WIN WITH JANSEN AUDIO: an exclusive SP giveaway
THE REAL ROB BELL: Literally the only NZ appearance NEIGHBOURS AT WAR: Israel, Palestine & the Gaza Strip HOPE FOR HAITI
Issue #35, July 2010 www.spmagazine.org
it takes heroic humility to be yourself aND to be NoboDy but the maN, or the artist, that GoD iNteNDeD you to be. thomas mertoN.
Contents THE REAL ROB BELL p.14 Our exclusive interview with the speaker, pastor and artist before his NZ tour was cancelled. His views on forgiveness, incarnational life, theology and living well. Plus unique insight to his creative process and whatâ€™s coming up.
NEIGHBOURS AT WARP.24 World writer Frank Ritchie examines the recent political history of the Israel/Palestine saga, to scratch beneath the surface of news reports and conflict coverage.
express yourself in sP magazine with words, pictures and art. Weâ€™re looking for writers, photographers, artists and thinkers to contribute to sP magazine in print and online. contact us online WWW.sPmaGaZiNe.orG
A LITTLE BIT OF SOUL p.33 Columnist & chaplain Jill Shaw talks about the gentle and diverse paths to helping someone in crisis.
Editor Tash McGill travelled to Haiti, capturing the destruction and hope of a nation living under the rubble of physical, spiritual, political and economic crisis in words and pictures.
Editorial p.4 ... bits & pieces p.5 ... Blogs p.6 ... semi-permenent p.7 ... food p.8 ... live p.9 ... health p.11 ... careers p.12 ... need to know p.28 ... Tertiary Chaplains p.32 ... Jargonology p.34
SP Magazine Issue 35 3
Publisher: Soul Purpose Charitable Trust Editor: Tash McGill firstname.lastname@example.org Contributing Writers: Frank Ritchie, Jon E Clist, Luke Phillip Oram, Caley Plinston, Andy Dickson, Jill Shaw, Tash McGill, Mandy Helton Jones Contributing Photographers: Tash McGill, Cairin Long, Mandy Helton Jones Advertising: Caley Plinston email@example.com | 09 630 7044 Design: Lewis Hurst, H Creative Ltd firstname.lastname@example.org PRINT & DISTRIBUTION: Ideal Print Ltd, Auckland www.idealprint.co.nz Formed as an incorporated charitable trust in August 1998, Soul Purpose Charitable Trust is an organisation dedicated to publishing (print, online, social media) positive, relevant and engaging material for New Zealand young people, on campus and throughout the country. Officially, we’re a non-profit youth media organization. Donate online or with the form in this magazine and help us spread the word. We hold fast to several things, two of which are: 1. We write and talk about what’s relevant, interesting, culturally & politically aware and entertaining. 2. SP are a group of Jesus followers, not associated with any denomination. For all the fine print stuff, see our Statement of Faith online. SP Magazine is a publication of the Soul Purpose Charitable Trust Inc. PO Box 8171, Symonds St, Auckland
jargonology Andy Dickson is a husband, a sportsman, a musician, a teacher and a scholar. Formerly of the band Calling Elijah, he now studies theology at Laidlaw College. Coincidentally, his mother frequently calls him SP. You can catch him writing this issue’s Jargonology column.
n the last two months I’ve clocked up their reliance on doing the best they can with a few unexpected airpoints. When the whatever we have to give them. call came to go to Haiti, it was the kind New Zealanders have a lot of practical skills of opportunity that I dream of. The kind and attitude to offer in that situation, in fact, of place where you feel like anything and in many aid situations. I think it comes down everything can make a difference, especially to living at the bottom of the world and having if my words and camera connect us as human to figure out smart, cost-effective and efficient beings, to something truthful and compelling solutions to problems. Plus, I think our multiin the midst of human suffering. ethnic society does us a world of favours when I’m not sure that I’ll ever have words for what it comes to cross-cultural communication and I saw in the short time I was there. There’s no respect. justice or restoration enough to wipe the tears I’ll remain forever blessed and grateful for of a ten thousand mothers crying for their the opportunity to spend time with some children, or families forced to live in tents on remarkable people and I hope to return. In the the grave of 150,000 Haitians. meantime, while “But if you are generous I’ve been speaking and NGOs, the UN and an sharing the stories in a few unstable, untrusted of heart, then be generous. places, churches and venues. Haitian government People who have lost The words that come fastest work on long-term everything rarely have to mind hit two subjects, that I development – we the kind of collateral to think are closely related. can and must help When you have everything with short-term purchase trust.” and someone has nothing, aid. SP Magazine asking them who can be trusted with whatever has teamed up with AIM, the organization I you’re offering is uncomfortable and insulting. travelled with, to ensure that 100% of your Time and time again, I’ve witnessed the lengthy donated funds are turned to valuable food and necessary process of establishing systems supplies for the Son of God orphanage. See the whereby aid can be distributed fairly for Haiti Travel Diary for details or email me tash@ long-term benefit. But if you are generous of spmagazine.org heart, then be generous. People who have lost As always – hope you enjoy the mag and we everything rarely have the kind of collateral look forward to hearing from you. to purchase trust. They have their word and
Trust and Justice
This is the time of the year film junkies are found eagerly circling the box office and promo booths in cities large and provincial, for it’s when the annual NZ Film Festival comes to town. Visit the website to plan your dream festival, then realize you can’t take all that time off study/work and select your favourites. We love the online schedule/email-your-friends option. Nifty. Purchase your tickets swiftly, they will be in hot demand, especially for the Incredibly Strange collection. Starting in Auckland July 8 – 25 then moving around the country til late November. www.nzff.co.nz
editor Tash McGill email@example.com
BITS AND PIECES
PH 09 630 7044 Email firstname.lastname@example.org © 2010 Soul Purpose Charitable Trust SP Magazine is subject to copyright in its entirety. The contents may not be reproduced in any form, either in whole or in part, without written permission from the publisher. All
rights reserved in material accepted for
Jill Shaw is on the Chaplaincy Services team at Massey University in Albany. As such, she is often in that space between the religious types who are skeptical of reason and the rational types who are skeptical of faith. Originally from America, she has lived in Zimbabwe before moving to New Zealand in the 1990s.
publication, unless initially specified otherwise. Please visit www.spmagazine.org for the reprint policy. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of Soul Purpose Charitable Trust, it’s board members or staff.
ARTSY & FARTSY Designers, illustrators and installation experts get their freak on August 20 & 21 in Auckland, for the annual Semi-Permanent event at Auckland’s Aotea Centre. Worth traveling to attend the melting pot of inspiration and creativity. Hear from legendary fashionista Karen Walker in a rare public appearance, and other local legends Dick Frizzell and son, Otis. (The Light Surgeons are my pick & must see. – Ed.) Students get a super discount rate of $150. www.semipermanent.co.nz
LT Funk have long been the upswing and beat-savvy, smoothtoned favourites of this office. Almost as lovely in person as they are onscreen, their first music video, made by the crew at Noggin Films has premiered on both networks. The tune is our favourite off the album, an iconic kiwi groove, so get on and request it on C4 www. c4.co.nz and on the radio as well aye?
DO YOUR THING
We all know finance and insurance companies love to sweet talk us – but AMP have struck a chord in the soft hearts of people up and down the nation with their Do Your Thing campaign. Any one can enter with a video and pitch about their passion and the thing they’d love an AMP Scholarship to help them achieve. Then it’s up to the punters to vote for their friends or just a cranking good idea. www.doyourthing.co.nz 5
o I met this guy when I was 16. He seemed kind of cool. Everyone seemed to know him. For the next 9 1/2 years of my life he has been a good friend, given me money when I’ve needed it, a shoulder to cry on, a person to talk to, I’ve even got angry at him. He is a pretty smart dude and I generally go to him for advice, but he started to get quite clingy. He always wants to be around, always telling me things that I don’t wanna hear, telling me to do things I don’t wanna do, wants to be everywhere I am. So I gave him the slip every now and again. He is a little bit out there, so I didn’t want him to come with me to parties or anything like that. Sometimes I gave him lots of crap behind his back, made jokes at his expense, which he knew I did. Yet he still calls himself my friend. I can’t shake him. Such a loyal dude. Its frustrating to say the least. He is a pain in the ass sometimes. Yet I still use him when I need him. Lately I’ve just given in and started to hang out with him more, I’ve invited him to parties and pretty much wherever I have gone. I am starting to appreciate his wisdom and I am starting to see that, while he might not be cool to the “status quo”, he is actually a really genuine dude, a real good person to have in my life. Its gotten to the point where I get pissed off when he’s not around, not in a gay way, but more in a way that he makes me think, he brings out the best in me. He pretty much is the man. Sucks its taken me 9 1/2 years to figure that out. Posted by Slummy at 3:07 PM http://thesehandsthisheart.blogspot.com
the light surgeons
My Friend, Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Each month thousands of Kiwi writers, potential writers, people worth listening to and admiring, as well as plenty worth ignoring cover the virtual walls of the internet with their mutterings, thoughts, ideas and inspiration. They’ve been gathered, catalogued and indexed here – so we recommend you check them out.
A collection of web verbage SP Magazine keeps it’s eye on.
FROM THE BLOGS
Auckland, 20 - 21 August, Aotea Centre, THE EDGE semipermanent.co.nz
BLOGS WE WATCH http://jiwanrai.blogspot.com/ http://thinkingforyou.co.nz http://wecanallbetontos.tumblr.com/
poke london 6
Winter is the season of soup and crusty fresh bread, slathered in butter. A great way to keep eating costs down, time efficient and vegetables in your system, soup is an essential for a student’s budget and a great way to cook to feed friends too. So here are the basics of delicious recipes. Keep a supply of chicken stock, onions and garlic in the pantry and you’ll be ready to make soup of just about anything.
NZ International Film Festival
AUG 12 – 29
Lido Cinema www.nzff.co.nz
JUL 21 – AUG 1
Manukau Sports Bowl www.zirkacircus.com
Altitude www.thefeelers.co.nz R18 – Standing General Admission
JUL 29 – AUG 1
ASB Show Grounds, Greenlane www.thefoodshow. co.nz
Smokefree Rockquest Finals
Founders Theatre www.sfrq.co.nz
Air New Zealand Foyer, Aotea Centre www.davewiggins. co.nz Free - Experience 11am and workshop 12pm
Wellington The NZ Film Festival JUL 16 – AUG 1
Christchurch All Blacks vs Australia AUG 7
BROCCOLI & CREAM CHEESE SOUP 1 small head of cauliflower florets chopped 1 litre chicken stock 1 large head of broccoli florets chopped 250g cream cheese 1 large onion 2 cloves of garlic or 2 tsp crushed garlic Finely chop the onion and garlic then fry in a little olive oil in the bottom of a large saucepan. Saute til transparent but not browned on a medium heat. Add chopped broccoli & cauliflower florets and cover with chicken stock. Bring to the boil on high then turn down and simmer til the vegetables are soft. Add cream cheese and stir through til melted through. Salt & pepper to taste. If you’re a blue cheese fan, add 50 – 100g to the soup at this point. Puree in a blender (cool first!) or use a stick blender. CHEATS TIP: Use a blend of broccoli & cauliflower from the supermarket freezer!
The Temper Trap
The Food Show
Finely chop the onion and garlic then fry in a little olive oil in the bottom of a large saucepan. Saute til transparent but not browned on a medium heat. Add the spices and stir, then add pumpkin, cubed into smallish pieces (5cm). Coat with the spice & onion paste, stirring gently. Add the rest of the vegetables then pour in chicken stock. Cover and turn temperature to low. Simmer for 60-90mins, stirring occasionally. Add the red wine (the alcohol will cook off) and basil, torn into small pieces. Salt & pepper to taste. If you like chunky, use a potato masher to breakup the pumpkin, potatoes and carrot. If you prefer smooth, use a stick blender. If you intend to use a regular blender, you’ll need to let the soup cool first.
Each of these recipes makes 4 – 6 serves, a great transportable lunch or quick dinner. Dump into freezer/microwave-safe containers and you can safely store in the fridge for a few days or in the freezer for a couple of months over winter!
1 small pumpkin, peeled and seeded 1 cup heavy red wine 1 large carrot 1 litre chicken stock 1 large kumara 1 tsp cumin power 1 large onion 1 tbsp curry powder 2 cloves of garlic or 2 tsp crushed garlic Fresh basil leaves for the end.
Just a smattering of live activities not to be missed in coming months.
PERFECT PUMPKIN SOUP
Cooking Winter Basics
things people culture world insight
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GUesT eD: sTePHen CHRIsTIAn, AnBeRLIn
Issue #34, MAY 2010
Soul Purpose Issue 34.indd 1
4/5/10 12:17:33 AM
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Colours are your guide here – stock up on colourful fruits and veges as well as the occasional glass of red wine or dark chocolate nibble. These are key sources of antioxidants as well as essential vitamins and minerals to maintain a healthy immune system.
1. YOUR INFORMATION
Don’t want to pay a fortune for vitamin tablets? Bananas, potatoes and tuna are key sources of B complex, useful to help fight off infection, deal with stress and boost immunity.
The US Mayo Clinic has put this remedy to the test and found it may help relieve cold and flu symptoms as it acts as an antiinflammatory and may relieve congestion.
You might think of summer as dehydration station, but keep the fluids especially water on the in. Air conditioning, cold windy blasts and the frosty air itself can zap moisture from your skin and your body needs it to fight off phlegm and fever.
No more excuses: if you have a cold, exercise gently, but still exercise – it’ll keep you generally active, warm on a cold morning and energized despite the desire to stay curled up in bed!
Suffering from congestion? Try a super-powered hot shower or bowl of near-boiling water. The steam helps clear stuffy sinuses, especially with a few drops of eucalyptus oil.
You may not like needles, but having a shot is the best way to avoid getting the flu, says the South Australian Department of Health. Evidence shows the flu vaccine gives up to 90 per cent of protection in healthy people. Still not convinced? Check out our last health column on the jab, online. www.spmagazine.org
Yes, the good old-fashioned solution your Nana knitted you. Make sure it’s the real thing though – synthetics (unless it’s polyprop) don’t do half the job Nana’s woolies do. Keeping your core body temperature up, keeps bugs away.
Ward off nasty lurgies by brewing a pot of green tea. Several recent studies have found that catechin, a type of antioxidant contained in this tea, is effective in preventing the flu.
An old-fashioned, hard-to-stomach but effective sore throat remedy, gargle with salt water for temporary relief. Add half a teaspoon of salt and stir in a glass of warm water. Our guinea pig suggests a teaspoon of honey on standby for afterwards!
The best way to prevent the spread of germs is by covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Don’t re-use them. The one time we won’t tell you to recycle!
Thermal underwear insulates the body by creating a small space of air next to the skin keeping your core temperature steady. Not fashionable, but a necessity for the lower latitudes.
Enjoy a good chuckle often, as more studies are finding laughter may raise infectionfighting antibodies in your system and boost immune cell levels. And it’s dreary, cold and miserable outside – so we all need a laugh. Best to do it in company, they say social isolation can lower your immunity as well.
This is the perfect winter super food as it’s rich in selenium (good for fighting flu) and vitamins, or you may prefer broccoli which contains nearly every vitamin you might need too! Check out our recipes on pg .
The A-Skip a Few-Z Guide to Winter Health (On A Budget!)
If you’re a youth pastor, leader, shop owner or simply would like to receive bulk copies of SP Magazine each time it’s printed, simply complete the form. We ask for a standard donation of $1- 2 a copy to help us cover costs.
ight now SP Magazine is communicating hope to people all over New Zealand, entertaining, inspiring and offering insight from a faith-based perspective to the students, young workers and young people who will shape our country’s future. What they read and look at often determines their own. SP Magazine is committed to being relevant to all aspects of life and offering an open door to matters of faith, spirituality and what it means to be a human being for all young people in Aotearoa. For us to continue producing SP Magazine online and in print, we need your help. From supporting regularly to making a one-off donation, it all makes a difference regardless of how insignificant you think your gift might be. We need your help to continue the work of SP Magazine. You can donate to Soul Purpose securely online via Credit Card, through bank transfer or simply mailing us a cheque. All donations $5 and above are eligible for a tax rebate. To thank you for your donation, we will also keep you in the loop by sending you a copy of the magazine each time it comes out.
Illness-fighting probiotics in yoghurt, miso and fermented cheese help boost ‘good’ bacteria in your gut.
Put out those cigarettes for good, as the risk of respiratory infections is increased by regular exposure to cigarette smoke.
A study found people with low vitamin D levels may have more colds or cases of the flu. So get outdoors as the sun’s UV rays are a good natural source of vitamin D – but still protect your skin!
ash your hands
Washing your hands with soap often during the day really is one of the simplest ways to stop the spread of germs.
Sleep well. A US study found those who get less than seven hours of sleep a night have a greater risk of developing respiratory illness. 11
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FIGHT CLUB FOR FAITH: THe InTeRvIew wITH DAve TOmLInsOn FLU FIGHTeRs TeAm AmeRICA: sUPeRPOweR
AMANDA HELTON (Outdoor Instructor)
Making a Difference in the Big Outdoors “
Look at all the trees!” the young boy exclaims as he stumbles out of the car with his classmates. “I’ve never seen this many trees. Are they real?” Working in the outdoor adventure industry, these kinds of reactions are frequent and sometimes entertaining, but they speak to an overall gap in the spiritual education and development of our youth. There are no shortage of statistics regarding hours spent online and in front of the TV and correlations between those statistics with obesity and diseases like diabetes. These shifts in our culture lifestyles bring with them no shortage of handwringing from all sides. I cannot say with any definitive authority if sedentary behavior, helicopter parents, or processed food will be the downfall of our youth, but I do know one thing: God’s creation is, as Romans 1:20 proclaims, the place where His divinity can be clearly seen. In nature exists a place where we can be challenged, changed and overcome with the presence and majesty of our own creator. I am drawn to outdoor ministry because I cannot compete with God’s own testimony about himself in creation. When it comes to playing a leadership role in the spiritual awareness and development of youth, or 12
making a difference in their confidence and if they feel vulnerable or uncomfortable they awareness, taking kids out of their comfort have to deal with that feeling then and there as zone every day is a life-changing job. the wind pushes at their backs and cold water When I lead a group on a backpacking trip or gives them goosebumps. They can’t look down take them whitewater rafting or teach them at their phone or disengage by putting their how to rock climb for the first time, the pieces headphones back in. Sometimes, facing that begin to fall into place. The awe and wonder discomfort and being present in a whole new they experience as their eyes are opened to a way means that for the first time, they see God. bigger picture than they are accustomed to – They begin to have the tiniest shadowy glimpse bigger than an online profile, a list of numbers of the reality of His divinity. I’ve witnessed in a cell phone, bigger than an outline of a enough life changing moments of spiritual sermon abandoned progression to keep me www.outwardbound.co.nz on a pew – opens up endlessly motivated about www.christiancamping.org.nz getting kids outside and our conversations and observations about engaged with their Creator www.adventurejobs.co.nz the world God has and each other. given us, trees, people and all. Craig Lomax, As important as it is to remain culturally and Executive Director of the youth adventure technologically relevant with young people, camp Rock-N-Water, puts it this way, “It’s the perhaps our greatest resource is that which we only platform I know where you can challenge can so easily insulate ourselves from: God’s students emotionally, physically, socially and own masterpiece. Working in the outdoors and spiritually—all at the same time.” with people is where my faith falls into place. It has become a reality that the majority of the It makes sense to lead others through this students coming here to go rafting and rockexperience. It’s not that I don’t find meaning climbing are not accustomed to spending much and community through technology or in time at all outside. As one of my co-workers modern living. It’s simply that the merging of likes to say, being active outdoors “interrupts” nature, physical and personal challenge is a them. It removes them from their routine and life-changing career path.
...mere servants of christ who have been put in charge of explaining god's mysteries... 1 Colossians 4:1—4 For more inFormation get online & take a look at our website www.sim.org.nz or write us an email email@example.com or give us a call Freephone on 0508 47 46 69
We spoke with the pastor & artist about what he’s working on now, navigating controversy and living as well as you can in the midst of life. Turns out not only is this the exclusive interview but the only appearance Rob Bell will make in NZ in 2010.
TM: What part of the story arc of your own life do you find yourself in right now? RB: I’m in the part of the story where it’s just pure joy. We had a baby last year so we have a year old daughter, and my boys are 10 & 12 years old. Spring has just sprung in Michigan so everything has just gone from brown to vibrant pulsating green. I’m sitting in my yard and the dog is sitting in the grass next to me. So this period of life and this season, the past couple of years has been, umm – better than I could imagine. It was... quite difficult there for a while, trying to sort through how to – what my path was supposed to look like. So we made lots of changes and lots of people helped us sort through what the next period of life would look like. And it’s been everything I could’ve hoped for. So I don’t know (laughs), it’s the part of the story where everything is humming, everything is great. (Straight away it’s clear, that Rob is being true to self – long, rambling sentences with hyperbolic use of adjectives, ongoing repetition and rephrasing until the intention of each sentence is 14
emotive and clear.) TM: What were the things that were troublesome, that you had to work through to make it to the season of joy? RB: Well, my wife and I and some friends; we started a church about 11 years ago, called Mars Hill. And all I ever really wanted to do was create things and share them with people, um.. teachings, films, books. And when we started the church, in a matter of, well – no time, I was the lead pastor with all the responsibilities that come with that. Of running an organization, and I’m terrible at that. (Laughs). But it forced this fundamental conflict within me because there was lots of pressure and lots of voices saying “You need to run this place”. So there were 10 staff, 20 staff, 25 staff, 30, 35 staff. 1000 volunteers, 1500 volunteers, 1600 volunteers – you know what I mean? TM: Hmm, yeah – I do. A lot of pressure. RB: That takes a particular type of person, to run an organization like that well. And that’s not me. So, I sort of had all these different hats I was wearing. And the whole time my true self was very aware that there is this one thing that I do, and that’s it. That’s what I do and the other things, someone else does those and that’s how
it’s meant to work. So being honest about that and pursuing a life that looks like that. Letting other people do all the other things – it took a while but it has been absolutely brilliant. So now, I make things, write books and make films. TM: So this is more life-giving than before? RB: Yes! And that is a long process when you’re in one place to move to another particular place: because of people’s expectations, because of all the guilt we have – that we’re supposed to be able to do it all, because of all of the ego that doesn’t want to admit it’s own limits, all of the ways in which we’ve been sent messages about our worth and our value, our strength, whether or not you’re doing enough – all that work ethic stuff. And so just to be able to pursue... undivided life that I knew was possible took a ferocious amount of tenacity and perseverance but it’s been incredible. TM: In the States, you’re both loved and – (I struggled for a word but chose) disregarded, by others.. RB: (Chuckles). TM: But in New Zealand, tickets sold out within a matter of days, even hours. What I’m getting at is what I see – having been in the US and coming home here – is that there’s a much more vocal
their approach or understanding of spirituality give for someone else – that will always be and the Gospel message, and what you think, interesting, it will always draw people in and it what’s it’s like speaking to us as an audience? will always be compelling. How do we respond differently than other TM: It seems it’s a lot easier, in a number of audiences? organisations or churches, to encourage people RB: What’s interesting – the real question is into systematic ways of working on the external where does the authority lie? In American appearance of holiness. Whereas you’re talking culture for the last generation, for a number of about someone who is genuinely forgiving – is people if you said, “The Bible says”, that’s all going to have a revolutionary presence, you they needed. You know what I mean? If the Bible said – and possibly even regardless of whatever says, then oh, I’ll do it. There was an assumed their faith tradition or background is. My authority from the Scriptures and the Christian question is – maybe even less from the pulpit tradition. The question becomes – what do you and more from being embedded in a community do when you find yourself in a culture where the of people – how do you see people making that Bible and the traditional Christian voice simply shift from pursuing a systematic programme has no authority? towards holiness versus and holy incarnation So, in a culture like Britain, NZ and Australia of something divine coming from the depths of – there are millions of people for whom “The their being. Bible says”, doesn’t mean anything. What RB: Well, (pause) – the first thing is learning happens when you are in a church then, is you to read your own interiors and understanding have to ask – where does our authority come what’s happening in the most intimate places from? To speak this news of a crucified and of your being. So a couple of questions that are resurrected Christ. easy to ask. “So, in a culture like You realize then it When someone provokes has to come from me and when I find myself Britain, NZ and Australia our incarnation. The infuriated, frustrated, repulsed there are millions of people by somebody – the first question degree to which for whom “The Bible says”, to ask is not “How can I change we are broken and poured out to be a them?” but “What is it within me doesn’t mean anything.” blessing to this city, that so violently reacts against town, village, neighbourhood. What does it look them?”. Often what makes us most upset in like for a church to see itself as a Eucharist, a others is actually what we are most terrified good gift to it’s city, it’s community? What does may be true about ourselves. So you’ll often it look like for us to give the gift of ourselves to find the moral police, who are going around this place and to serve and love these people as condemning others – are driven by a deep dread Christ would serve and love them. That is a very of their own interiors and their own darkness. compelling question. So I find that discussion The counter-intuitive, exuberant blessing of going on in very vibrant ways (in NZ and other the Gospel is Jesus says you are blessed in your places). We used to be able to get people’s light, but also in your dark. You are blessed attention just by saying certain things but that in your faith, but also in your doubt. God can doesn’t work anymore. So how now, do we handle it all. So when your darkest places are become a voice in culture? Well, apparently our embraced and loved with God’s love and the only option now is to actually be like Christ... love of Christ, then there’s nothing left to fear (chuckles). and nothing to run from. No need to label others And that demands a sort of courage and and no need to demonize others, creating fidelity and cost and creativity and intelligence categories for how awful other – that’s a very different discussion from “We people are. are right, we have the doctrine to prove it and What we find is that often, religion can just how do we get people to believe the things become a way to manage your own darkness. we’ve decided they need to believe?”. You see So we’re right, they’re wrong, we’re holy, what I mean? These are very different types of they’re not. As long as you can come and do discussions. this, believe this, recite this and say this – hey, TM: Let me ask you honestly, do you think everything’s good. Jesus points out again and that (in a generalization) – do you feel that the again and again, that it’s possible to have the Gospel message in that incarnational life, is external forms and yet you, at your deepest becoming more visible and more poignant in places are fundamentally unaffected. So the one culture over another? Say, in New Zealand journey to wholeness, to shalom (the peace of versus America? God), is this journey into realizing that God is RB: I think it’s always (pause), always brilliant – love and God is the ground of your being. The whenever you find a vibrant Christ-voice that is kingdom is in you, among you, surrounds you. kind and loving and forgiving and peacemaking, Jacob wakes up and says, “God was in this wherever you find that voice – you will find life. place the whole time, and I didn’t realise it.” It could be in the most traditional, conservative Sometimes what happens is churches or faith setting – someone who forgives is always going communities develop whole systems where to have a revolutionary presence. Someone who people are striving, trying to get somewhere, moves towards their enemies in love, somebody there are steps, “if I could just..”, and it ends up who is honest about their own darkness and being work. It’s labour. It’s a heavy burden and owns their darkness, who is on their own Jesus keeps speaking of a reality that’s as close inwards path themselves towards wholeness, as your breath. The word for Spirit is breath. So their own cleansing, their own journey into an stop, stop, pause – slow down. You are loved integrated life – THAT will always be compelling. infinitely, exactly as you are. Someone who is prepared to sacrificially And what can also happen then is evangelism
spectrum of response to who Rob Bell is and what he talks about in the US, than here. So I wonder, if you can talk to me about what it’s like to be a celebrated controversy, what that stirs up in you as you make things and send them into the world for people to respond to? RB: That is an awesome question, there’s like 4 or 5 things in there I could respond to.. TM: Well, I figure that’s a good way to do it.. you can take your pick... RB: .. just lay it all out there and I can pick and choose – or pick all of them in a particular order. TM: Exactly. RB: My experience when I was in NZ several years ago, and in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales where we were a couple of weeks ago – is that when you as a Christian, are in a significant minority in the population – when the culture is in some ways post-Christian, then you have to revisit what the message even is and what does it look like to speak to people in a language that they can even understand. What does it look like to compellingly communicate in a culture where the old reference points aren’t even there anymore? And I set out to compellingly communicate Jesus to people who aren’t listening, and in America there are a large number of people who have created a large subculture that works for them. They have their own books, films, churches, radio and the system works for them. So I never set out to speak to them. You know what I mean? So I find when I am in settings in which the assumed Christian culture is NOT present, there is great resonance. Like, YES! This is what we are doing. I never set out to make comfortable Christians, comfortable-er. (Chuckles). That never really interested me. But there’s millions and millions of people who are intrigued by Jesus and want nothing to do with the Christian packages they’ve seen. So I’m out to gain a fresh hearing for Jesus. (Pause. His tone is warm and soft.) And that might look different. It might use different metaphors, different language. It might approach things in all sorts of different ways. Number 2, (his tone lifts) – I’ve never said anything new or particularly fresh. There’s nothing in the historic, Orthodox Christian tradition, umm – it’s a big wide stream we are swimming in, and a wide spectrum of ways people have understood what it’s meant to follow Jesus in an authentic, Orthodox kinda way. So, anybody who thinks that what I’m doing is somehow controversial or unorthodox, well – I’ve never really said anything new. And the real question is – when you are misunderstood or criticized – do you become bitter and cynical and start throwing stones back? Or does it break you and you become more kind and more generous and more loving and more inviting? And that’s always the choice that we have.... will we become more Christ-like or will we become more volatile and combative. So I’ve always tried to ask the harder questions about what’s going on with my own heart. TM: So the reader question “Who would win in a face-off between you and Mark Driscoll over the real Mars Hill”, is entirely inappropriate? RB: (Laughing.. continued laughing). TM: Good, I’m glad you’re laughing. So what have you learned about New Zealanders and
into well-constructed thoughts. Since then, Bell has been referred to as the “new Billy Graham” by some and as a heretic by others, largely due to his shades of grey around key doctrines for conservative Evangelicals. Bell affirms things as truth regardless of the source, saying “I affirm the truth anywhere in any religious system, in any worldview. If it’s true, it belongs to God.” His appearances at inter-faith events has caused outbursts and backlash, not to mention countless blogs, articles and other pastors who take issue with various aspects of his writing or films from the pulpit or even YouTube. However, he acknowledges Scripture as the authoritative source of truth by which to compare all other truths in the Mars Hill Bible Church statement of narrative theology. I’m thinking about all these things as I dial Rob’s cell number, early on a Saturday morning. He answers with the same steady, well-paced accent I remember and we chat idly for a few minutes until getting down to the nitty-gritty. The set-up is simple enough; just a conversation about where things are at, what he’s looking forward to and working on... and how he’s framed some of the intense controversy he’s had to wade through in the last few years.
Rob Bell Celebrated Controversy
t’s 2004, in a sweltering late summer in LA. Sitting in an airconditioned yet impossibly sticky hotel meeting room. It’s a one and half day course with one of the new wunderkind of the American Christian scene. Rob Bell’s ‘nooma’ DVDs were the most innovative piece of multimedia available (at that time 7, there would be 24 editions by 2009), which we purchased with glee and brought back to NZ in our over-full luggage. At a time when the Emergent Church conversation was also trying to engage with culture in fresh and inspiring expressions, Bell has been a pioneer from the more orthodox Evangelical side, examining not just what we communicate but how we communicate. Now, media company Flannel (producer of Nooma) is creating a new series of stories and Bell continues to write – but now books and DVDs (see footnote) of his various speaking tours. I scribbled in my notebook, everything from commentary on how Bell was speaking in a very different way that he preaches, to his bleachedblonde uber-trendy hair and thick-rimmed glasses and including his diagrams, scribbled sprawling on the whiteboard describing his incredible process of collecting and dissecting information and ideas
FOOTNOTES Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith (Zondervan, 2005) Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections between Sexuality and Spirituality (Zondervan, 2007) Everything is Spiritual (DVD) (Zondervan, 2007) The Gods Aren’t Angry (DVD) (Flannel, 2008 (June)) Jesus Wants to Save Christians: A Manifesto for the Church in Exile (Zondervan, 2008 (October)) Drops Like Stars (Zondervan, 2009)
On what he does for fun
“I play soccer, once or twice a week. Wednesday at lunch and Friday mornings at 6am. I have music equipment at my house, there’s drums in the basement and a couple of guitars. So I make noise.. on instruments (see above) and I love barefoot waterskiing. I’m really into waterskiing.” (In fact, at one summer camp job, Rob paid the bills by teaching kids to waterski - Ed.).
If there was only one artist to listen to til the end of time?
While he was at Wheaton College (a wellregarded Evangelical Christian college), Bell was part of the indie rock band, “_ton bundle”. They likened themselves to REM and the Talking Heads. This is when _ton bundle wrote the song “Velvet Elvis,” based upon the same painting that he used in his first book. He graduated in 1992, going on to be a youth pastor in California for a time, before moving to Grand Rapids, Michigan to be near family.
On long ago
people, like we’re about to release the films, so I’ll probably meet with someone who will tell me how that’s going. There are wonderful people around me who handle lots of details and stuff. But for us, if it’s not sustainable or life-giving and there isn’t plenty of time to do the few things that matter the most, to do those things well – then there’s no point going out and talking to people about the peace of Christ. So we’ve tried to set up our life that way. And it brings me great joy. So whatever I share is the overflow. So yeah, I’m interested in quantum physics and I’m reading a collection of Bob Dylan’s interviews and I think the British comedian Eddie Izzard is the most brilliant ever, and I’m writing a play about four mountain climbers and like, huh – there’s always a number of things rumbling around in my head, (laughs). TM: So back in the class I was at in 2004, you talked about collecting little pieces, little boxes of thoughts along the way ... before eventually they get threaded together in a way that makes sense. RB: Oh yeah, yeah ... There are documents on my computer and there are 3x5 cards and there are posterboards and there are giant ... different content takes on different forms. I did a tour a couple of years back called ‘Everything is Spiritual’, which was this sort of string theory, quantum physics, dimensional perspective sort of thing and the other day I started thinking about ‘Everything is Spiritual’ part two (laughs) and so that has a notebook, with a sense of what part two will look like, and it’s making me laugh ... just that it’s part two, like he’s back with another one! So my wife and I have been talking about doing a book on marriage so that has a stack of 3x5 cards. TM: How on earth do you know what form the content is going to take – what needs a 3x5, what feels like a notebook? (Laughing). RB: Well, everything just sort of arrives as it is and I guess, intuitively you just figure out how it needs to be organized. (Laughs). Certain things you just know what it is. The way that it comes makes sense. Then there are things I’ve been working on forever, that are just sitting there until one day, away you go and you know what that is. There’s like a half of a book, on the way to a whole book. It’s just sitting on my computer but I don’t know what it needs (Laughs) ... so I could have it sitting in there forever and then one day I’ll realize, oh I know what that needs. Then it will be done. I’ve stopped trying to figure it out (chuckles). TM: So you talk a lot about making things. Not that we like labels, but if we had to boil it down to one thing, would you call yourself an artist, would it be a writer? RB: Yeah I think wherever I would go, I assume I would be in a local church and that would be my home base so that’s part of it. Those people have been good to me. I don’t know what I would... somewhere between a pastor and an artist seems to be... partist (chuckles). TM: I wasn’t going to make that joke, I was just gonna let you take it. RB: (Still laughing) ... that is a terrible joke. Please edit that out, or at least say that I said, to edit it out! I said that as I’m laughing of course, so bad it’s good.
happens is a lot of people get into this world where all they can do is debate the definition, the precision, the technical title and what Jesus does, is doesn’t bring a system, an A-B-C philosophy. He says, well, it’s like a son who said to his father give me half of my inheritance, it’s like a farmer who planted some seeds, it’s like an owner of a vineyard, like a treasure that was found in a field... (chuckles) He has these lyrical bursts, these parables. He asks lots of questions – so I would start there. In terms of reconciling systems, maybe that’s important for some but I think there are other things more interesting. TM: So in terms of more interesting things – as you get older, and you’ve made these changes we were speaking about earlier – what do you find yourself doing more of than what you did before? What are you doing differently? RB: I find myself spending more time alone in contemplative prayer than I used to. We live on the edge of a woods, and I will take a chair into the woods for a half day at a time. And I will spend whole days in silence, then pick up my kids and things get loud quite quickly! (Laughs). I wake up and my daughter’s diaper needs changing and my sons need breakfast. Then I take the boys to school, and I take my daughter in a backpack on my back and we take the dog for a walk through the woods. Then I pick the boys up from school and we have a family dinner. For me – I find the divine in the everyday. Making my boys lunches before they go to school, that’s like top of the mountain for me. So for my wife and I, we have arranged our life around the peace of God. We take a Sabbath on Saturdays, we play, no one does any work. We just feed our souls. We ask what would be the most fun, joyous, restorative things we could do today. So we have tried to set up a rhythm of life that works and is sustainable, keeps us grounded and centered. So anything that I would do outside of this life we’ve created – any tours or books – it has to come from the overflow of the daily routines and rituals that my family has, the rhythms that give us life. So I’m working on a couple of books, we’re just working on a new film, we’re just about to release a whole series of films that we shot last year, 5 hours of films we’re about to release; so – yeah. I absolutely love the writing. The first half of the day, once I’ve dropped the kids at school and we go for a walk in the woods, the first half of the day is I’m alone and I’m writing. I’m just hunting down whatever is the next thing I’m making. If it’s a novel, a tour, a sermon coming up – I’m just following that and wherever it needs to go, wherever that is. I might spend a whole morning just typing one page, just thinking it through, sitting with it, retyping it, being fully present with it and giving it whatever it needs. And then usually the second part of the day, until I pick the kids up from school – I usually meet with different
people culture world insight
can feed into this destructive impulse, because around someone who has a stillness of soul, group of Christians who make sure that these it teaches people “It’s a free gift... all you when you’re around somebody who clearly people, who have been forgotten – and there is have to do is..”, so we’ve created another isn’t trying – you are captivated. When you no money for their burial, they go in and they sit whole system of work as opposed to an realise, this person is saying this not because with these people in the last moments of their announcement, “You are loved exactly as you they are trying to win me over and not because lives. From out of their own pockets they pay to are, you are embraced by a loving Heavenly they need me to applaud and like them; they make sure these people get a proper, respectful, Father – who is love.” That’s good news, that’s are saying this because it is simply spilling out dignified burial. what that is. But it’s very easy for religion to of their very being. You are captured in a very And then there is a tutoring programme a work against the life that Jesus invited us into. different way than someone who woos you with couple of miles from my house, in an underAnd you find people working this out in all how brilliant they are. resourced neighbourhood here. They found in sorts of different ways, they go to the poor, they So I think we have to, first, come to the end this city, there is a direct correlation between go overseas, they study the Bible. All of these of our desire to control people (in the sense of the population of the jail and whether or not things are done and they can be wonderful, evangelism), we never had that in the first place, kids learn to read in the public school system. but sometimes they are done because we are it’s all an illusion. And The literacy rate and the desperately trying to arrive to someplace, when often times what happens population of the jail “...because of people’s the truth is we are already there. It’s here, as is when people sense this are directly related. If a expectations, because of all close as your breath. I think this is why Paul anyway, they rebel in all kid learns to read, the the guilt we have - that we’re odds they will graduate says his prayer for them is “that the eyes of sorts of subversive ways. supposed to be able to do it their heart would be enlightened”. Such an When they sense that a high school and not interesting phrase. And actually the mystics, person is trying to push commit crime drastically all, because of all of the ego in the mystic tradition, always centered on them in a certain way. This changes. that doesn’t want to admit seeing. Just seeing. You are invited to just have happens with parents and So I would probably it’s own limits .. so just to be begin with flesh and your eyes be opened again and again to what’s students all the time. The already here, already now, already among you, parent is such an anxious blood. The world is able to pursue... undivided already upon you. presence in the student’s life that I knew was possible really, really in trouble. That’s a long sermon I just gave, but I get life, that the student And there is massive, took a ferocious amount of thrilled about such things. quickly figures out how to epic suffering. One tenacity and perseverance TM: The place I keep coming back to – because manage the parent. How to billion people don’t I so much want to change this, to make it easier give lip service to Mom and but it’s been incredible. “ have access to clean for people to know that there is a better way Dad, how to jump through drinking water. That of being, of seeing, a deeper way of coming to the proper hoops to keep them off their back. Jesus, when he speaks of real, true life – the understand what life here looks like, can look But Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount, again kind that pulsates, the kind that hums, the kind like, can be – I continually come back to how and again is actually teaching us how to be a that sustains you – he doesn’t speak about can I make that happen, how can I make that non-anxious presence with people. And giving Calvin. I don’t think Jesus mentions Calvin be? I stumble, because I don’t want to demonize people advice, “I’m gonna give them advice once. And he doesn’t use the word emergent. Western culture entirely, but there is a sense because then I’m off the hook. And if they take But he does talk about taking whatever you’ve then that religion is a bit of a product. That’s it, it proves I was right and if they don’t, well at been given and giving it back, and breaking there’s an individuality to us that if this is what least I did my part.” So sometimes people are yourself open and pouring yourself out so it is, and in some places we are still dissatisfied, in another person’s life, giving them advice and that the suffering of others can be alleviated. that this could be it but it can still be so hard it’s actually an effort NOT to become involved And whenever the Jesus movement gets and so challenging to who we are. but simply be present with the person. bogged down in endless sorts of systems and RB: First, we have to come to terms with our And that’s a whole other sermon (more philosophies – I love to study all that stuff – but inability to change people. We have to own chuckling..). Jesus didn’t say that the highest form was a up to our limits. We are fundamentally not in TM: One of the questions that was submitted thought, he said the highest form was flesh control of other people. Sometimes the impulse was from a philosophy student. He’s working and blood. That’s when you’re cooking. The is actually rooted in in the framework of Word took on flesh, it didn’t take on a system of “That an incarnated an unreal expectation philosophy. He’s moved philosophy. presence is the sort of of reality, that we can from a theological (On emergent and hyper-Calvinism) I’m not somehow get people sure I’ve ever used that word or subscribed to presence that draws people, viewpoint that would be to something. That’s called hyper-Calvinism but that label. I’m not aware of that. And hypercreates a hunger in them absolutely not true. So recently has been reading Calvinism, that just sounds exhausting to me. for things they didn’t know (It’s true. Rob Bell is often associated with in the great Wisdom some of the Emergent the Emergent label, probably because of his tradition, it’s always they were hungry for. Which streams of thought around dialogues and friendships with some of the assumed that you cannot is why when you’re around how Church and theology Emergent posterboys, but he himself, is not change people. You is changing. He’s trying to someone who has a stillness find a way of reading the and has not been, “emergent”. There is a can simply, in your own of soul, when you’re around Scriptures that doesn’t connectedness between the use of creativity being, witness to the and art to reframe and adapt the way we reality you have woken somebody who clearly isn’t discard the importance of communicate.) up to. So I am unable to a theological system but trying - you are captivated.” RB: Language is useful for lots of things and my change anybody – all I takes into account the shifts observation of lots of technical, theological, can do is give the gift of in church thinking. It seems philosophical discussion is that language is that moment and whatever that looks like. he’s looking for a theological system from the useful in those particular arenas, when it’s So often times, especially pastoral work, can Emergent church, trying to hold the two things used for definition. So language is to be used to easily become rooted in a belief that people together. define, label, categorize and analyze things. So can be controlled or manipulated towards belief RB: Wow. That is confusing. Wow – for him, that for our friend, in the world that he is in, that’s or certain outcomes and as my wife often says, sounds like an awful burden to have all those what language does. It names and analyzes and for some people where they are at works for labels, categories and systems. I would want defines. them, and you cannot take people where they to take him to a village in South Africa where But in the Scriptures, language is used for don’t want to go. That an incarnated presence is 27% of the people have HIV/AIDS and I would all sorts of things. It’s poetry, it’s innuendo, the sort of presence that draws people, creates love for him to just spend time in this village, euphemism, parable, image, picture, song, a hunger in them for things they didn’t know where in a number of the shacks are people lament, psalm. You know what I mean? So what they were hungry for. Which is why when you’re each day who die from AIDS. And there are a
“I’m a huge Midnight Oil fan, not in any way trying to score points with the locals (Midnight Oil are a bigtime Australian band - Ed.). I am an absolute die-hard Midnight Oil fan. I also love a British band called Doves, they are extraordinary. I just saw Muse the other night, I could listen to Muse with a smile on my face for hours on end. I could go on for a while on that one. But if I was going to choose just one, that I could listen to for the rest of my life, I think body of work would factor in .. there would need to be an extensive back catalogue (laughing).”
ON THE CANCELLED NZ TOUR
Just a couple of short weeks before his scheduled appearance and the basis of this interview, the following message was posted on Rob’s website. Unfortunately, for reasons that remain unclear, but also maddeningly frustrating to all concerned – the tour was cancelled. So, here’s to next time. From robbell.com 06/07/10 Dear Australia/New Zealand friends, I’m thoroughly disappointed to tell you I won’t be coming on tour this June due to a number of factors. For those of you who have made plans, my apologies for any inconveniencetickets will be refunded, of course. And yes, I will get there in the near future-these things are quite complicated as you can imagine and full of surprises, some of them maddeningly frustrating. In the meantime, be on the lookout for the Drops Like Stars tour film, you’ll be the first to find out when it’s released. Enjoy. Thanks for understanding. Grace and peace, rob 17
photo essay: haiti
photographer tash mcgill
Observations and conversations in Haiti, first published from the field on www.tashmcgill.com A Series Of Moments In No Chronological Order, Called Today. A half-deflated soccerball is just about as precious as food. Boys are still boys and a game of soccer in a corner of tent city is almost a relief to watch. That something normal remains. As we drive past the airport and past the enormous UN presence, it’s easy to understand why the people have such animosity towards them, the great towering fences and serious faces. Through the market area, amidst garbage piles and mud there are clothes, shoes and produce for sale, sometimes it’s hard to tell where the garbage pile and the market line cross over. Driving past a building with a second storey pane of glass hanging by a corner over a busy street below, I think it’s just like a raindrop at full of despair because the permanency of the aggressive, far less welcoming and expressive. the end of a leaf. Hard to catch and hard to situation becomes clear. The tents are much worse off - they are still know when it will fall. As we walk down the hill into the first city, stick construction with tarps where possible. In the ominous heat that signals the rain will Beethoven comes swooping past, taking The NGOs have the best of intentions but we arrive at some point today, the smell of decay Seth’s hand and then climbing up into his saw one arrive with a medical supply handout, and dust sits all the way back in my throat. arms. Beethoven was happy to sit with us apparently they are not working with the The people grim-faced as we pass them in the for the entire time we were there some four community leaders, the committee. The people markets. hours. He’s about 5 years old, with quiet and were full of anxiety and mistrust. There were We drive intense eyes. people almost to the point of riot, with lots of “In the ominous heat that signals the through another The committee angry voices and escalating tone. massive tent leader explained, So, one camp is better and the other is much rain will arrive at some point today, the city, raised up as he fell asleep worse off. Neither have food but after a long, smell of decay and dust sits all the way on about 4 feet on Seth’s lap, long conversation it becomes apparent that the back in my throat. The people grim-faced he was falling of rubble. The answer can’t be simply providing food. There as we pass them in the markets.” limestone and asleep because has to be the opportunity for development and cinderblock is he hadn’t eaten education, some sort of economic development broken into pieces, everything looks white anything. There is no food. And while his for long term benefit. and the tents are orderly and almost beautiful embrace and trust of Seth and us is sweet and On the way back, I jump into the back of the in the monochrome for a moment. Marcio is endearing - the truth is it points to attachment pickup/ute. It’s the most freeing place I’ve been driving and explains that tent city sits on top issues and in likelihood some development all week. All of a sudden I am in it. The smell, of the mass gravesite. They buried more than issues. This is heartbreaking. the heat, the conversation with people on the 150,000 bodies in that grave, piling the rubble Marassa #14 feels permanent and organized, side of the street. The stares, the smiles and the of their houses on top of them. reassuring that connection with “But it could be paradise. The way the people as we went Life continues on, one life on top of another. there is so much But the cars don’t honk, the tent city is quiet motivation despite sun sets, the curve of the main bay, the past. At times very and the people are somber beside the grave the lack of food. slowly. The drive magnificence of the mountains. The site. But the internal back took what felt sway of palm trees, the glorious heat.” like a couple of Approaching Marassa, my heart is in my politics become throat, anxious to see what my friends saw, obvious between hours and through nervous in case it’s worse than when they were the two camps. So much work to be done here, the devastation of the city. here before. Initially what I see are rows of in terms of relationship and development. Feels like the whole place is hanging by a tents in orderly fashion. Beyond that I see more Marassa #9 is chaotic, despairing, much worse thread. The vendors and people are straight sticks and sheets. off than Marassa #14. They don’t have tents or back out, underneath rubble and concrete A school is being built between the two the same organization to the village setup, the hanging by reinforcing steel, or electrical Marassa Camps which is hopeful because it will committee of leaders seems separatist from the wiring. The city is pancaked, rubbled, smoking provide some education for the children, but rest of the people. The people themselves are with burning fires, mud, debris and all of a 22
“The limestone and cinderblock is broken into pieces, everything looks white and the tents are orderly and almost beautiful in the monochrome for a moment. Marcio is driving and explains that tent city sits on top of the mass gravesite. They buried more than 150,000 bodies in that grave, piling the rubble of their houses on top of them.” for so long, with so little change affected - no wonder it’s more like Hades than Paradis. They’ve been forgotten, used as an economic dumpground and been un-led for decades. Another team member blogged today “A lot of things happen in Haiti for lack of choices..” and I think it’s true. Long-term corruption at government levels means that much monetary aid given over the last decades hasn’t seen
HOPE IN HAITI Since our Haiti trip, SP Magazine is working with AIM (the organization we travelled with), as well as with Doug Pagitt’s In For 10 programme & Journey Community Church in San Diego, CA.
Through donations so far we’ve landed 30 days worth of food and supplies to the Son of God Orphanage in Carrefour, Haiti. For $NZ140 you can feed the 126 orphans and auxiliary staff at the orphanage. Our goal is ensure their short-term relief for the next year, giving them a chance to find new hope. For every $50 donation to SP Magazine, we’re giving $10 directly to Son of God Orphanage. Or you can make a gift of any amount through the SP Trust.
Tonight we talked at length about how broken Haiti really is and how long it’s been that way. Many people outside the Caribbean, Canada or the United States have probably never really heard more about Haiti than it’s supposed pact with the Devil and it’s poverty before the earthquake. But truth be told - walking and driving around the island today is watching much more than the devastation of just the earthquake. Somebody today said that the truth is, Haiti is the least cared about nation of the Western hemisphere. It reminds me a lot of my time in Fiji - where people build homes room by room, first with iron and beaten down oil drums, as they purchase concrete blocks one by one, however many a week they can afford. The shanty towns you see all over the island of Fiji are similar to the some of the tents set up, but you can see similar construction ideas in the homes left standing or partially destroyed by the quakes. They were never built to survive a quake like this one and as someone said today, one good shake more and the rest of the place would come down. But it could be paradise. The way the sun sets, the curve of the main bay, the magnificence of the mountains. The sway of palm trees, the glorious heat. In
ONE DAY IN HAITI
THE CONVERSATIONS WE HAVE EACH NIGHT
words. Natasha McGill
much go on in the way of development. The roads and infrastructure are generally pretty bad. The economy is decimated. No matter how far back you take it, the people here have been ground down into a dependency cycle, yet have a government that provides little to no security. In addition to that, it seems that aid organizations that have previously been on the ground have struggled with similar issues of networking, communication and trust. The people simply don’t have many other choices. It changes the way you live. So the answer has to begin with relationships. Nothing outside of relationship can build trust, either between external parties and Haitians or amongst the Haitian people themselves. No one factor can make the difference - except that the earthquake is potentially a game-changer only if somehow it can be seen as such. I believe relationships can change that. People partnering with other people for the best possible outcome is the only hope. I remember being in Fiji watching a game of tennis on one side of the treeline, where there was a village/shanty town built of corrugated iron on the other side. This kind of poverty exists in so many places. We have to do what we can in Haiti and learn what we can in Haiti, so that Haiti doesn’t become a story we retell, when it comes to development, aid, mission work - you name it.
my heart, I think hope is a big factor. I think circumstance and luck have a lot to do with it. Care and concern makes a difference too. When someone has hope, care and concern for you, it changes the view you have on life. It changes the view you have of purpose. It changes the way you live. For a nation to live with such hopelessness
sudden there is something glorious is being in it, breathing it the same as everyone else.
NEIGHBOURS AT WAR Trying to understand the current Israel/Palestine conflict.
words Frank Ritchie
At least nine people have been killed after Israeli commandos stormed a convoy of ships carrying aid to the Gaza Strip, the Israeli army says. Armed forces boarded the largest vessel overnight, clashing with some of the 500 people on board. It happened about 40 miles (64 km) out to sea, in international waters. Israel says its soldiers were shot at and attacked with weapons; the activists say Israeli troops came on board shooting. The activists were attempting to defy a blockade imposed by Israel after the Islamist movement Hamas took power in Gaza in 2007. – BBC World News, May 31, 2010. Nearly all the foreign activists held by Israel after its deadly raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla are due to be deported by the end of the day. About 120 of the 682 detainees were expelled overland through Jordan while hundreds more, most of them Turks, were due to be flown out. Nine activists, four of them Turkish, died when Israeli commandos boarded the six-ship convoy early on Monday. – BBC World News, June 2, 2010. 24
Israel’s navy has shot and killed four Palestinians wearing diving gear off the Gaza coast, officials say. The Israeli military said it believed those on board the boat were planning a terrorist attack. Hamas officials in Gaza say four bodies have been recovered and two people are missing. It comes a week after nine pro-Palestinian activists died in an Israeli raid on an aid flotilla trying to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza. – BBC World News, June 7, 2010
here is one land war that continually hits the headlines – the Israeli/ Palestinian conflict. It is difficult to develop a clear opinion on because of the historical, political, religious and ethnic borders it crosses. Challenging to hold a position on because of the deep complexity of the issues. Though many would point to the Bible, arguing it is an centuries-old conflict, what we see and hear about today only stretches back slightly more than 100 years. When the Gaza Flotilla story broke, the editorial team thought it about time we covered it as objectively as possible but we
recognize that a single feature will unlikely give full justice to the complex nature of the problem, nor answer all the views regarding it. Those views include competing religious agendas, political views, resource wants and needs as well as others.
A Brief History Zionism A history of the conflict includes not just the land, but the main groups that desire to control it, the most significant in our aim to understand the problem would be the Zionist movement. As a political force, Zionism was formally established by Theodor Herzl in the late 19th century following the publication of his book, Der Judenstaat, which proposed a solution to the problems of alienation and anti-Semitism Jews were facing in Europe and largely, Russia. It was a problem that culminated in the holocaust of WWII. Herzl’s grand idea was the creation of a state specifically for the Jewish people, but because of his secular views he did not care
where it was (in his book he pinpointed a spot in Argentina as a possible location of a Jewish state). As Zionism was founded it quickly drew in many different ideologies from secular to the hard-line religious. What they all managed to settle on was an agreement that Israel (as we now identify it) was the best place to form the new state. It was there that they felt they had a historical connection dating back to biblical times. At that time and up until 1917 the area they wanted was part of the Ottoman Empire, known as Palestine. It consisted largely of an Arab population that identified with the wider Arab population of the empire. Whilst there were some living in the area who identified themselves as Jews, they made up only a very minor part of the population. Aliyah Coinciding with the growth of the Zionist movement, European Jews started to migrate into Palestine. This movement is known as Aliyah. Aliyah had/has much religious
significance for the Jewish people as return to establish Palestine as a homeland for the to the land has been a central part of their Jewish people. At the time (although the religious identity since the Diaspora that Ottoman Empire would disintegrate and admit largely occurred following the Jewish revolts defeat in 1918), the Arab population was still against Roman occupation in 70 and 135 the clear majority in the land with the Jewish AD. Alongside population only the religious accounting for just Sed qui quis imin perepudis et significance it also under 8% of the total quunt maximet ab ius ea et pa sim served a secular population. vernam qui iur aut quunt aturis et, political purpose In the early 1920’s early in the 20th the then League of seque volorerio volupta eptat. century as Zionism Nations (it would Omnimol uptatio nsendelia duciis sought to bolster be superseded by Jewish numbers the United Nations within the land to better lay claim to it as a following WWII) granted a mandate to the Jewish state. British to govern the area of Palestine with the Early settlers and Arab Jews already in intent to establish a Jewish homeland that did Palestine lived alongside the majority Arab not impede on the civil and religious rights of population very well but as numbers grew and non-Jews in the country; known as the British as a political agenda started to develop, so did Mandate for Palestine. tensions. In 1917 during World War I, the British A problem arises defeated the Ottoman Turkish forces, occupying Just as Arabs were doing in other areas, Palestine and Syria. Britain put forward the Palestinian Arabs were forming a national famed Balfour declaration, stating their intent identity that had birthed during Ottoman 25
strong as those who support it though as the UN General Assembly can only make recommendations, and these are not legally binding. Palestinian Arabs and most of the wider Arab population of the area did not support the plan and so the Arab League drew up military resolutions to deal with the issue. The British did not support it as they felt it was not acceptable for both sides so they refused to implement it. There were also some in the Jewish community who did not accept it as they desired the whole land. War Britain therefore terminated the British Mandate for Palestine, having decided to take no part in any transition to the Partition Plan. They announced their intention to withdraw from the region unilaterally by May 15, 1948. On May 14 1948 the Jewish leadership declared independence and established the State of Israel. It was recognized by the Soviet Union and the US along with other countries but not by the surrounding Arab nations. It resulted in an immediate war with surrounding Arab nations invading to try and stop the establishment of the state. At this time the Arab population of Palestine was over 1.2 million to the Jewish 600,000. In the war The Haganah and Irgun implemented Operation Kilshon in order to capture Jerusalem, which had been designated to be under international administration in the UN Partition Plan. In response, Trans-Jordanian troops, led by British officers who had resigned their positions in the British army weeks earlier, fought to keep the area of Jerusalem designated under international control and other areas designated as Arab territory according to the Partition Plan for the Arab population. The ensuing conflict stopped and started until an armistice agreement between the newly established state of Israel and Syria in 1949 where the borders and area of control shifted. Upon the signing of the armistice, Israel had retained its independence and
increased its land area by 50% more than what had been designated for it in the Partition Plan. The events and aftermath included a mass exodus of Arab Palestinians to neighbouring states such as Jordan and Lebanon. Following the war what we know as the West Bank became part of Jordan and the area we now know as Gaza became part of Egypt. This changed again in 1967 following the Six Day War (June 5–10, 1967). Israel began to occupy the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Golan Heights and the Sinai Peninsula. This placed them in control of the Arab populations within those areas, populations that were largely Palestinian and that had been displaced from their homes and lands in the area that is now Israel during the war of 1948.
The Present Problem
The Jewish Perspective Israel as a Jewish state, represents a people group who have largely never felt completely at home in nations they have found themselves in throughout centuries of history following the Diaspora when Jewish people were scattered throughout the world. For many years Jews around the world, particularly in Europe and and Europe was forced upon them, that they Russia, suffered through alienation and acts were asked to act as the solution for a problem of violent racism. The Russian pogroms of the they did not cause and that the solution was 19th century were particularly harsh as a clearly anti-Semitic sentiment was brewing in Europe. forced upon them by foreign interests who That became catalyst for the desire to create were largely trying to wash their hands of the a state the Jewish people could call their own problem they created. and that would act as a safe haven for their own Just as the Jews desired a homeland, so identity and culture. did those Arabs dwelling in Palestine when Those political moves in the late 19th and the Ottoman Empire crumbled. As other early 20th century were to establish that surrounding Arab nations were, they had been homeland in Palestine – a land they considered themselves Sed qui quis imin perepudis et quunt to be intimately connected maximet ab ius ea et pa sim vernam qui iur to throughout historical and aut quunt aturis et, seque volorerio volupta Scriptural narratives. The Holocaust cemented that desire eptat. Omnimol uptatio nsendelia duciis si and determination as well as susamus antur, nistinc tatenimus. giving rise to a strong identity Bea et apidus. Et quame comnist, as victims of prejudice and oppression, something that experiencing a rise in national identity that still appears in discussions around current hoped to be realised in a Palestinian state. issues. Jewish Israelis feel they have a right They believe the land was stolen by a minority to a homeland and that others should accept group who had no legitimate right to it. Many the land as being originally theirs. They see were forced from their homes as Israel was the tensions directed against them as a simple continuation of anti-Jewish sentiment that they established and became refugees dwelling in Gaza and the West Bank as well as in Jordan have experienced for so long. and Lebanon. Some of those who were evicted The Palestinian Arab Perspective in 1948 as children are still alive today and On the other hand, Palestinian Arabs (and the carry memories of their homes – some of which surrounding Arab population) never agreed are now lived in by Israeli citizens. to the establishment of the modern state of An International Perspective Israel as it exists in what was formerly their Thrown into the mix are many international land. They feel that the homeland solution interests and agendas being played out in to the problems Jews were facing in Russia
All that recent history feeds into the current problem and headlines we see constantly emerging from that part of the world. In the big picture, the modern nation of Israel is a very young country with a shaky history riddled with tension. It represents the aspirations of two distinct people groups – both with legitimate claims and both with pains that need to be recognized and affirmed.
Source: Origins and Evolution of the Arab-Zionist Conflict, Israel: A History, The Question of Palestine and Graphic News
things people culture
Empire rule. Since they were the clear majority, they saw Palestine as theirs. During these early years, the political fate and control of the land is murky territory that involves Britain, the Zionist movement, the League of Nations and various Arab leaders, each with their own agenda. The desires of the majority Arab population go largely unheard during this time. With the intent to create a Jewish state clear, Palestinian Arabs start to revolt, with many instances of violent protest recorded between 1920 and the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948. In order to protect Jewish citizens and further the cause of establishing the state, the Jewish community formed the underground militant organization in 1920, the Haganah. With political and ethnic tensions already high, the British struggle to control the situation and place restrictions on Jewish migration into the area. migrants meant an Arab uprising was a A movement of illegal migration soon begins, certainty so in 1947 the United Nations set with the Zionist movement running military up the United Nations Special Committee operations against the British authorities and on Palestine (UNSCOP) after Britain placed Arab population. The most famous incident the situation in their hands with a desire to is the bombing of the King David Hotel terminate their mandate. perpetrated by the Irgun in 1946 resulting in UNSCOP consisted of representatives from 91 deaths, 46 injuries. 11 nations. Seven members recommended a In 1946 the two state solution, Anglo-American one Jewish and Sed qui quis imin perepudis et Committee of Inquiry one Arab, with quunt maximet ab ius ea et pa sim was established Jerusalem being vernam qui iur aut quunt aturis et, between Britain under international and the US to find a administration. seque volorerio volupta eptat. workable policy for Three of the Omnimol uptatio nsendelia duciis the admission of Jews members, India, si susamus antur, nistinc tatenimus. Iran (who have into Palestine. The Bea et apidus. Et quame comnist, enquiry unanimously never recognized agreed on the the establishment admission of 100,000 Jews into Palestine but of Israel) and Yugoslavia supported a single also recommended there was to be no Arab or federal state containing both Jewish and Arab Jewish state. Harry Truman, the US President states – there was one abstention. at the time, issued a statement in support of The UN General Assembly then voted in the 100,000 Jewish migrants but failed to favour of the two states Partition Plan with acknowledge the rest of the Inquiries findings. the majority of the land going to the minority The declared admission of 100,000 Jewish Jewish population. That vote was only as
the area and varying religious perspectives. Many Western nations see Israel as a critical ally in the region, while many Arabs view it as legitimate Arab land that the western world has co-opted for their own purposes. Both sides, Israelis and Palestinian, have legitimate historical pains that have given birth to the current crisis; resulting in two people groups desiring a space to call their own. One currently holds the land in question, although somewhat tenuously, while the other legally holds no claim. They both need to hear and listen to the story of the other – to hear each other’s pain and recognize the legitimacy of the grievances the other feels and they both need to provide room for the other. All this is much easier said than done. Frank’s view The way forward is not an easy path and I offer no solution to the problem. My hope is that ultimately all affected parties will have a place to truly call home and though some religious views hold no hope for it, my desire for both people groups is peace. I have hope and I believe it can happen; I just pray that the bloodshed does not continue as we move towards that peace. May the children of the Jews and the children of the Arabs one day know what it means to truly call one another ‘friend’ and may that friendship be impervious to the agendas of others that would seek to use them as pawns in their own selfish games. 27
Scott Pilgrim Vs the World (12th August 2010)
Date Night or Mate Night? Knight and Day (15th July 2010) An action-comedy centered on fugitive couple (Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz) on a glamorous and sometimes deadly adventure where nothing and no one – even themselves – are what they seem. Amid shifting alliances and unexpected betrayals, they race across the globe, with their survival ultimately hanging on the battle of truth vs. trust. Action and Romance… The Perfect Date Night!
Inception (22nd July 2010) Cryptically described as a contemporary sci-fi action thriller “set within the architecture of the mind”, this is director Christopher Nolan’s
Michael Cera is Scott Pilgrim, a young slacker and bassist for a rubbish garage band called Sex Bob-omb. He’s in love with the rollerblading Ramona Flowers. To win her, Scott must defeat her seven evil ex-boyfriends who in turn all want to kill him. They include a skateboarder, a vegan rock star and a pair of fearsome identical twins. It plays a lot like a Street Fighter type video game creating a quirky, yet hilarious result. If you both like the weirder modern comedies then this might be a super cool Date Night.
follow-up to smash-hit The Dark Knight. The plot has been kept highly secret but involves a goateed Leonardo DiCaprio as an expert in “subconscious security”. He’s a high-tech agent who steals ideas from his targets while they sleep, manoeuvring through their complex and surreal dreamscapes. His wife is played by Marion Cotillard, while Ellen Page is his intern sidekick. Joining them are Nolan regulars Michael Caine, Cillian Murphy and Ken Watanabe. The film was shot around the globe, including Tokyo, Los Angeles, Paris and London. Great Mate Night flick but the complexity requires an alert mind to keep up, don’t go tired!
Dinner for Schmucks (5th August 2010) Businessman Tim (Paul Rudd) is happy to have met the incredibly stupid, amazingly dense Barry (Steve Carrell). He brings him along to his boss’ monthly dinner party where guests are challenged to bring along the dumbest person they can find, for the amusement of the group. But instead of being congratulated for bringing such a moron, Tim finds his life spiralling out of control with a series of personal and professional disasters as his new ‘friend’ accidentally paves a path of destruction. Featuring an awesome comedic cast including Flight of the Conchords Jermaine Clement, Hangover beardy man Zach Galifianakis and Office Space’s Ron Livingston. Oh, you should know it’s a re-make of French comedy The Dinner Game. Best be safe and a make it a Mate Night.
Jonah Hex (5th August 2010) A western-horror based on a comic book, Josh Brolin stars as Jonah Hex, a scarred drifter and bounty-hunting gunslinger who can track down anyone and anything. After a near-death experience, Jonah’s violent history has left him with one foot in the natural world and one on the ‘other side’. Now his past is catching up with him and the US military make him an offer: they’ll lift the multiple warrants on his head if he tracks and stops terrorist voodoo practitioner Quentin Turnbull. 28
Oh my gosh, Robert Pattinson can actually act. Remember Me is that stock standard plotline: boy faces hard times and loss, meets a girl through a bet with a friend, falls for the girl, girl falls for the boy, both boy and girl face family issues that could break them apart or draw them together. An endearing and compelling story set on the backdrop of New York City. A surefire win for a stay-at-home date night with your girl.
Sherlock Holmes Holmes’ trusty sidekick Dr Watson, is leaving the nest in the search for marital bliss and to somewhat distance himself from the chaos that surrounds Holmes. Watson promises just one more case together. However that one last jaunt becomes a rather large case that could spell the end of the world, therefore dragging Watson back into the mystery. As the mystery appears to be solved we see the rise of Holmes’ Nemesis Lord Blackwood in what can only be described as a diabolical plan to rule the world. Holmes and Watson will need to put on their thinking caps and fighting gloves to solve this and save the day.
The Fantastic Mr Fox Roald Dahl’s classic and endearing tale of Mr. Fox and his wild-ways of hen heckling, turkey taking and cider-sipping, nocturnal, instinctive adventures is adapted gloriously to the screen in ‘real-life animation’. Worth watching for the stellar cast of actors including George Clooney, Meryl Streep and Owen Wilson – it’s the overall brainchild of director Wes Anderson who also wrote the screenplay from the original work.
Alice in Wonderland When faced with a marriage proposal from an undesired suitor, 19-year-old Alice runs off into the woods to find solace and ponder her future. In the process of chasing down a strangely familiar white rabbit; Alice finds herself falling down a hole and into a strange new whimsical world and embarks on a fantastical journey to find her true destiny and end the Red Queen’s reign of terror. Whilst not as typically dark as expected from the Depp/Burton combo, it’s still a fabulously theatrical romp through a very different Wonderland.
Microsoft X-Box Kinect The Kinect camera technology detects and tracks your full body with corresponding movements, so when players swing their hands or kick their feet, the Kinectsupported games translate your movements to in-game actions. For example, in Kinect Adventures, you physically have to lean left or right to guide a raft down the roaring rapids of a river. In the bowling game found in Kinect Sports, players simply perform the bowling motion as they would in real life and Kinect will do the rest. What makes Kinect even more interesting is that its functionality extends beyond games and into the Xbox 360 dashboard. Kinect users can tell the Xbox 360 (thanks to a built-in microphone in Kinect) to perform various actions, whether it’s pausing a movie or initiating a video chat with a friend. Additionally, users can navigate through menus by simply placing their hand in the air to a corresponding object onscreen.
Playstation 3 Move Based on a handheld motion controller wand, PlayStation Move uses the PlayStation Eye camera to track the wand’s position, and inertial sensors in the wand to detect its motion. More specifically it functions by using a combination of accelerometers, gyrometers, and magnetometers. Sony determined that the sensors alone are not enough to accurately track movement. As a result, the lit bulb on top of the controller works in conjunction with the PlayStation Eye to help do so. The colours of the bulbs are activated by a combination of LEDs and are fully customizable by game developers. The colours can also change shade to help the PS Eye better track movement in case a particular room environment has similar colour schemes. Up to four controllers can be tracked at one time. Sony indicated that the processing cell is rather adept at image processing and does so with little memory overhead and minimal impact to overall performance. The PS Eye’s camera system generates images at 60 frames per second, with a resolution of 640x480. When combined with the PlayStation Move controller and the Cell processor, the setup can accurately measure millimetre differences in movement and is accurate enough to detect one-degree shifts in angle. 29
“Invictus” tells the story of a broken and hurting South Africa, torn apart at the dawn of legal equality. With apartheid laws recently repealed and even with the election of a black President (Mandela), this was a country still haunted by the old ways and the old colours. Set during the 1995 Rugby World Cup, Mandela inspires the Captain of the team, Francois Pienaar, despite the Springboks dismal form in build-up, to pull his team together for one of the greatest comebacks in sporting history.
The E3 2010 Convention was held June 15 – 17 in the US and featured previews of a whole pile of new Gaming Console gadgets and goodies… here’s a couple of things to look out for…
Time to interact…
Just right for a night in…
need to know
What I learnt at the movies...
That Grand Old Catch 22
The Spiritual Significance of Music Edited by Justin St. Vincent
reviewer Jon E Clist
“The spiritual significance of music is a subject so deep and full of subjective sinkholes it would require a book.”
Gerald Casale, Devo
The concept behind The Spiritual Significance of Music is simple enough; an array of artists, musicians and professionals brought together to provide commentary on the question “What do you believe is the spiritual significance of music?” Most of them have at it. Anyone who has had experience with a musician or creative will know that they have opinions in spades – a good thing, considering they are some of the world’s foremost voices. One of editor Justin St. Vincent’s masterstrokes was in taking steps to avoid TSSOM being some kind of onesided homily from the Christian Music Scene. To this end, the artists interviewed are from a wide spectrum of believers, atheists and cynics, with a few Satanists thrown in for good measure. The leading question too, is deceptively brilliant. St. Vincent gets no objections for leading the witness. It’s genius in it’s vagueness; there’s no mention of God, instead leaving the subject to come to their own conclusions on the meaning of spirituality itself, and introducing the question within a question. Many of the artists start there. “First of all, what is spirituality?” asks Sander Gommans of After Forever. The views of the artists are fascinating in their diversity; some discount the term in favour of a Powerful Emotional Response, others give names; whether that name be God, Allah, Yahweh, Satan, or some kind of universal force, “something substantial in the universe”. 30
As far as the link between spirit and music, the dialogue descends further into the rabbit-hole. Daniel Beddingfield refers to the sound of the “Deep hum behind reality…particle and wave…the excitement of electrons”, singer-songwriter Victor Crowl pays tribute to the “energy between the notes”, while composer Peter Davison brings the big bang into play. Of course, there is plenty of standard Protestant argument when it comes to God and music – “Music was created by God, as was every instrument to be used to bring Him glory” says Sonic Flood’s Rick Heil. Again, St. Vincent’s great masterstroke is at show here. The book is treated with great objectivity; every opinion gets its own weighting, and the reader is left with a challenging depth of opinion. One thing that becomes clear within TSSOM
is the chasm between the language used by the overtly Christian artists and the others. The Christian artists seem to be bound by a form of their own language, where ‘spirituality’ becomes ‘God’, ‘spiritual music’ becomes ‘Worship’. They argue over semantics (Petra’s John Schlitt – “I don’t believe there is spiritual significance in music, but I do believe music is a powerful tool for a spiritual end”). To a certain extent, this makes their view come off as a little narrow. As a person with spiritual beliefs myself, I stop short of advocating some kind of universalism , but I definitely think that our language needs to change when we’re exploring a matter so wide and expansive, otherwise we miss out on a powerful opportunity to grow our outlook. It remains however, that the dialogue within TSSOM is important.
The Bourne Identity A man wakes with no knowledge of who he is, where he has been or the events that lead him there. In many ways, he’s like a blank slate but as time passes the truth becomes clearer; he possesses a very specific, alarming skillset, there are enemies in pursuit of him and finally he realises the truth he’d been searching for. His previous identity is that of a high-level American spy, but something’s gone terribly wrong.
There’s a moment in the film where Jason Bourne begins to realise he’s willingly done horrible and immoral things, at the bidding of his controllers. He knows that he must face down the demons of his past in order to find a hope for the future. Even though we are not amnesia-suffering top ranked spies, there is a truth in the Bourne Identity that applies to us all. Even amnesia cannot hide you from your past, the life you have led and the things you have done and said. No matter how deep you bury your problems or mistakes, it is only a matter of time before they come back to haunt you. At some stage we all must face the demons of our past and truthfully deal with them in order to move on.
For Jason Bourne it took three movies for him to completely find out the true nature and depth of his past and those things that were not only holding him back from living a free future but also affecting those around him. Perhaps it’s a lesson we too can learn from the Bourne Identity. Perhaps we too need to take the time to step into our past in order to find out who we really are and take ownership of the things we have done. Only then can we truly turn our past into history, instead of it controlling our future. 31
a day in the life of a chaplain
Tertiary Chaplaincies in New Zealand by city Whangarei
Northland Institute of Technology currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Waikato University http://www.waikato.ac.nz/sasd/health/ chaplaincy.shtml Ecumenical Chaplain : Jemma Allen Catholic Chaplain : Antony Bernal Waikato Institute of Technology Andrew McKean, Herenga Wirihana, Newman Soloai firstname.lastname@example.org
Auckland University of Auckland (campuses : City CBD, Tamaki, Epsom, Grafton) http://www.auckland.ac.nz/uoa/home/for/ current-students/cs-student-support-andservices/cs-personal-support/cs-spiritualsupport/ Maclaurin Chaplains : Uesifili Unasa, Howard Carter Catholic Tertiary Chaplaincy : Pat Brophy, Leona Garchow, Denis Brown Tutaku AUT University (campuses : City CBD, Akoranga) http://www.aut.ac.nz/student-life/studentservices/help-and-advice/health,-counsellingand-wellbeing/spirituality-and-chaplaincy Catholic Tertiary Chaplaincy (as above) Chze Pheng Ching, Amala Wrightson, Rafat Njam, Winston Halapua, Sevati Tuwere Massey University (Albany) http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/studentlife/albany-campus/services-for-students/ chaplains-and-religious-services/albany_home. cfm Ricky Waters (Co-ordinating Chaplain), Tu-Yi Chiang, Yang Yang Wu, Jill Shaw, Kyu Kim, Justin Cherry, Jeff lane, Carrie Rambo, Steve Turner email@example.com Unitec Institute of Technology (campuses : Mt. Albert, Henderson, Takapuna) http://www.unitec.ac.nz/?FA7EA975-EB0D4564-9004-FD3CE3FED257 Ricky Waters (Co-ordinating Chaplain), Chze Pheng Ching, Talasoga Su’a, Wilkinson Hu, Cindy Brickell, Owen Rogers, Jeff Lane firstname.lastname@example.org Manukau Institute of Technology (campuses : Otara, Auckland CBD – Maritime, Newmarket – Language) http://www.manukau.ac.nz/student-services/ student-affairs2/student-life/chaplains Ricky Waters (Co-ordinating Chaplain), Heather Brockett, Amy Wen, John Gower, Colin Zhao, James Shen, Michael Drake, Suong Hong Eyou email@example.com 32
Tauranga / Mt. Mauganui Bay of Plenty Polytechnic currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Rotorua Waiariki Polytechnic currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Gisborne Tairawhiti Technical Institute currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
New Plymouth Western Institute of Technology http://www.witt.ac.nz/content/100001012. aspx Cathy Gordon
Napier Eastern Institute of Technology http://www.eit.ac.nz/chaplain_service/ chaplain_service.aspx Chris Malcolm (Co-ordinating Chaplain), Steve Demetrius, Jenny Ironside
Wanganui Universal College of Learning (UCol) currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Palmerston North Massey University http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/student-life/ manawatu-campus/services-for-students/ chaplains-and-religious-services/palmerston_ home.cfm Paul Stock (Co-ordinating Chaplain), Kathleen Field, Dianne Stock, Terry McGrath, Sesimani Havea, Mark Grace, Colin Day, Mark Downey, Victoria Sibley Universal College of Learning (UCol) Kathleen Field, Colin Day
Universal College of Learning (UCol) currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Nelson / Blenheim Nelson / Marlborough Institute of Technology currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Westport / Greymouth Taipoutini Polytechnic currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Christchurch Canterbury University http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/chaplains/ Ecumenical : Tom Innes, Paul Stanaway http://www.cyt.org.nz/?sid=103 Catholic : John Adams, Ken Joblin, Katie Malone, Eddie Caudel Lincoln University http://www.lincoln.ac.nz/Services-facilitiesand-support/Health-and-Support/Chaplains/ Ecumenical : Glenda Hicks, Michael Cooke Catholic : as above Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology currently no Chaplaincy on the campus -
Dunedin Otago University http://www.otago.ac.nz/chaplain/ Greg Hughson, Mark Chamberlain, Amy Armstrong, Rosie Victor-Hoogland, Lyn Meinders Otago Polytechnic http://www.otago.ac.nz/chaplain/ Mike Wright, Paul Armstrong
Invercargill Southern Institute of Technology http://www.sit.ac.nz/pages/services/chaplain Lisa Stuart Southland Community College Lisa Stuart firstname.lastname@example.org
E & OE Ricky Waters ANZTCA Northern Co-ordinator
Making Sense: Arriving at Integrity I
t was a rainy day in Mission Bay…have no and then follow it with, “But what about…?” fear! I had my paws wrapped around a hot Then would come another familiar statement, cup of tea and was awaiting the arrival followed by, “But what if ...?” and then another of a timid, but curious acquaintance. She “but . . .” had expressed discomfort with the traditional These are altogether different questions from views of faith, religion and God, and with “What about …?” or “What if…?” Questions that the institutional trappings in which that is begin with a “but” are countering what came oft bundled. I didn’t blame her at all. I’m before. They are defensive, confrontational or often uncomfortable with the packaging and contentious, and I heard them all as a sincere systems too, but my mission on the day was effort to get behind and under what she’d not to dismantle the system, but help her find always been taught. She wanted to know how her way ahead in spite of it. to refute those who challenged her statements I’m a chaplain, an archaic old-school name for of belief, long held beliefs that she may have someone who helps people make sense of life inherited, not birthed for herself. in terms of faith and spirituality. We often are Having walked on Franz Joseph Glacier and there just after disaster has struck, but we much done three of the South Island Great walks, I prefer being called early if disaster can at all be know there is a huge difference between being averted. I’ve met people in hospitals, at police dropped at the top by helicopter and making stations, and on the curb outside of pubs. I much the journey on foot. The view may be great prefer meeting students and young adults in from the helicopter, but I can say I know the cafes when no immediate Routeburn Track. I walked crisis is looming. it. I got blisters, twisted my “Questions that begin Eventually she arrived, knee, shared rehydrated with a “but” are countering mush with strangers and felt a bit late, but apologetic so all my imaginings were what came before. They are the exhilaration of bursting tamed immediately. You defensive, confrontational out of the treeline into an know, the things that can alpine wilderness that took or contentious..” run through the mind, my breath away. I made the “She’s stood me up, the journey myself. I own it, little…” or “So she wasn’t serious about needing though DOC might be surprised at that. to talk.” or “Slept in, got a better offer, forgot, oh I find similar truth in the realms of spirituality, whatever!” After realising I was being an idiot faith and sense-making. Stuff in life happens. and that she seemed to be in a bit of turmoil, I Others control parts of it. We control some of it. started listening, not just with my ears, but with We are left to make sense of much of it in our my heart, my spirit and with prayers for wisdom. own ways. We each have to arrive at answers There was a pattern to our conversation. in our own way. My answers do not necessarily She would lay out an accepted belief or fact, fit your questions. My journey reveals truths to
Victoria University http://www.victoria.ac.nz/chaplains/angchap. html David Newton, Joel Carpenter, Loren Hockley http://www.victoria.ac.nz/chaplains/kohanga. html Travina Oh, Clare O’Connor Massey University http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/student-life/ wellington-campus/services-for-students/ chaplains-and-religious-services/studentgroups.cfm Rey Enriques (Co-ordinating Chaplain), Kolepa Konesi, Tim Duxfield http://www.victoria.ac.nz/chaplains/kohanga. html
Chaplaincy is more than just having a pastor or priest to talk to. Nor are they just for believers, but can help answer questions, open doors and begin conversations with many students and staff on campus. If you’re not familiar with the tertiary services available where you are, why not stop by and say hi? Also remember, that they’re specialists in weathering storms regardless of whether you feel in spiritual, emotional and intellectual chaos. Not counselling, just a friendly ear with some valuable pointers.
One of the many partners SP Magazine works with is the network of chaplains available on many of the tertiary campuses across New Zealand. One of the reasons we love the work they do is the high value they place on conversation, listening, helping and having an open door approach to spirituality.
columnist Jill Shaw
me, but you don’t hold those in the same way I do, nor should you. The God I serve is big enough and clever enough to be uniquely revealed to each of us. The Bible is not so much a rule book or map as it is a personal journal through which we can see God’s heart and intent. Religion, on the other hand, is systematised and codified as a way of protecting the powers and institutions. That’s not God’s fault, but it’s often enough to frustrate us just enough to throw the baby out with the bath water. I think I just called God ‘baby’. My friend had been challenged by friends who did not believe in the God she had grown up with. She was trying to make sense of what she’d always thought and what wasn’t common to her new circle of friends. She was going through the hard part of developing integrity in her faith. Many people do not have integrity in such things, whichever place in the circle they choose to stand. They don’t necessarily know why they don’t believe, or do believe, or even what they believe. They’ve chucked everything aside because it was just all too hard. An unexamined position either way, as with an unexamined life, is not worth much. Integrity in seeking your own answers is worth heaps and will earn you the respect, even of those with whom you disagree. Jill Shaw is on the Chaplaincy Services team at Massey University in Albany. As such, she is often in that space between the religious types who are sceptical of reason and the rational types who are sceptical of faith. 33
columnist andy dickson
Have you met my friend Mr Christ?
ecently one of my friends joked about his friend ‘Mr Christ’. Of course he was talking about Jesus, and we all had a bit of a laugh, but it got me thinking, because in many churches today this is indeed how the term ‘Christ’ is used—as Jesus’ last name. So what does ‘Christ’ really mean? And if it isn’t just Jesus’ last name, what do we mean when we call him that? Of course, first and foremost, we call Jesus ‘Christ’ because the New Testament writers call him that. But to begin to understand it we must take a quick trip into the culture and language of first-century Christianity, and of the Jewish people in the last few centuries leading up to that time. It was in this lead-up to the time of Jesus that the Jewish people found themselves in exile—that is, they had been captured and carted off to a distant land. Even when some of them were eventually allowed to return to the land of Israel, the land was still under occupation. And this is how they lived for several hundred years. Naturally the Israelites longed for the day when God would come and save them, freeing them from oppression and making them a great nation once again so that all would know that their God was the true God! Within this hope arose the belief in some parts of Judaism that a deliverer, sent by God, would arrive and lead the nation to victory over their oppressors. This deliverer became known as ‘Messiah’, which means ‘anointed’.
This Messiah, having freed the people from the Romans, would essentially then become their king! There are a collection of Jewish writings from this time that speak of this Messiah and their longing for him to come. Many of them
The Israelites longed for the day when God would come and save them, freeing them from oppression and making them a great nation once again so that all would know that their God was the true God! were translated from Hebrew into Greek since Greek was the most common language at the time, much like English is today. And when they translated these writings and came to the term ‘Messiah’, the writers chose to use the Greek word ‘Christos’ (also meaning ‘anointed’), from which we get the word ‘Christ’. (We could therefore just as easily call Jesus, ‘Jesus Messiah’). In the Gospels, we see much of the Jewish anticipation as they awaited the Christ, and they began to wonder whether Jesus—this worker of wonders—was the Christ they had been waiting for. Some must have decided he was, because John 6:15 tells us that the people ‘intended to come and make him king by force’. Jesus’ disciples also became aware that he was the Christ, with Peter declaring so in Mark 8:29.
But Jesus then began to educate his disciples about what sort of Christ he really was. They had expected a Christ who would bring freedom from Rome by taking up the sword and fighting. Instead, Jesus brought them freedom from sin and death by taking up his cross—fighting for us by dying and rising again so that we could truly live. For the early Christians, then, to call Jesus ‘Christ’ was not only to say that he was the one who came to bring salvation and freedom, but it was to declare that he had done so through his death and resurrection. It was to proclaim Jesus as Lord and king, and to choose to accept the salvation and freedom he offered. For them, ‘Christ’ was a title for which only Jesus was worthy. He alone is the Christ, the Messiah, the King. So next time you talk about Jesus Christ, perhaps pause and remember what you are actually declaring. And remember that he isn’t Mr Christ—he is The Christ!