Thursday, July 23, 2015

Colleagues List, July 26th, 2015

Vol. XI.  No. 2



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.


Dear Friends:

We, in the northern climes, are fully
enjoying the all-too-brief summers we
are allotted. I hope this is a good time
of year for all readers, wherever your
global location!

My Special Item for this issue is my
Anglican Journal column for July --

"What I Learned from Fr. RenĂ© Fumoleau"

I think of the weeks I spent with him in
July of 1988 as we learned about the Dene
First Nations of the Mackenzie (Deh Cho)
region of northern Canada. His insights were
memorable and life-changing. I want to share
some of his ideas with you my readers.


Colleague Comment - two longer items
appear in this issue from faithful friends
and readers of Colleagues List.

The first is from John Griffith, who was a
pastor of mine when I first attended
St. David's United, twenty-five years ago.
He introduces us to two current books he
is reading, and I provide links for you.

Do you have books to suggest as well?
Please let me know.

Scroll down to read what John has to say.

Thanks John!


Mathew Zachariah, friend from the University
of Calgary for more than twenty years, writes
poignantly about a recent kidney transplant
he had. Mathew has written for Colleagues
List several times, and I have promoted his

Thanks Mathew!

Please scroll down to read his essay on
miracles of modern medical science and the
value of a supportive family and local faith
community. I know what he is talking about!


Colleague Contributions -

Herbert O'Driscoll (Victoria) shares another
article he has found very helpful from an
issue of the New York Times (April, 2015)

"When Cultures Shift"


Martin Marty (Chicago) has written an
interesting piece on Francis' recent
papal green letter -



Jim Taylor (Okanagan) has two reflections
to share with us this week:

"Friendships"  (and)

"An Open Letter to an Atheist"


Ron Rolheiser (San Antonio) contributes
two spiritual articles from his website:

"The Healing Place of Silence" (and)
"Healing, - A Theory"

My thanks to all four of you!


Net Notes - these items caught my eye
from hundreds I perused on the www:

"Called to Account" - Peter Marty writes
about an important aspect of ministry
in a local congregation - accountability
(The Christian Century)

"Can God Surprize Us?" - an Irish bishop
writes insightfully in the wake of the
recent vote to approve gay marriage
(National Catholic Reporter)

"After the Massacre in Kenya" - a first
hand account of the recent atrocity at
a Kenyan school of higher education
(Faith Today/Evangelical Fellowship of

"5 Tips for Spotting Fake News" - many
of us are sitting ducks for false news on
the internet. Here are helpful protective
hints (Christianity Today)

"Obama's Leap of Faith on Iran" - these
days, President Obama amazes with a
plethora of momentous breakthroughs
(New York Times)

"What Will Revitalize the Mainline?" -
a thoughtful piece on an important
theme that quite a few have tackled
(Alban Weekly)

"Qur'an Fragments Found in Britain" -
a discovery of significance, not in
the Mid-East, but the UK
(New York Times)

"The Fellowship of Tolkien and Lewis" -
a verbal report on the creative relationship
between two Oxford dons that changed
the course of English literature
(America Magazine)

"ELCIC Permits Lay Presiders/Preachers" -
the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
has formalized what has been long practiced
(Anglican Journal)

"Franklin Graham Wants Ban on Muslim
Immigration" - Billy's son seems to have
as much polish as Donald Trump these days
(The Christian Post)


Wisdom of the Week - come to us from
Sojourners and the Bruderhof online:

Simone Weil, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich.
Flannery O'Connor, Nellie McClung,
Karl Barth, Naim Ateek, Mother Teresa,
C.S. Lewis, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and
Martin Luther King Jr

Please scroll down to read them.


On This Day -

From the archives of the New York Times:

"Spanish Civil War Begins - Franco Rises"

"Russian Czar and Family Assassinated"


Closing Thought - Marian Wright Edelman

Scroll to the end of the blog to read her.


If you are interested in reading of our
updated fall and winter programs, please
scroll to the end of the blog.

Our New Program Planning Season Begins -
Autumn 2015 Adult Spiritual Development
ACTS Ministry Programs through St. David's

United and the University of Calgary



My Anglican Journal
Column for July 2015

"What I Learned from Fr. René Fumoleau"



John Griffith,
Calgary, AB.

July 13th, 2015

Hi Wayne, I am finally sitting down to
write a note and follow through with
my own suggestion.  I have just finished
two books that point to my growing edge
at 71... evolutionary Christianity -
exploring how the faith is changing to
meet the needs of 21st Century people. 

"God in the Midst of Change: Wisdom for
Confusing Times" by Diarmuid O'Murchu. 
189 pages, three parts.
In the first part he describes our inherited
wisdom; vary succinctly and articulately
lays out 9 unquestioned assumptions of
patriarchy that keep us from "changing
in behaviour, system and structure".

In the second part he describes how this

wisdom is being challenged which is
leading to confusion and chaos. He calls
this a transitional time and for me, he
describes why this is a hopeful sign. 

And in the third part he is describing how
"evolution itself is our best guide at this
dislocating, transformative time." This
book seems to me to be the equivalent
of Martin Luther's 95 theses for our

"The Future of God" by Deepak Chopra.

He begins saying he is writing this book
in response to the atheist who are getting
so much press and is writing in defense of
faith or spirituality.  His approach is not to
take on Dawkins et. al. line by line, but to
say that having an agnostic or atheist mind
is a good beginning for growth.  We need
to face the hard questions of our faith if it
is to be viable. 

One of the main issues is our experience
of God disappointing us and we often find
God absent from our own history.  He goes
on to talk about the contribution of science
to the evolution of the faith and lays out the
position that if we are open we will move
from our doubt and questions (atheist mind)
to faith (religious mind) and if we continue
to be open we will move from faith to
knowing (an experience of the divine).
The future of God seems to lie in humanity
moving to a higher consciousness. 

What I like about the book is his emphasis
on spirituality or faith being a key component
or necessity for the evolution of the faith and
our ability to join God in a relationship that
allows for humanity to grow up.

He emphasizes the need for Wisdom, not
only knowledge, to understand the nature
and presence of God and our place in the
world and the evolution of the human
species. He uses the image of three
worlds: The Physical World where there
we experience duality; The Subtle World
which is a transitional world where both
the physical and the spiritual world are
visible; and the Transcendent World
where we experience the source of reality,
oneness and God who is the merging of
all three worlds. This may not be new for
many of us on this list, but for people who
have not done a lot of reading about
changing perspectives in faith I think
it is a good, clear read. 


Wayne, when I try to summarize a book
it gives me a new appreciation for the talent
you have being a reviewer... a talent I do
not claim to possess.

Blessings for the summer,



Mathew Zachariah,
Calgary, AB

July 14th, 2015

Hello Wayne:
Attached is my essay about my kidney transplant.
I have made some minor changes in the text to
address a wider readership.

Regards, Mathew.



It was during a visit to Kerala, India
in 2007 that a nephrologist examined
me, reviewed my blood results and told
me that both my kidneys were barely
functioning. He wrote a full two-page
letter to my Calgary nephrologist.

Dr. Samuel  Schorr - who had been
postponing the inevitable out of kindness -
was spurred to action and arranged to  have
me and my wife Saro undergo a week’s
training to be a peritoneal dialysis patient
( PDP). As a PDP, I was mostly responsible
for hooking me up to a machine at night in
our bedroom and disconnecting me in the
morning.  As time passed, I became less
able to do the many tasks associated with
the nightly PDP procedure. In 2013, I
requested and was transferred to a
hemodialysis centre in Northland Mall
in northwest Calgary. My stay there was
wonderful as we- patients and staff -
became part of one lively community
where there was often joking and laughter .

From 2008 onwards, I had been on a
transplant list. My occasional enquiries
always made me feel that a possible
new kidney for me was an ever- moving
target. As Saro and I had given up hope,
on a bright, cold January 2, 2015 Friday,
I received a phone call at 2:00 in the
afternoon.  A kidney is likely to become
available in the next few hours . Do you
want to proceed?  My yes was followed
by a firm request that I be continuously
available by phone for the next 24 hours. 
On January 3 at 2:00 am, the call came.
I was to report to Foothills Hospital in
Calgary immediately.

What happened after I was admitted is a
blur. Saro and my two younger sons -
Philip and Alex -were with me until I was
taken for surgery and after I returned to
the post-operation room. Everything had
gone smoothly, the surgeon assured my
family. Saro and our sons who hadn’t slept
for over 28 hours, except for naps, left for
home.  Our boys were a great source of
strength for us on that day and the
challenging days to follow.

Then, Philip received a phone call late at
night on the 3rd: “Come right away so that
your father can see you before we take him
to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).”  They came,
of course, and an intern told Saro that I had
suffered a massive heart attack. Fortunately
that was not the case. I hadn’t had dialysis
which would normally have removed
considerable toxic fluid from my body
since the previous Wednesday. Much fluid
had collected in my body, some of which
had entered my lungs. My heart had to work
harder to pump oxygen into my body which
mimicked some symptoms of a heart attack.
After this unnerving crisis, I began a steady
recovery.   There have been and continue to
be setbacks but only of a manageable kind
and I am gaining strength slowly. I cannot
praise enough the doctors and staff at the
transplant clinic and the ICU for their
professionalism, courtesy and readiness
to help.

I received several cards of good wishes and
emails from our church community. In the days
following the transplant, Saro received many
phone messages assuring her of prayerful
support from other friends in Calgary. Gerry
and Donna Read sent me a card from California.
Vicky Michikovsky came to the ICU and prayed
for me through her and my tears. Christine, our
Rector, visited me and prayed with me. A few
friends brought food to our house. What a
comfort it was to know that we, the Zachariahs,
were a part of a loving, supportive community. 
Many relatives, mostly first cousins in Toronto,
Edmonton, the United States, Singapore, India
and Australia prayed for me and our family;
some lit candles in their churches for my speedy,
safe recovery

Whenever I was lucid enough during my the pre-
and post-operative periods, I prayed that  my 79
year-old body would be strong enough to take the
shock it was about to undergo and that the
professionals who help me would be guided in
their decisions and actions .Having faith in trying
times is indeed a unique gift from God. My deeply
devout adoptive mother (who was also my mother’s
older sister), had taught me, a teenager, a verse
from Deuteronomy  (33:27) that has given me
courage in my many times of crisis: “The eternal
God is thy dwelling place and underneath are the
everlasting arms.”  Although my kidney function
is restored, thanks to a deceased anonymous donor
(God bless him and his family), many health
problems linger for me.

In Calgary and Edmonton in Alberta, the miracles
of kidney and other transplants are occurring
almost routinely and daily, thanks to advances
in modern medicine (including skilled surgeons
and nurses) and technology.  Underneath are the
supportive arms indeed, and some of those arms
are of the faithful at St. Andrew’s and of members
of my extended family.


Mathew’s autobiography, Making Anew My Home  
(Friesen Press, 2014) is available in our church library.

Published in The Fisherman’s Log (Newsletter of
St. Andrew’s Anglican Church, Calgary, Alberta,
Canada), Vol. VI ,No.1 (Pp.7-8), June 2015 (Pentecost).

Previous appearances of Mathew's writings on
Colleagues List, can be located by clicking this link:



Herbert O'Driscoll
Victoria, BC

July 5th, 2015


Here is another NYT article I
found helpful.


New York Times,
April 17th, 2015

"When Cultures Shift"


Martin Marty
Chicago, IL

July 13th, 2015



Jim Taylor,
Okanagan, BC

Web Log
July 15th, 2015


July 22nd, 2015

"An Open Letter to an Atheist"


Ron Rolheiser,
San Antonio, TX

Personal Web Site
July 13th, July 20th, 2015

"The Healing Place of Silence" (and)
"Healing, - A Theory"



The Importance of 
Pastoral Evaluations

The Christian Century
July 13th, 2015

Irish Bishop Reflects on Gay Vote

National Catholic Reporter
July 18th, 2015


Canadian Missionary's Assessment

Faith Today
July/August, 2015


You Can Head Off False Messages

Christianity Today
July 17th, 2015


Only Time, Perspective, Will Tell

New York Times
July 13th, 2015


Congregational Consulting Group Advises

Alban Weekly
July 20th, 2015


Perhaps as Old as Islam Itself

New York Times
July 23rd, 2015


The Impact of World War One
on Their Work

America Magazine Interview
July 22nd, 2015
Formalization of Traditional 
Special Practices

Anglican Journal
July 22nd, 2015

"Treat Them as Germans
  and Japanese in WWII"

The Christian Post
July 21st, 2015



Provided by Sojourners and
the Bruderhof Online:

Humility is attentive patience.

- Simone Weil


Well-behaved women
seldom make history.

- Laurel Thatcher Ulrich


All human nature vigorously resists
grace because grace changes us and
the change is painful.

- Flannery O'Connor


It is so much easier sometimes to sit
down and be resigned than to rise up
and be indignant.

- Nellie McClung


Laughter is the closest thing to the
grace of God.

- Karl Barth


It is part of the genius of the Bible
that it preserved a record both of
the good and of the bad.

- Naim Ateek


God has identified himself with the
hungry, the sick, the naked, the
homeless; hunger, not only for bread,
but for love, for care, to be somebody
to someone; nakedness, not of clothing
only, but nakedness of that compassion
that very few people give to the unknown;
homelessness, not only just from a shelter
made of stone, but that homelessness that
comes from having no one to call your own.

- Mother Teresa


I live in the Managerial Age, in a world of
“Admin.” The greatest evil is not now done
in those sordid “dens of crime” that Dickens
loved to paint. It is not done even in
concentration camps and labor camps.

In those we see its final result. But it is
conceived and ordered (moved, seconded,

carried, and minuted) in clean, carpeted,
warmed and well-lighted offices, by quiet
men with white collars and cut fingernails
and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need
to raise their voices.

- C. S. Lewis


Christianity means community through
Jesus Christ and in Jesus Christ.

No Christian community is more or less
than this. Whether it be a brief, single
encounter or the daily fellowship of years,
Christian community is only this.

We belong to one another only through
and in Jesus Christ.

- Dietrich Bonhoeffer


I believe that standing up for the truth
of God is the greatest thing in the world.
This is the end of life. The end of life is
not to be happy.
The end of life is not to achieve pleasure
and avoid pain. The end of life is to do
the will of God, come what may.

- Martin Luther King Jr.


From the archives of the New York Times:

"Spanish Civil War Begins - Franco Rises"

"Russian Czar and Family Assassinated"


CLOSING THOUGHT -  Marian Wright Edelman

It is so important not to let ourselves off the
hook or to become apathetic or cynical by
telling ourselves that nothing works or makes
a difference. Every day, light your small candle.
The inaction and actions of many human beings
over a long time contributed to the crises our
children face, and it is the action and struggle
of many human beings over time that will solve
these crises with God’s help. So every day,
light your small candle.



Our New Program Planning Season Begins -
Autumn 2015 Adult Spiritual Development
ACTS Ministry Programs through St. David's

United and the University of Calgary:


Theme: "Living in Darkness - Living in Light"

Books: "Learning to Walk in the Dark"
              by Barbara Brown Taylor

             "Between the Dark and the Daylight"
               by Joan Chittister

A  ten-week study in contemporary spirituality
with books by two prominent Protestant and
Catholic writers.

Ten Monday evenings, 7-9PM
In the St. David's TM Room
September 21st - November 30th, 2015

Books and Registration/Hospitality - $60.00
Books only - $35.00

Brenda and Joan will lead the sessions during
the two Mondays that Jock and Wayne are
participating in the "Jerusalem and the Lands
of Three Great Faiths Tour" (October 16th - 31st)

Now into our sixteenth year of Monday Night Studies
Our thirty-first series of (usually) ten week sessions!

Check our study archives for all 45 book notes:



Theme: The Book of Exodus from the Hebrew Bible
              "A Classic Story of Human Liberation"

Twelve sessions 10-11 AM
In the St. David's TM Room
September 17th - December 3rd

No charge.
Study resource -

The DK Complete Bible Handbook



"Jerusalem and the Land of Three Great Faiths"
  October 16th - 31st, 2015

Hardcopy tour details brochure
is available at the church

Tour Company: Rostad Tours Calgary
Tour Hosts: Wayne and Marlene Holst
Sponsored by: St. David's ACTS Ministry
Endorsed by: St. David's Church Council

Talk with or write to Marlene and Wayne

We have 27 paid-up participants

Books for consideration -

One City, Three Faiths
by Karen Armstrong (1997)

DK Eyewitness Travel (2014)

TOP TEN: Israel, Including Sinai & Petra
DK Eyewitness Travel (2014)



Interfaith Chaplains' Book Studies
for faculty, students, staff, and
campus guests - Autumn, 2015

Book Title to be determined

Book Study Co-Sponsored by:
The Faith and Spirituality Centre,
University of Calgary and
The ACTS Ministry,
St. David's United Church, Calgary

Native Centre Board Room
McEwan Student Centre
Fridays, 12:00 - 1:00 PM. Four sessions.
November, 2015

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

Study Leader: Dr. Wayne A. Holst
Book cost  approximately $20.00



Mount St. Francis Retreat Centre
Cochrane, Alberta

Mark your calendars!

Sunday February 28th
11:30 AM - 4:00 PM

John Griffith is on sabbatical this year.
Reflections will be led by a Franciscan on staff.