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A Buddhist friend in Australia asked for my help in buying a used car. He was frustrated after several unsuccessful attempts, disappointed and baffled by the experience; after all, he had done nothing particularly bad in his life. For a Buddhist, the law of karma means that bad deeds result in bad consequences, so why […]
At a university in one of Australia’s major cities, we have a witness among Muslim students, with a weekly Bible study and a bookstand. Students from Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, and other countries join us to hear about Jesus. One day, I gave an invitation to a young […]
“I’m not in a good situation right now.” Daryush (not his real name) stares at the floor of the church hall with glazed eyes, cup in hand (two teabags, four sugars). The words slowly spill out in broken English. He had just spent the last of that fortnight’s money on antibiotics when his caseworker called. […]
I don’t often cry reading the news, but I did shed a tear earlier in the year when three year-old Alan Kurdi appeared in my newsfeed. The images of his body, face down in the sand, remain a chilling reminder of the dangers faced by those fleeing conflicts in Syria and across the Middle East. […]
When our pastor asked us 4 years ago to consider being the voluntary coordinators to welcome & assist a few refugees from Burma expected to arrive in Wollongong and to come to our church, we had very little idea what it might involve. Our role is now called “Re-settler Support and Integration” coordinators, and we’ve […]
The data from the 2011 Australian Census is now being released. The below table, which I have compiled from data given by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), gives figures for all of Australia as well as all of our capital cities. It shows that the percentage of people born overseas has risen slightly since the […]