Monday Morning Musings

Posted on December 11, 2017 under Monday Morning Musings with one comment

Immigration Minister, Lena Diab presents Human Rights Award to members of SAFE


Here’s a SAFE bet.

On Friday, December 8th. at a ceremony in Halifax, SAFE, ground breakers locally in bringing Syrian refugees families to Antigonish, were awarded a Nova Scotia Human Rights Award. Long before the plight of the refugee crisis became a major story, the local SAFE group was trying their best to bring awareness to the humanitarian crisis half a world away.

Over the past two years, SAFE has sponsored several families with another handful in the queue. Their work has been exemplary and according to MP Sean Fraser, the settlement of Syrian refugees in Antigonish by the three groups (including Tri-Heart and CARE ) has become the gold standard in Canada. But make no mistake, SAFE laid the groundwork and they rightfully deserve this prestigious award.

Christmas is bearing down on us like a “nor’easter.”

The quasi frantic pace leading up to December 25th. is palpable. Being empty nesters, you don’t get the same buzz without kids around… Nor the mental, physical and fiscal exhaustion that goes with the season!

But for every person experiencing the joy of Christmas, you can bet your boots that for someone else, it is a time of the year which brings sorrow and tears. Yes. Someone you know and love is hurting. Some people are lonely.  Loss of loved ones is tough 24 hours of the day but at Christmas it is somehow magnified because so many other people are in a celebratory mood. I don’t want to be “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.” But when you meet up with someone that you know is silently grieving, give them the best gift possible… your time and a hug… and a good cup of tea.

Can’t bear the thought of preparing another big turkey dinner? Sacrilege, you say? As most of my loyal readers are “north of 60 “, you know what I mean.  As B.B. King sang, “The thrill is gone, the thrill has gone away, the thrill is gone, baby.”  (Stop calling me Scrooge. I can hear you all the way to Court Street! ). If you want to experience Christmas dinner in a whole new way, why not join the many people who have their Christmas dinner at St. James Church in the hall.

This is open to the public. Many of the folks who attend the twice weekly Hot Lunch program come that day. Foreign students who can’t make it home are regular attendees. Sometimes it’s someone who has experienced a loss and just wants to be around people. And then there others like us, who for one reason or another, like to spend December 25th. at St. James. All the food is donated (by participants and other people) and there is live music (Christmas Carols). Members of my family will be providing the music this year as we have done from time to time in the past. It has become one of our newest and most enjoyable, Christmas traditions.

And if you haven’t had your fill of the MacDonalds, son Peter, daughter Betsy and yours truly will be performing at a fundraiser at Little Christos on December 17th. Between 6:00- 8:30. It’s in support of Aghyad Al Zhouri who recently attended Encounters with Canada symposium. I’m sure we’ll do a few Christmas carols but you’re more likely to hear Johnny Cash, Neil Young or Blue Rodeo.  You can come up on stage and sing harmonies.

Have a great week.

Reminder. Christmas book sale. Three books $25.00 + shipping. Regular $55. Value. Message me or send me an e-mail at


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