinking about

If in money we trust If in money we trust

And you bite the dust

And it’s not enough If in money you trust 

But it’s not enough

And you bite the dust
If in money you trust
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
If in money we trust
If in money we trust
No substitute
No substitute
No substitute
When god is dead
And it’s not enough
Then in money you trust
Then they call the bluff
When god is dead
And money’s not enough
In what do you trust
When it’s not enough?

Where’s God?
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
When god is dead
And it’s not enough
What substitute
What substitute
When God is dead
And it’s not enough
When God is dead
And it’s not enough

If in money you trust

If in money you trust
But it’s not enough
Then you call the bluff
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
Where’s God?
No substitute
No substitute

You’ve got to think it through again
You’ve got to think it through again
You’ve got to think it through again
You’ve got to think it through again
Got to think it through again
You got to think it through again
Got to think it through again
Got to think it through again
Songwriters: Van Morrison

If in Money We Trust lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Van Morrison

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when will jesus return???

Driving through a country city recently, I spotted a sign posing the age old question…when will jesus return??? As a kid this was the subject of many a ‘sermon’, ‘discussion’ and ‘debate’, people became wealthy writing endless books about it, there was even a ‘movie’ or two made to try and answer that very question!!
I reckon Jesus will return when good and ready!!

Maybe the more important question is, what ever this ‘return’ might look like, is how are  things since Jesus ‘left”??

Have we stuffed things up?, how have we loved our enemies? and have we loved our neighbours as our selves?

How are we doing on the ‘stranger’ and ‘sojourner’ front?, how is the planet looking?

Who have we in excluded rather than include?

Has ‘justice been served’?

Has God’s will been on earth as in heaven?

Have I though of  the needs and desirers others over my own?

Now ask yourself, when Jesus ‘returns’, how ready are you?

If I think my faith and you think your faith is is about ‘pie in the sky in the sweet by and by, you’d be wrong, its more like ‘steak on the plate while we wait’!!

before worrying over Jesus return, ask yourself has justice been done?, have we loved kindness? and have we walked humbly with God?… THEN if time permits spent time concerning yourself with Jesus return, OR get on with humbly walking with God….. you might run into Jesus along the way!!!

Them people might say…………………………………………………………….

Category : Uncategorized


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beautiful feet

Speaking recently  with a friend as he told me the story of his adopted sisters arrival,
he himself is adopted, and this story was relayed to me as we prepared the funeral service for their father.

He described a time when his dad was still in bed and he and his wife heard the foot steps of their daughter as a toddler coming down the hall , on hearing her foot steps, that they knew they had made the right choice in adopting her.

It is said ‘how beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news’.


As we  many of us prepare to celebrate the arrival of  Jesus, and as we consider those who were trusted with the task of bearing the good news, the dodgy, the mistrusted, the ‘low life’, the confused, the bewildered, the marginalised and the vunerable it  is true of them that they indeed had beautiful feet.

GOOD TIDINGS (NEWS) OF GREAT JOY

DONT BE AFRAID I BRING GOOD NEWS OF GREAT JOY

FOR ALL PEOPLE


(painting By Gabby Willmott: based on my partners feet)

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listen hear do



There is often discussion about speaking-preaching and being and doing.

IS one more vital than the other?

How many bible verses can we quote to each other to ‘prove’ our point??!!

One such writer suggest than often what we hear may soon be forgotten, which in no way throws doubt on the spoken word.

Perhaps its the human thing to do to justify our own position or calling?

I recently caught up with a mate who is a story teller and artists, as he draws and tells stories.
He creates images which stay with you, and so reinforce what is being said.

He has been in recent days working with a large corporation as they transition into a new phase.
At one of the venues he was going out to get his morning coffee As he walked past the reception area, where the person who had put all the arrangements in place for the day, was sitting he simply asked if they would like a coffee too.

In 20 years working in that position this person had never been asked if they would like a coffee.
This became the talking point among the 100’s attending his seminars.
Why? maybe because his actions reflected his words?

Over recent weeks my partner The Ruth and I have taken numerous wedding and funeral services.
After one funeral recently someone approached Ruth and commented that when we lead people through this times and as we sit and eat with them it brings calm and offers hope for the future.

So if you’re not someone who gets to speak in public or you’re  the silent’ type, don’t be embarrassed , you’re actions are important.

Maybe, just maybe, actions do speak louder than word??

God help me to know when to speak up AND when shut up!!!!

Category : Calm , Comfort , Compassion , Despair , Doubt , Hope , Peace


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Aspire not to have more but to be more

These words were said by Oscar Romero who was a Roman Catholic Archbishop who was assassinated for his beliefs. He was a strong advocate for social justice and peace.

We are about to enter the silly season – advent is upon us and Christmas is just around the corner. A time of indulgence and excess – a time to give loads of presents and eat loads of food and maybe, if we have time, to remember the little baby in Bethlehem.

I love Christmas and I really don’t want to take any of the fun stuff away from it but the more Christmases I have the more I realise that the stuff is not what it’s all about. Presents are brilliant and I really like getting them but  I’m seeing that it’s the reason for the gifts that is important not the gifts themselves. 

Someone wants to give me a Christmas present – great but why do they want to? Because I mean something to them and they are thinking about me at this time.

I want to give my friend a gift for Christmas because I want them to know I’m thinking about them and I value their friendship. What the gift is isn’t really that important (although I do try and give people something they would like) it’s the fact that I’m thinking of them.

And that’s what Christmas has always been about us knowing that we are being thought about. That is true of the first Christmas – God gives us Jesus as a present to let us know he is thinking about us and we do the same year after year.

This week we enter Advent – that time of waiting for the whole Christmas thing to start. If you are anything like me its a time for buying all those presents we mean to give and writing those cards you want to send. 

This year, as you do that, remember why you are buying gifts and writing cards and remembering all those people.

This Christmas aspire not to have more but to be more.