Category Archives: grief

A Blue Christmas Service: If You’re Hurting at Christmas

What is a Blue Christmas Service? Guest writer Melanie recently reflected on the process of putting together a Blue Christmas service at Frenchs Forest Baptist Church, where she is a pastor: The concept of a Blue Christmas Service was new for me this year. The idea behind the services is to provide a quiet, contemplative service […]

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10 Things I Learned from Preparing a Blue Christmas Church Service [Guest]

A warm welcome to guest poster, Melanie Carroll, who is writing today about the Blue Christmas service she ran on the weekend. Melanie is married to Sean and has two young adult children. She trained at Carey Baptist College in Auckland, New Zealand, but is currently living across the ditch in Sydney where she is […]

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What’s the Point of Lent? #1: Starting with the Old Testament

No one can be right or wrong about how to celebrate Lent, I realised the other day. Lent is a church tradition, not something instituted by Jesus or the apostles. So we’re all in the same boat, theologically speaking, of needing to figure out how Lenten practices might sensibly and meaningfully connect us to God […]

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Matters of Life and Death: Euthanasia

‘It is a tragedy when the human spirit dies before the body. But the answer is not to kill the body too, but to revive the spirit.’  So said Prof Margaret Somerville at a conference on euthanasia held in Wellington a couple of years ago. On Sunday I tried to canvass the arguments on both sides of […]

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Matters of Life and Death: Dementia and Ageing

I read some of Sandy’s story on Sunday: I am 57 and was diagnosed in 2004 with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. I was a bank manager and was very active in my community and church. One afternoon, I left work and did not know how to get home. This was the start of a “downhill no return” into the Alzheimer’s world. I am […]

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Matters of Life and Death: Disability

Some of you will know that I’m living with postnatal depression. It’s hard. What I said on Sunday about disability is stuff I believe both in my head and because of my own experience: We think life should be perfect and comfortable. But God comes to us in the imperfect and the uncomfortable. We think life is […]

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Talking about Baby Loss: Stephanie’s Story [Guest]

A warm welcome and heartfelt thanks to Stephanie, a Dunedin mother, lawyer and regular commenter here, who is generously telling some of her story of baby loss today. She is available to talk further in the comments, so do feel free to ask questions and share your experiences. I always feel uncomfortable when a stranger […]

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