Inner Circle


Thursday, 25 June 2015

Dear Inner Circle,

An appointment in Pitt St this week took a little longer than I expected, making me late for another meeting back at Wayside. As soon as I was out of the lift and headed for the nearest cab, I started to text the crew at Wayside to tell them I was on my way. I’d only taken a couple of steps on the footpath when I kicked what must have been a stick. I didn’t fall, but having lost my balance, I turned to see that I’d tripped on a white cane, held by a man wearing dark glasses! Thankfully the man didn’t stumble but he had stopped in his tracks. I don’t know if he was annoyed or frightened. My embarrassment level multiplied by a large factor and I offered my most profound apology.

Engaging in formal study is a daunting task for someone who can’t read or write. I spent some time yesterday with a fellow who grew up as a kid on the streets of Kings Cross. He was literally born on a park bench to an alcoholic mother. He lived a life that appeared to be destined for incarceration and early death. Yet I was looking into the face of a man fully alive. He’s been entirely free of alcohol for a while and he’s a fit, healthy looking man today. He’s been embarrassed by his complete lack of education and learned ways to dodge and dash to divert being noticed for his weakness. Yesterday we sat in my office and raised our glasses of water in a toast to his successful completion of a Certificate 3 at TAFE. What might look like a small step is a massive victory. There will be a graduation ceremony next year and I think the TAFE are inviting me to be a guest speaker on the occasion. What an achievement, what an honour! Thank God that Wayside never gives up and never writes anyone off as being too far gone.

This week ending June 30 is an anxious one each year. Wayside exists on the good will of people who dig into their pockets to help us do what we do. So far there have been no hiccups but running Wayside is a little bit like surfing. To be propelled along by a wave of good will is an astonishing and exhilarating activity but at the same time you know the power that pushes you along could simply roll away and whether surfing or being dumped or sitting idle, the power comes from the wave not from the surfer. I thank you all for coming on this ride and being part of the wave of goodwill that drives us to make the world a better, more humane place. If you are inclined to add to the wave that pushes us along, this last week of June is do or die for us. Please give here.

An advertising man, sharp as they come, was waiting at the front of our building to keep an appointment. For some who have not visited us, it can be a bit nerve wracking to stand at the front of our building. Trying to mind his own business a woman who was clearly a street dweller approached this immaculately groomed man and said, “If it’s not on; it’s not on!” At first he didn’t quite catch where this conversation might be leading. To clarify she said, “If you don’t stick it on, you can’t stick it in.” When told about his hilarious conversation, I suggested that perhaps the lady might have worked for the Family Planning Association.

Thanks for being part of this inner circle,


Rev Graham Long

CEO & Pastor

The Wayside Chapel

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Previous Inner Circles


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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