Category Archives: Ethical Treats

Missionary Positions – Round Two

Last night (1 December 2016) I treated myself to supper at the café in town. Richard had to go to Québec for a family matter, so I have been left again on my own.

I ordered soup with soy dumplings; interesting taste, but not something I would keep on my Favourite Food list. Whilst eating my soup I overheard two young women (mid-twenties?) discussing the power of the Lord. In Waldheim, that is not unusual. The conversation was loud, emotional, yet 110% positive, something that is also not unusual for Waldheim.

I had a shitty day yesterday, and honestly, the part of the conversation I heard last night made we ANGRY. One of the young girls, after having a massive Jesus moment (the breakdown happen in Laird, but Waldheim MB is her home church), declared she will be going on a worldwide Bible study. Basically, there is a program that lets participants learn about the places of the Bible in real time: Peter wrote a letter to the Corinthians, you can go to Corinth, Greece (it still exists). Jerusalem, Turkey, Ephesus (which, technically, is in Turkey) and the whatnot. Not knowing who this opportunity is through, I found a site offering the same travel experience: Bible Land Tours.

The squeaks of delight from the young lady geared up to go and her friend made me sense something was not right.

Funding for the trip. Yes, that is what I was thinking in the back of my cryptic crossword mind. It brought to mind a pamphlet Richard brought home this past Sunday. One of the locals is going on a mission trip to someplace that is home to some strange people (unbelievers, I think). As per the ritual, it began with an introduction of this young person’s lineage, the moment of blessed realisation, the plan, then ended off with the plea for spiritual and financial help.

The missionaries from Richard’s church all have the drive, but not so much the money. Richard, like this Sunday, refused to even consider giving money to this young man. “Who’s going to help us pay for the brakes on the car? The people at church?” We did not have to answer that. I bring this up every time this subject comes up, but the goodly church folk don’t get it, or don’t care. In fact, when the Missions Conference is held in the Town of Waldheim, Richard does not to go to church on those Sundays, out of pure protestation.

The group this chap is with has a “training” centre in Jamaica: YWAMDP. If you a choice between learning how to steer people to the Lord in a makeshift meeting hall on 20th Street, Saskatoon or a seaside hut in Jamaica, the choice is an easy one, especially when you are twenty. Do not get me wrong, there are young people willing to dispose of their selfishness and replace it with self-fullness through Christ, no doubt.

Not knowing the status or the purpose of this young man’s trip does not change the fact that asking for money in such a way undermines the purpose if the Great Commission:

Mark 6: 7-12

And he called his twelve disciples together and began sending them out two by two, giving them authority to cast out evil[a] spirits. He told them to take nothing for their journey except a walking stick—no food, no traveller’s bag, no money.[b] He allowed them to wear sandals but not to take a change of clothes. 10 “Wherever you go,” he said, “stay in the same house until you leave town. 11 But if any place refuses to welcome you or listen to you, shake its dust from your feet as you leave to show that you have abandoned those people to their fate.” 12 So the disciples went out, telling everyone they met to repent of their sins and turn to God. (Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.)

Oh, you did not know this is part of the plan, did you? I called up the wrong quote. Well, Matthew was not the only one talking about letting it all go to spread the glory of the Lord.

Okay, this is 2016 and a person cannot enter a country willy-nilly and all that. Proper documents are needed, shots are required, language lessons may be necessary, and yes, money is now needed to get anywhere. I understand. A former co-worker quit his job and one Sunday spoke at Richard’s church outlining the monthly needs to keep his mission plan running and the amount of funds needed to support him, his wife and six children. Richard walked out. Though I was still attending church at this time, I did not go because the whole cast of MMFI were there to show support. I would have needed good dope to attend, just to kill the need to tell my former boss to f-off.

But, I digress.

You see, there are just too many missionaries. How many souls does God really need? How many points does a denomination get for each person “saved”? From my experience, letting someone know about God and Jesus through conversation can be enough to light a fire. I know there are groups in out local areas that are mission minded, Richard and I give graciously. You know I am no longer part of the Christian group, but money given from Richard comes from his pocket, money we could use to fix our house and fix our car. Local missionaries don’t seem to respect this.

Sorry young lady, I know you will be putting your plan through the churches in Waldheim and Laird, but guess what, you’re going to have to make due with help from others.

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Filed under Ethical Treats, Fretting Muchly, Progressive Christianity, Vacation

I Am Looking

Good day!

I have spent the last week getting our yard to finally look like a yard. Richard and I will be spending the May long weekend with my parents, but Mum and I will be doing some garden work – which she found out about by reading this. I need to pick up some seeds if I plan on growing anything, I think. I should not be putting my mum to work on what is to be a family visit, however, I do not get to spend as time with her as I did when I lived in Regina. Plus, I would like to get my garden started soon.

After mowing the lawn, which was done in two parts, I felt horrible. On Saturday I finished planting the last four juniper plants we have decided to make our back fence. We chose not to share a wooden version with Neighbor / Co-worker, as the cost was mostly beyond our scope, and if there is problem with it, I know there will be a bit of a grumble match to see who fixes it. On a side note: the sons in that house are very good kids, as Richard told me. He works with them in the youth group at his church. Too bad that kindness has not transferred to the dad.

Enough about that.

After coming home on Saturday from the garden place, I saw the lawn covered in dandelions. Every morning I feel a dread of the yard covered with these yellow weeds, and even more seeing the spread over the property line into the neighbour’s yard. Last year we tried sprays, pulling, and mowing, but to no avail. As I walked with my wares to the back, I noticed two bees hovering over a clump of the yellow beasts. I stared for a bit, then went on to the back. Three more. One seated casually on one of the already-planted junipers. Six altogether.

Six bees using my space for doing what they do best. Awe and some!!!  I did eventually have to mow the dandelions, as our grass was getting a bit unsightly. In all honesty, I would not mind setting a patch to be left on its own. My old garden space does get away every now and then, but I am compelled to trim it down so it does not become an eyesore. Maybe I can plant some hardy flowers to help take care of the weeds. Leaving a part go back to nature will help the with the bees. Mind you, the deer and the other outdoor animals may like the stuff here as well, but some of the people living on the acreages just down from us leave bales of hay for the deer and moose during the winter. I don’t want to draw the animals in, however, it is going to happen regardless.

During the first mowing session I happened to glance at the yard across the alley. Raised boxes, charted spaces and a woman hoeing a straight line made me sad. I am behind on the planting. Why does this bother me? Sure her stuff may survive, but it does not make me a failure. I do not wish for a bad crop, as the work and money gone into her plots are still worth every little bit.

My mother is bringing a tree and a pumpkin plant. I need to get my big bucket ready to take the pumpkin in. I have a few squash seeds to put in the bucket as well. Radishes, carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, beans, and very sore body parts are on the order for this year’s gardening experience.

Hey! Dandelions make good wine, apparently.

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Filed under Ethical Treats, Foodie Faves, Gardening Thyme

Let’s Teach Wendalynn To Be Nicer

HAY!
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And a goat. Technically those are shavings, but what the hey.

I was once fooled into sharing a post like this on Facebook:

I now feel like posting this as my sarcastic response:

When I was new to the social media thing (Facebook and Twitter), I was pretty naïve. Naïve enough to post stories proven later to be written by aliens. I will say that I do now check on things that seem a bit eekie to me. I have become a doubter, which has saved me embarrassment and loss of respect. I am sure I have lost respect of others posting the mythbusta links to those who love to boast about a Prime Minister who refuses to not sell milk products to kids deathly allergic to Star Wars.

Though I am a member of the WordPress Congregation, I do not quote its scripture as fact. Just like my posts, a great number are opinions and conjectures. I repost posts as a way of communicating, not as a way to prove or disprove a point. I have a tendency to go to a number of news sources to find “proof” (and that in itself is a loaded word) of a story. Oh, the news cannot be trusted. Oh, the news is too left-wing. Oh, the news is too right-handed. Oh and oh.

As mentioned, I have posted some pretty insane things, and will probably do again. I have become that person you may dislike – the prover-wronger. I hate being that person, but then I cannot stand this:

“Due to the fact that Facebook has chosen to involve software that will allow the theft of my personal information, I state: at this date of January 4, 2015, in response to the new guidelines of Facebook, pursuant to articles L.111, 112 and 113 of the code of intellectual property, I declare that my rights are attached to all my personal data drawings, paintings, photos, video, texts etc. published on my profile and my page. For commercial use of the foregoing my written consent is required at all times.

Those who read this text can do a copy/paste on their Facebook wall. This will allow them to place themselves under the protection of copyright. By this statement, I tell Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, broadcast, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and or its content. The actions mentioned above also apply to employees, students, agents and or other personnel under the direction of Facebook.

The content of my profile contains private information. The violation of my privacy is punishable by law (UCC 1-308 1-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).

Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are invited to publish a notice of this kind, or if they prefer, you can copy and paste this version.

If you have not published this statement at least once, you tacitly allow the use of elements such as your photos as well as the information contained in the profile update.”

Here is the response I have used relating to the above:

But I don’t recommend you do this very often, as it will lose its meaning and intension after a while. And maybe the loss of friends. You will end up appearing like a grouchy old lady complaining about the bus being four minutes late back in 1957. Compassion and tact should have been a better approach. I just make people look stupid and horrible about themselves. That is not proving a point.

I am learning from myself. I still, on occasion, reply with a fact-checked post to something that on the whole looks a bit suspicious, but I am trying to be kind and give people alternative (and more positive) sites to check facts. Blatant hate posts need a more in-your-face responce – a well researched one at least. Disproving one injustice with another is not helpful either. Is it?

I am sure I have posted the odd “give me an Amen” photo back in the day. I used to be one if those people I have started to disfavour. I do not detest or hate the person, just their choice of words. Wait, that means I do hate them. That did not come out the way I wanted it to.

Tuesday, 15 September was one of those days where I passive-aggressively posted this:

image

I noted on the post:

“I’m sorry, but I’ll keep scrolling.”

I’m sorry, I really need to find a way to express my dislike of things like this without being so mean. I think this may be Point 707 on the Issues List I need to discuss with the pastor I have been meeting with.

That along with how I can get the nerve to speak to my dad again.

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Filed under Ethical Treats, Progressive Christianity

The Odd One Can Be The Most Even, Part 2

Can a social minded person enjoy a good, yet slightly costly, cup of ethically produced coffee?

The answer to the question yesterday can be answered, just in a wee bit different way. The plan to answer the question did not go according to, er, plan.

The Ethiopian pavilion at Folk Fest only had coffee for sale served in tiny cups along with a bowl of popcorn. Unfortunately there was no chance to take a bag of coffee home. I did not have a change to try it as it was too hot in the building and I wanted to take my sample “on the road”. I looked everywhere at the pavilion, everywhere I say. The food and the culture are magnificent; making me want to visit. I decided to take a look around at other pavilions that may offer coffee fares as well.

No go.

I made my way to Rosthern this morning, as the Clothes Basket (a charity shop run by MCC) has a collection of fair trade coffees. Here are the ones I picked up:

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From the photo is looks like the bag has legs.

20150815_131857

My coffee pot brewed two beautiful cups of coffee. The one from Ethiopia, as noted on the package, did have a hint of cocoa and a spicy flavour which blended well. The one from Tanzania was bold and very favourable. I will get these again.

I cannot believe the number of coffee, tea, and other food products produced by Level Ground Trading (http://www.levelground.com). A few of the coffees and teas are found in Rosthern, which is a start. As I am the only one to drink coffee, I can be a bit more picky as to what I get and where I get it. Knowing there are organisations that support fair trade items and the producers makes me a bit more hopeful.

Helping developing communities through child sponsorship, mentoring projects for businesses, and the funding the sale of self-produced items are steps to get these people into a place of comfort to take care of their families and themselves. It also encourages those in established places the opportunity to sway away from relying on cheap labour to produce the products we strive in owning.

The need to not possess the next-best thing is a start. Understanding the need of impoverished people, whether home or abroad, helps the development of a person who may have lost hope. Working for little to nothing only creates stress and unaccountability.

I know that Richard and I need clothes and shopping at box stores does cause a bit of concern on the soul. We cannot financially afford to shop at stores that sell only ethically produced clothing, as the cost of these wares is much more than we can pay out. The idea of a person making a brand named shirt for nothing makes the drive to buy an ethically produced item more necessary.

That is a dilemma every person looking to shop ethically has found. I am perfectly hopeless in making my own clothes. I do watch the labels. I know that maybe a lame start, but it is one nonetheless.

With more research and questions, a a social minded person can enjoy a good, yet slightly costly, cup of ethically produced coffee.

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Filed under Contentment, Ethical Treats

The Odd One Can Be The Most Even, Part 1

Haroo!

Today being the 14th of August and a Friday, it is going to be a good day. As I still have to go to work today the rest of it is going to be swell. It will be my second day back to work after a bit of tummy trouble.

Folk Fest is going to be looked at. Folk Fest is Saskatoon’s version of Mosaic for my Reginian friends. For all my other friends, check out the link below.

http://www.saskatoonfolkfest.ca

I am still a bit under the weather, so I hope things go well. After eating soup, drinking pop and tea, or nothing at all for three days, a night out may take its toll.

I am filling this weekend with goodness. Richard has to work, which gives me the opportunity to make coffee with no complaining. Richard cannot stand coffee. Thankfully he loves me enough to withstand the pain. I suffer through tomatoes, blue cheese, and The Beatles.

After Wretch 32 (courtesy of the 1Xtra Prom), the door (replacement of door knob), and the husband’s work on Saturday, I plan on picking Richard up for another trip to Folk Fest. I plan on going to the Ethiopian pavilion to sample the greatness in coffee from there. That is considered to be a highlight. I hope to buy some coffee to be used in my favourite coffee contraption:

image

It is a rather simple machine, using science to make a cup of coffee. It is a reverse perculator. The process is magnificent. The taste, the result, the waiting is worth it.

For all the worrying folk, I am not becoming one of those coffee connoisseurs who irked me at my former workplace. At least I hope not. No, I have been considering giving up my Keurig for a simpler way. I have an old fashioned coffee maker for when family visits; otherwise, it will be my little guy.

I have also started to be wary of my coffee purchases. I try to go for Fair Trade options as found in various charity shops and markets in the city. Now I do worry about the technical label of “Fair Trade”. How fair and how much trade comes from this process? With this (hopefully) discerning look at coffee, I have become more choosy.

More elitist? Can a social minded person enjoy a good, yet slightly costly, cup of ethically produced coffee?

Join me tomorrow as I answer this question.

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Filed under Arts and Mines, Contentment, Ethical Treats, Foodie Faves