Tuesday, November 30, 2010

No stopping the good folks of the Maritimes (at Tim Hortons, on Sundays, with Blackberrys!)

Ken Symes (Media Analyst, Maritimes News)  Yes, it’s my job—that’s why you’ll see me mentioning so many stories from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island in my blog posts and writing. Here at KenSymes.com, in addition to journalling and mentioning the other things I’m publishing on the Internet, I thought I might also blog about Tim Hortons which is certainly something I love. You’ll see I’ve already made several posts about Timmies, but the truth is I’ve been overwhelmed! In Canada, Tim Hortons is ALWAYS in the news. There’s more Tim Hortons news than I’ll ever have time to blog about! Last week, the big news was how Tim Hortons was finally going to accept Interac and I love how they covered this story in Charlottetown, PEI.


The even bigger story from PEI which I just blogged about involves the debate about Sunday shopping versus church and rest. (Check it out: Sunday law, church and shopping in PEI by Ken Symes.)  Prince Edward Island was the last province in Canada to still have legislated restriction on Sundays, in this case preventing retail businesses from opening. A while ago, they allowed stores to open on Sundays for the four weeks before Christmas.PEI flag Then, they became concerned about the tourist season which is one of the province’s biggest economic drivers, so they decided to allow stores to open on Sundays from Victoria Day to Christmas Eve (almost 8 months of the year). Last week, Olive Crane, the Leader of the Opposition, introduced a private member’s bill to scrap this last remaining restriction on Sunday and just leave it up to stores to decide for themselves whether to be open or closed.
This is when the real drama began. The following narrative is clipped from the CBC’s article, “God smote opposition leader, minister suggests.”

Following an appearance on CBC Television's Compass Monday, Crane slipped on the television set, injuring her ankle and wrist. Transportation Minister Ron MacKinley brought up the incident during the debate on the bill Thursday.
"I'm not what you call a saint, but I believe in God and I believe in [doing] the best I can do. You were at CBC pushing Sunday shopping, were you not? On TV?" he asked Crane. "Right after that interview what happened?"Olive Crane, PEI Leader of PC Opposition
"We had a bit of an accident," Crane responded.
"Does that not tell you something?" said MacKinley.
"Like what?" said Crane.
"Like the Lord works in mysterious ways, and maybe you should start worrying what's going on here? We are going all the time, we're getting farther and farther away, whether it's prayers in the schools or whatever it is," said MacKinley.
The minister wrapped up his arguments on the bill soon after.
Premier Robert Ghiz allowed a free vote on the bill. It came to a tie, which was broken in favour of passage by the Speaker.
I’ve posted the video of this drama as well: PEI Sunday shopping law. Bottom line for me: There’s a far better Christian response to this changing of law regarding Sundays. My blog post is an attempt to work towards giving a better Christian response than the one offered by Transport Minister Ron MacKinley: Sunday law, church and shopping in PEI by Ken Symes.
This is certainly not the first time I’ve blogged about a news story coming out of the Maritimes. I’m going to list a few of them. I’ll start with my favourite Maritime blog post; it was about a pastor with a great idea.
ew083110technology.jpg Blessing for your Blackberry, iPhone, netbook, etc.   Rev. Lisa Vaughn invited Blackberry addicts, iPhone worshippers and users of other gadgets to bring them to church on Labour Day weekend for a special blessing, that owners might use these devices for good, life-giving communication. If you visit the blog post, you’ll find that I included a link to a video where you might follow along and pray a blessing for your smartphone, etc.
Reading-a-Jack-Chick-tract The boy who is telling his friends about Jesus and how Jack Chick has made a mess of it   This boy in Halifax, Nova Scotia was excited about his faith in Christ. He was eager to tell his friends at school about his faith, but the school told him to stop. Why? His parents had armed him with Jack Chick tracts: violent, scary, not suitable for children. It had been a while since I’d read a Chick tract and I was surprised by what I found in them.
Copy of tripoli-jail I also blogged about the incredible story of Don Symes (no relation to me, I don’t think so at least), a Canadian from Terrence Bay, Nova Scotia. Working internationally for an oil company, Don ended up spending 56 days in a Libyan jail for he crime he didn’t commit. Very likely when a Pakistani co-worker accused Symes and two other men of assaulting him, his word was taken over that of Don Symes and his co-accused since they were non-Muslim, even though their alibi was solid. According to sharia law, the testimony of a Muslim far outweighs anything said by a kafir. My post is not at all meant to stir up any hatred or ill will, but rather to question the notion that all religions are equal. I raised the question, Are we sure that Islam is a “religion of peace”?
Temporary-BridgeFinally, my tour of Maritime stories I’ve blogged about wouldn’t be the same without my post on The Bridges of Yarmouth County ;)
Yep, a bridge on top of the bridge that they’re not sure about—makes these people feel safe but I think they’re missing something here…

For some of these stories which made the news and were posted elsewhere on the Internet, you can find me making comments. There were many great articles on the Blessing of Blackberrys. I love how everyone tried to get creative with the title:
With regard to The boy who is telling his friends about Jesus and how Jack Chick has made a mess of it, I also found many web articles on Jack Chick tracts:
That’s just a sampling. I’ve found it very beneficial to comment on related blogs and articles after I post to my blog.

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