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Having A Captain Cook At Fitzroy Gardens

A stroll in the green of Fitzroy Gardens alongside the city of Melbourne.

They apparently don’t reset their sundial for daylight saving. This was taken at 11.44.

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Tree Failure

One of my daughters is in Sydney this week.
She shared this photo with us today.
Every now and again you encounter a phrase that is entirely new to you.
I’ve never heard of ‘tree failure’ before.
Someone had to think it up.
Maybe it was a committee.
Perhaps someone had to sign off and approve it.
It’s hard to believe this is a one person product.

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On Being A Sad Good News Shepherd (via Connor Gwin at Mockingbird)

A recent suicide by a US pastor whose ongoing struggles with his mental health were part of his public ministry has produced a lot of commentary on the subject of ministry, chronic depression, and how sufferers can live with both.

Connor Gwin writes from the perspective of his own life dealing with both of these areas, and how the church can stray into two unhelpful directions, both of which marginalise a situation that is anything but marginal.

Often, the Church floats between two extremes when it comes to mental health. On one side you have the folks that believe that mental health is a purely spiritual matter; that depression is a sign of spiritual weakness and the solution is prayer. On the other side, you have people that believe that mental illness is a purely physical issue caused by improper brain function and cured through therapy and medicine.
What both sides share is a firm commitment to silence. If your mental illness is a spiritual problem, you will (most likely) not discuss it in church. If your mental illness is only a physical problem, you will talk with your therapist but not your faith community.
What we are left with is a church that never speaks of mental illness. The problem is that mental illness affects everyone in our churches, including our pastors.

The deeper question Gwin wants to interact with is whether there is a place in pastoral ministry for those who suffer.

The mental health of the pastor can make or break a church when the pastor is the focus of the church, not Christ. Too often pastors are seen as ‚Äúprofessional Christians‚ÄĚ or moral exemplars that set the bar for the congregation.
Of course, there is some truth to this. A pastor should be a Christian on the path, but the thing about being on the Christian path is that you will stumble. You will fall into sin. You will miss the mark. You will be selfish and make bad choices. You will not have it all together. This is all true of pastors as well.
Should people with mental illness be disqualified from ministry? Perhaps some should, but this question raises the deeper question:
Who is qualified for ministry?
If scripture is our guide, we see that God has a special way of using the most broken for His purposes.

Read the rest of the post at Mockingbird.

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Gene Kelly On Rollerskates

If you didn’t know better you might think the sight of Gene Kelly on rollerskates in Xanadu was just a sad and desperate cashing in on a fad like roller-disco.
But Kelly danced in roller skates decades before in the movie It’s Always Fair Weather.
It’s not one of his better known performances.
But it is better that Xanadu.

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Building Suspense – The Birds

The Birds is both a continuation and a departure for Alfred Hitchcock.
A continuation because danger and suspense abound.
A departure because this time there is no villain to either discover or await their discovery.
The lack of motivation for the arising threat multiplies the sense of foreboding and hopelessness.
Probably not best viewed during swooping season.
Memorably, suspense is built in a schoolyard playground with the voices of children singing in the background as Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren’s first role) waits for class to finish.

The original Angry Birds movie.

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Far Side Bank Of Jordan by Alison Krauss and The Cox Family

Far Side Bank Of Jordan is a sweet little song of future reunion by Alison Krauss and The Cox Family from I Know Who Holds Tomorrow.

As a bonus here’s a rendition from Johnny Cash and June Carter.

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All The Time Ya Spend Trying To Get Back What’s Been Took From Ya, More Is Going Out The Door ( No Country For Old Men)

No Country For All Men is a disquieting film from the Coen Brothers that, by all accounts, is faithful to its roots in Cormac McCarthy’s novel.
Tommy Lee Jones plays Ed Tom Bell, a lawman who comes to comes to a point in life where enough is enough, but he is sticking at the point of transition.
He visits Ellis, his uncle, also a lawman, but one who was crippled in the line of duty.

Ed Tom Bell : That man that shot you died in prison.
Ellis : Angola. Yeah…
Ed Tom Bell : What you’d done he had been released?
Ellis : Oh, I dunno. Nothing. Wouldn’t be no point in it.
Ed Tom Bell : I’m kindly surprised to hear you say that.
Ellis : Well all the time ya spend trying to get back what’s been took from ya, more is going out the door. After a while you just have to try to get a tourniquet on it.


Ellis : You can’t stop what’s comin’, it ain’t all waitin’ on you… That’s vanity.