In the Name of Love? The New Abortion Laws

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As we know abortion has been legalised in Queensland and in my newsfeed, I see two very distinct sides. One that goes against the idea of killing a developing human being and one that promotes women’s choice.

Another thing I see is the pure hatred each side seems to have for the other. You walk past someone on the street and no punches are thrown. But as soon as you give them a keyboard or a phone, World War 3 erupts with opinions of each side being the machine guns, hurtful comments being the grenades.

Let’s look at the intentions on each side. The conservative view is that by allowing abortions you are literally committing murder. So, of course, conservative people want to stop abortion, they do it because they want to protect and love people. The more liberal side believes the unborn baby is not yet considered life and by allowing abortions you are giving women a choice to not have a baby in a bad situation in her life due to many circumstances. They want to protect and love women.

Both sides intentions are pure. They both have love and protection at the forefront of their movement. So why do we go on to brutally attack each other when both sides intentions are loving?

We are human beings and we all do what we can with the best information we have. I personally believe that an unborn child has a right to life and pro-choice would be allowing that child to have a choice if they live or die. But many of you will disagree with me, and rightly so, you believe that you are right and I am wrong due to the information you have been given and that is fine!

God calls us to love ALL our neighbours, not just those who agree with us. And if you believe in pro-choice then surely you would agree that it should be everyone’s choice to also oppose that if they so choose.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t fight for what we believe in. If you look into your heart and see that one side is right or wrong, then go your heart out. But think about why you are saying what you are saying when you ridicule and be so toxic to the opposing side in the so-called name of love.

Social Justice: What can YOU do?

SOCIAL JUSTICE_ WHAT CAN YOU DO_ (1).pngSocial justice is a word that gets thrown around a whole lot these days. People have this desire idea that our world is just. This fits peoples idea’s of the natural world order. It doesn’t seem right to us that someone who commits a crime should just be able to walk free, there is a desire that the person will face justice for what they have done. This translates over to greater society where issues in the social sphere seem to lack justice.

If you search up social justice on the internet, you see a whole lot of people holding up signs demanding justice in some form. Often these messages are targeted towards governments due to the belief that governments can and will fix all forms of injustice in our society. However, in our daily lives, we do not call the government to fix the small injustices in our own lives. If someone takes my lunch from the fridge and I can see them eating it and I will approach them about this ‘injustice’. This is the same for so many things, friends stand up for friends in times of need, parents ensure their child is safe from bullying, you go after the guy who stole your lunch, you refuse to eat a poorly cooked meal and the list goes on. However, when it comes to social justice where the injustice affects things like homelessness, many of us seem to believe that holding up signs and hoping the government does the work for us is the only way to uphold the justice. In truth, there are many ways for us to do this. Jesus himself called us to enact on the injustices we see around us, not by holding up signs, but by doing what we can for those around us. So, what can YOU do? There is often plenty that we can do, whether it be donating our time and/or money to organisations like St Vinnies or something as simple as talking to someone who maybe society has forgotten about. Jesus called us to do what we can and holding up a sign is great and sometimes that is what is needed, but by showing our faith in action towards those around us is really what Jesus calls us to do.

For anyone in grades 8 to 12, we are holding a social justice night on the 17th of August with the help of the St Vincent De Paul society (More information can be found in the Altitude Tab).

If God is so good, then why does _____ exist? Questions and Answers.

Atheists, Catholics, Christians, Buddhists, Muslims and many other religions seem to not have a lot in common most of the time. Many people like to throw many religions in the same basket with the comment “All Christians are basically the same cause they all go to church”, and while that statement holds some truth in it and it is also true that Jesus would want us to come together and identify as the same, many would argue that each and every religion and spirituality is quite different.

However, one question that I find being asked of people from all different walks of life, religions and spiritualities is the question “If God is so good, then why does ____ exist”. Adversaries of God will use this question to disprove the existence of such a being. People struggling with God will constantly ask themselves this question. People who have had family members die will ask themselves this question. It is in fact, a very good question. The blank can be filled with so many options, so… from a Catholic perspective and with help from resources such as YOUCAT, I will attempt to answer these as best as I can.

If God is so good, then why does suffering exist?

This question here is one of the most asked questions of the Catholic church. Lex Luthor from Superman brings up a good point. If you say God is all powerful and all good, how can suffering exist? Surely, you must accept that either, God is all good, but not all-powerful, therefore suffering can exist OR that God is all-powerful, however, not all good and refuses to take away the suffering. There is another alternative, however, and that is that God does not exist at all. “Checkmate God believers!” atheists would say at this point. To answer this I would pose the dark room theory. If a room is pitch black you cannot see it or what is in it. However, if you turn a light on, you reveal the room, begging the question, does darkness really exist, or is it simply the lack of light that exists. No amount of darkness can take away the light, but a small amount of light can conquer the darkness. This is quite similar to suffering. The lack of good in this world causes suffering, so suffering in itself is just a lack of a good thing. God made a good thing, and when there is a lack of this good thing, suffering rears its ugly head. So suffering only exists in the sense that a lack of good can exist. The idea that God sends suffering down upon us, is one that is so wrong. God conquered death, the ultimate suffering and saved us from it. However, due to free will and the lack of good that can exist, suffering can exist.

If God is so good, then why did Queensland lose the state of origin?

Probably the second most asked question that I have come across. This is quite similar to the suffering question as many had to suffer during this event, however, while suffering can exist through the lack of good, while God did not create it, God urges us to learn through our suffering. Through the state of origin, we can learn humility, sportsmanship and give everyone a fair go. The Maroons will learn from their mistakes and come out swinging next year.

If God is so good, then why does death exist?

For those who have lost a family member, this is a question that is asked frequently. While no one likes it I tend to answer this by using the example of a birthday party. Birthday parties are so fun, wouldn’t it be great if they lasted forever? On the surface yes, but underneath, perhaps not. Every moment at the party is a special one, the blowing of the candles, the eating of the cake, the fun with friends, those funny things that happen that no one plans. Each and every moment is special and the reason why is bittersweet. It is special because it won’t happen again. The fact that the party only lasts a short amount of time, gives it an urgency and a sense that it is special. If the party went on forever, moments wouldn’t be special or meaningful, because they would just happen again eventually. At the end of the party, we go home and this is like life, at the end of it we go home, to heaven. Am I saying that God wants us to die? No, most certainly not, God mourns the death of every single person on this earth, he gave us the gift of life and is sad to see it pass. But just like a birthday party, life must pass, it makes life special and at the end of it we go home, into the loving embrace of the lord. So eat that cake, see that friend you said you would catch up with, God didn’t give you the gift of life to be sad about the prospect of it being taken away from you.

PART 2 Coming soon!

Science Vs God?

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In centuries past, the Church used to be at the forefront of explaining why things are the way we are. Why does it rain? Because God makes it so. How did the earth come to be? Because God created it. The answers to these questions in the past used to be considered the answers that were the truth. However, as time has progressed and science has moved forward, science has begun to answer questions that previously only the church had answers for.

It has reached a point now in our society where many feel that God and the church are at odds with science, which has often lead to many in the church questioning their beliefs. If the Church is wrong about the creation of the earth, then what else is wrong with it? This common question can lead to a slippery slope and can point someone to question everything about their faith. Many people such as Jerry A. Coyne would say that the faith and science are very much at odds with each other. In Coyne book, Faith Vs Fact, he argues that science and religion incompatible and to argue for a bipartisanship is merely unrealistic and should not and can not be done. However, what people like Coyne fail to cover is that the church is not around to teach us about facts of life like how we came to be, it is around to teach us about love, something which science can only determine in a quantifiable sense, where the church can give us examples to live by.

When Galileo was around in the 17th century, it is well known and documented that the Catholic church persecuted Galileo for his view that the sun was at the centre of our galaxy and not the earth. Many people use this to point out that the Catholic church is at odds with science. However, this is actually incorrect. While this model did interfere with Catholic teaching at the time which suggested earth was at the centre, the rest of the scientific community at the time also condemned Galileo for being incorrect. Years after, the scientific community accepted Galileos view and so did the church.

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We jump forward to our time now, where we have anti-catholics hounding the Church and asking questions about, The great flood, the creation story, Adam and Eve and much, much more and asking for evidence. In truth, most people within the Catholic Church and its leaders agree that the big bang probably happened, that the earth is far older than the bible would suggest and that some stories like the great flood may have not happened.

In the past, it seemed like the job of the Catholic Church to provide us with the answers that science couldn’t, however now that science is coming along a lot faster than the Catholic Church, to many, the Catholic Church seems to have lost its purpose. In reality, the Catholic Church will never lose its primary objective which is to teach us about the greatest love story of all time which is the one between God and us.

Science has a lot to say about love. It can tell us what chemicals in our brain cause us to ‘love’ an activity or to feel ‘love’ towards someone. It can tell us that people with high levels of tolerance and people who talk about their relationship are more likely to stay together in a relationship. However, it cant tell us why we fall in love with some people, and to be honest neither can the church. However, what the church can say to us about love is that our God loves us so much that he sent himself down to earth in the form of Jesus, to live, suffer and die as we all did, for us.

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In the 18th century, St Paul of the Cross was sitting in mass and in a moment, he realised something, Jesus Christ died for him, yes he died for everyone, but Paul realised he was loved so much by Jesus and God that he died for him. Nowadays, the church tells us a similar message. The Church can often seem like buzzkills, telling what we can and cannot do and sometimes, while flawed, does its best to encourage us to live our lives following Jesus, the embodiment of love.

So, Science Vs God? No, God gave us wonderful and brilliant minds to discover the world that he had a hand in making. God wants us to see all the amazing things this universe has to offer, and science is a big part of that. However, let us not forget, that while science is fantastic and can discover things such as the creation of the universe, only we can find love and who better to follow than Jesus, who loves us all more than we can imagine.

 

Into the Flame – On The Brightside – What is Suffering?

A Recap from our night at Vivo, if you want part 2 live (Why do we suffer?) come along to our next night at Vivo.

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We go through life and we find that we get told “The grass will be greener on the other side” but where is this magical other side or brightside? I think all of us at some point have been through a period in our lives where we struggle, that point might be now, it might be later, who knows but it is inevitable that at some point we have to go through suffering. I’m going to show you an interview of a man who has suffered a lot in his life. He is the lead singer from Gang of Youths, also, please note that there is a bit of swearing so if you have an issue with it, feel free to just read the run down.

(For those who want the link it is here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGMypR-fvkk)

The Run down: David Le’aupepe is a man who has been through a lot of suffering. He struggled a lot with alcohol, suicide and a failed marriage. He started writing music originally for his wife who was very sick with cancer. He also put his music online and someone found him, making the band a reality. Dave came to a point when his marriage failed and he lost “The Want” (The want to do anything, the want to live) and he was going to commit suicide, but he got a call from his manager who attributes to saving his life who then found him and talked him out of it. He then went into rehab where he met a women who told him “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem” which he took as, “My life is a temporary problem” which he took a lot of hope in as he thought his life was something to be improved upon. Dave finishes off by describing his career as falling down hard but as he started to get back up, everyone started clapping. pexels-photo-66100

Suffering is something that we humans have to go through, all of us will have to endure suffering during our lives, no matter what we do. Dave, knew this better than most. He was going to commit suicide, he lost his faith, he had alcohol issues. He really was on the end of his rope. Something I wanted to come back to from the video, was when Dave said “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem”.  The reason I come back to that specifically, is because often times, when we are suffering we don’t realize it is a temporary issue. We can make silly decisions that effect our long term when in reality there are far better solutions. Now, due to the size of this issue, we are not going to be able to cover the idea of suffering in its entirety in one session so we are going back to the basics, what is suffering?

Lets start with what is suffering. We all know what suffering is, we all knows there is different degrees of suffering. If someone is slightly uncomfortable right now in their chair, that can be regarded as a form of suffering. However, if someone just lost a parent yesterday, that is also a form of suffering.

So coming back to it, we all know what suffering is, but how do we quantify it. If a child loses their favourite toy and I accidently drop my burrito as I walk home, who suffers more? I guess you can take in factors like, how long has the child had that toy for, was it and expensive toy OR Was I really hungry, how much do I like burritos. Its hard to compare these things.

Let’s switch it to something more serious. If I lose my father, and so does (point out Ash) Ash, who suffers more? We both have good relationships with our fathers and it would be very hard to see who suffers more. In reality, no one should do this, no one says, oh I suffer more because ect ect. So how can we determine how much we are suffering and how can we express this to others?

What I want you to do, when you can, is to think of a story, a song, a video or something along these lines that expresses your version of suffering to the rest of us. Whether you want the video to relate to a specific experience you had regarding how you suffered, or if you want to find something that relates to your idea of suffering as a whole. Its completely up to you! Suffering is something that is so personal, which means what you find may be completely different to me or anyone else. There is no wrong or right answers, just as long as what you find be a story that relates to you!

The reason I ask you to do this, is to better understand your own suffering. It is a limited way in which we can quantify it enough so we have points of reference in regards to understanding our own suffering. When we suffer, we instantly want to escape that, its a survival instinct. Sometimes this is the right thing to do, if we are being attacked, we want to run away, this is what we should do! However, if we are suffering because of some emotional issue, sometimes the healthiest thing to do is to meet it head on and combat it. But before we combat it, it might be a good idea for us to understand what we are up against. We do this because maybe its an issue we cant face on our own, we might need outside help, but either way, we should try to understand it as well as we can.

I wanna go back to Dave, the lead singer for Gang Of Youths. After all he has been through, he wrote a song about life and suffering and I want to share with you the song and in particular the end of the song.

Say yes to sun! Say yes to pain!
Say yes to sticking with a city through a thousand days of rain!
Say yes to grace! Say no to spite!
Say yes to this! Say yes to you!
Say yes to me! Say yes to love!
Say yes to life!
Say, say yes to life!

(For those who want to listen to the song in its entireity, here is the link -https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wq7dkqGJKGE – Please note that there is swearing in the song)

Now the reason I picked that song was because he talks about all the hard things he has to go through. We all need to go through hard things in life, it is unfortunately a fundamental fact of life. In life we say yes to Love and no to spite, but in doing this we have to say yes to sticking with a city through a thousand day of rain. Because in the end if we say yes to life we are also unfortunately saying yes to pain.

Thanks to everyone who came and shared so powerfully, great stuff!  I would also like to thank Youcat as well as the formation I received from the Passionist Youth Retreat Team which helped me crack open this big question.

 

Into the flame: Who are we?

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Who are we? Its a question that many of us are constantly asking ourselves. One that I attempted to answer.

To help me answer this, I used Wing$ by Macklemore (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gAg3uMlNyHA) to help explain why we sometimes lose track of who we are. His song talks about how as a kid he was obsessed with his Nike shoes and he identifies with them so much that the shoes became a core part of his personality. “Air Max’s were next, that air bubble, that mesh, the box, the smell, the stuffing, the tread, in school I was so cool”, he needed his shoes to fit in but that’s where is all begins, because by changing who we are to fit in, who do we become?

When I was younger I identified with my body weight, who was I, I asked myself, I was the fat kid who tried to be funny to fit in. I had a friend who was really good at football, who was he I asked myself, a really good footballer. In reality, we are so much more than how good we are at a sport or how much we weigh. At our very core of who we are, we are loved and we are beautiful. God tells us that we are more than we appear, we are complicated beings with minds more advanced than any other known creature. How could being a footballer define who we are?

In this day and age, we can get so caught up with materialistic things like shoes, phones and ads on TV telling us that we need to lose weight to be better people. We soak all this up and think that the person we are is all about the things we have or dont have. We want to thin, we want to be rich, we want to be better, but how? If who we are is poor, and who we want to be is rich, how do we determine our self worth if we cant be rich? God tells us that we are more than this, at our very core, it does not matter whether we are rich or poor, because fundamentally we are beautiful and we are loved.

When God makes it rain, something green is going to grow. God has created every single one of us to be an amazing human being however, he has also given us the freewill to do what we want with his amazing gift. Before we do anything at all, we are beautiful from God and we are loved unconditionally by God.

When a window gets foggy, it’s hard to see through. That is sometimes why we find it hard to see the beauty within ourselves. Things like shoes, phones, money, body issues and plenty more can get in the way of us seeing how beautiful we are. We are all amazing people, capable of doing a billion different fantastic things and we have been given this wonderful gift from God that allows us to live amazing lives. Why should we waste it being concerned about things that don’t really matter? So..who are we? We are loved and we are beautiful, don’t let a pair of shoes hold you back from realizing that.

Into the Flame: Miracles

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When we look at the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000, we think, wow, that was amazing! But how did he do this? Did he physically create more loaves and fish? Did he open the hearts of the 5,000 people to share what food they carried on them? In truth, it doesn’t really matter, either way, Jesus through some miracle was able to feed 5,000 people, starting with only enough loaves and fish to feed a small boy.

But what does this mean for our modern day community? When I forget my lunch, is Jesus going to spawn more than enough loaves and fish around me so I can eat? Probably, not. My best bet would be to use that experience as learning so the next time I come into my office, I can remember to bring lunch. Jesus is telling us something much deeper.

Firstly, Jesus loved those around him at the time, he conveys this by giving them food. At the end, when everyone has eaten, there was much food left over. This is symbolic of Gods love for us, there will always be enough to go around.

Another way of looking at it, is like viewing us humans as house guests. When we go over to someones house, we are offered food and drink while we stay. When food and drink is no longer being offered to us and we feel hungry, it is a sign that it is time to leave. We are all living in Gods house and God never wants us to leave, so he will continually feed us.

While there may be times where we do feel like Gods love is finite and he is not feeding us, it is important to remember that God is with us all the way. In our suffering, we can often feel like God has abandoned us, like he has kicked us out of his house. In truth, God knows suffering just like the rest of us, we can see that by looking at the cross that Jesus was on. In reality, we have not been kicked from Gods house, we left and that could be for many reasons. But in turn, it doesn’t matter why we left, God will always be calling us back into his home, for us to eat at his table.

Simple Answers for Complicated Questions (With help from YOUCAT and other religious scripture).

This post is for people who may not be familiar with Catholic teachings and ideas, if you want real in-depth answers, read YOUCAT or a similar text. These are MY interpretations and readings, this IS NOT direct from the Catholic church. So.. These are my answers to the questions I have been asked about most in my time within the Church.

Who is God?

I don’t know, but I’m sure it isn’t a he or a she or even a who. God is a being of the unknown that we as humans can’t even conceptualize.

Why do people call God a he then and he is described as father in the bible?

I think its because it just makes it easier for us to understand God. I for one, call God “he” and Father, but I think it would be perfectly reasonable to call God a mother or protector if you so pleased.

What is heaven?

Heaven at its simplest is becoming one with love and therefore becoming one with God. It is an everlasting moment of love and joy.

What is hell?

Pretty much the opposite to heaven. While it has been described to us as a place full of fire and the devil laughing his evil laugh, it can be described as apart from God and therefore without love.

Hang on! If God is so good and he loves me, why does hell exist? Why do bad things even exist if he created the world?

Good point! I find it best to look at who we are as people to answer this question. We are made with the ability to choose. We can choose the right thing and the wrong thing. This fundamental fact gives us true freedom in the eyes of God. However, since we can choose what we want, we can make decisions that hurt those around us. This idea of freewill is explained well by C.S Lewis if you want to do further reading. If we could only choose the right thing, then we wouldn’t have conscience and freedom.

Going back to the idea of hell, which is without love or without God, if someone chooses to be without these things, they can go to hell, ultimately coming back to the idea of freewill.

Alright, I get freedom, but what about children who die at childbirth or cancer? I’ve heard God tests us, but that just causes pain!

God does test us, but sometimes we go through things in our life that really do cause pain. You can go back to the idea that true happiness cannot exist without true sadness but that never helps me understand. What I find helpful to realize is that we can see that God didn’t necessarily create suffering, it is simply just part of the human condition. God himself suffered as we do, we he came down to earth in the form of Jesus. God is able to be with us while we suffer and we can pray for his assistance.

How do magnets work?

Honestly have no clue, there is no explanation for it, therefore I am 100% certain it is magic.

Why does the Church hate Homosexuals?

It doesn’t, the Church calls each and every one of us to love each other.

Oi, you are doing that tricky thing were you say God calls us to love each other and you are avoiding the question! The Church was adamant on the plebiscite that Homosexual people can’t marry!

OK, you got me. Truth is, the best way I can answer your question without going down a huge rabbit hole, is by once again saying the Church calls each and every one of us to love each other.

Why does the Church need to exist, cant I just believe in and love Jesus?

True, but the Church has 2000 years of knowledge that could help you out in loving Jesus to the best of your ability.

Do you believe that God put dinosaur bones in the ground to test your faith?

No.

Are you a flat earther?

No.

Is it true that Catholics have sacrifice a cow every time they sin?

No…..Mate, where are you getting your information from?

Are you ashamed of the whole Church scandal?

Yes. There is no denying it, what happened was truly and utterly disgusting.

What is the Church doing to fix the situation?

So, so, so much. The Church has been busy implementing safeguarding policies to make sure that the risk is reduced as much as humanly possible

So was the Church wrong? Does this mean it could be wrong with other things?

Yes and yes. The Church is not God, it is an institution that is man made to serve God. Because God created man with freewill, man can sin, therefore an institution of man can be wrong. The Church does its best to be right and serve God to the best of its ability, however, people in the church let it down sometimes.

Is the Church planning on doing another Crusade?

Yeah actually I’m glad you asked. I’m just about to start another Crusade to take over the holy land, I’ve built a wooden tall ship myself you just need to bring your own: Sword, Armor, Bow and holy relic. For more information call 1333 MYCRUSADE.

Why is the Church so slow?

Maybe, you are too fast. The Church has been around for a very long time and it has survived for a long time. When the Church makes a decision, it wants to make sure it is right. The max speed of a Cheetah is about 115 km/h and the max speed of a Giant Tortoise is about 8 km/h (Very rare case), however Cheetah’s live for about 8 years and the Giant Tortoise is known to exceed the age of 150. The Church wasn’t made to move quickly, it was made to last. Think of the Church as something solid you can hold onto in these fickle times.

Why does the Church not respect a women’s right to choose? 

Again a very good point. This is a very touchy subject and from a certain point of view, the Church does seem to be quite wrong. Many people who are against abortions within the Church go about it in the wrong way, so I will do my best to explain it as respectfully as I can.

Its not that the Church doesn’t respect a women’s right to choose, its more like the Church believes that human life starts at conception and the Church wants to protect all human life. While many people say that it isn’t human till it comes out, or there is a heart beat, or after a few months, the Church just believes that it is human earlier than most others do. From the Church’s and society’s point of view, killing a human is murder. The Church just wants to protect ALL human beings, not just those who can speak for themselves.

The Church also understands that sometimes there are other issues, such as risks to a woman’s life if a birth were to happen. However, for most of these, they are outlying cases which are very, very rare where exceptions can (not always) be made.

If magnets work with magic, how do microwaves work?

The same magic.

Am I allowed to drink alcohol?

As long as you are over 18, then drinking in Australia is permitted.

No, I mean will God hate me if I drink alcohol?

Not at all! Jesus often shared a drink with his buddies.

I swear I’ve heard Catholics are not allowed to drink alcohol. Are you lying just to seem normal?

Look, we can discuss it over a pint if you really wish. I love a beer with my mates. You are probably thinking of the 7th Day Adventists, not the Catholics.

Can I bet and play games of chance?

Risking ones livelihood dues to games of chance is considered immoral and dangerous, but short answer is yes, as long as you are not reckless with your betting.

Will God hate me if I do ______?

In the olden times, it was often said God will hate you if you do this or that. Nowadays, we have come to understand that God’s loves for us is unfaltering and unconditional. So when you sin, you are actually moving away from God and because God loves us so much and wants to be close to us, he hates that there is something between you. God hates your sin and that there is distance between him and you. God loves you so much and wants to be as close as he can to you and the sin is getting in the way, and that is what he hates.

How do I fix sin?

You say sorry. You can go to confession or pray to God.

What is praying? How do I do it?

There is no one way to pray. Praying at its simplest is worship and praise to God. Here is a list of ways to pray:

  • Sitting down with your hands pressed together (like at the end of a clap)
  • Kneeling down and making your hands touch
  • Talking to God in your head
  • Talking to God out loud
  • Saying thanks to who ever built this fricken awesome universe
  • Singing
  • Dancing
  • Listening to music
  • Meditating
  • Going to Church
  • Painting

There’s so many ways to pray. Find the right one for you.

Why is Church so boring?

This a good one! To be perfectly honest, Church on paper is boring. If you don’t understand the spirituality and meaning behind it, Church would seem to be a waste of time. Ultimately, Church isn’t supposed to be fun, its supposed to be a time of praise and worship. While some would argue that you can praise God without Church, mass itself is something that has been celebrated for 2000 years. The breaking of bread at mass is symbolic of what Jesus did for us and what he did with his disciples.

I think the best way to answer your question is to give you another example. I’m a psychology student who really enjoys my lectures, but if I go to my best mates class, who is an engineering student, I find it really boring. Not because engineering itself is inherently boring or because I’m dumb, but because I simply don’t understand it.

Why should I get involved with the Church?

I asked myself the same question about 4 years ago. What does the church have to offer you? The Church at points can be seen to be a massive killjoy but I have learned over time that the Church is fact is the opposite of a killjoy. The Church wants to introduce God and Jesus into our lives, which are the embodiment’s of love and joy. I have found that after coming into the Church and experiencing what it has to offer, I have been happier than I have ever been.

By Church, I don’t mean just coming to Church on a Sunday, I mean going to events such as youth groups. The people at these events were simply amazing and helped me realize that I am a good person and that I can be happy with myself.

If I wanted to get involved with a youth group or something similar, how would I do that?

Please send me a message through this website!

 

There are many things I have missed, but many require a much bigger explanation such as, why doesn’t the Church sell all it has to help the poor. I would encourage you to have a discussion with someone about it, because at its heart, the Church is good and wants the best for everyone, even if we don’t all see it that way.

 

 

The Shallows

Deeper water calls us on, but first, we must wade through the shallows. The upcoming night of exploration of deeper water will be looked at the next Vivo, which is to be held this upcoming Wednesday (The 21st of March). With a new group coming together, it will all be about dipping our toes into the water and getting to know the people around us.

In Vivo this week we will be looking at the story of Jairus’ daughter and the women who touched Jesus’ cloak. We are told by Jesus that the woman was saved, not because she touched Jesus, but because of her faith.

Can faith heal people? This is one of the things we will be looking at in Vivo, to see if the power of how has real power. We will also be getting to know the people around us and how the people in our wider lives affect ourselves and our spirituality.

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Deeper Water!

aerial-top-down-view-of-a-woman-swimming-underwater-in-a-deeper-water-with-white-sand-making-the-color-of-water-darker_sxfvpdmeex_thumbnail-full06.pngDEEPER WATER is calling us on! This month at VIVO we are exploring the theme of deeper water. Deeper water is something that is frightening to us all, it is full of strange creatures that exist at unknown depths. In life we often stick to the shallows, only venturing at a comfortable waist deep level before going back to shore.

Looking out to the ocean is an eye-opening experience. We see a vastness that is often difficult to attain elsewhere. It extends to the end of our vision, yet when we go out, we refuse to go any deeper than a surface level.

While frightening, we are diving into the deep and finding the hidden treasures that lay within us. We often look at ourselves and others at a surface level, only skimming the surface of who we really are. 95% of the world’s oceans are unexplored, diving deep and discovering what is really down there is a daunting task. However, part of the human condition is that we are curious. Every day, people are going deeper and deeper into our oceans, so why are we not searching deeper and deeper into who we are as people?

Just like the ocean calls us to go deeper into her depths, God calls us to explore ourselves and our spirituality deeper. Humans are just like the ocean. There is a lot to see at surface value, what color skin we have, our preferred clothing style, how we do our hair in the morning, but these things only show how we look and may only hint at how we really are underneath. Going deeper into our spirituality and who we are, allows us to really discover who we are and what we really believe.

So…Will you take the dive this month? Even if you don’t come to VIVO, who are you really? You are more than a body of water that stretches as far as the eye can see, you are deeper than you could possibly imagine with unknown depths hiding exciting treasures that are just waiting for you to discover. All it takes is for you to make the dive into the unknown depths, who knows what awaits you?

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