I believe the Aboriginal community and the wider Christian community …

Comment on Alice Easter 88 years after the altar arrived by John Bell.

I believe the Aboriginal community and the wider Christian community would be well served if Pat Dodson were to return to the Sacred Heart parish and talk to the people about his time as a priest in the Alice.
I am sure that his reflections on the faith and difficulties and internal politics of those times would be enlightening and welcomed by all.

John Bell Also Commented

Alice Easter 88 years after the altar arrived
The annual St Patricks Day Ball was a memorable part of Sacred Heart Parish events, directly behind Sacred Heart in the 1960s and early 70s.
Religiously attended by all us dedicated Roaming Carflick young lads and lassies, and others, from Melanka Hostel.
It was eld out in the open on the cement courtyard, in beautiful crisp night air, Milky Way blazing in the Central Desert night sky, a ritual symbolic gate crash invasion by the Orange Men at a suitably hazy stage of proceedings.
Wonderful Irish music, Pride of Erin, Barn Dance, rock n roll, imported big bottles of Melbourne Bitter from Down South.
Beyond the Mexican border, on our table, ripping the sleeve of the only suit coat owned climbing over the courtyard fence at 3am.
Then quiet reflection on indiscretions at Mass on Sunday. Good memory.


Recent Comments by John Bell

She lived where life is what you make it
A beautiful story of a beautiful soul. Yet another member of the nursing profession who gave their heart and soul to everyone in need of care.


Flag on the Hill: When No became Yes
@ Evelyne Roullet. Speak for yourself, Mrs Roullet. Australia was not built by people committing crime and doing bad things in society.
It was built by good people doing hard yakka by the sweat of their brow, in extreme hardship.
It was also built by free settlers, missionaries and Aboriginal men and women such as Mum Shirl and Doug Nicholls who worked together with their white brothers and sisters to make Australia a happy place.
And yes, I know you are simply quoting an old saying. However, it is too glib – and inappropriate – to equate it with today’s wilful crime, lack of personal responsibility and victimhood mentality that unpicks all that great work.


Wakefield insists on Anzac Oval, ignores majority
Seems to me as a former Stott House rezzie long ago that the Melanka block is the perfect tourist spot for a gallery.
But what about the sacred site trees on the Melanka block? Would a space be left for them in the middle of the gallery?
Or have they been cut down? I confess I have not seen the block for a few years.


Martin Luther King III ‘disheartened’ by what he saw in Alice
@ Evelyne Roullet. I am not sure that your reference to this Latin phrase fits the critical grog problem social situation in Alice.
The full Latin phrase is “Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam”. Roman statesman Cato the Elder 200 years before Christ was reported by Livy and other historians as saying “furthermore, it is my opinion that Carthage should be destroyed”.
Carthage was Ancient Rome’s major enemy, sitting on its doorstep about three days’ sail away in what is modern day Tunisia. Long after Cato’s death, the Roman army on the Third Punic War left not a stone upon a stone of its rival city, decreeing that nothing was to be built on the site thereafter.
I don’t think anyone envisages the “tap being turned off” completely, leaving not a keg upon a keg in the pubs and takeaways of the Alice.
We have learnt the lesson. Grog is entrenched in the DNA of every race in human culture throughout the world.
We found that out in the western world with Prohibition that will never be revisited in Alice or anywhere else after the failed experiment in the USA of the 1930s.
The trick will always be now to wisely navigate the perils of over-indulgence, especially in our young people of all races and colour who are hammering themselves for whatever reasons with the added beast of drugs.
Like Ancient Rome, the grog solution in Alice will not be built in a day. We just have to keep looking for answers.


Large number of cars vandalised at Araluen
@Josh Davis. Josh. You are being a tad unfair, quite harsh, in fact, on 99.9% of people who have been expressing serious concerns about escalating property and increasingly violent youth behaviour.

No fairminded person has been “heaping endless vitriol” on these kids. They are simply distressed and fearful of what may well happen in the very near future if this massively destructive behaviour does not stop, no matter what the root cause is.

There has to be a balance between opportunities to rehabilitate/reconnect and getting these kids to take responsibility for their own actions.

They have to be taught, if they do not know already, that the consequences of their anarchic behaviour cause serious hurt and deep stress to victims and their families. Invariably.

In many cases the nameless victims they target suffer far more than the kids who are doing the damage.

Taking personal responsibility and growing up to be good citizens knows no cultural boundaries. All cultures must apply the same standards to be met by their youth.

If these kids can simply be taken back to talk to the victims they have hurt, every time, I believe the light will eventually switch on for all except the smallest minority in every culture who may never wish to change or give a toss.

It would also be comfort for the victims and conducive to better understanding and better relations between the feared and the fearful.


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