Friday, March 18, 2011

Colleagues List, March 19th, 2011

Vol. VI. No. 27

In this Issue

Special Item This Week -

Goals for Our Tour to Celtic Lands:

Thoughts on St. David's 50th Anniversary 
Pilgrimage to Special Sacred Places in 
Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England, 
April 26th - May 10th, 2011

Colleague Contributions:

Jim Taylor
Clint Mooney
Brian Rude
Ken Kuhl

Net Notes:

Disaster in Japan
Olive Patricia Dickason Dies
Canadian Baby Goes to St. Louis
Ontario Taxi Driver Goes to Court
Secular Power - in Swedish Schools
Korean Protestants End Association
Indonesian Muslims Support Christians
Time for Inspired Leadership and Action
Who Goes to Hell Not Most Important Issue

Global Faith Potpourri:

Seventeen ENI stories this week

Quotes of the Week:

Margaret Fuller
Louisa May Alcott
Cesar Chavez
Dorothy Day
Daniel Berrigan

On This Day: (March 16th - March 18th)

March 16, 1968 - My Lai Massacre by US Troops 
March 17, 1942 - MacArthur Commands Pacific Allies
March 18, 1965 - First spacewalk by Soviet Cosmonaut 

Closing Thought - A Little Wisdom for Today



Dear Friends:

With five weeks to go before departure, I
have begun a reflection process on why I
think we should be engaged in "spiritual
travel." I wanted to share this with you.

My thoughts are entitled:

"Goals for the Tour to Celtic Lands"

Thoughts on St. David's 50th Anniversary 
Pilgrimage to Special Sacred Places in 
Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England, 
April 26th - May 10th, 2011

Colleague Contributions:

This week, Jim Taylor (writer, Okanagan, BC)
Clint Mooney (minister, Calgary, AB) Brian Rude
(missionary, El Salvador) and Ken Kuhl (social
worker, London, ON) send their thoughts and
discoveries for your edification.


Net Notes:

"Disaster in Japan" - a series of sources and
stories, most with a religious aspect to them,
are provided to add to your understanding
(ENI, Ucan News, CBC)

"Olive Patricia Dickason Dies" - a mentor of
mine, a former professor at the University of
Alberta, Olive Dickason was a trend-setter in
many ways - particularly in Native Studies
(Toronto Star)

"Canadian Baby Goes to St. Louis" - thanks 
to Canadian priests, a baby on a ventilator -
who might otherwise have died - is getting a
second chance at a US hospital. Great!
(Lifesite News)

"Montreal Taxi Driver Goes to Court" - a
taxi driver was fined for having religious 
symbols in his "public vehicle" but he is 
fighting the case in a Quebec court

"Secular Power - in Swedish Schools" -
Sweden is one of Europe's - and the world's -
most secularized countries. Here is a story
that anticipates similar developments elsewhere
- Canada, for instance (Sightings)

"Korean Protestants End Association" - from
a country with a lot of new, enthusiastic
Christians - comes the story of a scandal
(Ucan News)

"Indonesian Muslims Support Christians" -
people in the West who think that Muslims
are always "the enemy" should think again
(Ucan News)

"Time for Inspired Leadership and Action" -
an election in Canada seems imminent and
we citizens need to think beyond politics
(Citizens for Public Justice)

"Who Goes to Hell Not Most Important Issue" -
last week we brought you comments on a new book 
by an emergent church pastor who questions the 
existence of hell. Martin Marty tipped us off!
Now, some other feedback to this story.
(The Christian Century)


Global Faith Potpourri:

Seventeen ENI stories are presented this week.


Quotes of the Week:

Provided courtesy of

Margaret Fuller, Louisa May Alcott, Cesar Chavez,
Dorothy Day, and Daniel Berrigan offer thoughts.


On This Day: (March 16th - March 18th)

Provided courtesy of the archives
of the New York Times:

My Lai Massacre by US Troops (1968) 
MacArthur Commands Pacific Allies (1942)
First spacewalk by Soviet Cosmonaut (1965)

Read these stories as they actually unfolded.

Closing Thought - a little wisdom as we end.

Blessings on your Lenten pilgrimage this year.




Contact us at: (or)
St. David's Web Address -

Listen to audio recordings of Sunday services -



Created and maintained by Colleague
Jock McTavish



Books Considered:

"An Altar in the World"
 by Barbara Brown Taylor


"I Shall Not Hate -
 A Gaza Doctor's Journey"
 by Izzeldin Abuelaish

More study and website particulars will
be posted as they become available.

Classes are well underway!

Here is the link to the session design:

Here is a TV Ontario Interview with 
Dr. Abuelaish provided by




We continue our investigation of the
New Atheists and consider the question:
"Can we be good without God?"

Text for the course will be Sam Harris'
new book:

"The Moral Landscape:
 How Science Can Determine Human Values"
 (Free Press, October, 2010)

Supplementary text:

"Godless Morality" by Richard Holloway
 (Canongate (new edition) 2009)

Course description and registration

Classes going well. A great group
representing a gamut of believers
through atheists. I hope to learn
much from them and will post insights
as they emerge.


A Joint Project of the Multi-Faith
Chaplains and St. David's ACTS Ministry

This Year's Subject:

"Community and Growth" by Jean Vanier.

The book first appeared in 1989 and
continues to be widely read.

Learn from Vanier's years of experience
in L'Arche communities around the world.

This book will be of interest to those
who seek insights for living and
working together in a pluralistic
society such as our own.

This study is for university faculty,
staff and interested students. It runs
for six weeks.

Time: Thursdays, 12 noon to 1:00PM
      March 3rd through April 7th, 2011

Cost: Free. Copies of the book available
      for purchase, courtesy of the
      Christian Reformed Chaplaincy
      and thanks to Paul Verhoef

Location: Small Board Room, Native Centre,
          McEwan Student Centre.

Vanier book study link:




We plan a 15-day tour of special Celtic sites
in Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England -
April 26th - May 10th, 2011.

A highlight of the tour will be a visit to
St. David's Cathedral, Pembrokeshire. Choir
members from our group will sing at various
informal cathedral events through the day
and at Evening Prayers on Saturday, May 7th!

We have 25 choristers signed up as part of
the tour group. This special choir began
rehearsals in late January - led by our
congregation's music director, Brent Tucker.

Details have been finalized with St. David's 
Cathedral dean, Fr. Jonathan Lean. We are
being warmly welcomed! 

We are also planning to sing while visiting
other locations on our tour. More details
to follow.


January 26th was the deadline for all
trip payments - 90 days before departure.

We have started an interest list for other,
future tours!

Let me know if you are interested in learning
more about exciting, spiritual tourism! This
is a cutting edge ministry at St. David's.
We hope to do many more of these tours in future!

Take a look at the St. David's, Wales Sacred Site:



A collection of twenty-five+ studies conducted
since 2000 can quickly be found at:

This collection of study resources represents
a decade of Monday Night Studies at St. David's,
plus extra courses too!

You are welcome to use our course outlines,
class notes and resource pages in your personal
and group reflections.



Thoughts on the St. David's, Calgary 
50th Anniversary Pilgrimage to Sacred Places 
in Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England
April 26th - May 10th, 2011

With about five weeks to go before departure
for the United Kingdom and Ireland, I would 
like to share some of the goals and dreams
I have for this unique tour. 36 members and
friends of St. David's United Church Calgary
will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the
congregation's founding with a pilgrimage to
sacred places in the 'old countries.'

Marlene and I are hosts for this trip, which was
arranged by Rostad Tours of Calgary. Lutheran
pastor Ed Rostad - still living and in his 80's -
founded the company bearing his name 30 years
ago. Many members of his family continue to be
part of this travel agency and we have found
them to be most helpful and efficient partners.

They have a lot of experience with people who
are interested in 'spiritual travel' but we
are adding some special aspects to this trip
as well. 

We have given our tour group the opportunity 
to focus on Celtic spirituality during fall and 
winter study sessions and many have taken advantage 
of this extra benefit.

We will be visiting key Celtic centres like 
Lindisfarne, Iona, Armagh/Downpatrick, Dublin and 
Wales. We will spend a full day as guests of the 
dean and people of St. David's Cathedral - the 
church after which the Calgary congregation was 

We will spend time at New Grange/Knowth (Ireland)
and Stonehenge (England) - World Heritage Sites
that predate the Celts. New Lanark and Sterling 
(Scotland), Tintern Abbey (Wales) and Bath 
(England) will also be visited. We will be
busy but we hope to have times for rest and
reflection as well.

Teaching colleague Jock McTavish and I have
created an added set of "spiritual reflection
pages" to the basic tour book of sites visited
that Rostad creates. Start and end-of-trip time
for private devotional writing will be provided,
as well as special meditations for six special
locations along the way. We encourage our 
fellow-travelers to bring favourite poetry 
and other writings with them to share at
memorable locations.

A group of 24 persons from the tour have
formed a chorister group and they have been
busy rehearsing Celtic and Canadian hymns
as well as other selections to present at
formal and informal venues along the way.
We look forward to contribute to Evening 
Prayer at St. David's Cathedral, as well 
as at other venues along the way. 

36 persons have registered and paid their fare 
for this tour. We will be provided with good
accommodation and travel support, as well as
local guides while en route. Our tasks as hosts
are to represent our fellow-travelers and
Rostad Tours while overseas and to do what we
can to help people enjoy themselves.


As part of our preparation for this trip, I have 
developed and elaborated on five goals which may
guide our experience. These goals are open-ended.


To do everything possible to make this a most
memorable experience for all participants. 

Those on tour have already invested much of
themselves in preparation. We want to make
sure to do all that is humanly possible to
assure everyone an unforgettable travel 
experience they can look back upon with much


To make the best use of the time, spiritual/ 
physical energy and financial outlay that 
we will be investing in this pilgrimage.

Participants have known from the beginning
that this will be a 'busy' adventure - not
focused on taking in things slowly. That
being said, we want people to feel that they
have been able to concentrate on good things. 
In some respects, the trip will whet people's
appetite to 'go deeper' and 'experience more' on 
subsequent travels they may wish to undertake.


To help everyone connect with the universal,
spiritual meanings of the places visited.

Some will find direct connections because of
ties due to ancestry and place. Others may 
find a lot of this new. All can come into 
contact with meanings they might not have 
otherwise thought possible. We are visiting 
particular settings, but what these places 
represent hold timeless and universal value - 
no matter what one's heritage might be.


To encourage and enable everyone to have fun!

While there are serious aspects to this trip
there is also an opportunity for those involved
to get to know and enjoy each other's company
in ways that are not possible in congregational
life. A benefit of this trip is that most of
the participants know each other previously.
We hope that those who are less familiar with
the group will discover many new friends along 
the way. Travel on a bus can be disconcerting. 
It can also be very satisfying. Much benefit 
can be derived from individual contributions 
to our "Celtic Tour Community" - before, during
and following the trip itself.


To invest in the idea that ongoing spiritual 
travel can be a most meaningful and satisfying 
growth experience for everyone.

Depending on what we learn this time, it may
be possible to offer other tours to the same
regions - and also to many other 'spiritual
locations' - on the continent and around the
world. Christians need to learn about their
history because it can enrich their faith.
They can also learn from other people of
faith. The world is full of places where we
can gain a rich exposure to ever-expanding
cultural experiences. In our rapidly changing
globe, to become more aware of human diversity 
and similarity is no longer a luxury. It is 
becoming a necessity.


Written to begin a reflection process -

Wayne Holst, March 18th, 2011



Okanagan, BC

Earthquakes -
Connected, Like It or Not
March 14th, 2011


Calgary, AB

March 11th, 2011

Hi Wayne,

Could you advertise this event for us? 
The event is on Climate Change. 
It happens Saturday, March 19.

Any help you could give would be welcome.
Thanks. Blessings,


"Stories of Climate Change:
 Shaping our Future"

To Register visit or
contact (403) 243-5478 or e-mail

Registration is $25 and includes lunch

Our Lady of Grace Parish
Main Hall
1714 14 Ave NE
Calgary, Alberta
(403) 276-1689

March 19, 2011 8:30-3:00

About Kairos:

Kairos unites eleven churches and
church agencies in faithful action for
justice and peace. Kairos is a web of
people and partnerships dedicated to a
faithful and decisive response to God’s
call for compassionate justice.

Kairos Members include the Anglican
Church of Canada, Christian Reformed
Church in North America, The Evangelical
Lutheran Church in Canada, The
Presbyterian Church in Canada, The
United Church of Canada, Religious Society
of Friends (Quakers), Canadian
Catholic Organization for Development
and Peace, Canadian Conference of
Catholic Bishops, Canadian Religious
Conference, Mennonite Central Committee
of Canada, and The Primates World
Relief and Development Fund.


El Salvador

Dear friends of El Salvador and San Romero:

May God bless our Lenten time in the desert, 
accompanied by Jesus, Romero and all the 
saints.I welcome you to meditate on Romero's 
homily for Lent I, Feb 24, 1980, one month 
before his martyrdom:

Here is the website for all Romero's homilies:

Brian Rude.
Pastor and missionary of the 
Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, 
still being inspired in the land of Romero, 
and by the people of Romero


London, ON.

Has Gay-Rights Christianity
Become Self-Righteous Subculture?

The Guardian, UK




Ecumenical News International
14 March 2001

Religious groups mobilize to aid Japan

Washington, D.C.(ENI news) - As the extent of the 
death and destruction from the massive disaster 
in Japan comes into focus, religious relief 
organizations are sending and supporting teams 
to assess the damage. Groups such World Vision 
and Baptist World Aid have teams on the ground 
determining what kinds of experts and supplies 
will be needed in the recovery from the 
earthquake and tsunami that struck 11 March, 
Religion News Service reports. 


14 March, 2011

A Priest Dead, a Chapel 'Drowned'


15th, March 2011

Japanese Look to Ancient Traditions
to Gain Strength Through Crisis


16 March 2011

Japanese churches respond to 
earthquake-tsunami disaster

Tokyo (ENI news) - Churches across Japan are 
responding with prayers, donations, and relief 
operations to the impacts of the 11 March 
earthquake and its subsequent tsunamis and 
nuclear power plant accidents.

As of 16 March, more than 3,700 people were 
confirmed dead, more than 7,800 missing, and 
about 2,000 injured, according to the National 
Police Agency. More than 400,000 people have 
been evacuated from the disaster zones in 
northeastern Japan. The earthquake also damaged
the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, where 
workers have been struggling to contain radiation 


17th March 2011

Japan relief efforts encounter 
difficult environment

New York (ENI news) - Ecumenical relief efforts 
intensified on 17 March in Japan, where the death 
toll from the 11 March 9.0-magnitude (recently 
raised from an estimated 8.9) earthquake and 
tsunami rose to more than 5,600, according to 
the National Police Agency of Japan. 


Other News Sources:

Asia Steps Up Response to Japan Quake

Ucan News
March 14th, 2011


Other Asians Know Japan's 'Tsunami Pain'

Ucan News
March 18th, 2011


Calgary Students Raise Money
for Fellows in Japan

CBC News
Mar. 14th, 2011


Author Chronicled Native Contribution

Toronto Star
March 12th, 2011


Priests Support Infant on Ventilator

Lifesite News
March 24th, 2011


Montreal Man Wants to Protect
Religious Symbols in His Car
March 11th, 2011



Sightings  3/17/2011
by Joseph Ballan 


Vote-Buying Scandal the Cause

March 17th, 2011


Government Slow to Protect Worship Sites

Ucan News
March 14th, 2011


"Don't Overstate a Good Case"
Our Criticism Can Make Things Worse
for Many Islamic Countries

Tablet (UK) Editorial
March 19th, 2011


Interfaith Group Meets in Ottawa in 
Anticipation of a Canadian Election

Citizens for Public Justice
March 10th, 2011


Oda Apologizes for 'Confusion'
More on the Kairos Funding Fiasco

Anglican Journal News
March 18th, 2011


(by Kiran Thadhani, Sojourners)

The Christian Century
Reproduced from Sojourners
March 16th, 2011



Ecumenical News International
News Highlights
14th March, 2011

Interfaith water project launched in Kenya

Mombasa, Kenya (ENI news) - Religious leaders 
from Africa inaugurated an interfaith-
sponsored water project here on 12 March, 
with women singing, dancing and ululating 
to welcome it.

"This water should be source of unity for 
you. The project is yours. It is a symbol of 
your unity and development. You should refuse 
to be divided in religious lines because of 
this water," the Rev. Ishmael Noko, President 
of the Interfaith Action for Peace in Africa 
(IFAPA) told the launch of the Mbegani Water 
Project in the Mazumalume village. 

Under new "ordinariate," Anglicans take steps 
to become Roman Catholic

London (ENI news) - More than 900 adults formally 
expressed a desire to join the Roman Catholic 
Church at two special services held at Westminster 
Cathedral 12-13 March – including the first 
Anglicans to take advantage of a new structure 
designed to receive those leaving the Church of 
England for Rome. 


15 March 2011

U.S. Lenten campaign seeks to 
bolster dialogue about poverty

New York (ENI news) - U.S. anti-poverty advocates 
have launched a 40-day Lenten campaign to put the 
issue of global poverty into sharper focus. The 
campaign, organized by Yale Divinity School under 
the banner "Mobilizing Faith, Fighting Poverty," 
is intended to bolster public dialogue about 
poverty and ways to fight it. 


16 March, 2011

International Ecumenical Peace Convocation 
launched in Jamaica

Kingston, Jamaica (ENI news) - Jamaican church 
leaders and guests gathered on 15 March to call 
attention to the upcoming International 
Ecumenical Peace Convocation, which will take 
place from 17 to 25 May at the University of 
the West Indies in Kingston and will highlight 
the successes and challenges of work to 
overcome violence. 

Anglican priest arrested on marriage charges

London (ENI news) - A Church of England vicar 
has been arrested in Britain's second major 
police investigation in as many years into 
bogus marriages staged to help immigrants win 
residents' visas. The church immediately 
suspended the Rev. Canon Patrick Magumba 
amid claims he was involved in scores of 
sham weddings at three churches in northeast 
England, Religion News Service reports.


17th March, 2011

Average Norwegian goes to church once a year, 
statistics show

Oslo, Norway (ENI news) - The average Church of 
Norway member went to church once a year in 2010, 
Statistics Norway reported on 15 March in the 
annual statistical report it sends to the church. 
Although church attendance has remained the same 
since 2000, other indicators show dwindling 
participation in the Lutheran state church in 
the past decade.


Churches urge NATO to remove all nuclear 
weapons from Europe

New York (ENI news) - Ecumenical organizations on 
both sides of the Atlantic are urging NATO to 
remove all U.S. nuclear weapons still based in 
Europe and end their role in the alliance's policy. 


Pakistan's Bhatti remembered at 
London memorial service

London (ENI news) - Pakistani Christian leader 
Shahbaz Bhatti was remembered as a fearless 
champion of religious minorities at a memorial 
service on 17 March that was attended by 
Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, 
Bishop of Lahore Alexander Malik and former 
Bishop of Peshawar Mano Rumalshah. 

Russian patriarch and Catholic cardinal 

meet in Moscow 

Moscow (ENI news) - A meeting between the 
Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church and 
the Pope is "not yet on the agenda," Cardinal 
Kurt Koch, President of the Pontifical Council 
on Promoting Christian Unity, told a Russian 
news agency after his first visit to Moscow, 
but the two churches can multiply the impact 
of their witness by promoting jointly their 
moral and ethical values to the secular world. 


18 March 2011

Japanese churches continue searching 
for disaster victims

Tokyo (ENI news) - Churches are among those who 
keep searching for missing people, including 
clergy, members and their families, as the 
death toll after the 9.0-magnitude earthquake 
and tsunami has reached the highest in the 
history of natural disasters in postwar Japan.

Declining ratio of women in India a challenge, 
church leader says

Bangalore, India (ENI news) - Responding to a recent 
prediction that gender prejudice and sex-selective 
abortion in India will result in 20 percent more men 
than women by 2030, a prominent church woman leader 
says the church should address these issues. 

Obama taps U.S. campuses
for interfaith service projects

Washington, D.C. (ENI news) - The White House
is hoping to recruit America's college and
seminary students in a nationwide interfaith
service campaign that was launched on 17
March. In the next month, the Obama
administration will solicit plans submitted
by colleges, universities, seminaries and
rabbinical schools for year-long community
service projects such as food drives,
house building or mentoring, Religion
News Service reports.



Provided courtesy of

March 14th, 2011

"If you have knowledge, let others light
their candles in it."

- Margaret Fuller


March 15th, 2011

"Far away there in the sunshine are my highest
aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can
look up and see their beauty, believe in them,
and try to follow where they lead."

- Louisa May Alcott


March 16th, 2011

"When you sacrifice, you force others to sacrifice.
 It's an extremely powerful weapon."

- Cesar Chavez


March 17th, 2011

"What we do is so little that we may seem to be
constantly failing. But so did [Christ] fail.
He met with apparent failure on the Cross.
But unless the seeds fall into the earth and
die, there is no harvest."

- Dorothy Day


March 18th, 2011

"We have longed to taste the resurrection.
We have longed to welcome its thunders and
quakes, and to echo its great gifts. We want
to test the resurrection in our bones. We want
to see if we might live in hope instead of in
the ... twilight thicket of cultural despair,
in which standing implies many are lost."

- Daniel Berrigan



Provided courtesy of the archives
of the New York Times:

March 16, 1968 - during the Vietnam War, the
My Lai Massacre was carried out by United States
troops under the command of Lt. William L.
Calley Jr.


March 17, 1942 - Gen. Douglas MacArthur arrived
in Australia to become supreme commander of Allied
forces in the southwest Pacific theater during
World War II.


March 18, 1965 - the first spacewalk took place
as Soviet cosmonaut Aleksei Leonov left his
Voskhod 2 capsule and remained outside the
spacecraft for 20 minutes, secured by a tether.



"Blessed are you when you have small stumbles.
 Handled well, they can prevent big falls."



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