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,
is the beginning of a new reality.
Dom Helder Camara
What a month we had in May! I confess that I still haven't recovered.
Our boys (and girl) fought some amazing boxing bouts
Our choir put on a wonderful choral performance
Our church broke bread with the Islamic community
We campaigned for justice in Palestine
And we opened the Binacrombi gym
And the last event was the greatest of them all to me, not only because it was ten years in the making, but more so because it brought together the participants from all the other events.
The fighters were there
Members of the choir were there
Christians and Muslims and social justice campaigners
If you weren't there, I"m really sorry, for it was a great weekend and the culmination of so many years of dreaming for me personally. I don't want to sound like one of those hyped up 'you can do it' type of preachers but, in truth, the successful completion of our bush gym is a miracle, and a testimony to God's commitment to this work.
Now our focus has to be on developing our programs for at-risk young people who will be the principal beneficiaries of the gym, though of course we do not wish to limit the use of these new facilities to any one group. Indeed, I'm hoping that I'll get to do some bush-sparring with every one of my online subscribers sooner or later!
Anyway, you can see the slideshow of the gym opening here, plus there's some pics from the weekend and from some of the other above-mentioned events right below. Just click on them to go full-size. You can also see our video of the gym opening further down the page.
This month is certainly a quieter one for me. I expect that I'll more than make up for it next month (as I'll explain in a moment).
Even so, as every fighter knows, nobody makes it through to the final bell without taking regular breaks. We all need the occasional cool drink and towelling down between rounds.
click the pics to see the full-size images
Fight Fathers USA Tour - July 2011
(click on map to see it full size)
As you'll see from the above map, we're planning another high-paced tour across the USA next month. The team this time will be made of Ange, myself, and Jim the Webmaster.
A lot of the details are yet to be filled in, but the basic outline is set. We'll be driving from the West Coast to the East over two weeks -arriving in San Diego on July 13 and flying out from Washington D.C. on July 28.
The basic idea of the tour will be to meet up with some more of our fighting-fathers.com members in person and to encourage and help equip you guys to share your passion on the Web.
As I say, the exact dates and locations shown above will no doubt be revised multiple times over the next few weeks, but we'll be adapting them in response to your feedback. If you live somewhere near one of the way-points shown in the map and would like to see us, contact me and I'll see what I can do. I will be making myself available for talks, sermons and friendly sparring sessions wherever possible.
I've decided to share my Pentecost sermon with you today. It might not be the most dynamic sermon I've ever given, but the topic is so important that I feel compelled to share it with you.
Pentecost is when we celebrate the birth of the church, and so our reading from Acts chapter 2 takes us back to that day when the Spirit of God took hold of Jesus' disciples in Jerusalem and got them involved in community building!
That day was filled with bizarre events - wind and fire and crazy behavior on the part of the disciples - but that day also has some very sobering lessons to teach us about our identity as a spiritual community?
Who is the church supposed to be? What are we supposed to be doing? What great purpose (if any) are we supposed to serve. I think you'll find that a goodly number of the answers to these questions can be found by looking at the Bible's account of the first Pentecost Sunday.
You can hear my complete Pentecost sermon by clicking the play button below or click here for the print version.
Video of the Month: The Opening of the Binacrombi Gym
If you missed it, you missed out!
May 28, 2011 was a historic day for us Fighting Fathers. It was the fulfillment of a ten-year-old dream - to construct a fight-training facility in the middle of the Australian bush were we could take our young people to train them, and help turn them into greater athletes and greater human beings.
Of course the larger part of the dream is still ahead of us. Now we have the facility completed it's time to work on developing the programs, which is what we are doing at the moment. In the meantime I'm hopeful that people from all over the country and from all over the world will make use of our beautiful bush gym.
Thank you to all who help bring this part o the dream to fruition!
OK fighter, I'm sure you've heard enough from me for today but I've still got one more very important thing I need to tell you about.
The young man you see alongside me in the pic is Fighting Father Mike Coleman, and it was taken just a few days before he left Sydney to join the Australian contingent sailing to Gaza in the current attempt to break the Israeli blockade (more details here).
God bless you Mike, and bring you safely home!
I'm hoping that we'll be able to do a teleconference linkup with Mike while he's en route to Gaza. If you're on the mailing list I'll let you know, but I'm sure you appreciate that communications on board the Free-Gaza flotilla will be limited, and may be disabled altogether by the IDF navy as the team get closer to their intended destination. I'll keep you posted as the saga unfolds.
I should add that the Israeli government has vowed that it will stop these ships reaching Gaza - all of which carry only humanitarian aid packages and letters of support - and that they will arrest everyone on board, and will deny them contact with their own embassies! Thus far the Australian government has responded only by apologising in advance to Mike and his ship-mates - saying that unfortunately they won't be able to be of any help. It goes without saying that I view this level of political cowardice as outrageous!
Some of us plan to rally outside the Sydney Town Hall this Saturday (July 2nd) in support of our courageous friends at sea. If you'd like to join us, we should be there from 1pm.
I'll hope to meet up with some of you guys in person then, and plenty more of you as we do our rapid driving tour across the USA. Do make contact if you want us to detour your way.
May the Lord bless and strengthen you for the work to which you have been called.