Inner Circle


Thursday, 23 June 2016

Dear Inner Circle,

Here is a cracker of a story. We are surrounded by angels. Some of our supporters set aside money so that they can jump in when the circumstances are extraordinary and when the need is way beyond anything Wayside could do. Years ago, one of these angels told me he would be willing to pay the rent on a flat for a year if I knew someone for whom it would make all the difference. A man who had lived on the street and in the grip of alcoholism was showing the early signs of transformation. He’d stopped asking, “What can you give me?” and started to ask, “How can I help?”. It’s always a sure sign of a miracle on its way. Our dear angel paid a year’s rent and that man is free today of his alcoholism and flourishing in a job that he loves. Amazing? Absolutely! This week that same angel did the same thing for another fellow who I judged to be a good bet. This morning I looked into the face of a man whose physical features had changed overnight because he’d slept in his own bed in his own place. He was in today seeking help to enroll in a course that has a good chance of seeing him into employment. The transformation has begun not just because of a physical room to call his own, but because someone believed in him and was prepared to back him in this way. Amazing? Totally!

“My cup runneth over” is a phrase our past Governor used to say to me regularly. If you’ve ever met Dame Marie Bashir, you’ve had a brush with grace. Every time I see Dame Marie, she expresses her gratitude and awe for something or someone. I was in our lift once with Dame Marie and an Aboriginal women got in with us. Dame Marie said, “Every time I meet a woman such as you, I just want to say, ‘thank you, thank you, thank you.’” Well my cup runneth over too. Today I spoke with a high profile person who regularly does a shift on our front desk. He’s the last person in this city you’d expect to see taking people for showers or finding changes of socks or doing battle with our telephones. It’s hilarious that no one around here seems to know who he is and for many homeless people, he’s just “Fred on the front desk”. I’d love to tell you his identity but he’d be cross with me. I’d also love to tell you who the angel was from my first paragraph, but he’d be even more cross with me. I happen to know that business is not fabulous for that angel and he’s not one of this city’s uber rich anyway. His gift comes because his desire to do good, and to make the world a better place, actually trumps his own personal comfort. We’re surrounded by angels and that’s why my cup runneth over.

Part of this gratitude that overflows from me at this time is because of the support that you give to Wayside. It’s no secret around here that I find asking uncomfortable. However, all our growth in recent years has come without a single dollar increase in government funds but from the hearts and wallets of people who love what we do and are willing to share in the cost of what we do. We’re not across the line yet and we’ve got a long way to go but as the dollars come in each day I’m humbled that so many of you not just believe in what we are doing but are willing to make a sacrifice so that we can do it. Thank you to everyone who has given and please accept our deepest, widest, highest thanks. We’re crossing fingers and toes as we approach June 30, which is D Day for our health and life going forward.

A young woman whose story of transformation is so astonishing that a journalist has decided to write a book. They were here yesterday for a photo shoot. As photos were being taken, we just chatted. Here was a face that made time stand still. A woman who once could not look me or anyone in the face, today reached into my soul and filled me with love. What a face and what a joy for me to be lost in wonder in the face of a sister, fully alive.

Thanks for being part of our inner circle and use your face today to bring someone to life,


Donate to Wayside's Winter Appeal here.

Rev Graham Long AM

CEO & Pastor

The Wayside Chapel

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Be sure to follow Graham on Twitter if you have an account; @waysidepastor

Previous Inner Circles


16 June: Injecting some joy

9 June: At the end of the line

2 June: Lots of perspiration and a touch of inspiration

26 May: Swimming against the tide

19 May: Every 7 days but not weakly

12 May: I once was blind

5 May: A place to belong

28 April: Lest we forget

21 April: I've seen into the abyss

14 April: Colourful language

7 April: Poetic licence

31 March: Happy in the Cross

24 March: Easter

17 March: A party mix

10 March: The intimacy of everything

3 March: An unusual look

25 February: He ain't heavy

18 February: Tears of laughter and sadness

11 February: Wisdom is a tricky business

4 February: A wave from The Wayside Chapel

28 January: Some long distance loving

21 January: No time for judgement


17 December: Last note for 2015

10 December: Sanity Clause if coming to town

3 December: It's all about the presence

26 November: The joy of not knowing

19 November: The curse of perfectionism

12 November: To speak is to act

5 November: My cup runneth over

29 October: Prophet and loss

22 October: Finding yourself in a magical team

15 October: A silly question

8 October: Surprised by the joy

1 October: Being dead right

24 September: A day by the Wayside

17 September: It's a gold rush

10 September: The psychology of onions

3 September: Life comes from without

27 August: Surprised by the beautiful

20 August: Light shining through the cracks

13 August: A matter of balance

6 August: Recognising a gift

30 July: Your weakly note

23 July: 'A thing' from the Wayside

16 July: The future is calling

9 July: In love with some Dame

2 July: Better days ahead

25 June: Something funny, something beautiful

18 June: Seeing what's there

11 June: Amazing mates

4 June: There's a time and a place

28 May: The weight and the joy of being a neighbour

21 May: You're invited

14 May: Laughing, lying and loving

7 May: The awesome in the ordinary

30 April: Wayside light

23 April: Priceless gifts, freely given

16 April: Good news from the Wayside is great news

9 April: Awesome

2 April: Easter by the Wayside

26 March: Thankful for little things

19 March: A few minutes in the cross

12 March: Seeing what isn't there

5 March : A tour like no other

26 February: Tough love

19 February: Puffing or building

12 February: The two shall become two

5 February: Chest pains

29 January: Shear joy

22 January 2015: Fully alive

15 January 2015: Blessed interruptions

8 January 2015: A glimpse of glory


18 December 2014: Christmas hat in hand

11 December 2014: A little season of goodwill

4 December 2014: There was nothing silent about that night

27 November 2014: It's not about feeling better

20 November 2014: Gathering Moss

13 November 2014: Love the land, love the people

6 November 2014: The power of presence

30 October 2014: Paralysed by presence

23 October 2014: The joy of sight

16 October 2014: The best medicine

9 October 2014: Who would have guessed?

2 October 2014: There's no such thing as a terrorist

21 August: Saving souls

14 August: Squeaking out

7 August: A time for turning

31 July: You're okay

24 July: Happy tears

17 July: Let's aim higher

10 July: Gristle and good

3 July: The joy of not knowing

26 June: If not now, when? If not me, who?

12 June: Longing for riches

5 June: When you least expect it

22 May: Finding home

15 May: Flying

8 May: Tests, triumps and tissues

1 May: Skuse the French

24 April: Lifting the curtain

17 April: Collective love

10 April: Cardiac arrest

3 April: Awe struck

27 March: You're invited to something special

20 March: Rather a prohet than a loss

13 March: It's all happening at the wayside

6 March: Love makes all the difference

27 February: What goes around

20 February: The joy of being empty handed

13 February: Loving the growth spurts

6 February: Mighty glad to be back by the wayside

23 January: Some criminals have class

16 January: Wonderful surprises

9 January: Ready, set


19 December: Thanks for an awesome year

12 December: Mission and wishin'

5 December: The ups and downs and all is well

28 November: Kissed by the community

21 November: Our cup runneth over

14 November: A revelation from wayside

7 November: When excrement happens

31 October: I am therefore I think

24 October: We are surrounded by heroes

17 October: When you least suspect

26 September: A wayside wobbly

19 September: Knowing a gift

12 September: Advancing at the retreat

5 September: A little dose of good

29 August: Fighting with a feather

22 August: The boom is just beginning

15 August: True riches

8 August: Small is beautiful

1 August: Sensitive people miss all the best views

25 July: A whole lot going on at wayside

18 July: Kings Cross a place of courage

27 June: Holy ground

20 June: You cannot take what can only be given



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