Saturday, October 25, 2008

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Multifaceted… to begin with anger

By Benita TUPCHONG a friend at UWO

Don't you get it
That I'm angry for a reason
And it doesn't just blow away like autumn leaves through the season
It's not something simple that you can just dismiss
And say, you'll make it better with a simple kiss
As a friend or foe
There's something you should know
That all my rants and the foundation of my stance
Are not a mere emotive wave that'll "come and go"
When you wholeheartedly believe in the goodness of a cause
It's because you've taken many moments to ponder in pause
There's definitely logic that's in tune with your brain
And the voice inside is so crisp it nearly drives you insane
I'm disappointed more than shocked
That you'd say something as such
To belittle a movement of justice
Because it's something of which you don't think much
Maybe the reason why you find it illegitimate
Is that you've unwittingly been caught up by the system
And as a result you've closed your mind
To no longer desire to listen
I almost want to turn my back to you
When you tell me things so presumptuous
As if you'd mastered the claims of this revolution
From a glimpse at a poster or a quick flick of the head over your shoulder
Well as much as we're inclined to make prejudgements
And define our surroundings by the fast images we see
When it comes to social issues
It's not black-and-white, or just some simple hierarchy
I know people say, follow your instincts
Hell, I do that sometimes myself
But instincts are, in fact, a manifestation
Of your underlying ideas of personal health
Just think for a second
About how much our strongholds guard us in
It's certainly okay to feel head-on about things
But when new chances or information is presented before us
You have to be conscious of the mind-filter you use to let that in
Multifaceted… to begin with anger
To truly embrace concepts seemingly foreign
We sometimes need to let go
Take a few steps back and undo the clasp
On our mental map so fresh ideas can flow
And then of course it's the sifting and simmering
Until it's boiled over inside
Which is where you realize
The things you've internalized
Et voila, there's an inherent structure you'll come to know.
I am a feminist, but not a man-hater
I'm pretty socialist, but still value independent strength
I am an activist, but there are many things about this world I love
I'm sort of an idealist, but only because you have to dream in order to know what for and why you're fighting
I am an environmentalist, but I occasionally use a paper cup
I am a writer, but don't necessarily express the whole spectrum of thoughts
I am frank and talkative, but still don't always say much
I am, on paper, a contradiction; but that's an indication of how multifaceted people are. So what really counts is not here,
but the person you know for yourself.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Council - demasculated and impotent

In response to C1's letter below it is apparent that Council has chosen the route of no problem will end in harmony. I'm sure that their burying their head in the sand has been their strategy hoping that we will go away.

Not so. It is time again to ramp up the rhetoric until they meet us and those who have left at the table and make an honest effort to deal with their problems. The power that Frielink pushes council is less than palatable. Deacons and elders have, as I have been told, are demasculated and now impotent in the Frielink regime. Exeter CRC looks like a train wreck just waiting to happen and no one is watching the signals. Harry has molded this underlings like sheep to the slauther.

Any comments on elders or deacons??????


Council burying their promises with their talents

Posted comment.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The letter writer asks : " Why don't we hear from Council?"
It seems safe to say that a majority in council hopes this blog and discussion will disappear. Apparently it will not go away but we who are advocates for THE DISADVANTAGED ( which in Exeter CRC includes women) are looking for a decent , no name-calling, PUBLIC discussion. A presentation by a minister who believes men and women are equally gifted and are suitable for all offices in the church, whether ordained or not!
What happened to that promise given by Council a year ago at a congregational meeting. Is Council going back on that promise of equal representation and discussion of both pro and con women in office?
Let your yes be yes and your no , no........ total silence on Council's part is an insult to our belief and conviction! Not to mention breaking a promise on your part. Are you promise keepers or promise breakers?

It may be time to involve Classis, our attempts to communicate with Council have had no results or not even a response most of the time.
For shame!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Thanks for the Fuel

And thanks for the encouragement.
Council has, at least as recently as this spring used the office as a gateway to denouncing the role of women as equal partners in faith. They are much more subdued and generally like to make their pitch as a "this is what God mandates, it's not me you have issue with, it's God" type of argument. That is by any stretch a hard act to follow.
I have a litany (pun intended) of women that would do a wealth of service to God in a leadership role. I won't however speculate in the blog as this will muddy their waters for a later date. I would like to think that a regime change would do Exeter CRC well and that there will be little movement under the current totalitarian ministry of Harry Frielink. It was only in his "my way or the highway" style of church leadership that threw women out of the role as deacon. He in fact made it abundantly clear that women should have NO role in the church whether that be in the role of Sunday litany, deacon, elder or whatever he might perceive as being lorded over his head. The congregation was duped when he lied about his beliefs when first interviewed for the job and his hidden agenda to rid the church leadership of women was even more cleaverly buried. It worked Harry. You picked the right rural community to bring out the misogyny you have harboured for years.
So, let's discuss. The weather will be getting cold shortly. Not as cold as a women being nominated for office but cold non-the-less. It will be time to shimmy up to the computer and creating the balance and voice that women in Exeter will demand until a viable compromise is sought. Let's turn up the heat.

Fuel For The Fire

Hi Joan of Ark,

What you are doing on your blog is really really good. It means that you have not given up on the good fight. Could you answer me one thing...if you had to pick who should be on council at the Exeter CRC who would it be and why?

I am one of the ones that stand up for women in office but don't want a twenty minute speech from the elders of the Exeter CRC about the rights and wrongs in the church.

How many more families have to leave the church in order for the Council to change their ways about women in office?

Could your blog stir up the pot more with letters of what you think on your blog? - This is what I want to hear and so many women amoung us.

Why is it that the Exeter CRC asks for money for the budget less then other donations when at the end of the year they come up short and ask for more money from everyone to make up for it?

Can we openly discuss who and what council is doing? New ones have been installed and yet we don't hear much about them.

Thanks for starting up this blog again - because council almost thought they won.

Happy Thanksgiving, Believer of God

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Friday, October 3, 2008

Parallel Religions

Outspoken Muslim cleric Taj al-Din al-Hilali says the Bible “mandates” the wearing of the veil by Christian women.

Writing in a new book, Sheik Hilali, who lost his job as mufti of Australia after comparing scantily clad women to uncovered meat, argues that the Bible and the Koran make similar demands of a woman’s modesty.

Sheik Hilali, who remains the head of Australia’s largest mosque, in the southwestern Sydney suburb of Lakemba, says the purpose of the book is to show the commonalities of Islam with the Jewish and Christian faiths when it comes to women’s modesty and clothing.

In the soon to be published The Legitimacy of the Veil for Women of the Scripture - Evidence of the Veil in the Bible, the cleric points to references in the Old and New Testaments to women wearing a veil.

“Through this I hope to raise awareness and understanding and eliminate apprehensions and misunderstandings about the veil,” he writes.

The Anglican Bishop of South Sydney, Robert Forsyth, challenged Sheik Hilali’s comments about the veil being “mandated” in the Bible, saying they were misleading.

“The New Testament does call upon people to dress modestly,” he said. “But there is no understanding that women are commanded to wear the veil. But it is mandated that you should dress appropriately for your social context.”

Sheik Hilali also says the Virgin Mary is often depicted with a veil covering her head.

“The veil upholds the modesty and protects the dignity of women, whether Muslim or non-Muslim,” he writes. “Wearing the veil creates the most realistic similarity with the Virgin Mary, the mother of Christ.”

Sheik Hilali caused an uproar with a Ramadan sermon in 2006 in which he talked about immodestly dressed women being like “uncovered meat” and made remarks about Sydney’s notorious gang rapes.

He has used the book to hit back at criticisms of his comments, which were given during a lesson to Muslim men and women on theft and adultery, and which he says were misinterpreted with “ill-intent” and with the intention to “slander” him.

He has included an “explanatory statement” to clarify his position, saying that rape is a heinous crime and the perpetrator deserves the maximum punishment. He also says women in Australia, or any Western society, have absolute freedom to wear whatever they like.

“The Muslim has no right to impose the rules of his religion on others. My religious duty is to advise the Muslim woman to be modest and to wear the Islamic dress. It is her choice whether to comply or not.”

He said his comments about uncovered meat were drawn from an analogy used by the Arab writer Al-Rafii that uncovering flesh publicly may be degrading to the woman and may make her vulnerable to those with a diseased heart.

“Through these words I wanted to protect women from rapists who have lost their humanity, lost their minds and religion.

“Whilst I believe that the rapists are responsible for their crimes, I wanted to protect my daughters by encouraging them to adopt all available lawful means of protection,” he writes.

Sheik Hilali concedes that the uncovered meat example was not correct or appropriate for the Western mentality.

“I did not mean this analogy to denigrate immodestly dressed women; rather I meant to denigrate those men who set aside their humanity and turn into predators.”