World Youth Day in Sydney

The Central Business District of Sydney, Austr...
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Over 250,000 young people from around the world are gathered in Sydney, Australia for Catholic World Youth Day.

Unfortunately, the darker side of Sydney is trying to dim the light by offering discounts in their brothel for anyone carrying a WYD accreditation card.

Reflecting the religious fervor in Sydney, “Ratzinger Rules” was spray painted on a war memorial overnight. Josef Ratzinger is the birth name of Pope Benedict. But despite the influx of Catholic pilgrims, Sydney’s darker side remained not far from the surface. A Sydney brothel welcomed pilgrims, urging “potential sinners to commit their sins” before the Pope leaves Australia. The brothel offered a 10 percent discount to anyone with a WYD accreditation card.

Read more on this story at the Washington Post.

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Comfort Zone

The following poem was sent to me a couple of years ago. I still read it to motivate myself. No one seems to know who wrote it… Your Comfort Zone.

I used to have a comfort zone
Where I knew I couldn’t fail.
The same four walls of BUSY work,
Were really more like a jail.

I longed so much to do the things,
I’d never done before.
But I stayed inside my comfort zone,
And paced the same old floor.

I said it didn’t matter,
That I wasn’t doing much.
I said I didn’t care for things,
Like diamonds, furs, and such.

I claimed to be TOO busy,
With things inside my zone.
But deep inside I longed for
Something special of my own.

I couldn’t let my life go by,
Just watching OTHERS win.
I held my breath and stepped outside,
To let the change begin.

I took a step and with new strength,
I’d never felt before.
I kissed my comfort zone “goodbye,”
And closed and LOCKED the door.

If you are in a comfort zone,
Afraid to venture out.
Remember that ALL winners were,
At one time filled with DOUBT.

A step or two and words of praise,
Can make your dreams come true.
Greet your future with a smile,
Success is there for you.

Learning to Lead


My wife and I were in Sydney, Australia, and we had an opportunity to attend a performance of the Sydney Philharmonic Orchestra at the famed Opera House… When we arrived thirty minutes early, the orchestra members were already warming up… As they warmed up, the music sounded like noise to me.

At one minute before eight the conductor walked onto the stage. Immediately everybody sat up straight. As he stepped onto the riser, everybody came to attention. At eight o’clock he raised the baton, and when his arms came down, the music started. What had been noise a few seconds earlier became a beautiful melody.

The orchestra leader had converted a team of all-stars to an all-star team… No one instrument dominated any other; rather, each harmonized with and became part of the others.

The conductor had, for a number of years, been a musician in an orchestra. He had learned to be obedient and follow the orchestra conductor when he was a performer. In short, he had learned to obey so that later he could command.

I once saw a young man with a T-shirt emblem proclaiming, “I follow no one.” What a tragedy! Because until he learns to follow, he will never be able to lead.

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