Gutted Parliament’s prayer not leading John Key into temptation

This morning the Dominion Post reported under the headline”Gutted prayer not leading Key into temptation“… “[The] National [Party] opposes stripping religious references from Parliament’s prayer, with Prime Minister John Key saying it should stick with the status quo. Speaker David Carter has signalled the prayer  could be “less religious” and remove mention of Jesus Christ. But Key said: “I’m not a deeply religious person, I hardly ever go to church unless there’s a particular reason, but I think my preference would be to just leave it as it was.”

Source: The Dominion Post: December 9, 2014.

Pope: Kids have a right to both mums and dads

A month after convening a major meeting meant to welcome non-traditional families, Pope Francis told a gathering of global religious conservatives on Monday (local time) that “children have a right to grow up in a family with a father and a mother”.

The NZ parliamentary prayer should remain unchanged

Wellington Christian businessman, Mr Tim Lough, argued in his published feature article “Still a Christian state” (Dominion Post 30/11/04, B5), that the parliamentary prayer should remain unchanged. He was responding to a viewpoint expressed by Stephen Levine, Political science professor at Victoria University (DP, 12/11/04), that the prayer should be scrapped. More recently there have been calls for the Speaker of the House to of Representatives, the Hon. David Carter, to seek the opinion of all MPs on a newly proposed prayer, and to issue a ruling.


The existing prayer is:

Almighty God,

Humbly acknowledging our need for Thy guidance in all things, and laying aside all private and personal interests, we beseech Thee to grant that we may conduct the affairs of this House and of our country to the glory of Thy holy name, the maintenance of true religion and justice, the honour of the Queen, and the public welfare, peace, and tranquillity of New Zealand, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Tim Lough wrote: [Read more…]

Don’t curtain precious time

She had been a nurse when young and knew of sickness, of dying and of death. So when informed of her own terminal disease, she knew what lay ahead.

Far from wilting before the inevitable, she spent her four remaining months living as normally as time allowed, and graciously farewelling friends and family. In many ways, as her children gathered, the days were even happy because love permeated every event.

Was their pain? Nausea? Yes, for a while – but only until the appropriate medication was determined. After that, with pain relieved and with dedicated nursing, she was free to accept her gradual decline.

Inevitably, there came a morning when death could no longer be postponed, and she died as naturally as she was born, 70 years before. She was my wife.

I cannot imagine her ever wanting that precious time curtailed. Or her understanding those who do.

Dominion Post Letter to the Editor. Thursday 13 November 2014

J Barry, Christchurch

Legalising euthanasia would be devastating – Dom. Post Letter to Editor

OPINION (Letter to Editor)

It is extremely naive to imagine that the legislation of euthanasia would affect only the very few, high-profile cases which so readily gain the public’s attention and sympathy (Ensuring the right to die, November 8).

Any such move would have profound and long-lasting effects.

Firstly, it would turn on its head the role of doctors and nurses. Poisons in deliberately lethal doses would be stored in hospital dispensaries. Practitioners who refuse to take part would be on the outer, accused of flouting the law and the rights of their patients.

Secondly, the true victims of such a change would be the elderly and disabled. Faced with the cost of their treatment, many vulnerable patients would bow to pressure from family members who would welcome the opportunity of being freed from the practical and financial burden of caring for them.

Anyone sceptical of this happening should check out the current rate of elder abuse in the country.

Thirdly, legalising the right to assisted dying would severely impact the already difficult work of suicide prevention.

Among the many downhill benchmarks of the notorious “slippery slope” initiated by such legislation, this is likely to be the first and the most devastating.

Dominion Post Letters to the Editor, Thursday, September 13, 2014.

Letter by D Penk, Auckland