Month: October 2009

Sunnybrook Top 100

I love living in Toronto and the amazing services that are found within our city. When I was in Sunnybrook I was amazed with the nursing staff and the doctors that I talked to, so naturally when I read this I wasn’t all that surprised.

“It is truly an honour to be named among the country’s best working environments,” says Dr. Barry McLellan, President and CEO of Sunnybrook. “I am particularly proud of our numerous programs supporting staff wellness and recognition, but the main reason we are included on this list is the people who come to work here every day. I am so proud of our dedicated staff, physicians and volunteers, who are unwavering in their dedication and commitment to making Sunnybrook one of the best places to work, receive care, learn and discover.”

Sunnybrook was recognized as one of the GTA’s top employers and one of Canada’s greenest companies for 2009. Again this year, the hospital participated in the extensive application process, describing the business, workforce, physical environment, work and social atmosphere, health, financial and family-friendly benefits as well as compensation, vacation and personal day policies, internal communications, performance management, continuing education and professional and community development. The selection committee examined the recruitment histories of over 75,000 employers across Canada and invited 24,000 employers to apply. Sunnybrook was selected from the over 2,600 employers that started this year’s application process to be among the 100 best places to work in Canada.

“This well-deserved designation confirms what we have felt for years,” says Dr. McLellan.” Sunnybrook is indeed a special place and one of the best organizations to work for in the country – hospital or otherwise.”

ht to marketwire


A Third Way of Preaching

This is from a post on Scot McKnight’s blog that can be found originally here.  My only question is whether or not enough emphasis is placed on the value of teaching from those that are capable of doing so. I agree that the church would be better off if more people tried to live a life that emulated what Christ taught, however if no one is their to teach and guide people towards that life, can it happen?



What is most needed is a complete spiritual formation approach to the entire church and for each person; outcomes need to be formulated by the leaders and the church so that the whole approach is embraced. Within the overall approach to realizing outcomes, which I would say are loving God, loving others and a life of holiness, sermons play a role and sometimes an important one. But serious formative changes occur when the individual and the group participate in, activate, and integrate what is being taught. (By the way, that last sentence requires pages of discussion.) And these formative changes take place within a set of outcomes. And, perhaps most importantly, they take place with spiritual directors, pastors, teachers and friends who come alongside to help a person.


The biggest issue here is not preaching; the biggest issue is the weight given to preaching in the overall mission of the local church. Emphasizing the weight of preaching is the Third Way.


All of this, of course, within the parameters of the work of God’s Spirit through Word and Eucharist, which means respect for the Great Tradition of the Church. There is no Third Way preaching until we get beyond the Sunday morning service as the primary form of education and formation in the church.

Really … Really?!?!

When will the war of words end between Vancouver and Toronto? First it was in beer ads and now this in the Vancouver Sun: a call to publish jokes about Leaf fans. In a world of war, homelessness, poverty and youth violence, I am pretty sure any newspaper can step up their level of professionalism. I am a Leaf fan at heart, but the author’s statement about the Leafs not winning a cup in 42 years, compared to the Canucks 38 year drought seems a little foolish to me.

Okay, so maybe it’s a case of the pot calling the kettle black. Sure the Canucks don’t have a Stanley Cup in their 38 seasons of existence, but the Maple Leafs haven’t won a Cup in 42 years!

Plus they haven’t beat the Canucks in the last five years and haven’t won a game all year. Some have called their season pathetic, others have called it dreadful. So let them have it!

We’re Number Seven …

These are words from Bono that appeared in the Globe and Mail the other day. They have been taken from an article written by Bono originally found in the NY Times.

“In the same week that Mr. Obama won the Nobel, the United States was ranked as the most admired country in the world, leapfrogging from seventh to the top of the Nation Brands Index survey — the biggest jump any country has ever made. Like the Nobel, this can be written off as meaningless … a measure of Mr. Obama’s celebrity (and we know what people think of celebrities).

But an America that’s tired of being the world’s policeman, and is too pinched to be the world’s philanthropist, could still be the world’s partner. And you can’t do that without being, well, loved. Here come the letters to the editor, but let me just say it: Americans are like singers — we just a little bit, kind of like to be loved. The British want to be admired; the Russians, feared; the French, envied. (The Irish, we just want to be listened to.) But the idea of America, from the very start, was supposed to be contagious enough to sweep up and enthrall the world.”

Canada has dropped considerably in world rankings as the American label has risen. Even though its so-called brand recognition and appeal is rising our dollar is continuing to stay strong. Hopefully it lasts until Christmas. Here is the “expert” opinion found in the article about our slide in the rankings.

“I suspect because in the absence of any very detailed knowledge of, or familiarity with, Canada, most people see it as a simple stereotype: a kind of ‘not-America’ or ‘America through the looking glass’. So when the US is viewed negatively, Canada is viewed positively, but when the US returns to favour – as it is now doing – then Canada loses meaning and relevance. If people feel they can trust America, they no longer need Canada. Not a great situation, to have your national reputation tied to someone else’s.”

As I thought about how reputation can be based on outside forces, I wondered how much control youth have on their own reputation even though it may consume their every thought. It seems to me that they really are not in control of their own reputation at all. It is those around them that hold all the power.

ht to the Globe and Mail

Come to the Water!

This morning I had the privilege of reading the following passage while listening to the song lyrics below. God is a great God that always seems to know the words we need to hear.

Isaiah 55

Invitation to the Thirsty

1 “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.

2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.

3 Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David.

4 See, I have made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander of the peoples.

5 Surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations that do not know you will hasten to you, because of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor.”

6 Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near.

7 Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.

8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.

9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

10 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,

11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

12 You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.

13 Instead of the thornbush will grow the pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow. This will be for the LORD’s renown, for an everlasting sign, which will not be destroyed.”

Come to the water

there’s a war going on just across the street there’s a rage that’s burning to an angry beat I can feel the thirst but there’s no relief we need a river

there’s a sound in the distance like a thunder cloud waiting for the rain while the sun beats down Can you feel it rising from the underground? we need a river

oh let justice roll like rivers, oh let mercy flow with love, love

Come to the water, come to the water of life It will never run dry Come to the water, run to the water of life It will never run dry

there’s a cry from the child in the factory there’s a prayer for the prisoners of poverty Save us from the greed and the apathy we need a river

there’s a hope like a flood running down our street we’re an army of peacemakers on our feet take us to the place love and mercy meet there is a river

Family Dinners and the Quality of Teens’ Relationships with Mom and Dad

Teens who report having excellent relationships with their parents are less likely to use substances.

Teens who have frequent family dinners (five to seven family dinners per week) are likelier to say they have excellent relationships with their parents, and teens who have infrequent family dinners (fewer than three per week) are likelier to say they have fair or poor relationships with their parents.

Compared to teens who have five to seven family dinners per week, those who have fewer than three family dinners per week are five times likelier to say they have a fair or poor relationship with their mother, and they’re almost four times likelier to say they have a fair or poor relationship with their father.

See the full survey here.

ht to ThinkYouthMinistry

To The Beauty – Alexander Pushkin

To The Beauty
Alexander Puskin

She’s all just harmony and wonder,

Higher than passions and the world,

She rests, with her sweet shyness, under

Her beauty’s ritual abode;

She looks around self in silence:

There’re no contenders hers, no friends,

Our beauties’ circle, pale and blend,

Fades out in her dazzling brightness.

Wherever weren’t you hurry, yet,

Even to date with your beloved,

What sense with weren’t your heart upset,

Even with song of highest sound, –

But having met her in alarm,

You suddenly shall stop, embarrassed –

In ecstasy, like one of prayers,

Feeling the holiness of charm.

Winter Journey – Alexander Pushkin

I am so cold this morning. This seemed like a good choice from one of my favorite authors/poets, Alexander Pushkin. Enjoy!

Winter Journey
Alexander Pushkin

Now the moon through fog that shivers
Makes its way across the night,
Soaking melancholy meadows
In a melancholy light.

Down the road through dismal winter,
My quick carriage carries on
Where the sleigh-bell’s tuneless tinkle
Is a numbing monotone.

Notes familiar in the music
Of the coachman’s winding song
Go from debonair carousal
To lamenting lovers’ wrong.

Neither hut nor glowing window….
Snow and hinterland…My eye
Merely marks the ciphered mileposts
Coming close and going by.

Glum and dreary- but tomorrow,
Nina dearest, I return
To your hearth and face, forgoing
All my thought to gaze and yearn.

Though the clock’s unhurried finger
Strike its circle out anew
Sending home the tardy stranger,
Midnight shall not part us two.

But for now the road is dreary.
Sleep has hushed the coachman’s tune.
Tedious, too, the tuneless sleigh-bell.
Fog is masking out the moon.