MIRACLES: DOCTOR TELLS STORY OF HOW MAN WAS "RAISED FROM THE DEAD" AFTER PRAYER
There were extraordinary scenes on the final day of a Christian medical conference when a famed heart doctor produced evidence of how, after he had prayed for a patient who had died and was being prepared for the morgue, “he was brought back to life after prayer.”
Dr Chauncey W Crandall IV, who serves at the Palm Beach Cardiovascular Clinic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, made his dramatic presentation on 15th June, 2013, on the final day the 10th annual World Christian Doctors Network conference in Toluca City, Mexico, which brought together some 350 doctors and medical professionals from 24 countries.
Dr Crandall began by saying that the dramatic incident took place on 29th October, 2006, when an auto mechanic, Jeff Markin, walked into the Emergency Room at the Palm Beach Gardens Hospital and collapsed from a massive heart attack.
“We had a 53-year-old man who came to the emergency room with a massive heart attack and actually his heart had stopped,” he said. “The medical people had worked on him for over 40 minutes in the emergency room and then declared him dead.
DAN WOODING, of ASSIST News Service, reports on the recent 10th annual World Christian Doctors Network conference in Mexico...|
DID YOU KNOW? NEWS REPORTS...
CHRISTIANS URGED TO MARK WORLD REFUGEE SUNDAY THIS MONTH
5th June, 2013
Churches around the world have been asked to observe World Refugee Sunday later this month, setting it aside as a day to remember and pray for those who are "persecuted and oppressed around the world".
The World Evangelical Alliance and the Refugee Highway Partnership - a global network of Christians committed to welcoming and serving refugees - have joined in calling for Christians to take part in the day which is held on either the 16th or 23rd of June - the Sundays to either side of World Refugee Day on 20th June.
Sight's annual 'Year in Review' is back. See some of the stories which helped define our 2012. Of course, this is a selection of just some of our feature articles - chosen to reflect the range of issues we've covered... |
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Renée Rutherfurd's first full length release FOUND is a self-produced concept album that takes the listener through an ambient vocal and instrumental offering, inviting them to journey through the musical landscape in one sitting."We were made to worship God," Renée says. "In worship, the simple act of thanking God for who He is and what He has done, opens heaven." www.reneerutherfurd.com.au/store.html
DEVELOPMENT: NEW REPORT SETS AN AMBITIOUS FRAMEWORK FOR THE WORLD AFTER THE MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS
Plans to continue the fight against global poverty after 2015 - the expiry date for the Millennium Development Goals - have been broadly welcomed by aid and humanitarian groups.
A panel of 27 world leaders chaired by British Prime Minister David Cameron, Indonesian President Dr Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf handed down a report in late May in which they proposed a range of new benchmarks aimed at ending poverty and promoting development around the globe.
They have recommended that the eight Millennium Development Goals and 21 accompanying targets set in 2000 – which called for a halving of extreme poverty by 2015 - be replaced with 12 goals and 54 targets covering issues ranging from poverty to the empowerment of women, food security to the role of sustainable energy and creating stable and peaceful societies.
DAVID ADAMS reports on the response to a new report aiming to tackle development issues after the expiry of the Millennium Development Goals in 2015...|
SIGHT ESSAY SPECIAL: WHY COMPASSION'S CHILD SPONSORSHIP WORKS
Recent independent research verifies that Compassion’s child sponsorship program is highly effective as a long-term solution to help release children from poverty. From June 2008 to August 2010, independent, empirical research was conducted by Dr Bruce Wydick and a team of researchers from the University of San Francisco, University of Minnesota and University of Washington into Compassion's child sponsorship and its effectiveness. Substantial funding for the study came from BASIS/USAID.
The research focused on six countries (Bolivia, Guatemala, India, Kenya, the Philippines and Uganda) and involved interviewing more than 10,000 people, including 1,860 adults who were registered in Compassion’s child sponsorship program between 1980 and 1992. It took two years to gather all the data, and when the results were published last month in the Journal of Political Economy - one of the world’s most prestigious economic journals- they were overwhelmingly positive.
In the second of a special monthly series of essays, CHOE BRERETON, writing for Compassion Australia, looks at what newly released research into the organisation's child sponsorship program shows and how it's impacted people like Haitian politician Beguens Theus...|
FOR PREVIOUS IN THIS SERIES...
In the first of a new monthly series of articles surrounding the launch of Compassion Australia's new campaign - Compassion Child Sponsorship. IT WORKS - LINA ALARCO and CHOE BRERETON report on the difference child sponsorship in making in one Colombian neighbourhood…|
MUSIC: HOW NAOMI STRIEMER'S WRESTLE WITH 'SUCCESS' LED TO FINDING A NEW SENSE OF PURPOSE IN GOD
Life had been something of a rollercoaster ride for singer Naomi Striemer when God presented her with a choice. Twice on the cusp of ‘making it’ in the music industry - including signing a million dollar record contract with Sony/Epic at the age of just 18 - she had come away disappointed both times.
Ms Striemer was in New York, chasing up an invitation to collaborate with one of the hip-hop industry’s best known names, when she was approached by a stranger – the chauffeur who had been driving her around the city – in the hallway of a studio. He told her about a dream he’d had in which an angel had come to him with a message for her from God: she could either keep pursuing her dreams her way and face more disappointment or could surrender all to God and watch them come true. It was to prove a pivotal moment in her life.
“I just realised how intimately involved God is with each of our lives,” Ms Striemer, now 30, recalls. “And I remember just getting back to my hotel room and bursting into tears and really having a heart-to-heart with God, so humbled and so taken aback that it had happened.”
DAVID ADAMS speaks with Canadian singer Naomi Striemer about her challenging - and inspirational - walk with God...|
TURKEY: AMID ONGOING TURMOIL, ONE MISSION REACHES OUT TO YOUNG PEOPLE
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan remains unapologetic to protestors. He labels them as “looters,” “bums,” “extremists,” and social media liars.
Protesters are upset with Mr Erdogan’s government decisions to restrict alcohol sales and his declarations about appropriate rates of reproduction. It’s grown beyond what started the protests--a sit-down demonstration at Istanbul’s Gezi Park when it was scheduled for demolition.
They see Mr Erdogan as imposing the values of his Islamist-rooted Justice and Development Party (AKP). The party was voted into power two years ago by around half the vote.
Mr Erdogan stated, “This is a protest organised by extremist elements...We will not give away anything to those who live arm-in-arm with terrorism.”
As featured in Sight's Musings column and heard on radio across Australia, Living Life At The Top contains a series of 100 short reflections looking at what living an abundant life is really all about.
Entries close 5pm on 14th June, 2013. The competition is open to people subscribed to Sight's email weekly updates as at 5pm, 14th June, 2013, or to followers of our Facebook page (unfortunately due to government regulation, the competition is not residents of New South Wales or the Australian Capital Territory). To subscribe for Sight's free weekly updates, click here, or to follow Sight on Facebook, click here...
NEW! - THE SIGHT NOTICEBOARD
Sight's Noticeboard is now up and running. If you have a classifieds ad, you can pin it to our noticeboard for as little as $10 a month. Details are here...
THE SIGHT DIRECTORY We've a launched a new directory of organisations and businesses who support us. Check out The Sight Directory here...
Help support Sight by listing your mission organisation or business on our Sight Directory page for as little as $10 a month. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how.
THE SIGHT BOOKSHOP
On the Sight bookshelf this week - Fascinating Times: A Social Commentary, Dead Sea: A Novel, The Unsolved Mystery of Noah's Ark, The Case for Christmas: A Journalist Investigates the Identity of the Child in the Manger, and Grace: More Than We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine...
Come and have a browse through the bookshop and let us know what books you'd recommend...|
D V E R T I S E M E N T
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 email@example.com and we'll post it here under our MyStory banner. We're looking forward to hearing from you!
POSTCARDS: SHARING THE GOSPEL IN ABKHAZIA
Do you know where Abkhazia is? It might be hard to find on a map.
Abkhazia is nestled between Russia and Georgia and struggles with an international identity crisis.
“(Abkhazia is) just a totally war-torn country. The entire infrastructure was pretty much destroyed, and people are living basically in poverty there.”
Basically, the Slavic nation of Georgia wants to claim Abkhazia as one of their regions. Abkhazia wants to be a formally recognised country but isn’t given independent status yet by the UN.
Abkhazia self-declared independence in 1999. They’ve tried to be really friendly with Russia and have a lot of connections between their citizens across the border. It seemed to work since the former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev recognised Abkhazia as a sovereign nation in 2008.
But it really doesn’t mean much if the UN doesn’t give Abkhazia formal recognition.
Mission Network News reports on a mission to take the Gospel to Abkhazia...|
OPEN BOOK SPECIAL - HUNCHES ABOUT JESUS: CROWD MANAGEMENT PROBLEMS, PART 1
Remember, just after Jesus started teaching? His mother and family were worried about the catering. Many were coming to His school, but it seems Jesus had already organised some women to provide meals, and His mother and family weren't involved. They hadn't known about it. They knew He wasn't asking His disciples to fast, but He hadn't asked them to do the catering. He hadn't told them what was arranged. By doing it in this way, Jesus taught His disciples that He wanted women and girls and children in His school and He accepted their help. He also told His disciples off when they ignored children and women.
At the end of his Gospel, Mark tells us that the women standing around the cross with His mother were the ones who had provided for Him and His disciples in Galilee. It is as if Mark writes knowing that his first readers will understand. My hunch is that Jesus had taken care of the catering long before His mother and family realised it was going to be needed. But now I wonder. Does this help us understand something about the catering for that famous event when the 5000 were fed? It might.
In his series on Hunches about Jesus, BRUCE C WEARNE takes a look at what Mark says about the miracle involving the loaves and the fishes...|
SIGHT-SEEING: WHY "OLD" ETHICS AND MORALITY MATTER TO THE FUTURE
Hardly a week goes by in which we don't learn of some new psychological condition.
Consult almost any Sunday newspaper and you'll read about some previously unrecognised malady of the mind which needs attention or cure.
The American Psychiatric Association publishes a regularly updated manual which is used worldwide as a key guide for diagnosing disorders. More than a few of the most recent additions can be attributed to our reliance upon new technologies.
Alongside recognised disorders we seem to be developing a growing list of unofficial pseudo-conditions. In the spirit of this often maddening yet ubiquitous trend, I venture to suggest the introduction into mainstream thought of a malady called historophobia.
The term already has a somewhat limited meaning and recognition within tight academic circles, but I'd like to broaden its application to mean the fear of all things traditional.
Writing from London, MAL FLETCHER explains why, when it comes to morality, we shouldn't fear all things traditional...|
LIFE'S TOUGH QUESTIONS: DOES THE BIBLE CONDONE SLAVERY?
A common objection to the Bible is that it portrays a God who condones slavery. Considering there about 27 million slaves in the world today, it is a major issue that many Christians are involved in try to abolish. The abolitionist movement made famous by William Wilberforce was almost overwhelmingly Christian. So why would Christians fight so hard to abolish slavery if the Bible condones it?
With any issue like this, when we want to look at what the Bible says, context is everything. To paraphrase real estate agents: context, context, context. It can’t be emphasised enough. We can’t just take an issue that we can do things about now and transport it back 2000 years into a completely different culture and context.
The main thing that I see when I read the Bible, particularly the New Testament, is that it is written in a context of suffering. Jesus was a suffering Messiah, and the epistles were generally written to communities which were experiencing some sort of oppression and persecution.
NILS VON KALM takes a look at what the Bible says about slavery... |
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What, if you could, would you say to your future self? FutureMe gives you the chance to do so by presenting the opportunity to write a letter to yourself which can be delivered to your selected email address at a nominated date in the next 50 years (although most letters we saw are to be delivered within the next few years). You can choose to make the letter either private or public (while this means it will be available for anyone visiting the site to see, it will be anonymous).
DAVID ADAMS looks at a website that gives a future glimpse of your past... |
THE 'STORY' OF A REVELATION SCROLL
One of my favourite and most inspiring places in the world is Patmos. It is a small and beautiful Greek Island and was lovely to visit on holiday. But the highlight was to see the cave where John the Apostle was said to have received his Revelation, which he transcribed through a scribe and which became the final book in the Bible. It helped the Bible come alive for me, and inspired me as a writer to be receptive to “what the Spirit is saying to the churches”.
Ben Chenoweth is passionate about helping his readers get in touch with the Bible and its original writers and context. His latest book The Ephesus Scroll is an entertaining historical novel about a scroll of Revelation. It alternates from the world of the early church to the contemporary church, from persecution in Asia Minor to a growing church in modern-day post-communist Russia. So the book takes the reader on a journey following the scroll from Patmos to Ephesus and it being read in the seven churches of Asia Minor.
DARREN CRONSHAW finds Ben Chenoweth's novel, The Ephesus Scroll, an entertaining and informative read... |
NEW! TRAA NEWS
This week, Jade Diary’s Cold Hearted gets a work-over, and a little know US worship leader works with some of the biggest names in Christian and pop music on his latest worship project.
The latest music news, brought to you by The Rock Across Australia...|
GRAVITY - LECRAE
American hip-hop/rap artist Lecrae is one of a handful of Christian musicians generating mainstream success. What’s unusual is that Lecrae is doing this with overt Christian lyrics. He’s not holding back just for popularity. On Walk With Me he raps: "Ah, I'm on a mission, they probably think I'm missing some screws, but it's these three nails that keep me driven. If God ain't with me I know that I'm gonna fail..."
ABRAMS' STAR TREK REMAKE (PART II) CONTINUES TO PLEASE
After director JJ Abrams revived Star Trek with the 2009 reboot, new life was given to the franchise that has been around in various films, TV series as well as numerous novels, comics and videogames.
With so much rich material to draw from, Abrams could’ve taken the film anywhere. It was always going to be a difficult task, with the previous 10 films that ran from 1979 to 2002 fondly remembered (well, most of them), and fans of the series being both loyal and vocal. However, Abrams and his talented team managed to inject a renewed sense of zeal to the adventures of the starship Enterprise.
Now, four years later, comes the sequel with the original cast. Captain Kirk (Chris Pine), Spock (Zachary Quinto) and the rest of the usual team have to match wits and fists with John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch), a former Starfleet officer now turned rogue with talk of vengeance on his mind, and impressive fighting skills at his command.
KRIS BATHER takes a look at the latest Star Trek film, Star Trek Into Darkness... |
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TRENDSPOTTER: 3D PRINTING TO CHANGE THE FACE OF MANUFACTURING
Described as a development which is potentially "bigger than the internet", the emerging field of 3D printing (also known as additive manufacturing) potentially promises the creation of everything from food to car components, all at the touch of a button. Unlike traditional manufacturing processes which strip away material to create an object, 3D printers - or 'fabricators' - use an additive process in which material is progressively added to the object being constructed, building it from the ground up, so to speak. The technology is already used in a range of industries for both building prototypes and manufacturing some components but experts say the uses so far are only scratching the surface of what could be built (one project currently on the drawing board is the building of an entire house using a 3D fabricator; another the printing of moon bases).
DAVID ADAMS takes a quick look at the emerging technology of 3D printing...|
ORIGINS: THE NATION'S CAPITAL TURNS 100
Australia's capital city, Canberra, this month celebrated 100 years since its official founding. But what are its origins?
Canberra was born out of the need for the new Federation of Australia - created in 1901 when six separate British colonies on the continent of Australia united in the formation of a new nation - to have an official capital city.
While eyes initially turned to the existing state capitals of Sydney and Melbourne, it was soon realised that neither would be acceptable to the inhabitants of the other. And so a compromise was reached - Melbourne would serve as the temporary capital until a new city was built, located between Melbourne and its northern neighbour Sydney.
DAVID ADAMS gives a brief overview of the founding of Australia's capital city, Canberra... |
SIGHT HELPDESK: "HAVE YOU RESTARTED YOUR COMPUTER?"
"Have you restarted your computer?”
The phrase can make the most patient of computer users cringe, but it is the one that is used the most. In fact, a British sitcom called The IT Crowd was created in which one of the lines frequently used was "Have you tried turning it off and back on again?"
It added comedic value to the series, however, while working on a busy service desk, I heard it being used like clockwork; usually around one minute into the call. The caller had just explained their problem and with the regularity of a Swiss timepiece, the question would be asked: “Have you restarted your computer?”
And the conversation would continue: “No, no I haven’t.”
“Well if you could do that and call us back if the problem persists,” the call taker would say. For the inexperienced staff, you could hear the desperation in their voices that the caller would do exactly that. They’d hope the caller got someone else next time.
Despite being the butt of many jokes, ALAN TAYLOR says advice relating to restarting the computer is often a good place to start when addressing problems...|
THE BIG PICTURE: THE BIBLE - SEE HOW GOD SAVES PEOPLE
People often say, "Why should I believe in Bible miracles if I can’t see them?"
It’s a fair question. But it’s worth pondering whether or not you’d actually want to be there when they took place. Would you really want to, for example, be with the huge Israelite nation fleeing Egypt in the hot desert chased by the most powerful army in the known world at the time? The Egyptian army’s chariots were killing machines and their cavalry fast and expert. The Bible tells us the Israelites were terrified. Would you really want to be with them as they walked through those parted waters of the Red Sea, huge walls of water buttressed on either side by a majestic act of God? Would you really want to witness this great sign and wonder from the front row? Which would you fear more, the water closing in on you or that terrible army at your heels? The Bible records that the Israelites were so terrified that they pleaded with Moses to go back to Egypt where they’d been slaves. Oppressed, persecuted, slaves with a Pharaoh who liked to kill their children. Probably most people would prefer to sit that miracle out.
To see Outreach Media's June poster and read the full text, follow the link... | more... |
THE WEEKLY SNAPSHOT
2nd June, 2013 Carreg Cennen Castle, western edge of the Brecon Beacons, Wales, by DAVID ADAMS
In Sight's Weekly Snapshot, we'll 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...|
This wordcloud represents the words contained in a chapter of a book of a Bible (with the more frequently used words shown in larger type and one giveaway word removed). The challenge for you is to identify which book it comes from (and if you're really good, which chapter)?... | more... |
POETRY: SILENT FLIGHT
In the silence
The clarity of your voice,
Upon the eagle's wings.
The chains of doubt
That imprison my soul,
Fall away beneath my feet.
It's always interesting to look at something from another angle and the Bible, with its layers and depths of meaning, always has more to reveal. This is part of a project to illustrate the books of the Bible, chapter-by-chapter, as a 'wordle', highlighting the most often used words to give another angle into what it's all about. Follow the link to see a larger version of the word cloud and let us know what insights it brings you... | more... |
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THEY SAID IT
"The President has been clear that the use of chemical weapons - or the transfer of chemical weapons to terrorist groups - is a red line for the United States...Our intelligence community now has a high confidence assessment that chemical weapons have been used on a small scale by the Assad regime in Syria."
- Ben Rhodes, US deputy national security advisor for strategic communications, in a statement made on 13th June, 2013, concerning the use of chemical weapons in Syria. Mr Rhodes went on to say as a result, the President had "augmented the provision of non-lethal assistance to the civilian opposition, and also authorized the expansion of our assistance to the Supreme Military Council (SMC)" (as quoted in astatement on www.whitehouse.gov on 13th June, 2013). For more of They Said It, follow the link... | more... |
THIS WEEK ON THE WEB
12th June, 2013
In a new video posted on his website, Martin Johnson talks to director Rob Draper - currently working at Cinecitta Studios in Rome - about his upcoming film Nicaea. You can see the film here...
Sight now has a Pinterest page where you can see some of our images. To see it, head here...
18th June, 2013
There is a word that is incredibly powerful. A word that is essential for peace between nations, and harmonious marriages. But it’s a word we are reluctant to use. Why are we scared of sorry?
Sorry is risky. It makes one vulnerable. It involves swallowing pride and humbling oneself for the sake of another. But that is precisely why saying sorry is so powerful.
Sorry opens the door to reconciliation.
If sorry is met with calls for retribution, then there’s still more to be done before healing can begin.
Musings is a regularly updated, column featuring short snippets reflecting on daily life from a Christian perspective...|
"WORLD'S OLDEST COMPLETE TORAH" FOUND IN ITALY...
The world's oldest complete Torah has been found in an Italian university with experts reporting it could be as old as 12th century.
The soft sheepskin scroll, which has found in the archives at the University of Bologna - said to be the world's oldest university, was originally believed to have dated from the 17th century.
But when examining the scroll earlier this year, Mauro Perani, professor of Hebrew in the university's Department of Cultural Heritage, found that the text did not contain changes that were introduced in the 12th century.
Well, it's WAY past Easter...and way past time for me to write again.
We have managed a lovely gradual fall into cooler weather, with the days holding their warm centre a lot later into the year than normal, but the cool, dark-edged grey palette is here now and the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness has massaged us officially into winter.
I'm having an unusual year thus far. It's so far outside what I anticipated that I fairly regularly have to stop and recalibrate. It almost feels like I'm sailing in waters I haven't any experience of and I have to take a new sounding every few days to keep track of things.
WOJCZUK's blog about life, the universe and possibly everything...|
INSECTS ON THE MENU?; A 'SPACE ODDITY'; BACK FROM THE DEAD; AND, A FOUR-YEAR-OLD MAYOR...
Insects already form part of the diet of an estimated two billion people but they may well be on even more menus in the future as experts look to alternative means of feeding people. The Food and Agriculture Organisation says that insects (and there are about a million known species) could provide a "readily available source of nutritious and protein-rich food".
ADAMS writes about the odder side of life...|
THOUSANDS OF EASTERN ORTHODOX CHRISTIANS JAM STREETS FOR 'HOLY FIRE' CEREMONY... While Roman Catholics and Protestants in Israel and across the world celebrated Easter Sunday on 31st March this year, for hundreds of millions of Eastern Orthodox in Russia, Ukraine, Greece, the Holy Land and elsewhere the highlight of Easter 2013 came on Saturday, 4th May, when tens of thousands of the faithful packed Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulcher to witness the Holy Fire ceremony marking the resurrection of the Christian messiah.
Over the last year or so I've been realising how everything in life is related to our relationships, whether we realise it or not. All of our interactions are either constructive or destructive for our relating. That's why life is so difficult. I thought of saying during a sermon once that life is easy until you have to relate to someone! It is for this reason that doing our best to get our relationships to work is the most important thing we can do with our lives.
NILS VON KALM'S blog on faith, life and how it all might fit together...|
OUT OF AFRICA: TAKING YOUR BLESSINGS FOR GRANTED...
I have been thinking a lot lately about how blessed I was living in Australia. Sadly much of that blessing was in a sense ‘lost on me’ because I didn’t see it for what it was. The longer I live here the more I realise the day-to-day difficulties people face in the majority of the world. I am amazed that people are able to keep their hope when so many things seem so difficult.
Things I have always taken for granted - access to water, nutritious food and good medical assistance - are, at times, just not available here. I am horrified at the number of times people come back from our local medical clinic saying that there is no medicine or even occasionally no doctor.
LENA JOHNSTONE's blog about life in Malawi, Africa, where she works with the Mphatso Children's Foundation...|
THE STOREROOM: HOW TO ABOLISH SLAVERY? GUEST POST BY THE APOSTLE PAUL... From Paul a servant of Christ Jesus, and Richard his brother.
So, as I wrote, my hope was that in the homes of the Church in Ephesus the relationships between slaves and masters would be transformed.
Also, I left Timothy in Ephesus and wrote this to him: “We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious; for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for adulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers – and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the glorious Gospel of the blessed God, which He entrusted to me.”
Emphasis is mine. Well, actually, the whole thing is mine.
RICHARD THOMAS' sometimes weird and sometimes wonderful 'storeroom' of ideas...|
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