Stories that will help you put faith back into humanity

Heart warmer

 

Often, the media — including myself — get caught up in things that make your blood pressure rise. Too often, bad things happen and the media highlights it constantly.

Too often, we get into petty ‘debates’ — a.k.a culture wars — and we fight to the death. We attack our opponents, tear them to shreds and allow the petty things destroy relationships. The media, in particular, seems to do this ad nauseum.

So, when you hear about a story that’s so touching that it makes Andrew Bolt choke up on his show, it’s a welcome relief.

Here are two of these stories.

Newcastle Knights player, Trent Hodkinson took terminally ill girl, 15 – year – old Hannah Rye to the her Year 10 formal after her school, Kurri Kurri High, agreed to move the date so Hodkinson could take her. She looked gorgeous. I think the Newcastle Knights and Kurri Kurri High should be commended for doing something to special to a beautiful young girl who needed something to put a smile on her face.

The second story I want to talk about was published in Mamamia. 94 – year – old Shirley Batchelder from Nashville, Tennessee, completed her ‘bucket list’ by doing something amazing. She told WSMV that she wanted to do an ad for TV. The TV station granted her two – minute slot for free. What she wanted to do took much less time. On the advertisement, she left a simple and profound message:

Love one another. Love one another.

So beautiful. And, unfortunately, simple to forget in the era of tension and just general busyness. Love one another. Just gorgeous.

These two beautiful souls, each at the opposite ends of the age spectrum are people we should never forget. A terminally ill girl who touched a community so much that she was granted her dream formal. And a beautiful old lady who wanted to put out a message that can easily said, and yet so easily forgotten.

It just goes to show that there is still beauty in this world.

What uplifting or touching stories have your read or heard recently? Feel free to tell me in the comments below. Leave links, too, if you like. 

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Valentine’s Day – what’s it mean in 2017

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Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, the day when lovers declare their love for each other and secret admirers tell their crush how they feel. Well, that’s the common narrative.

Of course, the origin of Valentine’s Day goes way back. There are two commonly stories that are thought to be the origin of Valentine’s Day. One was that the ancient Romans had a festival Lupercalia in which, according to NPR, men sacrificed a goat or dog before beating young women who were looking to find a mate. I’ve read elsewhere over the years that a names were drawn in a ‘lottery’ to determine who would marry whom. This festival was believed to take place between the 13 and 15 of February. Things changed when Catholicism became the dominant religion in the Roman Empire and the festival was dedicated to St. Valentine.

Another common theory is that Valentine was a Roman Catholic priest in the Rome around the fourth century AD. At this time, there was a crackdown on Christian traditions, including marriage. Valentine defied the Emperor, and even when he was arrested and inprisoned, continued to conduct weddings in prison. While in prison, he befriended the daughter of a Roman guard. They exchanged letters (a.k.a. ‘valentines’). It’s alleged that Valentine died on February 14, hence the date. However, the exact identity of the Saint Valentine isn’t known (there is more than one St. Valentine).

 

The romantic aspect of the day also has a long history, with tokens being exchanged by lovers as far back as the Middle Ages. The 1800’s was when Valentine’s Day cards started being sold by retail outlets.

Fast forward 200 or so years and I think you’ll find attitudes toward Valentine’s Day split. Some say it’s too commercial, some use it as a day to show love and appreciation to friends, while others use it to spoil their partners or show interest in a crush. I do get that the day is heavily commercialised and it’s mostly linked with American culture, rather than Australian, but I think the idea of celebrating love – either romantic or platonic – is lovely and sonething that the world could use more of, to be honest.For years, I’ve thought that Valentine’s Day was a great opportunity to show love to people who you may not show it on any given day. For lovers, it may be the push you need to propose to your loved one. You may just want to stay home woth your loved one that night, watching ‘The Big Bang Theory’ on DVD. Whatever floats your boat.

For some people, it may cause a genuine pain – that you wish you had someone, or maybe a reminder of a past relationship. I won’t say that this is silly or that you shouldn’t feel that way. If Valentine’s Day is one that brings pain, I hope you’ll find comfort in surrounding yourself with the things and people you love and care about.

 

Ultimately, Valentine’s Day is like any other day. By that, I mean it’s good for others, sometimes a new opportunity and a day that you can make what you will.

What does Valentine’s Day mean to you? How will you spend the day?