Thursday, April 09, 2009

It's Good Friday for some



from w
Last night we had a Passover Meal (symbolic meal with flatbread, lamb, greens and spices) using part of the Jewish ritual and then the Christian remake of the ceremony with the Christian Communion. This morning at Altona Meadows/Laverton there was a reflective worship with a large cross lying on the floor and several symolic objects were added to do with the story of the death of Jesus, finishing with flowers and petals placed over the cross. Normally all flowers are removed from the church, but here the use of flowers was meaningful as the women's farewell to a beloved man, Jesus.

Then we came back to Geelong and a phone call alerted us to some different kind of story from Fiji. May God have mercy on poor Fiji! I had been optimistic of good sense, but a very elderly gentleman had a speech prepared for him and now there's a coup on the legal system it seems! Couldn't they have waited until after Easter and not spoil people's holidays!

12 comments:

lusi said...

Bula sia :)
We heard that things were unstable in Fiji tonight on the news and thought I would pop by and see if you knew more. Poor Fiji indeed! Isa lei!
We also had a Passover meal here on Wednesday night.
God bless you guys,
Love Lusiana x

Andrew Thornley said...

I am just stunned by this "Easter Revolution"
Seeing the President struggling through his statement, with all his minders around him making sure he didn't collapse in front of the cameras, left me with very mixed feelings for this once great High Chief.
The fragility of the Law.
The darkness of unfolding events is overpowering.
Where is Grace?

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Hello Lusi, hello Andrew,
Where is the mana, where is the sau in Fiji today? It is dark times. Lies are blatant, and an old man is 'used', ( I watched a little of the video on FijiTV news and it was painful to watch this stumbling man reading the script given to him,) good people are belittled, ordinary people get ulcers and sick from the anxiety and stress of daily living. Where is kindness, where is love? But of course Good Friday was partly about how a society can go radically wrong.
w.

Andrew Thornley said...

Indeed. When you look at the decrees that have been put in place, this is in effect Fiji's fifth coup since 1987, but this time a Presidential Coup.

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Hello Andrew,
Yes, but I would call it the President's ghost-writer's coup. I wonder how many days/weeks/months that paper has been waiting for the right timing... It wasn't written in a day.
w.

Andrew Thornley said...

Tragically,with the protection of the Constitution gone, Fiji seems to be moving backwards towards the time when the rule of law was the club, an era that Ratu Cakobau declared was over in 1874.

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Perhaps it's a more sophisticated kind of deception these days, much more hiding as well as pulling strings. At least it's out in the open now, no pretending to be legitimate after the appeals result.
Those who still maintain their integrity and ethics are still the real heroes in Fiji.
I had better stop writing on the topic because now I am a little afraid because there is no logic and it's all like a shifting mirage on the horizon.
w.

Andrew Thornley said...

Dear Wendy and Peceli,
I can understand how you feel and many other friends of Fiji as well.
I will make this my last contribution on this particular topic because who knows now the degree or extent of freedom that even blog-writers will receive, having heard that newspapers in Fiji are to be censored.
I wish to be able to return to Fiji, to continue my own historical interests but who knows what degree of surveillance may now be instituted by a regime filled with paranoia.
Your words "hiding" and "pulling strings" were very much characteristic of politics in the early mission period - for example the terrible massacre of Namena warriors on Viwa in 1841.
As the lotu then offered a new way of hope for the ordinary people of Fiji, so the lotu today will need to stand up and speak fearlessly in defence of the needs and concerns of the powerless. We also should watch out for the individual lives of people - the real heroes as you say - like Netani Rika, a man influenced in his ethical approach to journalism by the life of his highly-respected talatala grandfather.

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Okay, one more word before I stop! What a beautiful couple Neitani Rika's grandparents were. Rev Setareki Rika was Peceli's teacher at Nasoso. I know the next generation, Neitani's parents, Dorothy and Naca Rika. One Easter I stayed with them at Niusawa in Taveuni, (1966) and I remember they had a small baby boy at the time. Neitani or his brother. A very fine family.
w.

karlajean said...

and more love and prayers for Fiji and her people and her land....

Andrew Thornley said...

We certainly had intercessory prayers for Fiji today in our Uniting Church here in Sydney.
I think it is very important that 'Babasiga' be a relatively "safe" place where people can continue to come and share their deep feelings over the situation in Fiji. Netani's Rika's moving Easter Sunday editorial in the Fiji Times expressed the deep grieving of many in Fiji.
And a Fijian I spoke to today at church - many years out of Fiji and not eager to return even if there was work available - expressed outrage that there would not be elections for five more years. Would he be able to say that in Fiji today?

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Thank you Karla for your prayers and to Andrew for your comments. Yes, the editorial in the Fiji Times is generous and timely. As for a place to express views - it is hard to really say what we think - in writing. We don't want repercussions so we are often silent. Some Fiji blogs are full of exaggeration and abuse at times. Fijiboardexiles has an ongoing debate from opposite viewpoints (and some there such as Real Jack have been on Fiji forums for many years) and that's a place to put in your views perhaps. When we talk to Australians who ask about Fiji, it all seems too complex to answer. Only people with connections with Fiji can understand really.
Peceli and I will be meeting with some visitors from Fiji this week - Tomasi Kanilagi and others from the Methodist Church in fiji are in Melbourne at present so I wonder what they think about it all.
w.