Wednesday, December 29, 2010

an interesting article sent by a publisher friend of mine


This very interesting article was sent to me by a publisher friend of mine.  It is a little out of date right now as the event has past, but still worth the read.


This is a wonderful letter by an Arab Catholic priest to the 'Qur'an burning and Muslim hater' Pastor Jones of the USA.

A super response from an Arab Catholic Priest......

Monday, August 30, 2010

A message from an Arab Catholic priest to Pastor Jones who wants to burn the Quran

Translated from Arabic.

A message from Father Elias Zahlawi (a Syrian Catholic priest) to Pastor Terry Jones (who is calling for the burning of the Quran).

Respected Pastor Terry Jones,

I have read your worldwide call for the burning of the Quran on this coming 11th of September. Your message stated that you are a pastor of one of the churches in Florida in the United States of America.

As an Arab Catholic priest from Damascus (Syria), I wondered what would be your objective, as an American pastor, for such a call?

I wondered, and I ask you: What are your responsibilities as a pastor?

Are you really a Christian pastor serving God in a church in America?

Or are you merely a layperson from America who is pretending to be in the service of Christ?

Did you give in to your nationalism (Americanism) rather than giving in to your Christianity?

What is your aim with that call?

(Do you wish) to further fuel hatred among people? Is that consistent with (the teachings of) Jesus, whom you represent in your eyes and the eyes of many others?

Tell me, is there in the character of Jesus, in his words or in his actions anything that would remotely justify even a hint of promoting disdain and hatred among people?

Have you forgotten that Jesus was completely for love, forgiveness and peace? Have you forgotten what he taught us when he told his disciples and the people after them to tell God the heavenly Father of all to “forgive us our sins as we forgive those who wrong us”? You overlooked or forgot that when Jesus was hanging on the cross and being subjected to insults and vile words, he raised his voice, saying, “O Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

Who, then, do you represent or who are you trying to guide with this call of yours?

Isn’t it enough what has been happening since September 11, 2001: the killing, destruction, displacement and starvation of hundreds of millions of people throughout the world, from Palestine – the land of Jesus – by your leaders in particular, headed by George Bush, who was claiming direct communication with God?

Wouldn’t you agree with me that with your call (to burn the Quran), you have demonstrated that you are really unfamiliar with Jesus and that you desperately need to re-discover him again to be a true Christian pastor who calls, like Jesus, for the comprehensive love and full respect for every human being and a commitment to the full and wonderful teachings that call upon all believers, without exception, to always stand beside the poor, the oppressed and the disadvantaged?

My brother Pastor Terry Jones. Can you tell me, honestly, if Jesus came today, whose side would he take?

Is it the side of the powerful and arrogant oppressors who dominate the world and endlessly plunder its resources, violate its laws and international treaties, and kill people in their countries and destroy houses on top of their owners and turn them into refugees across the earth? Or is it the side of those who are oppressed, the disadvantaged, hungry, and homeless?

Did you forget what Jesus himself would say on the Day of Judgment to each person in front of him: “All that you did to one of my brothers, you actually did to me”?

I wonder if you have overlooked or forgotten that Jesus did not point in that speech on the Day of Judgment to the religion of any of those mistreated persons. He only referred to everyone as belonging to the human race and to his standing with the deprived, the weak, and the oppressed in this world.

So how could you as an American Christian pastor stand with the oppressors from your country whose injustice has spread around the world?

Aren’t you afraid of when you appear before Jesus on Judgment Day and you are burdened with a heavy conscience, like your leaders who are blinded by the gods of power, money, control and greed?

My brother Pastor Terry. Do you think I am being unfair if I conclude that your hatred toward Islam is what drove you to such a reprehensible call for the burning of Islam's holy book, the Quran?

But let me ask you, as a Syrian Roman Catholic priest: What do you know about Islam? It appears to me from your call to burn the Quran that you are ignorant of Christ and Christianity, and that makes me believe that you are also ignorant of Islam and Muslims.

Believe me, it is not my intention to indict you and it is not my intention to engage with you in a religious debate about Christianity or Islam. However, after I prayed for a long time, let me suggest for both of us to make a joint effort on this coming September 11.

You might ask me what effort can we do jointly when you are in Florida and I'm in Damascus?

He is my suggestion.

I invite you to visit Syria, where you will be my guest and the guest of many of my Muslim and Christian friends. Syria is a country populated mostly by Muslims and in which Christians are indigenous to the land and have lived side-by-side with Muslims for centuries and centuries.

Come and don’t worry about anything.

Come and you will find out about Islam and Muslims what will comfort you, please you, surprise you, and even lead you, from where you are today in Florida, to invite all people to live in respect, love and cooperation among all people.

This is what people need rather than the un-Christian call to fuel the sentiment of hatred and division.

Come to Syria and you will be amazed by the good nature of people and their faith, their relations, friendly cooperation and openness toward all strangers.

Come to Damascus to witness and live an experience that is not in your mind nor the mind or expectation of all the churches of the West or their bishops, pastors, and clergymen.

Come to see and hear two choruses, Christian and Muslim, singing together during Christian and Islamic holidays to praise Allah, the One God, who created us all, and to whom we all return.

My brother Pastor Terry.

I call you my brother and I am serious about calling you brother and about my invitation to you. I await a word (of reply) from you. Trust me that you will find a brother in Damascus, actually many brothers.

Please contact me and don’t delay. I am waiting for you in Damascus.

I ask God to make our anticipated meeting the beginning of a long and interesting path that we undertake together with other brothers in Damascus and around the world.

How desperate is the need of our world for bright roads.

Come, the road to Damascus is waiting for you.

Father Elias Zahlawi

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Monday and other wonderful news 2010

Wally picked me up and brought me to Oakville where Carmen and her Mother, Carmen were waiting for us.

It was a lovely time we spent together and I took lots of pictures.  Carmen (Mother) is visiting from Mexico for one month, and Carmen (daughter) is on holidays so she can spend time with her Mother.

 Their Christmas tree sitting in the sitting room.
The two Carmens

It was such a pleasant afternoon we spent together, and Carmen's meal was delicious! Her table was so colourful with its red tablecloth and colourful plates.  Just looking at it, lifts the spirits high!
The Host with the Mostest - Waldemar

The two little lovebirds with Mama looking on!

Herbal tea anyone?  Adoreable elephant teapot and sugar container.
I have such  love for this little family and enjoy spending time with them. The hours just flew by and the conversation never flagged which was amazing. 

One of the several entertainers.  The squirrels come on their balcony where they usually find peanuts waiting for them.  It was such great fun watching them jump from the fir trees to the railing and back again.  My cats would have loved to have been there and joined in the fun!
Lucky for the squirrels, they were safely tucked up in my apartment in Hamilton!

My new pussy cat sockettes for Christmas - nice and cozy and warm

It would not be right not to have a picture of my cat Boots which I snapped the night before burrowing into my bed.

The king of the castle - Boots at home

All in all, a fantastic and fun afternoon and early evening.  Wally brought me back from Oakville. 

On another note, this morning I got the news that my short story, "The Gift" won first prize in the Christmas contest held by Perspectives Magazine.  Perspectives Magazine is both on line as well as a hard copy. 

It's editor is Monique Berry who published two magazine.

Thanks for reading my blog and come back again when you can.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Rosel's for dinner on Christmas Sunday 2010

What a delightful time Hermie and I had at our friend Rosel's place.  As usual, Rosie had a lovely meal, roladen, red cabbage, asparagus and mashed potatoes. 

I love her rot kohl (red cabbage) - really delicious and the roladen was done to perfection.

Our hostess with the mostest getting ready to serve the food

Hermie (left)  Rosel (right)

Rosel (Rosie) and Hermie - friends for years in Canada

Wilma and Hermie with Rosel's beautiful live Christmas tree

Hermie is originally from Austria but has lived here many, many years as had Rosel.

Rosie drove us both home which was very kind of her as the Mountain buses are slow on Sunday and run only every half hour.

All in all, a delightful afternoon!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Day 2010

I had a lovely time.  It was nice not to have to rush around, took my time cooking the lamb and roast potatoes, and warmed up the homemade bread and made my famous punch and served one of my favourite cakes that I make.

My son came for lunch and we had a delightful time - it could not have been nicer. 

Now I am just cleaning up the dishes and will relax the rest of the day and listen to the music on the radio.

The table set for company

The cake decorated for Christmas

My son Ken

A beautiful meal of lamb

Me, taken by my son.

The king of the castle - Boots
I do love having company and I am glad that my son came for lunch.  He had another invitation in Toronto to go to after that.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Spreading the Christmas spirit in Pakistan

Spreading the Christmas spirit in Pakistan        Please click on this linc to see the video.

A friend of mine, originally from India, sent me this video.  I found it very interesting.  There are many Christians in the Middle East, especially in Egypt and Lebanon, and also in India and Pakistan.  In fact, I know an Indian lady who went to school in a convent in India.

She now lives in Toronto and there is a large Christian community from her area of India in Toronto.

Please take a look and see the different customs in other countries where Christmas is celebrated.

Have a wonderful Christmas Day.

Christmas Eve 2010

How nice that the weather is not stormy here, that there is not two feet of snow hampering people as they go about their last minute shopping, rushing here and there, seeking and hopefully finding what they want.

How grateful I am that I do not have to be in the stores today as do the store clerks who have to deal with grumpy people, folks who have no idea what to buy their loved ones and whose sore feet and legs must be aching at the close of the shopping day. 

I have never understand last minute shoppers, Christmas is celebrated each 25th of December for all the years that I have lived on this planet!  I do my shopping all year around and stash them away so searching eyes do not find the hidden treasures.

I may go to the mall this afternoon and just sit and watch frantic people searching for last minute gifts.  It is a study in human nature just doing that.

On a more serious note, this season brings out the credit cards, the debit cards and cash and many people put themselves in bad financial situations just to give huge presents.

In my view, this is not the true spirit of Christmas but rather is falling for the trap set by commerical firms to get people to overspend.

It is far from the real meaning of Christmas.

Instead of expensive gifts, why not donate to a food bank, give to a mission who provides meals for the homeless all year around and put your hard earned money to good use which will bless others and yourself.

Thanks for reading my blog.  Have a blessed Christmas!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

My newest creation

Elegant and easy to slip on

Czech Firepolish beads in jet black and crystal with dangle.

20" necklace, with 1 3/4 inch approx. dangle

My plan is to make matching earrings as well and will post them on here when they are done.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A great visit with my pal Asma

What a wonderful day it has been today!  My very close friend Asma visited me from Toronto for the day.

We have been very good friends since 1994 or 1995 and her family is my family so to speak.

It only took her 45 minutes to get here which was very good timing with hardly any traffic.

School is finished now for the Christmas holidays so she is free for a week or so.  No more teaching for a while which will give her a nice rest and time to spend with her grown up children and her grandchildren.

Asma at the table for a vegetarian meal

My dear friend Asma enjoying rice pudding
After lunch, which was chick pea loaf, noodles with breadcrumbs and peas and homemade bread, we were so stuffed that we went over to the mall to do a little shopping.

Asma and I had a good time there and then came home for our rice pudding and whipped cream desert and regular tea.   

I will be going to stay with her a few days in the summer months and she will come to Hamilton to pick me up.  Last time that happened we interviewed a wonderful professor who came to interview Asma, but I ended up doing an interview about her and her work and writing it up for the paper.  A poem even came out of this meeting.  It is called a Lick and a Promise and was published.  It happened because both of us were spiffing up Asma's home before the professor came and out of that, came the poem.

That dear professor drove me back to Hamilton which was such a kind thing to do.  She was visiting her daughter.

Here is the poem which came out of that occasion.  Hope you enjoy it.

A Lick and a Promise

Finger prints on bathroom mirror

Water marks on tiled floor

The hiss of Windex on paper towel

A wipe, a swipe – and all is right.

The old wet mop dragged from hiding

To perform its mighty job

The smell of pine now scents the air

A rub, a scrub – the task is done

Feather duster at the ready

Dust bunnies skulk and hide

Taunting me to catch them

A whoosh, a swoosh – chores are done.

© 2007WilmaSeville

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Lit Chat Dec. 2010

Adam Getty was the host tonight as Jennifer was away in Morocco.   It was a very compatible group tonight with three new faces.  I hope they will come again.

This December event is strictly for writers to read their work without any critiquing and people just need to listen.  It was very relaxing.  Jean read from her book, I read my Snowflake story which was published in Perspectives Magazine, David read from his book and one new young fellow Andrew read some of his poems. 

A very pleasant evening.  I was able to deliver Jean's necklace to her this evening and she was delighted with it and put it on right away.  It looks really nice.

David and Renessa drove me home which was very nice of them.

It was worth going out in the bitter cold.

E.L.W. Christmas celebration 2010

In spite of the extremely cold weather and the biting wind, the ladies managed to get to the church hall.    It is one of the most lovely E.L.W. celebrations and one not to be missed.

This group is a very loving group, caring for one another and for shut-ins.  Cards are sent, visits are done by members both to hospitals and nursing homes, people call each other, and in general minister to each other in loving kindness.  

The congregation is mostly German speaking, but the younger generations speak English so services are held in both German and English.

Today was a lovely programme with scripture readings, seasonal poetry, prayer and many people participated to make this event happen.

A special presentation was made to Pastor Frank and Pastor Astrid, to Herbert who helps the women's group so much and to Carol-Anne, the church secretary.

To finish off this wonderful event, an array of sandwiches and sweets, fruits, coffee, tea and herbal tea was served, buffet style.

The buffet table so lovingly prepared by the women

The manager scene in the church basement

The downstairs smaller Christmas tree, wooden ornaments

Happy voices rose in song praising God and singing familiar carols in both languages.  Joy was present in the singing, the fellowship of the ladies, the caring shown to each other and the concern for others, as evidenced in the ladies making sandwiches tomorrow for MacSoc which is a ministry for street people.  Two hundred people are expected to come for sandwiches,goodies  and a Christmas celebration.  A collection was also taken up for the Childrens Breakfast Programme which is run thoroughout Hamilton.  Over $300 was raised for this programme alone.

Our President, Kathe welcoming everybody including the little fellow with his grandmother

A snapshot of some of the group

English tea cups donated by people

.  It certainly was a very nice affair, good food for thought, good food to feed the body and wonderful fellowship to feed the soul!

I would certainly recommend this group to anybody who would care to participate.

I need to go out again tonight as it is Lit Chat.  I shall be reading my story on the snowflake and I also need to deliver the jade necklace to one of my fellow writers.  It should be a nice event also.

Tomorrow, I hope to stay home and rest!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Jade and Lapiz necklace

I finally finished restringing a friend's gorgeous necklace.  It was a difficult job as I only had a picture to go by of the broken necklace.

However, after much fiddling around, I am finally satisfied.  I hope that my friend will be too as this necklace means a lot to her.  She bought it when she was in China at a Museum and paid a pretty penny for it I am sure.

I have made it with the finest of materials available and finished it off with crimps beads and clam shells which will make it even more secure.

It should last her the rest of her days.

I hope that she likes it.  It has not been an easy job for some reason.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Dorothy Gordon's Party instead of a funeral

I just love this concept.  Dorothy chose to have a huge party while she is alive instead of a funeral. It was held at a lovely venue, the Yacht Club at the waterfront here in Hamilton, Ontario.

The room was crowded with many generations mingling.  From little babies to teenagers to much older folk. 

Dorothy has had a very interesting life and has achieved a great deal and done a lot of good in this world.

Many groups were represented there from the Agencies she has worked in and the various committees. 

Dorothy in the Air Force during the Second World War

The yummy cake celebrating her life
Several people told some wonderful stories of her and one man led a sing song.  I particularly enjoyed the Scottish lady who told stories about the Gordon Clan in her very Scottish voice.  She had everybody laughing.

Dorothy has worked on so many committees, taught at Mohawk College, and worked for the betterment of human life.  Through her work, an agency for families with children was started which is still going strong after 23 years if I am not mistaken.

Through it all, she has been a wife and mother, a teacher, a friend, a councillor, a grandmother, a great grandmother, an advocate for justice and the list could go on and on.

Portraits and snapshsots of Dorothy when she was younger

Part of the lovely refreshments

Dorothy's life in pictures

Thelma, Dorothy and Chris
I was fortunate enough to sit with two of these ladies and we had a lovely time chatting.  Both had lived in Toronto at one time so we were able to make conversation about that as we had never met before.

Barbara, Dorothy's daughter talking about her Mom

Dorothy replying

Thelma, Dorothy and Wilma
Many of her fellow Mohawk College teachers came as well as her buddies from the Air Force.  The teacher sang a halarious song about Dorothy which I enjoyed tremendously.

Mohawk College fellow teachers singing for Dorothy
A scene from the window of the water

Quite a different scene from my last visit - Andrew & Rahel's Wedding in the late Spring

It was a thoroughly enjoyable event and I was so touched to have been invited.  Thelma offered to bring me home.  I had gotten lost getting there, walking in the wrong direction, towards the Haida ship.  It was not too pleasant as it was pouring rain.  I finally saw somebody else walking and they pointed me in the right direction which was a long way away.  I was very glad to finally arrive at the Yacht Club. 

I had only been by car before but had decided to go by the #4 Bayfront bus.  It was quite a hike from the bus stop but at least it was not cold!

I was due at another party in the building but this one went on till after 5 so missed that party. 

Tomorrow I plan to have a restful day, work on one of my stories and finish the necklace I am doing for a friend.

Thanks for reading my blog about this wonderful human being, my friend Dorothy. 

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Tower Poetry Society Christmas Party 2010

Today our annual Christmas party was held at Rhoda's lovely home.  Quite a few people attended, although not all.

It was a potluck and one of the poets brought a bought cake with "Poets Rock" on it.  My poor pound cake was lost in the shadow of that wonderful cake.

The wonderful bought cake
Stella picked me up and we arrived a little early at Rhoda's place but she was ready for us in any event.  There is so much construction around that I almost hate to let people pick me up as it is such a trial getting through.

It was a very cozy event and we did something different this time.  People could read some of their work at the end of the party and several people did.  I particularly loved the children's story that Kay told us.  It was so great! 

Paul, our guest poet from England

Part of the group

Part of the group

Jeff holding up his latest publication about cats.

Valerie, our president, cutting the store bought cake

It was a very nice party and Rhoda was a great hostess.  Jeff brought me home as I didn't want Stella to have to go out of her way again, through all the construction going on. 

A great time!

Church of the Ascension - Christmas Dinner

I was invited for a very festive occasion by a friend who goes to the Anglican Church.  It was quite a pleasant surprise when she suggested this idea and we were lucky to get tickets at the last moment.

The event started off with a Mix and Mingle from 5 p.m. where they had various nibbles and non-alcoholic punch as well as the other.  The interesting thing is that I recognized several people who attend the concerts at Whitehern in the group. This congregation was very welcoming and my friend Jennifer and I chatted with others while nibbling on the delicious  tidbits.

At 6 p.m., a turkey dinner was served with all the trimmings.  I was delighted to see turnip as well as mashed potatoes, peas cooked to perfection, cranberry sauce, gravy, rolls and butter.  It was served buffet style which was a good idea.  Apparently they had cooked three big turkeys for this occasion and there was plenty to go around.

Dessert was home made cookies and squares.  A birthday celebration with a huge cake was celebrated at this time for one of their members so this group had cake instead of cookies.  Everybody sang happy birthday to the birthday girl.  Very nice.

Coffee and tea followed.  We had very compatible people at our table and it was so nice to sit with them and enjoy their company. 

To me, the highlight was the children from the Suzuki School of Music and their performance.  These little ones (the youngest being five years of age) performed extremely well and were very serious musicians.  I see a bright future for them if they continue learning the violin.

They played many delightful Christmas carols and the audience showed their appreciation with loud applause.  I admire the patience of their two teachers.

To me, it was a very touching moment.  Here are several pictures of the  young children playing.  My friend Jennifer took these pictures.

The Suzuki School of Music

Another shot of the young children playing their violins - the smallest child is the little guy sitting down on the chair. He is just five years of age and learning to play the violin. 
Near the end of the event, those who had bought tickets for $1.00 received their prizes.  I was very fortunate and received two prizes, one a wooden tray and the other a beautiful glass serving plate.  Both will come in extremely handy for my parties.

This surprise evening was a delightful time, spent with nice people and what a joy to hear the children play so beautifully. 

Thanks for reading my blog.