Costa Concordia: 2 Survivors Tell their Story

Costa Concordia: 2 Survivors Tell their Story

By Laurent and Marie-Clotilde Maubert       January 27, 2012
Storytelling – Reading Time Estimation: 4 min

Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Cagliari, Palermo, Rome and Savona. Many ports that attracted us. A week on board the Costa Concordia for rest, sightseeing, scenery, sunsets over the sea… Our first cruise. Our first shock on board: the superficiality, the easy life, temptations, gambling, welfare, the decor, fake luxury, kitsch pictures with surrealistic backgrounds… Everything encouraging us to spend money with serenity.

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Dance “diverse-city”!

Dance “diverse-city”!

by Marian West          January 27, 2012

The truest expression of a people is in its dance and in its music. ~ Agnes de Mille

This year’s annual NEW YORK ENCOUNTER, organized by Crossroads Cultural Center and held at Midtown’s Manhattan Center, offered a folk dance concert to highlight the beauty and “diverse-city” of NYC, a microcosm of world culture. The program was truly a festive celebration! A fascinating juxtaposition of a variety of cultures: Russian, Korean, Nigerian, Ukrainian, and Mexican. A feast for the senses of such rich and unique traditions, all expressed through dance. As an audience member, I was nearly jumping out of my seat with excitement at the outpouring of authentic cultural vivacity.

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The Revival of an Organ

The Revival of an Organ

By Gonzague Leroux      January 20, 2012

Since May 2005, Manhattan’s St. Malachy’s Church, also called the Actors’ Chapel, has been in pursuit of a new organ. The Paul Creston Memorial Pipe Organ Project will reach its goal in just a few weeks. It is a great gift for the community and the visitors of this church, located near “the Crossroads of the World,” Times Square, New York City.

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Behind every face is a story

Behind every face is a story

By Catherine Kustusch          January 20, 2012
Storytelling of a volunteer with Heart's Home based in Bangkok, Thailand, April 2011.

I remember how scared I was at the possibility of being around sick people. I’ve lost a lot of people I love, so death doesn’t scare me, but getting sick – especially so sick you can’t even talk anymore – that is one of my biggest fears. I remember how much I was worried that my sensitive sense of smell and my fears would get in the way of really being present for our friends. I will admit that the first time I went to the hospital it was very hard. Everyone is very clean and well taken care of, to the point that there actually isn’t that horrible “hospital smell” that I thought there would be. However, most of the people who live there cannot speak, and there are many who could before but now have lost the ability. At first, to be completely honest, I wanted to leave as soon as we had gotten there, and I just had to beg the Holy Spirit for his grace. I thought to myself: “What will we say?! Will I be sick? What am I doing here?!”

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Heart’s Home presents a report to the UN

Heart’s Home presents a report to the UN

By Apolline Bergier          January 13, 2012

Since 2005, the year of its accreditation at the UN, Heart's Home UN has had the privilege of being able to give its opinion in multiple ways on defending and promoting human rights. The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) is a good occasion to make the voice of our friends from underprivileged areas heard.

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Learning the value of life

Learning the value of life

By Natalie Helfrick               January 13, 2012
A volunteer with Heart's Home in Bangkok, Thailand – Extract from a letter received in December 2011.

There are children in our neighborhood with family members in jail, who are alcoholics, who sell drugs. Several express anxiety about returning home because of verbal or physical abuse. A lot are given a few baht (local money) for the day and the freedom to go where they please and by their own meals (mostly junk). Many are malnourished. Most lose their innocence far before anyone should. All are very thirsty for love and affection. One such child is Biw, a 9-year-old boy who falls in nearly all of these categories and comes to our house numerous times a day.

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