Friday, May 28, 2010

'Diff'rent Strokes' star Gary Coleman died today.


Gary Coleman, child star of the smash 1970s TV sitcom "Diff'rent Strokes", died Friday after suffering a brain hemorrhage. He was 42.

If you were watching TV back in 1979 it is quite likely that you enjoyed watching him in the program "Diff'rent Strokes" playing the character Arnold Jackson and his catch phrase "Whatchu talkin' 'bout Willis?"

The program debuted on NBC in 1978 and drew most of its laughs from Gary, then a tiny 10-year-old with sparkling eyes and perfect comic timing. Todd Bridges played Coleman's older brother, Willis, on the comedy program. Gary played the younger of two African-American brothers adopted by a wealthy white man. Race and class relations became topics on the show as much as the typical trials of growing up.

He was born Feb. 8, 1968, in Zion, Ill., near Chicago. His mother, said he had always been a ham. He acted in some commercials before he was signed by the production company that created "Diff'rent Strokes."

His family said he was absolutely enchanting, adorable, funny and filled with joy which he spread around to millions of people all over the world."

(Lenny Ignelzi / Associated Press )

11-year-old Gary Coleman poses in a Padres baseball uniform during the making of a movie in San Diego on June 27, 1979.

He was plagued with health problems all of his life. His short stature added to his child-star charm but stemmed from a serious health problem, kidney failure. He got his first of at least two transplants at age 5 and required dialysis. Even as an adult, his height reached only 4 feet 8 inches.

His adult life was troubled with his inability to get new acting roles. His health was poor and he just never seemed to adjust to new situations, he felt that people were not willing to take him seriously once he became an adult. He had the reputation of remembering all of his lines and was said never to forget anything he learned.

I really like both of these photos of him because he looks happy and that is how I choose to remember him. He made so many people laugh at his antics and he still has many fans who hold fond memories of him. Consider me among them.

May he rest in peace.

peacesojourner

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Total # of U. S. Troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan - 5, 483



Stop $33 billion for Afghanistan war!

President Obama has already ordered 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan. Afghans and their neighboring countries must settle their conflict by negotiations. The U.S. can provide development aid but cannot dictate the outcome.

U.S. troops must come home so that the healing can begin.

Now, the Democratic leadership in Congress wants to pass a $33 billion war supplemental appropriation to pay for the escalated troop levels.

Tell Congress to vote NO on Afghanistan war funding even if unrelated funds are attached. These desperately needed funds for jobs, education, and health deserve to be adopted on their own merits -- but they can and must be passed separately.

The Senate is expected to vote on the war funding this week, possibly today. Call your Senator IMMEDIATELY at 202-224-3121 and give him or her three messages:

(1) Vote NO on funding for the Afghanistan war, even if other measures are attached to it.

(2) Vote YES on amendment 4204 to HR.4899 (the supplemental appropriation bill), submitted by Sens. Boxer, Durbin and Merkley, which in simplified language sets an exit timeline for withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan.

(3) Join the 'Out of Afghanistan Congressional Caucus' initiated by Rep. John Conyers.

*****

Total U. S. troops killed in Iraq 4,400

Total U.S. troops killed in Afghanistan - 1,083

Total Iraqi citizens killed 1,366,350

There are at least 18 veteran suicides daily

Please go back to the beginning of this message and read it again, slowly.

Could you have conceived of so many young men and women dying when these wars started? Make that call today and ask them not to vote for more money for war and to send the troops back home now.

peacesojourner



Monday, May 24, 2010

Wonderful Photos of Animals...............






















Some beautiful photos that were sent to me in an e-mail message.

I hope that you enjoy them. Sorry, I do not know the names of the photographers
so cannot give them credit.

peacesojourner

Friday, May 21, 2010

Have a Great Weekend!


The sun is shining, the birds are singing and the flowers are blooming!



Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Buffalo Welcomes President Obama - May 13, 2010


President Barack Obama visited Buffalo, NY this past week , on his
"White House to Main Street Tour" which started in December. He has visited Allentown, Pa., Charlotte, N.C., Savannah, Ga., and Quincy, Ill. He will travel to Youngstown, Ohio next.


For most of us it was our first glimpse of Air Force One and it is certainly impressive

His arrival was at 12:25 p.m. and departure at 3:20 p.m.
He would only be here for three hours and the entire community was abuzz about where he would appear and what he would do while he was here.
While at the airport the president met with the families of the victims of Flight 3407 - the plane that crashed in Buffalo last year. They appealed to him to support the stricter aviation regulation laws regarding the training of pilots and other suggestions for making air travel safer for all. The families later reported that he stated he will support them on this.


It rained the entire time that he was here but Buffalonians were not daunted by this.

Many stood in the rain for the entire visit, hoping to catch a glimpse of him as his vehicle passed them along the highways.


There were staunch supporters in the crowd - many holding 'thank you' signs



And others who wished to let President Obama know that they are against the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the new policies in Arizona which are viewed as singling out immigrants. The signs urged President Obama to support immigration reform.
(photos by Leslie Church - WBFO)

*****

While here the President met in private with the Families of Flight 3407. He was then whisked away to have a fast lunch at a local Buffalo wings restaurant where the locals were happily surprised when he arrived and were able to talk to him and wish him well.

His final stop was at a small local business, President Obama spoke with workers at Industrial Support, Inc., a manufacturing company.

The President has said he believes the success of small businesses will be vital to the nation's economic recovery. Last week, he sent Congress a proposal to create a $30 billion support program to unfreeze credit for small businesses.

President Obama said he has asked the Small Business Administration to become more proactive in helping small business owners, or those who want to start small businesses, get the training they need to be competitive.

Help for small businesses would be especially welcome in cities like Buffalo, where large corporations have downsized and manufacturing jobs have been shipped overseas. Western New York has suffered for a long time from a lack of job growth and population losses.

Buffalo's Industrial Support, Inc. added workers last fall after receiving a loan offered to small businesses through the President's $862 billion stimulus plan. That type of success, President Obama said, makes him "want to double-down and work harder."

Kudos to the police from Buffalo and surrounding counties who were assigned to road closures, crowd control and to protect the President while he was here in town.

President Obama was here for only three hours, which gave us a glimpse of his very busy schedule. Everyone that I heard talk about it was enthusiastic about the visit. Whether one agrees with everything he says or not - the President of the United States was given a very warm welcome during his brief stay in Buffalo, and for that I am very glad.

peacesojourner



Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunday Reflection - The Power of Prayer

“To make the right choices in life, you have to get in touch with your soul. To do this, you need to experience solitude, which most people are afraid of, because in the silence you hear the truth and know the solutions."

--Deepak Chopra


I really like this quote and I find it helpful as a reminder on how to go inward especially when we need to make important decisions. I also believe in the power of prayer.

The Bible has many things to say about the subject of prayer. Prayer is talking to God. It is our way of communicating our thoughts, needs, and desires to Him. It is an avenue that God has provided for the believer of making known the deepest feelings of our heart.


Asking God

The main idea behind prayer is petition, asking God for things. Jesus said:

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened’ (Matthew 7:7-8)


How Often Should We Pray

If possible, there should be set times each day that we pray. As the need arises, prayer should also take place in between these times. The Bible commands us to:

Pray continually ( 1 Thessalonians 5:17)


Pray Privately

Jesus said that our prayers should be done in private.

‘But when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly (Matthew 6:6).'

There is a time for public prayer but as individuals we should talk to God in private.


Continue In Prayer

We are also to continue in prayer. We do not just pray for something once and then go on.

Then they came to a place which was named Gethsemane; and He said to His disciples, ‘Sit here while I pray. . . And He went away and prayed and spoke the same words (Mark 14:32,39).'

In the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus prayed three times for the same thing. Hence it is not a lack of faith to continue to pray for something. Furthermore we are commanded to keep on praying for things.


Summary

Prayer is talking to God. It is a specific thing that we do, not merely an attitude. The main idea behind prayer is petition—asking God for things. From the Scripture we discover that prayer is an act that we are to perform between God and us. It should be done in private without calling attention to the fact that we are praying.


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Armed Forces Day - 61st Anniversary


This moving photograph shows Chief Master Sgt. John Gebhardt, superintendent of the 22nd Wing Medical Group at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas, holding an injured Iraqi girl.

You may have seen this photo before. It has been widely circulated. I chose to show it again today in honor of Armed Forces Day.

The picture was taken in October 2006, while Chief John Gebhardt was deployed at Balad Air Base in Iraq. According to the Air Force Print News, the infant girl held in his arms “received extensive gunshot injuries to her head when insurgents attacked her family killing both of her parents and her siblings.”
The nurses said John is the only one who seems to calm her down, so he spent the last four nights holding her while they both slept in that chair.

John is now back home in Wichita, Kansas, with his wife and two children.
An Air Force Link article about the fame he gained as the subject of this photograph reported that Chief
Gebhardt said “I got as much enjoyment out of it as the baby did, I reflected on my own family and life and thought about how lucky I have been.”

While deployed to Iraq, the chief tried to help out any way he could. He figured holding a baby, that needed comforting would free up one more set of arms that could be providing care to more critical patients. “I pray for the best for the Iraqi children,” he said. “I can’t tell the difference between their kids and our kids. The Iraqi parents have the same care and compassion for their children as any American.”

*****

I have family and friends who are serving or have retired from the Armed Forces. All of them, without exception, are decent human beings. To me this photo captures the average person who is serving their country.

*****

On August 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy and Air Force Days.

In an excerpt from the Presidential Proclamation of Feb. 27, 1950, Mr. Truman had stated:
The theme of the first Armed Forces Day was “Teamed for Defense.” It was designed to expand public understanding of what type of job is performed and the role of the military in civilian life and it was a day to honor and acknowledge the people of the Armed Forces of the United States.

According to a New York Times article published on May 17, 1952: “This is the day on which we have the welcome opportunity to pay special tribute to the men and women of the Armed Forces ... to all the individuals who are in the service of their country all over the world. Armed Forces Day won’t be a matter of parades and receptions for a good many of them. They will all be in line of duty and some of them may give their lives in that duty.

Armed Forces Day is celebrated annually on the third Saturday of May.

*****
To date 5,464 US Military personnel have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan
and thousands have been wounded.

I continue to dream of a day when the military personnel will only be assigned as disaster relief workers and to keep the peace without killing. Much like the National Guard and the United Nations Peace keepers.

Until that time please remember them and their families on this official day of recognition of the United States Armed Forces

peacesojourner

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

ANIMALS - come in pairs


Some beautiful photos that I came across - enjoy!

Two of a kind

A pair of chameleons fight inside a park in the western Indian city of Ahmedabad.


Kai Pfaffenbach / Reuters

Neck and neck

Two giraffes lean against each other at the Botlierskop Game Reserve in Mossel Bay, South Africa



Just Horsing Around

Two horses fight on the grassland near Chifeng, a city in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.


Winfried Rothermel / AP

Entwined lives

Storks huddle in their nest in Holzen, southern Germany.


Sanjeev Gupta / EPA

A king cobra couple "kiss" at the Van Vihar National Park near Bhopal, India.



Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Total # of U.S Troops Killed in Iraq and Afghanistan Wars – 5,464

Army Sending Precision Grenade Launcher to Afghanistan

ABERDEEN TEST CENTER, Md. — The Army is set to send its high-tech “counter defilade” weapon to the war zone in the next few months, the first real-world deployment for the much-anticipated XM-25 Individual Airburst Weapon.

Officials announced May 5 that a group of Army Special Forces Soldiers will take the weapon with them to Afghanistan sometime this summer.

Afghanistan veterans who fired the weapon for the first time this week predicted it would be a “game changing” weapon, a gun that can engage Taliban insurgents using distant ridge-tops, thick mud walls and tree lines as cover.

While labeled a grenade launcher, the XM-25 is much more than that, Army officials say. It’s a precision direct, and indirect, fire weapon system that combines an array of sophisticated sensors, lasers and optics with a microchip-embedded 25mm high explosive round.

The enormous firepower advantage is obvious, they can drop the 25mm rounds directly into an enemy’s lap from up to 700 meters away. That precision firepower will come at a high price: It’s projected to run $25,000 per weapon.

The Army plans to spend $34 million on further development in 2011 with a production start slated for 2012, according to service budget documents. The service had planned to buy 12,500 XM-25s, but a final decision is awaiting a program review by senior Army officials.

Source Military.com

US Military Deaths in Iraq - 4,397

Afghanistan - 1,067

Total - 5,464

Iraqi and Afhanistan civilians more than one million deaths.

Do you want more than 30% of your tax dollars going towards the cost of war?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu..................

Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu

I recently had the opportunity to see and hear Archbishop Desmond Tutu who was visiting the American International College in Springfield, Massachusetts.



I had very fond memories of meeting him in London and I was delighted to see him again.

For me, it is difficult to think of Bishop Tutu without being reminded of Nelson Mandela. Their lives have been intertwined for many years. When Mandela was imprisoned for twenty-seven years Bishop Tutu never stopped his personal crusade to free Mandela and end apartheid in South Africa.

In London, during the 1980’s thousands of people marched against the Apartheid regime of South Africa and demanded the immediate release of Nelson Mandela who had been imprisoned since 1964. The African National Congress (ANC) and the Anti-Apartheid Movement organized the demonstrations. We would regularly gather in Trafalgar Square and camp out overnight on the steps of the South Africa Embassy.

In the late ‘80’s I had the opportunity to meet Bishop Tutu at a gathering in Hyde Park. My friend, Beverly, invited me to attend an ‘invitation only’ tea where we spent the afternoon with Bishop Tutu, his wife, and other visiting dignitaries. The first thing that one notices about him is the pleasant smile that seldom leaves his face. He made several jokes but when it was time to be serious his words were exact and to the point.

He had received the Nobel Peace Prize, in 1984, in recognition of "the courage and heroism shown by black South Africans in their use of peaceful methods in the struggle against apartheid.”

At that time the chairman of the Nobel Committee said, "Some time ago television enabled us to see this year's laureate in a suburb of Johannesburg. A massacre of the black population had just taken place - the camera showed ruined houses, mutilated human beings and crushed children's toys. Innocent people had been murdered. Women and children mortally wounded. But, after the police vehicles had driven away with their prisoners, Desmond Tutu stood and spoke to a frightened and bitter congregation: 'Do not hate', he said, 'let us choose the peaceful way to freedom'.”

And here we were in London in 1988, still demonstrating, demanding the release of Nelson Mandela who had been sentenced to life imprisonment in 1964 and sent to notorious Robben Island Prison, a former leper colony off the coast from Cape Town.

As I write about Archbishop Desmond Tutu I am finding it very difficult to condense the many acts of personal peace and reconciliation that have molded his lifestyle.

Bishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu, now 78, was born in 1931 in Klerksdorp, Transvaal. Where he first trained as a teacher but at 26 he became dissatisfied with the teaching profession and decided to become a priest. He later claimed he was not motivated by high ideals. "It just occurred to me that, if the Church would have me, the profession of priest could be a good way of serving my people."

In 1986 he was elected the first black archbishop of Cape Town, becoming the head of the Anglican Church in South Africa and leader of South Africa's 1.6 million Anglicans. While serving in this position he intensified his criticism of the apartheid system which he described as "evil and unchristian" and called for "a democratic and just society without racial divisions" where there are equal civil rights for all. He advocated the use of nonviolent resistance by black South Africans and encouraged the world community to apply economic sanctions against the regime. The apartheid government responded by cancelling his passport.


After many years of speaking out, Nelson Mandela was finally released from prison on Sunday 11 February 1990.

In 1994 a national election was held and the ANC won the country's first all-race elections. Over four days beginning on 26 April more than 22 million South Africans, or about 91% of registered voters, went to the polls. On 9 May the National Assembly unanimously elected Nelson Mandela president. He stressed the need for reconciliation and reaffirmed his determination to create a peaceful, nonracial society.

President Mandela signed a law creating the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate human rights violations committed from March 1960 to May 1994. The commission was chaired by Archbishop Desmond Tutu who stated "I hope that the work of the commission, by opening wounds to cleanse them, will thereby stop them from festering," The public hearings started in April 1996, and completed most of its fact-finding work by late July 1998 after hearing more than 20,000 testimonials and 4,000 requests for amnesty.

Bishop Tutu continues to speak out against conditions in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Burma, Zimbabwe regarding inhumane treatment in those and other countries.

In 2007 he is presented with the International Gandhi Peace Prize that is awarded by the Government of India, and is considered to be India's highest international honor.

One of the enduring memories of the struggle to end apartheid is Bishop Tutu's high-pitched yet melodious voice admonishing the regime and the world to end the discrimination. .

And here he is in 2010 in Massachusetts with the same melodious voice still mentioning the many crimes against humanity in the world. Just as we were wondering where is he going with this critique he pulls it all together and points out that there is still good in the world as he talks about the important humanitarian programs that the college takes part in.

He remains a humble man with an infectious laugh who seems unable to rest until the world is at peace. I believe that is why he continues to have so much energy and as Nelson Mandela has said, "Sometimes strident, often tender, never afraid and seldom without humor, Desmond Tutu's voice will always be the voice of the voiceless."

I urge you to go to http://www.moreorless.au.com/heroes/tutu.html to read more about South Africa and Bishop Tutu’s historical role in his beloved country.

Once again, I feel so fortunate to have been in his presence. I will never forget it.

peacesojourner


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Jane Goodall in Buffalo.................





One of the benefits of living in Buffalo is that there are so many colleges in this area, and several offer free lectures to the public. I attend as many as I can and I was thrilled to learn that Jane Goodall was coming to Canisius College.

I have always been in awe of Jane’s lifestyle and personal journey in life. When I was very young I was filled with admiration of her life in Africa, and her study of chimpanzees, and how she soon became their leading crusader. Her research work expanded to include numerous conservation efforts in Africa and worldwide.

Jane was born very near to my place of birth in London. Stories of her work in Tanzania came to us via Geographical magazines and in later years from the British Broadcasting Company. (BBC) She has lived for many years on the southern coast of England in Bournemouth, a town where several members of my family now live.

I had always felt some sort of kinship with Jane even though our paths had never actually crossed – and now here she was – coming to Buffalo to talk about her travels and work in Africa.

I hurried along to the college and did not realize that so many people would also be there waiting to hear her speak. We queued in line for an hour and a half and many people were turned away. The wait was worth it for the more than 3,000 people who did get to hear her. Her audience ranged from kindergarteners to very elderly senior citizens.

She has a soft voice, and the crowd listened in total silence as she gently recalled her personal story of travelling to East Africa as a young woman. As I listened to her I realized that she is 76 years of age - she looks much younger – maybe the many years in isolation with only primates to interact with had reduced the stress from her life.

In the summer of 1960, 26-year-old Jane Goodall arrived on the shore of Lake Tanganyika in East Africa to study the area's chimpanzee population. Although it was unheard of for a woman to venture into the wilds of the African forest, the trip meant the fulfillment of her childhood dream and her work in Tanzania would prove more successful than anyone had imagined. At first, the Gombe chimps fled whenever they saw Jane. But she persisted, watching from a distance with binoculars, and gradually the chimps allowed her closer.

She stated that she gives talks for 300 days every year. This means that she travels in many different countries to spread her message and she encourages the advancement of individuals to take informed and compassionate action to improve the environment for all living things.

She is a Wildlife Researcher, Educator, and Conservationist. Her research work has expanded to include numerous conservation efforts in Africa and worldwide. Her global nonprofit Institute empowers people to make a difference for all living things, by creating healthy ecosystems, promoting sustainable livelihoods and nurturing new generations of committed, active citizens.

In 1965, Jane earned her Ph.D in Ethology from Cambridge University. Soon thereafter, she returned to Tanzania to continue research and to establish the Gombe Stream Research Centre.

Today, the Jane Goodall Institute (founded in 1977) is a leader in the effort to protect chimpanzees and their habitats and is widely recognized for establishing innovative community-centered conservation and development programs in Africa and the Roots & Shoots education program in nearly 100 countries.

Jane Goodall spends much of her time lecturing, sharing her message of hope for the future and encouraging young people to make a difference in their world.

I encourage you to read one of the many books that she has written and check out the following sites: www.janegoodall.org and www.rootsandshoots.org

At the end of her lecture she opened the floor to questions and did not hesitate to answer all of them.

A wonderful evening in the presence of an outstanding person.

Tomorrow I will tell you about the third person that I was so fortunate to see and hear.

peacesojourner


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Michael McDonald in Concert.............


Recently I was able to see and hear three people who I have been a fan of for many years and all within a one-week period. They are from completely different walks of life but I admire them all.

If you have read my list of favorite musicians you will know that Michael McDonald is listed there. I have been a fan for many years. Those who have been a passenger in my car know that I play his music all the time.

He plays the guitar, piano and the keyboard and I saw him in concert in Niagara Falls. He is a songwriter and a singer, and was born on 12th February 1952 . He is known for pop, rock, and soul. I love his Motown numbers the best.

While playing for a group “Steely Dan,” Michael McDonald received attention, as he was the back-up vocalist for the album “Katy Lied”. Later he was taken up by another group the “Doobie Brothers”. The original main singer of the “Doobie Brothers” was unwell during a tour and they signed Michael up. He was really impressive while performing in the band that they decided to give him a permanent place in the group.

Later he went solo and put together some of the previous songs that were not produced on CDs. He is the co writer of the song, ‘I’ll Wait.’ His album in 1990 was known as, “Take it to Heart”.

One thing that really surprised me was that so many men model themselves after him and there were many 'Michael McDonald' look alikes in the audience. Men with white hair with the hairstyle, beard and mustache styled just the same way. I had seen something similar when I was in Key West, Florida where they had an Ernest Hemingway look alike contest, but Michael McDonald lookalikes – who knew?

It was a great evening – he sang without a break for 90 minutes and then came back for an encore. He sang some of Ray Charles and Aretha Franklin’ best hits. He has a great group that travel with him and he announced that most of them had been playing together for more than thirty years.

The audience was singing along with the group and we all had an enjoyable time.

Tomorrow I will tell you who else I was lucky enough to see that week.

peacesojourner



Monday, May 3, 2010

Happy News - The Wedding Dress

JACKSON, Miss. – Days after a tornado obliterated their home and delayed their wedding, a Mississippi bride and groom say they feel blessed by the kindness of strangers, including the gift of a wedding dress from a jilted bride in Kentucky.

"I think it's great, because I never really expected this much help," Morgan Hayden said Wednesday from a hotel in her hometown of Yazoo City.

Hayden, 27, and her 31-year-old fiancĂ©, Josiah Moton, huddled in their bathroom with three relatives recently when a tornado blew apart the house the couple had helped build a few months ago in a wooded area just outside town. The storm left them homeless — but uninjured.

Left with few belongings beyond the clothes they were wearing, Hayden and Moton delayed their plans to go to Little Rock, Ark., on Monday for a small, informal wedding. Hayden said she had not purchased a wedding dress but was planning to wear something from her closet.

Katie Smith, 20, who lives near Louisville, Ky., said she read about the couple in an AP article and decided to find Hayden and offer her the dress. Smith said she had planned to marry this summer, but her fiancé from England broke their engagement last month.

"Honestly, it still hurts, Smith told the AP Wednesday. "But life goes on."

Smith said she has been trying to give away the wedding items she'd already purchased, including the dress she bought on sale for $350. Hayden accepted the offer, and Smith said she mailed the dress Tuesday. "I know every girl wants to look pretty on her wedding day," Smith said.

An executive at a resort in the Bahamas also said that he had read the AP article and the resort offered the couple a honeymoon when they're ready for it. They will provide two round-trip air tickets and five nights with an ocean-view room "as kind of a way to make some new memories and help them get past what happened."



The National Weather Service said the tornado was 1.75 miles wide — a record for Mississippi. It killed 10 people, injured at least 49 and damaged about 700 homes as it plowed nearly 150 miles through state.


Hundreds of tornado survivors in Mississippi are getting help from strangers. Charities are providing meals and bottled water. Church groups, civic groups and random people from in state and out of state are in the storm-damaged areas to cut fallen trees and clear debris.

Hayden said a homeowners' insurance policy is paying hotel expenses for a week, and she and Moton hope to move into an apartment. She said they will reschedule the wedding when life becomes somewhat normal again.

Excerpts taken from an article by EMILY WAGSTER PETTUS,

Associated Press Writer – Thu Apr 29

*****

We read so many stories in the news that tell of horrors and inhumanity from around the world. It is nice to have reaffirmation that there are so many people who are genuinely kind and giving who reach out to others in distress. This is a happy news story :-)

peacesojourner


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sunday Reflection - Life is as Fleeting as a Rainbow


Life is as fleeting as a rainbow,


A star at dawn,


A flash of lightning.

Knowing this, how can you quarrel?” 
–Buddha

Photos from Astrology Today

*****


Romans 12:18 - Do everything possible on your part to live in peace with everybody



Saturday, May 1, 2010

Total # of U.S Troops Killed in Iraq and Afghanistan Wars – 5,444


War is a racket.

It always has been.

It is possibly the oldest , easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious.

It is the only one international in scope.

It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what is seems to the majority of people.

Only a small “inside” group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many.

Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

Written by - Major General Smedley D. Butler, 1935

U.S. Marine Corps

Two-time winner Congressional Medal of Honor

*****

U.S. military deaths in Iraq since the war began (3/19/03) – 4,394

Wounded over 1,000,000

320,000 Vets have brain injuries

There are 18 Vet Suicides per day.

Iraqi deaths over one million

US Deaths in Afghanistan 1,050

Total US military deaths – 5,444

*****

Are you concerned about the number of people who have died?

If you are - have you contacted your president, senators, or congressperson to

let them know that you are against the war?

What are you waiting for? - do it today!

peacesojourner