Fred Rogers – The difficult passage from dark to light & the transcendence that takes you there with The Christian Science Monitor

Rogers had a difficult childhood. He was shy, introverted, and overweight, and was frequently homebound after suffering bouts of asthma.

https://www.fredrogerscenter.org/about-us/about-fred/early-life/

 

He was bullied and taunted as a child for his weight, and called “Fat Freddy”. According to Morgan Neville, director of the 2018 documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, Rogers had a “lonely childhood … I think he made friends with himself as much as he could. He had a ventriloquist dummy, he had [stuffed] animals, and he would create his own worlds in his childhood bedroom”

https://ew.com/movies/2018/06/09/mister-rogers-relics-wont-you-be-my-neighbor/

 

It’s easy to imagine the program’s appeal to be nostalgic, a longing for a simpler, kinder time (the last new episode ran just days before 9/11). But when the show launched nationally in 1968 the United States was in a convulsive, angry, and disillusioned state. It was a year that saw assassinations (Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy) and revealed a nation deeply divided over issues from the Vietnam War to racial equality. 
While Mr. Rogers’ core audience was children, his message was universal, and often timely. In one now-famous episode he asks an African American actor portraying a policeman to join him in cooling off by putting their feet together into a wading pool – this at a time when the racial segregation of some public swimming pools was making news. (Some also have seen a reference to the biblical story of Jesus washing his disciples’ feet, an act of humility and love.)
Mr. Rogers’ offer to his young viewers – “Won’t you be my neighbor?” – was both simple and subtly profound. It was grounded in his belief that all human relationships benefit from being based on the golden rule: Treat those around you the way you would like to be treated. “Fred’s legacy reminds us … to try and forgive those who have hurt us and to see the innate goodness in all people,” his widow, Joanne, said recently.

By the Monitor’s Editorial Board

https://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/the-monitors-view/2019/1025/Rediscovering-Mr.-Rogers

 

 

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Near-perfect ‘A Beautiful Day’ captures the wholeness of Fred Rogers

WHY WE WROTE THIS

What does it take to counter cynicism? A new movie explores the effect Fred Rogers has on a jaded journalist, a transformative experience that film critic Peter Rainer says extends to the audience, too: It’s “about the difficult passage from dark to light and the transcendence that takes you there.”

 

What gives Hanks’ performance its ballast – what elevates it far above the realm of the touchy-feely – is the suggestion that the comforts he dispenses are hard won because they have come through fire. Rogers doesn’t deny life’s desecrations. His conviction, as stated in the movie, that “each one of us is special” carries moral weight because, in spite of everything, he holds to the belief that people are inherently good.

It is not even necessary to wholeheartedly sign on to this belief to experience this movie’s glow. For the time that we are in the theater – and for some time after, too – the aura holds. At least it did for me. Who can fail to smile at the scene (based on fact) where Vogel and Rogers, in a subway car, are regaled by its passengers with the theme song from Rogers’ TV show? It’s irrelevant to complain, as some commentators have, that Vogel’s reconciliation with his father is predictable. Predictability is the point. This is a movie about the difficult passage from dark to light and the transcendence that takes you there.

https://www.csmonitor.com/The-Culture/Movies/2019/1120/Near-perfect-A-Beautiful-Day-captures-the-wholeness-of-Fred-Rogers

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Welcome Home ?

If we would open their prison doors for the sick, we must first learn to bind up the broken-hearted. If we would heal by the Spirit, we must not hide the talent of spiritual healing under the napkin of its form, nor bury the morale of Christian Science in the grave-clothes of its letter. The tender word and Christian encouragement of an invalid, pitiful patience with his fears and the removal of them, are better than hecatombs of gushing theories, stereotyped borrowed speeches, and the doling of arguments, which are but so many parodies on legitimate Christian Science, aflame with divine Love.
This is what is meant by seeking Truth, Christ, not “for the loaves and fishes,” nor, like the Pharisee, with the arrogance of rank and display of scholarship, but like Mary Magdalene, from the summit of devout consecration, with the oil of gladness and the perfume of gratitude, with tears of repentance and with those hairs all numbered by the Father.
Mary Baker Eddy
(SH 366:30–16)

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Spirit Day 2019

 

This year GLADD will celebrate Spirit Day on October 17th where we will all stand together – communities, celebrities, sports leagues, schools and many more – to send a message of solidarity and acceptance to LGBTQ youth.  Wear purple with GLADD in a stand against bullying and in support of LGBT youth.

 

On October 17, 2019, millions of Americans will wear purple on Spirit Day in a stand against bullying and to show their support for lesbian, gay bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) youth.

Conceptualized in 2010 by a high school student wanting to memorialize those who lost their lives to bullying, Spirit Day has since garnered widespread support from celebrities, TV news and entertainment programs, corporations, organizations, schools, local communities, and even national landmarks like the White House.

Among those who participated in previous years were public officials across party lines nationwide; celebrities like Mariah Carey, Nick Jonas, Laverne Cox, Ricky Martin, and Jimmy Kimmel; hosts of Good Morning America, CNBC, and The View; media outlets like MTV, CBS, Viacom, and BET; corporations including Facebook, PepsiCo, Twitter, and Delta Air Lines; and national landmarks like Times Square, the Empire State Building, and the New York Stock Exchange.

This year, Spirit Day is poised to be bigger and better than ever, with hundreds more notables signing on. Will you join us to send an affirming message to America’s youth and help put a stop to the bullying?

Whether it’s sharing information about Spirit Day and anti-LGBTQ bullying on your official blog, Instagram, or any other social media platforms you use; turning your Facebook or Twitter profile photos purple; or simply encouraging your colleagues and constituents to wear purple on 10/17, participating is easy – but its impact is tremendous.

Today, 7 out of 10 LGBTQ students experience harassment while at school. Of the disproportionate number of LGBTQ students bullied in the past year, less than half of those targeted sought help from their schools, and even when cases were reported, school officials rarely acted. Spirit Day shows LGBTQ kids, teens, and young adults, that there are people they can go to for help and affirmation.

By going purple on Spirit Day, you will show your solidarity with millions of Americans accelerating acceptance, while letting countless young people know you and your office/administration have got their back, and stand with them against bullying. As your constituent, I care about this issue, and I would like to see schools become a safer place for all.

For more information, including who else is participating, visit glaad.org/spiritday

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You are everything to Him with Laura Moliter

 

e-inspire by Laura Moliter

10/10/2019

“Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.”
(Deuteronomy 31: 6, the Message Bible)

 

 

You are strong. You are courageous. You are not intimidated.
Sure, it may seem like the world is overwhelming; time oppresses us, people use us or misunderstand us. We may feel attacked because of who we are or under pressure in our careers or in our relationships with others.
But, yes, we are strong and powerful to combat all that would try to make us feel small and weak and fearful. This bravery is ours not because of human will or because of ego or because of some personality trait we may or may not have. It is because of God. It is by our trust in the Almighty that we have strength and certainty.
For God is omnipotent. He is all-good, all-wise, all-loving, and He is right there with you, as this verse says. You are not intimidated because God is not, and He meets those challenges head on, keeping you safe, giving you light, inspiration, and the victory over those threats that are nothing to Him, while you are everything to Him!

 

Laura Moliter, Divine Purpose Coach and Spiritual Activist

Prayer unites all humanity under the government of one Father-Mother, divine Love.

 

“Nuestro Padre …”—“Our Father …”

 

 

Wrapping our prayers around the immigration crisis

Excerpt below from the October 7, 2019 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

 

Until recently, praying about the immigration crisis just seemed too complex. But the urgency of the situation was brought home to me when violence took the lives of innocent people in El Paso, Texas, where I also have family. I knew I needed to pray about the crisis, but where to start? If I started with the problem, I’d be perpetually overwhelmed. But if I started with God, I could get traction.

To help me glimpse what immigration might mean from a mental and spiritual perspective, I turned to the Bible. In one sense, the Bible can be seen as one long immigration story of a people moved by their search to understand God. In their quest for a homeland, the children of Israel initially searched for a physical place. Centuries later, Christ Jesus revealed that the true “promised land” of God wasn’t a piece of real estate but a heavenly concept. He said, “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20, 21).

In her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the founder of this magazine, Mary Baker Eddy, writes, “As the children of Israel were guided triumphantly through the Red Sea, the dark ebbing and flowing tides of human fear,—as they were led through the wilderness, walking wearily through the great desert of human hopes, and anticipating the promised joy,—so shall the spiritual idea guide all right desires in their passage from sense to Soul, from a material sense of existence to the spiritual, up to the glory prepared for them who love God” (p. 566). It’s this movement of thought from a limited, material sense of life and its possibilities to the understanding of God as Life, as infinite Soul or Spirit, that is key in our prayers for both immigrants and native citizens.

The qualities that make for a good life—such as peace, harmony, freedom, fulfillment, and goodness—are found in God, divine Soul. Everyone has equal access to God, so everyone has equal ability to enter into the “promised land” of God’s complete goodness. No one is left out. It’s not a change in location but a change in thought that ushers us into God’s kingdom.

After college, I worked at an emergency shelter for teens in crisis. From time to time, teenagers from immigrant families would come into our care. One evening when I got to work, I found that a young woman from Mexico had been placed in our care until relatives could be located. Staff had tried since early in the day to console her, but she would not talk to anyone or stop crying. I prayed to recognize that divine Love was present and could meet this young woman’s need for comfort. Later, when I was supervising the girls at bedtime, the young woman motioned for me to come over and asked if I would pray with her. She knew the Lord’s Prayer, so we began to pray in her native language, “Nuestro Padre …”—“Our Father …” (Matthew 6:9). The prayer was an acknowledgment that her heavenly Parent was present and transcended borders and languages in wrapping her in divine Love.

Political and religious oppression often causes many to emigrate, but Christ Jesus taught that divine Truth brings freedom. He said, “If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31, 32). Jesus lived in the midst of both political and religious persecution, yet he was the freest man on earth. He proved that it’s not physical circumstances but the spiritual understanding of our relation to God that brings freedom. Knowing that we really are God’s beloved, spiritual sons and daughters living under His supreme, harmonious government can free us from the oppression of limited circumstances. Jesus taught that, more than anything else, it is divine Love that brings us into the “promised land” and enables us to feel at home and experience this freedom wherever we may find ourselves.

Regarding host countries’ concerns over border security, it can be helpful to remember that Jesus taught the need for watchfulness and standing guard over thoughts and actions. In the book of John, Jesus refers to himself as a shepherd standing at the door of the sheepfold, guarding his sheep (see 10:1–15). A good shepherd’s watchfulness and protection keep wolves from entering the sheepfold. It’s not people but wolf-like thoughts—hatred, anger, racism, and divisiveness—that are denied entrance into the kingdom of God. Clearing away these impositions on our thinking enables us to discern Christlike intuitions that alert us to danger and keep everyone safe.

How prayer plays out practically in human experience can’t be outlined. For some, it may open doors to a new experience in a new country. For others, it may mean finding new purpose and strength—and safety—right where they are.

Prayer unites all humanity under the government of one Father-Mother, divine Love. Through prayer we can join the writer of Ephesians in declaring, “Ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow-citizens with the saints, and of the household of God” (2:19).

Elizabeth Schaefer
Guest Editorial Writer

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Now is the time to pay attention, get involved, and work together to turn the tide.

 

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Democrats are hoping that an increasingly diverse U.S. electorate can deliver them the White House in 2020, and California Sen. Kamala Harris made that clear in an opening statement criticizing President Donald Trump for using “hate, intimidation [and] fear” to divide the country and distract from his “failed policies.”

The American people, she continued, “know that the vast majority of us have so much more in common than what separates us, regardless of our race, where we live, or the party with which we’re registered to vote.”

South Bend Mayor Peter Buttigieg of Indiana is not the first openly gay presidential candidate – that would be 2012 Republican candidate Fred Karger, who never made a debate stage – but his candid description of his struggle deciding to come out in 2015 may have been the first for a nationally televised debate.

In a socially conservative community, he said, “I had to wonder whether just acknowledging who I was was going to be the ultimate career-ending professional setback.”

“You only get to live one life,” he said he decided, “and I was not interested in not knowing what it was like to be in love any longer.”

https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2019/0913/Democratic-debate-The-biggest-winner-was-clear-from-the-stage

 

September 20, 2019

Dear Rob,

Tonight, we will make history in Iowa.  GLAAD is partnering with The Advocate, One Iowa, and The Gazette to host the first 2020 Presidential Forum focused exclusively on topics that affect the LGBTQ community.

Watch the live stream here starting at 7:00 p.m. CT.

As the world watches, we will bring the issues that matter to LGBTQ and ally voters to the forefront of this race for the first time – issues like employment nondiscrimination, housing, conversion therapy, and the rise of hate and violence against LGBTQ people – especially trans women of color.

I don’t need to tell you at this point how bad Donald Trump has been for our community. Three years. 125 attacks against our community in policy and rhetoric. And this is our first chance to hear from the other 2020 candidates how they will reverse the travesties of this Administration and put us back on a path to full equality and acceptance.

Be sure to tune in tonight and get active on social using the hashtag #LGBTQForum. Now is the time to pay attention, get involved, and work together to turn the tide.

And it starts tonight in Iowa.

In solidarity,

Zeke Stokes
GLAAD Chief Programs Officer

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