Thinking Faith blogs
Every Wednesday in Hartford, Conn. USA homeless people can get a free haircut. However 82-year-old retired barber Anthony Cymerys does ask for a hug in return.
Inspired 25 years ago by a church sermon about the homeless, Anthony decided he wanted to do something for those who have no home. His clients line up on park benches and wait their turn for a haircut and a hug.
"I love these guys," Cymerys said about them. He paused and turned to his client in the chair, "You know I love you, right?"
HITEC university is situated about 20 miles north-west of Islamabad in Pakistan. It got started in 2007 and now has more than 1400 students.
This is how it 'sells' itself on its website:
HITEC University offers undergraduate and postgraduate programs in Engineering, Management Sciences, Mathematics, Computer and Islamic Shariah. The up-to-date and well-conformed [sic] syllabi have been tailored to the market needs and are designed to equip the students with the latest developments in their fields of specialization.
Over the last two weeks RealityBites has delivered nine separate lectures, workshops and seminars to more than 700 people in both Australia and the UK. It's been a bit of a rollercoaster but very rewarding and encouraging.
People do love our stories. And if these dramatic, cheeky and intriguing stories can help them spill the perfume of God's kingdom, it's even better!
It's a very busy month for RealityBites. I will be speaking to 650 Christian teachers at a conference organised by Christian Education National in Melbourne which is downunder. I will also be delivering a range of workshops to smaller numbers at the same conference. I will then be speaking at several schools in the Victoria state.
My focus will be spelling out the unique RealityBites pedagogical methodology. You'll have to get on a plane and join me in Melbourne if you want to know more.
In the UK, it is estimated that around 350,000 people are suffering from a gambling addiction. It is now easier than ever before to gamble, with a huge number of online betting shops enabling people to gamble 24 hours a day. Every year over 7 billion pounds is spent on gambling.
If a gambling problem is left to fester, debts can spiral out of control and people can become withdrawn, depressed and even suicidal!
Here is a story that can help us discuss this important social issue with young people.
Why did Jesus teach in parables? Some thoughts on this.
Parables are cryptic and provocative riddles. They are hard to understand. Think 'whodunit' rather than 'documentary'. They puzzle, disturb and sometimes baffle people. They are not meant to be easy listening like Andy Williams or Mantovani.
I'm exploring role models in my blog. Here is an Italian woman who has become a bit of a celebrity for her Christian response to the Mafia.
In May 1992 Mafia thug Giovanni Brusca set off a huge bomb in the small Sicilian village of Capaci that killed antimafia investigating magistrate Giovanni Falcone, several police officers and his wife.
At the state funeral of Falcone and the other murdered government officials, Rosario Schifani, the widow of one of the dead police officers said the following:
Here are four I've found but I need more! Can you help me?
Over the moon with this recent RealityBites subversive activity in Cumbria. Henry Brooks is a gifted writer and friend and is now conducting his own RealityBites events! He writes as follows:
I was asked 2 weeks ago by a local secondary school to do three one-hour RE lessons when presenting year 7s with their Gideon New Testaments. 'Remember', said the Head of RE, 'some of these children won't know who Jesus is, so keep it simple!' What could I do to keep them interested for a whole hour?