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This category contains 971 posts


‘Let no one who is not eager for truth and peace enter here’ (Plato)

Articles on this site express varying points of view, to encourage mature thinking on serious issues. The assumption is that you will want to study a controversial topic from various angles before you arrive at a conclusion, rather than simply believe what someone told you when you were impressionable! (So some stuff here is ‘hot’. Proceed at your own risk!). See the Statement of Faith for John Mark Ministries' theological stance.

MARRIAGE: Find the Acronym

MARRIAGE (FIND THE ACRONYM!) On the 15th April, 1995, the Rev. Jan Croucher (my wife) and I ‘celebrated’ the marriage of our daughter Amanda, to John Southwell. The beautiful service at the Heathmont Baptist Church in Melbourne, Victoria, began with Amanda’s four cousins – sisters who are all brilliant musicians – playing Bach’s Air on the […]

The Trouble With Men

Sexism, racism and the trouble with men August 8, 2015 Steve Biddulph Illustration: Andrew Dyson Two recurring and intractable problems keep rearing their heads on the front pages of our newspapers. Sexism

Allan Penn: eulogy for an amazing, humble man…

– by his son (‘Chewie) at a packed Thanksgiving Service, Heathmont Baptist Church, 25th May 2015. ~~ Since as early as I can remember, my father started each day by preparing a cup of tea, and a slice of toast, and taking it to my mother in bed, to help ease her into the day. […]

Women, Men and Domestic Violence: two views

1. The part women play in domestic violence Date May 12, 2015 Sallee McLaren Women can only command real power once we socialise girls to take themselves seriously and develop mental grit.   Don’t play the victim blame game with family violence Violence against women gets a lot of press at the moment. As a […]

MOTHERS’ DAY WISDOM (from 2nd-graders)

WHY GOD MADE MOMS: Answers given by 2nd grade school children to the following questions:   Why did God make mothers? She’s the only one who knows where the scotch tape is. Mostly to clean the house. To help us out of there when we were getting born. How did God make mothers? He used […]

Divorce liturgy

  The Grieving – Rowland   As we remember the wonder of Christ’s love, we know that we are humble and fallible human beings. When we grieve our failures, Christ is beside us in that moment and gives us pardon and strength.               Silent reflection and confession   Loving God, when a marriage has […]

Crabby Old Lady

This is special, and has been floating around the Internet for a while… When  an old woman died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home  in Moosomin, Saskatchewan, it was  believed that she had  nothing left of  any value.  Later, when the  nurses were going through her meager  possessions, they found this poem. Its […]

6 Breathing Tricks To Help You Fall Asleep Faster Tonight

The Huffington Post  |  By Alena Hall Posted: 02/11/2015 There’s no question that many of us would like to improve the quality of our sleepeach night. Tossing, turning, waking up frequently, struggling to fall back asleep — and that’s if we can even drift off in the first place. We are notorious for allowing bright […]

Domestic violence: how taboos veil the truth

January 27, 2015 Don Edgar Political correctness, inadequate data and pussyfooting around the problem will hamper the search for ways to stop family violence. Illustration: Andrew Dyson As head of the new Royal Commission into Family Violence, Justice Marcia Neave faces quite a challenge to find a “solution”. What she will find at the outset […]

Divorce hearings: a visit to the Court…

As a pastoral counselor I occasionally make forays into the law-courts of our city, to be an advocate, or simply a friend/encourager, when clients are in trouble. A recent excursion to the Federal Circuit Court was one of the most interesting – and challenging. The sign on the door read ‘Divorce List Only’. There were […]