Mar 23 2017

Newsletter March 2017

Published by under Uncategorized

Sea of Faith – Dunedin

Exploring Meaning in Life

Newsletter MARCH 2017 and AGM details, 23 March 2017


We Start With…

A two minute period of silence – a moment of peace.

From the ‘Chair’

At our February meeting we discussed some of the most vexed issues of our time.  Robots, artificial intelligence, and other technologies are reducing the numbers of jobs for unskilled and semiskilled workers, and for professionals too (anything that can be learned about how you do the job by observation can be taken over by technology).  The implications of the rapidly reducing number of jobs (and thus income) lead to consideration of the possibility of a Universal Basic Income, and we explored the nature and benefits of a UBI to a community (just a little).

Religion in Schools

Marion Christie


Thursday, 23rd MARCH


St John’s Church Hall,

Cnr Wright Street

& Highgate

Tea and Coffee

will be available from 5.30pm

 The programme will start at 6.00pm

 Contribution – $5

Gretchen    (03) 473 0031

Next Meeting

Marion Christie will introduce a 24 minute video, a TED talk by Dan Dennett entitled ‘Let’s teach religion – all religion – in schools’, and then lead a discussion on the many points of interest raised by the video.  If you wish, you can watch the video beforehand, at


The problem with a lot of this new technology is the rate of change – Alvin Toffler called it “Future Shock”. I confess to having been able to keep up with most of it so far, although I don’t use the social media ‘FaceBook’ or ‘Twitter’ at all.

British comedian Peter Kay says his grandma calls it “FaceTube” and when the two of them went into MacDonald’s to get food she asked him to get her some “Wi-Fi” as they were free (Free “Wi-Fi”). His grandma gives him a lot of inspiration for his jokes (you can find him on YouTube and have a really good laugh).

I look forward to a driverless electric car as I get older. I like the thought of being able to get into the car and tell it to go to “Sea of Faith meeting” and then sit back until I get there. When all is over I will say “Home” and afterwards plug it in like an electric toothbrush. That may enable people to stay in their own home for longer (as I think many folk make the move to a retirement village shortly after the driving licence goes).

My new computer came with Windows 10. I was happy with Windows 7, and my old computer would link up to Bruce’s data projector – my new one has a fancy link called HDMI (that’s High Definition Multi-media Interface just in case you need to know). Anyhow, it won’t talk to Bruce’s projector so we must try to find a different one. I think the Freemasons can help.

Here is my point – we need to keep up to date with all the changes and developments. Not easy. That’s a good reason for U3A courses but also for helping each other. Sometimes a helping hand from someone just a bit more skilled than yourself is all that’s needed to help you take that next step and be able to use the new ‘phone, video, TV or whatever. Young ones seem to do things so easily – but when I was their age I stripped a car apart, gearbox, clutch, big end overhaul the lot. Many of today’s youngsters can’t do that. I know a lot of you make wonderful baking and cooking – I’m not much good at that and I’ll bet a lot of youngsters are not either. We all have skills to share – we are all still very good at something and when we get together and pool our skills, we can keep up with today’s world.

Feeding the 5000

I heard an interesting take on the story of the loaves and fishes. The speaker said that at the meeting Jesus took the food that he had and shared it around. That inspired all the others in the crowd to do the same (which they may well not have done without his inspiration and example) and there was food for all.

Helping each other, sharing what we have seems to me to be in that mold.

Luther and the Reformation

It is 500 years since Luther (the monk) made his stand against the Catholic Church. He objected to priests selling indulgences. He wanted people to be able to read the bible in their own language – German – so he made a translation from the Latin. Did he actually nail his 95 theses to the church door at Wittenberg? One programme I have listened to says that the story is apocryphal, however I’m looking forward to this series of lectures at our generous University to find out more.

I think it is high time we had another Reformation and sorted some of the awful things out – what would you put on the list if you were to write 95 theses? You don’t need to get as far as 95 – but maybe you’ll have more than that.

Pen and paper time now.


I spotted this in a Newsletter from Opoho Church which a good friend loaned me


They have no need of our help

So do not tell me

These haggard faces could belong to you or me

Should life have dealt a different hand

We need to see them for who they really are

Chancers and scroungers

Layabouts and loungers

With bombs up their sleeves

Cut-throats and thieves

They are not

Welcome here

We should make them

Go back to where they came from

They cannot

Share our food

Share our homes

Share our countries

Instead let us

Build a wall to keep them out

It is not okay to say

These are people just like us

A place should only belong to those who are born there

Do not be so stupid as to think that

The world can be looked at another way


Brian Bilston

Newsletter Editor:

Alan Jackson

55 Evans Street


Ph: 473 6947




AGM 23 March 2017

Hello Dunedin Sea of faith Friends

We shall hold our Annual General Meeting on our next meeting day – the Fourth Thursday of the month – 23rd March 2017 at 6pm in St John’s church hall.

The attached papers are in two formats (except the finance which is .pdf only).

The committee has offered to continue and we are delighted to have had a volunteer to swell the ranks. We are always in need of good people with good fresh ideas, so others will be welcome.

We are a very small group, and our business will not take long – so the main theme for the evening will be that of Religion in Schools – a TED video and discussion led by Marion Christie.

Gretchen asks me to stress that there are five Thursdays this month – we are on the FOURTH THURSDAY – 23rd March.



2016-03-24 AGM Minutes 2017 – AGM Finances 2017 AGM – Newsletter Report 2017 AGM Chair’s Report

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