Sydney Morning Herald’s Article On My Radio Work

While his 2GB colleagues earn millions, Bill Crews gets a casual rate He supports voluntary euthanasia and opposes school chaplains. No wonder people ask, ‘Are you really a minister?’ He supports gay rights, voluntary euthanasia and decriminalising illicit drug use. He’s a father of four whose messy divorce became tabloid fodder. He’s even been accused of inflaming racial tensions. He’s also a 75-year-old Christian minister working for conservative Sydney station 2GB*. “People often ask me, ‘Are you really a minister?'” says Reverend Bill Crews, whose Sunday night program attracts more than a quarter of Sydney’s radio audience. “If they don’t know my show, they assume it’ll be a church service with hymns; that I’ll be pouring conservative Christian ideology down their throats.” In fact, Crews opens each broadcast with a quote from the Islamic poet Rumi: “Come, come, whoever you are … it doesn’t matter.” Recent guests include a musical theatre star, a union leader and a psychologist – but current members of parliament are banned, lest they pollute the airwaves with scripted talking points. When the show launched in 2002, he had two friends at the helm: atheist Brian Carlton, who gave him a crash course in radio, and gay man Jason Kerr, who remains his producer to this day. (Crews began campaigning for marriage equality more than two decades ago.) His audience includes people of all faiths and none. “But I never ask the callers to tell me,” he says. “Why does it matter?” In many ways, Crews is the opposite of his high-profile colleagues at 2GB. While they negotiate multi-million contracts (including Ray Hadley, who has...

Together we can feed more rough sleepers this winter

The seasons are changing and it’s getting colder. I’m sure you have felt it, even tucked up in your comfortable bedroom at night. So imagine what it’s like for the homeless. Their bedroom could be a wet and windy bus shelter. I’m sure you’ve noticed there are more and more homeless people. They are in suburbs where they never used to be. These rough sleepers make all sorts of places their bedrooms. A little while ago I came across a rough sleeper who slept on the roofs of buildings. “It is safe up there”, he told me. “No one ever looks up, so I can sleep without feeling scared”. A homeless woman I know spends all day looking for a safe spot to bed-down in a park. “It is really scary at night. I have to find somewhere where I am well hidden”, she said. Incredibly, I have even come across rough sleepers who were blackened with soot because they slept in burned out buildings for safety. The face of homelessness in Sydney is changing and we need to change with it. Rough sleepers aren’t just in the city now, they are in the outer suburbs too. So we are sending our food vans there, where the need is growing fastest.  Our food vans are now taking our nutritious meals to the needy across Sydney. In fact, these vans are even delivering our healthcare and counselling services to the rough sleepers as well. Their bedroom might be a park bench, but our vans are like their kitchen and family. I know that when you walk past a rough sleeper...

Give kids an Easter miracle – the gift of literacy

Easter is a really important time of year for me. Not just because of its religious significance, but because it reminds me a better future is possible whenever we use our compassion to lift people out of despair. That’s exactly what your support enables me and my team to do every single day, like the nutritious meals that stave off hunger in the homeless.  But what if we could intervene to break the poverty-cycle in the first place? Thirty years ago I realised education was the miracle that poverty-stricken kids needed to get new lives. I realised that an inability to read was denying many of these kids a chance at a better future. Ever since, I’ve been running literacy programs for children from the poorest suburbs. Thousands of them have already benefited! Now I’m thrilled to tell you that I am rolling out a brand new literacy program. It’s based on the phonics method – the ability to hear, identify, and blend the distinct sounds in the English language. This new program is even more effective!  Indeed it’s needed more than ever. According to the most recent data a total of 24,309 year-5 students are below the national minimum literacy standard*. That’s the national figure, so think of the proportion who come from the poorest families and most disadvantaged suburbs.  My literacy program directly targets the needy kids. We go into the most poverty-stricken places to give the kids the miracle of literacy – the chance to break free of poverty. The children attend my literacy program for 18 weeks where they receive intensive tuition. The program gives these...

My Days With The Refugees In Calais, France

On the forecourt of Liverpool Street station in London sits a memorial to the “Children of the Kindertransport”. The plaque says it is in thanks for the 10,000 unaccompanied, mainly Jewish children who were allowed to escape to England shortly before World War II.  The look on the children’s faces is one of grim determination, pain and suffering and in spite of all that a sense of profound personal dignity. We all know what happened subsequently to those left behind. Millions of people died particularly children.  Eli Wiesel talks about being haunted by the small frightened face of his beloved seven-year-old sister as she, with her mother, was separated off by the Nazis from him and his dad to what we eventually learned was her death. World War II was such a horror we hoped we would never see it’s like again. Ironically, World War I before that was supposed to be the war to end all wars. Racism, bigotry, extreme nationalism, we all know what that leads to: – war, death, pain and suffering. Yet we let it happen! We sit by and let it happen!  Like Pontius Pilate we sit on our hands and let it happen. Perhaps one reason we let it happen is because we don’t go out and stare that suffering in the face. We prefer to stay at home, read the newspapers or watch television and, out of our comfortable circumstances, make comments. Full of our own problems, we don’t want to look any further. Others prefer the abdication option. That is to ‘leave it to our leaders’, assuming they will do the...

My Soul Restored

I am in Dharamsala the current home of His Holiness the Dalai Lama visiting friends. When here, I visit the Dalai Lama’s Temple to light a candle and pray. I find a visit there restores my soul.       On this visit the 23rd Psalm which includes the words “restores my soul” was rattling around in my head. If you don’t know it, here it is:-   The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever. As you can see, this Psalm concludes with the words “I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever”. I was contemplating those very words when I actually witnessed them come to life. Behind a large temple pillar, I noticed an elderly man on a piece of foam matting praying. He looked like he had been there for a long time. I asked who he was and was told he was a retired former high Tibetan official who now spends his days in the temple praying. So,...

My 2018 Christmas Highlights

 On Christmas Eve two of the former homeless kids I took in years ago and slept on the pews of the church came and visited me. I love Jesse and Lois with all my heart. They have both made real successes of their lives. We all cried as we were so happy to see each other and be with each other again.   For me the highlight of our Christmas Day free lunch for the poor needy and homeless was when I just sat randomly at a table. The woman sitting next to me was a child care worker and we began to talk. “I had to get divorced two or three years ago and it’s been really hard”. She told me that her children were with their father, she was estranged from the rest of her family members, was alone in life. She had been to our Christmas lunches twice previously and she said she would not know where she would cope if she didn’t have Christmas Lunch with us. She told me she was planning to live in Queensland from next year.   We talked for quite a while and the sadness and pain on her face was haunting. As we were talking, I thought “I don’t care if no-one else really doesn’t need to be here, this woman actually does” and for me it made the whole day worthwhile. Of course after that someone else said exactly the same thing and then someone else. There were so so many people who really needed to be there.   Just a few of the thousands who turned up. John Singleton turned...

Why I love Christmas at Exodus

    Every Christmas Day at my Exodus Foundation we hold a giant Christmas party. Thousands of  poor, needy, lonely and homeless people turn up for a free hot traditional Christmas Day lunch with all the trimmings and a present from Santa. 2GB broadcast from there.  We all have such a good time.  Here’s a four minute video of it to put you in the mood for Christmas.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9A1Gxx6btso  And by the way, Merry Christmas   God Bless Bill  ...

Every kid should be able to read a Christmas card

We all love to receive Christmas cards. The messages of love written inside give us a warm sense of belonging, especially when they come from our kids. But imagine if that didn’t happen. Imagine if a child was unable to write or even read a Christmas card. It’s a heartbreaking reality that is going to happen countless thousands of times this Christmas. Thankfully, my Bill Crews Charitable Trust is working to improve the situation! We’re rolling out a brand new phonics-based literacy program for the poorest and most disadvantaged kids in Australia. I’m sure you know that being able to read is more important than ever for children today. In the past there were certain manual jobs that didn’t require literacy, but they have disappeared in this computer age. Now being able to read isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity of life. So you might expect no child would leave primary school illiterate. Sadly, that is not the case. For a variety of reasons some kids miss out. Maybe their home life has been chaotic. Maybe extreme poverty or illness has meant long absences from school. Perhaps English was a second language. Or maybe a child’s brain has simply been wired differently, meaning learning to read is like trying to program a computer without an instruction book. Whatever the reason the other children in the class move ahead and these kids are left behind. For over 25 years I have been striving to help these children. In fact more than 3,500 of them have been taught to read thanks to our programs. We are always looking for better ways to teach the...

Host your own Rev. Bill Crews Xmas Day Lunch

Was great to have my mate Karl Stefanovic visit us to see how we’re planning to feed thousands of hungry and needy people on Christmas Day. Do you want to host a ‘Rev. Bill Crews Xmas Day Lunch’ of your own in 2019? Simply click here to tells us where you’d like to host it and fill in your contact details. We’ll get back to you as soon as we...

I was there as abuse survivors got apology

Yesterday I was honoured to be amongst the 400 invited guests in the Great Hall of Parliament House Canberra to hear the National Apology to the Victims of Institutionalised Child Sexual Abuse. Just getting here was a difficulty. I was told I could not attend because I was a so-called “religious” person. The distrust the victims have for religious institutions is palpable and the mere thought of somebody coming in that category was enough to cause a lot of hurt. I persisted saying how for the past almost fifty years I have been taking their stories to the authorities and demanding action from people whose moral compass should have made them behave better. I vividly remember working with one little Aboriginal girl who I later took to the Royal Commission. She had been repeatedly raped by the authorities and church people who were supposed to look after her. She believed she was being raped because of the colour of her skin and so would rub her body against stone walls trying to get the blackness off. It was my involvement with kids like her that made me determined to be there. Ultimately the authorities agreed. As the apology got underway I sat next to a survivor I knew. We held hands, hugged and cried together for the whole time and I could feel her body shudder at the memories. Surprisingly, many of the victims did not respond well to Scott Morrison’s speech. Some even cat-called. Perhaps they thought he was too close to the churches? I personally felt the Prime Minister was treated unfairly as he was obviously moved...

Help me teach the poorest kids to read

I want to share some exciting news with you! I’m overjoyed to let you know my Bill Crews Charitable Trust has launched a brand new reading program for the most disadvantaged children in our community. Called “Everyone Can Read”, the program is specifically designed to fit in with regular school life and its structure makes it even more appealing to the kids who attend. We are rolling the new program out to the most needy kids in NSW and the Northern Territory, with an initial intake of 80 students. We’ve already taught 3,000 kids As I’m sure you know, in the past 20-years we have taught over 3,000 kids to read. Our new and improved program will enable us to give even more children the literacy skills they need to succeed. We have also introduced some important initiatives to support the kids in our “Everyone Can Read” program, like a breakfast club where kids arrive early and have a meal before putting their heads down to catch up on literacy. This is especially important as many of our students come from impoverished families who can’t afford breakfast. Our new program can teach even more I’m sure I don’t need to spell out the benefits of literacy to you. Suffice to say many of our past students have grown and gone on to university and prosperous careers, rather than facing a years on welfare. Indeed, we calculated that over their lifetime these students will save the government $553-million. That is the power of reading and the power of what you and I can achieve together. I am passionate about giving...

RIP Robert Kennedy

Today, June 6, is always a sad day for me. Not only is it 74th Anniversary of the D-Day landings in France it is also (this year) the 50th anniversary of the death of Robert Kennedy. For many people hope for a better world died with Robert Kennedy.   I will always remember his speech a few months earlier on the death of Martin Luther King. In it he said:- What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence or lawlessness; but love and wisdom, and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of justice toward those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or they be black.” We could do with a bit of that here in Australia and, come to think of it, in most countries of this world. I, and many others, consider his speech to be the greatest speech ever made. It is up there with the Gettysburg address. I think Robert Kennedy is the greatest President America never had and when we look at the Presidency and the political polarisation today, I grieve for what we have...

With Your Support We Work Wonders

Not long ago I woke up on a plastic mat laid out on the concrete floor of a building near Bangkok’s chaotic Central Railway Station. It’s not the sort of place you might expect to find a church minister, but there I was, among a bunch of homeless street kids. We’d all slept there in that place of safety – a place called The Hub – which your support has brought to life. The Hub in Bangkok is supported by my Bill Crews Charitable Trust. At The Hub we do our best to rescue street kids by providing a place of safety, nurturing and life-changing education programs. Children end up there from all over Thailand and neighbouring countries. Sometimes they are fleeing their home villages, but more often these kids have fallen victim to child trafficking. The street kids turn to us Hundreds of kids turn to us for help. Sometimes their stories have a profound effect on me. I especially remember one young boy named Anurat. His parents loved him a lot, but they were rural and poverty-stricken, and they died very young. This left little Anurat alone and vulnerable. It breaks my heart to tell you that he was a victim of the sex industry. By the time I met Anurat at The Hub he was dying of AIDS. He and I became very close. We would talk at The Hub for hours. His deep understanding of life was at odds with his age. Unfortunately, all my compassion could not save him from the disease that ravaged his little body. I give thanks to you though, because...

When the homeless give you everything

I was sitting at a table in our Loaves & Fishes Free Restaurant for the homeless at the weekend eating lunch with two homeless men. Both were tall, skinny and wore the look of those who had spent a fair bit of time recently outdoors. “I pick up my new dentures tomorrow”, one of them said. “It’s going to make me look so much better and I’m sure I’ll be able to get a job now”. I looked closely at his face and could see the indent in his mouth where the teeth were missing. The centrepiece of his top lip was drawn inwards, distorting his face a bit. I could imagine how a new set of dentures from our free dental clinic would fix all of that disfiguring. “You know”, I said “I know one of the richest men in Australia and he is so lonely and sad. Riches don’t make you happy”. “No”, he said. Then he looked at me closely and said, “You know Bill, I have learned that the purpose of life is to give. You are born into this world with nothing and you leave it with nothing. The only important thing you can do along the way is to give”. “Yeah”, his mate chimed in. “I don’t have anything and tonight I’m sleeping in this boardin’ house but today I feel ten feet tall because I am not drinking. I have not drunk for months now and I feel happier and better than I ever did”. They didn’t know it but at that moment these two who had nothing had given me everything! They had...

My experience washing the feet of the homeless

At lunchtime very Maundy Thursday, the day before Good Friday, in our Loaves and Fishes Free Restaurant I wash the feet of as many homeless guests as I can in memory of Jesus’ washing the feet of his disciples before he was arrested tortured and executed. I started doing this in protest at the way the church had made a ritual of it where only goodly religious people did it to each other with all the church pomp and ceremony around it, making it, in a way, remote from life itself. I remember, on hearing that I was going to do it, one elderly religious lady asked me if I was going to wear my robes. “No.” I told her. As the guests file into our restaurant I grab them by the hand and lead them to a chair, a tub of water and some towels. They sit in the chair put their feet in the tub and I wash their feet. It is such a moving, spiritual experience for me. As I wash their feet the guests cannot help but tell me their life stories and a real gentle loving bond develops. Every year there is a story that moves me to tears. This year I noticed a hooded, homeless woman walking in for a meal and I knew I had to wash her feet. I lead her to the chair, she took her sandals off and immersed her feet in the warm water. “I have been homeless for a long time” she said. “Not just in Sydney but in other cities too. I have mental issues and...

Let me share something wonderful

I wanted to share something wonderful with you. It almost moved me to tears and it shows how, when we work together, we can give a child a brand new start. Over many years my Bill Crews Charitable Trust has run the MultiLit Literacy Tutorial program in Darwin. It gives lots of Aboriginal kids the literacy skills they need to succeed. At the end of each program we celebrate with a graduation, and what recently happened was extra special. It made heaven sing! One young Aboriginal boy stepped up to read a note of thanks. He’d struggled through the program more than most. Nevertheless he slowly began to read. One word at a time. Expressing his gratitude. To all of us in the audience – his classmates and the parents – it seemed to take forever. But he pushed through and finished with a satisfied smile. Then the magic happened. The audience burst into rapturous applause. The young boy beamed and I’m sure all heaven sung in that moment! Designing even better programs Over the decades the literacy programs I’ve been involved in have taught over 1,000 Aboriginal kids reading and writing skills that have changed their lives. Right now me and my team at the Bill Crews Charitable Trust are exploring the latest educational and support methods, involving earlier intervention as well as more intensive family care. We want to design even better programs. I hope you can find it in your heart to support me in this. I remember one young student telling me that education was her ticket out of poverty. She is now completing a...

My speech in support of the Kurdish people – 10th Feb, 2018

I regard myself as an ordinary Australian. Nothing more and nothing less. I do not regard myself as left-wing or right-wing, nor am I a member of any political party. I am an Australian and proud of it. Being Australian and probably because of our beginnings being rooted in prisons, chains and the lash I firmly believe in freedom of the individual. That is freedom to be who we are, believe what we believe as long as it brings no harm to anyone else. However, my life has taught me that there is always some bugger trying to take your freedom away. There is always some tin pot despot wanting to make you conform to what they regard as the way to be. They want you to toe their line and if you don’t they will try to punish or destroy you.  This may be religiously, politically socially but often it’s not the way most of us want to be.  In other words, they want to impose on us ways of life we don’t necessarily want to take up.  We are quite happy to live by the code of “Don’t do anything to anyone else you wouldn’t want done to you”. To achieve these aims, despots use fear in all forms of threats, armies, walls and structures they regard as strong, brutal, impregnable and forceful. But the smell of freedom is like love, it’s like the wind. The wind blows where it blows. It blows through the windows of buildings; through the cracks in and over the walls and in the hearts many of those who hold the weapons....

Walking the line in Bangkok

As many of you know, through my work with homeless, abused and traffickerd children I am on the Board of Childline Thailand. I do this through my Bill Crews Charitable Trust, of which I am the founder and CEO. Last Friday night my friend Ilya Smirnoff, CEO of Childline Thailand and I went for a walk amongst the slums and squatters areas of Bangkok. Eventually he led me to under a tollway and to walk along a railway line which snaked towards the port. All along the Railway line, within inches of the railway carriages which would pass by were huts, shacks, also tin and corrugated iron coverings under which were shops, laundromats, beauty shops, hairdressers; the makings of a whole economy. We could see inside many of the buildings where hair was being done and the crates and crates of soft drink and goods for sale. As we walked along the line I could not believe how lucky I was to see this and be part of it. What I notice about this and other similar communities is the sense of connection everyone has with each other. People there feel part of something we in the west have lost to our detriment. There is a community here. That’s not to say its all good though. As there were many kids playing, many on the railway track itself, I thought of all the toys we had and Ilya suggested that we set up a toy library so that we can keep an eye on the kids as they come to swap the toys. Many of them contact Childline when...

My Christmas message

This Christmas many children won’t share our good fortune. They’ll endure bleak conditions of grinding poverty, but I have good news. My Bill Crews Charitable Trust has already given thousands of kids like this a better future and with your ongoing support we’re well placed to help even more. I’m sure you know that I’ve been striving to improve the lives of the poor and the vulnerable for 45 years. I gave away my trade as an Electronics Engineer to help abandoned youth in the Sydney’s red-light district of Kings Cross. Today my commitment to homeless and at-risk young people is as strong as ever. Support through education Thanks to your support, the innovative work done by my Bill Crews Charitable Trust is saving kids through education. Literacy literally changes their lives – no matter where they live. Over 3,000 desperately needy children in NSW, Queensland and the Northern Territory have benefited from The Bill Crews Charitable Trust MultiLit Literacy program in the past 20 years. An exciting new way to help Now we are about to embark on an exciting new venture. A program of support that goes beyond literacy to include family therapy and other cutting edge techniques designed to break the cycle of poverty. I’m dedicated to giving vulnerable youngsters a new start. I know it’s the greatest gift of all, especially at Christmas. That’s why I’m asking you to support my work with a Christmas donation today. Your Christmas gift will enable me and my team at The Bill Crews Charitable Trust to lift even more young people out of poverty. It will give them...

Government neglect made Martin Place homeless inevitable

The tent city in Martin Place arose out of a perfect storm of events. Events which not only result in an inevitable rise in homelessness, but also tend to make us all feel more fearful of the future. People are noticing a widening gap between the rich and the poor. They are wondering why a relative few receive increasingly huge salaries while their own pay packets remain stagnant in the face of rising costs of living. Rising house prices and rents leave many fearful that they are only one pay packet away from catastrophe. A significant proportion of homelessness can be attributed to the housing crisis. With mortgage rates at record lows and many families being in debt, my guess is just a small increase in interest rates will add many more people to the list of homeless. Seeing pictures of the tents in Martin Place must leave many people with a nagging feeling in the back of their minds: “This could be me”. The face of homelessness is already changing. Up to 40% of all homeless people now are women, many with children, escaping domestic violence. One bright spot amid this societal gloom is the public concern expressed over the plight of those genuine homeless in Martin Place. It shows that compassion for the underdog is alive and well, even amongst those whose economic circumstances are not a source of concern. I know many wealthy people are very worried about the way they see society heading. They understand all the authorities can do is move homeless people on from one place to another. Like Moses looking for the...

Dalai Lama’s religion will outlast the Chinese occupation of Tibet

Take a look at this photo. Take a careful look. The face of Lobsang Lozin. When I first saw it I was struck by the kindness reflected in it. It’s a very compassionate face, yet there is an element of devil may care in it too. It’s like the face of someone who would go to the wall for you.  Strong, cheeky and brave. To me, it’s the face of a son every man would love to have and every mother would treasure. I looked him up on the internet to try and gauge if I was right and all I got was “Lobsang who has been described as an exemplary student with an excellent track record in his monastic studies set himself on fire at around 12 noon near his monastery’s main prayer hall and began walking towards the local Chinese office before falling down.” I saw his face on a wall in the Tibetan Museum in Dharamsala. His was one of 147 faces of Tibetan monks who had self-immolated in protest over the intolerable burden of being under the Chinese Government’s occupation of Tibet. We all know today that Tibet is basically a Chinese Government gaol. The native Tibetans are being strangled in their own country. They have no freedom to be themselves and they are being overrun by countless foreigners being moved in to make a minority of the very people who have lived there for countless generations.  They are punished if they even have photographs of their leader, The Dalai Lama. The pain they must be suffering both psychological and physical cannot be described. Yet,...

Give a child a better future

You might not realise it, but your support is giving impoverished children one of the greatest gifts of all – the ability to read and imagine a better tomorrow. It’s already happened to over 3,000 kids who’ve completed my Bill Crews Charitable Trust MultiLit Literacy program. Just last week 11-year old Susan proudly turned to me and said: “I can go to university if I keep this up!”. She can and a future way beyond her wildest expectations awaits. The kids are in poverty It all starts with 6 months intensive reading tuition in one of our centres. Because the kids all come from such poor backgrounds we don’t charge any fees. That’s why your ongoing support is crucial. A group of three young Aboriginal brothers recently completed our program. The poverty they suffered is hard to describe, but spite everything they had a drive to succeed. One by one they learned to read and the eldest boy won the Northern Territory Chief Minister’s Award for the greatest improvement in literacy. I had tears in my eyes when I was told of it. Their potential needs unlocking If you give, our successes can be limitless. I have lost count of the number of mothers who’ve thanked me for the change in their son or daughter. I love helping these kids and their potential needs our support to be unlocked. When that happens the results are remarkable. One of our students went on to get a post-graduate degree in medicine. Many others are at university. Former students from our Gladstone centre have grown up to get great trade jobs and...

My hour with His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Yesterday I went to visit my old friend, His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, Tibet. It was an absolutely beautiful morning as I spent time waiting for His Holiness on the veranda of His residence. I could see He was in a side room being filmed in conversation with a group of people. As He came out of the room His face lit up when he saw me. “My dear friend from Australia” He said, “Come with me” as we hugged tightly and I kissed Him on the top of His head. He led me to a large room at the end of the veranda. On a carpet were two lounge chairs and a coffee table where He motioned for me to sit. There were only two other people in the room. Chimmi, His private secretary and a translator. They were seated on smaller chairs near the wall. As we sat down He motioned to the cups of tea, looked at me and said “Welcome to my home, my dear old friend”. He then told the interpreter and Chimmi how I had called Him a good Christian (and I think He is) and how He thought I was a good Buddhist (which I am)! As we were sitting He drew a beautiful watch out of a small bag. “This was given to me by some people at a conference”, He said, “And I want to give it to you”. He tried to put it on my wrist but the band was a bit too tight. He was determined to put it on properly. “It’s okay like that”, I...

Being brave enough to lose yourself

Every now and then I get tempted to put one of my sermons up on the blog. A rush of egotism I feel I might have something worthwhile to say. However, when I read the transcript I realise all I am reading is just words. You see, religion is not words, it is more than that, it’s not beliefs, it’s more than that. It affects the core of you that is you. It is what you do with the knowledge that core has given you that’s all important. The other day I was talking to a friend of mine who was raving about someone’s latest sermon. From what I could see it was all words. This sermon went into minute detail explaining the meaning of words going right back to their ancient Greek roots. All well and good but without action these words mean nothing. They are just an interesting way of talking about the evolution of language. Many sermonisers also like to quote philosophy or philosophical passages. They can be helpful but what I have found is just because people agree with the sentiment behind philosophical concepts it doesn’t mean they practice it. Just because we recognise something is good for us it does not mean we automatically do it. There is a vast gap between recognising and doing. I think about that a lot particularly in today’s world where we are bombarded by words. It is almost as if silence is not acceptable any more. It has to be filled with either music or words. I have noticed in many charismatic church services many people become captivated by...