“What makes you happy?” I ask the question of an old woman on a green mountainside beyond the remote village of Same, five hours inland from Dili, Timor Leste. Every line on her face tells a story. “Being here with these people – my family and friends – makes me happy. We look after each … More Give me the simple life
“Rough day at work, hey?” says my fifteen year old with a grin when she comes home and notices the first draft for our upcoming UnitingWorld campaign. “We don’t believe in charity,” declares my scrawl on a large sheet of paper, folded in two. It’s a tagline probably worthy of the raised eyebrow. For years … More Time to give up charity?
There are probably dents in my forehead from pressing it up against the window pane as Fiji’s coastline sneaks into view beneath us – I’ll never tire of watching the land creep up under the wing tip of a plane as we tilt away from the sun. There’s something about seeing the earth from the … More Smokin! How to set the world aflame from the pages of the bible.
The moment I spot the mobile phone I flash an eyebrow at our photographer. It says “Damn it, can we get that out of there? If not physically, then at least out of the shot? I totally forgot about mobile phones…” Then I continue to forget about mobiles because #otherfishtofry and clearly Alex just thinks … More Yep, poor people have mobiles. Please give them more money.
It amazes me how difficult it is to be a really decent human being and how little time and energy we put into trying to achieve it. If you want to be a good plumber or lawyer, you’ll spend years and dollars perfecting your trade under the watchful eye of your superiors, start at the … More Who wants to be a really decent human?
If you ask B why she goes to church, up until pretty recently morning tea will have figured high on the list. Memorable moment – our three year old clinking communion glasses with her father and declaring loudly: “Cheers.” J would probably tell you she goes because her two best friends from Primary School are there, along … More Why I’m chuffed our daughters are still part of church – and why we haven’t invited you to come.
I was chatting with a friend the other day about being content. “I’m reading this book and it says something about it…” she told me. “Here we go… ‘God wants you to be content….’ That’s helpful isn’t it?” We both started laughing. I’m sure the book said other stuff too, but it struck me as … More How to be completely content in three easy steps
In the lead up to what should have been Hugh’s eleventh birthday, I find myself thinking about the barbed wire and the paddock. That’s the image that’s grown with me since Hugh’s birth and death, eight hours apart, October 29 2004. His bare little chest, strong, rising and falling with the respirator. Inside, a pair … More One more wish on Hugh’s eleventh birthday
“He looks really sad. I hope he’s got someone looking after him.” Brydie is nine and about the most empathic person I’ve ever met. She feels the pain of both man and beast, and also creatures that are stuffed. Tony Abbott probably feels like he falls into that last category. Browsing the Guardian online over my shoulder, … More Tony’s sad-face – a lesson in life from my nine year old.
The Australian Government announced this week that we’ll be permanently giving new homes to 12,000 Syrians refugees fleeing war in their country. While some cheered, hot on the heels of this decision came the question: why would we let any more needy people into Australia while there are still children living on the streets and … More Why would we let more needy people into Australia while some of our homeless and elderly aren’t adequately cared for?