Author: Dave Andrews

Muslims and Christians praying for peace

In the face of ongoing conflict, it’s time for Christians and Muslims to come together and pray for grace and peace. And Ramadan, one of the Five Pillars of Islam, a time for self-examination, devotion and reading the scriptures, which starts Saturday, gives us a perfect opportunity to come together. In my latest book of Christian-Muslim reflections, entitled ‘Ramadan’, I show how through fasting and reflecting we can focus on the priorities of loving God and loving neighbour, and bring our Christian and Muslim friends together for mutually encouraging interfaith conversations. I have written three sets of Christian-Muslim reflections...

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Burra Din or the Big Day

Long-term Westender contributor Dave Andrews reminisces about an unusual Christmas celebration. In India, Christmas is called Burra Din or the Big Day. How do you celebrate a Big Day like Christmas in a country like India?  We lived in India for twelve years, doing community development work with marginalised people in New Delhi. And I will always remember one year sitting around, drinking chai with friends, and discussing how we would do Christmas.   We were living in a multi-faith community at the time. With a dozen Protestants, half‑a‑dozen Catholics, a few Orthodox, a bunch of Hindus, a couple of...

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Calming The Troubled Waters Of Concern

Dave Andrews looks at the unwritten laws of a civilised society. Tonight I’m off to a meeting hosted by a friend on Sunshine Coast to speak with a group of concerned citizens about how Christians and Muslims can live in peace. Given the heightened state of anxiety about the hostility bubbling underneath the surface of our country that irrupted in recent times on the Coast into protests and counter-protests, it is a conversation that we need to have with one another. We need to remember, that contrary to the impression of impending doom that the merchants of terror and...

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Lest We Forget Our Soldiers

An ANZAC Day Reflection by Dave Andrews  We need to celebrate courage and comradeship wherever we find it. Wherever we find it among our soldiers in combat we need to celebrate it loud and clear. But if we choose to celebrate ANZAC day, we need to do it with extreme caution, lest we forget that our celebration of those legends can be used to victimize succeeding generations of soldiers. A well-known Aussie Vietnam Vet who died recently was Bill ‘Kookaburra’ Coolburra. As a 19-year-old indigenous volunteer, Bill was among the first Australian combat troops into Vietnam. He was a...

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A Role Model For Scott Morison?

Asa Jennings was born in Upstate New York, USA on September 20, 1877. Very little is known about Asa’s childhood. And, according to Giles Milton, Asa grew up to be a very unremarkable adult. Giles said Asa was a ‘shy individual, five feet tall and diminutive of build, he wore large glasses and had an uncommonly large mouth’. And ‘when he smiled he looked like a frog’. In spite of his shyness Asa studied to become a pastor and was ordained as a Methodist minister. Even then it was said of him, that as he was a ‘hunchback’ –...

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