‘Prayer’ Category Archives

21
Jul

“ASSISTED DYING” TO BE LEGAL IN VICTORIA? thinking about the un-thinkable.

by Arnold Jago in Abortion, Australia, Beauty, Celebrities, crime, Death, Ethics, Prayer

The Victorian government plans legalising “assisted dying” for the terminally ill who request it.
They call the new laws “conservative” because they include 68 “safeguards” to prevent abuses.
Such arguments have emotional appeal but are not based on reason.
The traditional Christian teaching should be our guide:
“An act or omission which, of itself or by intention, causes death in order to eliminate suffering constitutes a murder gravely contrary to the dignity of the human person and to the respect due to the living God, his Creator….
“Discontinuing medical procedures that are burdensome, dangerous, extraordinary, or disproportionate to the expected outcome can be legitimate; it is the refusal of “over-zealous” treatment. Here one does not will to cause death; one’s inability to impede it is merely accepted….
“The use of painkillers to alleviate the sufferings of the dying, even at the risk of shortening their days, can be morally in conformity with human dignity if death is not willed as either an end or a means, but only foreseen and tolerated as inevitable….”
(Catholic Catechism, paragraphs 2277-2279)
Caring for the dying and disabled can be expensive in terms of money, time, love and compassion.
Do we care enough to make the effort – refusing to resort to intentional killing?

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19
Jun

HOW TO GET BETTER POLITICAL LEADERSHIP: one tentative suggestion.

by Arnold Jago in Celebrities, Lifestyle, Prayer, Science, Youth

If you’re reading this, you qualify as part of what might be termed the politically-obsolescent demographic.
The experts are saying it’s the young — functionally-illiterate under-30s, reachable only by Smartphone, Facebook, Twitter etc. – who increasingly decide elections.
Often they seem to choose superficial show-ponies.
Everybody willing to know has known for years that human brain development isn’t complete until at least one’s late twenties.
If people under 30 didn’t vote, would our leadership improve?
It wouldn’t, I suppose, solve all our problems.
But it might solve a lot of them.

25
Apr

ANZAC: time to reflect??????

by Arnold Jago in Australia, Death, Politics, Prayer, Suffering

ANZAC gives us time to reflect on the futile hideousness of war.
Also on how — human nature being basically good — peace will overcome evil if we try hard to copy the courage of the ANZACS.
Unfortunately, this second reflection isn’t true.
Today’s world has reached a point where wishful thinking can no longer keep us dumbed-down like before.
Meanness, lying, bullying, hatred – these dominate both our personal lives and international geo-politics.
What to do?
There are many options, e.g. pre-emptively blow North Korea apart, teach children gender-inclusiveness, adopt various postures towards Islam, impose sanctions on certain nation-states…?
None of these measures are sufficiently practical.
The most practical thing you and I can do is to pray.
How about an extra hour of praying per day?
No time?
On the contrary, if you don’t do it, I think you won’t have any time at all.
None of us will.
Time, for humans, may well be no more.

2
Aug

“ALLAHU AKBAR” OR “OUR FATHER”? how then should we relate to God?

by Arnold Jago in Faith, God, Prayer

Some Muslims commit atrocities while crying out “Allahu Akbar”.
It apparently means “Allah is greatest”.
Greatest? That can’t be right.
Muslims passionately profess to believe in only one god.
If so, wouldn’t he be better described as — not “greatest” — but the “only” god.
Jesus Christ taught believers to address God as “Our Father”.
He combined the creator’s uniqueness with a personal and intimate relationship that Islam doesn’t teach.
The lovingness of a Christian’s relationship with his/her God seems unique to Christianity.
It’s a wonderful thought. Surely it’s something every person is looking for, if only they knew it.
Why don’t they know it?
If only Christians’ lives more convincingly bore witness to their sharing in God’s fatherly love….
Today might be a good day for us to start trying a bit harder.

25
Dec

A HAPPY AND HOLY CHRISTMAS: and, hopefully, a better New Year.

by Arnold Jago in Jesus, Lifestyle, Prayer, Truth

Christmas Day.

The day to either celebrate — or to deliberately ignore — the birth of Jesus Christ.

Whatever else he was, this Jewish prophet had a message for the whole world that he called the “Kingdom of God”.

He taught us to pray for the coming of that Kingdom:

 “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be thy name,

 “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as in heaven.

“Give us today our daily bread — and forgive us our debts, as we have forgiven those who are in debt to us.

“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Amen” **

That was the prayer.

He followed immediately with the comment:

“Yes, if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will forgive you yours;

“But if you do not forgive others, your Father will not forgive your failings either.” **

The prayer is 2000 years old.

The commitment is one that we have, so far, not disciplined ourselves to live by.

If, with God’s help, we did live by it, would not the problems of fear, terror, genocide, gossiping, broken homes – all such things going on unchecked in our greedy world – start to give way to a new, better world?

Are you (am I?) willing to start praying it and doing it at the personal level — starting now?

(** source: Saint Matthew’s gospel, chapter 6)

 

18
Jul

HOW TO FIND A BETTER WORLD-VIEW: with some outside help.

by Arnold Jago in God, Lifestyle, Prayer

“DISTURB US, LORD, when we are too well pleased with ourselves,

“When our dreams have come true because we dreamed too little;

“When we arrived safely because we sailed too close to the shore.

“DISTURB US, LORD, when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the waters of life;

“Having fallen in love with life, we have ceased to dream of eternity.

“In our efforts to build a new earth, we have allowed our vision of the new heaven to dim.

“DISTURB US, LORD, to dare more boldly, to venture on wider seas where storms will show your mastery;

“Where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars.

“We ask you to push back the horizons of our hopes;

“And to push into the future with strength, courage, hope, and love.”

(attributed to Sir Francis Drake, 1540-96)