Forget Me Not: A Short Story

PRESCRIPT: Like the other short story, “Kintsukuroi” that I have posted on this blog, the idea and shape of “Forget Me Not” pretty much occurred to me in its entirety. For various reasons, it took a little longer to write; and I have sat on it for a few months, tinkering with it here and there. But I now feel that it’s at least in presentable shape. Enjoy! Continue reading “Forget Me Not: A Short Story”

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I’m Sorry, I’m Leaving You…But You Can Come With Me

This is it. This is the end.

Well, not the end. But an end.

The end of this particular blog, at any rate. After however many years posting my thoughts, prayers, and reflections on faith and a whole lot of other stuff, I’m pulling the plug, switching off the lights, enacting whatever other metaphor or cliché comes to mind.

Which isn’t to say I’m falling silent, or that I’ll be deleting this blog. Rather it’s for two reasons.

The first is that my podcast Ergasia is going to be my primary focus of attention from now on. If you wan to know what I’m thinking and getting up to, then head on over. I’d love to bump into you again.

The second is that I have a new blog! It’s called Working the Lectionary. In this blog, I’ll be trying to create a resource for people who want to look at the readings from the weekly Revised Common Lectionary and integrate those readings into their experience of work and their reflections on the economic structures of the world. So come on down and check it out, too…I’d love to have you along for the ride.

But that, for now and on this blog, is all. If you want to check out some of my old sermons from previous years (and apparently some of you do) this will be the place to do it. But for new stuff – you have the links above.

My thanks to everyone who’s ever taken the time to comment, like, criticise, or follow this blog. You’ve made it more than worthwhile, and you will never know how grateful to you I am. So until we meet again – go well, and may God go with you and come between you and harm in all the places you must walk.

Blessings,

Brendan Byrne

Kintsukuroi: A Short Story

PRESCRIPT: This is a short story, the idea for which occurred to me – seemingly out of the blue – almost in its entirety earlier this week. In terms of total writing time, it only took a few hours spread over a couple of days.  For those unfamiliar with the title, “kintsukuroi” is the Japanese art of mending broken pots and bowls, based on the philosophy that they are all the more beautiful for having been broken.  

Kintsikuroi: a short story by Brendan Byrne. © Brendan Byrne 2017. All rights reserved.

He did not know where the idea came from, or when it first occurred to him. He just looked out the window one day and thought: that space needs a bonsai garden. Continue reading “Kintsukuroi: A Short Story”

A New Venture – Podcasting!

As many of you are aware, prior to my ordination as a Minister in the Uniting Church in Australia, I was involved in the trade union movement for about 20 years – as a workplace delegate, as an elected honorary official, and finally as a paid official.  I worked for both blue collar and white collar unions, negotiating on behalf of union members, undertaking research into industrial issues, and even representing the unions I worked for at industrial tribunals. Continue reading “A New Venture – Podcasting!”

Poems Based on Japanese Models

In recent times I have been experimenting with poems based on two particular Japanese models: the haiku (3 lines) and tanka (5 lines). Both are ancient forms of traditional poetry in Japanese culture; and although, when rendered in English, do possess certain differences from the Japanese originals, are nonetheless popular and compelling poetic forms.  I can’t speak for the results – but I do hope they are nonetheless of some merit. Enjoy! Continue reading “Poems Based on Japanese Models”

Theology of Work: A Reflection

PRESCRIPT: This year, I was generously invited to give the Keynote Address to the Uniting Church Vic/Tas Synod Justice and International Mission (JIM) Unit’s Annual Conference. The Conference theme was: “Making Working Lives Better: A Christian Perspective on the Future of Work”. What follows is an extended version of the text of my Address: “extended” in the sense that it contains additional material which I deleted from my delivered speech for timing reasons, but which I nonetheless think is relevant.

May the grace and peace of our Lord, Jesus Christ, be with you all.

A reading from the Gospel According to Luke:

Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight. When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, “Woman, you are set free from your ailment.” When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the Sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, “There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the Sabbath day.” But the Lord answered him and said, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the Sabbath day?” When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing. Continue reading “Theology of Work: A Reflection”