Dunedin, New Zealand, my city - my people

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sunday sound off.

Quoted in the paper
I got quoted in the local newspaper yesterday. This reporter has been working on this article for some time. He has done his homework and I quite like what he has come up with. It raises the question of the circumstances of people with mental health problems in our community and how some often end up in prison. It is a big issue and not easy to deal with.  While governments are reluctant to throw money at it, I would suggest the consequences of not dealing with it positively means that it cost the community huge amounts of money in other, more negative ways.
1937 TV

1937 Austin

1937 washing machine
Organ music
At Church we use a 1937 Hammond Organ. Now I confess I am one of 95% of New Zealanders who do not like organ music. (according to a survey done about 20 years ago.) I wish we had different music on offer at Church.  I remember years ago one of my then leaders threatening to leave the Church if we ever got rid of organ music. I tend to think the medium is the message. If we sing old songs played on an old musical instrument we are sending a signal that "Church" is a quaint old past time relevant for a different generation. We consign our religion to be a museum peice. I wonder if those who love the organ so much would still drive a 1937 car, use a 1937 washing machine or watch a 1937 Television? Anyway - just saying.... I just think it sends the wrong messages.

A bit sick
For quite a few days now I have been struggling with some flu type symptoms. They have never got bad enough to stop work, just an annoying wheezy chest and rough throat. Today I have really struggled and leading the service this morning was tough going. (Perhaps that's why the organ music got to me this morning?) I think I did some things yesterday which made it worse. Where as I should have taken Saturday easily I had promised to do some carpentry under the Church floor. We have a lot of damage done by the borer beetle in the timber work of our old church. When we moved a piano a few months ago one wheel of the piano trolly broke through the rotten floor boards, with only the carpet holding things together. I had promised to get under and repair the floor boards from underneath and I had told one elder that I would do it this Saturday. So, even though I was not feeling too well, with his help from the sidelines I scrambled under the floor. Creeping on my tummy through the dirt and dust under the building, I then lay on my back with my fancy renovator tool and cut out the offending boards, replacing them from below with new boards. In the process of cutting, chiseling, hammering and nailing I was taking in an incredible amount of dust and dirt. Ever since then my flu symptoms have got worse. I think the physical effort coupled with the dust and dirt was the final straw as my body was trying to fight the virus. Of course we had to attend a function at the Church last night as well. I will come right, but "a bit fragile" is how I would describe myself tonight. What was to be a run with my friend this afternoon became a short often breathless walk.  She took one look at me when we met and said I looked "awful".  I will enjoy my day off tomorrow.
Better than a Bible Study group
I was sitting having coffee at the fire station the other day and one of the firefighters raised the question of life after death, he had heard a book on the subject being advertised. Four guys were sitting around me and we talked "real" stuff about life, values and death. I felt like pinching myself. It was a privilege to be a part of and to help facilitate. I recalled a church-going fire fighter telling me when I first started at the fire station that I would never get to talk religion around a fire station. He inferred it was a waste of time me being there. It was not so much "religion" but better than that - "spirituality".  - Special. I had a week in which there were a number of these special type conversations where your inner-beings meet in friendship.  I am indeed fortunate.

No comments: