Sunday, 20 July 2014

My Diary.... Putting others on a pedestal.... The Big Question - still waiting on answers... Jim Brown and Willie Stenhouse...


                                                               My Diary...


12th – Once again it was a pleasure to be part of the Kilmarnock Spiritualist Church’s Development Group.
15th – 20th – a wee break in North Devon.  The weather was perfect.

26th –Another enjoyable visit to the Kilmarnock Spiritualist Church (SNU) for their Development Group.

29th – President Maureen Land could not have selected a better name for her church. The Love and Friendship Spiritualist Church.  There is always a great welcome for everyone who enters  this church at The Couper Institute, 86 Clarkston Road, Cathcart, Glasgow, G44 3DA on a Sunday evening at 6.30pm.  ** Due to anticipated travel delays, we are closed for 2 weeks during the GamesThere will be no Sunday services on 27th July or 3rd August 2014.  There will be no Wednesday Circle for the next two weeks. The church will open this Sunday 20th July and Sunday 10th August 2014.**
The Circle will re-open on Wednesday 6th August 2014.

Maureen Land an excellent medium in her own right of many years standing and runs an excellent development circle. (closed)  Sharing her vast knowledge of Spiritualist the Religion.   Maureen’s fledglings are given personal attention and time to ripen and mature in a natural way to be the ‘real thing before they set foot on the platform. 

3rd – July I was on my way to the Arbroath Spiritual Centre where there is a great welcome for all who walk through the doors.  Anyone in holiday in the area could pay a visit to the Church at20-22 Commerce Street, DD11 1NB on Thursday evenings Divine service starts at 7.30pm.
9th – A meditation class.

I was not so busy in the past month and that let me get some of my psychic research attended too.


Another celebrity found guilty of serious crimes that went on for decades and I find it hard to believe, unnoticed.  I think that most of us are guilty of putting others on pedestals and worshiping them.  Look at those who go completely overboard about their favourite singer, actor/actress or sportsperson.  They take whoever it is to a different level in their mind and totally believe they can do no wrong.  These ‘stars’ are made out to be the greatest singer when they actually are only a good singer like so many others. But because of their looks, voice or songs that appeal to you.  They are the greatest and can do no wrong.
Just imagine you heard that some young person from a children’s home had complained about abuse by your ‘superstar’.  What would your immediate reactions be?

Then if the same young person approached you and pointed out a tramp sitting on a park bench and said the same thing about them.  Again – what would your immediate reaction be?

I doubt they would be exactly the same.  Although I am not saying that in the end you would completely dismiss the complaint of your ‘super hero’.
When I was young the singer I liked best was Craig Douglas and still today he is probably my favourite singer.  I supported the football team Ayr United and my favourite players were defender Bill Elliot and goalkeeper Lenny Round.  But I was never fanatical about any of them, singer, team or football players. I would comment negatively if I felt the need to do so.  But from an early age I could never see why so many worshiped certain entertainers or sports people. 

Maybe that was part of the way I was brought up, never to think anyone is better than another.  If the road sweeper does not sweep the streets or the dustman does not empty our rubbish bins our local area will be in a terrible state.
We have also heard in the past few weeks  of allegations of sexual abuse by those in high places.  Those who have so much power, that they can halt such allegations from going any further.  Many put the reputation of their political party before anything else, even before getting justice for the victim who has suffered from the most heinous of crimes.  And those individuals and organizations that know what is going on and keep quiet in my mind are equally to blame as those who have committed the heinous crimes.

I have had several emails connected with all this and most ask “Why do God / Spirit allow all this to go on?”
The answer is simple... We have been given free-will and so many abuse this precious gift.  Take this away from us and we are no more than puppets that act and think when someone pulls a string telling us to do this or that

What we sowed in the past – we are reaping today



I mentioned in my previous blog the omission of a representative of Spiritualism in BBC’s Sunday morning programme “The Big Question”. The programme as many of you will know is about religious and ethical debate. So why a discussion on “Is there life after death “and have no representative from Spiritualism?  After all the BBC in its website on religion lists Spiritualism as a religion with the comment, “Spiritualists believe in communication with the spirits of people who have died.”
I ranted and raved about this on Facebook, not always the best thing to do. Someone suggested that maybe a Spiritualist organisation was asked to take part but declined for some reason or other.  I could not see this but I suppose it was possible.  So I contacted Minister David R Brunton president Spiritualist National Union (SNU) who sent an immediate reply.
“I was aware of the programme and we did try to get a representative on the panel for the recording of the programme but sadly on this occasion without success”.
I sent a letter to the Director-General of the BBC asking why a representative from Spiritualism was not invited on to the programme, especially when the debate was “Is there life after death?”   I posted the letter first-class on 15/6/14 and only today 17/7/14 have I had a reply, well some sort of a reply.  A standard letter tells me that the BBC aim to reply to complaints within 10 working days and do so for most but not for all.  Well it took 24-working days to contact me about my complaint.  Maybe I just hit a busy time, maybe many Spiritualist writing and emailing with the same complaint.
My complaint has been passed on to the relevant department and it may take longer than ten days to get back to me.  I am not holding my breath.
Then I am told that to use the licence fee efficiently the BBC may not investigate every issue if it does not suggest a substantative breach of guidelines.
 A month further on and I am still waiting on a reply. I am sure I will get a reply but as we all know the wheels of big corporations turn slowly.  . Hopefully there will be an explanation from the BBC by the time my next blog goes online.
So we will wait and see...
 My comments on the BBC opened up another interesting debate and I was surprised at the number of people who commented along such lines as
Do we be need to be on such programmes? We would only be ridiculed.   We are managing not too bad as it is at the moment – so why not just do our own thing and let others do theirs?”
When I read these comments to a friend he said “Too many Spiritualists are happy to sit back with a little bit of power whether it is committee member or a medium and not look at the big picture.  After a long hard fight by those who want Spiritualism to be given more respect we are now close to our target.  The Interfaith network has changed its rules for membership.  Hopefully this year the SNU will gain provisional membership to this organization”.
That I applaud but it brought the words from an old Spiritualist friend into my head.  “With all these new rules and regulations been put into place by Spiritualist bodies it appears Spiritualism is being dumbing down so it will be accepted by other religions.   Spiritualism should not make and changes so it can become a member of a club – a club of religions.  We must be true to ourselves and Spirit”...
Both, excellent points for debate.  Spiritualism cannot sit back we have to move forward with the times and I feel that is what we have been doing.  But change for the sake of change or change to be accepted is not on.  We have to think of all those who fought hard to get spiritualism where it is today we must not let them down.  Nor, let Spirit down.

                                                   Jim Brown

Jim Brown passed to Spirit a few days ago.  Jim, and May his wife served many of our churches over the years and both thoroughly deserve the title “Great Ambassadors for Spirit”.  I spoke to Jim on the phone a week before he passed and he showed great spirit and determination.  More about Jim in my next blog.

                                            Willie Stenhouse
13th April saw the passing to spirit of 93-year-old Willie Stenhouse a stalwart of Spiritualism in Scotland since 1949. It was in that year after coming home from the army that Willie joined Dunfermline Spiritualist Church (SNU) and immediately became an active member.  Over the years he became Vice President and later honorary vice-president. He represented the church at many Scottish and Irish District Council meetings.  In 2009 the church held a special celebration to mark Willie's 60-years of dedicated service.  He was also an extremely gifted healer and a great mentor to many new healers starting out.


Mr Stenhouse had great knowledge of the Spiritualist movement; he was an old school traditionalist.  He loved the teachings of William Stainton, Moses and Sliver Birch and often quoted them in readings.  He also frequently spoke of Helen Duncan and Albert Best.

 On a personal level I always found Willie a kind, caring and compassionate gentleman, a gentleman is every sense of the word.  I remember one evening setting foot on the platform and immediately noticed something was different.  In all my previous visits to the church Willie had been sitting in his usual seat in the front row, but this evening it was empty.  All through the service I was concerned that Willie may be ill or age was finally catching up with him.  I could not wait till near the end of the service when the collection plates were going around and I whispered the chairperson for the evening “Is Willie OK?”  She replied, “Yes – he is away to London for a few days”.  Willie would have been about 87 at this time but still game enough to spend a few days in London.

 In recent years Willie was unable to attend the church but his friends in the church kept in close touch with him.  As I have often said the term “A great Ambassador for Spirit” handed out too freely.  But in this case William Stenhouse certainly deserves such a title...