Friday, 30 March 2018


Good Friday here today. Jesus was tortured and brutally crucified on a cross of wood. He was an innocent man. He had not threatened the rulers. He had not committed any crimes. 

To add to that, he had demonstrated the ability to do miracles. So why didn’t he just stop what his persecutors were doing to him? Why didn’t he fight back? Should he have? 

This is what Christians believe. There was something vastly bigger going on than the abuse and death of one man. 

In Old Testament times, God had made a promise to Abraham, during a sacrifice ceremony. Before that ceremony he had asked Abraham to sacrifice his beloved son Isaac. Unbelievably, Abraham made preparations to do so. (What a bad God, you say. What a bad Dad. Bad stuff all round. In the historical context, human sacrifice to other gods was not rare in those very ancient days. 

Nedesem USA, from Memecentre.

Abraham would have heard of it in some cultures he passed through. ) He made all the preparations , but at the last moment...
It’s quite gripping reading, have a look yourself, link at the end of this post. Afterward, God said to Abraham:

15 The angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven a second time 16 and said, “I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, 18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.”

-The Bible , NIV .

In Law, one contract on the exact same subject supersedes another. If I make a new will and testament today, it will wipe out the previous one I made after my current marriage, (unless it is irretrievably lost. ) God made a bunch of contracts in the Old Testament, along the lines of ancient King/subject relationships, of fealty and sacrifice from the subjects, rewarded by promises of protection and largesse from the God. These are called covenants.

The contract He made in Easter Week is believed by Christians to supersede all previous. (That’s not to say we can’t use them as a guide). He turned the King/subject fealty contract on its head, a complete reversal . He provided the sacrifice of His only Son, Jesus, killed on Good Friday. We get to love Him and each other in return. 

What evidence do we have that the old covenants were superseded, that there was a momentous break? 

I tell you , God is so good at the visuals, he should have been a movie director. He even threw in an earthquake, and a pitch black sky mid afternoon.

Good Friday we had nice herb and spice steamed fish burgers to eat, because traditionally Christians don’t eat meat on that day. We have been having hot cross buns too. It’s still nice in the backyard of an evening this time of year (Autumn.)

Lemon squash (soda) goes well with fish.

Burgers with garlic steamed fish with tartare sauce, salad and homegrown tomatoes. Underneath the candleholder it says this : Handmade for Magill Ceramics  08-8332 1286 . However I have had it many years.

It’s hard to see the flowers as it was low light. iPad doesn’t do flash:



Grainy photo because the iPad doesn’t like low light. Homegrown tomatoes get beautifully ripe and taste good. Fresh tomatoes don’t agree with my tummy but my family eat them off the plants:

Bohemia crystal glasses:

Bible verse of Abraham and Isaac:

Last Year’s Good Friday post (one of them):


Holy Thursday

 Curious this week, I went to look at the Twitter page of a very young activist. David Hogg is one of the teen leaders of the youth movement pushing for gun control in the US. From the day his school was shot up with an automatic weapon, he’s been speechifying to keep momentum going. He’s polished, and prepared, usually. (A couple of times he’s been heard to swear). I went to his page and was pleasantly surprised to see one thing. 

He’s promoting love. Not once but multiple times. He wants cooperation between opposing political parties, tolerance, and love , not hate. 

Excerpt from The Proof of Your Love
- For King and Country
“If I sing but don't have love
I waste my breath with every song
I bring an empty voice, a hollow noise
If I speak with a silver tongue
Convince a crowd but don't have love
I leave a bitter taste with every word I say”.

“Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country”.  Ok, now substitute the word church for country.  With that approach, I should be smiley and open at church, not wait for the congregation to be friendly and open with me, yes?

What if I had tried that for nearly ten years and the congregation were still not chatting with me? What if they preferred to talk to people they’d known a longer time?  I’d probably stop going as often, yes? I’d go less and less frequently until I only went a couple of times a year. It’s less lonely to stay home and listen to the familiar songs and preachers on Christian Radio, than to go to church and feel isolated. God’s tithe? I’d pop it in a charity group’s collection box at the Supermarket. 

Catholic Church, Anglican Church, other traditional churches in the Western World, GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER, you are bleeding congregations! 

On Holy Thursday He gave two main instructions. “Do this in memory of me.” You got that part down pat. The ritual/small victual bit you all do as well as any ancient civilisation or returned soldier league ever did. You even print it in books, so, “this is how we always do it. “

Then we all go home and in many cases, forget all about being Christians until same time next week. 


That doesn’t seem much like the Last Supper to me. Where is the camerarderie?  But wait, there was another, greater instruction on that night with his friends:

“Love one another as I have loved you. “

We live in a world that is getting harsher. We need comfort when we venture through your big doors. If a young family, or homeless person, or new people to town come into your church, are you making them feel welcome? Are you giving them tasks in the church service so they feel useful, wanted? Or are existing members jealously hugging tasks to their breasts as part of their identity (I’m Jack and I’ve been a lectionary reader every week for ten years. I’m Kitty and I do the flowers. Betty over there always cleans. )

So what are the congregants saying to their long time friends after church? Something that often comes up is the ageing of the group. “So few if any of those youngsters doing their Confirmation today are going to come back.” Sure, it’s true. They and their parents are staying away on Sunday mornings, and keeping their church donations, that could have fixed the church roof, or paid the minister’s wages. Lots of churches are getting deconsecrated, closed, and turned into restaurants, art galleries, or private homes. More evidence of the death of IRL (in real life) communities, in a virtual world.


Just ask yourselves why?  Then ask yourselves, what benefits could accrue to your church from being more inclusive?

Jesus was born into the Roman Empire. Business as usual there was to live with ruinous taxes, rise up, protest, get crushed brutally, crucified on the sides of roadways, then mutter darkly until another foolhardy lot tried again. 

Jesus effectively said, well it’s like this: if you do as you’ve always done, you will get what you’ve always had.

His radical point of difference? Love. It is the thing that kept the Christian Church alive for 2000 years, and without Love, the church will die.

We had a Holy Thursday barbecue in the park, with lamb, to symbolise the Passover that Jesus celebrated with his disciples at The Last Supper. We said Grace, and talked about the story of the Jewish Passover. The lamb chops were much more expensive than in the the days before Free Trade. Six cost over $15.00 au. They were beautiful, though, he’s a good butcher. I always cut off the fat. The magpies that are always in the park got that. Ace and I passed our olives to hubby, as we are not into them. The tomatoes are from our back garden, from the raised vegetable bed.

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All the table items we already had, most of them for years, except the flowers:

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Jesus broke the flat bread, and passed the wine around to his friends, so we had grapes to symbolise, and pita bread:

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Last year’s Holy Thursday post:

Sunday, 25 March 2018

SAY “HOW’S ANNA TO THE SON OF DAVID” - (she’s good, mate!)

Palm Sunday 2018 light lunch in the park. 

The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road.The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

“Hosanna to the Son of David!”

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”

11 The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”

From the book of Matthew, The Bible (NIV).

As we got closer to our destination, the skies threatened rain so we set our things down under a picnic shelter with table and benches. I had gone for a selection of foods that might have been available in biblical times or the following centuries on a feast day , plus an Aussie food, the snag (sausage).

It was blowing a stiff wind  by the time we got there, but I was determined to see it through. Acerules and I tied the tablecloth at the four corners. You can see it trying to take off in the photos. Acerules is hanging onto the “palm “ leaves from the florist. I wedged the napkins under the wooden bowls. I already owned them, the goblets and the other non edible items, for many years now. I gave up on cutlery and paper plates, as too many things to catch as they sailed past, and we just ate with our hands. It was quite fun.

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Donkey condiment set . Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. He was rocking slightly in the wind, Acerules pointed out, so I called him Elvis:

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Pottery vase I bought second hand about 14 years ago with a similar one. Maybe funeral urns? We don’t know. Would not be surprised if it was antique. Unfortunately it was a casualty of the wind, which blew it off the table when wrapped in bubble wrap to take home, it fell to the ground with a thud, and broke:

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Nut mix- sunflower seeds, sultanas, pepitas, almonds. It’s called a Low Cholesterol Mix, made by JCs. Ph +61 (0) 397640517   :

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Dates - not too sweet, just nice . Found on palm trees , (but not by me) . Looks like the tablecloth might have been put on upside down, it wouldn’t surprise me, it was billowing so much in the wind when we were putting it on, I started singing “I am Sailing” which made Acerules laugh. 

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Olives, and honey cake with a bit of spice:

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Plus, because it was lunch on a Sunday in the park, in Australia, natural skin sausages from our butcher . They look barbecued, don’t they? They weren’t, because a large group were using that section of the park for an Easter party. They are actually microwaved, with no added fat or oil, indeed some fat drains out of them in cooking. It’s important to prick them all so the skins don’t burst. To get them looking brown like that, try a bit less than one minute per sausage, but increase as needed. I brought them to the park in alfoil. 

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Do you know what is in a lot of our foods and other products that is harmful to nature, in the quantities that we are consuming it? It is palm oil. Large areas of tropical rainforest in Asia are being cleared to plant West African palm tree plantations. The native birds , insects and animals are being decimated. The public face of that tragic culling is this little guy, the orangutan. 

Oliver Spält - Creative Commons.

For some time now , we have been asked to cut out palm oil as much as possible as consumers, to save our furry friends. 

“Orang-utans can live up to 50 years in the wild. Females first reproduce between 10-15 years of age. They give birth at most once every 5 years, and the interval between babies can be as long as 10 years.

Orang-utans usually give birth to a single young, or occasionally twins. Orang-utans stay with their mothers for the first 7-11 years of their life. An infant rides on its mother's body and sleeps in her nest until it is able to survive on its own.

The long time taken to reach sexual maturity, the long interbirth periods, and the fact that orang-utans normally give birth to just a single young mean that orang-utans have an extremely low reproductive rate.

This makes orang-utan populations highly vulnerable to excessive mortality, and means that populations take a long time to recover from population declines.”

- World wildlife Fund. 

Here’s my post from last year on Palm Sunday:


WARNING - Adult content- bad language, adult themes. Not for under age 15s.

Definition of chickenhawk , (come back again! ) -

Original artwork, before manipulation, by
Nevit Dilmen. Creative Commons.

 This week there was consternation in US and in parts of the world when American President Donald Trump hired as National Security Advisor, Mr John Bolton, who is accused of being in favour of war, bigger war, my war’s bigger than your war, five wars are better than four wars, or more , more, gimme more war. 

Original photo before manipulation by Michael Vadon. John R Bolton at CPAC 2017 

However he has never fought in a war. He reportedly admitted to enrolling in the stay at home National Guard to beat the draft, in 1969 during the Vietnam War because, as he said, he did not want to die in a rice paddy. His new employer, Donald Trump , is accused by his opponents of dodging the draft, by producing certificates of “bone spurs” . He has also shown a willingness to start a war.

I sincerely hope these allegations of warmongering, are just over simplistic summaries. Mr John Bolton is said to be a Lutheran, so I researched what Martin Luther (of the Reformation, not M. L-King, ) thought of war. 

"What the proverb says is true: 'War is pleasant to those who have not experienced it.' For young folk--who still have young, hot blood--consider nothing finer than the glory and the victory of war, by which they can shine. These carnal inclinations are easily extinguished later on, when such folk have experienced their own and their relatives' calamity. But before these calamities strike, the world is ignorant of the blessings of peace, and war truly is pleasant to those who have never experienced it. Histories show this. In them seditious people often denounce peace. Since men usually become sluggish and coward in times of quiet, they desire war as a sowing for glory and an opportunity for showing their courage." Martin Luther

From my own experience working with war widows , ex- prisoners of war, and war veterans, I never met one of the latter two, that thought war was good. They were all against it. 

I started laughing as soon as I saw this article (link below) this morning  in one of my in-boxes:

This group like to take off rap music, so their language is bad. However, this is still pretty funny. 

“Fighting is soon begun, but to stop fighting whenever we please does not lie in our power." - Martin Luther

The text in this link is relevant, but not the video on the article

Martin Luther quotes about War

Thursday, 22 March 2018


“ She flays as if drowning,

But surfaces again,
And knows she must go on,
Till they meet again.


Her child left home,
Never to return.
The loving arms are empty,
And longingly they burn.”

Excerpt from “Angel Mom”

by Lesley Couzens.

March 24 th /25 th 2018 are the dates of worldwide marches/civil protests , in favour of reducing gun violence. They are being organised with survivors of the Parkdale, U.S. school massacre.  You can find your nearest protest site below, if it’s not there, you can organise a rally yourself through the official website, donate, or sign their petition. 

"The policy makers in this country must work together. And I don't care if you're a Republican or a Democrat. These are children's lives. That's the end of the line. And if you want to have mental health reform, you support that. If you want to have universal background checks, you support that. Why not do both? Politicians compromise and we can get this done. It just a matter of overcoming our political barriers in order to save children's lives, and in that way, our future too.” - David Hogg, school massacre survivor /student.

* Melbourne Australia (one of two):

On March 24, we will be rallying at the US Consulate General Offices - Melbourne, Australia - in solidarity with the kids and families of March For Our Lives who will be taking to the streets of Washington DC to demand that their lives and safety be made a priority and that we end gun violence and mass shootings in American schools. Rally with us in Melbourne so collective and global voices of the March For Our Lives movement will be heard. Calling all ex-pats, abroad students, and concerned allies alike.”
-Marchfor our lives, Melbourne organisers.

* Canberra, Australia:

* Sydney, Australia:

Join us as we show our support for and stand in solidarity with American students, families, and teachers in their courageous attempt to end senseless gun violence in America.” - Sydney organisers

* Brisbane, Australia:


* Brazil:

* Germany (one of them, there are more):

A stationary demonstration, initiated by AVA (American Voices Abroad) to support the students, their teachers and parents in the US in their efforts to introduce weapon regulations that will prevent any further horrific loss of lives.”  - AVA.

* France (one of them, there are more):

* Mumbai , India:

In wake of the most recent mass school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, the young people and families of Mumbai will join thousands of students in the U.S. taking to the streets to demand the end of the terrible epidemics of school shootings and gun violence!”
- March for our lives ( India.)

* England, (one of them, there are more):

* Ireland (one of them):

* Canada (one of them):

On March 24th, we will rally together in solidarity with the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas and the U.S.A., as neighbours and friends. We will demand that their lives and safety become a priority, and that gun violence and mass shootings come to an end through meaningful legislation. Stand with Us, and show the survivors that that they are not alone in this fight.” - march for our lives Canada organisers.

* Hong Kong:

On Sunday March 25, we will gather for a peaceful procession in solidarity with the March for Our Lives movement in Washington D.C. We walk in support of ending gun violence and mass shootings. Children deserve to live and learn in peace. Bring your family and friends and make your voice heard. You don't have to be American to walk with us. This event is open to peace-loving people of all nationalities. The route is stroller friendly, so don't be intimidated if you have little ones. Come and join us and let your voice be heard.” - March for our lives Hong Kong organisers.

* America has way too many to list, hundreds. It appears that nowhere is too far to travel to access a march on 24 th March, there. The sheer number of locations, shows this is a very popular cause. 
(Among my American friends and acquaintances,  people have widely differing views on gun control and how to reduce gun violence.)

I think there will be large counter protests too. If you go to the march, keep away from the opposition, and obey law enforcement.

* For all march locations
in those and other countries, go to

There seem to be none (officially) in predominantly Muslim countries, or nations of the  former Soviet state. Correct me if my eyes have got it wrong. None in Antarctica, they had theirs last week :

To support a walkout of schools in USA in April, petition link:

Starry Wisdom- 
“My generation of adults has failed to protect yours from gun violence. The least I can do is to support your efforts to protect yourselves!”
-Change. Org

Natalie Bushey-
“Guns are apart of our history from the start of our country. It helped us gain freedom. So because of this I think we should keep guns. I just want more restrictions on how you get them and to keep ones we don't necessarily need or are more threatening away from the people. 
I have 2 younger siblings. I don't think they should have to risk their safety for an education that our government has said is our right to. Our government even has made it a law that children must get an education. This leaves us with home schooling or going to a regular school. 
I also want to mention that public schools are government property. This mean that children are dying on government property. Yet all the government doesn't is sends it's condolences and say we need change. But where is it. 
I don't know everything about our government. But I also don't think I need to know all about to be able to recognize we need change.”
-Change. Org comment.

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

“THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO JUST TALK AND TALK “ Beatrice age 16, from Zambia

Anthony Van Dyck


 “But Jesus called the children to 

  him and said, ‘Let the children 

  come to me and do not stop them, 

  because the Kingdom of God 

  belongs to such as these. ‘ “


  - The Bible , Good News Translation

Kids are great because they cut to the chase, see right to the heart of things. Jesus told us to have childlike faith, for that reason. It’s adults that complicate things too much. Kids say it like it is. 

We have to listen to future generations NOW. The unborn, the little ones, the teens, they have righteous needs. They need a safe world free of violence, starvation, thirst, nakedness, sickness, disability, homelessness, pollution, discrimination, rejection, online bullying, exploitation, compulsory military service, and fear. 

* They have the right to go to school and not be mown down by semi-automatic guns. 

*They have the right to see the Great Barrier Reef and the Amazon still glowing with colour when they are retired, and travelling. 

*They have the right to not grow up living in doorways , cars and tents. 

*They have the right to attain their full height due to good nutrition, and to be safe playing in their town , from bombs and kidnappers. 

*They have the right to clean and sufficient water. 

* They have the right to medicine and surgery as needed.

*They have the right to be free, not locked up in immigration detention centres, to go to playgrounds and malls like other children. 

* They have a right to a good education, both boys and girls. 

*They have the right to practice the religion of their family without persecution. 

*They have the right to visit forests near their homes, to glimpse native animals and to hear the birds and insects. 

*They have the right to a job when they grow up. 

*They have the right to love and be loved.

They have the right to live to see the last nuclear , chemical and biological weapon in the world disarmed. 

“ They say no laws could have prevented the hundreds of senseless tragedies that have occurred. We call BS. That us kids don't know what we're talking about, that we're too young to understand how the government works. We call BS.” - Emma Gonzalez.


Acerules , age 16 says:


Youth today want a lot of things from the “grownups” of the world. The most important and most pressing is respect. Kids, teenagers even those newly deemed “Adults” feel as though their youth is being used against them. Just because, yes I am young and yes I may not be as experienced in the world does not mean that you should ignore what I have to say.

 That ties in with something that’s causing an increasing frustration with us, we want control of our own futures. We want to have a say in things that affect us. We don’t want people deciding things that they won’t even be here for, we want politicians to ask our opinion like they value it. Not just send reporters to a random city with questions most people only hear about on YouTube. 

 No, they should use those censuses they take , to make sure everyone under voting age has told them whether they agree with any particular issue or not. We want the voting age lowered to 16. We want a say in our own lives and the things that affect us. 


Thankyou, Acerules. 

One of the greatest speeches delivered in this century: