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Date for ezine: November 26, 2004
Subject for ezine: The Good Fight, No.22

The Good Fight


The Good Fight




.Father Dave's monthly newsletter
the site the camp the church the shop the book

  In this month's issue:
  The View from my Corner
  An intense month  
  Sermon of the Month  
  The Parable of the Vineyard  
  Sites of the Month  
  Six of the best!  
  Fight Tip of the Month  
  Interview with Mick Spinks: part one  

  The View from my Corner  
  Hi guys,

Well, it's gone 11pm at night, and I've just got home from dropping the Russian Pankration team back at their hotel. 

Thus ends a rather intense day, doing my best with a group of people who don't speak a word of English. We met at the airport, I drove them around, we ate together, and at no time did we ever manage to jointly understand a single word that passed between us. Of course, when we finally got into the ring together, we communicated perfectly.  A punch in the nose is exactly the same in Russian as it is in English, and in our case this tranlsated into immediate friendship.  Thank God for the universal language of the ring!

Yes, the 3rd World Pankration Championships are taking place this Sunday, November, 28, and I hope you can join us.  They are being held at the Debie & Abbey Borgia Community Recreation Centre, Illawarra Road, Marrickville South, and it all starts at 10am.

This tournament will spell a rather intense end an intense month for me.

I look back at the beginning of this month, and we seemed to have been living in a different world.  President Bush is still with us of course, but President Arafat is not.  In Jerusalem, our brother Morde Vanunu was re-arrested, and here in Sydney, on the eve of our Pankration tournament, the Australian government surprised us all by denying visas to representatives from most of the Islamic countries!   Was that coincidence or straighforward prejudice?  I'm not sure, but I must confess that not much on the international scene this month has given me grounds for rejoicing.

On a local level though we've had much to give thanks for. At the end of October, we filled Newtown RSL Club for Christians vs. Lions XVIII.  Then a week later, we filled Holy Trinity Church for a choral performance from the Jubilate Singers.  Both were fantastic events, with standing room only on each occasion, and each raised more than $5,000 for our work. I suppose music, like pugilism, is another universal language!

The other exciting thing that happened for me this month was having chapters of my book, "Sex, the Ring & the Eucharist", read out on ABC National Radio for a series of weekday mornings.  This was an extraordinary privilege, and it resulted in my book becoming the ABC's "most popular book of the week'.  What this means, I'm not exactly sure, but if someone could show me how I could use this good publicity to obtain a proper publishing deal (or something like that) I'd be extremely grateful.

I am genuinely grateful to God for the way in which the book has both helped us to fund our work this year, and also seems to have made a real difference in the lives of many people.  I am hopeful that this book still has more good work to accomplish. 

Oh!  And if you'd like to hear some of those readings, you'll be able to catch them on the ABC website, at least until the end of November, here.

Now I have one more very important thing to ask you before I let you go today, so please read on:

It has been an intense month, and the one ahead of us, with Christmas and all that comes with it, promises to be another intense one.  After that I'm going to take a much-needed break, and I'd like it very much if you could come and share some of that break with us.

On January 3rd, 2005, My family and I will be heading down to beautiful Binacrombi Bush Camp, and I'd like to invite you to come and join us, at least for one night, at no charge to yourself.  If you're willing to travel here from outside of Australia, then please make it a week, but if you're a local, see if you can't manage at least one night.

I won't bother spelling out all the details here.  If you're interested, send an email (a blank one will do) to and I'll send you back all the info right away.  Don't worry.  This won't add your name to any mailing list.  It's just a convenient way of getting the info to you.

God bless you all for your support this year.  I do hope that you'll allow me to say thank you to you by introducing you to the wonders of the Australian bush at Binacrombi. :-)

Your brother in the Good Fight,. Dave


  Sermon of the Month  

If you've seen my 'Hear me preach' section lately, you'll have noticed that I've completely revamped it.  I've combined the sermons and 'raves' into one large article database.  You can reach it directly here.  This should make my sermons easier to find and easier to read. 

What motivated me, you might wonder, to put time into upgrading the system?  Well, about a month ago I did a small piece of web housekeeping, and fixed the syntax of the folder name where I keep my online sermons.  It was just a piece of minor housekeeping, and I didn't expect that anybody would notice it.  What hadn't really occured to me at the time though, was it would cause a short-term problem for search engines directing people to my site if searches were made for my sermons.  Even so, how many people out there are searching for the sorts of sermons I write?  Well, the answer turned out to be 'a lot'! 

After making the syntax correction, I received exactly 598 error messages indicating that somebody had tried to find one of my sermons but failed!  Then I turned the notification script off!  It was too late to change what I had done, and it was just getting depressing.  In short, I realised again that a lot of people out there looking for this sort of material and, well, now I've made it easier for everyone to actually read it.

Encouraged by this, I commend to you my sermon on 'The Parable of the Vineyard' this month.  Why? Because these seem to be particularly dark days that we are living in right now, and this parable speaks to me of our world situation in a way in which few Bible passages do.

I first gave this sermon back in 1999, at a time when the world also seemed to be in a lot of turmoil.  Perhaps it's time I preached this sermon again.  Decide for yourself.  Click here


  Sites of the Month  
  I'm continuing with my six of the best theme today - offering you six of the best websites I've come across in the last month.
  • First cab off the rank this month has to be the Australian Pankration website.  This is one of Ange's sites, and has been freshly updated to help promote the World Championships.  You'll see Ange's hand in it right away through the artistic layout and good balance of colours.  Should such aesthetic considerations really matter on a fight site?  Judge for yourself.

  • For more great fight stuff, I'd encourage you to return to this month to read my friend Michael Ryan's alaysis of Kali Meehan's loss to Hasim Rock Rahman.  Michael has a wonderful appreciation of the human dimensions of the fight game, and his daily updates, leading up to the Meehan fight, are all worth reading.  Go to the main page, click on 'Dailies in the Shed' and take your choice from there, or go directly to Mike's articles on 'Why Kali Lost' by clicking here.

  • To a great fighter of a different sort - our friend and brother, Mordechai Vanunu.  If you missed the interview he did with Duncan Campbell for 'The Guardian', make sure you do read it.  This interview was given shortly before Morde's re-arrest, and it may be a while before we see Morde give such a frank and comprehensive interview again.  Click here.

  • On an equally sombre note, I want to recommend a blog to you, entitled "News from Paletsine and Israel".  I've had the priviage this month of coming into contact with some rather brilliant Palestinian human rights activists, and contact with them led me to this site.  For a perspective that's most definately independant of mainstream media, I commend this site to you.

  • And while we're on the theme of non-mainstream perspectives, let me appeal to my fellow Internet Marketers to read an article by friend and subscriber Gary Durkin, entitled, "Wake Up Homer Simpson". In the Internet Marketing world, you very rarely see articles as direct and honest as this one.  I commend it to anyone who is even vaguely considering trying to raise revenue online.

  • And finally this month, let me commend to you a community site by the name of Project Angels, that's been put together to raise funds for Operation Smile.  The site offers email, chat room, photo gallery, etc.  It's not the only site of it's type out there by any means, but it's the only one I know of with a charitable aim.  If you don't know Operation Smile, they fund reconstructive surgery for children in developing communities, and are a terrific group.

There you have it guys.  I trust you'll get a lot out of these sites, and if you've come across a site worth sharing, do let me know, and I'll try to include it next month.

  Fight Tip of the Month  

This month we begin an interview with Aussie Fighting Legend, Mick Spinks. Mick was one of the trail-blazers of full-contact Maritial Arts Fighting, not only in this country, but in the world.  He holds the extraordinary distinction of never having been defeated, and Mick has had a lot of fights!

Mick maintained his unbeaten record when, at the age of 50, he won our 'Aussie Fighting Legend' show earlier this year!  Mick is an icon in the fight game, and a remarkable man. Click here.


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