Anthony Bernard: We must help each other to find hope

Published:
3:00 p.m. July 9, 2022



Shining a light on the needy, with Anthony Bernard.


Anthony Bernard, manager of the Exmouth community pantry.
– Credit: Photo: Simon Horn.

In all this chaos, how can we hope – is there a God we can believe in?

My imaginary Heavenly Host committee no doubt has a plan, but the plan is beyond my thinking.

After the immediate issues of strikes, travel chaos, by-elections and the cost of living, there are serious long-term global issues.

People’s kindness and helpfulness to others is not breaking news, but actually happens everywhere.

My time with the food bank shows how there are a large number of community volunteers and donations, much appreciated by those in need of help.

“One Creator, One Planet, One Family” was a slogan of a Muslim food bank in New York at the start of the lockdown, and holds true for all of us, including Christians, though atheists omit the Creator. Even ancient Rome had a hierarchy of gods – Jupiter, Juno, Minerva, Mars, Bacchus and others.

My imaginary angelic host also has a departmental structure, corresponding to the understandings of different religions and respecting the Christian tradition.

The tagline means we’re all in this together whether we like the other family members or not; the question is what each of us actually does in response to problems, which is how we are measured in most cultures.

Massive pay rises in the UK would solve the cost of living crisis in one fell swoop, but replace it with a disastrous inflation crisis.

A lower salary will force most of us to cut expenses; fewer trips abroad will lead to an overflow of holiday destinations in Western countries. Wage increases will lead to price increases, government-funded increases will raise taxes. So many choices.

Prices have risen all over the world, especially the price of Russian gas which is funding the war in Ukraine while fueling the German and Italian economies.

Countries neighboring the EU also have economic problems, as does the United States.

The message is that most of us should do the best we can with what we have, not worry too much about what we don’t have, but also support others less fortunate since we are all in this “one one family” – come what may.

Global warming continues with more floods, more droughts, more excessive heat and more coastal erosion.

“One Planet” is an important element; we really are all in the same boat.

Large parts of Exmouth were marshy until the land was drained; what could happen soon with rising sea levels will give Mike Menhenitt research for his column.

A fast car breaking the speed limit passed me a few years ago, soon after turning into a fitness center.

How much healthier the driver would be if she had walked there, saving her gas, my nervous energy, her carbon footprint and her gym fees.

Likewise, many dog ​​walkers arrive near the sea by car.

If dogs took overweight owners for walks near their homes, it would save a lot, with less dog hair in their cars.

Disasters are all around us, famine in parts of Africa, floods in Bangladesh, war in Ukraine, oppression in Myanmar and other disasters.

The Heavenly Host has now authorized an earthquake in Afghanistan, the only country that can least afford additional trouble. Is this a warning?

As smart as we are, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are mostly unexpected.

God knows what’s next, no more strikes, earthquakes, wars, by-elections or price hikes.

We all need to come together and support each other as best we can.

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