Subject for ezine:
Partners in the Good Fight
Father Dave's Partner's Ezine
in the Good Fight
one man dreams, it is just a dream, but when we all dream together, it
is the beginning of a new reality.
Dom Helder Camara
It's Father Dave again and I'm glad to be back with you after more than
three months without an ezine!
Yes, it's been a very hectic time of late, and I must confess that a
great deal of that time was consumed by our campaign to save my friend,
Sheikh Mansour Leghaei, from forced deportation from Australia on the
basis of crimes that he knew nothing about!
It's a long story. I've chronicled all of it on www.savethesheikh.com.
The short version is that Mansour was accused, judged, sentenced and
executed, all without every being told what he had supposedly done
wrong and thus without ever getting a chance to defend himself.
Many of us across the community found it hard to believe that our
country would treat anybody like this, but after a series of rallies,
dozens of media interviews, and thousands of letters, phone calls,
petitions and prayers, Mansour was deported last Sunday night.
You'll find a video of the final farewell at the airport here. It was an
emotional time and, as you'll see, I had trouble holding back the tears.
the battle is not over yet, and the United Nations Human Rights
Committee has given the Australian government until
October 21st to respond to the accusation that they have violated Dr
Leghaei's fundamental human rights, thus breaching a series UN Human Rights Treaties
to which this country is a signatory - treaties that guarantee the right to a fair trial
and the right of non-citizens to be treated equally to citizens.
So stay tuned. We'll take a quick breather between rounds and then get
back into the action. Personally I have no intention of
giving up this fight until we achieve justice, such
that everyone who comes to these shores - Christian, Muslim,
Jew, citizen, tourist and refugee - is guaranteed a fair go,
regardless of their religion or nationality!
Of course anybody who has been watching the recent carry-on in this
country in our 'corridors
of power' knows that justice hasn't been high on the
national agenda. Our Prime Minister was assassinated a few days back by
the woman who was supposed to be his loyal lieutenant. And it
was all because he wanted to tax the multi-billion dollar mining
companies! The first move of the new PM was to emasculate the proposed
tax in such a way that had the big mining bosses hooting their
approval. And they sold the revised package to the public by
claiming that 'what is
good for the multi-billion dollar mining companies is good for
everyone.' I don't know what is sadder - the
fact that they expected people to believe such a line or the fact that
so many apparently did!
Meanwhile the church in this country continues to focus mainly on religious issues,
such as the threat that a secular alternative to Scripture-teaching
might be offered in public schools. When will our church leaders
realise that we accomplish more in the communication of the
Gospel by demonstrating a genuine concern for the fate of our suffering
neighbours than we do by trying to force our way back into the
You'll have to forgive me if I sound negative today. It's been a hard
battle of late and I am very tired. Even so, there is so much to be
thankful for, and I am privileged to have so many good people fighting
alongside me. Thank you for being a part of the battle.
In faith, I do believe we shall overcome some day.
click the pics to see the full-size images
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Today I particularly recommend the links concerning the IDF's attack on
the Gaza Aid Flotilla.
It amazes me that so many in the world bought the idea that the
heavily-armed commandos who attacked the ships were somehow the victims, forced to
the shoot multiple civilians on board in order to defend themselves!
Can we imagine how the world would have viewed the incident had it been
the other way round - if armed Palestinian terrorists had
descended from helicopters on to a ship filled with Jewish activists
who then tried to defend themselves with sticks and push the attackers
off the boat?
I'm pretty sure in that case we'd all be cheering for the courageous
civilians, but for some reason when Israel is the aggressor it always
seems more complicated!
Virtual Pulpit: The Gospel
was never my idea!
"For I would have you know,
brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man's gospel.
For I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I
received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ." (Galatians
I come under a lot of criticism for being outspoken. Some
people love me but there are plenty that seem to hate me, perhaps
especially because I've given my support and frienship to a Muslim.
Some Christians seem to think I've betrayed
While I find much of this hurtful, it
does make me feel a little closer to St. Paul when he says, ‘this Christian Gospel that I
preach was never my idea!’
Hit the play button
if you'd like to hear my take on the first chapter of Paul's letter to
the church in Galatia. Otherwise you'll find the written
It was both a great and a terrible day for us at Parliament House on
June 3rd. It was a great day because it brought together more than 1000
of us, which was no mean feat for a mid-week (working day) event.
We were mainly Muslims but there was certainly also a significant
contingent from the Christian community. Our rally was harmonious and
respectful, and the leader of the Federal Police
later told us that we were the most well-behaved group he'd ever dealt
That was the positive side of the experience. The down-side was
watching our Government completely turn their backs on us!
I've never experienced anything like it. The police
kept us hidden from the public thoroughfares as much as possible and
didn't let us get anywhere near the steps of Parliament House.
Not only did nobody from the Prime Minister's office come
down to accept our petition (as regularly happens) but they wouldn't
even allow a single member of our group to leave it in an envelope
on the front desk!
It's hard to make sense of why our so-called elected representatives
chose to leave us in the care of the riot squad (whose bus was
conspicuosly present in the background the entire day) rather
than engage with us. What were these people afraid of? My
guess is ... the truth!
OK fighter, it's time to wind up, but before I let you go I have a few
vital announcements to make:
POSITIONS VACANT: We are looking for a new
caretaker to take the reigns at Binacrombi
Bush Camp. Our current caretaker family, the
Tramas, after three years of wonderful ministry, will be moving on to
new work in the next couple of months. If you like dirt-bike
riding, think you can manage a remote bush facility, have plenty of
handyman skills and love working with at-risk young people,
let me know.
If the above position sounds just a little too
challenging, we are also looking for volunteer teachers to help staff
our new school - Trinitys Learning Centre.
The school caters to young people who have dropped out of the
normal schooling system. I'm hoping that there might be a
couple of retired school-teachers in the area who are available, but
even persons with rudimentary teaching skills are welcome to volunteer.
Father Jim Hannagan has taken on the job of
our official webmaster.
Apart from ensuring that these ezines get published every fortnight,
Jim's primary job will be to help build our member
site - assisting members to build their own sites, publish
ideas, and generally develop their online platform. If
you'd like to discuss your online needsd with Jim, contact him directly
through the Fighting Father's messaging system.
Please send me your feedback and stay in touch.
I'll hope to hear from you soon. In the meantime,
may the Lord bless and strengthen you for the work to which you have