National Volunteer Week 2018

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One of the practices I learnt from my parents was the value of volunteering in the local community. They modeled  their belief in faith and neighbourhood in action and commitment.  My father was a life long member of the St Vincent de Paul Society in Geelong.  As well as a weekly meeting, Dad looked after the management of  Halstead Place, a hostel for rough sleepers. He also cared for the garden at our local parish Church and was a regular on the Meals on Wheels program.

My mother came from a family where commitment to school, church and community was ingrained as the way of living. As well as school Mothers Club and canteen rosters, Mum joined committees for the local parish and in later life, the management committee at her retirement village. As with many homemakers Mum also volunteered an amazing volume of cakes and goodies for fetes and fundraisers.  When our family were sorting out finances after Mum’s death we discovered her incredible generosity to causes and campaigns that worked for the common good.

I inherited much of this understanding and commitment to volunteering.  Some of my most treasured young memories are the days when my Dad would “dink me” on his bike to the hostel where he cooked and cared for rough sleepers.

On this National Volunteers Week I give thanks to those organisations that have provided me with opportunities to “Give a Little and Change a Lot”  The change has been in my outlook and understanding of the world and how we work together to build community.

At 65 years old I look back with gratitude to the groups and communities that provided volunteering experience and life long learning for me:

As well as groups and associations I have been able to volunteer my services as a photographer to friends and public events as a citizen journalist. This is a role where I am able to us m y images to  challenge social exclusion, prejudice and injustice.

As I begin a new era as a senior citizen I have taken up membership of advocacy groups for my generation.

My hope is to continue to volunteer for my community and causes that promote social change. I hope that through my volunteering at this stage of life I can mentor a new generation of awareness and commitment.

Supporting Palestine 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today and every day until #Nabka, May 15 I will wear my #Keffiyeh. This act is a statement of solidarity with the protests in Gaza and a condemnation of the Israeli Government and military for their abuse of human rights.

As an Australian I wear my Keffiyeh to protest the silence of our major political parties and our diplomatic failure to censure Israel for its violence against the Palestinian Community.

Just Dates: March

Just Dates February

Supporting Febfast 2018

Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

1-7 World Interfaith Harmony Week

2 World Wetlands Day

4 World Cancer Day

6 Waitangi Day Aotearoa New Zealand /  Safer Internet Day

12 Indigenous Freedom Ride Anniversary 1965  

12-18 Smart Eating Week

13 Stolen Generations Apology 2008 / World Radio Day

14 National Condom Day  / Ash Wednesday / Project Compassion

16 Chinese New Year [2018] [Year of the Earth Dog]

18 International Asperger’s Day

20 World Day of Social Justice / World Harmony Day

21  International Mother Language Day

Local Events in and Around Brisbane

Just Dates January

 

Reflections for the 12 Days of Christmas

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During the 2017 Christmas Season I have published my series of reflections originally posted in 2012 . I hope you enjoy them and invite your response. Come back each of the 12 Days to read a new post.

First Day of Christmas

Second Day of Christmas: St Stephen

Third Day of Christmas

Fourth Day of Christmas

Fifth Day of Christmas

Sixth Day of Christmas

Seventh Day of Christmas

Eighth Day of Christmas

Ninth Day of Christmas

Tenth Day of Christmas

Eleventh Day of Christmas

Twelfth Day of Christmas

 

 

Celebrating Our Faith In Same Sex Commitment

On the day that the Australian Parliament passed legislation allowing for same sex marriage it is worth remembering and celebrating the diversity of queer friendships that punctuate our religious history and heritage.

D1015D04-814F-4258-8962-2C14224CCCF8To honour this day I publish two of my fave icons of Saints Perpetua and Felicity next to Saints Sergius and Bacchus. These ancient martyrs have been revered and honoured for their witness to same sex affection, commitment and devotion.

My thanks to FB friend Paul Halsall who in 1997 published a comprehensive Calendar of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Saints

We who are people of faith celebrating our diverse sexuality can look back to a rich history of mentors and witnesses to the grace of love among our LGBTIQ ancestors.

On this historic day let us unite in prayerful thanks for this legislation and invite our Church to begin a new journey of affirmation of our love and commitment.