THE INTERVIEW: DAVID O'CONNOR, OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD

 

PNG kidsFor those who don't know, what, briefly, is Operation Christmas Child?
"Operation Christmas Child (OCC) is a project of Samaritan’s Purse which sends gift-filled shoeboxes to needy children in over 100 countries around the world. Last year nearly 10 million OCC shoeboxes were given to children."
      How many years has this event been held in Australia and where did the idea come from?
"OCC started in Australia in 1996. The idea started with a UK couple hoping to reach children affected by war and poverty in Eastern Europe and was adopted by Franklin Graham and Samaritan’s Purse. Since 1993 over 113 million OCC shoeboxes have been given to children around the world."
     How many boxes did you send last year and are you aiming to increase that this year?
"In 2013 Australia and New Zealand sent 316,323 shoeboxes to seven countries in South East Asia and the Pacific. Our goal for this year is to send 340,000 shoeboxes which would be a monumental effort by the people of Australia and New Zealand."

     DAVID ADAMS speaks with David O'Connor, manager of Operation Christmas Child for Samaritan's Purse in Australia and New Zealand about the annual effort to bring a smile to the faces of less fortunate children at Christmas... |  more... |

 

 

DID YOU KNOW? NEWS REPORTS...

30th September, 2014

PRAYER VIGILS MARK TWO YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF IMPRISONMENT OF AMERICAN PASTOR SAEED ABEDINI IN IRAN

Christians around the globe have marked the two years American pastor Saeed Abedini has spent in prison with a series of prayer vigils.

Last Friday night - the date of the two year anniversary - the first of hundreds of prayer vigils being held around the world for Pastor Abedini and the persecuted church more broadly was held in front of the White House in the US. Pastor Abedini's wife Naghmeh and two children, and Franklin Graham, CEO of Samaritan's Purse, was among the hundreds who gathered there.

DAVID ADAMS reports... |  more... |


THE DAILY STATISTIC:

30th September, 2014

Proportion of the top 200 companies in Australia which pay no tax:

More than 1 in 10

Source: Who Pays for Our Common Wealth? Tax Practices of the ASX 200 report

| more... |

NEWS...

• Laos: House church Christians detained... |  more... |

• Australia: UN refugee agency expresses "deep concern" after Australia and Cambodia sign agreement on refugees... |  more... |

• Pakistan: Pastor accused of blasphemy fatally shot in jail... |  more... |

• US: International Arms Trade Treaty to take effect by the end of the year; Churches welcome move... |  more... |

| MORE NEWS...|

 

22nd September, 2014

WORLDVIEW: AN "INVISIBLE GHETTO OF REGULATION" SURROUNDS RELIGIOUS COMMUNITIES IN BELARUS, SURVEY FINDS

The government of Belarus looks to keep religious communities within an "invisible ghetto of regulation", closely monitoring religious gatherings and forcing religious communities to "keep out of sight" despite a growing reluctance to crackdown on freedom of religion, according to a new report by a Norway-based religious freedom advocacy group.

The Forum 18 News Service religious freedom survey found that while compared with some other post-Soviet states, "the relative rarity of high-profile violations of freedom of religion or belief – such as arrests of leaders of religious communities - may suggest an absence of restrictions...in fact, the state continues to keep religious communities contained within an invisible ghetto of regulation".

A 2002 Religion Law means all religious communities must be registered with the state and places geographical limits on where religious activity may take place. Foreign religious personnel require state permission to carry out any religious activity in the country and religious gatherings in private homes must not be either "regular or large scale".

DAVID ADAMS reports on the findings of a religious freedom survey of Belarus conducted by Forum 18 News Service...  |  more... |

 

SOAPBOX: BUT I HAVE ROOM MINISTER MORRISON* - AN OPEN LETTER TO THE IMMIGRATION MINISTER AND A PLEA FOR MERCY

30th September, 2014

DetentionThe birds have woken up as I write this and their “good mornings” are ringing out to all who have time to hear. I hear cars on distant roads taking passengers to work but otherwise everything is silent.
      I am contemplating my day. I have many choices. Shall I rush around madly achieving or sit quietly and read? I could shop. I could walk my dog. I could visit friends. I could go to the movies. I could work on that novel. I could bake or sew or paint, if I were that way inclined, or I could plan a trip.
      I thank God for the freedom I have to make my own decisions for this day and those to come. I have only recently realised how much of a blessing that is.
      I have friends in your care Mr Morrison who cannot dream of such freedom and I can only watch as hope drains from their eyes and the energy to imagine evaporates. I believe you to be a good man – a man of compassion and a man of God and I would not want your job if they promised to quadruple your salary. I would surely faint under the strain of the decisions you must make. I pray for you as I have done for all government leaders for many years.

     As the Federal Government looks to re-introduce temporary protection visas along with new safe haven enterprise visas - neither of which will apply to people on Nauru or Manus Island, Queenslander BEV HOLMES-BROWN pleads for mercy for those held in these offshore immigration detention facilities...  |  more... |

FOR THE SIGHT SOAPBOX...  |  more... |


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NIGERIA: SCHOOLGIRL AMONG MORE THAN 200 KIDNAPPED TELLS OF HER ESCAPE FROM BOKO HARAM

 

SaaAn 18-year-old Nigerian schoolgirl -  among those kidnapped from a school by terror group Boko Haram earlier this year - has told of her abduction and subsequent escape.

     Saa was one of more than 200 schoolgirls abducted from the school in Chibok, northern Nigeria, on 14th April. While some have since escaped - some reports suggest more than 50, many of the kidnapped girls - and others taken since - remain missing. Earlier this week, it was reported that another of the girls, aged about 20-years-old, had been freed by the militants.

     In moving testimony, Saa, whose name has been changed for her protection, told a gathering at the Hudson Institute in Washington, DC, last week how she was sleeping in a hostel at her school when she was wakened by the sound of gunfire at about 11.34pm.

     The first of the kidnap victims to speak in the US publicly of her plight, Saa said that after gathering with other girls, she had called her father on the phone and told him what was happened. “Then he said I should not go anywhere...we should gather ourselves together and pray so that God will help us.”

      DAVID ADAMS reports... |  more... |

FOR PREVIOUS:

BIBLE COLLEGE, CHURCHES SHUT DOWN AS BOKO HARAM CLAIMS TERRITORY IN NORTH-EAST

    Morning Star News reports that church leaders in northern Nigeria say at least 350 Christians have been killed in the past week... |  more... |

 

 

IRAQ: CALL FOR CHRISTIANS TO HAVE AN AUTONOMOUS PROVINCE OF THEIR OWN

 

NinevehThe militant Islamist rampage across Iraq has intensified calls for a Christian “safe zone", even as it has made the task of achieving it more difficult.

     The jihadists, who call their movement the “Islamic State,” have “carried out ethnic cleansing on a historic scale in northern Iraq,” leaving “hundreds, possibly thousands” dead or kidnapped, Amnesty International said in recent report. More than 900,000 religious and ethnic-minority Iraqis, about a quarter of them Christians, have fled to Kurdish-controlled regions and elsewhere. Many of those with means are queuing up to leave Iraq for good.

     Now is the time, advocates say, to carve out armed, self-governed spaces within Iraq, to protect Christians and other minorities, and provide some reason for despairing refugees to remain in their homeland.

     “People are talking about it, and people are requesting it and are demanding it,” said Mar Awa Royel, secretary of the Holy Synod of the Assyrian Church of the East, and bishop of the church’s California diocese. The church is among several of the Syriac Christian tradition that traces their lineage to the apostles and language of Jesus - and to the region that today spans parts of Iraq, Syria and Turkey.

      JEFF THOMAS, of the World Watch Monitor, reports on calls for a self-governed spaces for Christians and other minorities to be established within Iraq... |  more... |

FOR PREVIOUS:

ERBIL PRIEST: "WE AIM TO TREAT OUR REFUGEES AS GUESTS"

The World Watch Monitor reports on how Christians are helping refugees in Erbil in northern Iraq... |  more... |

HUMANITARIAN NEED AND LOSS PUNCTUATE CRISIS IN NORTHERN IRAQ

     In an article first published on the World Council of Churches website, GREGG BREKKE looks at the worsening humanitarian situation in northern Iraq... |  more... |

 

 

A HEART FOR THE MARGINALISED: THE AMAZING JOURNEY OF ANNIE CHIKHWAZA RETOLD IN NEW BOOK, MOTHER OF MALAWI

 

Mother of Malawi“He’s not different in anybody’s life – it’s just what you allow Him to be.”

     Annie Chikhwaza, whose life story is, by any standard, an amazing example of what it means to follow Jesus, knows this better than most.

     Recounted in the recently released biography, Mother of Malawi, her story has led her from a post-war childhood in the Netherlands through an abusive marriage in South Africa to Malawi where she founded Kondanani, an organisation dedicated to helping that nation’s orphans.

     Ms Chikhwaza, who arrived in Australia last week – the first time she has visited, is in the country for a month-long tour to promote the new book and “impact people’s lives” with her story.

     Written by UK-based journalist Al Gibson, the book recounts that, even as a child in The Netherlands, Ms Chikhwaza had a heart for the marginalised. It tells of how, after a turbulent childhood in which she was abused and rejected, she gave her life to the Lord at the age of 19 before heading to the UK where she meet her first husband David and finally settling and raising a family in South Africa.

    DAVID ADAMS speaks with Annie Chikhwaza, founder of Kondanani, about her extraordinary life - the subject of a new book, Mother of Malawi... |  more... |

 

 

ESSAY: SCOTLAND DECIDES - CAN'T THE HEART AND THE HEAD BOTH SAY 'NO'?

 

ScotlandAs an “imported” though nonetheless committed Brit, I find it hugely sad – and somewhat surreal – that a unique family of nations and the cradle of modern democracy, Great Britain, may soon be no more.

     Shortly millions of Scots will go to the polls to cast their vote to remain within or wave goodbye to a 300-year-old political, economic and, on many levels, cultural union.

     Arguably it should never have come to this. There were no riots or massive pro-independence demonstrations before Prime Minister Cameron agreed to a referendum.

     All that had happened was that the Scottish National Party won power in the devolved Scottish Assembly.

     Granted, it did so against the odds and had as one of its long-standing central platforms the notion of an independent Scottish nation. Yet the SNP leader Alex Salmond, either as candidate or as First Minister, was in no position to guarantee a referendum as that was within the purview of the UK government – which also, it must be remembered, contains elected Scottish representatives.

Mal FletcherWriting from London ahead of Scotland's vote on independence on Thursday, MAL FLETCHER reflects on what separation from the United Kingdom might mean... |  more... |

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REGULAR COLUMNS

 

POSTCARDS: POPE FRANCIS HONORS ALBANIA'S PERSECUTED AND THANKS 'ALIVE' CHURCH

TiranaAlong the Boulevard of National Martyrs in Albania’s capital Tirana, photos of the priests and nuns who fell victim to the country’s violent Communist persecutions were draped in remembrance before Pope Francis and the tens of thousands gathered on recently for a Sunday Mass and his homily.

     In addition to the key themes of encouraging Albania’s young to build their lives in Christ, and fostering peaceful co-existence between the different religious communities, he drew attention to how the country had “suffered so much because of a terrible atheist regime.”

     “Albania sadly witnessed the violence and tragedy that can be caused by a forced exclusion of God from personal and communal life,” he said. “When, in the name of an ideology, there is an attempt to remove God from a society, it ends up adoring idols, and very soon people lose their way, their dignity trampled and rights violated.”

     After their rise to power near the end of World War II, the Communists decreed that the activities of all religious communities be supervised by the state. It was after Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution in 1966 spawned a similar movement in Albania, however, that the church faced its darkest hour.

     In an article first published on ASSIST News Service, author PAUL ALKAZRAJI writes about Pope Francis' recent visit to Albania... | more... |

 

OPEN BOOK SPECIAL - HUNCHES ABOUT JESUS: THE END

Moon eclipseThe entire creation is put on alert. Jesus presents the Big Picture. Something is at work in the creation which puts it all in danger of completely falling apart. As a result, the sun, the moon and the stars no longer know their place. God's purpose for His creation and for us, has been subverted; His Word has been ignored. Creation is out of joint. The shaking of creation sends a tremor into the courts of Heaven itself.

     It appears as if this subversion would unseat God with all His glory disintegrating in total chaos and anarchy for all creation to see. But God's purposes are not thwarted, nor are they going to be. Jesus expected these massive events to take place when everything would seem totally "out of whack" and He taught us to be ready. He knew the sun, the moon and the stars as God's gifts to us to help us fine-tune our lives. But when people take the path of self-destruction it's not just their individual lives that are at risk - the entire creation is on the line. To ignore God's purposes is to threaten the place of all God's creatures under heaven, including these creatures that help us from the heavens. Let's take careful note of all this. Surely Jesus was teaching that God takes care of us.

      BRUCE C WEARNE looks at a passage in Mark 13 in which Jesus talks about the second coming of Christ...  | more... |

 

THE WORD: TEACHER (RABBI)

RoadwayThe designation of Jesus as rabbi, translated teacher, loses its significance and challenge for a 21st century reader who computes current ideas on what it is to be a teacher.

    As a rabbi of His era, Jesus was a teacher of followers or disciples. Such a relationship extends beyond a teacher-pupil connection. Whilst the followers sat and learnt at the teacher's feet they also honoured their rabbi as 'My Great One'. There is a co-ownership and commitment to each other in this teacher-disciple relationship.

     Beyond His disciples, Jesus was also generally acknowledged in the community as teacher. People who did so were laying claim to Jesus when addressing Him as 'My Great One'. To call Jesus rabbi was not solely and only a mark of respect.

     When you understand the designation, its significance and inferred relationship, you can appreciate why the disciples were to quash references to themselves as teachers.

     All authority resides with and remains in Jesus. His disciples were not to assume a role of authoritative teacher. They were to become and remain teachers in His name alone.

     LLOYD HARKNESS looks what Jesus' disciples meant when they described Him as teacher or 'rabbi'... | more... |

 

THIS LIFE: ENDURE

EndureI want to tell you about one of the most remarkable men I’ve ever met. His name is Stan Cottrell. He is a runner. But to say that is sort of like saying Rembrandt could draw, or Shakespeare wrote stuff. Stan has run all his life, all over the world. He has run in dozens of countries; he has earned certificates and keys to dozens of cities around the world; he is in the Guinness Book of World Records; he has been welcomed by most of the world’s famous leaders of the past generation.

     I didn’t know his name, but Stan has been on magazine covers, on many TV programs, and had his picture taken with presidents, prime ministers, and even dictators. His list of achievements and recognitions seem almost as long as, well, the Great Wall of China, which Stan has run atop many times.

    But Stan Cottrell is not an Olympic runner. He seldom runs in the famous marathons. Stan has set records for time, especially long distance runs -- very long distances, like across entire nations -- but those races are not his forte.

      In an article first published by ASSIST News Service, RICK MARSCHALL reflects on what it means to be an endurance runner... | more... |

 

SIGHT-SEEING: WORDS THAT BUILD OR DESTROY

CrossOn the morning of 11th September, 2001, theologian Miroslav Volf was just finishing a talk to the International Prayer Breakfast of the United Nations in Manhattan. The time was 8:34am. The topic was reconciliation.

     The minutes following would see some of the greatest chaos and turmoil ever on American soil as planes crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center not far from where Volf had been speaking.

     During a recent interview, Volf was asked if he thought his words of reconciliation felt empty as 3,000 people died in what he describes as an occurrence that was the opposite of reconciliation.

     Words have the ability to build up or destroy. When I was in school we had a saying: “sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me". It was a saying designed to protect our minds against bullies. While you may call me every name under the sun, they can’t hurt me because I know I'm worthwhile.

     On the 13th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks in New York, NILS VON KALM reflects on the power of words...  | more... |

FOR THIS AND MORE OF OUR REGULAR COLUMNS, GO TO OUR REGULARS PAGE here


 

SHARING FAITH...

28th August, 2013
My son and I met someone on holidays who was in a wheelchair. He was paralysed on the left side of his body due to a virus that effected his brain.
      He told us that he could have been healed if the doctors had diagnosed his condition within 72 hours but they were not able to. He had since been in a car accident where he was hit head-on by a drunk-driver, an accident which caused further permanent health issues.

     To read the rest of this story... | more...|

Looking to encourage or inspire others or simply share how meeting God has changed your life? We're looking for your story - perhaps the inspiring story of how you came to know Jesus or an incident in your life in which you saw God's hand at work. MyStory - an addition to our existing LifeStory column - is a new regular feature where we'll publish your story for the benefit of others. Simply write your story in 200 words or less and email it to editor@sightmagazine.com.au and we'll post it here under our MyStory banner. We're looking forward to hearing from you!

 

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A VIRTUAL 'PRAYER BOWL', AND SERMONS TO REVISIT...
Prayer bowlsThe PrayerBowls app allows the creation of a virtual "prayer bowl". The idea is that you type out your prayer requests and add them to the bowl. Every day, during your quiet time you can pray through your requests. You can share them via social media or email them. There’s also a global bowl where you can place prayer requests so that others can pray over them.

      ALAN TAYLOR a helpful prayer app and another featuring sermons by some of 20th century Christianity's leading lights... | more... |

 

CLICK

10 MINUTE MAIL

10 Minute MailNeed to give out an email address but worried it might be an invitation for spammers to unleash a torrent of unwanted inbox clutter? Or perhaps you're out and about, have forgotten your email  service password but need desperately to receive a document someone is about to imminently send to you. Look no further than 10 Minute Mail, one of a number of free, short-term, easy-to-use email services accessible via your web browser.

      DAVID ADAMS tests out a disposable email service... | more... |

 

LISTEN

U2'S SONGS OF INNOCENCE "WORTH THE WAIT"

Songs of InnocenceLast Wednesday was a good day for me. In fact it was a Beautiful Day. You might even say it was Magnificent. Do you see where I’m going with this? Yes, The Miracle has occurred. After years of speculation, the latest U2 album is finally here. And, just like that other miracle in Luke 9:10-17, hundreds of thousands of iTunes users have downloaded it for free and had their fill.

     But can you ever get your fill of a U2 album? I have listened to this one a few times already and while I prefer some songs over others, those lesser ones are growing on me. You could say a U2 song is like pizza, chocolate or sex: when it’s good it’s really good, and when it’s bad it’s still pretty good!

     This album has definitely been worth the wait. The first six songs have the potential to become classics, some of them even anthems. I can just picture them ringing out around massive stadiums around the world (although they would have to be pretty special to beat the sheer spine-tingling electricity of Where the Streets Have No Name being performed live).

      NILS VON KALM listens - and then listens again - to U2's new release, Songs of Innocence...  | more... |

Soundbite25th September, 2014

NEW! We're now presenting an audio version of the TCM Update. So to hear CAM WANT with this week's edition of The TCM Update, simply click on the link...  | more... |

 

WATCH

HOLY GHOST A "RISKY" EXPERIENTIAL JOURNEY

Holy GhostThe latest of US film-maker Darren Wilson’s documentaries, Holy Ghost opens with a narration in which Wilson says he wants to show people something “they’ve never seen before”: “Some say He’s dead. Some say He’s silent. Some say He’s a figment of my imagination. But the Holy Spirit is real and I’m going to prove it.”

     It’s with that premise in mind that Wilson sets off on journey that's all about taking a risk and allowing the , Holy Spirit to be his guide (there's “no script, no plan”), in show how He (the Holy Spirit) is moving in the world today.

   The crowd-source funded film kicks off in Salt Lake City  - the “heart of Mormon country” - where we follow Christians Jamie Galloway and Will Hart as they pray for people they encounter - including a cessationist Christian street preacher - before we scoot across the world to Monte Carlo where a rainstorm leads US evangelist Todd White to pray for a woman on a yacht.

     DAVID ADAMS watches the US-produced documentary Holy Ghost...  | more... |

 

READ

A GUIDE TO GETTING THE MOST OUT OF YOUR NON-PROFIT IN A COMPLEX WORLD

Forces for GoodWhat can good-hearted non-profit organisations do in the face of huge sometimes seemingly insurmountable social problems? It is easy to recognise the importance of civil society and social entrepreneurship and why it is a growing sector. Our world and communities today need the best efforts of non-profit organisations to respond to today’s challenges.

     Progress has also been made in some areas, thanks to the actions of both civil society and large agencies such as the UN. Nevertheless, the scale and complexity of the problems of the world today are only increasing – not least of which include extreme poverty, climate change, health care, archaic education systems, unjust economical and judicial systems, and who knows what epidemic challenges are around the corner? What are the best practices for nonprofits seeking to respond? Jim Collins has written business books like Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...and Others Don’t (HarperCollins, 2001) and with Jerry Porras, Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies (HarperBusiness 1997), but what is it that make nonprofits “great” and lasting in what they attempt to do to make their communities and their world a better place?

     DARREN CRONSHAW takes a look at the updated Forces for Good...  | more... |

FOR THIS AND MORE OF WEBSITES, FILMS, BOOKS, COMICS AND MUSIC, GO TO OUR REVIEWS PAGE here


LIFESTYLE

 

Silent Night ChapelSEE YOU THERE! SIGHT'S NEW TRAVEL DEALS COLUMN...

Sight is unveiling a new travel deals column for our Australian readers. Every week, we'll try and bring you a new deal that might be of interest.

This week - spend Christmas in Salzburg, Austria, with a side excursion to a memorial service at the Silent Night Chapel on Christmas Eve.

     Follow this link to see this travel deal in full... | more...|

TRENDSPOTTER: ALTERNATIVE CURRENCIES LOOK TO CASH IN

BitcoinsAlternative currency systems have been around for centuries, but the growth of the internet has, in more recent times, led to the rise of a new generation of alternative, digitally-based currencies. While among the most often mentioned of thse cryto-currencies is Bitcoin, others include Dogecoin, Litecoin and Ripples. Bitcoin itself was apparently invented by the somewhat mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009. Used to pay for a range of things - from real estate, both real and virtual, to tickets to musical gigs, restaurant bills and at a range of online businesses.

     DAVID ADAMS takes a look at the growing use of alternative, digital currencies like Bitcoin... | more...|

 

SIGHT HELPDESK: PREPARING TO PRINT? HERE'S SOME TIPS TO HELP FIND THE RIGHT PRINTER FOR YOU...

Step into just about any office in the early '80s and you're sure to have heard a dot-matrix printer screaming away, its pins punching the ribbon and leaving dots in the form of letters. Thankfully, quieter solutions were on the horizon.

     In 1981, Xerox released a laser printer designed for office use, but priced at around $US17,000, the printer had limited appeal. It was 1984 when Hewlett-Packard ushered in the first laser printer for the mass market. The printer was perfect for small businesses and churches, but with a price of $US3,495, it was out of reach of most at the time.

     Over time, the technology improved and laser printers became more affordable. With their superior print quality and low hum when working, they slowly became the mainstay of the modern office. Over time, multiple functions were added, allowing scanning to folders, email, faxing and photocopying.

     While laser printers became common in offices, inkjet printers became common in homes and small offices. These devices can also incorporate the features of scanning, faxing and photocopying. But that's where the similarities end.

      ALAN TAYLOR gives his tips for what to look for when buying a printer... | more...|

 

KNOW IT ALL: EBOLA VIRUS

With the death toll from the latest Ebola outbreak now more than 1,400, we take a look at what we know about the disease...

• Ebola virus disease (EVD), formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever, first appeared in 1976 in simultaneous outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of Congo (then Zaire) and Sudan.

• The disease takes its name from the site of the DRC outbreak - the village of Yambuku, located about 100 kilometres south of the Ebola River. It was first 'discovered' by 27-year-old Belgian scientist and medical school graduate Peter Piot, who went on to become under secretary-general of the United Nations and executive director of UNAIDS.

• EVD is believed to be naturally hosted by fruit bats and is understood to be transmitted to the human population through contact with blood or bodily fluids of infected animals such as chimpanzees, gorillas, fruit bats, monkeys, forest antelope and porcupines.

    DAVID ADAMS takes a look at some facts about the deadly Ebola virus...  | more...|

FOR THIS AND MORE, GO TO OUR LIFESTYLE PAGE here

 

20/20

 

WORDPLAY CHALLENGE #3: RECKON YOU KNOW YOUR BIBLE?

The Wordplay Challenge is back! This wordcloud represents the words contained in a oft-quoted passage from the Bible (with the more frequently used words shown in larger type). The challenge for you is to identify the passage - which book and chapter does it come from? Follow the link to have your say... | more... |

 

THE BIG PICTURE: ASKGOD.COM.AU

If there were any question you could ask God, what would it be? Would you ask about pain and suffering or why sometimes Christians do such a bad job of living up to Jesus’s teachings? Perhaps you’d like to know who God is and how you can know Him or why He made the world the way He did. There are so many kinds of questions to ask - questions about life’s purpose or church or what the future holds or about your personal situation. Whatever your question, now is the time to ask God.
      But you may be wondering how a website can speak for God? The answer is that Christians believe the Bible is God’s inspired Word. It has answers to life’s important questions. So, any response from AskGod.com.au will always be based on what the Bible does or doesn’t say. Which might just raise another question in your mind. Namely, ‘Why is it reasonable to think the Bible is God speaking?’

     To see Outreach Media's September poster and read the full text, follow the link... | more... |

 

THE WEEKLY SNAPSHOT

    22nd June, 2014

    Balloons over Melbourne by DAVID ADAMS

In Sight's Weekly Snapshot, we'll endeavour to publish an image from somewhere around the globe every week. To see this image in a larger scale and for details of how you can submit images, follow the link...  | more... |

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ARTS PAGE - 20/20 here


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If you think you can help out on Sight, then please let us know. We're always looking for new writers and reviewers and the more technically minded. If you'd like to join the Sight team, simply send an email to editor@sightmagazine.com.au

 

 

THEY SAID IT

 

 

"Climate change is the defining issue of our age. It is defining our present. Our response will define our future."

- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, speaking at the opening of a UN Climate Summit in New York on 23rd September, 2014.

For more of They Said It, follow the link...  more...

 

 

THIS WEEK ON THE WEB

 

 

18th September, 2014

In a speech made in Rome earlier this week, Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, president of the Caritas international federation of Catholic charities, said conflicts in Iraq, Syria and Gaza have resulted in the greatest humanitarian crisis since World War II. You can read his complete speech on The Tablet here...


For previous 'This week on the web'... | more... |

Sight now has a Pinterest page where you can see some of our images. To see it, head here...

 

 

MUSINGS   

 

 

CLIMATE CHANGE...

30th September, 2014

PAUL CLARK

Everything I need to know to fight climate change I learnt from my grandfather. Having lived during the great depression he lived his entire life as a confronting example of reduce, reuse, recycle - before those words became trendy.
He had his own veggie garden and chooks, in suburban Melbourne. He reused everything; nails, jars, newspapers, even old phone books as toilet paper. His fridge went for 40 years, he re-soled his shoes with second hand leather and he hadn’t bought a new outfit in 50 years; darning can mend just about anything.

Musings is a regularly updated, column featuring short snippets reflecting on daily life from a Christian perspective...  | more... |

 

 

THE WORD EXPLAINED

 

 Wordle

Wimple

Teacher (Rabbi)

Nun


| more... |

 

 

BLOGS

 


TIME TO HONOR THE DIM SIM?; THE IG NOBELS; A LATTE...OR A BEER?; AND, GREEN ALIEN EGGS...

Does the dim sim deserve a special place of honour among Australia's home-grown tasty treats? That was the question facing Melbourne Lord Mayor Robert Doyle recently after a group of uni students cooked up the idea of honouring the meaty treat with a bronze statue in the bayside city - after all, it was in Melbourne that Chinese chef William Wing Young invented the dim sim around 1945.

DAVID ADAMS writes about the odder side of life... | more... |


TOMBS OF JONAH AND DANIEL DESTROYED IN MOSUL, SAY REPORTS...
Following news last week that members of extremist group, the Islamic State, had destroyed the tombs of the Old Testament prophets Jonah and Daniel, both of which were located in Mosul in northern Iraq, we take a quick look at their history.

First, Jonah. There is tradition that the Prophet Jonah - known for being swallowed by a leviathan or great whale after refusing to obey God's commands to deliver a warning to the people of the Assyrian city of Ninevah, a message which he did eventually deliver - was eventually buried in the ancient city where Mosul now stands.

DAVID ADAMS reports... | more... |


AN END...AND A NEW BEGINNING...

What's on my mind?... Thanks for asking, Facebook.
Time to say goodbye to Just Been Thinking after many years, stops and starts. Thank you for your attention over the years, readers. Thank you for your endless commitment, encouragement and patience, David Adams- editor extraordinaire.
And now...I migrate back across to sightmagazine.com.au to begin a Coach Column, sharing insights in the area of human behaviour and life design.
 The final instalment in ANN WOJCZUK's blog about 'life, the universe and possibly everything'...
  | more... |


THOUSANDS OF CHRISTIANS IN JERUSALEM FOR FEAST OF TABER-NACLES...
Despite the recent tensions in Syria, over 5,000 Christian pilgrims from nearly 100 nations will descend on Jerusalem for the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem's annual celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles.

The festival began last Friday evening in Ein Gedi at the Oasis Hotel and continues to Jerusalem's International Convention Center for the remainder of the week of Sukkot. The weeklong celebration is expected to generate $US16 million in revenues, and is the largest annual tourist event to Israel.

ELISA MOED, of Travelujah, reports...  | more... |

 

A DAY THAT CHANGED MY LIFE...

Can you think of a time when someone has been brutally honest and vulnerable about themselves and it's taken you by surprise? For me it happened about 20 years ago at a church I had just started attending.

As I remember it, the person leading the service that day asked anyone to come forward who wanted to share what they thought God had been doing in their lives recently. One young guy got up - he was probably about my age at the time - and told about his relationship with his girlfriend and how he had recently gotten her pregnant, and how he had walked away from his faith. He then shared about the support he had received from the church community through his struggle.

 NILS VON KALM'S blog on faith, life and how it all might fit together...  | more... |

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