Monday, March 30, 2009


It saddened me to watch Bailey Kurariki lash out at the media last week. And today he has been charged with assault. Sad? Isn't this guy a scum of the earth crim who should be behind bars forever? He's acting like it. The question is: is he acting like it, because he's being treated like it?

At the time of his release I wrote to 2 newspapers who were sensationalising aspects of his release on parole imploring them to stop the scrutiny and irresponsible reporting. Kurariki had by all accounts made some good progress in prison and was in good shape to give it a real go.

Kim Workman has been reported today on the issues:

Rethinking Crime and Punishment director Kim Workman said yesterday that the last two years of Kurariki's sentence in the Maori Focus Unit at Hawkes Bay Prison had given him a nurturing, supportive environment.

Mr Workman said Kurariki left prison "full of hope and with clear goals for the future", but the intense parole supervision he faced was undoing the good work.

"The lack of consistency between the prison and parole regimes was a recipe for failure."

Mr Workman said international research showed intensive parole supervision was more ineffective than boot camps and "scared straight" programmes.

Food for thought. Garth McVicar will be happy though - harass these guys enough and they will end up back in prison where they can rebuild their hope safe behind walls.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Community is not the Goal

So I had one of those "so what" moments this week reading Leadership Weekly. I used to like Leadership Weekly a lot and mostly I still do, but every so often they come up with these odd trying-to-be-sensationalist headlines or articles. Like when REVEAL was released by Willow Creek. Before you knew it, Willow Creek was repenting of everything they'd ever done!

Same goes with the latest interview with Jon Trott, Jesus People USA. Trott makes the salient but obvious point that the pursuit of community can become its own goal. The point is that when community becomes its own goal it stops being community and become something else - something inward focused. An inwardly focused community is oxymoronic - in fact so is an outwardly focused community, because if its not outwardly focused its not community.

So what leads Leadership Weekly to take this self-apparent truth and trumpet it as the headline as if this veteran of incarnational ministry is rejecting community? I don't know, but it sure annoyed me! Actually, I do know and it annoys me how so much money goes into media that is US-based and simply recycles the sectarian politics that hamstrings the body of Christ in that country.

The goal by the way is: transformed lives.

Friday, March 13, 2009


I saw an ad that was very effective today. It has this woman who is transported from her office setting to go "walkabout" - she moves from becoming "Kate Middleton, Executive VP of etc etc" to "Kate". All through this process of a holiday. It was nicely done. Happy to go to Australia if anyone wants to shout me there!

It's a great commentary though on what advertisers think will sell. Discover yourself. Get unbusy. Interesting messages to be sending.

A friend recently reported a comment to me from a high ranking person in the Baptist church to the effect that they have never known people within churches to be so time poor as they are right now. Another commentary on busyness.

So right now I am busy. In a fruitful kind of way. Mostly. One or 2 areas I have bitten off a bit more than I can chew. I don't mind being busy in pursuit of something good.

But I am very grateful for the Sabbath I keep on a Monday. I am very grateful for the season of lent and the way cessioncommunity is resourcing this journey. It makes a difference for me. I am enjoying the Lent musings of our secret lent blogger and seeing much of my journey mirrored there. I am grateful for the oases along the way.