Posted by: goodgoat | 20 January, 2015

Networked World

Goodgoat spent a day yesterday at a workshop looking at a new research tool which helps organisations to collect mass “micro-narrative” and then helps communities and leaders to interpret what has been collected, make decisions on how to shape change and then use the same tool as a monitoring mechanism. A comment was made at the workshop that these sorts of tools are starting to gain traction as the processing ability for data collection is now becoming available (e.g. tablets and smartphones).

I know that Seth Godin (a thought leader) has suggested that people can now make a difference by being uniquely who they are and attracting like minded people via social media (their “tribe”). Trying to make a difference when you have few people around you who think the same way that you do is a challenge. Yet the networked world allows us to seek out others who are like us, who share a vision, or at least an outlook on the world.

I am working with a church which is trying to encourage its local community to live out the theme of reconciliation and am considering how social media might help me in the task of both connecting locally but also with people with expertise in other places (my tribe!)

Time to connect!


Posted by: goodgoat | 7 August, 2013

Take This Moment

Goodgoat has just been singing for a few days and encountered these words (John Bell & Graham Maule) set to music by John Bell – a beautiful poem with words that speak to our depths, creating a space for God and looking for His leading in our lives.

I hope that you enjoy it too:

Take this moment, sign and space;
Take my friends around;
Here among us make the place
Where your love is found.

Take the time to call my name,
Take the time to mend
Who I am and what I’ve been,
All I’ve failed to tend.

Take the tiredness of my days,
Take my past regret,
Letting your forgiveness touch
All I can’t forget

Take the little child in me
Scared of growing old;
Help me here to find my worth
Made in God’s own mould.

Take my talents, take my skills,
Take what’s yet to be;
Let my life be yours, and yet
Let it still be me.

Here’s  a link to it set to music.

Posted by: goodgoat | 27 December, 2012

Where’s it all going?

As someone I know has just said…

Because a commercialised Christmas provided little lasting satisfaction, hordes are rushing out to the sales for another fix of the same. When will people learn that lasting contentment is not to be found in externals? :/

I agree with the thinking but am also more concerned with it than ever this year – reports are that more people than ever are going to the sales – I think that this is at least in part due to us being in more austere times and so people are buying goods they can’t afford at their normal prices. That may seem OK, but the combination of only being able to buy things people think will make them happy when prices are cut combined with the fact that those things won’t in fact make them more content indicates we may be heading for an even rougher time in society.

Advent is a time for hope and we need to keep carrying that hope into the world as we enter the New Year.

Posted by: goodgoat | 26 September, 2011

Prayers please!

Dear Franciscans,

Please may I ask for your prayers for Saturday – I am being professed on that day as part of my Area Meeting.

Bless you all,


The riots in the UK in the last week have put Goodgoat in mind of A Christmas Carol and the conversation with Scrooge:

“Are there no prisons?” asked Scrooge.

“Plenty of prisons,” said the gentleman, laying down the pen again.

“And the Union workhouses?” demanded Scrooge. “Are they still in operation?”

“They are. Still,” returned the gentleman, “I wish I could say they were not.”

“The Treadmill and the Poor Law are in full vigour, then?” said Scrooge.

“Both very busy, sir.”

“Oh! I was afraid, from what you said at first, that something had occurred to stop them in their useful course,” said Scrooge. “I’m very glad to hear it.”

“Under the impression that they scarcely furnish Christian cheer of mind or body to the multitude,” returned the gentleman, “a few of us are endeavouring to raise a fund to buy the Poor some meat and drink, and means of warmth. We choose this time, because it is a time, of all others, when Want is keenly felt, and Abundance rejoices. What shall I put you down for?”

“Nothing!” Scrooge replied.

“You wish to be anonymous?”

“I wish to be left alone,” said Scrooge. “Since you ask me what I wish, gentlemen, that is my answer. I don’t make merry myself at Christmas and I can’t afford to make idle people merry. I help to support the establishments I have mentioned: they cost enough: and those who are badly off must go there.”

“Many can’t go there; and many would rather die.”

“If they would rather die,” said Scrooge, “they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.”

I am very worried by the retributive justice being recommended by politicians and also by some who see the young people involved in the riots as “beyond redemption” – can they not see that there is only a small step from this to the “Final Solution” offered by the Nazi Party in WWII? What do they think people who are denied “Benefit” (and this is really “very basic income”) will do when they have no income and nowhere to live – say “thank you for teaching me a lesson, I’m of no use to society, I’ll just go over here into a corner and never bother you again”? I doubt it somehow.

I don’t know what the answer is but this needs careful thought, not instantaneous vote-winning retribution.

Posted by: goodgoat | 26 December, 2010

Post Christmas Blues?

Well, Christmas has come and gone again (well, actually we’re in the 12 days of celebration of the arrival of Jesus) – something has depressed Goodgoat over the last 24 hours. The opening up of the online environment to shopping (and the start of sales) on Christmas Day itself – is there no part of life that can now be set aside as Holy? In addition to this I have come across Ad Mortem Festinamus – have a listen to the sample here – sounds bright and breezy, doesn’t it?

Well, now think about the lyrics…”Ad mortem festinamus” means “We hurry unto death” – not exactly brimming with joy, is it? I think there’s a huge parallel with the lack of ability of the World to stop and listen for the Angels at Christmas “Hark the Herald Angels Sing, Glory to the New Born King, Peace on Earth and Mercy Mild…” don’t they all sound like things we need?

Well, if you’re finding yourself stuck in the rat race and buying more and more stuff, then why not just try a very simple alternative – how about testing something that many millions have found to be true, that we are more than the stuff we own, that God cares about us enough to come to us in the form of another human being, and that if we might only take the time out to talk to Him, we might find we have the biggest, best equipped friend ever – and that might just be the key to a more fulfilled life! Go, on try listening to something like Pray as you Go for a week – only takes about 12 mins a day – what do you have to lose, and what might you gain – and the gift is free! Merry Christmas and I pray for new life in the new year!

Posted by: goodgoat | 23 October, 2010

Experiences please?

Can anyone out there of a charismatic persuasion tell me how they discovered and developed their gifts?

Thank you!

Posted by: goodgoat | 20 September, 2010

Youth For Fair Trade 2010 International Conference Y4FT2010

International Youth For Fair Trade Conference 2010.

16-30? Love Fashion, Technology, Food & Drink? Have fun discovering how you can help improve the lives of the people that make the stuff you love…Join in at the Youth for Fair Trade 2010 Y4FT2010, 29th-31st October 2010 at Coventry University.

Goodgoat knows the people who are organising this conference. If you’re aged between 16 and 30 (it says 25 but I think it’s flexible) and are interested in Fair Trade then they’ve got an amazing range of activities. 18-30s can attend the full weekend and there’s a cut down version just on the Saturday to give those of 16 and 17 a taste of what Fairtrade is all about!

It’s amazing value – they’re providing lunch on the Saturday for all participants and for the 18s and over there’s a party on the Saturday night and also lunch on the Sunday.

If you can promote this more widely then please help them out. You can contact the conference office on +44 (0)24 7652 1260. Tickets are limited and you need to book before 15th October to get the very generous early bird discount. Click here and book now!

Here’s the flyer for 18-25s 18-25s Flyer
and here’s the flyer for 16s&17s 16s&17s Flyer

Youth for Fair Trade 2010 Conference Logo

Posted by: goodgoat | 31 May, 2010

Fear, uncertainty and doubt

One concept in selling is to introduce fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) into the mind of the person who is enquiring about the product. Well…I’ve been seeing the recent adverts for an automatic hand gel dispenser that doesn’t have a pump handle – and the FUD factor that’s introduced to sell it is that dirty hands touch pump handles therefore it’s better not to have a pump handle?!

Well, I’d like to point out that at the time you touch the pump handle, you’re about to wash your hands and also that you’ve probably already turned the water on at the tap and so left germs on there which you’re going to touch again to turn it off when you’ve finished washing your hands – yet is the company offering elbow operated taps like you get in hospitals? No. Is this product being sold on irrational fear?

Posted by: goodgoat | 19 April, 2009

How we spend our money

Goodgoat has been searching high and low for a good deal on his car insurance this week. In the book of Acts [of the Apostles] in the Bible those who had become Christians sold all they had and put it into a communal pot so that no-one was left in need. We are way off this in present-day Christian communities (though some of the responsibility for allocating funding to those in need is now taken by the government and funded by our taxes). So…when did you last look at how you spent money, or shopped around for a better deal? Goodgoat has found that he can save c.£60 by taking his legal and breakdown covers from someone other than his car insurer, and has also moved his phone and broadband to a lower cost provider. Simple searches on sites such as uswitch can throw up all sorts of savings. We can get very lazy just going with the “easiest” lowest effort provision of our services – perhaps a more responsible approach is to shop around and contribute any savings to charity?

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