Making a Difference
FAIR TRADE P.8
Whoâ€™s the Boss?
MOMS KNOW BEST P.22
A Woman Fights Back
BEATING CANCER P.28
Faith&Friends I N S P I R AT I O N F O R L I V I N G
the Habit ADDICTION ALMOST COST MICHAEL WINTER HIS LIFE. NOW HE HELPS OTHERS IN THEIR OWN BATTLES P.16
Walking the Walk Christianity isn’t just a way of thinking; it’s a way of living. People reveal they are Christians not by what they think or say. They reveal it by what they do. Rubber hitting the road, walking the walk—however one phrases it, faith needs to be put into action, otherwise it’s just … talk. So volunteer at your local food bank. Help your elderly neighbour with the groceries. Mentor a young person. You’ll not just be helping others, you’ll be helping yourself!
“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”—James 1:27 To find out how to walk the Christian walk, mail the coupon on page 26, e-mail us at faithandfriends@can. salvationarmy.org or visit your local Salvation Army church. Photo: Used with permission. © Ray Majoran, compassiongallery.com
VOLUME 20 NUMBER 5
DEPARTMENTS FAMILY TIME
5 Hey, Big Spender
You think you know a person—until you share a milkshake with them. ANALYZE THIS
8 Fair Trade in an Unfair World
We can make a difference with every thoughtful purchase we make. COMMON GROUND
11 “Are You OK?”
Kristin Ostensen was sick on the side of the road. Would anyone stop and help her? FEATURES
In King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, a streetwise gang leader confronts the person he is meant to be.
Kicking the Habit
Addiction almost cost Michael Winter his life.
Moms Know Best
When it comes to raising hooligans and orangutans, two mothers Phil Callaway knows have it in the bag. DEPARTMENTS LITE STUFF
Cover photo: Karen Ewald Photography
26 Eating Healthy With Erin
Crossword Challenge, Sudoku. NOW & THEN
28 Battling Back
A decade later, Maureen Rego still refuses to let cancer define her.
30 Plastic Soup
Every year, eight million tonnes of plastic is washed into the ocean. faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
FROM THE EDITOR
was hard at work one morning when our administrative assistant transferred a call to me from someone named Stephen Rego. Who? The name vaguely rang a bell. I suddenly remembered: I had profiled cancer survivor Maureen Rego way back in 2007 but had lost touch with her since then. Now, as I picked up the receiver, I dreaded what Maureen’s husband was about to tell me. Something along the lines of, “After a long and courageous battle with cancer, my wife passed away last week.” Instead, the voice at the other end of the receiver said, “I thought you’d like to know that Maureen will be celebrating 10 cancer-free years this coming weekend.” Would I? What a joy it was indeed to chat with Maureen and Stephen and pick up where we’d left off. Her story is on page 28. Besides Maureen’s interview, this month’s Faith & Friends has a story dealing with another remarkable survivor, Michael Winter. At one time bound for gridiron greatness, addictions brought him down, but a caring Salvation Army staff worker started him on the road back. Happily married and gainfully employed with The Salvation Army, Michael uses his past to help others in need. Elsewhere in this issue, humourist Phil Callaway tells us a little about his two favourite moms, Jeanette Levellie talks about her daughter and how they revel in their differences, and staff writer Kristin Ostensen relates how a perfect stranger helped her in a time of need. Ken Ramstead 4 • MAY 2017 I faithandfriends.ca
Mission Statement To show Christ at work in the lives of real people, and to provide spiritual resources for those who are new to the Christian faith.
Faith & Friends is published monthly by: The Salvation Army 2 Overlea Blvd, Toronto Ontario, M4H 1P4 International Headquarters 101 Queen Victoria Street, London, EC4P 4EP, England William and Catherine Booth FOUNDERS
André Cox, GENERAL Commissioner Susan McMillan TERRITORIAL COMMANDER
Lt-Colonel Jim Champ SECRETARY FOR COMMUNICATIONS Geoff Moulton, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Ken Ramstead, EDITOR
Brandon Laird DESIGN AND MEDIA SPECIALIST
Timothy Cheng SENIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNER Pamela Richardson, COPY EDITOR, PRODUCTION CO-ORDINATOR
Ada Leung CIRCULATION CO-ORDINATOR
Kristin Ostensen STAFF WRITER, PROOFREADER
Giselle Randall STAFF WRITER Scripture Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture references are taken from New International Version Contact Us P. (416) 467-3188, F. (416) 422-6120 Websites faithandfriends.ca, salvationist.ca, salvationarmy.ca E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org Subscription for one year: Canada $17 (includes GST/HST); U.S. $22; foreign $24 P. (416) 422-6119 email@example.com All articles are copyright The Salvation Army Canada & Bermuda and cannot be reproduced without permission. Publications Mail Agreement No. 40064794 ISSN 1702-0131
Hey, Big Spender You think you know a person—especially one you gave birth to—until you share a milkshake with them.
Photo: © maurusone/iStock.com
by Jeanette Levellie
he summer following my daughter Kelli’s 16th birthday, she and I worked at the same camp for a week. Kelli babysat in the family camp while I served as a counsellor for high school girls. Although we were in the same campground, our sites were about a kilometre apart.
Kelli and I had arranged to meet one Thursday at the snack bar. Since I didn’t know until Saturday night that I was travelling to camp on Sunday, I had packed in a rush and had no time to set aside spending money for the week. I came to camp with only two dollars. On Tuesday night, I put both of those
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(right) Jeanette and Kelli today. “We love to tease each other about our differences!”
in the church offering basket, so I prayed for more money to come by Thursday. Wednesday’s mail brought a letter from my husband with a lone dollar bill tucked inside. Whew! Just in time. By Thursday afternoon when I hiked down the hill to meet Kelli, my taste buds were standing on their tiptoes. As I spotted Kelli come through the creaking screen door of the snack bar, I said, “My friend said the cookies ’n’ cream milkshakes here are fantastic—let’s split one. They’re only $2, so that’s just a dollar apiece.” Kelli stood very still, a look of hesitation clouding her eyes. “Well, I’m not sure I want to spend that much,” she said. “Let me look at the menu. Maybe I’ll just get a soda. Those are
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only 50 cents each.” I sighed—a little too loudly— and my voice came out sharper than I meant it to when I answered her. “Honey, we may never have this opportunity again.” Cookies ’n’ cream was a new flavour in the world of ice cream and I had no idea if it was just a one-summer fad. But mostly I wanted one. So I pulled out my guilt-trip card. “I have only this one little dollar, and I’m willing to spend it on a treat to share with you. C’mon, Kelli.” Now it was Kelli’s turn to sigh. “Oh, all right,” she said. She looked down at the wallet in her hand like it was a puppy I was asking her to give away. Then she opened the wallet, pulled out an enormous wad of bills and slowly peeled one off.
What I thought of as stinginess when she was a teenager, I now see as a blessing. JEANETTE LEVELLIE
My mouth flapped open. “Kelli, you must have $35 in there and you’re quibbling over spending one?” She quickly listed all the items at the camp gift shop that she’d picked out to buy, arguing that she wanted to make sure she had enough for them—and a T-shirt she had her eye on—as well as some for the offering. While we enjoyed the milkshake, I felt ashamed for pressuring Kelli to spend some of her hard-earned money on a fad. But I was also a bit proud that she wasn’t a spendthrift. Blessings in Disguise That was more than 20 years ago. Kelli is now a single mom with a skinny wallet who amazes me with her ability to get the most mileage out of every dollar. From shopping the thrift-store racks for kids’ clothes to recycling plastic bottles, her saving savvy has paid off in a comfortable place to live and three happy, well-adjusted children. What I thought of as stinginess
when she was a teenager, I now see as a blessing. What she saw as wastefulness in me two decades ago, she now realizes is the ability to enjoy life’s little pleasures. And we love to tease each another about our differences! “Are you sure you want to go out for Italian, Kelli? We can brownbag it and save money to buy you a T-shirt at the camp gift shop next summer,” I jest. “How many flavours of ice cream do you need in your freezer, Mom?” Kelli teases back. “I could buy new living room furniture with what you spent on this.” It takes more than one personality type to make a balanced relationship, a healthy church or a happy world. Perhaps that’s why the Apostle Paul said, “Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you” (Romans 15:7). Sometimes blessings come disguised as annoying quirks. Seeing them through the eyes of love makes all the difference.
faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
Fair Trade in an Unfair World We can make a difference with every thoughtful purchase we make.
Photo: © Stuart Miles/ingimage.com
by Kaitlin Adlam
’ve been aware of fair trade from a young age. My socially conscious Grade 5 teacher brought our attention to the horrors many children faced in producing
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the brand-name products we often begged our parents for. We were taught that the goal of fair trade is to allow workers and producers to make a decent wage
and ensure healthy, safe working conditions. Child labour should be unacceptable and education should be a priority. So from early on, I tried to steer clear of brands I knew used child labour and sweatshops. I’d also frequent Salvation Army thrift stores because of their ethical consumer stand. As I got older, though, my priorities shifted to convenience and affordability. Life got busy, and I believed fair trade items could only be purchased in specialty stores and cost a small fortune, neither of which I had ready access to. A History of Hope But two years ago, I took the survey at slaveryfootprint.org and was floored at the effect of my shopping habits. There must be a way, I thought, to be more intentional about my purchases, so as to reduce the devastating effect on others. The Bible has countless commands, stories and values that speak to the way we treat people. We see a call to support and fairly treat all people in a number of Old Testament stories. For example, Proverbs 14:31 says: “Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honours God.” The
Bible is also clear on injustice: “And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8). The Salvation Army has been greatly involved in fair trade throughout its history. As early as 1891, the Army purchased a matchmaking factory and revolutionized the industry by forcing competitors to adopt safer production methods and healthier work environments. Recently, the Army lobbied for fair You can make a difference: • Learn to recognize common fair trade labels and use them in your home, office and church. • Ask your local coffee shop to offer fair trade coffee and tea, and your local grocer to sell fair trade food products. • Tell friends and family why you think fair trade can help create a more just global economy. • Celebrate World Fair Trade Day on May 13, 2017. • Buy fair trade gifts for housewarmings, birthdays and holidays. –Christine LeBlanc
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When we think of the human cost, it becomes too expensive not to buy fair trade. KAITLIN ADLAM trade practices in Australia, which resulted in name-brand chocolate companies offering fair trade chocolate, moving away from one of the most devastating child labour sectors in cocoa. Making a Difference While many people agree with the idea of fair trade shopping in principle, there are a number of things that hold people back as consumers. Cost is often seen as a limitation to supporting fair trade companies, but often there is little to no difference in price. With a bit of research, you can find fair trade products in many places where you already shop. And when we think
of the human cost, it becomes too expensive not to buy fair trade. We can make a difference with every purchase we make. The proof is in companies such as Cadbury, Ben & Jerry’s and many others who now provide fair trade options, due to consumer demand. There are also some amazing companies such as the Joyful Project and The Salvation Army’s Others campaign that partner with producers to give disadvantaged and trafficked people an education and quality of life they never dreamed was possible. When we consider our values as people of faith, fair trade just makes sense. We can make a difference with every thoughtful purchase we make.
(left) Lieutenant Kaitlin Adlam, a Salvation Army pastor in Brandon, Man., has developed a Canadian Fair Trade Shopping Guide, available at faithandfriends.ca
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Photos: © lzf/iStock.com
“Are You OK?” I was sick on the side of the road. Would anyone stop to help me? by Kristin Ostensen
his past winter, I was hit with the worst flu I’d had in years—perhaps my worst flu ever. I had all the symptoms, and I had them bad. As with most people, I have to be pretty sick to miss a day of work. Two days would be extremely rare. Three days, unheard of.
So after two days of resting, eating soup and drinking plenty of hot water, I was determined to drag myself out of bed and go to the office. But I didn’t get very far. I live about two blocks from the subway, so walking there typically only takes five minutes. I almost
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Pedestrians streamed passed me. Despite the crowd, I felt very alone. KRISTIN OSTENSEN
made it. Just shy of the station, I was suddenly overcome with nausea. Oh no, I thought, pausing to lean against the side of the building. Not here. Not now. But there was nothing I could do—I was about to lose my breakfast, right there, in public, with the morning commuter rush swarming around me. As I heave-hoed, I was mortified. If this flu doesn’t kill me, surely the embarrassment will. Once upright again, I could feel the tears springing to my eyes. A Voice in the Crowd Pedestrians streamed passed me, seemingly unaware of my distress. Despite the crowd, I felt very alone. I was gazing out at the street, unsure of my next move, when a voice called out to me. It was
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coming from a woman in a car that was turning left at the intersection. “Are you OK?” she asked. No, I was not. I shrugged helplessly. I appreciated the gesture, but what could she do? She was going in the opposite direction. I half-heartedly waved her off. I took several deep breaths and was trying to steady myself when a mother with two children stopped to speak with me. “Do you need help?” she asked. “Yes,” I answered. “I think I need to go to the doctor.” “Do you want me to call you a taxi?” I nodded gratefully. But just as the woman was taking out her phone, a car pulled up. It was the first woman! She had circled the block to come back and help me. She had a friend and a young child
in the back seat, but the front seat was empty. “Can I give you a ride somewhere?” she offered. “I can take you to the hospital.” “Really?” I asked. I couldn’t believe it. This woman doesn’t know me. Why would she want to help me? I asked her if she could drive me to the doctor and gave her the address. It was about 15 minutes away. En route, I asked her where she was going. She said she was taking her daughter to daycare and then going to work. This woman is going at least half an hour out of her way to help me, I realized. She’ll be late for work because of me. When she dropped me off at the clinic, I couldn’t thank her enough.
HEAVEN’S LOVE THRIFT SHOP by Kevin Frank
Role Reversal Long after I recovered from the flu, that woman’s actions stayed with me. I couldn’t help but wonder: If
the roles had been reversed, would I have stopped? Or would I have continued on, more concerned with being on time for work than helping a person in distress? It reminded me of a story Jesus once told about a man who was badly beaten and left for dead on the side of the road. Several “good” religious people walked by him, but no one stopped to help. They all had excuses. Finally, a hated outcast came along. Instead of ignoring the injured man, the outcast stopped, took him to an inn and paid for him to be cared for. This story, of course, is commonly known as the Parable of the Good Samaritan (see Luke 10:25-37). That morning, this Bible story became reality for me. I’m so grateful that the woman took time to assist me. She not only helped me get better, but also reminded me of what it means to love my neighbour.
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Photo: Courtesy of Warner Bros.
Destiny’s Child IN KING ARTHUR: LEGEND OF THE SWORD, A STREETWISE GANG LEADER CONFRONTS THE PERSON HE IS MEANT TO BE. by Ken Ramstead and Geoff Moulton
he classic story of King Arthur has a grittier look thanks to acclaimed director Guy Ritchie. In his newest film, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Arthur (Charlie Hunnam, Sons of Anarchy) is a streetwise gang leader who runs the back alleys of medieval London, England, with wit and daring—unaware that he was born to greatness. Arthur is the lost son of King Uther Pendragon (Eric Bana, Munich, Star Trek), who was murdered by his brother Vortigern (Jude Law, 14 • MAY 2017 I faithandfriends.ca
Sherlock Holmes, The Young Pope). Becoming king in Arthur’s place, Vortigern now rules the kingdom with an iron grip. Vortigern seems secure on his throne despite scattered resistance. That is, until the fabled “sword in the stone” is unexpectedly revealed. Legend says that whoever can remove the sword from its rocky base is prophesied to be the rightful king. Many attempts are made by peasants and nobles alike to remove the sword. None succeed—until Arthur grasps hold of it. With that act, his
Once Arthur pulls the sword from the stone, his life is turned upside down. future becomes clear. Instantly challenged by the power of the sword he wields, Arthur is forced to make some hard choices. Throwing in with the resistance, he must learn to master the sword, known as Excalibur, unite the people to defeat the tyrant Vortigern and become king. “I’ve never had any power, or any desire to achieve it,” Arthur says. But once he pulls the sword from the stone, his life is turned upside down. Swords and Stones “This is the Guy Ritchie King Arthur,” Hunnam stated in a recent Facebook interview. “If you are going to tackle a story that’s been told many times before, you have to try to make it feel fresh and give it reason and a new sensibility. We’ve seen the King Arthur who goes on a noble quest a million times. What if we made him a guy from the streets who had done very well for himself, who’s kind of selfish? He takes care of the people closest to him but has no noble aspirations. “There’s a reluctance for Arthur to take this responsibility as heir to the throne primarily because he’s fairly happy in the environment that he’s in,” continued Hunnam,
“but when he’s honest with himself, it’s fear-based. He’s terrified of this sense of responsibility and what it will require of him. Arthur’s journey represents the struggle that we all have to overcome our internal demons to be strong enough to conquer our external challenges.” Like Arthur, we have a higher calling. In Ephesians 2:10, the Apostle Paul says, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” As with Arthur, we are often tempted to run from our responsibility. How do we find strength to tackle that personal sword in the stone and wrench it free? We can find that through prayer, careful study of the Bible and surrounding ourselves with people to encourage us—our own personal Round Table. Just as Arthur turned to the resistance against his uncle, so we can find in the church our own united force against injustice and oppression. Standing for good is not always easy, but with Jesus, the King of Kings, on our side, the victory is already won. Whether we are a king or a commoner, our destiny with God is secure. faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
Kicking the Habit DRUGS AND ALCOHOL COST FORMER VARSITY FOOTBALL PLAYER MICHAEL WINTER HIS CAREER, HIS DIGNITY AND ALMOST HIS LIFE. TODAY, HE ADVOCATES FOR THOSE BATTLING THE SAME OBSTACLES HE FACED.
Photos: Karen Ewald Photography
by Melissa Wallace
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Michael Winter with his wife, Aimee, and son, Isaac, in Port Hardy, B.C.
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HOLDING A KNIFE TO HIS throat, Michael Winter decided it was time to die. It was January 2009, and the 28-year-old was homeless, jobless and unable to afford alcohol or his expensive cocaine and heroin habit. “My life was done,” he says. “I was suicidal, lost and messed up. “I thought, OK, it’s time.” Losing Everything Michael grew up in Toronto and began drinking, smoking and doing drugs at a young age. He loathed authority and it wasn’t long before 18 • MAY 2017 I faithandfriends.ca
he left home and became addicted to harder drugs. In high school, he worked part time to buy drugs and alcohol while pursuing a passion for football. Scouts took notice of his talent and he was ranked in the top 10 of all Canadian prospective collegiate athletes. When he received a full scholarship to New Mexico State University, he told himself he would change his life for the better once he got there. Instead, the complete opposite happened. “Drugs were more accessible and the party lifestyle was there for
(left) With five reserves in the area, 80-85 percent of the Lighthouse Resource Centre’s clients are First Nations. “The centre’s Healing Circle runs every Tuesday and is a means of ‘healing through sharing,’ ” says Michael. “We pray with people constantly and hope they can see God through our actions”
you,” he says. “So after two and a half years of school, I quit because I couldn’t handle everything. Then it was a downward spiral that kept getting worse.” From the eight years when he left university to the day he got sober, Michael remembers having two overdoses, one which left him in an eight-hour heroin-induced coma. He became homeless and survived by doing “unsavoury things.” Still, his pride remained intact. “I would rather crawl around the world naked on glass before I asked for anyone’s help,” he says. “I was lost.” From Surviving to Thriving Sobbing uncontrollably while preparing to end his life, Michael broke from character and called his mother. She connected him with a detox centre. For 35 days, he was in detox, then stayed in a safe house, followed by rehab. “I was about eight months clean when I came out, but I didn’t know how to function,” he says. “I didn’t have confidence, I didn’t have housing and I felt disconnected from society.”
Michael became homeless again, but was sober. He slept on park benches and in alleyways, using his backpack as a pillow and getting food from The Salvation Army. One day, as he was walking down a Vancouver street, exhausted and looking for a place to lie down, a
(above) Michael in front of the Lighthouse Resource Centre, operated by The Salvation Army faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
“Living within the walls of The Salvation Army was the first time I felt comfortable.” MICHAEL WINTER
staff worker from The Salvation Army’s Harbour Light invited him to sleep at their centre instead. Michael remembers going there, eating a muffin and passing out. The next day, staff told Michael about longer-term housing options, and he began a journey through various Army programs and homes for the next two and a half years. “Living within the walls of The Salvation Army in my early recovery was the first time I felt comfortable,” he says. “I didn’t have to worry about where I would get my next meal or how I would find shelter or where I would sleep. More importantly, I was treated with dignity and respect, listened to and cared for at a time when I did not feel that my life had much worth. I went from surviving to thriving.” As Michael talked to staff and read the Bible, he began to put his faith in God. It provided the foun20 • MAY 2017 I faithandfriends.ca
dation for his recovery as he learned that, with God in his life, he would never be alone again. “I truly believe that there’s no greater gift than the gift of Jesus Christ,” he says. “The Only Answer” After Michael completed his treatment, he began working as a shelter worker at Harbour Light. He was living in subsidized housing and taking courses in the University of British Columbia’s social work program. It was around this time that he met his wife, Aimee, online. “I saw her profile and thought, She’s stunning!” he says. “It’s difficult for me to tell people that a drink will ruin my life, but when I met her and told her, she said, ‘You seem to be doing good now, right?’ “She loved and accepted me as I was and we’ve been inseparable
Michael uses his past for God’s purposes and is a strong voice for people in need
since.” Today, Michael and Aimee are married with a two-year-old son, Isaac, and a baby on the way. For the past four years, he has been working as the community ministries supervisor at the Lighthouse Resource Centre, operated by The Salvation Army and located in Port Hardy, B.C. Michael not only relates to the people who come through the doors, he advocates on their behalf as a member of the Housing and Homelessness Committee and Addiction
Services Planning Committee. “I know what they’re going through because I’ve been through it,” he says. “I know how it feels to be lost in addiction, to be stuck and depressed. “We pray with people constantly and hope they can see God through our actions and feel comfortable, loved and not judged,” says Michael, who is studying to be an official member of The Salvation Army. “God came to me in His perfect time to prepare the way for my new life. He’s the only answer.” faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
Moms Know Best WHEN IT COMES TO RAISING HOOLIGANS AND ORANGUTANS, TWO MOTHERS I KNOW HAVE IT IN THE BAG. by Phil Callaway
y wife, Ramona, grew up in a home of mostly girls, so when our two boys came along, she was unprepared for two little orangutans running about the house, sliming door handles and wearing little more than smiles. They put Jello in the toaster, mud in their diapers, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in the VCR. Still she loved them, and along the way, she learned valuable lessons. Ramona’s List Here are 10 things Ramona knows but wishes she didn’t: 1. A three-year-old can talk louder than 200 adults in a crowded restaurant. 2. Kids should not throw baseballs upward when the ceiling fan is on. 22 • MAY 2017 I faithandfriends.ca
3. A single-pane window will not stop a baseball hit by a ceiling fan. 4. A glass of milk spilled on the back floor of the car without being spotted can stink up an entire vehicle for two summers. 5. Peas are easily removed from a two-year-old’s nose; beans require more work. 6. When you hear a flushing sound following by the words, “Uh-oh,” it’s rarely a good sign. 7. Garbage bags are very useful, but not as parachutes. 8. There are some odours you don’t want to know the source of. 9. Always look in the oven before you turn it on. 10. The fire department in our town has a nine-minute response time.
Illustration: Dennis Jones
Mom’s List My own mom knew a few things of her own. She raised five little hooligans living under the poverty line. Mom knew that the kids were organized and unionized but they weren’t in charge. She was. Here are just a few of the things that my mom knew, one for each of us children:
1. If you hook a dog leash over a ceiling fan, the motor is not strong enough to rotate a 42-pound boy wearing Batman underwear and a Superman cape. 2. It will, however, rotate a birthday cake fast enough to leave icing on all four walls. faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
Mom knew that the kids were organized and unionized but they weren’t in charge. She was. PHIL CALLAWAY 3. Ceramic mallard ducks hanging from the living-room wall will not survive more than six or seven games of ball hockey played by four energetic boys. 4. Never utter a threat without backing it up with action. 5. Let kids make mistakes; failure is a great teacher. Knowing and Believing Mom knew a lot of other things, too. She knew to get on her knees and pray every day for her kids and grandkids. She knew that kids spell love t-i-m-e, that 30 years later, they won’t remember how clean the kitchen was but they will remember bedtime stories. She knew enough to love us
through the runny nose and full diaper stage. She endured loud noises and late nights. She knew motherhood was far from glamorous, but that nothing is more important. Best of all, she knew Jesus as her Lord and Saviour, and she took God seriously. Herself? Not so much. She read the Bible each day and, as much as possible, did what it said. She loved Psalm 78:4: “We will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, His power, and the wonders He has done.” I’m so thankful for the things Mom knew that kept us out of trouble. And if it wasn’t for the things my wife knew, our kids would have been in even bigger trouble. But I wonder who taught them about the ceiling fan?
Phil Callaway is the host of Laugh Again Radio. Check it out at philcallaway.com
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Eating Healthy With Erin TACO ZUCCHINI BOATS TIME 60 min MAKES 4 servings SERVE WITH sour cream and tortilla chips to dip
4. Place the zucchini “boats” on the baking sheet cut-side up and spoon bean mixture inside.
6. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil, rotate pan and bake an additional 10 minutes.
7. Add sliced avocado and cilantro, and squeeze in lime juice.
3. Cut zucchinis in half, lengthwise. Use small spoon to scoop the seeds and centre out of each zucchini half.
2. Dice onion and garlic and cook in large frying pan until soft. Stir in refried beans, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook an additional 3 minutes and set aside.
5. Top with salsa, mozzarella and black olives.
1. Preheat oven to 205 C (400 F) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
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Fill in the grid so that every row, every column and every 3 × 3 box contains the digits 1 through 9. Answers on next page.
Recipe photo: Erin Stanley/veganvirgin.ca
4 medium zucchinis 1 large sweet onion 2 cloves garlic 398 ml (14½ oz) refried beans 5 ml (1 tsp) chili powder 2 ml (½ tsp) cumin 1 ml (¼ tsp) salt 1 ml (¼ tsp) black pepper 175 ml (¾ cup) salsa 60 ml (¼ cup) black olives 250 ml (1 cup) mozzarella cheese 1 avocado 60 ml (¼ cup) cilantro to garnish (optional) 1 lime
Crossword Challenge 1
6 3 1 8 5 7 2 9
5 6 7 8
4 8 2 3 1 7 5 9 6
7 6 5 9 2 8 4 1 3
3 1 4 6 7 9 8 5 2
2 7 6 8 5 1 9 3 4
5 9 8 4 3 2 1 6 7
Solution: Across: 5. small-minded; 7. stem; 8. goose; 10. temperature; 12. glade; 13. Gobi; 15. unqualified. Down: 1. slam; 2. emu; 3. unbolt; 4. measurable; 6. motherland; 9. pro; 11. podium; 13. gift; 14. sly.
DOWN 1. To shut forcefully 2. Large flightless bird 3. Open up a locked door 4. Quantifiable 6. Birthplace 9. In favour of 11. Dais 13. Present 14. Cunning
ACROSS 5. Petty 7. Part of a plant 8. Bird on our $100 bill, the Canada _ _ _ _ _ 10. Degree of heat in a substance 12. Open space in a forest 13. Central Chinese desert 15. Not up to the job
faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
NOW & THEN
Battling Back A decade after she was first diagnosed with cancer, Maureen Rego still refuses to let the disease define her. Maureen Rego (second from left) celebrated her 10th year of being cancer-free with family and friends at The Salvation Army’s Hope Community Church in Ajax, Ont.
Photo: Rick Lush
Maureen being fitted for her wig
Was Maureen Rego’s faith in God stronger than her fear of cancer? by Ken Ramstead
ancer need not be a death sentence,” stated Maureen Rego in the September 2007 edition of Faith & Friends. “Only God knows what’s in store.” At that time, the mother of two had just survived a life-threatening bout with cancer, undergoing a mastectomy and chemotherapy. Last Thanksgiving, Maureen celebrated 10 cancer-free years with a party in her honour at the Salvation Army church in Ajax, Ont. “There were all these people taking photos of me,” she laughs. “I felt like a celebrity surrounded by the paparazzi!”
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o one ever said life should be problem-free,” states Maur een Rego. “It’s the way we handle those problems that’s important.” This positive outlook helped her weather many trials in her life, but never more so than when she faced a life-threatening bout of cancer. Maureen was born in Guyana, the second youngest of nine children. Her mother regularly brought her children to church. “While my father never attended,” Maureen remembers, “he knelt and said his prayers every morning and night.” In 1982, when she was 23, Maureen’s mother passed away, and her world came crashing down. How could God have taken Mom away from us? Maureen thought. Nine days later, Maureen had a vision of her mother while doing laundry. “Mom had a smile on her face and God spoke to me, telling me that she was happy and 14 | FAITH & friends September 2007
at peace in Heaven with Him,” Maureen says. This vision was a turning point for her. “It restored my faith. I picked myself up, dusted myself off and got on with my life.” Maureen’s renewed faith made it easier to cope with the loss of her father just six months later. Coming Home
Though a regular churchgoer, Maureen felt a growing dissatisfaction. She tried various denominations, but nothing seemed right. One of her sisters mentioned that she was attending a Salvation Army church in Australia. “I’d always thought that The Salvation Army was like the Red Cross—they did good work in times of crisis,” says Maureen. “I’d never known it was a church, too.” An acquaintance directed her to nearby Hope Community Church in Ajax, Ont., but it took six weeks for her to work up the nerve to walk in. “The welcome I received
from Pastor Mark Dunstan was warm her ordeal. This is what it’s come to, she and genuine. He realized I was a newthought, as she looked at the clumps of comer, went right up to me and said, ‘I her hair that had fallen out. This is realhope you enjoy the service.’ I did, and ity. But trust in God outweighed her I knew I’d return to worship at this fears. “There are so many things in life church. I felt like I had come home.” I have no control over, and that’s when Now happily married and the I leave control to God.” mother of two, Maureen spent 10 The support of the Salvation Army years as an office worker before fi nd- church during this time was treing her calling as a full-time day-care mendous and ongoing, with visits, provider in 2002. “I was in charge phone calls and e-mails from her new of seven children, my days were full friends. “Our new pastor, Major Greg and life seemed complete.” But unexMcInnes, would pray with me during pected news soon shattered her world. the rough times when I was too sick to attend church,” recalls Maureen. Life-Changing Appointment The morning of her doctor’s A routine breast self-examination in appointment, as Maureen prepared to 2006 turned into a cancer diagnosis wash some clothing, she felt a peace for Maureen. The first thing she did come over her. “I received a message when her doctor told her was to kneel from God that everything was going to beside her bed and pray. “God, if my be all right.” This second vision, again place in Heaven is being prepared,” in a laundry room, strengthened her she sobbed, “please help me accept faith. Later that morning, she walked this. If not, then lead me along the into the surgeon’s office to good path You’ve prepared for me.” news. “I asked the surgeon to repeat With the mastectomy and chemowhat she had just told me,” a relieved therapy that followed, Maureen’s life Maureen says. “The cancer had not seemed to slow to a crawl as she waited spread.” While there will be further for word from her doctor on the tests, doctors are optimistic about results of the surgery. “I was in shock Maureen’s recovery. “Cancer need not and in denial,” says Maureen. “I was be a death sentence,” states Maureen. fit as a fiddle. How could this happen?” Her mastectomy scar reminds her that The loss of her hair during the chemowithout faith and early medical detectherapy was the most traumatic part of tion, she wouldn’t be alive. “Only God knows what is in store for me,” says Maureen, “but I’m certain it will have something to do with Hope Community Church and The Salvation Army. In fact, I’ll be teaching Sunday school classes in September. I’m back on track and confident of the future.” Maureen, husband Stephen, with daughters Robyn and Ashley at a wedding this past June
September 2007 FAITH & friends | 15
Faith & Friends interviewed Maureen and her husband, Stephen, at their home: Let’s backtrack to 2007 when we ran the article in Faith & Friends. How did you handle the diagnosis? Maureen Rego: In the beginning, I
didn’t handle it well. I kept saying, “Why is this happening to me? Why now? Why me?” Then I realized, “Well why not me?” That helped put things in perspective.
Were there any health scares during that time? MR: Oh yes, especially in the first five
years. Every cold, every cough was a crisis. But since then, I’ve been very healthy. After the chemo was done, I started exercising more, eating better and taking vitamins to build up my immune system. The doctors kept on top of things and then after the five-year mark, the surgeon no longer needed to see me; at the sevenyear mark, the oncologist no longer needed to see me, and I thought, Well no one wants to see me! (laughs) I guess that’s a good thing, right? It still must have been a stressful time for you. MR: Absolutely, without a doubt.
After one of my checkups, the doctor requested a biopsy. But fortunately the results were negative. You imagine the worst and before you know it, you’ve got yourself dead and buried. In situations such as this, many people say that their faith never wavered. I’d put a brave face on things, but in my deepest, darkest moments, my faith did waver and I questioned. “God, you brought me this far,” I’d pray. “Are you going to take that all back?” I couldn’t help it. Stephen Rego: Throughout this
whole ordeal, even before she had her surgery, Maureen based her life on the Bible’s Jeremiah 29:11, where God says: “For I know the plans I
have for you.” That brought comfort to her. Every time something came up, Maureen said, “God, this is Your plan, we’ll run with it.” MR: I needed to get past my worry
and focus on my faith. Trusting God freed me from anguish, whatever happened. SR: Maureen refused to let the cancer
define her. She was determined to be the best wife, mother and colleague she could be. How did your church community figure into your recovery? MR: Prayer support was ongoing
and people would stop me and say, “I’m still praying for you.” Here were people who doubtless had concerns of their own, yet they were caring enough to care for me! It was humbling.
If you had to sum up these last 10 years, what would you say? MR: God’s brought me this far. Even
if I stepped out on a limb, He never let me fall. He’s given me wings and I’ve sort of flown—even if I’ve sometimes done it apprehensively!
SR: I look at what Maureen has been
through—how deep her faith is, how she sets a great example for her daughters and for everyone at our church—and I just try to follow in her footsteps. She’s an inspiration.
faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
Plastic Soup Every year, approximately eight million tonnes of plastic is washed into the ocean, almost all of it from land. It comes from the things we throw away after a single use— bottles, bags, food wrappers and straws—and from the tiny pieces of plastic used in manufacturing and by the cosmetic industry. Sun and waves break plastic down into smaller and smaller fragments, but it never disappears completely, floating through the world’s oceans like smog. This toxic soup threatens marine life and human health as it rises through the food chain.
So what can you do? Carry reusable shopping bags Use a refillable water bottle C hoose products without microbeads Participate in beach cleanups
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faithandfriends.ca I MAY 2017
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Published on May 1, 2017
To show Christ at work in the lives of real people, and to provide spiritual resources for those who are new to the Christian faith. http://...