Saturday, October 11, 2014

Colleagues List, October 12th, 2014

Vol. X.  No. 10




Wayne A. Holst, Editor
My E-Mail Address:

Colleagues List Web Site:

"Quicklinks" are included with many items
at the beginning of this issue. To get a more
complete picture, however, scroll down to
find your special selection in the body of
the blog. 

Note that not all items here have links.


Dear Friends:

As we in Canada celebrate our annual
Thanksgiving I would like to share some
"Personal Thanksgiving Thoughts" with
you. I hope you find them helpful.

Please scroll down to read my reflection


Colleague Contributions - this week are

Marjorie Gibson (Vancouver)
who writes about "Porridge"

Lorna Dueck (Toronto) who considers
"Does Canada Have a Compassion Problem?"

Martin Marty (Chicago) who discusses
the new movie "Left Behind"

Jim Taylor (Okanagan) who reflects on
"Credit Cards"

Ron Rolheiser (San Antonio) who offers
views on "Sacred Permission to be Human"

Doug Shantz  (Calgary) who announces the
annual Craigie Memorial Lecture, this year
presented by colleague John Stackhouse -

"Putting God in His Place: Does Theology
  Belong at the University?"


Net Notes - are as follows:

"Autumn" - a colourful, seasonal poem
  (America Magazine)

"How Not to Understand ISIS" - insightful
 pieces on how not to assess the Islamic State
 and on understanding its intentions
 (Sightings, America Magazine)

"Roman Synod Shows Potential" - as the
 Catholic bishop's synod meets in Rome
 to consider family and sexuality issues,
 here are some helpful articles to consider
 (National Catholic Reporter, New York Times)

"Interview with Marilynne Robinson" -
  a new book by the writer/theologian
  who launched her career with "Gilead"
  has been well received by critics
  (NYTimes Magazine and Book Review)

"China Imposes New Tibet Restrictions" -
  Harsher rules are imposed on the
  mountainous nation by China
  (Radio Free Asia)

"Ballet Presents Residential School Story" -
  an exceptional reception for an artistic
  presentation by the Royal Winnipeg Ballet
  (Anglican Journal)

"Health Effects of Leaving One's Religion" -
  a Mormon student at Brigham Young U.
  is ostracised for his views (Atlantic Online)
"Amish Re-inventing Organic Agriculture" -
  North America's original euro-ecologists
  continue  to show the way in farming
  practices (Atlantic Online)

"Russia Persecutes Ukraine Christians, Muslims"
- reports of religious persecution in regions of
  the Ukraine dominated by Russian sympathisers
  (The National Post)

"Singapore Megachurch Pastor's Abuse Charges"
- a court case in Singapore reveals how a pastor
  used large amounts of church money to boost
  his wife's career (UCA News/Christian Post)


Wisdom of the Week - is provided courtesy of
Sojourners and Bruderhof online:

Oscar Romero, T.S. Eliot, Plato, Maya Angelou,
Mohandas K. Gandhi, Albert Einstein and
M. Scott Peck

- please scroll down to read these insights


On This Day - comes from the archives of
the New York Times, reports as history

"Sudetenland Compromise - Allies With Hitler"

"Solidarity Union Banned in Poland"

"Palestinian Gunmen Hijack Cruise Ship"

"Egyptian President Sadat Assassinated"

"Soviets Launch Sputnik; Space Age Begins"

"East and West Germany Re-united after 45 Years"
Closing Thought - Anne Lamott

To read her thought, please scroll down


Fall 2014 Adult Spiritual Development
ACTS Ministry Programs at St. David's
and at the University of Calgary




In the September 8th issue of the New York
Times book section a new cancer study was
introduced to a crowded field of quality titles.

Longtime researchers Paul A. Marks and James
Sterngold write "One Man, One Disease, and a
Medical Revolution." 

No one is against curing cancer, they write,
but the notion of finding a cure, while very
appealing, can be misleading.

Cancer is a complex, messy and fascinating
reality whose "cure" can't be easily fit on to
a bumper sticker.

Marks says cancer is an "existential illness"
that we lump under a single name and that
arises from the basic mechanics of life.

"As long as cell division is the means by which
we propagate and survive as a species," he
writes, "cancers will develop."

The book describes how we have advanced
in the war against cancer during the past
decades, but that every advance reveals the
reality that cancer may never ultimately be
a "curable" disease. It may be something we
will always have to live with in one way or
another. We must hope that research will
help us destroy, or at least control, as much
cancer as is possible.

It is with this perspective in mind that I write
my "thanksgiving reflection" this year.


I rearticulate my gratitude for the great
advance I personally have made during
the past five years in my fight against
colon cancer. But that advance is mixed
with what I would call "cautious hope."

I continue to keep vigilant, and I must
never succumb to a sense of entitlement.
In other words, I am living in a state of
grace as far as cancer in me is concerned.

In the next few months I will reach a
magic marker. It will be five years since
my colon cancer was first detected (January
of 2010.) I had already been carrying the
disease for some time, unknowingly.

During the past five years, my surgeon - 
Dr. Donald Buie, a teacher and practitioner
at the University of Calgary School of
Medicine and the Foothills Medical Centre - 
has always had encouraging news for me
about a cancer-free condition, and now the
golden moment is just around the corner.
I will hopefully be declared medically cured
of colon cancer. 
But there is something more to say.

I once asked him if, after five years, I
was declared surgically cured, would
that mean I would always be free from
the disease? "No," he replied, "it would
only mean that you are again back with
the rest of us." I find this to be wise.

This month, as a result of continuing
tests to determine my state of cancer
health, I am going to have some growths
removed from my bladder. These are
like the polyps that appeared in my
colon - only considerably less advanced
than the latter when we first discovered
them. They can be easily removed and
I will be an out-patient.

I am not overly concerned about this,
but it is a reminder of what my doctor
told me. CT Scans and other tests and
aids to health will be part of my lifestyle,

My challenge will be to keep alert to
all negative possibilities, while I
continue to celebrate the cancer-
freedom I am currently enjoying.

In that spirit I rejoice at yet another
Thanksgiving! But here is another
point to consider.


Several weeks ago an article appeared
in The Atlantic Online, written by
Ezekiel J. Emanuel, head of medical
ethics and health policy at the University
of Pennsylvania. His article is entitled:
"Why I Hope to Die at 75" and you may
want to read it -

Emanuel offers some pretty good reasons
for why, by that age, he thinks (from the
vantage point of his fifties) that he will
have lived his life and that it would likely
be best if he could die at that point. He
does not speak of euthanasia, and he does
suggest that death at 75 is his current hope.
He is open to changing his mind.

At age 72, I beg to differ with him. I return
to the point made above about grace. I really
don't think that my dying - whether soon or
late - is something that is up to me. In
the meantime, I am doing all I can with
exercise, proper diet and medication to
prolong that final hour for as long as possible.

My father died at 79. My mother at 93. I just
might be able to live for several more decades
if my family physician is right! I have already
lived beyond the "threescore and ten" limits
my father would refer to as he too outlived
that deadline.

Marlene and I are enjoying good years right
now. We work at jobs we enjoy for the sake
of satisfaction. The income, while helpful,
is not the ultimate reason for continuing.
We invest what we can in travel, and a
surprizing number of cultural events, near
home in Canada, and even beyond.

We are indeed part of a privileged generation
of Canadians who have worked hard in our
younger years and our family encourages us.
They are doing well and don't expect handouts.

While we don't claim to "deserve" these
opportunities, we are certainly going to
make the most of them for as long as we

We've seen enough of the world beyond
Canada to know we are indeed blessed.
We do some things to help some others
to enjoy what we do.

We will never assume that what we have
we deserve as a right. That's why, like I
said above about my cancer, we continue
to live in a state of vigilance, as well as

A Blessed Canadian Thanksgiving greeting
to all of you, Canadian or other!



Vancouver, BC

Marjorie Remembers - Blog
Oct. 9th, 2014



Toronto, ON

Globe and Mail
October 6th, 2014

"Does Canada Have a Compassion Problem?"


Chicago, IL

Oct. 6th, 2014

"Left Behind"


Okanagan, BC
Personal Web Log
October 8th, 2014

"Credit Cards"


San Antonio, TX

Personal Web Site
October 6th, 2014

"Sacred Permission to be Human"


Calgary, AB

Chair of Christian Thought
University of Calgary

2014 Peter Craigie Memorial Lecturer
Dr. John Stackhouse Jr.

Thurs. Oct. 30th, 2014

"Putting God in His Place:
  Does Theology Belong at the University?"




America Magazine
October 20th, 2014



October 2nd, 2014

Confronting the Caliphate

America Magazine
October 13th, 2014


Important Family Issues on Agenda

National Catholic Reporter
October 7th, 2014

Francis Calls for Candor in Discussions
on Divorce, Nature of Family Issues

New York Times
October 7th, 2014


Writer/Theologian Talks About New Book

New York Times Magazine
October 1st 2014

"Lila" by Marilynne Robinson

New York Times Review of Books 
October 3rd, 2014


Harsh Regs Added to Already Hard System

Radio Free Asia
Oct. 7th, 2014


Big Response to Royal Winnipeg Ballet Production

Anglican Journal
October 8th, 2014


Student Forced Out of Brigham Young U.

The Atlantic Online
September 28th, 2014



The Atlantic Online
October 6th, 2014


Canadian Religious Freedom
Ambassador Speaks Out

National Post
October 5th, 2014


Money Used to Support Wife's Career
Christian Post/UCA News
Sept. 28th, 2014



Provided by Sojourners
and Bruderhof online:

No one can serve two lords. There is
only one God, and that God will either
be the true one, who asks us to give
things up when they become sin, or it
will be the god of money, who makes
us turn our back on Christianity’s God.
The spiritual life does not remove us
from the world, but leads us deeper
into it.

- Oscar Romero


This is the way the world ends,
not with a bang but a whimper.

- T.S. Eliot


Justice in the life and conduct of the
State is possible only as first it resides
in the hearts and souls of the citizens. 

- Plato


While I know myself as a creation of God,
I am also obligated to realize and remember
that everyone else and everything else are
also God's creation.

- Maya Angelou


It is better to allow our lives to speak for us
than our words. God did not bear the cross
only two thousand years ago. He bears it
today, and he dies and is resurrected from
day to day. It would be a poor comfort to
the world if it had to depend on a historical
God who died two thousand years ago.

Do not, then, preach the God of history,
but show him as he lives today through you...

Mohandas K. Gandhi


In matters of truth and justice, there is
no difference between large and small
problems, for issues concerning the
treatment of people are all the same.

- Albert Einstein


Community requires the confession
of brokenness. But how remarkable
it is that in our culture brokenness
must be “confessed.” We think of
confession as an act that should be
carried out in secret, in the darkness
of the confessional, with the guarantee
of professional priestly or psychiatric
confidentiality. Yet the reality is that
every human being is broken and
vulnerable. How strange that we
should ordinarily feel compelled to
hide our wounds when we are all
wounded! Community requires the
ability to expose our wounds and
weaknesses to our fellow creatures.
It also requires the ability to be
affected by the wounds of others.
But even more important is the love
that arises among us when we share,
both ways, our woundedness. With
remorse, confession becomes a joy.

- M. Scott Peck



Provided from the Archives of
the New York Times:

"Sudetenland Compromise - Allies With Hitler"

"Solidarity Union Banned in Poland"

"Palestinian Gunmen Hijack Cruise Ship"

"Egyptian President Sadat Assassinated"

"Soviets Launch Sputnik; Space Age Begins"

"East and West Germany Re-united after 45 Years"



But grace can be the experience of
a second wind, when even though
what you want is clarity and resolution,
what you get is stamina and poignancy
and the strength to hang on.

Scroll down please



Fall 2014 Adult Spiritual Development
ACTS Ministry Programs at St. David's
and at the University of Calgary:

September 15th - November 24th
7-00-9:00PM TM Room
(Thanksgiving Day exempted)

"A Fair Country" by John Ralston Saul

"Medicine Walk" by  Richard Wagamese

Led by Jock McTavish and Wayne Holst

Link to study:


December 1st
7:00-9:15PM TM Room
Sponsored by the Bible Study Group

"From Jesus to Christ" -
  How Jesus Became God
  A PBS Video Series  - Part Two
  (total of two hours in length)

Hospitality and discussion

Led by Jock McTavish and Wayne Holst

All welcome. Hospitality donation only


(Twelve Weeks)

September 18th - December 4th
10:00-11:00AM TM Room

"From Jesus to Christ III -
  A Study of the Book of Acts"

Led by Wayne Holst
No charge.

Study resource -
The DK Complete Bible Handbook



Interfaith Chaplains' Book Studies
For faculty, students, staff, campus guests -

Fall 2014

Native Centre Board Room
McEwan Student Centre

Fridays, 12:00 - 1:00 PM

Oct 17, 24, 31, Nov 7, 14, 21
(six sessions)

"Everything Belongs:
 The Gift of Contemplative Prayer"
  by Richard Rohr.

Participants are encouraged to attend
all six sessions. However, you may attend
one or more sessions on a drop-in basis.

Book cost $15.00


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