COVID – The last two years

Two years ago, the first Covid case was diagnosed in Australia. Since then, we have seen this pandemic spread throughout our land. We have seen thousands affected with the virus and sadly, many deaths have occurred.

We have heard how nurses have interrupted their duties to sit and hold the hands of the dying whose family were not allowed to be with them.

Nowhere have we heard of how our bishops and priests sought permission to wear full PPE and offer to sit with the dying.  What would Jesus do in this situation? He certainly had no compunction about touching and being near those with leprosy who sought to be healed.

Our priests and bishops were closely following the government’s directives lest they and their congregations might contract the virus. But what of those who had already contracted the virus and those closely associated with them?

The clergy found it was safe to get into their vestments and perform the Mass ritual in front of a camera, social distancing of course, so Catholics could watch on their TV sets.

But, what they failed to understand was that we are a missionary church and we don’t come to church just to partake in the Mass ritual.  We gather to gain strength from each other, to be nourished by the Word and fed by the Eucharist so we can return to our missionary roll with new enthusiasm.

So, what was done to enable us to receive the Eucharist? We are told the Eucharist is the summit and source of our faith, yet it seems the only way we can be nourished by receiving the body and blood of Christ is to attend mass in a church.

People were in lock-down for months in some cases and at times when some churches were allowed to operate, we needed to have a pre-booked ticket to attend the Eucharist. What consideration and arrangements were made for those who couldn’t get in? Could tents have been erected outside and a TV service provided. Could local school accommodation be used effectively? What special arrangements were even considered for the unfortunate people unable to acquire a ticket?

Jesus told Peter three times to feed his lambs and his sheep. I think that made it fairly clear what He wanted done. But then at the Last Supper Jesus said ‘Whenever you do these things, you do them in memory of me’. He asked the Father to bless the food and drink they were having and through this means He gave Himself to them. I see no mention in scripture where only Catholic priests should be the only ones to continue this procedure.

As baptised Christians, I believe we are direct descendants of the first Christians. In John’s Gospel, Chapter 8, we read how Jesus was talking with some Jews who believed in Him. He said, “If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

 For those in lock-down and those unable to attend a church, how edifying it would have been, if while viewing the Mass on TV, they could have shared a meal as Jesus did and with reverence know that the Holy Spirit alive in each one of us converted our food and drink into the Blessed Eucharist.

If you are in isolation and you need food you can ring Coles or Woollies and get whatever you want delivered to your door. The same with a pizza and meals from other fast-food outlets. Yet, the Eucharist is not available, be it by home delivery or from a central point perhaps beside the church.

I think maybe our bishops couldn’t allow free access to the Eucharist because that would seriously affect the control they believe they have over us with transubstantiation.  Yet, it is the Eucharist that is our ‘food for the journey’.

Early in the pandemic days I suggested to the Victorian bishops that the church could set up an Australia wide phone centre manned by priests who would be available to receive calls from Catholics who were undergoing stress and family difficulties and needed some spiritual counselling. I didn’t even get a reply.

For eighty years I have lived out the teachings of the Catholic church but sadly it is only recently I have come to realise the church hierarchy form just another business organisation. So much is written that I have devoured and believed but I have had first-hand experience with the way I am supposed to accept what is written as against the reality of what really happens.

Statements have been issued telling of the new transparency within the church concerning victims of sexual assault by priests and religious. My experience has proven the hierarchy are not prepared to assist in bringing culprits to justice. Nor are they at all concerned about the needs of victims or victim’s families.

Nowadays I am content to determine what I believe the merciful Jesus would do in different situations and follow this prompting. No longer do I want to belong to a church whose hierarchy is only interested in controlling the people and maintaining the organisation. I just want to maintain a close relationship with the Blessed Trinity and love my neighbour as Jesus has instructed.

Peter Mack           26 January 2022 (Australia Day)

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Recognise me…!

After the resurrection and just prior to His ascension, Jesus said to his disciples, “Know that I am with you always”. He then proceeded to disappear into the heavens.

No wonder the disciples were perplexed. He had just told them he would be with them always and then disappeared from sight.

To understand the real meaning of what had been said we need to go back to the day Jesus died. We read in scripture how about the ninth hour Jesus ‘yielded up his spirit’. He breathed his last breath. His body had died as his spirit left him. The Blessed Trinity was reunited in heaven.

As Jesus had promised that he would return, this obviously happened, for there are many stories relating to his reappearance. Interestingly though, as a spirit he chose to be recognised by appearing as the body they knew. He appeared in the locked room where the disciples were gathered and asked Thomas to touch his wounds. He also ate meals with those present. All this was  to convince them, and us, he had risen as he said he would.

This was no magic trick, the spirit of Jesus appeared and disappeared as he wanted. It even took the 2 disciples on the way to Emmaus all day to recognise him.

When Jesus said he would be with us always we must assume that he is referring to his presence with us as spirit. If this is true then it is the Blessed Trinity that is with us, for the spirit of Jesus is one with The Father and The Holy Spirit.

How then can we recognise the Blessed Trinity in our lives? Many will point to creation and nature to ‘see’ the hand of God in operation. Others will ‘feel’ the presence of God in their lives at special times. But if our God is with us always, how do we recognise this presence on an on-going basis?

Perhaps we need to realise that God does not control our lives. We do that ourselves. How then does our God give us the constant support we need to assist us in maintaining our control and how do we even know this is happening?

The Father, our creator, gave us life in our mother’s womb. When we entered this world, our life began by our first breath. Our life continues with every breath we take until, as Jesus did, we breathe our last breath and give up our spirit.

Surely then, with every breath we take we should realise it is The Father who is maintaining us as his creation. With the presence of the Father also comes the Spirit of life we have in us. The Holy Spirit that has so many gifts to offer us in maintaining our existence, if we but recognise this presence within us. Jesus, as ‘The Word made flesh’ is also available to nurture and teach us if we reach out to this source of knowledge and understanding.

So, do we travel our pathway of life like the disciples on the road to Emmaus and only recognise Jesus at the end of the day and then realise he has been with us all the time. Or do we recognise our God is true to his word and is with us always with every breath we take?

I’m Peter Mack and That’s how I feel.

January 2022

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The Soul Survival Company

Deep within our very selves there exists a thriving little business called The Soul Survival Company.

The General Manager is Jesus who has said He will be with us always. He took up his position along with the Spirit when we were baptised. Of course, The Father is there as well to take submissions and determine what action should be taken as a result of the various requests that come in from time to time.

Jesus manages the day-to-day activities and is constantly available for consultations and the dispensing of free advice. Because we can only get to The Father through Him, He makes available this direct avenue for us whenever we ask. The Spirit is always on hand to inject specific gifts as required and works closely with Jesus and The Father.

The Soul Survival Company’s general office work is conducted by our Guardian Angel who also has the security role. Whoever was appointed to this position has been active on our behalf since our birth and set up the office while waiting for our Baptism to occur.

Our Guardian Angel is also responsible for connecting us with other Saints with whom we wish to relate at a specific time or for a specific purpose. There are direct lines to Mary and others we might require on a regular basis, such as St Anthony, when we lose things, St Joseph when we need assistance with our work and other family member Saints who are well versed in our specific needs.

It certainly is a busy little private company we have embedded within each one of us and each of the operational staff really enjoy our recognition of their presence. Should this occur both first thing in the morning and last thing at night as well as numerous times during our day the staff would be most impressed and always willing to assist as required.

Sadly, some of the Soul Survival Companies in some of us don’t always get the recognition they deserve. However, the staff eagerly await any call to action that might be forthcoming.

So, let’s ensure we keep our individual Company staff on their toes by being ever aware of the Company presence and let’s not forget to always thank them for their work on our behalf.

I’m Peter Mack and that’s how I feel.

May 2020

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The Rule – What’s behind this story?

We say as part of the Nicene Creed, “I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten son of God, born of the father before all ages. God from God….”

‘The Rule’ offers a way in which this might have occurred. While the story is primarily written so it might be adapted into a stage production, it challengers us to question within our own minds whether we are a true Christian and really believe in Jesus and His teachings.

So often we hear the term ‘Born Again Christian’. Jesus says, “we cannot see the kingdom of God unless we are born again”, being ‘born again’ seems then to be the most urgent task for those who hope for heaven.

Some might see being ‘born again’ as a process, often associated with what some Christians refer to as a ‘baptism in the Spirit’. I see being ‘born again’ in Christian terminology, as a decision made at some particular stage in our adult life when we come to the personal realisation that we really do believe in Jesus and His teachings. Being ‘born again’ is a decision we make and not just a feeling or an emotion.

In ‘The Rule’ we see Jesus as ‘The Word’ being created by The Father, God from God. When Mary made the decision to say ‘yes’ to becoming the mother of Jesus, she accepted Jesus as her saviour and He was born again, this time in human form. And thus, it could be said that, because of that decision, Mary became the first ‘born again’ Christian.

Although we may have been raised in a Christian environment, been baptised, taught about and read about Jesus this, in my opinion, does not qualify us as ‘born again’ Christians.

Just as The Father created Man and woman to populate his earthly creation, He is the one who determines when the miracle of birth will occur. He is the one who creates us with individual fingerprints and DNA characteristics. While we might often question whether a birth should ever have occurred, there must be an underlying reason why The Father created each individual human miracle.

As we live our individual lives, most of us become exposed to Christianity in its numerous forms. Maybe, we gain knowledge from a young age or are influenced towards Christian thinking at an older age. Maybe, we have serious reservations about what the Bible contains and how we see some Christians live their lives. Maybe we are happy to just see our Creator in the nature that surrounds us.

I believe our God allows us to find him in the way most suited to us as individuals. Some might call this the ‘gift’ of faith, others might see it as the ‘grace’ of discovery. When we consider that we were created so we might spend eternity in heaven, our God has to give us all a chance to become the person for which we were created.

It is my belief that at some time in our lives we are given the opportunity to make the decision that says ‘I truly believe’.  It is at that moment we are ‘born again’ and reciting The Creed takes on a whole new meaning as does our understanding of who Jesus was and the importance of ‘The Rule’.

So, let’s take another look at ‘The Rule’

“Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

“You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbour as yourself.” (Luke 10:25)

When you think about it, this represents a really serious form of loving. We must question ourselves whether we really understand the true significance of loving at this depth? How do we go about having a love affair which, under normal circumstances with an earthly partner, can often be a difficult ask?

Our God is unlike any partner we might encounter and therefore the enormity of the task might seem insurmountable. Yet, if this is what we must do to get to heaven then let’s together find a way in which we might fall totally in love with God.

As with the start of any love affair we need to find out as much about our lover as we can. If we are fortunate enough to have been raised in a Christian environment this gives us a reasonable background of understanding. If we have only recently found we have been given the gift of faith then we have some catching up to do. The basic book of knowledge of course is the Bible, but it is such a massive tome we need some balanced help to gain a broad picture of our God’s operation from creation to eternity.

There are certainly mountains of books available which, if you spent much of your time reading could seriously hamper the time you give yourself in which to get deeper into your loving relationship.

A love relationship is a two-way street. Partners need to be totally open and honest with each other just to get the relationship off the ground. So, let’s look at what God is prepared to put towards cementing our loving union. Well firstly, God’s main claim to fame is that we were created as unique individuals. We have been placed in a world created to provide for our every need. All around us we can use our senses to see, feel and touch this evolving creation. This must be considered as a reasonable contribution.

History has shown it became obvious we weren’t recognising the love God had given us and many were refusing to even recognise God’s existence, preferring to do their own ‘thing’ in furthering their individual causes in this world.

After many warnings, the Father sacrificed His own Son who was called Jesus to prove the love our God has for us all.

Apart from giving us the directions we need to create a wonderful love relationship with God and with each other, Jesus told us he was the way to the Father and then proved the love our God has for us by suffering and dying for us. Not only that, but He made a covenant or total commitment to always be available for each of us.

So, it is patiently obvious our God has already fulfilled all the needs of a great loving partner.  How then can we fulfill our side of the bargain? Just as with a human partner, true love is more than a feeling or an action, it is a decision. We jointly decide to love one another. Our God has already made the decision to love us, so we need to make this decision before going any further in developing the relationship further.

This is where the proposed love affair gets tricky. With a human partner you can embrace each other, you can see the look in their eyes, you can feel their heartbeat in unison with your own and you might even enjoy a sexual relationship. There are just so many emotions you can share which helps cement your relationship. It would seem this human form of relationship cannot be duplicated with our God. Or can it?

We can certainly be aware of the presence of our creator if we look at and feel the breeze blowing through the trees or stop and listen to the birds chattering in the branches. We can see our God in the beauty of a sunset or the glory of the sky as it lights up to start a new day. We can see the creator’s work in the simple beauty of a baby, the caring look on the face of a friend or the amazing strata of an exposed cliff face. The power behind an electrical storm, the wonder of our planetary system and the constant ebb and flow of the tides are also other indicators.

While we might live in the midst of the wonders of God’s creations, sadly we tend to take it all for granted. Perhaps this could be where our love relationship could start. We could just recognise God’s presence in our lives.

For our human love relationships to survive we need to be good communicators and we need to respect and be honest with each other. So, how might we achieve these aspects of our love affair with our God?

Instead of seeing our God as an almighty entity who lives in eternity and who seems beyond our reach, perhaps we could focus in on a just a simple relationship with Jesus. The advantage of this is that Jesus was human like us and lived in our world. We can seek Him out because he wants us to find Him. We can talk to Him as a brother, involve Him in all that we do and ask Him to help and support us as He has promised.

Let us see Jesus as an integral part of our lives and constantly thank Him for helping us in so many ways. Let’s not wait until we look back on our yesterdays to see how Jesus has helped us. Let’s thank Him constantly and we will soon become aware of all the little things that are happening in our lives thanks to our ongoing friendship and love affair with our God.

Thank you Jesus for your inspiration.

Love

Pete

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The Rule

“Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbour as yourself.” (Luke 10:25)

 The little house stood overlooking the eternal void. It had always been in a spirit world of its own. Its occupants, the Godmother and the Godfather were the only couple in existence. Being spirit, they had no need for sustenance, they never aged and happily existed together in a spiritual love environment which they called Heaven.

The Godfather was a creative type of spirit and on many occasions developed innovative ideas which he discussed with the Godmother who he knew he could rely on to enhance and temper his inspirations into more practical possibilities.

While sitting on their back veranda enjoying the sweetness of the void that surrounded their spirit world, the Godfather spoke of wanting to exercise his creative powers. The Godmother listened while he talked on and on about galaxies, stars, planets and even the possibility of creating human forms who could one day join them in their heavenly spirit world.

The Godmother could see her partner was deeply serious about this latest conceptual idea and became even a little excited herself at the prospect of being involved in helping to develop such a grand scheme. Not wanting to place a dampener on this innovative idea, she decided she should at least offer the Godfather her support, but she felt there were a number of questions in her own mind that needed answering before any creative work should begin.

The Godmother felt the idea of the proposed human population in another realm seemed a bit far-fetched and asked the Godfather if he might elaborate more fully on his plan. As it happened, this part of the plan was a bit sketchy, so they both thought deeply about how such an idea might work.

Time passed.

During their discussions it was agreed that If a new civilisation was to eventuate, they decided it would be best to develop a simple Rule to be followed that would enable the humans to live harmoniously together and prepare them for an eventual life of happiness in the eternal spiritual heaven. Rather than refer to themselves as Godfather and Godmother in the Rule, they felt that, because they were spiritually One, they would just call themselves by the simple term of God.

The Rule they agreed upon was that ‘all humans should love their God with their whole heart, soul, strength and mind and that they must love each other as they love themselves’.

While the Godfather was all ready to vigorously commence his creation programme, the Godmother cautioned him to think about how these humans might react to this Rule of theirs in the longer term. She wondered how they would learn to understand what love was and how maintaining an allegiance to them as God might eventually wain.

As time was never a problem in their spiritual Heaven, these concerns, along with others, were discussed at length until what seemed like most of the foreseeable problems had been analysed and addressed. Although they both had some misgivings about what the concept of giving individuals ‘free will’ might have.

Together, God decided that a good idea might be to devise a trial in their spiritual heaven so they might gauge the effectiveness of this ‘free will’ and determine ways it might best be implemented within their eventual human society.  This seemed to be a very practical approach that could be taken before embarking on such a major construction and creation plan which, doubtlessly, would seriously change their own existence and also Heaven as they knew it.

And so, God set about creating a complete spiritual angelic civilisation within Heaven. A major concern was how individual angels would react to The Rule in their own way. Both the Godmother and the Godfather felt for the experiment to succeed, it would be necessary to have the angel’s personalities closely resemble those that it was envisaged the humans might possess. To help achieve this, each angel was given the ability to make decisions for themselves on the understanding that The Rule was to be adhered to at all times.

The Godly Rule was enacted and the Godfather and the Godmother watched with interest as their new angelic spirit families increased in number and spread to many parts of their Heavenly home.

Time passed.

Gabriel, one of the senior angels, came to the Eternal House of God to tell them some disturbing news. He sat with the Godfather and Godmother on their back veranda where they enjoyed the quietness of the void and told of how an insurrection was being planned by a rebel group of angels who objected to following the Godly Rule.

It seemed some of the angels were supporting Lucifer, a senior angel, who seemed more intent on promoting himself and sought to have all power and control. He scoffed at The Rule and threatened to get enough followers to support his cause and to take over the Eternal House of God.

God thanked Gabriel and told him that ‘good will always overcome evil’ and asked that he send the Archangel Michael to their home for a briefing.

In the meantime, Lucifer heard that Gabriel had paid a visit to God and reasoned he would have to act smartly or maybe his grand ambitions might be squashed before a blow was struck.

At the request of Lucifer, the Godfather and the Godmother met him at the front gate. There was no way he was being invited to sit out on the back veranda as a guest. Lucifer bowed and offered praise and honour to God, as he felt he was expected to do. The Godfather could see through the insincerity of this greeting and asked the purpose of the visit.

Lucifer’s opening remark proposed a deal with God. This was greeted with a smirk, as he was made well aware that deals were not done with those who flouted The Rule. Lucifer was made well aware that his rebellious activities among the other angels was already known by the Godfather and the Godmother. Lucifer cowered at the base of the gate.

He looked up and mentioned he had heard a whisper that God was looking to set up a whole new civilisation outside of spiritual heaven and he was hoping he might be able to assist in some way. He offered to completely repent for his wrongdoings and dob in all those angels who were his followers if he could be pardoned and set free to promote the wonder of the creator to those in the ‘new world’.

God was not fooled by this fiend and told him to wait while his punishment was determined. The Godfather motioned to the Godmother to come back inside to discuss how they might deal with Lucifer.

The Godfather had some serious misgivings about allowing Lucifer access to his proposed new world but he insisted that ‘good will always triumph over evil’ and if humans were to eventually join them in heaven, individual’s free will would need to be tested, just as the angels had been tested. He felt that allowing Lucifer to move among his creation would enable humans to more readily understand the value of ‘good’ as against the horrors of ‘evil’.

He was not naive enough to think that human weakness wouldn’t prevail in many situations, but he felt this would enable his human creation to recognise the wonder of their creator and what they stood to lose should they choose to follow Satan. In addition, God felt that this could also add to the devil’s frustrations and heighten his on-going punishment as sinners repented, which God believed they would.

Lucifer was admonished for his actions and told he would never again see the shining face of his God and that the beauty and wonders of heaven were closed to him forever. He would suffer severe loneliness and was banished to be a lone spirit in a world yet to be created where ‘good would always overcome evil’. God told him his punishment would continue for all eternity.

The devil could do nothing more than accept his lot and so he slinked away. Although inwardly feeling deeply wounded, he was still determined to do whatever he could to bring down the Eternal House of God by whatever means he might have at his disposal. What he didn’t know was the Godmother was already formulating a plan which would act as an insurance against his evil intensions.

Archangel Michael arrived and was given the commission to drive all of Lucifer’s followers to an enclosed compound to be annexed out of sight of the glory of heaven at the far end of the spiritual void. For them it would become one hell of an existence.  Michael was informed of Lucifer’s particular punishment and departed to summon his almighty army and fulfill God’s request.

With Lucifer out of the way, his followers capitulated to the might of Michael and his army. Amid cries and lamentations from Lucifer’s followers, God’s plan was promulgated and thus hell became a permanent place of punishment where the inhabitants would never again enjoy the wonder of God and the heaven they had previously known.

Time passed

Meanwhile, the Godmother discussed her plan with the Godfather. It involved bringing into existence a third member of their Godly family, whose main responsibility would be to love and care for the human population created as part of the Godfather’s proposed plan. This would extend, if necessary, even to becoming an integral part of the new civilisation in order to promote The Rule and the wonder of God.

The Godmother felt this integration would only need to occur if, like the angels, greed and a desire for power were to cause too many humans to turn away from God. The role of the third member would also include an ability to show anyone who sought it, ‘the way to the Father.’

Because this Spirit creation would come into being as a result of the mingling of their creation concepts, the Godfather and the Godmother thought it appropriate that they refer to this Spirit as their Son.

While the Godfather Spirit saw himself being referred to as The Father, God of Creation, he saw the Godmother spirit as his great Helper, God of Life, as she would breathe life into his creation. Because of his planned specific role, he saw the Spirit of their Son as the God of Humanity.

And thus, the three Spirits combined to became one God and the Blessed Trinity became a reality.

The Godfather agreed to the insurance concept and suggested the Son should be totally involved in the creation process as well, so he would be fully aware of all aspects of the complete project being proposed. He suggested that as the Son might be required to live out every word contained in The Rule he and the Godmother had devised, then it seemed appropriate that the Son should be referred to as ‘The Word’.

God felt all the eventualities within the plan had been considered and so the great creation of our world began. ‘In the beginning was The Word and The Word was with God and The Word was God’.

Scripture stories tell us of the creation of our wonderful world and everything in it, both visible and invisible. Light became available and the galaxies, stars and planets envisioned by the Godfather become a reality.  We learn of the separation of the lands and the seas. We marvel at the animals on the ground, the birds in the air and the fish in the sea. Seeds and plants and trees provided shelter and food. All was in readiness for the coming of the Godfather’s greatest creation.

God was happy watching his creation grow and evolve. The Godfather turned to the Godmother and the Son and said, “Let us now make humans in our own image. We want them to enjoy the world we have given them and eventually be welcomed back with us into our heaven.”

It was determined that no two humans would be exactly the same, males were created in the image of the Father and females in the image of the Mother. As with the angels, all the humans were given the gift of a free will. From the very start, The Rule was made clear to human creation and eventually, when some chose to question it, God even expanded it into 10 Commandments. It was felt this made it even more obvious what behaviour was expected from God’s people towards their God and to each other.

The devil, meanwhile, was infiltrating himself in among the population. Lucifer found he could exploit human weaknesses, so that individuals might begin to question the God of their creation. He knew what it was like to gather up possessions and go in search of power and control so he used his evil knowledge to tempt those who were vulnerable.

Time passed.

Sadness crept into the Eternal House of God as it became obvious to the Blessed Trinity that many humans were not living The Rule. Some had even created their own Gods which they worshipped. Others became so entrenched in satisfying their own desires, they completely disregarded the needs of others. The gifts the Spirit of God had given humanity to build up their communities were misused by some individuals whose desire for power and riches was often at the expense of the downtrodden.

God was deeply saddened by what was happening and realised it was becoming increasingly obvious that the Son would have to be sent to Earth to redeem the world. They knew this meant certain pain, considerable suffering and even a horrible human death for the Son. They realised for the sake of the whole world, the time had arrived to enact the insurance arrangement they had put in place all those eons ago in the event of something of this magnitude ever happening.

The process had been well planned. Gabriel was sent to a good woman named Mary, chosen for her holiness. His delicate role was to ask her to consider being the earthly mother of the Messiah. Mary was at first taken aback by the very thought of her, a virgin, becoming pregnant, but her deep faith in God enabled her to respond to Gabriel “Be it done unto me according to thy word.”

And the Word was made flesh and lived among us. He was named Jesus.

As Jesus grew in age and wisdom, he experienced life as a human being. At around the age of 30 he felt it was time to go public and complete the reason for his human existence. He knew he must fulfil the Father’s request to make the world in which he lived aware of The Rule and the love their God had for all creation.

His task commenced when he chose to be baptised by his cousin John. It was on this occasion that the Father, speaking from an overhead cloud, made everyone present fully aware that this was ‘his Son with whom he was well pleased.’ The Spirit of God appeared as the softness of a dove and he recognised the presence of his God mother Spirit.

Jesus travelled the countryside attracting followers along the way. He told simple stories about what God wants of us and how to apply The Rule in our lives.  As a human he relied on God to help cure and heal people. God supported his work by providing miracles on many occasions. Jesus made many friends, but he also made enemies who were jealous of his popularity. Jesus taught his friends how to pray and told them of his spiritual Father in heaven. He constantly referred to the need to live out The Rule and often went off on his own to pray.

On one occasion the devil saw he was weak from praying and fasting and had a go at tempting him by offering him ownership of the whole world, if he would just bow down before him. Jesus vehemently told him where to go and then enjoyed the ministrations of some angels sent by his Godmother to assist him.

We are all born with the express purpose of living. Jesus was the only person born purely to die. And as the time of his death drew near, he gathered his friends around him and instituted the New Covenant in which he promised his Spirit would be with them for all time.

After asking his Father’s blessing, he shared bread and wine with them and told them to eat and drink this as his body and blood, which would be sacrificed for mankind. He told them whenever they did this, they should do it in memory of him.

That night he was betrayed by one of his own followers. When he prayed to his Father for help, this was not forthcoming. In fact, not only did he have to suffer the pain and misery that would come during the next hours, he had to take on board the pain of all the sins of mankind as well. The load was immense.

In Heaven, while this horrific scenario was playing out on earth, the Godfather was distraught. The Godmother, inconsolable. It was a situation they had hoped would never happen, but because of this event they knew humankind would forever more be reminded of the need to live out The Rule and by so doing, enjoy the wonder and joy of everlasting life.

After Jesus breathed his last breath, his Spirit left his earthly body and came back to his spiritual home where, because of his suffering and death, the gates of Heaven were flung open for all those souls awaiting this great day.

There was a tearful reuniting between the Son, his Godfather and Godmother. The Trinity was once more three spirits in one God. The Son had completed the task given him by the Father and because of the New Covenant he had made with humankind, would be available to help anyone who called on him in their efforts to live out The Rule.

The Son had one more visit to make before being ministered to by a group of doting angels organised by his Godmother. He went to the gates of Hell and left there the image of the suffering Jesus on the Cross as a constant reminder to those anguished souls within of what they had done to their God.

True to his word, Jesus rose from the tomb on Easter Sunday. While his Spirit took on the wounded body of Jesus, he made sure he was recognised. He cooked and ate breakfast with some of the apostles, joined two others on the road to Emmaus and appeared to them all while they were in a locked room.

Jesus reminded his followers of the Covenant he had made with them at the Last Supper and promised his Spirit would always be with them. Even so, they remained locked up in a room for fear that they would be caught and suffer a similar fate to Jesus.

God sent the Helper, as the Holy Spirit was called at the first Pentecost, to fire up the disciples, remove their inhibitations and get them out into the world, so we might all understand why Jesus suffered and died for us.

As Christians, we need to follow in the disciple’s footsteps. We have a responsibility to embrace The Rule ourselves, spread the Good News and look forward to eventually being one with our God in the spiritual world of Heaven.

How fortunate we are that the Spirit of the risen Jesus lives in each of our hearts today. This was his part of the New Covenant.

After everything our God has gone through for us, it is now up to us to try and live out The Rule in our daily lives.

NOTE:

In writing this story it has always been my intention that maybe one day it might be used as the basis for a stage production.

Naturally some parts are purely imaginative, but I hope readers will use these ideas to create even further possibilities in their personal understanding of the depth of our God’s love for us.

As the story progresses, it broadly follows that which is well known. However, it is my wish that it will offer a further opportunity for us to perhaps relook at our individual life’s journeys in respect of The Rule.

Peter Mack

October 2021

See also The Rule – What’s behind the story

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The first Christmas

Joseph couldn’t believe what he was hearing as he listened to the Government Proclamation being read out in the Nazareth City Square.

A Roman Census was to be held which required him to travel to Bethlehem, the city of his ancestors, and register. Even under normal circumstances this trip would take him at least 5 days to travel the 150 odd kilometres along the flatlands of the Jordan River, through the Judean Desert, over the hills surrounding Jerusalem and on into Bethlehem. But these were not normal circumstances.

It wasn’t necessary for Mary, his wife, to accompany him because he, legally, could sign the register as head of the family. However, he knew Mary would insist on being with him during this time, as it was close to the birth of her special baby.

The male in Joseph could see the difficulties that would lie ahead should they both go to Bethlehem with Mary in her advanced stage of pregnancy. If only Mary would agree to stay at her mother’s while he was away.

Mary was having none of Joseph’s arguments because, as she pointed out, he had a particular role to play in the providing for, and the upbring, of their future son. He had been chosen by God to be their special son’s earthly guardian and carer and, as the birth was imminent, Mary said she wanted to be with Joseph and was prepared to go to Bethlehem with him.

Joseph knew he couldn’t win this argument, so as he set about planning for their journey and he thought about how he and Mary’s paths had first crossed.

After the death of his first wife, Joseph had devoted himself to helping out at the Temple in Jerusalem where his building skills were needed in repairing the aging construction. He enjoyed his repairs and maintenance tasks for the Temple high priest, Zechariah and his wife. It was at the Temple, Joseph first met Mary. 

Mary’s parents, Anne and Joachim, were childless and according to the history books, had promised God that if they were to have a child, they would offer that child up to the Lord’s service in the Temple in Jerusalem.

It was after Joseph’s Temple service that Zechariah suggested to Mary’s parents that she would make a good housekeeper for Joseph. In those days, children’s future partners were decided without serious consultation with the child.

As the thought of having a live-in house keeper was generally frowned upon, an arranged marriage saw the teenage Mary engaged to Joseph. It was, while living back at her own home preparing for her upcoming marriage, Mary received the now well-documented angelic visit and, although still a virgin, her pregnancy commenced.

Following this visit from the angel and her acceptance, Mary sent a note to Joseph saying, ‘Joe, we need to talk’.

Even though he thought the world of Mary, her story was a bit hard for him to understand. He left with a downtrodden heart knowing that he must end the relationship quietly, because, should it become generally known that Mary became pregnant behind his back, the law called for a serious response, which could even include a public stoning.

Fortunately for Mary and their relationship, Joseph got an angelic visit as well. Armed with this new understanding, Joseph hightailed it back to Mary’s place to apologise. Together they worked through the steps they needed to take to formalise their marriage and prepare for the coming of their baby boy, who they had been instructed to call, Emanual. After their marriage, Mary moved into Joseph’s home.

Joseph arranged to borrow an old donkey so Mary at least wouldn’t have to walk to Bethlehem, when they went to fulfill his census duty. He thought of the possibility that she might give birth on the journey, or they might be stranded away from home while she recovered from the birth. So, he put together a tool kit which he fastened behind a somewhat primitive form of saddle on the donkey. This kit, he reasoned, would allow him to pick up some odd jobs that would fund whatever might be needed should at any stage they ran out of money.

He also strapped onto the donkey a supply of food, probably dried bread, some oil and some herbs. Also included were some wineskins filled with water and warm cloaks to protect them during the cold nights. Mary, in the meantime, was also conscious of the bumpy ride she must endure and the possible consequences, but was determined to go with Joseph. She had been sewing some swaddling clothes for the baby and packed these, along with some essentials for herself, just in case they might be needed.

They eventually set off on their 150km journey along the dusty Bethlehem Road, along with many others heading in the same direction for the same purpose. Donkeys are not renowned for their record-breaking ground speed and this old fellow was slower than most. It was a hot, dusty, tiring journey which had to be interrupted for the occasional rest and drink break for them both and the donkey. At night they would have rested with others on the same journey to help protect themselves from any wild animals or even bandits.

Because of their slow progress getting to Bethlehem, Joseph unfortunately found on making enquiries around the town, there was no accommodation available, not even at his relations’ homes.

Joseph’s plea to the innkeeper concerning Mary’s condition gave them two options.  The innkeeper said they were welcome to use the stables at the rear of the inn, but there were so many horses and donkeys tethered there that he thought there would hardly be room enough for them as well. He said the only other possibility was one of the caves in the hills nearby, often used by the local shepherds to shelter their flocks from the cold. After consultation with Mary, Joseph chose this latter suggestion

As luck might have it (or was it divine intervention), they found such a cave. It was night now and Joseph settled Mary down on some dry straw and proceeded to unload and tether the donkey. Joseph was concerned, that should Mary give birth while out here, away from available help, he would feel ill equipped to assist in the delivery. As he pointed out to Mary, his brick laying and cabinet making skills were a far cry from him even having a basic knowledge of obstetrics.

They needn’t have worried. The goodness of God came to the rescue. As Mary became aware her birthing time was near, the angels who came to both Mary and Joseph originally, appeared again to them on this occasion. The cave became filled with a soft light and the angels called on the Holy Spirit, who had been responsible for Mary’s miraculous impregnation while still remaining a virgin, to once again intervene.

The same Holy Spirit would ensure Mary suffered no pain at the birth, as this was a most joyous occasion.  While her obedience to the word of The Lord was recognised at this time, her pain would come later in the life of her son.

Joseph, kneeling beside the resting Mary, had his rough builder’s hands placed gently beside his wife’s stomach by an angel. In the background a heavenly choir sang in harmony, ‘Gloria in Excelsis Dei’. Joseph looked up as he heard a voice proclaim, “And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us”.

As Joseph looked down once more at his hands, he realised Mary had given birth and he was actually holding the infant Jesus. As he passed this precious new-born baby up to Mary, the little boy’s eyes opened and Joseph was sure he detected a slight smile on its face.

Joseph’s prayer that night was a prayer on behalf of us all, “Thank you Father for sending us Jesus”.

Well, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

I’m Peter Mack and that’s how I feel

Christmas 2020

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The Circle of Life

Creation theories are numerous and vary from one religion to another and from one race of people to another. Some believe the ‘Big Bang’ was the source of our universe commencing and the Bible tells the story of God creating our world in six days. Some even see certain star groups in the cosmos as the source of man’s creation.

The opening words of ‘the Bible’s Book of Genesis refers to God’s creation of the universe, not the beginning of God’s existence.  In Paul’s letter to the Colossians 1:17, Paul tells how Christ existed ‘before anything was created”.

All the creation theories seem to have a starting point, prior to which everything is ‘unknown’. For example, who created the stars or who instigated the ‘Big Bang’. If it was God who started creation rolling, then who created God?  Many people of different faiths just throw their hands in the air and are prepared to accept that it is a big mystery that can’t be understood.

As human beings we like to think everything has a ‘beginning’ but many tend to accept the term ‘everlasting’. Our prayer ‘Glory be…’ says, “As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be”. Most of us believe there is a form of life after death and often add “forever and ever. Amen” to our prayers.

You must wonder whether those who don’t believe in a life hereafter question in their own minds just what their life is all about?  What is the purpose of their living? Is life just about enjoying oneself and having a good time irrespective at whose expense that might be, because everything comes to a stop when we die?  So, we often hear the phrase, ‘let’s eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die’!

For those of us who believe in a life hereafter, our struggle here on earth must be seen as a preparation for that time when the promises of Christ will become a reality. We are human. We fail. We get up again. We are not expected to be perfect, but just to be triers.

Once again, for many it all seems to fit into the ‘too hard’ category. However, if we can so readily accept the words, ’forever’ and ‘everlasting’ then we need to look beyond the word ‘beginning’. If we believe our loving God ‘always was’ and ‘always will be’ then this makes our acceptance of our Faith so much easier.

I’m Peter Mack and that’s how I feel.

20 January 2020

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Take it easy

I find that sometimes our God can talk to us using the lyrics from well-known songs. It is possible that we can see the lyrics having an entirely different meaning from that which is evident when listening to the song.

Maybe we should listen more closely to the words of a song and not just enjoy the melody. It is possible there might be a message in the song beyond what the lyricist intended. Take for instance the great Eagles song, ‘Take it Easy’.

The lyrics tell us of the singer’s quest to find true love in his life that has so far been unsuccessful. It seems it is true love which he desires more than anything else.

He tells himself to “take it easy” and to approach the situation with a cool head and not to ‘let the sound of his own wheels drive him crazy!’

It is a bit like our search for our God throughout our life. We generally recognise God or some higher being exists, but our busy life doesn’t always allow us the time or the inclination to really get to fathom out what this relationship is all about. We are told to ‘lighten up while you still can.’

While the lyrics refer to ‘a girl my Lord in a flatbed’ ute, they also raise the unanswered question of the Lord that ‘I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me’. And it is recognised that, ’we may lose and we may win, though we will never be here again’. And while ‘I may be ‘running down the road trying to loosen my load, I’ve got a world of trouble on my mind’.

While we may only find the peace we seek in our God who truly loves us, we are very conscious of our shortcomings and our worthiness so we are ‘lookin’ for a lover who wont blow our cover. We know ‘we got it easy’ but ‘I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me’.

And Jesus reaches out and tells us to come to Him all who labour and He will give us rest. He will give us the freedom we need to ‘Take it Easy’.

I’m Peter Mack and that’s how I feel

September 2021

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Plenary Council 2022 – My submission

ENLIVENING THE CHURCH BY EMPOWERING THE PEOPLE

I believe we need to question why the Church is in the position it is at present with many parishioners choosing not to attend the Sacraments. Maybe we need to re-examine and redefine what we believe Jesus wants of us as Church.

The title of this paper refers to our Church becoming enlivened by the empowerment of the people. It is my belief, for this to occur, there needs to be a major change in our attitude as people of the Church. In addition, the Church hierarchy could examine the current relationship it has with us, as ordinary Church members, and consider what changes might need to be made in order to align itself more closely with the people it serves.

The Role of our Priests

As I see it, when we come together to celebrate The Eucharist, (or attend Mass as some would still call it), the Priest does all the officiating. Sure, we get to take up the collection and the Offertory gifts and we even get to read Scripture but only Priests can read the Gospel. We can help distribute the Eucharist but this, I feel, is more to get the communicants through and back to their seats so Mass doesn’t extend beyond 1 hour, or some parishioners might start to complain.

Historically, it has just become acceptable that a Priest will handle all spiritual expectations and all we need do is keep God’s 10 Commandments and attend the Eucharist each Sunday. Our Priest will be available whenever we need him, day or night. Apart from preparing and delivering an appropriate homily on Sundays, we accept that the Priest is aware of the activities of different groups and societies operating in the parish and is also knowledgeable about events happening in our world and area that affect our communities. He is expected to officiate at baptisms, weddings and funerals, provide absolution for our sins and be there for us when we are sick or as we near the end of our lives.

Our Priest is expected to instantly provide a blessing for everything from rosary beads to new cars and must always be on time for Mass. Is it any wonder vocations are on the decline?

We expect so much from our Priests and when we attend our Eucharist, other than providing the minor assistance mentioned above, we greet each other, follow the overhead liturgy wording, listen attentatively to the Scripture and the homily, pray, receive the Eucharist, contribute to the two collections and go home. Sadly, some of those who come to our Eucharist are just ‘attendees’. Coming together to celebrate the Eucharist should be more about continually growing our relationship with Jesus and with each other.

By virtue of their studies and professional qualifications, our Priests are our spiritual leaders and advisers. They are human like us, as Jesus was. Jesus led the disciples, He showed them the way to the Father by telling them stories with which they could easily relate.

Our Role as Church

As members of the Catholic Church, we need to be more aware and thankful we have been given the gift of Faith and that we use the Church and the Sacramental life to maintain and constantly grow that gift. I believe this gift is very much like the love we give each other when we receive the Sacrament of Matrimony. I feel Faith, like Marriage, is an ongoing commitment that needs to be constantly worked on and developed so it becomes richer, stronger and deeper. Like love, our faith is not just a feeling or emotion, it is a decision of the heart.

While our Priests deserve to be treated with respect, we need to be more aware of the selfless service with which they provide us. We, in turn, need to not only be prepared, but be willing, to make ourselves available to help them, and members of our Church community, in whatever way we can that will support and maintain each other on our journey. We should no longer see our Priests as the Reverend Father up on a pedestal, but our earthly spiritual leader and our friend working with us and among us, towards our salvation.

The Empowerment of our Parishioners

I don’t believe we can empower parishioners without loosening some the existing man-made rules, regulations and control that is maintained by the Church hierarchy. I believe the congregation at our Eucharistic Celebrations has to individually feel they are a worthy, vital part of the celebration that assists our spiritual growth. We have to see ourselves as today’s apostles and need to have the same desire to follow in the footsteps of Jesus as those in the early Church.  We have to be more than just attendees; we have to eagerly look forward to our attendance so we might experience Jesus afresh and commit more deeply in our personal relationship with our God. We need to be able and willing to live by example the Good News of the Gospel.

So, how can this enthusiasm be injected into our people in our present situation? Many of us, although aware of the presence of the Holy Spirit within us, are not fully aware of the power that presence can generate, particularly when we come together to celebrate the Eucharist.

Paul’s letter to the Ephesians 3:16 states, “In the abundance of his glory may he, through his Spirit, enable you to grow firm in power with regard to your inner self”.

To help us become more aware of how the power of the Spirit within us can be used effectively, I would like to offer the following suggestions, purely as a means of initiating discussion that hopefully will lead to more enthusiastic church attendances.

Our church environment

At the Last Supper Jesus shared the meal at a table around which all the apostles sat. In those churches where the altar is positioned where the people sit around it, then, this form of authenticity might allow us to feel we are attending an invitation to a meal with Jesus.

I can’t imagine Jesus wore clothes any different from his friends. If our Priests were to wear a simple stole to signify their leadership role, I believe that would be sufficient to align them more with the congregation.

The Liturgy

We come together to celebrate the Eucharist, ‘the summit and source’ of our existence. The Last Supper was Jesus’ farewell meal with his friends. He not only instituted the New Covenant where He promised to always be with us, but gave his apostles the means of remembering him forever. ‘As often as you do these things you do them in memory of me’.

The Eucharistic Prayers, which only the Priest recites, obviously are designed to cover the aspects of the Last Supper that lead us to the Consecration and the distribution of the Eucharist. We, the congregation, do get to say ‘Amen’ during these prayers, indicating that we agree with all that has been said.

I feel if our celebrant was to use the current Eucharistic Prayers to involve us, in the way Jesus would if he were present, then the laity would feel more aligned with the events of the Last Supper. It would allow our Priests to re-tell these events as story, for, in reality, the Bible is basically a proclaimed and spoken word, a book of stories. Our Priest would hold our attention, be in direct eye contact with us and enable different parts of the Eucharistic Prayers to be more fully explained for our better understanding.

The Consecration

Since the Council of Trent, the church rules and regulations only allow ordained priests to perform this rite. Perhaps if we re-examine what Jesus wants of us, we might relook at His words, “As often as you do these things, you do them in memory of me”. Jesus made no mention of only ordained Catholic Priests being able to ‘do these things’. Are we not all apostles responsible for taking the ‘Good News’ to the world?

Fortunately, Priests and most Catholics believe that it is the Holy Spirit on which we rely for transubstantiation to occur. (some Catholics might believe it is the Priest who performs the miracle on the alter).

The Consecration prayers during our Mass are always performed with much reverence by our Priests and the same reverence is given to this sacred part of our Eucharist by those attending. If this exclusive rite were extended to include all those present at the Eucharistic Celebration, the congregation would feel so much more an integral part of the re-enactment of the Last Supper.

I believe it would more align the congregation with their Priest as pastor and leader and take those present to a deeper relationship with their God.

Transubstantiation or Transfiguration

In our current Eucharistic prayers, we ask the Father’s blessing on our offerings as Jesus did at the Last Supper and our Celebrant asks the Holy Spirit to come down on our offerings of bread and wine and change them into the body and blood of our Saviour Jesus Christ.

I have always wondered why our Priest needs to ask the Holy Spirit to come DOWN when the Spirit is already down and present within each one of us as baptised Christians.

If the Church were to accept this situation, then, instead of the Consecration part of our existing Eucharistic Celebration, the important role of our Priests would be to share the wonder of the Eucharist by assisting us prepare for the coming of Jesus into our individual heart and soul.

As John the Baptist prepared the people for the coming of Jesus, so too our Priests would prepare us. It would be a time during our Mass when, with the help of our Priest, we could individually and reverently prepare for the miracle that would occur within each of us as the blessed food from our offerings melds with the Holy Spirit within us and our heavenly Father says quietly to us, “This is my Son in whom I am well pleased”.

This ‘transfiguration’ is one where we can honestly and humbly say, ‘I thank you Jesus for although I am unworthy, you have still come to me and allowed me to become one with you and the Father and the Holy Spirit’.  

Just as we believe and trust in the Spirit changing the bread and wine by the Priest on our behalf, so too must we trust that the same Spirit within each of us would make the same change.

It is my belief that the ramifications of this reaction would also engender a greater understanding of the power of the Holy Spirit within us and have us wanting to be a part of our Church Eucharistic Celebrations. The excitement, hopefully, would soon spread to lapsed Catholics who would recognise that the Holy Spirit has come alive and is blowing as a gentle breeze through the Church. I am sure many would recall the words of the Hosea song, ‘Come back to me with all your heart. Don’t let fear keep us apart’.

Go in peace, the Mass is ended

After our Communion, our Priest can remind us we have received food for our journey and it is our responsibility as Baptised Christians to take the Good News of the Gospel out to others. I feel we would be enthusiastically leaving the church building as the apostles left their room on that first Pentecost – excited.

Perhaps a more appropriate ending to our Eucharistic Celebration might be, “My brothers and sisters we have received the Eucharist as food for our journey. Let us go into our communities and love one another as Jesus directed us to do. Love is a universal language and recognised by all. They will know we are Christians by our love”.

Summary

This submission puts forward for consideration the following suggestions:

  • Parishioners need to be more than just ‘attendees’ as we celebrate the Eucharist together, we need to build up and enhance our Gift of Faith.
  • More emphasis to be placed by our spiritual leaders on the role of the Holy Spirit within each of us.
  • It would be more realistic if the church environment were to be more aligned to the Last Supper setting.
  • The Eucharistic prayers to be told as story rather than recited from a book.
  • The Consecration part of our Eucharistic Celebration to become a blessed preparation for the receipt of the blessed symbols of bread and wine by communicants, so they will be fully aware of the role of the Holy Spirit within each of us to convert these symbols to the holiness of the Eucharist.
  • Following our Eucharistic Celebration, it would seem more appropriate to have an enthusiastic farewell and a reminder of our responsibility as committed Christians.

Conclusion

It is my wish that this Plenary Council will result in a greater interest and involvement by baptised Catholics in practicing their faith and in the development of deeper personal relationships with God.

I believe the hierarchy within our Church needs to pivot from its current mode of operation to one which will enliven and empower the people.

It will be essential that any changes agreed upon are enthusiastically driven by our hierarchy from the top down. I feel the biggest challenge will be to communicate to all of us the Church’s acceptance of the changes and to ensure we fully understand how they will strengthen our faith and our individual relationship with Jesus.

Peter Mack

December 2020

Praying through my playlist

I enjoy listening to songs I love which I have included on various playlists. Recently, I was lying flat on the loungeroom floor with my feet up on a chair higher than my heart, (this position I am told is ideal for good circulation). I was listening to my ‘easy-listening’ playlist which contains 412 of my favourite songs.

I prefer the songs to play in alphabetical order and I found I was working through songs that start with ‘F’.

If you think it would be only possible to pray when listening to a playlist of religious songs, you would be wrong. I believe you are able to pray while listening to popular songs, because the words can become meaningful when, with a little bit of imagination, they can be heard as a two-way conversation with your God.

Let me give you an example: First up halfway through the ‘F’ List was ‘Fire and Rain’, a James Taylor song.

I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain. I’ve seen sunny days I thought would never end.

I’ve seen lonely times when I could not find a friend, but I always thought I would see you again.

Look down upon me Jesus, you gotta help me make a stand, just got to see me through another day.

I can’t make it any other way.

Then came ‘The Flame’ by Cheap Trick:

Wherever you go, I’ll be with you. Whatever you want, I’ll give it to you.

Whenever you need someone to lay your heart and head upon, remember after the fire and all the rain, I will be your flame.

Next up, ‘Fly Like A Bird’ by Boz Scaggs.

Now the years have past and memories come and go. He hears that voice.

There’s peace at the end of the darkest night. Sometimes I cry, sometimes I fly like a bird.

Then comes ‘Follow Me’ by John Denver

Follow me where I go, what I do.

Let a part of you be a part of me.

Follow me up and down, all the way and all around.

Take my hand and say you’ll follow me.

I’ve tried to find a way that will make you understand, the way I feel about you, just how much I need you.

To be there when I can talk to when there is no one else around.  

You see I’d like to share my life with you and show you things I’ve seen.

Places where I’m going to, places where I’ve been.

To have you there beside me I’ll never be alone.

Then came ‘For My Lady’ by The Moody Blues.

My boat sails stormy seas, battles all storms ahead. At last, my port’s in view, I’ve arrived, discovered you.

Set sail before the sun. Feel the warmth has just begun.

Share each and every dream, that belongs to everyone.

Then a bit of country with ‘Forever and ever amen’ by Randy Travis

I’m gonna love you forever. Forever and ever amen.

As long as old men sit and talk about the weather,

As long as old women talk about old men.

If you wonder how long I’ll be faithful, I’ll be happy to tell you again.

I’m gonna love you forever and ever, forever and ever Amen.

When it was time to get back up and into action, the blood circulation was recharged as also was my prayer life. Can’t wait to take up this same position again tomorrow as there are still more songs from the ‘F’ group to come, namely Four Strong Winds by Neil Young; ‘Fraction too much Friction from Tim Finn and ‘Bette Midler’s From a Distance.

I wonder what else awaits as I progress further through the alphabet. My God sure gets me going through my music.

I’m Peter Mack and that’s how I feel

May 2021

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