A year ago my older brother Paul passed away after being diagnosed with a brain tumour 6 months previously. I wrote this on Facebook back in February and wanted to repeat it here.
my generation and the next and the next feel more freedom to speak
openly of our loved ones who have passed - to tell their stories, to
laugh at their silliness, to display their crafts, to weep for their
loss, to honour their hopes, to simply speak of the ordinary of their
days - quirky clothes, old music, beat-up cars, odd friends, crazy
weekends, memorable meals, sad mistakes, and unforgettable surprises.
Let's not let their lives be unspoken, but rather spoken often, as
stories full of love and loss, inbreathing and outbreathing of life. May
we do for them as we hope others would do for us - to speak often and
well of us when we are gone.
This Saturday night our band is playing together for the last time with the current lineup. It's a fundraiser to send young people from our church and indigenous young people from SA to our next National Christian Youth Convention in Sydney in January 2014.
7.30 pm. BYO drinks. Food platters on sale.
Set list has songs by Paul Kelly, Things of Stone and Wood, Eric Bibb, Crowded House, James Taylor, Eric Clapton, Mick Thomas, Van Morrison and we may finish up with some Beatles and Queen!
Rosefield Uniting Church, 2 Carlton St Highgate 8271 9528.
Yesterday I flew to Melbourne for the day to present a paper at an annual Symposium on Children's Spirituality hosted by the UCA Centre for Theology & Ministry. This is a great initiative by Chris Barnett to promote some academic reflection on ministry with children. It was attended by about 75 people from across the denominations - churches and schools - and Uniting Church ministry candidates.
Marian de Souza from ACU spoke about "The spiritual dimension" of education. Glenn Cupit from UniSA talked about positive and negative influences on the spiritual lives of children. Due to an early flight home I missed the final presentation.
My paper was from the perspective of faith communities. I showed video excerpts from two inveriews that were conducted as part of my research. I invited people to think about what the interviewees were saying in terms of faith/spiritual development and children. I used Stephen Bevans' Models of Contextual Theology to help people think about how a leaders' or churches' theological perspective on faith/revelation and culture/context might shape its approach to faith development with children. ie. is there a correlation between these things and how they view and engage with the "world of the child"?
I didn't really have enough time (hard to do all that with video clips in 45 mins...) but I did receive a few positive comments afterwards.
It's been helpful to help me work through a bit more how valuable this approach might be for my ongoing research.